You don’t have to live in the sticks to try our 14 country kitchen ideas

Steal the best country kitchen ideas for a wholesome and inviting cooking space.

For anyone dreaming of the good life, a country kitchen is high up on the wish list. In fact, some of the hallmarks of country kitchen ideas, like range cookers and a rustic look, are sometimes borrowed by their city kitchen cousins. Why? Because these kitchen design ideas speak to a slower pace of life where meals aren’t just cooked in a dash, but are laboured over with love to be savoured by family and friends over a good, long conversation. 

But, how do the best country kitchens, big and small, manage to embody this feeling? There are numerous elements that come together to create that rustic look, some more familiar than others.

Artichoke kitchenCredit: Artichoke

Wooden worktops (or, more specifically, a butcher’s block), the aforementioned range cooker (Mary Berry’s favourite, the Aga, being the most coveted), simple Shaker-style kitchen units and open shelving, such as plate racks, are all de rigueur in a country kitchen. But marble-effect quartz composite, all-singing integrated appliances that hide inconspicuously behind country-style doors and bold floral wall murals are modern innovations that can elevate the rustic feel.

Fallen in love with this easy-to live-with kitchen design approach? Then settle in as we share some of the dreamiest country kitchen schemes around.

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1. Incorporate an island with open shelving

Use your workstation to tell your culinary story

deVOL kitchenCredit: deVOL

Not every country kitchen has sprawling proportions, but grand country kitchens are a great place to start for cherry-picking fantasy country kitchen ideas. 

This grand island by deVOL incorporates shelving to stash cookbooks, a hodge podge of wicker baskets and copper pots. Together these elements tell a story of ripe produce collected fresh from vines, cookbooks consulted and some delicious recipe whipped up and savoured by eager kitchen guests. We’re thinking raspberry jam. 

That is the magic of shelves incorporated in your island – instead of a blunt flat panel, storage gives an opportunity to create warmth, tactility and a narrative of abundance. 

The Classic English Kitchen by deVOL starts from £30,000.

2. Create a character wall shelf

Put your country life on display with pride

deVOLCredit: deVOL

Wall shelves in a country kitchen are an opportunity to make a statement about Mother Nature and her bounty. Oil paintings featuring produce or flora and fauna feel like touchpoints of contemplation when shown off in a peaceful country kitchen. 

You can’t rush displays. The best examples of styling kitchen shelves spark curiosity and start a conversation. It takes patience to not only collect the objects but to arrange them in a way that feels considered. Be patient and enjoy the process. 

We like how the designers at deVOL have used a block of colour above the shelf to frame the framed art. Incorporating wall lighting makes sure that, come evening, the display will take on a new life and the cooking experience will be that much easier for the chef. 

Wondering what this lovely shade of blue is above the shelf? It’s Trinity Blue – a propriety colour from deVol that you can purchase on their website. 

Featured product

Trinity Blue Furniture Paint, deVOL

RRP: £25 for 2.5ltrs

3. Add a whimsical wallpaper

Set the scene with wallpapers that speak to bucolic living

deVOLCredit: deVOL

Wallpapers portraying bucolic scenes find their ultimate expression in country kitchens. Whether the paper pays homage to lush foliage, equestrian pursuits or leaping lambs, each is equally charming.  

The secret to selecting the right country-themed wallpaper is making sure that the colour works in harmony with the paint colours you have selected for your kitchen units. You want to extend the feeling of calm that country life typifies and avoid any jarring colour clashes. 

In this country kitchen, the cabinets are painted in a neutral cream colour. The upside of matching neutral kitchen cabinets with wallpaper is that you have to work very hard to get it wrong, as neutrals offer the greatest degree of compatibility in the colour family.  

Get samples of your paint and preferred wallpaper samples up on your walls and see them in different light before taking the plunge. 

4. Hang pots and pans from the ceiling

Keep your favourite utensils at the ready and on display

deVOLCredit: deVOL
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This is a fun country kitchen idea. Why not use the length of your room and generous ceiling height to hang your must-use pots and pans overhead? 

For one thing, you keep those constantly used cooking implements close to hand instead of cluttering up the back of cupboards. 

Not only that, but the idea that pans are primed to be grabbed at any moment to create a gorgeous meal gives this kitchen such a welcoming feel.  

Have the right kitchen dimensions to try this without risking banged heads? All you’ll need is a rod, some hooks and some display-worthy pots. This is not a place for bashed-up pans shedding their non-stock coating.

Sprinkling in at least a few copper ones definitely adds to the country kitchen effect. 

