Get the size you need!

Small Kitchen With Island Ideas. How To Have An Island In A Small Kitchen

June 07, 2022 | Updated on: June 07, 2022

modern small kitchen with an island

A small kitchen island adds functionality to a space whether it’s for prepping meals, snacks, extra counter space, and even storage. Homebuyers prefer having a modern small kitchen with an island in their dream home. However, one misconception they have is they think small kitchens can’t have an island. But the truth is adding an island to a small kitchen is feasible. In fact, there are a lot of small modern kitchen ideas with islands that can be found.


A kitchen with a small island is common in apartments and condo units. People who frequently move from house to house or are still waiting for their dream home to be built would find a kitchen island small space practical. A small condo kitchen island is one of the most popular island styles that homebuyers would ask for their contractors to build. But if you are wondering how to make an island in a small kitchen, by yourself, then stick until the end of this blog. Here, we are going to talk more about kitchen islands for small spaces and how you can build one in your home.

Kitchen island designs for small kitchens

a small island in a white l-shaped kitchen

It’s a given that small kitchens can only provide limited storage space. If you have so many utensils and cookware, it can be challenging to fit all of those in two cupboards. But the good news is, you have the option of how to fit an island in a small kitchen. You just need to create a small kitchen design with an island that would be proper for you. First, view our ideas about a small kitchen with an island layout. Second, measure your kitchen to determine the small kitchen island dimensions that would fit into your space. A kitchen island small size design is commonly seen in small homes so it is so easy to find a small island kitchen plan. Below are some examples of kitchen island designs for small kitchens.

  1. Small L-shaped kitchen with an island

We all know that the most utilized kitchen layout for almost any kind of home is the small L-shaped kitchen with an island layout. L-shaped kitchen designs are nestled into corners and generally have two open ends, allowing for easy access to equipment and cooking ingredients. This allows people to walk around freely without causing too much commotion, which is ideal for entertaining guests while cooking.

  1. Small U-shaped kitchen with an island

In a U-shaped kitchen with a small island, kitchen cabinets are arranged around three of the kitchen walls. This creates a huge, open area in the kitchen's center, allowing for free mobility and good kitchen circulation. Island in a small U-shaped kitchen is ideal if you are ready to sacrifice space. Wider U-shaped kitchens often have 6 feet or more of room in between facing walls and can accommodate an additional island in the center of the room to provide more worktop space and shelving.

  1. Small open concept kitchen with island

For compact homes, an open concept small L-shaped kitchen with an island is a terrific concept. Because it lacks walls and doors, it allows spaces to flow into one another, making the home appear larger than it is. An open kitchen also provides a casual and welcoming atmosphere.

  1. Small corner kitchen with an island

Corner kitchens have long been popular kitchen layouts. Corner kitchens, which are built along two neighboring walls, are ideally constructed to maximize the connecting point between the two walls, which is often overlooked. This is why a corner kitchen is an excellent solution for limited spaces where every spare centimeter must be utilized to the greatest extent feasible.

  1. Small kitchen island with a load-bearing wall

Small kitchen island against wall ideas brings in more natural light, which improves comfort and productivity. Almost all kitchen walls are load-bearing and in instances where a particular wall gets in the way of your layout or in a space where you intend to build a kitchen island, the best that you can do is to integrate your island and attached one of its sides to the wall. This creates a more bar-like appearance as commonly seen in farmhouse kitchens. 

  1. Small kitchen island with structural post

Because kitchens are frequently located towards the corners or edges of a house, it is generally the room that includes support columns. Despite the existence of a column, a skilled designer will be able to utilize the area. They may either hide it with built-in storage or incorporate it into the design.

  1. Center island for small kitchen

Regardless of the layout of your kitchen, whether it’s L-shaped, U-shaped, or open space, you always have the choice to integrate even a tiny kitchen island that would fit just fine. Make sure to hire the best contractor or consult an interior designer to give you more insights and designer advice that will help you achieve your dream kitchen space.

Advantages and Disadvantages of a Small Kitchen Island

white kitchen island with black countertop built-in sink

 Small kitchen islands can be advantageous for many reasons. They can add extra counter space and storage. Adding an island allows you to spread out and be more efficient, but it may also disrupt the flow of the room. The pros and cons of adding an island are outlined below.



More storage space – everyone benefits from having an extra storage space. Having an island is a great way to incorporate one in the kitchen. Whether it’s for storing frequently used cookware, utensils, or other items, extra storage space will always come in handy.

