5 Tips for Adding Counter Space to Your Small Kitchen

Kitchens are an essential component of any household, and limited space can be bothersome. Keep reading for some tips from guest blogger Kerrie Kelly of Home Depot on how to add some extra space to your kitchen.

QDT Editor
3-minute read

Smaller homes often come with small kitchens. The kitchen is considered the heart of the home, so don’t let a modest space limit your time spent in it. Whether preparing food or working at the counter, kitchen islands and bar carts are simple, versatile additions that yield big results. Let’s take a look at a few options that will not only add more storage and counter space, but a stylish pop as well.

1. Free-Standing Kitchen Island

If space allows, a free-standing kitchen island is the closest you can get to added storage and counter space without the cost and hassle of a lengthy construction project. Sturdy lower cabinets are available in almost every style, from contemporary to traditional, and counter finishes can range from granite to stainless steel.

Are you finding your pantry and cabinets are overflowing? This option is a great solution with open storage on either side for cook books and spices, as well as large pull-out drawers for small appliances and cooking bowls. With a drop leaf extension, you can choose to add space for eating when guests arrive.

In addition to providing more work space to cook up your favorite dishes, an added island can work wonders with providing seating when needed. With a stowaway table, bottle storage, open shelving, cabinet storage, pullout drawers and towel racks, this island packs a ton of function and storage into a compact island.

2. Movable Kitchen Island

Like the idea of a free-standing kitchen island, but not quite ready to commit to something semi-permanent just yet? A variety of movable kitchen islands are available on casters and are a versatile choice for both placement and use. Budget-friendly and perfect for a narrow kitchen, a movable kitchen island instantly adds storage without the bulk. Roll it from your kitchen to the pantry or out to the patio to use during your next barbeque.

3. Kitchen Cart

A small cart can add valuable counter space even in the tiniest of kitchens. This foldable cart makes every inch count with open shelving and even a towel rack on the side for quick cleaning. With a bright color as a fun accent, this cart can go from kitchen prep space to a festive party bar cart in a flash. Either fold the cart and tuck it away for more walking room, or slide it off to the side for storage and easy access.

4. Utility Table

Not every kitchen needs a heavy island option—metal utility tables can also make wonderful, functional islands. Open shelving provides quick access to hard-to-store items or those beautiful heirloom bowls you’ve been dying to show off. Part vintage-inspired, part industrial, a utility table can blend in with a variety of kitchen designs while still giving your kitchen visual room to breathe. Pull up a few bar stools for an instant dinner celebration or slide it to the wall for decorative storage.

5. DIY Rustic Island

For a great DIY project that adds function and that All-American rustic charm, pair an antique find or a small farm table with your choice in countertop surface for a unique kitchen island. Not only will it add counter space and storage to your kitchen, it’ll be a statement piece that brings together the rest of the kitchen.

How have you added counter space to your small kitchen? Leave a note in the comments and let us know.


Interior design professional Kerrie Kelly provides homeowners with inspiring decor advice on kitchens for The Home Depot. Kerrie is an award-winning designer and the author of Home Decor: A Sunset Design Guide.