Kitchens large and small can benefit from the added seating and functionality of a kitchen island or breakfast bar. When you improve the workspace in your kitchen with the additional work surface and storage provided by a breakfast bar or island, you make your kitchen more comfortable and inviting.
The ideal kitchen design is the product of a thoughtful layout and the color and style of your cabinetry. With the addition of a shaker kitchen island or breakfast bar, you improve the countertop and storage space and ensure the timelessness of your kitchen.
How to improve your kitchen with a white shaker kitchen island
Depending on the style and selection of countertop material, a kitchen island can add between $600 – $5,000 to your total renovation cost.
A kitchen design that correctly places the kitchen island is essential to improve your workflow. You need at least 48” of unimpeded space for a path between the island and the wall or adjacent countertop. This distance allows people to move around the island easily and walk behind someone working at the island. The distance also ensures that all cabinet doors and drawers can open without any limitations.
A kitchen island with a counter height between 30” – 36” is best for food prep. You could consider designing the kitchen island with a raised breakfast bar on one side to separate the countertop into two distinct areas.
Dress up the kitchen island with a quartz or granite countertop
You can dress up a white kitchen island or keep it more casual, depending on your style. With a Shaker island, you can bring modern, contemporary, or traditional design elements and decor to fit your personality and the rest of your home. With a quartz or granite countertop, you can choose a subtle pattern and color or add movement and contrast with a stronger color.
Quartz countertop is naturally resistant to stains, scratches, and heat. This material is also easy to maintain with just mild soap and water. You can customize colors and patterns to your decor because it’s a manufactured stone and resin composite.
Granite countertops are natural stone, often cut from a single slab to maintain a consistent look throughout the kitchen. Each color and pattern is unique to the individual slab. Granite is also scratch-resistant but can be susceptible to high heat and does require yearly sealing to maintain its protective surface.
With a white kitchen island, you can easily pair either quartz or granite countertops in various patterns and colors to achieve the look you want in your kitchen.
Not every kitchen is suited for a full-size island. In a smaller kitchen, a breakfast bar may be more favorable to your space.
For diners to sit comfortably at the island, you should have an overhang of 8” – 10” and allow 24” per place setting. This will allow your family and guests ample elbow and legroom.
A kitchen island is a perfect space for extra storage of larger appliances, pots, pans, and trash containers. You can add drawers and other in-cabinet accessories like pull-out shelves, organize what you store on the island, and make it easy to retrieve kitchen utensils, dishware, and appliances. If you prefer to use the island for dining, you can keep the open space underneath for more legroom and storage of your stools when not in use.
Improve your kitchen with a breakfast bar
You can include a breakfast bar in even the smallest of kitchens by adding a peninsula to the end of your existing countertop. With a breakfast bar instead of a full island, you add seating on one side and gain more countertop space on the other. You could add a peninsula with base cabinets and additional storage space as well.
A breakfast bar has the advantage of costing less than a full island. The typical cost is between $250 – $2,300, depending on style and cabinet quality. If you already have a kitchen island, you can convert it to a breakfast bar by adding a countertop with an overhang for extra dining and stools for seating.
Four white Shaker island designs for your kitchen
This kitchen design features two-tone countertops in black, gray, and white granite, with a white Shaker island and cabinets. The island provides extra storage with a full cabinet at the end.
This large white Shaker island has an entire side dedicated to seating and a bookshelf for cookbook storage. The gray countertops add a neutral element to play up other colors in the kitchen.
This kitchen design has a white Shaker island with seating and includes drawers off one end for extra storage. The white quartz countertop and white cabinets offer appealing contrast to the dark hardwood flooring.
This white Shaker island features a beautiful quartz waterfall countertop in white and gray. With its extra overhang, there is plenty of seating and dining options.
Four breakfast bar designs for your kitchen
Consider keeping the space on the end of your breakfast bar for legroom and dining. This breakfast bar also has a set of drawers to improve storage in a small kitchen.
Add a contrasting breakfast bar to your Shaker cabinets as they did in this kitchen. The dark brown makes a bold statement while adding a comfortable sitting area and countertop for food prep.
Even the smallest breakfast bar can add additional color. This small kitchen has white shaker cabinets accented with a waterfall quartz countertop in white and gray. The breakfast bar adds ample seating while housing cabinetry on the kitchen side.
This cute breakfast bar with white Shaker cabinets seats two comfortably and incorporates a bookshelf for extra storage. The white quartz countertop contrasts nicely with the dark hardwood floor to make this kitchen really pop.
Add a white Shaker island or breakfast bar to your kitchen
With extra seating, storage, and workspace, you can transform your average kitchen into your dream kitchen: A white Shaker island or breakfast bar makes it possible. The versatility of white Shaker cabinetry in both color and style allows it to fit seamlessly into any home decor. To start your kitchen upgrade today, browse our gallery of white shaker cabinets and visit one of our expert designers to design your new kitchen.