25 Simple Hacks to Make a Small Kitchen Look Bigger

Are you wondering how to make a small kitchen look bigger?

Today’s post is a collaboration article between myself and the fabulous Rachel at Fresh Design Blog on a topic that I know so many of you are desperate for. 

Read on for our 25 top tips on making the most of your small kitchen to make it feel more spacious.

Look up kitchen ideas on Pinterest and you’ll invariably find gorgeous show home style kitchens, with masses of space and large kitchen islands.

In a lot of homes the reality is sadly somewhat different and your kitchen may well be a lot smaller than these.

But if you’re stuck with a narrow galley kitchen or a small square kitchen, don’t despair – there are ways that you can make it feel a bit bigger.

Here’s an insight into some of the clever design tricks you can employ!

25 Hacks to Make a Small Kitchen Feel Bigger:

1. Savvy storage

Open shelving is all the rage, but it only works well in a small kitchen if you’re super tidy. One open shelf to display your favourite cups and saucers is fine, but for all your essential crockery, keep it stored in cupboards, not scattered around on lots of open shelves.

A small kitchen looks bigger if it’s neat, tidy and uncluttered.

2. Glass cupboard doors

Image: Mereway

Whilst you don’t want the contents of all your cupboards exposed, it is a good idea to consider replacing some of the cupboard doors in your kitchen with glass fronts.

The idea is that the glass will naturally draw the eye in, making the wall feel like it’s further away. Just remember to keep those cupboards tidy, so you can actually see into the back of the cupboard!

3. Clever colour palette

Image: Woodworks Brighton

When it comes to the ideal colour palette, the best option to help make a small kitchen feel bigger is to use light colours and in a low contrast palette.

Forget having dark walls or black cupboards which will make the room feel even more enclosed and instead opt for light colours, such as white, soft grey and cream.

You don’t have to everything in the room exactly the same colour, just try and choose colours from the same families, such as different shades of white.

4. Shiny surfaces

Mirrors are great for helping small rooms look bigger, but aren’t the most practical accessory for a kitchen wall.

Instead, you can gain similar benefits from adding shiny surfaces – think shiny stainless steel kitchen appliances, glass tiles, gloss cabinet finishes or shiny sparkling floors.

5. Maximise light

Image: Purlfrost

Making your kitchen feel light and airy can help it feel bigger too. Make the most of any windows you have by keeping window treatments minimal.

Add a blind to match your light colour palette, or try using window film to give you privacy, whilst still allowing plenty of light to flow through.

6. Floor illusions

Your flooring can effect how big your kitchen looks, so get crafty and create some visual illusions.

Using geometric patterns or stripes on your floor can help your room look longer or wider than it really is.

If you aren’t able to change your current flooring, then you can create a similar effect by adding a patterned or striped floor rug or runner.

7. Minimalist fittings

Image: Novy Cooker Hood

They’re a necessary part of many kitchens, but fittings such as cooker hoods can be bulky and ungainly. If your kitchen is short on space, try and opt for the most minimalist cooker hood you can find.

Choose one with a shiny surface, and you’ll get double the benefits!

8. Slimline furniture

Image: Magnet Kitchens

If you have space for a small table and chairs in your kitchen, choose slimline options to avoid the space from getting too cluttered.

Opt for furniture that can easily be folded down when not in use, and chairs with cut-out backs so the light still flows through.

9. Use the Height in your Small Kitchen

Image: Higham

Whilst you may not be blessed with much floor space, you will probably have a good amount of height in the room. Make use of it. 

If you’re able to add more cupboard storage to your walls, take it as high as you can. You might need foldable steps so you can access the top shelves, but just make sure you store items you rarely use in these areas.

10. Use Lots of Layered Lighting

It’s a simple way to bring a small kitchen to life – add lots of layered lighting. So put lights on the walls, along the floor, add a lamp to a work surface and use hanging lights too. 

11. Keep Your Surfaces Clutter Free

It’s the simplest small kitchen hack: keep your countertops free from clutter. Put as many items away in cupboards as you can, but when space runs out, keep your work surfaces organised and well maintained. 

Products like the Joseph Joseph utensils set above keeps all your cooking essentials clean and tidy in one place. 

12. Make the Most of Bare Walls with Clever Storage Solutions

I’m a hug fan of creative storage solutions for a small kitchen, so when you don’t have much space use the bare walls to add visual interest and practical storage for items like magazines, notebooks, letters and kitchen essentials. 

A wire storage basket like those above, look great in a rustic kitchen, a country kitchen and a more industrial kitchen look too.

13. Use Hanging Rails for Cups and Crockery

Whilst you don’t want to clutter your small kitchen too much, adding a single, stylish rail to hang cups or kitchen utensils from will keep your worktops clutter free and add visual interest to the small area too. 

Just remember to keep your colour palette simple and not overcrowd your small space with too many clashing colours. 

14. Grow your Herbs from the Ceiling!

One of our main hacks for a small kitchen is to keep your windowsill as streamlined as possible. That means, if you love growing herbs for cooking, why not use these hanging containers to keep shelves, worktops and windowsills empty.

15. Use Glass Containers for Food Storage on Open Shelves

We love open shelving for our small kitchen, but this hack is often forgotten.

Use glass or perspex jars and containers for your groceries. Why?

The reflective surfaces help to bounce the light around the room, creating an illusion of more space. It’s a super simple hack that all tiny kitchen lovers should use.

If you really want to get organised, why not do some crafting and make these Cricut kitchen labels for your jars?

16. Fit in a Purpose Built Table and Chairs

If you live in a small home with a tiny kitchen, a kitchen table and chairs might seem like a luxury you have to do without.

But some small kitchens lend themselves to incorporating a bespoke table and chairs. Often this means using the table for a food preparation area, and having a bench (that can also double up as storage) along one wall. 

17. Make the Most of your Corner Cupboard Storage

When you live in a tiny kitchen, it’s important to use up as much of the space as possible. 

That means creative storage solutions in all of your cupboards. Remember to make the most of a corner cupboard with pull out or rotating shelves that let you make the most of the cupboard area.

18. Create a Stylish Wall Storage Area for your Cooking Essentials

19. Keep Walls Light and Floors Bright

20. Try a Portable Food Storage Unit



22. Keep the Window Treatments the Same Colour as the Walls


23. A Striking Monochrome Floor is Simple and Eye Catching

24. Coordinate your Floor to your Cupboard Doors


If you’re looking for more ways to decorate your small home, you’ll also enjoy 27 Small Home Interior Design Tricks, 50 Ways to Decorate a Small Bedroom and Big Ideas for Small Cloakrooms.

If you’ve enjoyed this post, I’d love you to share the image below to your Pinterest board:

Images: Small kitchen via Shutterstock

Jen Stanbrook
Jen Stanbrook

Jen is an award winning digital publisher and has been creating interiors and home decor content for over 10 years.
She has an insatiable love of home interiors, has worked with hundreds of brands, and currently supports many bloggers within the creative industries to share their expertise through writing.
She spends most of her time in her little garden office pod, has 2 daughters and 2 (fighting) cats.

Find me on: Web | Twitter | Instagram

1 Comment

  1. Sidney Wiley
    August 30, 2017 / 3:57 pm

    Having lots of sunlight is essential for me. Also try and stay minimalist as possible. People often tend to cluster their rooms with lots of unused things that only take place.

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