The working triangle is a well-known theory to consider when designing the layout of your kitchen. It states that you should allow for 1200mm between your fridge, cooktop/oven and sink. This will allow you enough room to move around your kitchen with ease. However, you should also consider creating zones within your kitchen, to really maximise functionality.
We would recommend aiming to create five different zones within the kitchen; cleaning, cooking, preparation, consumable and non-consumable. At the end of the day, creating zones within the kitchen is all about grouping “like” items together to maximise functionality in a space that is used so frequently in the home.
Find out more about each zone:
- cleaning zone - sink, bin and dishwasher
- cooking zone - stove, oven and other appliances
- preparation zone - bench space
- consumables zone - fridge and pantry
- non-consumable zone - pots, pans and other accessories
- speciality zone - bonus space
The cleaning zone should include your sink, dishwasher and bins (including recycling, compost and general waste). It is also a good idea to store plates, mugs, glasses and cutlery close by as this will make cleaning up and putting away crockery that you use on a daily basis much quicker and more convenient.
The cooking zone should include your cook top, oven and other cooking appliances such as a microwave. This area should also include pot drawers or a place to store pots and pans, as well as drawers at arm’s reach to store wooden spoons and cooking utensils.
This is where you will prepare food, chop vegetables, peel potatoes, you name it! For ease and convenience, you will want utensils such as kitchen knives, chopping boards, bowels, spices and oils within close proximity to this space. If space permits, you will want a generous stretch of un-broken bench space, so that more than one person can be in the kitchen to help prepare food at any given time.
The fridge and pantry will house all of your consumable goods, including fresh produce, frozen food as well as dry goods. When it comes to putting away groceries and gathering food to prepare a meal, you don’t want to be walking from one end of the kitchen to the other, so placing your fridge and pantry within close proximity is a must!
You will also need to allocate space for non-consumable items, such as crockery, pots and pans, cutlery, bowls, glassware, tea towels. Make sure to carefully consider the location and what you place in these drawers or cupboards and ensure they are conveniently positioned.
If you have more space to play with, you can even consider including a bonus zone. This could be an area of the kitchen dedicated to making coffee, a breakfast bar or cocktail/wine bar with a wine fridge, glasses or bottle opener. You could even make this space multifunctional, creating an area to work from home if you need.
The concept of the five-zone kitchen is all about making your kitchen a more usable and enjoyable space to spend time in. It is a modern way of cooking and entertaining, allowing for more than one chef in the kitchen!