Chef's kitchens – 10 ways to create a kitchen fit for a cook (2024)

Chef's kitchens are the ultimate in luxury for any budding cook or food enthusiast. Technological advances in kitchen design mean that creating a professional or gourmet kitchen –once reserved for the best restaurants – at home is even easier to achieve than before.

These chef's kitchen ideas are our very favorites – you can save the images you love, then start the hard work: looking at everything, from the best kitchen storage and ergonomically sound designs – to how close your pantry is to your stove or oven (after all, you don’t want to end up walking the length of the room every time you need an ingredient).

Make sure your gourmet kitchen is chef-worthy with these tips and design tricks from the experts.

Chef's kitchens – everything you need to know to create a gourmet kitchen at home

If you’re using a kitchendesigner, they will be able to advise on a professional design that looks good and works perfectly, too.But, it always helps to go to them with your own kitchen ideas.

1. Plan for efficiency

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(Image credit: Tom Howley)

Complex cooking requires a kitchen layout focused on the economy of movement, with the ‘chef ’ at the center of the action.

‘My perfect home layout includes banked appliances, at eye-level, an island for entertaining and a well-stocked pantry,' says chef Galton Blackiston, brand ambassador for Tom Howley.

A good kitchen designer will be able to come up with solutions for the trickiest of spaces but if you feel you want to explore the room’s potential further, and are perhaps considering structural work, it is worth consulting an interior designer or architect.

2. Choose a double galley layout

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(Image credit: Future / Davide Lovatti)

Double galley kitchen ideas and layouts – or a single galley with a long island running parallel – are efficient, requiring only a few steps between prep, sink and cooking.

‘To make the cooking process seamless, every item should have a purpose and a place – you should be able to reach whatever you need almost without thinking about it so that you can focus on guests as well as cooking,’ advises Galton Blackiston.

3. Opt for fuss-free surfaces

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(Image credit: Roundhouse)

‘When planning your kitchen countertop ideas, avoid materials that can scratch or stain easily,’ says Allison Lynch, senior design consultant at Roundhouse, which has made domestic kitchens for several chefs including Yotam Ottolenghi and Peter Gordon.

‘We’d recommend man-made composite stone, like quartz or sintered stone, or stainless steel surfaces that are industrial in style and very hygienic as well as easy to use. This eliminates the stress of staining, and hot pans can go directly on them, too.’

4. Invest in a generous sink

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(Image credit: Mel Yates Interior / Designer: Rosalind Wilson)

A well-equipped kitchen sink with space either side for draining is useful. ‘Get the largest sink you can fit,’ advises chef and food writer Judi Rose, brand ambassador for Franke.

‘With today’s adds-ons like inset cutting boards, trivets and colanders, you needn’t sacrifice prep space, but a big sink can accommodate huge roasting pans and hide dirty pots when entertaining.’A double or 1.5 bowl model is more versatile than a single bowl, and an extra sink near the main prep area is useful for rinsing ingredients and washing hands.

The trend for industrial stainless steel countertops and sinks remains popular, particularly amid those seeking a professional cook’s kitchen, as chosen for this chef's kitchen by award-winning designer Rosalind Wilson, founder Rosalind Wilson Design.

5. Go for the best appliances you can afford

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(Image credit: Franke)

Cooking for crowds requires at least two high-capacity ovens. Eye-level designs are easiest to monitor progress, but many chefs prefer the volume and robustness of a range cooker.

‘Cook tops must be flexible and accommodate multiple pans. A combination of gas burners, steel plates and induction hobs will cover all bases, while features such as a teppanyaki and built-in grills are ideal for a dash of pro chef-style culinary theatre,’ says Camille Syren, chef de projects, La Cornue.

When designing a chef's kitchen, Eggersmann Design’s creative director Gary Singer often includes high-tech appliances like built-in steam ovens and vacuum-sealers for sous-vide cooking.

6. Ensure your chef's kitchen is organized

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(Image credit: Wolf)

Keeping a well-stocked food store is vital in busy restaurant kitchens and a generous larder cupboard or walk-in pantry is the perfect domestic equivalent.

‘A good chef will organize contents rigidly, making sure everything is easy to see, at a glance, so that ingredients can be gathered quickly,’ says chef and author Peter Sidwell, brand ambassador for Symphony Kitchens.

In the main kitchen, open shelves, wall-mounted knife blocks and ceiling-hung pan racks are similarly efficient in terms of speed and accessibility but do install a decent extractor to keep grease at bay.

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(Image credit: Alison Henry / Officine Gullo)

If you're looking for metal kitchen backsplash ideas that are hard-wearing, extremely heat-resistant and ultra-hygienic, a stainless-steel backsplash can withstand anything the busiest kitchen can throw at it.

Naturally, these surfaces have antimicrobial properties, which make them a good option for a gourmet or chef's kitchen.

8. Put kitchen lighting at the forefront

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(Image credit: Davide Lovatti)

Kitchen lighting ideas are an important part of any chef's kitchen, with functional and aesthetic illumination particularly important in a space that is used regularly for cooking and entertaining.

Chef's kitchens will need to include task, mood and feature lighting. Task lighting is the most practical and covers hardworking areas like the prep space, cooking area and the sink; mood lighting creates different atmospheres and feature lighting is eye-catching and can simply introduce a bit of ambiance – perfect for entertaining.

When choosing kitchen lighting close to food prep areas – and kitchen islands – it is vital that you get it right, first time. Getting it just right requires advance planning, especially on islands beyond two metres long. Determining what will happen on the island first will help plan exactly where you need illumination.

9. Maximize kitchen and pantry storage

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(Image credit: Future/ Paul Massey)

Clever kitchen storage and pantry organization ideas will maximize space to make the most of your chef's kitchen.

