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Two-Cook Kitchens – Essential Design & Layout Tips

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We have all heard the phrase “There are too many cooks in the kitchen!”, and for busy households, that can be a daily struggle. When juggling cooking meals around an overbooked schedule, helping kids with homework, or simply wanting a helping hand for prepping food for dinner, having a kitchen that can accommodate numerous people without disaster is a priority in many homes.

While too many cooks in the kitchen is rarely ideal, that doesn’t mean that two cooks is one too many! With a bit of ingenuity and an eye towards creative design, you can remodel and rework your kitchen space so it is actually a joy rather than a hindrance to have extra people giving you a hand with meal preparation. The two biggest considerations are the layout of the space and the appliances and features that you choose for the kitchen when want to create a streamlined environment that the whole family can enjoy spending time in.

Focus on Layout

Often the biggest compliant that homeowners have about their kitchens is an inefficient use of space, which makes taking the time to really examine and plan-out the layout of the room essential to make cooking easy for two or more people. Whether you are planning a complete gut-and-remodel project in the kitchen or simply want to change-up a few key areas to create better flow within the room, consider adding in the following features:

  • Central Islands: Islands are the perfect place for prepping food, giving you additional workspace, and storing extra kitchen utensils and appliances in built-in cabinets. They also can save a lot of hassle with two cooks taking part in dinner preparations! When choosing an island, look for one that flows with the existing space of the room and is large enough that both chefs have the space needed to get the work done without bumping elbows.
  • Cooking Stations: One of the most ingenious ways to make cooking with others more pleasant is to set-up separate cooking stations within a large kitchen! If one of you loves to bake while the other prefers cooking, create two distinct areas that have the space, supplies, and storage to accommodate the different needs.
  • Seating Space: If two cooks are in the kitchen in a busy household, chances are that there are also guests or children that also want to be involved! This can quickly lead to a cluttered-feeling space, so when planning the layout, make sure to include room for extra seating. An overhanging bar on a central island is perfect for pulling up bar stools, and utilizing an awkward nook by adding a homework desk is great for keeping kids close-by—without them being in the way.

Upgrade Your Appliances and Fixtures

The kitchen isn’t functional without appliances, from big-ticket items like a fridge and oven to smaller, countertop appliances that make cooking just a bit easier. Once you have the layout nailed down for your new kitchen, take a hard look at how you can upgrade your appliances and other kitchen features to make them easy to use so more than one cook to participate:

  • Sinks: Dual sinks can be a lifesaver if you have two or more cooks prepping and preparing meals. Consider adding a prep sink to your central island to create a full prepping station, or add a triple-basin sink with multiple faucets to give everyone the room they need to get the job done efficiently.
  • Ovens and Cooktops: Traditional ranges are the standard in many homes, but current trends are leaning towards separate ovens and cooktops in the kitchen—which is a big plus for multiple cooks in one space! Installing an oven and cooktop in separate areas of the kitchen allow for individual prep and prevent a pile-up of helpers hovering around one hot range.
  • Dishwashers: Dishwashers are a kitchen lifesaver in many homes, and it is worth considering adding a second dishwasher in a household with a large family and multiple cooks. For extra-easy workflow, create a separate clean-up station in the kitchen that doesn’t take up room where you’ll be doing all of the cooking!
  • Appliance Garages: As an on-trend kitchen addition that serves multiple functions, appliance garages are a great choice for busy households. Not only does a built-in appliance garage keep your counter space clear to use for prepping and cooking, but it also ensures that all of your needed appliances are ready to go whenever you need them.

Having many different cooks in the kitchen can be downright disastrous in a space that isn’t built for a smooth flow and multiple chefs, but it doesn’t have to be! Now more than ever, families are going back to their roots to work together to create home-cooked, daily meals, and taking the time to consider what you need to change to streamline the layout and features of your space is a recipe for creating treasured family memories. Stick to these tips and you’ll create a great two-cook kitchen to enjoy together.

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