Garage Door Portland 50 Small Kitchen Ideas (2018 -
Garage Door

50 Small Kitchen Ideas (2018

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50 fabulous small and tiny kitchen ideas and designs. This is your ultimate guide to small kitchens that includes many images plus 27 tips for creating a terrific kitchen in a small space.

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Cool small white and natural wood small kitchen with wine storage, breakfast bar and winding staircase dropping overhead.  This is a super smart design for a two-level apartment.

Thanks for visiting our small kitchen ideas photo gallery where you can search hundreds of compact kitchen design ideas.  In fact, you’ll some are downright tiny.

If you want a little fun, give designing your own kitchen a shot with these fun kitchen design software options.

What qualifies as a small kitchen?

A small kitchen is defined as one being 70 sq. ft. or smaller (approximately).

Small Kitchen Statistics

We analyzed 581,968 kitchens according to size and concluded that 8.08% of kitchens fall in the small size range.  Here’s the chart.

Chart setting out kitchen size percentages with small making up 8.08% of kitchens.

Chart: Small kitchens make up 8.08% of all kitchens based on a sample size of 581,968 kitchens.

Small Kitchen Ideas

Small single line kitchen with curved bench seating dining area.

The superstar here with this small kitchen design is the built-in curved seating booth around a small kitchen table accompanied by two bucket swivel chairs.

Small kitchen in an attic apartment

Here’s a fabulous white small kitchen in an attic with skylights and white subway tile backsplash.

Small l-shaped kitchen with contemporary wood cabinets, open upper shelving and white backsplash. Includes half-fridge and miniature range.

Small l-shaped kitchen with contemporary wood cabinets, open upper shelving and white backsplash. Includes half-fridge and miniature range.

 

Gorgeous white and black small kitchen with white subtile wall next to brick wall. Black countertops contrast nicely with white cupboard faces.

Gorgeous white and black small kitchen with white subtile wall next to brick wall. Black countertops contrast nicely with white cupboard faces.

Small yellow kitchen with loads of cabinet space. Extra light emitted from skylight. I don't care for the beige backsplash - should be white.

Small yellow kitchen with loads of cabinet space. Extra light emitted from skylight. I don’t care for the beige backsplash – should be white.

Just for fun... open hatch showing tiny kitchen of a teardrop camping trailer.

Just for fun… the ultimate tailgating kitchen.  It’s the rear hatch kitchen for a teardrop camping trailer.

Modern small kitchen with dark wood flooring and green backsplash set against white cabinets and white ceiling.

Modern small kitchen with dark wood flooring and green backsplash set against white cabinets and white ceiling.

Tiny white minimalist kitchen with wood countertops. White and gray hexagon tile backsplash adds an interesting texture to the space.

Tiny white minimalist kitchen with wood countertops. White and gray hexagon tile backsplash adds an interesting texture to the space.

Tiny l-shaped white kitchen with green baseboards in an apartment. Small wood peninsula breakfast bar separates kitchen space from apartment entry.

Tiny l-shaped white kitchen with green baseboards in an apartment. Small wood peninsula breakfast bar separates kitchen space from apartment entry.

Cozy white kitchen in condo with wood countertops and stainless steel appliances. This has everything you need including a decent amount of counter space for such a small kitchen area.

Cozy white kitchen in condo with wood countertops and stainless steel appliances. This has everything you need including a decent amount of counter space for such a small kitchen area.

Long and narrow la-shaped kitchen newly renovated with white cabinets, yellow accent wall, stainless steel appliances and wood flooring. Again, I'm not a fan of the beige countertops, but I love the ruby red backsplash.

Long and narrow la-shaped kitchen newly renovated with white cabinets, yellow accent wall, stainless steel appliances and wood flooring. Again, I’m not a fan of the beige countertops, but I love the ruby red backsplash.

Modern blue and white u-shaped small kitchen with window above the sink.

Modern blue and white u-shaped small kitchen with window above the sink.