5. Add a modern central light

Create contrast with subtle central lighting

Pooky chandelierCredit: Pooky

Thinking of adding crystal chandelier to your country kitchen? This can look lovely, but it might be worth considering how good a modern light looks in a classic space too. 

A clean-lined understated central light speaks to a confidence in the overall ensemble’s impact. Why over-egg the pudding with an over-the-top ceiling light when something less showy will allow your your country kitchen joinery to shine? 

A horizontal pendent light has the additional upside of spreading light across the room – an advantage if yours is a particularly large kitchen with above-average lighting needs. This kitchen shows features the Pentabulous Chandelier, by Pooky. 

We also like the Nula Horizontal Pendant by Heathfield & Co. It ticks the modernity box but also ramps up the grandeur stakes with its alabaster composition. 

Featured product

Pentabulous Chandelier, Pooky

RRP: £330

6. Embrace a dark and moody look

Not all country kitchens need to be light and bright

Garden TradingCredit: Garden Trading

Is your country kitchen naturally dark and moody? We say play to its strengths and make it more so. 

Picking up a paint brush and lavishing your cabinets in charcoal, dark chocolate or deepest berry might sometimes feel like something akin to recklessness. That is because you are pushing against the popular viewpoint that an ideal room is a light and bright one. 

But some rooms are just made for a darker treatment. And once that colour is up, what you end up with is a space brimming with secret country mysteries. 

A good way to temper the effect is to add lashings of light crockery and a light stone worktop to counterbalance the dark paintwork. 

Companies like Garden Trading and Graham and Green are great places to pick up the accents that will accentuate your dark and moody country kitchen. 

7. Add a range cooker

Cook in the classic country kitchen style

Cley Kitchen by Naked Kitchen featuring a range cookerCredit: Naked Kitchens

What is your country kitchen if not the social epicentre of your country home? That is why a range cooker is synonymous with these types of kitchens. This type of cooker is bigger than standard stoves and has the functionality to handle whatever your large gatherings throw at them. And if you choose an Aga, some models can even heat the space for you for a cosy welcome.

Range cookers come in a variety of styles and even a variety of fuel options. Prefer traditional wood burning to electric powered cooking? There is a perfect range cooker for you. Have a small country kitchen? Slimmed down options are available for tight spaces and if you want to make a statement with your cooker, you’ll find a selection of colour options. 

Range cookers look the part, not only in country kitchens but also in modern kitchens anywhere that want a touch of classic country style is celebrated. 

8. Try unique kitchen shelves

Maximise your hanging capacity with pegs

A kitchen by The Grit and Polish featuring pegged storageCredit: The Grit and Polish

A staple of Shaker design – a favourite look for country kitchens – pegged hanging is usually associated with hallways. But the country styling experts at Grit & Polish have come up with a creative way to use it above worktops.   

They have created triple shelf stacking, with the bottom shelf lined with pegs to provide additional hanging for everyday items like strainers and chopping boards.  

This look hails from across the pond in North America so, this would be an especially unexpected country kitchen idea that is both practical and noteworthy. 

For a similar shelf, check out the Hambledon Peg Rail Shelf from Garden Trading. 

Featured product

Hambledon Peg Rail Shelf, Garden Trading

RRP: £45

Hambledon Peg Rail Shelf, Garden Trading

9. Pile on the plate racks

Make storing crockery a feature

Country style plate storage by EnsemblierCredit: Ensemblier / Natalie Dinham

We took one look at this comfy and stylish country kitchen by Ensemblier and realised that plate racks are definitely deserving of a spot on any list of country kitchen ideas. 

For one thing, who made the rule that plates need to be stashed away behind closed doors? We use them all day every day and our being able to put get them and put them away with almost zero effort just seems like a sensible move. 

Secondly, for the hyper-organised, how soothing is it seeing plates perfectly lined up and ready for action? Even the messiest person can’t get this look wrong as the plate slots corral our crockery into order. 

Built-in slots look lovely and harmonious when painted, like this example, in the same finish as the rest of the joinery.  

Is a plate rack not available in your preferred kitchen style? You can buy wall-hung plate racks from suppliers like Pelican Wood Work on Etsy, who offer multiple finishes to suit your kitchen design. 

10. Hide modern appliances behind decorative doors

Clever joinery takes refrigeration to elegant new heights

A decadent kitchen with hidden refridgeration by luxury kitchen designers, ArtichokeCredit: Artichoke

To say that we are enamoured with Artichoke’s take on refrigeration styling is a massive understatement. 