Getting a brilliant storage system in place will also mean that everything is always to hand so that you can access what you need swiftly. Tall, narrow pantries can be easily fitted into most kitchens and they're a good use of floor space.Alternatively, floor-to-ceiling shelving is a brilliant pantry organization tip. As long as you arrange them well, they will serve you well.

10. Provide a place for perching

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(Image credit: Smallbone / OWO)

Galley kitchen ideas are celebrated for their cooking efficiency but they’re usually found in enclosed rooms and therefore not the most sociable of arrangements. If you have sufficient length available, a banquette-style nook is a great way to provide somewhere for people to chat, without interrupting culinary progress. The key is to choose a table that won’t impede access into the heart of the kitchen.

Here, a built-in seat with storage above and below means the dining area doesn’t steal precious cupboard space, and the table and stools can easily be pushed in tight when not required.

What is a chef's kitchen?

The best chef’s kitchen will include kitchen layout ideas that focus on movement. A double galley layout with a long kitchen island running parallel is often the optimum choice for a chef.

Every item in your chef's kitchen should have a purpose to make the cooking and prep process as seamless – and fuss-free – as possible. Keep appliances at eye-level and make sure that you kitchen storage ideas are up to scratch, and the pantry fully-stocked with everything you need to host the perfect party or family dinner.

Chef's kitchens – 10 ways to create a kitchen fit for a cook (2024)


What makes a kitchen a chef's kitchen? ›

While no formal definition exists for a chef's kitchen, it can be described as a kitchen that has everything a professional chef would need. A chef's kitchen comes equipped with high-end appliances not usually found in a regular kitchen, abundant storage, and space to accommodate multiple people preparing a meal.

What is the best layout for a chef's kitchen? ›

The Chef's Triangle

Think of the movement between your workspace, sink, and garbage as a triangle, and keep them within close distance of each. If there is a breaking point in your movement from these locations it makes for less than efficient prep and cooking.

How do you set up a kitchen for cooking? ›

Tips for setting up your kitchen:
  1. Put your most-used cooking pans easily accessible near the oven & stove (check out this blog for creative storage solutions)
  2. Keep baking trays near the oven.
  3. Organize your dishes for ease. ...
  4. Spices should be in a dark, cool, and dry area of your kitchen (cabinet, pantry, etc)

What are 3 things chefs do? ›

Chefs and head cooks typically do the following:
  • Check the freshness of food and ingredients.
  • Supervise and coordinate activities of cooks and other food preparation workers.
  • Develop recipes and determine how to present dishes.
  • Plan menus and ensure the quality of meals.

What is the best kitchen shape for cooking? ›

U-shaped kitchens are great for large families or where multiple cooks will be working simultaneously in the space. This layout is also flexible. It can work in both long, narrow galley-style spaces, as well as large square spaces with a central island workstation.

What is the golden rule for kitchen design? ›

A Golden Rule for Kitchen Design

A kitchen work triangle is made up of three areas; the sink, cooktop, and refrigerator. By connecting these three areas within a certain length, you can create a more efficient kitchen design.

What makes a good kitchen layout? ›

Designing a kitchen layout depends on your workflow and the space available. Some tips for maximizing a kitchen layout's efficiency include reducing traffic, placing the stove on an exterior wall, ensuring enough space between main areas, and keeping vertical storage in mind.

How to fit a kitchen step by step? ›

  1. Prepare the room before you start. ...
  2. Mark out the walls. ...
  3. Start from one corner. ...
  4. Fix adjoining carcasses together. ...
  5. Secure base units to the wall. ...
  6. Attach the brackets for the wall units. ...
  7. Attach doors, plinths and kickboards. ...
  8. Install your worktop.
Feb 28, 2024

How do you set up a simple kitchen? ›

Place a shelf beside or behind the range to keep cooking oils, utensils, and spices handy. Plan your kitchen layout to include extra deep drawers for cookware near the range or under a cooktop. For a more open kitchen design, place S-hooks on the side of the range hood to hang frequently used pots and pans.

How to create a classic kitchen? ›

8 Elements of Classic Kitchen Style
  1. White or Cream Cabinetry. ...
  2. Simple Architectural Details. ...
  3. Honed Black Countertops. ...
  4. White Marble Countertops. ...
  5. White Subway Tile. ...
  6. Simple Door Styles, Not Too Modern, Not Too Ornate. ...
  7. Neutral Palettes. ...
  8. Flexibility.
Jul 22, 2019

How can I make my kitchen look professional? ›

Lighting plays an important role in creating a professional kitchen design. The right lighting can make a kitchen look brighter and more inviting. Natural light is always best, but if this is not available, you should consider installing task lighting and accent lighting.

What does a chef's home kitchen look like? ›

Features like roomy countertops and a kitchen island with space for several chefs to work side by side, state-of-the-art appliances—like a sub-zero refrigerator—a smart layout that allows quick access to tools, and an airy flow are just some of the many details that set a chef's kitchen apart from all the rest.

Who gets called chef in a kitchen? ›

The word "chef" is derived from the term chef de cuisine (French pronunciation: [ʃɛf də kɥizin]), the director or head of a kitchen. Chefs can receive formal training from an institution, as well as by apprenticing with an experienced chef.

What qualifies you to be called chef? ›

A chef is typically educated and often possesses a culinary degree. Chefs undergo classroom-style education and extensive kitchen training in apprenticeships to grasp the concepts and learn from someone with practical experience.

What does culinary mean in kitchen? ›

Culinary means having to do with cooking or the kitchen. If you go to culinary school, you're learning how to cook, most likely because you want to work as a chef. If you have a culinary streak, you might love cooking for your friends or maybe just watching cooking shows on TV.


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