Fabulous tiny white kitchen with black and white checkered floor and check out the built-in mini pantry along the opposing wall... brilliant design. The interior designer

Fabulous tiny white kitchen with black and white checkered floor and check out the built-in mini pantry along the opposing wall… brilliant design. The interior designer did a great job here with this kitchen renovation project.

Small single wall with island kitchen with plenty of light natural wood and stainless steel appliances.

Small single wall with island kitchen with plenty of light natural wood and stainless steel appliances.

Tiny white kitchen with black countertops and breakfast bar peninsula that accommodates two kitchen bar stools.

Tiny white kitchen with black countertops and breakfast bar peninsula that accommodates two kitchen bar stools.

Isn't that cute and cozy? Tiny, tiny, tiny white modern kitchen with dark gray countertops and black appliances. I think only one person can cook in that kitchen at a time.

Isn’t that cute and cozy? Tiny, tiny, tiny white modern kitchen with dark gray countertops and black appliances. I think only one person can cook in that kitchen at a time.

Cave-like small kitchen with a decently long breakfast bar. Not the smallest kitchen in our collection of small kitchen images, but it's fairly small and gives you a great idea of what you can do in a smallish kitchen space.

Cave-like small kitchen with a decently long breakfast bar. Not the smallest kitchen in our collection of small kitchen images, but it’s fairly small and gives you a great idea of what you can do in a smallish kitchen space.


Single wall contemporary kitchen with white cabinetry. Dining area directly in the kitchen space so it's very efficient and also looks great.

Single wall contemporary kitchen with white cabinetry. Dining area directly in the kitchen space so it’s very efficient and also looks great.


The wood countertop and checkered backsplash make this tiny kitchen a winner. I'm not too crazy about the engraved cabinets (shaker style would look better) but the black and white backsplash and floor look amazing.

The wood countertop and checkered backsplash make this tiny kitchen a winner. I’m not too crazy about the engraved cabinets (shaker style would look better) but the black and white backsplash and floor look amazing.

White and black small kitchen with tiny peninsula off of which extends a cozy black dining table for 3 people. Living room adjacent to the kitchen - overall nice open concept living space.

White and black small kitchen with tiny peninsula off of which extends a cozy black dining table for 3 people. Living room adjacent to the kitchen – overall nice open concept living space.

Small red modern kitchen in an apartment

Small red modern kitchen in an apartment. Like many apartments, there isn’t a great deal of room for a kitchen. Here’s an example of a very small design that pops with red.

Small gray kitchen with small kitchen dining table

Small single line gray kitchen with a small kitchen table with seating for four people.

Modern compact blue kitchen interior

This is one of my favorite compact kitchens on this page. I like that metallic blue with speckled black backsplash. Look at how the part with sink curves outward. It’s a great design with plenty of storage.

Small light wood kitchen

Here’s a handsome tiny kitchen with light wood cabinets as well as white cabinets.

27 Clever Small Kitchen Tips (with Photo Examples)

Above is our full gallery showcasing many small and tiny kitchen photo ideas for 2018.  Below is what we call our “Tips” section where we provide commentary on a wide array of compact kitchen designs to illustrate tips for small kitchen design.

1. Place storage along walls as much as possible

Okay, this isn’t exactly a small kitchen, but it does illustrate a good small kitchen tip and that is to add storage and even wall ovens to unused wall space that encroaches beyond the kitchen space. This can work in apartments or small homes.

2. Create space saving dining areas

Classic u-shaped small kitchen. Peninsula is used efficiently with simple elevated breakfast bar. For a small space, this offers plenty of surface area.

3. Add surface areas that don’t impede use of the space

This is a great idea. Look at the simple chrome breakfast bar added to this small single wall kitchen. It uses hardly any space, doesn’t get in the way and looks really good.

4. Go tiny if necessary and make it work

I think this tiny kitchen design is smaller than the kitchen we had in our mid-size RV this past summer. BUT, it will keep you fed. I do think the blank walls are a big waste of space though.