Imagine having a doors in your country kitchen that to all the world look like they are leading to a sitting room, or a library. But instead guests open them to discover that they haven’t just found the avocado stash but also, possibly the prettiest solution ever for keeping food fresh. 

Anthony Earle, Artichoke’s lead designer shares, ‘To enhance the impression that this kitchen was built in the Victorian period, we integrated as much furniture into the interior architecture as possible; such as, offsetting walls to form chimney recesses for the cooking range, with built-in furniture which mimicked joinery made by an estate joiner that works as fridge housing.’ 

We like the symmetry of this design that balances a pair of doors on either side of the cooker, but, we don’t think it is absolutely vital that you have a pair of doors if your space is smaller. A single door hiding the fridge would also be a great design flourish that is sure to amuse you and your guests with every use.

11. Include a rug

Take inspiration from your sitting room to add cosiness

A charming rug in a Neptune kitchenCredit: Neptune

What is the one characteristic that most country kitchens share? No matter if they are large, small or anything in between, they feel inviting. 

To add an extra layer of welcoming charm, we suggest you take inspiration from this Neptune design consider adding a rug. Borrowing the rug décor element from the living room is another great way to signal to your guests that your country kitchen is just the place for them to linger and chat.   

To amp up the rustic country kitchen charm why not poke around in your local antique shop and see if you can get your hands on a used rug that has worn to perfection. Otherwise, companies like Benuta and Ruggable are good places to shop faux-vintage rugs. 

You can also find machine washable options that make your rug care as easy as maintaining your dishtowels. Just pop them in your washing machine and they are as good as new. 

If opting for a kitchen rug, just be sure to use with the right non-slip underlay. 

12. Enjoy a modern take on stained oak

Enjoy modern wood grain lavished in delicious colours

A modern oak kitchen by LochAnna KitchensCredit: LochAnna

Even in the rustic country kitchen, oak fell out of favour for a white, being associated with old-fashioned and stodgy brown cabinetry.  

However, lighter oak can be a modern and breezy option for a country kitchen. The vogue for texture over flat surfaces means that oak veneered planks have never looked more stylish.  

Soothing wood grain takes centre stage creating a natural spa-like feel, which is something that we sacrifice with the more popular painted country kitchens. 

But, what if you love wood grain and also a touch of colour? 

The win-win décor option is stains. Enjoy charming colours without losing the wonderful aesthetic of wood.  

When oak veneer is stained, the effect can lean towards rustic –making the surface finish absolutely spot on for the country kitchen aesthetic. 

LochAnna Kitchens offers a great example of the look with its Tavole Collection. The planked effect speaks of comfort and familiarity and the colours are bang on trend for balancing charm with contemporary tastes. Get creative by mixing and matching hues to create your own unique style. 

13. Bring the greenery in with a ceiling-mounted herb garden

Always keep your fresh herbs within easy reach

A kitchen Burbidge & Son Kitchen Makers featuring a ceiling mounted herb gardenCredit: Burbidge & Son Kitchen Makers

So, we think this is a genius idea. What if when you want to throw fresh basil into your pasta, all you have to do is reach up. After discovering this country kitchen by Burbidge & Son Kitchen Makers, a ceiling-mounted herb garden feels like the most obvious idea in the world. 

What we like – besides the fact that it’s gorgeous –  is that it ticks quite a few other boxes too. 

Growing your own herbs in your kitchen saves buying herbs wrapped in plastic and you can strike chives, parsley and coriander off your shopping list. 

If you decide not to hang your herb garden above you, a wall-mounted shelf close to your cooker would be just as handsome and handy.

14. Let your dining table take centre stage

Give guests something to chat about

A gorgeous small country kitchen with a central dining table by Sean Symington Interior DesignCredit: Sean Symington Interior Design

Your country kitchen is a work of art that should be enjoyed at every possible occasion. And what better occasions are there to bask in its glory than at all mealtimes? 

We like how Sean Symington Interior Design took this relatively compact country kitchen and turned it into a rather grand event by planting a round dining table for 5 in its centre. The oversized pendent helps to zone the eating area and adds to the visual spectacle. 

Although it may seem that dining tables and chairs in your country kitchen would take up a sizable amount of space, you in fact only need a few square feet of extra space. 

Have a really petite country kitchen that you would like to incorporate seating into? Perhaps a petite table pushed up against the wall with a two-person bench on one side might be a good solution for you. The table might even act as a separate prep zone when you aren’t using it for dining. 

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Written by Joy Archer she/her

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