Kitchen Island vs Kitchen Table

green shaker kitchen island

In the quest to design the perfect kitchen, one of the first things to consider is whether you would like a kitchen island or a kitchen table. It is possible to include both a kitchen island and a kitchen table if the kitchen is large enough although most people will need to decide between the two.

There are many benefits to having a kitchen island – it provides extra workspace, extra storage and can act as a hub for the kitchen for people to gather. However, kitchen islands may not always be the best solution. For those lacking space, or who simply do not need the extra storage or worktop, another great option is a kitchen table.

The decision between island vs table will depend largely on your personal lifestyle and how the kitchen space will be used. Think about who will be using the kitchen – is it for one person, a couple or a family? If the kitchen is the centre of a family home, a kitchen island may make sense as it acts as a central point – the same applies if you regularly host guests. A kitchen table can create a more formal setting compared to the island and can also be helpful at keeping a designated space away from the kitchen.

Ultimately, whether you opt for a kitchen island or kitchen table, both have their advantages and disadvantages. The key factor is that it enables families and friends to sit and eat together.





A clear advantage of a kitchen island is that it doubles up as a storage space. For those looking to store many things, an island can be a neat way to do this and maximise space in the kitchen. Kitchen islands are a way to add cabinets and drawers as well as shelves. They can even neatly tuck away appliances such as small fridges and dishwashers or house a second sink.



A table tends to have more seating capacity than the typical island. Kitchen tables may be more comfortable when actually sitting down to eat or doing activities such as working from home or homework. However, seating at a kitchen island is usually in the heart of the action.

Kitchen islands can provide a more informal seating arrangement perfect for those looking to encourage guests or family members to sit in the kitchen during the food preparation.

Kitchen tables lend themselves to more flexibility when it comes to choice of dining chairs whereas islands typically will need bar-stools which may be less comfortable.


kitchen seating



The decision between a kitchen table and kitchen island will influence the tone of the food preparation and dining area and has the potential to change the atmosphere.

To keep food preparation and dining as two distinct things, a kitchen table is probably a better choice. For families this helps keep children out of the way of the cooking and can be a designated space for homework, office work and later a family meal. For those who have guests over, this can be a good designated space for guests to hang out and socialise whilst the cooking is going on.

A kitchen island creates a more inclusive atmosphere as it blends food preparation and dining means that whoever is in charge of the cooking can be with the rest of the family or the guests and join in the conversation. Often, a kitchen island is a great way of creating a sociable atmosphere in the home.


Frequency of Cooking

The usage of your kitchen will play a big role in determining whether an island or kitchen table works better for your needs. For example, kitchen islands double up as an extra space for food preparation, storage and even a second sink. Thus, for those who are regular cooks, this can be an invaluable extra space.

However, for those who cook less frequently and who cook more simple recipes with less preparation and fewer ingredients, they may find that a kitchen table is a better use of space and that they do not need any further room for food preparation.


two toned shaker kitchen



In an open-plan living space, kitchen tables can allow more flexibility in terms of floorspace, functionality and design. Not only do they provide a designated dining area, they can also save space. The open space under kitchen tables can be viewed as less bulky as a kitchen island and can create the illusion of a larger floor plan.

Kitchen tables in an open-plan space can also help to define and separate different areas which can result in a less chaotic set-up. Those with an extension leaf could be the perfect solution for accommodating gatherings of different sizes.