The pleasures of home baking are being rediscovered in many American families. Homemade bread, cakes, pastries, and cookies are among life’s simple pleasures.
Children, especially, love the aromas of home-baking and the opportunities for hands-on involvement. They provide happy memories of family life that will stay with them into adulthood.
The occasional home baker might do well enough in any kitchen, but the more committed and ambitious will want a kitchen custom-made around their needs. The baker’s requirements are very specific, including lots of surface space and specialist storage for the tools of the trade.
If you or someone in your family is an enthusiastic home-baker, make sure this is properly reflected in any kitchen remodeling project. The following design tips will help you think through the possibilities.
Add a Kitchen Island
Bakers need space – and lots of it! One way to create extra working surface is to add a kitchen island. Of course, many larger kitchen designs have these as standard, but for the home baker they are the perfect workstation. They provide an uncluttered surface, good lighting, elbow room, and extra storage possibilities.
Islands also allow family members and friends to enjoy the baking process while being comfortably seated at the other side of the island; after all, baking should be a fun social activity.
If your kitchen lacks the space for an island, consider adding a peninsula to your wall-based units (a kitchen peninsula is three-sided and attached to a wall at one end). Again, this gives the baker the open surface area for their needs.
Varied Countertop Heights and the Best Materials
An important consideration for any worktop is its height. Kitchen surfaces are typically designed for general purpose use, but the baker often needs a lower-level surface for the important tasks of hand-mixing and kneading.
Part of your island could be at the level of the typical dining table to avoid excessive strain on back and arms. Wheelchair bakers can have a working level custom-built for their needs.
Children will also love a low-level surface to try out their mixing and decorating skills.
Work surfaces should be heat-resistant for hot baking trays to be safely set down. Granite and marble are popular choices, but quartz is the ideal. It can take direct heat and the wear and tear of rolling and cutting. All stone surfaces are cool, making them perfect for pastry work.
The ideal baker’s kitchen will have some open shelving to allow easy identification and access to the myriad utensils and ingredients required. These shelves need to vary in depth and height to allow for bowls, mixers, trays, cookbooks, and jars.
Decorative cookware, perhaps cherished heirlooms, can also be showcased together with your favorite cookbooks and any fun baking-related figurines or artwork.
Open shelving can be positioned below or above your countertops and be included within a kitchen island or peninsula.
Custom Storage for Baking Supplies
As a regular baker, you’ll know that trying to find particular baking equipment in a rush can be frustrating. You want to see things clearly and access them quickly. This is why custom storage for your baking supplies is an essential feature for your new kitchen.
Baking trays and cooling racks can conveniently be stored edge-on in vertically divided shelving or deep draws.
Rollouts are also fantastic storage options for all your baking accessories, including utensils, spices, and small appliances. A pull-out drawer with dividers keeps items organized and easy to find.
Cupboards can also be adapted in various clever ways to store kitchen equipment and ingredients, including bins with air-tight lids in which to keep all kinds of foodstuffs.
Every baker needs good lighting to create those delicious breads, cakes, and cookies. An abundance of natural light is always necessary for the home interior, and this applies even more so where food is prepared.
Where possible, make good use of windows, potentially expanding their size if appropriate. Artificial lighting should be soft-focused but plentiful.
Overhead lighting needs to support the general baking area, whether a kitchen island or otherwise, while undercabinet lighting can provide more localized illumination. It’s also possible to place LED lighting strips within cabinets so you can easily see baking equipment and ingredients.
If space and finances allow, a double wall-mounted oven is perfect for the home-baker. Twin ovens provide for simultaneous baking at different temperatures, while giving an eye-level view of the baking process. They also allow one oven to be used for baking while a family meal is cooking in the other.
Modern home kitchens are integrating advanced technology like never before. While cookbooks are still popular, many people now discover and share baking recipes online. With internet recipe-hunting the norm, dedicated spaces for a WiFi-enabled tablet or laptop are becoming essential design features.
A phone and tablet mount stand and charging stations allow you to stay connected during the baking process. The installation of smart speakers enables you to interact vocally without needing to touch buttons with flour-covered fingers.
In between baking tasks, you can sit and read articles, listen to podcasts, or catch up with social media updates.
These days, smart high-tech is everywhere and in nearly every appliance. Apps and voice assistants can control everything from your kitchen lighting and heating to your refrigerator, oven, microwave, blender, and coffee maker. Smart refrigerators even let you stream music and remotely check your fridge for ingredients. You can even watch TV via a screen on the fridge door.
There are also smart toasters, frying pans, and kitchen scales. The list keeps on growing and will for the foreseeable future.
Designing the Perfect Kitchen for the At-Home Baker
As you can see, designing a kitchen for the at-home baker requires careful planning and consideration. To support your enjoyment of baking and to ensure your talents flourish, it’s important to get the right elements in place.
The design-build remodeling team here at Blackline Renovations in Dallas specializes in creating kitchens perfect for passionate home baking enthusiasts.
We offer friendly and expert advice either virtually or with an in-home consultation. We aim to incorporate your specific ideas and needs into a stylish and functional kitchen that will delight any home baker.