How to Choose the Right Portable Kitchen Island

Portable Kitchen Island

A portable kitchen island, also known as a rolling kitchen island, can make a great addition to any kitchen. Not only do they look great, but they also offer some practical benefits. It is a way of adding extra storage and creating more work surface space in your kitchen. The fact that they are on wheels gives you the option to move the position of the kitchen island whenever you want, which some people find advantageous over a fixed permanent island. If you decide that you would like to add a portable kitchen island to your kitchen, then the following are some of the factors for you to consider when making your decision.

Types of Portable Kitchen Islands

There are many different types of portable kitchen islands available, so you need to think about which type best meets your needs, says Freshome. Some of the options are:

  • Bar-style kitchen island- These are a slightly taller style of kitchen island to which you can add stools so that you can also use the island to enjoy drinks and snacks.
  • Dining kitchen island- In a small house or apartment with no separate dining area, a portable kitchen island can offer a dining solution. These need space below the work surface so that there is somewhere to put your knees. Many have extendable or drop-leaf sections so that you have more space to eat.
  • Butcher’s block kitchen island- If you intend to use the kitchen island predominantly for food preparation, then a butcher’s block island is a good option. These have a deeper top made from solid treated wood.
  • Storable kitchen island- Ideal for small kitchens, a storable kitchen island rolls away and stores under the work surface when it is not in use. This means you can still take advantage of the storage in the island, but leave more space available in your kitchen.


One of the main considerations when choosing a portable kitchen island is its size. There are several things to think about when deciding which is the best size for your kitchen. These include:

  • Size of the kitchen- The main consideration is the size of the kitchen. A bulky kitchen island can take up too much room in a small kitchen. On the other hand, a small kitchen island can look lost in a large kitchen. Make sure you measure the space available before choosing your portable kitchen island.
  • Space around the island- It is essential that you have enough room around the island to move freely between the island and your fitted kitchen units or walls.
  • How the island is used- The way in which you intend to use the kitchen island will impact on which size is best for you.


You will find a vast range of styles and colors available. Some examples of styles include traditional, modern, contemporary, country, rustic, and retro. Your choice of style and color is a matter of personal preference, but they should complement the color and style of your fitted units.

Storage Options

One of the main reasons why people add a portable kitchen island to their kitchen is so that they have additional storage in their kitchen. Your personal storage needs will dictate the amount and type of storage that you need. Many kitchen islands come with various combinations of cupboards, drawers, and shelving. So, you need to think about which combination will best meet your needs and how you will use the island.


The materials from which your portable kitchen island is made impacts on its aesthetics, the price, the weight, and the durability of the kitchen island. Most kitchen islands are made from wood, which is either in its natural form, treated, or painted. There are many different types of wood used. A cheaper and lighter but less durable alternative is manufactured wood-based materials. There are also some models that are made from metal or synthetic materials, which are cheap but not very durable.

Additional Features

Cymax says that there are lots of different features available on rolling kitchen islands, so you should decide which of these you are likely to need when making your choice. Some of the additional features you may find on portable kitchen islands include:

  • Shelves- Having shelves offers an alternative method of storage and is good feature if you want to have some things as display features.
  • Wine rack- If you are a wine lover, then a wine rack is an advantage.
  • Extendable work surface- Having a drop-leaf or extendable work surface is a good idea if you have limited space available in your kitchen, but you may need extra work surfaces on some occasion. These are also a good option if you intend to use the island for occasional dining.
  • Multi-level- Some islands have surfaces at different levels. For example, the larger part is at a regular height for use as a work surface with a raised surface to create a bar-style section.
  • Lockable casters- This is a good feature to look for as having lockable casters will prevent the kitchen island from moving if you lean on it or it gets knocked.
  • Hooks- If you intend to use the island as a food preparation area, then having some hooks is a useful way of keeping your utensils to hand.

Portable Kitchen Islands – The Final Verdict

A portable kitchen island can make a great addition to any kitchen as these have many aesthetic and practical benefits. To make sure you get the most suitable portable kitchen island for you, there are many factors that you should consider. In terms of aesthetics, you should choose a color and style that complements your existing kitchen units. There are also practical considerations to make. These include the type of island, its size, the storage options, the materials, and any additional features that you need. By considering each of these factors, it will help you choose a portable kitchen island that looks amazing and meets all your practical needs.

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