U-Shaped Kitchen Design Ideas

Explore U-shaped kitchen design ideas, and get ready to add a stylish and efficient design to your home's kitchen.
Bright White Kitchen

Bright White Kitchen

This traditional all-white kitchen with light hardwood flooring,features a granite-topped kitchen island, gorgeous pendant lighting, and spectacular window allowing for natural light to flood the space.

By: Sean McEvoy

If you're considering a kitchen remodel or planning to install a brand new kitchen and you've got a bit of space to work with, one of your first tasks will be to explore U-shaped kitchen design ideas.

Beautiful, Efficient Kitchen Design and Layout Ideas

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Yellow and Green Country Kitchen

Photo By: Peter Rymwid

Blue Coastal Kitchen

Multicolored Arts-and-Crafts Kitchen

Photo By: Photo Credit: Edward Addeo © Gibbs Smith, Barry Dixon Interiors, Brian D Coleman, Edward Addeo (photographer)

Green and Brown Arts-and-Crafts Kitchen

Creamy White Country Kitchen

Yellow and Green Country Kitchen

Mixed-Color Mediterranean Kitchen

Transitional Stainless Steel Kitchen

Black and Brown Traditional Kitchen

Brown Wood Old-World Kitchen

From

Celebrity Communities

Photo By: Courtesy of Denver Parade of Homes; Photo by Jeffrey Aron Photography © Denver Parade of Homes

Neutral Traditional Kitchen With Island

Photo By: Photo Credit: Edward Addeo © Gibbs Smith, Farrow and Ball, Brian D Coleman, Edward Addeo (photographer)

Mixed-Color Tuscan Kitchen

Photo By: Photographer: Harvey Smith ©Copyright: 2009 Harvey Smith Photography407.701.9405

Cherry and Emerald Modern Zen Kitchen

Black Contemporary Kitchen With Island

Brown and Neutral Tuscan Country Kitchen

RS_Designer-Katheryn-Cowles_h

From

Katheryn Cowles

Neutral and Brown Contemporary Kitchen

Gray Mediterranean Kitchen

Cherry and White Traditional Kitchen

Red Modern Kitchen

Green Transitional Kitchen

Brown Kitchen With Contemporary and Rustic Elements

Photo By: Photo Credit: HDR Homes ©Denver Parade of Homes

Arts and Crafts Kitchen With Yellow Cabinets

From

Abe Jerome

Neutral and Blue Rustic Kitchen

Copper and Cherry Kips Bay Kitchen

Photo By: Peter Rymwid

Neutral Contemporary Kitchen With Vaulted Ceiling

Photo By: 2012 BRIAN KELLOGG PHOTOGRAPHY ©2012 BRIAN KELLOGG PHOTOGRAPHY

Contemporary Kitchen With Island

And

John Colaneri

Blue Rustic Kitchen

And

John Colaneri

Brown Modern Kitchen and Dining Room

White Arts-and-Crafts Kitchen

White Cottage Kitchen With Reclaimed Wood

Brown Old-World Kitchen

From

Celebrity Communities

Photo By: Courtesy of Denver Parade of Homes; Photo by Jeffrey Aron Photography © Denver Parade of Homes

Brown Transitional Kitchen

Black-and-White Transitional Kitchen

From

Montreux Custom Homes

Photo By: Montreux Custom Homes ©Montreux Custom Homes

White Traditional Kitchen

White Cottage Kitchen

White & Gray Country Kitchen

White Contemporary Kitchen

Red Contemporary Kitchen

RS_Designer-Jane-Ellison_h

From

Jane Ellison

Photo By: Stuart Lirette

Neutral Contemporary Kitchen

Photo By: Brian Kellogg ©scripps Networks, LLC

White Contemporary Kitchen

RS_Designer-Kathleen-Perkins_h

From

Kathleen Perkins

©Image Courtesy of Kathleen Perkins

Brown Traditional Kitchen

Turquoise Transitional Kitchen

White and Gray Modern Kitchen

Beige Eclectic Kitchen

Turquoise Tropical Galley Kitchen

Photo By: Photo Credit: Edward Addeo © Gibbs Smith, Barry Dixon Interiors, Brian D Coleman, Edward Addeo (photographer)

