Standard Counter Height: What’s The Best Size For Your Kitchen Island

Whether you’re just starting to think about remodeling your kitchen or are already in the planning stages, deciding on the dimensions of your kitchen island is an important step. 

Although there are several factors to consider, a standard counter height is usually the best size for most homeowners.

Let’s take a look at why this sizing works well and some of the other things you’ll need to keep in mind when designing your kitchen.

A wooden kitchen island with a quartz counter and wood stools

What is the standard counter height for kitchen islands?

Standard counter height is typically between 36 and 48 inches, which is high enough to provide ample workspace but low enough to be comfortable for people of all heights. 

This makes it a good size for kitchen islands, as it allows for plenty of space to cook and prep food while still being within reach.

If you’re unsure of what standard counter height is, measure the size of your current countertops and choose an island that’s similar in height. 

This will ensure that you’ll have a comfortable work area with plenty of storage space below.

benefits of a standard counter Height For your kitchen island

A standard counter height can provide a comfortable workspace for food preparation, baking, and cooking. It can also be used as an eating area or a place to gather with friends and family.

Additionally, a standard counter height can help to create a more open and spacious feeling in your kitchen.

A kitchen with tile flooring, a gray kitchen island, and plastic stools

What should My Counter Height Be?

Although a standard counter height is usually the best size for most homeowners, it’s essential to consider your own needs and preferences when designing your kitchen.

If you’re super cramped in your kitchen and you want to open space a little bit, you may want to choose an island with a flexible work surface that can increase prep area. This will give you enough room to move around and prep work.

On the other hand, if you’re looking for extra storage space, you may want to consider an island with built-in cabinets or shelves. This will help keep your counters clear and give you a place to store pots, pans, and all the appliances.

If you’re going with a full custom island, you should choose something at least 3′ wide and 4′ long. This will give you plenty of surface area for cooking and prepping and room for storage or seating if needed.

Just be sure to consider the width of your kitchen counters and appliances when making your final decision.

How much counter space do you need for small kitchens?

If you’re working with a small kitchen, a standard counter may not be the best size for your island. However, depending on how you use your kitchen, a kitchen designer can even help you with an interior design to accommodate an island into less space.

According to NKBA guidelines, a total of 158 inches of countertop frontage, 24 inches deep, and at least 15 inches of clearance above your countertop should be enough to accommodate all its uses.

When it comes to the length of your kitchen island, you can choose whatever serves you. 

However, you should know after about 12′ long, things tend to get uncomfortable. It is often recommended a 4′ x 8′ island, as it gives you enough work surface for preparing food and fits all the storage you need.

A green kitchen island with a white marble countertop and cozy chairs

How to determine the best counter height?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as the best size for your kitchen island will depend on your individual needs and space constraints. However, you can do a few things to determine the right size for your island.

How to choose the right island for your kitchen?

When choosing the right island for your kitchen, keep a few things in mind.

Consider the space you have available

Islands come in all shapes and sizes. There’s not a minimum space to use or minimum dimensions to comply with, so there’s one kitchen island that will fit your needs. Measure the distance you have between your kitchen counter and the island. You want to make sure there is at least 36 inches of space so that people can move comfortably around it.

Consider your needs

Another thing to consider is the amount of storage space the island offers. If you plan to use your island as a gathering spot for food preparation and cooking, you’ll need plenty of storage for utensils, ingredients, and cookware. A general rule is to choose an island with at least as much storage as you have on your countertops.

Think about your style

Consider the style of your kitchen design. Islands can be a great way to add a pop of color or texture, so make sure you choose one that will complement your existing design.

Now that you know what to consider when choosing your island, here are a few of our favorite options:

A kitchen island with quartz counter and faces in a kitchen with golden features

Additional features you may want to include on your island

When it comes to kitchen islands, the possibilities are endless. But before you start a kitchen remodel, there are a few features you’ll want to keep in mind.

For example, do you need extra space? If so, choose an island with ample cabinet or drawer space. Are you looking for a place to eat? You may want to consider an island with a built-in breakfast bar.

Additional features to consider include:

What else should I think about when choosing a kitchen island?

Before designing your new kitchen, make sure you answer every question that might help you make the right decision. Some of the questions are:

Once you answer all these questions, you’ll have a personal overview of what your kitchen island should be like. If you still don’t know where to start, it’s better to look for a professional who can customize your island to your needs and preferences.


Kitchen islands are a popular addition to many homes, and for a good reason. They provide enough space that can be used as a dining area and add an element of style to the kitchen. It also gives you a nice sized kitchen you can enjoy with your loved ones.

When deciding on the dimensions of your modern kitchen island, it’s essential to keep a few things in mind. A standard counter height is usually the best size for most homeowners, but you’ll want to make sure that the island isn’t too large or too small for your needs.

When choosing an island for your kitchen, it’s essential to consider various factors, including the amount of storage space, the style of your kitchen, and additional features you may want.

If you’re not sure where to start or need help to design your kitchen island, get in touch. Our team of experts would be happy to assist you.

A minimalist wooden island with a plant behind it and white kitchen cabinets