U-Shaped Kitchen Layouts

U shaped kitchen floor plans can be very efficient designs, with everything close to hand and no through traffic.

The main downside is that you have two corners to deal with. Sometimes if the opposite working walls are fairly close together you can be better off using the space as a galley rather than a U.

A galley or L-shape can sometimes be turned into a U by adding workspace across the end of the galley, or a peninsula to an L shape.

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3 Responses to U-Shaped Kitchen Layouts

  1. frank hogan says:

    In a U shape layout, what is minimum recommended distance in feet between the opposite walls?

  2. kevinw1 says:

    Hi Frank, a great resource for questions like this is the NKBA site at

    For your specific question, they say this:
    “The width of a work aisle should be at least 42” for one cook and at least 48” for multiple cooks. Measure between the counter frontage, tall cabinets and/or appliances. The width of a walkway should be at least 36”.
    Code Requirement: State or local codes may apply.”

  3. joyce brown says:

    I like the information you gave on a u shape kitchen;but my deli ma is placing an island in a u shaped kitchen. my kitchen is 16 feet wide and 20 feet long. how wide and how long should my island be? and I would like to place an microwave in it.

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