The Key to Organized Kitchen Designs: Work Zones

Sub-Zero, Wolf, and Cove kitchen

A well-designed space reflects its inhabitants—and this rings particularly true in the kitchen. Laying out a kitchen around zones, rather than calculating a precise sink-refrigerator-stove triangle, allows you to address the household’s cooking and lifestyle preferences.


An efficient work zone locates everything needed to perform a particular function within a self-contained area. The core zones every kitchen needs are preparation, cooking, cleaning, and storage. A prep zone, for example, should include a large work surface (often the kitchen island); drawers for knives, peelers, and other tools; and a trash receptacle.


Beyond the basics, you can add or expand zones as needed. A flexible, zone-based approach to layout easily adapts to a variety of end-user profiles, such as these:

The Entertainer

A well-thought-out entertaining zone, typically centered on the kitchen island, will reduce party-time stress for the frequent entertainer. Not only can guests perch on stools there, but the island also offers a convenient surface for serving. Store platters and other entertaining accouterments in the cabinets below and consider incorporating an under-counter wine refrigerator or beverage center.

The Family

In many homes, cooking has become a family affair. The key to designing a kitchen for multiple cooks is to avoid logjams by differentiating tasks. One family member can be chopping at the island, while another is sautéing at the range. It often helps to double up—maybe add a second cooktop to the island or perhaps a prep sink. Establish a separate zone, away from the cooking hustle and bustle, where young kids can do homework and enjoy snacks.

The Baker

A dedicated baking zone will make life easier for the prolific baker. This zone should include a work surface and storage for measuring cups, a rolling pin, baking sheets, and so forth. Ideally, position it close to both the pantry and oven. To augment the range and expand capacity, build a wall oven into your plan.

A customized zone-based strategy fits today’s modern lifestyle and caters to a household’s specific priorities. A Friedman’s expert can help you populate each kitchen zone with the perfect appliances.

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