Breakfast bars have exploded in kitchen design popularity simultaneously with the spectacular growth of kitchen islands.
It makes sense given most breakfast bars are situated along one and sometimes two sides of the island.
However, islands don’t have a monopoly on the breakfast bar. You can find them along kitchen peninsulas as well.
Since the kitchen is often the central room of the home, it’s becoming more and more of a multi-purpose room that includes adjacent seating, in-kitchen dining (including cozy dining nooks) and now casual dining areas with the breakfast bar.
Breakfast bars are fantastic because it creates a community space, much like a tavern does. I guess there’s something about sitting on bar stools that create a casual, fun and community environment.
Fortunately for you, if you’re interested in kitchen designs with a breakfast bar, our photo gallery features hundreds of such designs. Enjoy.
You can click images to make them bigger.
What is a breakfast bar?
A breakfast bar is an area in your kitchen where people can eat, usually on stools. They’re most often along one or two sides of a kitchen island, but also commonly found along peninsulas.
While on the face of it, they seem like a win/win with no disadvantages. However, in my view, there are some disadvantages (many solid pros too).
Pros and Cons
- Provides a casual eating area.
- Offers additional seating in the kitchen which brings people together.
- Looks great, especially if choose some amazing bar stools. Check out the designs above and notice how bar stools can enhance a kitchen’s design.
- Efficient use of space by offering a convenient dining space.
- Very convenient since it’s very proximate to kitchen space for place-settings, clearing and food service.
- Uses up work space in the kitchen.
- May result in forsaking more formal meals at the dining table.
- Can be weird with everyone eating in one long row. Not exactly a terrific dining experience.
- Stools aren’t the most comfortable form of seating.
Breakfast Bar vs. Breakfast Nook
First of all, you can easily have both if you have an island in your kitchen. It’s not one or the other.
Second, both are convenient; and while breakfast nook seating can be a space saving option, it does take up more space than a breakfast bar that’s part of an island or peninsula.
One thing nook dining offers is a more pleasant dining environment for multiple people. It’s odd eating with other people all lined up like ducks in a row.
Another benefit of nook seating is it’s more comfortable than the breakfast bar stools. I’m not a fan of sitting on stools and for that reason alone, I’m partial to nooks or some form of in-kitchen dining.
But, at the end of the day, there’s absolutely no reason you can’t incorporate both in your kitchen and thereby catering to all dining occasions and everyone’s preferences. Besides, it never hurts to have plenty of seating in the kitchen since kitchens tend to attract people.
Must it be a 2-tier island or peninsula?
Some might take a more strict definition of breakfast bars in that the island or peninsula have two-tiers in order to qualify as a breakfast bar.
While I can see this point of view, it’s not how we interpret a breakfast bar. It doesn’t really make practical sense because there really isn’t much difference between a two-tier island/peninsula and one that’s one level but perhaps slightly elevated.