Knowledge Base

Different Types of Kitchen Islands

Kitchen islands can be a beautiful addition to your kitchen and solidify its functionality. What exactly is an island or peninsula and what are the differences? A kitchen island is a free standing set of cabinets usually in or towards the center of the kitchen while a peninsula is a set of cabinets connected to your other kitchen cabinets. Kitchen islands and peninsulas provide more storage, work space, and even a place to eat, as you have additional cabinets and counter top space. Peninsulas change the overall shape of your kitchen; L-shape kitchens become horseshoe and a horseshoe layout change into a G-shape design. While some companies sell pre-set islands, with RTA cabinets, you have the freedom to select your own combination of cabinets to build your perfect island. It is a growing trend to have different color/style cabinets for the island and kitchen cabinets. Although islands are a nice addition, it is not for every kitchen, as some simply don’t have space for it. A general rule to keep in mind is you want to have at least 36” – 40” of walkway space between your kitchen cabinets and island. Below are some of the most common types of islands.


Sink Island

A sink island usually encompasses having your sink, dishwasher, and several cabinets. Since most dish washers are 24” and sinks range from 30” – 36” these types islands are usually 54” – 96” in length. A common sink set is a trashcan cabinet, sink base cabinet, and dishwasher.


Kitchen Design Ideas - Sink Island Kitchen


Cooktop Island

There are many varieties for a cooktop island, but as its name suggest, it is an island with a cooktop and other cabinets. Some common combinations include a 30” – 36” cook top with a 9” spice rack on each side giving a total length of 48” – 54.” For the cooktop cabinet, you have the choice to have double doors or two drawers beneath it.


Kitchen Design Ideas - Cooktop Island Kitchen


Dining Island

Many homeowners are substituting dining tables with islands with extended countertops and stools to use as an eating area. A dining island it a set of cabinets with an extended countertop usually 10” – 12.” The extension usually occurs on the back side and sides of the island. The length will vary depending on your need, but generally you want to leave 30” per person.


Kitchen Design Ideas - Dining Island Kitchen


Storage Island

If you have a small kitchen and feel like you may not have enough storage space, a storage island will be your solution. It is simply an island to add more cabinets allowing you to store more items. This can be made up of drawer + door base cabinets, three drawer base cabinets, or a combination of both.


Kitchen Design Ideas - Storage Island Kitchen


The above are just a few examples of common islands, but don’t be common, make your kitchen unique! RTA cabinets allow you to customize your own island and you can use a combination of the above or build something entirely different.

If you have any questions regarding kitchen design, please feel free to email us at or call us at 855-929-8795 directly. Our designers will help make your dream kitchen come to true.