/ Layouts

Deciding Where to Cook and Clean


Always a hot place to be, the cooking zone is where fire enters the picture. Centered around the range or cooktop, this is the spot where stir-frys, spaghetti, and sauces sizzle. You may want to keep your microwave and toaster oven here as well. Include:

  • Deep drawers for pans

  • Shallower drawer for pot lids

  • Spice drawer (or cleverly hidden racks in pull out corbels that flank the cooktop)

  • Microwave cabinet for concealing and saving countertop space

  • Utensil drawer for spatulas and spoons


Anchored by your sink and dishwasher, the cleaning area is the home of water and washing. Be sure to keep "water dependent products" like your coffeemaker and salad spinner nearby. You'll also be emptying the last bits of lasagna and soup into containers here, so keep storage supplies nearby. Include space for an adequate number of cleaning and drying supplies, as well as a convenient way to store clean dishware. Include:

  • Pullout rack to neatly tuck dishtowels

  • Plate rack for storing daily or occasional dinnerware

  • Undersink pullout for dishwashing detergent and cleaner

  • Tilt out sink tray for sponges and scrubbers

  • Foil box rack or drawer for aluminum foil, paper, and plastic wrap storage

  • Pullout drawer for Tupperware, divided for lids and containers


Don't forget about the "dining zone." Though there's a lot more flexibility involved with designing your eating area, consider adding easily accessible storage for tablecloths, placemats, napkins, or infrequently used china.