Breakfast Nooks: Design Tips and Inspiration

There’s something so inviting about breakfast nooks. You can turn that open space near the kitchen into a cozy spot to enjoy your morning coffee or afternoon tea with a friend. Creating a special place for casual meals is a great way to bring the family together at mealtime.ย With their close proximity to the kitchen, it makes dining there easy. Whether you have room for a banquette that seats a dozen or just a comfortable spot for two, you can create a charming nook. Here are six tips and some beautiful photos for your inspiration.

Breakfast Nooks

1 Match your table to the shape of your space. Rectangular tables look best in long, narrow spaces. Round or square tables work well in square spaces.

Breakfast Nooks: White tufted, upholstered benches create banquette style seating

Better Homes and Gardens

Breakfast Nooks: Contemporary meets retro, green upholstery, metallic chairs

Caitlin Moran Interiors

2 For square-ish areas that are small, round tables are the best option. It’s easier for traffic to flow around them. To avoid the obstacle of table legs, choose a table with a pedestal base.

Breakfast Nooks: Contemporary banquette in blue and green


Breakfast Nooks: Modern table and chair set,pendant lighting and accessories

Better Homes and Gardens

3 Expandable tables off the flexibility of adding more seating for guests. ย They also make a great buffet area for parties.

Breakfast Nooks: Curved banquette with storage below, wall of windows


Breakfast Nooks: Bay window with curved banquette, cottage style, white table and chairs

Better Homes and Gardens

4 No matter what style or size table you choose, allow at least 36 inches all the way around so that there’s room for the chairs to easily be pulled out. And allow at least 20 to 24 inches wide and 15 inches deep for each place setting.

Breakfast Nooks: Modern style with clean lines


Breakfast Nooks: Retro style, black and white checkerboard tile floor

Old House Online

5 If you opt for upholstered chairs or cushions, keep in mind the care they require. Removable slip covers or cushion covers can easily be tossed into the washing machine.

Breakfast Nooks: Cafe style seating for two in red and yellow

Better Homes and Gardens

Breakfast Nooks: Seating for two cafe style

Better Homes and Gardens

6 You can get the look of a banquette without having one built-in by using a settee or benches. If you do have a banquette custom made to fit the space, have them include access to the space below so you can use it for additional storage. Here are some more ideas for banquettes.

Breakfast Nooks: Round table, surrounded by floor-to-ceiling windows

Better Homes and Gardens

Breakfast Nooks: Round table with blue chairs, white wood floor


Breakfast nooks are a great way to turn a small space in or near the kitchen into a functional and stylish eating area. With so many options to choose from, the design possibilities are endless. How do you utilize the breakfast nook in your kitchen?

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  1. 1


    I’ve always loved the idea of a banquette. They’re so inviting, especially when in front of a large window. Speaking of windows, the ones in number 6 are to die for!

    • 2

      Peggy Pardo says

      Hi Doreen! Those windows are amazing, aren’t they? I love lots of windows overlooking a fabulous view! ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. 3


    Great idea in #5 for me. My Pantry door is dead center and a curio would look great on each side. Now to find how to get curios similar to those!

    Huggs, Nancy

    • 6

      Peggy Pardo says

      The corner seating in that banquette was custom made for the space, Chris. You could get the same look by using white tufted benches or loveseats. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • 8


      Happy to help. The most important thing is to measure your space so you know what size table will fit. Allow enough space for guests to get up from the table without knocking into it – you should have 36 inches between the table edge and wall or nearest obstruction. If you’re doing built-in seating, like a booth, 24 inches is sufficient. In areas where others need to walk behind those sitting at the table, like an open entryway, allow 54 to 60 inches for proper traffic flow. ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. 9

    Molly says

    Hi Peggy,
    I have a built-in banquette in my kitchen and am wanting to purchase a table. My banquette is L-shaped and not open on either side (the banquette is set between counters in the corner of the kitchen). How much room do I need to leave on either side for people to slide in and out? The length of each side of the banquette is 93 inches. Would a 50″ square table be too large (would leave about 14 inches between counter and beginning of table).

    • 10


      That’s a pretty tight squeeze, Molly. I’d recommend going with a round table as they are easier to work with and one that is slightly smaller in diameter. ๐Ÿ™‚