It may take up too much space – When a kitchen is so small, sometimes, a kitchen island will only make it more cramped. It may take up much of your kitchen space that it becomes hard to move around. 

Extra counter space – the bigger your workspace is when cooking in the kitchen, the more efficient your workflow will be.

Inconvenient Layout – while a kitchen island is feasible in whatever kitchen layout you have, there are cases where adding a kitchen island at the center will only make the layout inconvenient. It is better to consult an interior designer first so you will know your best possible options.

Seating – when you have a kitchen island, you may utilize it as a breakfast nook or a bar counter where you can interact with your guests while preparing dinner.

The wrong island size might be a problem – big islands are inappropriate in small kitchens. You can’t just build an island right away without knowing whether it will fit within your space or not. Sometimes, the wrong island size installed in kitchens might even cause disruptions and an unpleasant kitchen aesthetic design.


Best Small Kitchen Island Ideas

classic kitchen design with two levelled island

There are hundreds if not thousands of kitchen island ideas for small kitchens you can find online. With a reasonable approach, the possibilities are endless. With interior design services and various materials available to view and purchase, designing kitchen spaces has never been easier. Here are great examples of ideas for kitchen islands for small kitchens.

  • Kitchen island with wheels

A small kitchen island on wheels is also called a rolling cart. Rolling carts are more like moveable prep spaces kept to the side of the kitchen rather than publicly and permanently alongside your principal worktops. These are great to have in tiny kitchens where you constantly need to modify and arrange furniture for certain occasions.

  • Island kitchen table

A small kitchen island dining table, rather than an island, may provide the impression of additional space in a large rural kitchen. If you're concerned about needing to create a place for more table space, wall-mounting, or shelves, these basic kitchen appliances might help you feel more organized and open.

  • Small kitchen island with seating

Many people love to have a small space kitchen island with seating. Adding a couple of seats around the island will make kitchens look inviting and stylish. The island can then be used as a breakfast nook or bar where you can lounge with your guests before or after dinner. You can also incorporate a small kitchen island with bench seating if you want to have a more rural or farmhouse vibe.

  • Small kitchen island with dishwasher

If there is enough space, you may place a dishwasher on any kitchen island. Some islands have easily accessible plumbing and electrical connections, whereas others have not. Piping underneath the house is too expensive for freestanding islands, although it can be done if absolutely necessary.

  • Kitchen island with small sink

Rather than walking back and forth to the kitchen sink to wash veggies or wipe your hands, a small kitchen island sink provides functional access to water as well as a convenient spot to store utensils. It is also deemed ideal for modern and contemporary kitchen styles.

  • Small kitchen island with oven

If you love to bake, you can transform your kitchen island into your mini baking station by putting the oven underneath the counter. You will have easy access to it, efficient workflow, and a convenient way of placing appliances.

  • Small kitchen island with storage

Of course, because a kitchen island can provide storage space for cookware, kitchen utensil, and even appliances, putting storage spaces underneath its counter is common. There are, however, modern kitchen islands where the storage space is placed on one side only, leaving the other side open to incorporate a seating area.

  • Curved kitchen island small kitchen

One of the styles we've been eyeing is curved furniture or an irregularly shaped island, and we love how it applies to kitchen islands. A spherical kitchen island serves as a magnificent focal point in an opulent baker's kitchen, seamlessly integrating storage spaces, counters, and architectural features.  

Few popular kitchen designs where you can find small islands are a farmhouse small kitchen island and a small rustic kitchen island. These traditional yet timeless designs have captured the hearts of homeowners and home design enthusiasts since time immemorial and still continue to stay on top of the trend now. A minimalist modern small kitchen with an island is also being put in the spotlight as many people are trying to adapt to the minimalist aesthetic lifestyle. 


Article by:

Valentina Melnikova - Lead Designer at Cut2Size

Office 403.366.7411

Hi there! I’m a millwork designer and an owner of a kitchen cabinet manufacturing company. With a team of professionals, I work on designing and manufacturing high-end millwork. Combining professional designing and manufacturing skills is what allows us to develop and translate our plans into a reality through our uniqueness and exclusive ideas. Our employees are highly skilled and creative thinkers that also utilize their professionalism and experience to take millwork to the next level. I’m very familiar with the industry and I take on each project from the design to the final product. With that said, if you’re looking for design advice or technician help, you’re in the right place.