White Traditional Kitchen

RS_designer-Ben-Herzog_h

From

Ben Herzog

White and Red Traditional Kitchen

White Traditional Kitchen With Island

Green and White Modern Kitchen

Brown and White Traditional Kitchen

Neutral Contemporary Kitchen

White Country Kitchen

Black-and-White Modern Kitchen

Beige Transitional Kitchen

Beige Old-World Kitchen

Brown & Gray Modern Kitchen

Neutral Contemporary Kitchen

Mixed-Color Contemporary Kitchen

Transitional White Kitchen

Beige Eclectic Kitchen

White Contemporary Galley Kitchen

Photo By: 2012 BRIAN KELLOGG PHOTOGRAPHY ©2012 BRIAN KELLOGG PHOTOGRAPHY

White Traditional Kitchen With Island Seating

White Contemporary Kitchen

White and Stainless Steel Modern Kitchen

Neutral Modern Kitchen

Photo By: Trevor Tondro ©All images copyright 2012 Trevor Tondro all rights reserved

Yellow Transitional Kitchen

White Transitional Kitchen

Black-and-White Transitional Kitchen

White Traditional Kitchen

White Open Contemporary Kitchen

White and Gray Transitional Kitchen

White Transitional Kitchen

White Traditional Kitchen

White Traditional Kitchen

RS_Logo-Cabochon_h

From

Deena Castello

White Contemporary Kitchen

White Contemporary Kitchen

RS_Designer-Judith-Taylor_h

From

Judith Taylor

Transitional Kitchen With Wood, Stainless & Marble

Neutral Contemporary Kitchen

Neutral Contemporary Kitchen

RS_Designer-Dorothy-Willetts_h

From

Dorothy Willetts

Brown Contemporary Kitchen

Brown and White Traditional Kitchen

White & Gray Kitchen With Farmhouse Table

Neutral Old-World Kitchen With Island

From

Karen Kettler

White Contemporary Shaker Kitchen

Contemporary Kitchen With Warm Wood Tones

Brown and White Contemporary Kitchen

Warm, White Traditional Kitchen

Neutral Contemporary Kitchen With Island

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From

Gioi Tran

Cool Gray Contemporary Kitchen

Urban Kitchen With Green Tile and Light Wood

RS_designer-Ben-Herzog_h

From

Ben Herzog

Neutral Contemporary Kitchen

RS_Designer-Mary-Broerman_h

From

Mary Broerman

Espresso and Stainless Contemporary Kitchen

White Traditional Kitchen

RS_Designer-Tracy-Dunn_h

From

Tracy Dunn

Brown Transitional Kitchen With Tile Backsplash

Green and Brown Contemporary Kitchen

Photo By: Andrew Bruah

White Transitional Kitchen

White Contemporary Kitchen

Neutral Transitional Kitchen With Island

White Townhome Kitchen

RS_designer-Ben-Herzog_h

From

Ben Herzog

U-shaped kitchens are often a preference of homeowners with a larger kitchen space; they require three adjacent walls, and many homeowners use the space in the middle to feature a kitchen island, perfect for food preparation and extra storage. Because of their larger design and luxurious utility, U-shaped kitchen layouts are favorites of homeowners looking for a large, functional and attractive kitchen space that can be used for cooking and cleaning as well as for conversation and gathering.

When you start researching common kitchen layouts, the term "work triangle" is likely to come up again and again. This mantra of kitchen layout design refers to the triangular spacing that creates a convenient relationship between three key elements of any kitchen: the stove, sink and refrigerator. Almost all kitchen layouts will feature some version of the work triangle—and you should be a bit leery of any that don't (and have a contractor on speed dial). The bottom line is that no cook wants to beat an inconvenient (and potentially disastrous or even dangerous during meal preparation) path from stove to sink to refrigerator. So even if you're considering a unique layout for your U-shaped kitchen design, you should definitely make every effort to maintain the work triangle.

A hallmark of U-shaped kitchen design is its full use of three adjacent walls. Other kitchen designs—like L-shapes and galley kitchens, for example—use only two walls. This may, in some cases, increase the efficiency of these designs—in a galley kitchen, which consists of two parallel walls with a narrow corridor between them, cooks may simply need to pivot 180 degrees in order to access cooking features, then do an about-face to turn their attention to cleaning. The disadvantage of galley or L-shaped kitchens in comparison to U-shaped kitchens, of course, comes down to space. U-shaped kitchens by their nature generally are larger and provide more space for cooking, cleaning, food preparation and storage. In most U-shaped kitchens, these elements are separated into distinct zones.

Often, the cleaning features of a U-shaped kitchen will be located on the external-facing wall—or the "bottom of the U." One side wall will generally be dedicated to cooking features—the range and any other smaller ovens will generally be located here. This side wall will also usually feature storage elements in the form of cabinets and drawers. The opposite side wall will generally feature more storage, including the refrigerator, freezer and any other food storage elements.

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