How deep for kitchen drawers?

sandlllJuly 6, 2010

Thanks to GW's help I am planning all lower drawers except for under the sink and a one cabinet in the island for taller items. I'd like to know what Drawer sizes ( depth and width) are best.

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LOL! I seem to be finding all your threads. This one is sinking, so I'll tell you what I did. My whole kitchen is 100% custom to my design, made by a local cabinetmaker, so you might have different results with standardized sizes if you're buying commercial.

For widths, I got as wide as possible. I have a U so I have 2 sets of corner drawers. Those are 36" units. I suppose it's possible to make them different sizes, but that's standard and works well. From the corner to the oven structure are 31.5" wide drawers. On the other side are 48" pot drawers under my 48" hood. Then the DW and the sink cabinet (ROTS in the bottom under the sink not only makes it more convenient to reach the back, when a plumbing adjustment has to be made the whole thing can be taken out without emptying it. Between the sink cabinet and the other corner is the trash with a drawer above. Between the corner and the Advantium/fridge/freezer structure is a little 11.5" wide (exterior measure) pullout (for bread, cereal, etc.) in the extra space.

I want fridge drawers in the middle of my small island. There's a sink cabinet on the side that determines the width of the right hand drawers (19.5" exterior). The left hand drawers (14" exterior) are what's left. Behind the drawers on the other side is a big pullout caddy for boards.

Under the ovens and Advantium are two large drawers, the full 30" wide. One is 11.5" deep (interior height) and the other is almost 15" deep (interior), each with a 4" ROTS inside (3" interior). Plus the 6" deep x 30" wide drawer I have under the Advantium for the trays, potholders, etc.

I also have five small, shallow drawers in my butler's pantry area for serving pieces and extra flatware, again the width that fit. There's a full height spice rack by the ovens and a pitcher cupboard the same height.

As I said, biggest possible. No extra divisions. I measured all my stuff and decided that I could fit whatever I wanted, where I wanted if I had the same depths all the way around the perimeter. My tall canisters and stock pot are 11" tall, so my bottom drawers are 11" inside (13" outside, full overlay). For utensils and stuff I thought 4" inside (6" outside) was adequate (I have hanging (pegboard) storage for weird stuff like the egg beater). That left 9" inside (11" outside) which fits my medium canisters, bread bowl, and allows me to stack a few pots. My small appliances all fit in the deep drawers under the ovens. The pizza stone, which is amazingly heavy, goes in the pullout under its oven.

I have baking pans and bowls in the 31.5" drawers. Canisters and utensils in the baking corner; flatware, plastic containers and tea towels in the sink corner. The top drawer under the cooktop is vestigial (most of the depth is stove), but it holds grill pans, spatter screens, wooden spoons and stirrers, meatforks, etc. Knives, wraps and bags, gadgets and tools in the narrow island drawers, of which there are four, and colanders and graters in one of the wide, deeper drawers, mixing/prep bowls in the other.

That's a very longwinded way of saying, measure everything and make sure it'll fit where you want it to fit, and make sure you have a place to put away everything you need to put away. You can always put organizers or dividers in wider drawers, but you can never get back the space you waste by putting narrower drawers in. Cutting three feet in half loses you not only the inch and a half of the actual cabinetry, plus the width of the rails, but also the area where handles can cross, little things can be fit among bigger things, etc.

Brevity is not my strong suit. I hope this is helpful.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2010 at 12:55AM
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Little kitchen here and I am so thankful for this site for guiding me to having mostly drawers below! My cooktop is ultra thin allowing me to have a have a 34” wide, 4” deep drawer below it. It was originally two drawers but it drove me crazy to open one then the other to find what I needed. So I had the cabinet maker replace them with a single w-i-d-e drawer so I can see everything at one glance. It’s great for cooking utensils and measuring spoons, rolling pin, etc.

Below that are two 8” deep drawers. The top holds most of my pots and pans and the bottom is Tupperland. My largest roasting pan and spaghetti pot have their own cabinet space. They are used infrequently so I don’t mind having to reach for them. The stack of four drawers next to my sink: #1 has custom knife storage, #2 wraps and bags, #3 BBQ stuff, #4 towels. I have one more 34” drawer that holds all my flatware, bar items and serves as a tidy junk drawer. An extra wide drawer means you can organize and re-organize as required. As plllog says above, once you opt for a narrow drawer your flexibility is forever limited.

Don’t think I could keep dishes in the drawers. My DD has this arrangement and I find setting the table or unloading the dishwasher to be a pain (literally) since one needs to bend over to manage a stack of plates. I like plates and mixing bowls at eye level, but that’s why daughters have their own kitchens.

Here is a link that might be useful: Drawers below cooktop (the top is now a single drawer)

    Bookmark   July 7, 2010 at 5:39AM
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Thanks again plllog! You've come to my rescue quite a bit lately! Thank you cross stitch too! The problem I have is that I had to pack up all my kitchen things 2 months before the kitchen was demo'd so I am not sure how tall my things are... I can estimate though, and that's the other reason I am leaving a bottom cabinet in the design. I love the idea of rollouts under the kitchen sink! I am going to go thru my layout with a fine tooth comb this weekend. Good to know that the wider the drawers the better.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2010 at 9:11AM
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Oh! Forgot to mention on the wider drawers, do make sure that there are sturdy bottoms. Because I was putting a not-quite-literal ton of Le Creuset in my pot drawers, my cabinetmaker also spec'd 250 lb. rated drawer rails. These don't have soft closers, but with all that weight in the drawers they're not really necessary. There's enough mass for momentum to close them, and the Blum don't slam even without the soft close.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2010 at 5:54PM
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plllog, have you posted a photo of your kitchen somewhere on this board? I've tried to draw your floor plan with it's drawer locations from your description but would love to see an actual photo.

I'm trying to figure out if I have the right combo of drawers and rots, etc and it looks like you gave this a lot of thought.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2010 at 4:28PM
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Oh! Sorry. I've been slowly getting the details done and working on other projects, so it's not posted. I don't have any photos of the whole thing because there's junk in the middle. My floorplan is online, however. (Scroll down.)

If you have any questions, I'd be happy to provide more info.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2010 at 4:39PM
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