5. Flush mount cabinets to retain space

Notice the flush-mounted cabinetry which is a great space-saving technique for kitchens. Without it built-in (i.e. flush to wall), that entire bank of cabinets couldn’t be included. Another very cool design tip here for small spaces is the under lighting at the floor. It adds an extra lighting element that makes the space more interesting and distracts from the fact it’s small. This is definitely one of my favorite small kitchen designs for so many reasons.

6. Turn a single wall design into an l-shape layout

L-shape corner kitchens are great for small spaces because you actually get plenty of working space in a small space. It also offers a small open area for a dining table or even small island.

7. Add curves

Most people aren’t going to splurge on a custom curved design like this for a small kitchen, but it does give you an idea of just how creative a smaller kitchen can be.

8. Use glass-faced cabinets for the perception of more space

Another classic u-shape kitchen. A good tip here is how using glass-faced cabinets make it appear just a bit bigger.

9. Add excitement and energy with splashes of bright colors

Hot pink… BOOM. The takeaway: add splashes of color to a small kitchen to give it some excitement. Hot pink maybe not for everyone, but yellow, green, red and blue in moderation can look fabulous. Source: Modify Your Space.

10. Fit in cabinets and additional surface areas (i.e. simple peninsula)

Another great (better?) example of how a splash of color enhances small spaces. I love this apartment kitchen. Another good tip is the simple breakfast bar added… it gives it a fuller kitchen lool. Source: Modify Your Space.

11. Go for single peninsula instead of single wall to accommodate more people

Okay, this is the bomb small kitchen. The entire thing is a peninsula jutting out in the middle of the room. Normally this style would be against the wall, but this is in the middle of the room. This way you can have two or three people working here on each side. Notice the lone stool at the end… I love that. This is a very cool small kitchen.

12. Balance counterspace with upper cabinetry

I have a love/hate relationship with this design. I applaud the decent amount of storage (i.e. cabinets) for a small space. However, I think those uppers would get in the way when trying to work on the counter. An easy solution would be a small mobile kitchen island or butcher block in the middle. Takeaway: If you have open middle space, get a butcher block or small kitchen island.

13. Go light and bright to make it look bigger

Light = perception of more space. Imagine this beautiful tiny kitchen in dark gray or dark brown. It would look so much smaller. However, the light wood and backsplash make it appear bigger than it is.

14. Commercial grade with stainless steel throughout

A single wall compact kitchen example that’s nothing special in layout but is very cool with respect to materials – lots of stainless steel make this compact kitchen a highly functional design.

15. Just because it’s small doesn’t mean it has to be plain – invest in a backsplash for example

This is a nice small traditional kitchen. It’s special because of the attention paid to the backsplash. Even though the backsplash is small, it makes this kitchen just a wee bit better.

16. Use the entire kitchen as an accent piece for the entire living space

Compact kitchens lend themselves to be bright because in an open concept living space, the bright colors liven up the overall space. Here is an example of high gloss acrylic finish in a fuschia.

17. Incorporate clever space-saving ideas for eating and working (or both as the kitchen blow does)

Now we’re cooking with gas. Some clever designer added a cute dining table in the space. Space saving techniques like this are cool (I think).

18. Make it pop with your backsplash

Here’s another example how the backsplash can dramatically improve the kitchen.

19. Have a single-wall layout? Add an island

Big TIP here and that is whenever possible with a single line kitchen, add an island. You almost double your storage and workspace.

Back to that tip about adding an island to single wall kitchens… put an elevated breakfast bar on that island to create a small dining area. Boo ya!

20. Better yet, make it a u-shape for more storage and work space

This is an example of a minimalist kitchen design in a tiny space. I’m not wild about it, but I can appreciate the design.

21. Save more space overall with a washer/dryer hybrid in the kitchen

I can’t put my finger on this example as to what’s so special about it, but I included it because I think it’s a great looking compact kitchen that just plain works. Oh yeah, it doubles as a laundry room which is can work in tiny apartments or condos. I’d take a washer/dryer combo in the kitchen over having to walk to some basement laundry room or laundromat.

22. Most l-shaped small kitchens can fit an island

Pretty standard fair here. Doesn’t look all that small because of the tall ceiling plus the island adds plenty of “workable kitchen space”. Overall, this is an example of terrific small kitchen design.

