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Small Kitchen Carts & Islands to Spruce Up Your Space

Feeling cramped in your kitchen? You’ll probably instinctively rebel at the idea of losing more space. However, when you push past your initial hesitations, you’ll get more than you give by adding a small kitchen island or cart. Whether you’re desperate for extra counter space, envisioning more dinner seating or dreaming of storage options, you can find something that works for you.

Improving the functionality of your kitchen doesn’t have to be an expensive, time-consuming hassle. Islands and carts can meet many of your needs efficiently and affordably. In fact, you’ll soon wonder how you ever lived without it!

Still not convinced? We’ve answered some of the most common questions to help you make the decision to update your small kitchen design:

What differentiates small kitchen carts and small kitchen islands?

When you look at small kitchen carts and small kitchen islands, it can be hard to tell the difference. In fact, you may (understandably) be wondering if the terms are just interchangeable. The truth is there are some differences between the options. However, manufacturers often blur the line between the terms depending on their target audience. Small kitchen carts are often the smaller of the options, and they are always moveable. Small kitchen islands may be moveable, but that is not required to be. Additionally, small kitchen carts are generally less stable, and they are difficult to wire with electricity. On the other hand, small kitchen islands can be wired, but they also consume more floor space and are difficult to move.

What should I look for when shopping for small kitchen carts and small kitchen islands?

The first step is determining your priorities. For example, if your primary motivation is finding more counter space, you may find a small kitchen island meets your needs. We suggest prioritizing between the following:

  • Storage options
  • Seating options
  • Counter space
  • Floor space consumption
  • Flexibility

After you’ve evaluated our list above and chosen between an island or a cart, it’s time to consider your budget, lifestyle, and the available space in your kitchen. When you’re preparing to make a purchase, these considerations will all factor into your decision. Try not to make design changes that compromise the work triangle.

How will an island or cart addition impact my interior design?

Many people wrongfully assume that adding a new fixture to an already limited space will make it appear more disorganized and crowded than ever before. In fact, the addition of an island or cart can tie together the overall look and feel of your kitchen space. It’s also a way to modernize the aesthetic of an older kitchen without the permanent commitment of most kitchen remodeling.

Our Favorite Small Kitchen Carts

Decided to move forward with your purchase? We thought so! To save you a bit of time, we’ve compiled a list of a few options for different lifestyles.

Before you review our choices, it’s important to note that we do not make any commissions or earn referral credit when you purchase a product on this list. We value integrity and honesty, which is why companies cannot pay to feature products in our guides. As a result, you’ll only see suggestions we believe in!

We absolutely love the look of this Zona Kitchen Cart by Mercury Row (currently $230 from $390)! Although the cart is specifically outfitted to function as an industrial-inspired bar cart, it can also pull double duty for more general kitchen storage. Outfitted with wheels, stylish top handles, and a removable tray – this cart is as versatile as it is sophisticated. It’s also unusually sturdy for a kitchen cart.

If you’re looking for a bold statement piece with modern aesthetic appeal, then you can’t go wrong with this Hauge Kitchen Cart by Wrought Studio (currently $81 from $165)! The granite top is both durable and full of contemporary style. Additionally, the cart is outfitted with a wine rack, a cutting board, and a utensil drawer! The wheels pictured above are detachable, should you prefer a stationary addition to the kitchen.  While it doesn’t offer much more counter space, it’s compact enough for almost any space, and can be relocated as needed.

Does the phrase “small kitchen carts” leave you picturing cozy cabins and charming cottages? If so, you’ll love this Ferraro Kitchen Cart by Alcott Hill (currently $215 from $289). This particular product comes in red, black, or white, which allows it to mesh well with various kitchen design choices. The cart has an undeniable air of vintage charm and offers a spice rack, a towel rack, and spacious cabinet storage for pots and pans. Although the wheels do not detach, they will lock in place if you’d like to use the cart as a stationary kitchen fixture.

Our Favorite Small Kitchen Islands

Moving forward with a small kitchen island? You can’t go wrong with the options below:

Think you’re ready for a commitment? This extendable island is ready to say “I do!” to a new home in your kitchen. It is crafted from solid oak and weighs in at over 220lbs when assembled. Although the island is difficult to relocate, it offers unrivaled stability and ample storage options. Thanks to the foldable drop leaf that flips up for added space, the Seddon Kitchen Island by Darby Home Co functions as both prep space and a breakfast bar (currently $660 from $697).

If you’re searching for the storage and counter space of a kitchen island and the mobility of a kitchen cart, you’ll find the perfect blend of features in this Kinch Kitchen Island by Red Barrel Studio ($428). The island has a built-in towel rack, wheels with locking casters, a spice rack, and attached drop leaf. The delightful and unique design seamlessly merges together a practical stainless steel countertop and durable solid oak storage.

The Collette Kitchen Island by August Grove features enough storage options to satisfy your every need ($437). Finished in ebony and artfully distressed, the design and hardware of the island evoke a sense of antique elegance. Although this is the only island on our list without a drop leaf, this limitation feels inconsequential when the island is in use. Due to its easy to clean material and a lack of wheels, this island is a great choice for those with kids.

We hope you’ve enjoyed this article! Remember, Bright Builders doesn’t make any money on referrals from these links. The products above are the result of a completely unbiased selection process, so you can be confident in the quality of our recommendations. If we’ve helped you find your perfect small kitchen island or small kitchen cart, let us know in the comments!