Figuring out the best way to plan your kitchen layout can sometimes be challenging. Do you have a galley kitchen you're designing but don't know how wide the aisles should be? Are galley kitchens suitable for those who love to cook and entertain?
We will answer these questions, among many others, throughout this post. Let's get into it!
In general, you want the aisles in a galley kitchen to be between four and six feet wide. Leaving enough space for walking and other appliances will give your room a less cramped feeling, even if it's still fairly narrow.
Layout-wise, you might want to keep your sink and refrigerator on one wall and your oven/stove on the opposite one.
As we start this article, we will cover all things galley kitchens and discuss how wide the aisles in yours should be. Whether you're building from the ground up, want to renovate, or need inspiration, we're here to offer some help. With that said, let's dive right into this topic below!
How Wide Should The Aisles Be In A Galley Kitchen?
You usually want to leave 4-6 feet of space for the aisles in a galley-style kitchen. Considering this layout will already be narrow, allowing enough room for walking, cooking, and storage is essential.
Typically, galley kitchens are for smaller spaces, like apartments, tiny homes, and even yachts. However, that doesn't mean you can't make the most of your design.
For example, having your aisles be six or more feet wide could allow for a makeshift island or larger appliances. Of course, you'd need closer to 13 feet of open space to install an island or extra counter, but if you want to get more from your kitchen, that could be a great idea.
It's also better to have your appliances spaced out correctly in a galley-style kitchen (whether it's on the wider side or not). Even if you live alone, you want your kitchen to be able to entertain and feel comfortable.
Are Galley Kitchens Typically Small?
Yes. It is expected that a galley kitchen will be smaller. Of course, that doesn't mean you can't still incorporate storage and other "normal" appliances into one.
As we mentioned, the aisles in a galley-style kitchen need to be between four and six feet. Giving your layout that much aisle space will make it feel bigger and allow for freer movement.
For example, if you have someone you like to cook with, six feet of aisle room is essential. If your galley kitchen has four-foot wide aisles, you're not going to be able to fit more people comfortably.
Therefore, if you can make your countertops less wide, this can open up more floor space.
Many chefs work upwards in a galley-style environment, so we recommend utilizing wall space over the square footage below. Hanging shelves or cabinetry above your countertops is one idea that comes to mind.
Can A Galley Kitchen Be Too Wide?
Although you can never have enough space in a kitchen, not planning a galley-style one properly can give it a less efficient design.
For example, if you have all the appliances in your kitchen on one side, separated by six or more feet of space, this isn't always sustainable.
In addition, you don't want to leave too much floor space without anything breaking it up. So, if your galley kitchen is 13 feet or wider, we recommend installing an island.
Doing this will improve your space's efficiency and create more countertop space and storage. Again, you don't need to do this to get the most from your kitchen, but it can help.
What Is A Good Size For A Galley Kitchen?
Generally, a galley kitchen should be for spaces that are 90 square feet or less. As we covered earlier, galley-style kitchens are typically smaller, meaning they work for tinier homes and spaces.
You wouldn't turn a massive kitchen into a galley, as this wouldn't be efficient or fall into an actual "galley" layout. Instead, focus on this option if you're low on space and want to make the most of it.
Additionally, you often see galley kitchens in apartments and on boats. That's because this kind of kitchen works vertically rather than horizontally and can make sense even in the smallest layouts.
What Are The Advantages Of Having A Galley Kitchen?
There are plenty of advantages to consider for those on the fence about building their galley kitchen. First, choosing a galley-style design is perfect for anyone with smaller square footage.
In addition, a galley kitchen works well as a centralized space for entertaining, sharing meals, and cooking up a storm with your friends and family.
According to design pros, galley kitchens are also easy to break up. That means having one become a separate work area for multiple people can be easier than a traditional design.
Another advantage of having a galley-style kitchen is that they're typically filled with vertical storage. Whether you have wall shelves, cabinets, or even racks hanging, your galley kitchen will impress.
From a cleaning perspective, galley-style kitchens are also easier to manage and keep tidy, as they're smaller and more organized by design.
What Are The Disadvantages Of Having A Galley Kitchen?
One of the main concerns with a galley-style kitchen is the size. As we said, a galley kitchen layout tends to be narrow, which can become an issue for mobility.
Furthermore, galley kitchens aren't always great for larger appliances, as they take up too much floor space. For example, if you have two ovens in your current kitchen, that might not be possible in a galley-style design.
The same goes for other details, like a kitchen island, which won't fit in a galley kitchen smaller than 13 feet wide. So, this can become a hassle for you and your designer.
Another disadvantage to having a galley kitchen is its ability to hold many people at once. Generally, unless your kitchen has wide aisles, you won't be able to fit more than two people at a time.
This all comes down to your cooking habits, storage needs, and design preference.
How Far Apart Should The Cabinets Be In A Galley Kitchen?
You typically want to leave 4-5 feet of room between the cabinets in a galley-style kitchen. Since the space between your cabinetry will become the aisles for you to walk through, it's best to give more room between everything.
You also want to try and keep your cabinets and counters on the thinner side so they don't take up too much of your kitchen.
Again, this doesn't mean you can't still enjoy ample counter space; you'll need to be more aware of how much space they take up.
Furthermore, installing an island with a sink or range on it towards the middle of a galley-style kitchen might be better, as this will free up the other countertops in your space.
You need room to prepare your meals, so a more open, unobstructed counter space is ideal.
Where Should I Put The Appliances In A Galley Kitchen?
Now that you know where your cabinets should be, it's time to focus on the appliances.
Generally, experts recommend placing your refrigerator on one end, a pantry (if there is one), wall ovens on the other, and then your sink and stove across from each other towards the middle.
However, you don't have to follow this exact formula, but doing so can make your space feel more efficient and comfortable to be in.
Since your fridge will be one of the largest additions, we recommend tucking it away if possible. Your dishwasher might be able to go under the counters without creating an issue, but try and keep it away from your refrigerator.
Usually, the fridge should be on its own to keep it from overheating.
How Do I Make A Galley-Style Kitchen Feel Bigger?
Adding natural lighting is one of the best ways to make a galley kitchen feel more significant. Design experts recommend cutting back on your window treatments, allowing more light to enter your kitchen.
Furthermore, it's also beneficial to use softer, brighter colors for your walls, cabinets, counters, and appliances to reflect that natural light.
Generally, darker hues work to create a moodier, cozier aesthetic, which you want to avoid in your galley-style kitchen. You can also try adding vertical storage space, like wall shelves, to give your kitchen a larger feeling.
The trick here is getting your space uncluttered and as light and bright as possible.
Are Galley Kitchens A Good Idea?
Overall, we agree that having a galley kitchen is a good idea for smaller spaces. Not only do these kitchen designs make cooking easy for single people, but they also force you to become a pro at organizing.
As we said, galley kitchens are great for vertical storage and can become entertainment areas with proper design. With that said, if you have a larger space with square footage, that's when a galley kitchen doesn't make much sense.
Instead, you might want to focus more on a traditional style, as that will be more efficient.
To Finish It All Up
Whether you have a galley-style kitchen or want to create one, it's always good to know your measurements. From what we found, the aisles in a galley kitchen need to be between four and six feet wide so that you can move around comfortably.
Furthermore, you'll need at least 13 feet of space for an island, so if your kitchen is bigger, that's certainly worth trying. Galley kitchens tend to be narrow and lack floor space, so it's best to create vertical storage.
Regardless, don't be afraid to get creative and have fun designing your kitchen!
Made it this far? Check out these helpful related kitchen articles below:
How Wide Should The Gap Be Between Slide-In Stove And Wall?