23. Add windows and skylights to make it look so much bigger (and it’s so much more pleasant)

Ahhh, one of my favorite tiny kitchens. I love those minimalist wood cabinets… but what really makes this special is the simplicity and the window. Notice how much the window enhances this tiny space.

24. Go looooong – use up that wall space even if a single wall layout

Have a long wall, why not make a long single wall kitchen. I’d take a long kitchen over not so long. Yet, because the entire kitchen is pretty much along one wall, it takes up very little space.

25. Opt for small even in larger spaces for enhanced flow throughout the home

Interesting concept here. Actually a bit of a waste because that space could actually accommodate a large kitchen. I’m not sure creating a compact kitchen in a large space is the best way to go, but it does create a nice flow in the overall great room design.

26. Build in a dining bar right in the kitchen to efficiently use up every square inch

Here’s another favorite of mine because it’s a small modern kitchen that actually looks cool. Notice how there’s a wooden minimalist breakfast bar in the corner which opens up the space making it look bigger yet at the same time offering plenty of functionality (i.e. eating and/or preparing food). All in all, this is a brilliant and efficiently designed kitchen.

27. Brilliant Cabinet Design and Layout for Compact Kitchen Space

39 Stunning Log Cabin Home & Mansion Design Ideas that Will Make You Re-Think Your Favorite Style of Home

Small kitchen with gray cabinets. Notice how much cabinetry is placed in a compact kitchen space. Very well done.

Common Small Kitchen Styles

In many small-sized homes, galley style kitchens are popular because they provide as much space as possible by lining both sides of the room with cabinets and appliances. However, it can be difficult to have more than two people in the room at once, so they don’t have space for guests to congregate in them.

There usually isn’t space to eat in these small kitchens either. Galley style kitchens account for a little over 15% of the 580, 913 kitchens researchers surveyed.

Single-wall kitchens, which account for 7.95% of kitchens in the same survey, are also a common style in small homes or apartments. Single-wall kitchens often open onto the living area, only separating the rooms by counters that serve as a place for prepping meals and, with seating, as an eating area as well.

As for style, the 5 most popular styles for compact kitchens are contemporary (26.51%), transitional (18.68%), traditional (17.39%), modern (13.16%) and farmhouse (3.81%).

Create Space with Paint

Although you won’t create real space, using the right color paint can give the illusion of a more spacious kitchen. Light paint colors open the space, while darker colors make it seem smaller. Painting everything in a kitchen white or pastel colors can make a room seem bigger. Also, painting the trim in the kitchen a lighter version of the wall color gives the illusion of more space.

Creative Storage Solutions

Since storage is usually an issue in both galley and single-wall kitchens, it is important to get creative. Installing shelves on a wall to use for stacking your everyday dishes is a good way to add more storage. You can also add hooks beneath the shelves to hang pots and pans or coffee mugs.

Knock Down Walls

If it is feasible, removing the wall between the kitchen and the dining room or the living room can also provide more space. However, you should first have a contractor examine the wall to make sure isn’t a support wall. If it isn’t, then the contractor can remove it to provide more space in the kitchen.

There are several small kitchen design ideas that can help make your home’s small kitchen area more functional for your household.

We suggest bookmarking this page because as new kitchen photos are added, this gallery will automatically update.

As you can see, you can filter your search by style, color, floor, kitchen features, lighting and more. This way you can really drill down to find exactly what you’re looking for.

Get a kitchen cart on wheels

Our first “kitchen island” was a butcher block on wheels.  We had a tiny cottage house with a teeny kitchen.  We wanted more workspace so we bought a small butcher block on wheels.  Despite being so small, it was a terrific and inexpensive addition to our kitchen.

Check out these kitchen islands on wheels for more ideas.

Use Small Appliances

Counter space is a premium in any kitchen.  It’s even more so in small kitchens.  For this reason, if you can manage, opt for smaller appliances such as a small microwave, small toaster oven and other small kitchen appliances that typically take up counter space.

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