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The Kitchen Island Features Every Island Should Have

The kitchen island is the heart of the kitchen, at least it should be with the right design. In fact, the kitchen island can be the hardest working feature in your kitchen. Take a look at the kitchen island features design experts say every island needs.


Seating is one of the most important features of a kitchen island. Most kitchen islands feature seating on the backside of the island. The countertop is typically raised higher on this side to be bar height, 42 inches. The seating area should also have a 12 to 18-inch overhang for knee space and there should be at least 24 inches of space between each seat.

Double-sided Storage

Most islands have storage on the interior side, but today’s experts recommend adding additional cabinets on the backside of the island. This added storage is especially helpful in kitchens with no upper cabinets.


Building code requires at least one outlet but we recommend adding more. For instance, you can add an outlet on the backside or side of the island for charging devices if your island will be used as a homework or work-from-home space.

Secondary Fridge

The kitchen island is the perfect spot for a beverage fridge or fridge drawer for refrigerated snacks. A secondary fridge keeps disruption from the main work triangle of the kitchen. Place the fridge near the end of the island, away from the prep and workspace



This is a homeowner’s favorite when it comes to kitchen island features. Placing the microwave in the island frees up valuable counter space and it comes in handy when the island is used as a prepping area. And like adding a secondary fridge to the island, a microwave feature in the island keeps the main work triangle flowing.

Highly Durable Countertop Material

Some experts would say that a durable countertop material is the key to a high-functioning kitchen island. Engineered quartz is a favorite among designers for its heat and stain resistance. Another favorite is Neolith, a sintered stone product that can resemble stone, slate, and even Calacatta marble. Neolith is so durable that it’s a popular choice for outdoor kitchen countertops.

Prep Sink

If you’re not planning on having your main sink in your island, a secondary prep sink is a great option instead. We recommend positioning it to one edge of the countertop, preferably near the refrigerator. Placing it on the side keeps the workspace open while adding convenience to cooking preparation.

Pullout Trash and Recycling Bin

This feature is especially useful if your kitchen island is your main work and prep space. Plus, a pullout bin makes for easy cleanup.

Targeted Lighting

Poor lighting ruins an otherwise great workspace. We recommend a layered effect of recessed and undercabinet lighting, and perhaps decorative pendants.

Your Own Custom Feature

Adding your own personal touch turns your island from the one you like into one you love! Think shelving for cookbooks or perhaps a lift for a stand mixer!

Are you ready to see what your custom kitchen island will look like? We want to help you design the kitchen and kitchen island of your dreams. Click here to get started by requesting a free project quote.


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