Galley Kitchen Ideas to Make the Most of What You Have

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A galley kitchen is a kitchen with a long and narrow layout. Despite their bad reputation, galley kitchens offer many advantages due to their ergonomic layout and ability to fit into different sized homes. A galley kitchen is a great way to maximize kitchen space in a small space. Plus, you don’t have to sacrifice style to achieve it. There are creative ways to maintain the high style of your galley kitchen while making the most of its practical shape.

What is a galley kitchen?

Galley kitchens are named for their resemblance to ship kitchens, which require a streamlined shape due to limited space. Galley kitchens became popular in his 20th century, when the kitchen began to be integrated from a separate room into other parts of the house. Its streamlined look and modular style made it a popular kitchen style in the mid-20th century.

What is a galley kitchen?

A galley kitchen is shaped like a long hallway, with upper and lower cabinets on either side of the hallway. There are parallel counters on both sides, dotted with appliances. Some galley kitchens have a dining area built into the layout, either at the end of the cabinets or as an extension of the counter space in the form of a small island.

Strong Points:

  • Cost and design: Most galley kitchens are smaller in square footage, making them cheaper and easier to design, build, and renovate.
  • Ergonomic: The shape of the galley kitchen makes it easy to prepare meals without straining your body, as all countertops and appliances are in close proximity to each other.
  • Accessibility: In a galley kitchen, everything is more accessible than in a larger space.
  • maintenance: A galley kitchen is easier and faster to clean than a large kitchen.


  • narrow: The galley kitchen has a narrow layout. This makes it difficult for multiple people to be in the kitchen at the same time.
  • Lack of focus: This type of kitchen layout can sometimes seem to lack a clear focus, with cabinets and appliances blending seamlessly together.
  • resale: The resale value of homes with galley kitchens tends to be lower than larger kitchen layouts.
  • Capacity shortage: Some small galley kitchens don’t have enough storage or counter space.
  • Small home appliances: Standard-sized appliances are ideal for use in galley kitchens because there is less space for large custom appliances.
Advantages and disadvantages of galley kitchens
smart style interior

Galley kitchen ideas and inspiration

We’ve put together some great galley kitchen designs for you to consider. Galley kitchens are suitable for a variety of home styles and sizes.

room with a nice view

the sun is coming
jackson and leroy

This galley kitchen from Jackson & Leroy features painted kitchen cabinets and a window along one wall and wall cabinets along the other side. Even though the space is small, the natural light makes the room seem more open. Additionally, tall wall cabinets combined with open shelves break up the hallway feel of the room.

Maximize with bright colors

Cream backsplash and white cabinets in galley kitchen.

Light-colored kitchens look larger than dark-colored kitchens. Even without windows to brighten the space, this white kitchen looks open and comfortable. Notice also the backsplash in darker neutral tones. This creates the texture and depth you need in a galley-style kitchen. Dark wood floors balance and balance the design, making the overall design feel inviting.

Galley kitchen with peninsula

Ideas to add a pop of color to your galley kitchen.

This galley kitchen uses bright colors to distract from the small area. Light blue subway tile provides a pleasant contrast to the gray cabinetry and stainless steel refrigerator and oven. A breakfast bar on the peninsula helps make the most of this kitchen layout. Due to limited space, a peninsula kitchen is a better option than a galley kitchen island.

patterned backsplash

Add a pattern to the galley kitchen wall.

This galley kitchen features a patterned backsplash and white cabinetry. A patterned tile backsplash creates a focal point that is interesting but doesn’t overwhelm the design. Dark base cabinets add a warm texture to your kitchen design, anchoring it and adding visual interest.

simple floor design

Paint the galley kitchen floor.

The sophisticated galley kitchen design features a blue floor that is both unexpected and interesting. The blue floor complements the bright colors of the kitchen space, while the white walls and natural wood cabinets keep the kitchen design bright.

traditional galley kitchen

traditional galley kitchen
Heidi Caillier design

This galley kitchen design by Heidi Caillier is suitable for a transitional or farmhouse galley kitchen style. The interior design uses soft gray-green and ivory colors for the cabinets, and creates a contrast by finishing with a warm wood countertop. The lighting in the galley kitchen is spare. Rather than using large overhead lights, Caillier added task lighting where needed.

open shelves

Open shelves in a narrow kitchen.

Although this galley kitchen is not very spacious, the design uses all available space to make the most of the narrow layout. Open shelving in the narrow hallway and checkered flooring give the small galley kitchen an oversized feel.

floor to ceiling storage

cabinet wall
lori caldwell design

This galley kitchen from Lori Caldwell Designs features two rows of beautiful wood cabinets. Both sides of the cabinet reach to the ceiling. There is a sink on one side, but one wall is primarily made up of floor-to-ceiling cabinetry. This design decision gives this small kitchen plenty of storage. Notice the floor-to-ceiling windows at the end of the room. A large window overlooking the garden or garden will make the galley kitchen feel even more open.

Wallpaper that expands visual interest

Teal wallpaper at one end of the kitchen.

This kitchen galley design features walls accented with geometric wallpaper. The rest of the kitchen space is simple and clean, but a colorful patterned wall defines the entire area.

high storage

high storage

If you can’t add storage to your small kitchen due to width, consider adding vertical storage. This owner placed open shelving above the refrigerator. The shelves are wide and reach all the way to the ceiling. This takes the focus away from the small space and adds additional storage at the same time.

colorful rug

Add a pop of color to your galley kitchen by adding a rug.
brio interior design

Consider a galley kitchen with colorful Turkish runners. Rugs do more than just add color to a neutral kitchen. The warm texture also enhances the overall style of the room.

arched opening

Add a personal touch to your galley kitchen.

This modern galley kitchen features an arched opening to increase visual space in a closed room. Stainless steel cabinets, open shelves, and colors keep the design bright and bright.

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