Do You Need a Dining Table If You Have an Kitchen Island?

Dining tables and kitchen islands are designed for two different (and sometimes intertwining) roles.

The former creates a gathering point for the family during the dinner.

The latter features cabinets that can be used for storage, but can be used as a gathering point as well.

Do You Need A Dining Table If You Have An Island?

Yes, and No – it’s going to depend. Do you need an extra workplace? If yes, then you absolutely need both.

So, depending on such things as your lifestyle, kitchen floorplan, and how you plan to use the kitchen, you can have both the kitchen island and dining table or opt for one. For instance, open floorplans demand the presence of both because you will want to define an entertainment area and food preparation area. Traditional floorplans, on another hand, function better with just one of these essential pieces of furniture.

Four Reasons To Possess A Kitchen Island And Dining Table

You should have an island + dining table combination in these situations:

1. Large Open Floorplan

We started by mentioning open floorplans, but just to expound on them: make sure the area is large enough.

A truly open concept kitchen should be at least 35 square meters.

This size can comfortably fit an average island and dining table and leave sufficient clearance for walking and moving things.

2. They Are Similar And You Want Them Attached

If you want these two so bad, then you might as well go for a matching pair and attach it somewhere in your kitchen.

By similar, we mean close or matching height, the material of construction, or even size. Still, choose a pair perfect for the size of your kitchen.

3. You Have An Eat-in Kitchen

The main purpose of the kitchen is to provide an area for the preparation/cooking of meals and storage of cookware.

That’s why most homes feature a separate dining space.

However, homes can be small at times, creating a need for multi-purpose or an eat-in kitchen.

An eat-in kitchen lets the family eat their meal right where it’s prepared, so it should have plenty and even a range for seating options (for both adults and kids and even disabled members).

Eat-in kitchens are normally built to size, only allowing the items you want them to accommodate.

In such a kitchen, you’d want to have an island (for preparation of food and storage of items) and a dining table (for eating).

4. You Want Extra Storage Space so Bad, And An Eating Space Too

Every kitchen worth its salt has overhead cabinets for the storage of food supplies and kitchenware.

However, storage space is sometimes insufficient for homeowners with lots of stuff to keep. Fortunately, islands normally come with large underbelly storage spaces to swallow your extra items.

Six Reasons Why A Dining Table Alone Is Preferable

Here’s when a combo would be a bad idea, forcing you to opt for a dining table instead.

1. You Want Maximum Flexibility

The problem with kitchen islands is that they are hard to move around whenever a need arises.

Dining tables, on another hand, are more flexible, meaning you can easily move them around the kitchen with less trouble.

As such, they are a perfect option if you are trying to eliminate the rigidity factor.

2. The Kitchen Is Small And You Want To Create An Illusion Of An Open, Larger Floor As Well

You don’t want to cram your tiny kitchen with a dining table and island. A dining table is the most preferable option if your kitchen is small.

It has very little to do with the fact that you will be dealing with one item but more to do with the large amount of open space left beneath the table.

This open space makes your kitchen look big from all four corners on the floor.

3. Practicality Is On Top Of Your Priorities

If you wouldn’t compromise on the practicality of your kitchen furniture then you should opt for a dining table, more so one with an extension leaf.

Many dining tables come with an option for an extension leaf. An extension leaf lets you entertain a bunch of people and still save on space.

4. Upgradability Is A Priority As Well

It is easier to swap dining tables than islands. It’s a whole lot cheaper to do the same.

If you consider the fact that your taste will change soon, it would make sense for you to opt for a dining table to an island or a combination.

5. Ever-changing Taste In Dining Chairs

Your taste in dining chairs will change too with time.

There are limited types of dining chairs that can work with any given kitchen island.

That’s partly because the bottom of this furniture is always occupied with cabinets which make it harder to simply push in the chairs to free more space.

Conversely, dining tables are somewhat flexible when it comes to adapting to new varieties of chairs.

6. A More Traditional Look

The dining tables are old as an indoor kitchen.

Kitchen islands, on another hand, are more modern.

Unless you get your combination right (which can be difficult), you risk creating a mess out of your kitchen trying to have both in one place.

So, if you are inclined to set up a more traditional kitchen, you’ll certainly choose a dining table over an island or a combination.

Three Reasons Why A Kitchen Island Alone Is Preferable

Here are more reasons why a combination would be a bad idea, forcing you to opt for an island instead.

1. You Prefer Curvy To Circular

We all have phobias. If you dislike corners and would do anything for curved furniture, kitchen islands would be a great choice.

Unless you are thinking circular dining tables, you will realize that curved options in this segment are very limited. However, islands tend to be more diverse when it comes to curves.

A combination of a circular dining table (or even a curved table if you can find one) and a curved island would be unsightly. You get to benefit from the extra storage space nonetheless.

2. You Want A Warm Safe Place For Pets In A Tiny Kitchen

What if you want to make maximum use of a tiny kitchen still leave some space for pets?

An average island can comfortably support 3 – 4 users.

The underbelly can accommodate a pet and extra space for a stockpot or any large cookware.

You can choose to let your pets occupy the entire space if need be.

3. You’re Mad About Personalization

Maybe you like to make handmade tiles or indoor furnishings. You can use them to accompany pretty everything you install indoors.

If you plan to personalize the kitchen, then you are better off with an island than a combination or dining table. Islands are easier to personalize because of the side panels.

Colorful wallpapers and tiles on side pales can tremendously improve the appearance of your cooking space.


To summarize everything, whether you should accompany your kitchen island with a dining table will depend on the situation at hand.

While a combo can be expensive, it helps speed up food preparation and provides extra storage space.