10 Inexpensive Kitchen Island Ideas to Upgrade Your Space for Cheap

Hunker may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story. Learn more about our affiliate and product review process here.

Kitchens come in all shapes and sizes. And while some of us have built-in kitchen islands to utilize, others have to be creative about scoring extra surface space. Luckily, we did a little digging and uncovered a slew of inexpensive ways to maximize your kitchen island—whether you actually have one or not. From multifunctional prep tables to pendant lighting and more, here are 10 affordable kitchen island ideas for under $200.


1. Employ a linear pendant light.

Nothing upgrades a kitchen island faster than an eye-catching pendant light. A sculptural light fixture with clear glass shades brings a dash of drama to a kitchen island while supplying overhead lighting.

Video of the Day

Get the look: Pamella 3-Light Kitchen Island Linear Pendant, $87.99

2. Buy a prep table with storage shelving.

If you don't actually have a kitchen island, don't worry. A freestanding prep table with built-in storage shelving moonlights as a makeshift kitchen island in any size of kitchen.


Get the look: Dorel Living Cassy Multifunction Kitchen Island, $159.89

3. Find a rolling kitchen island that pulls double duty.

It's a rolling cart! It's a wine rack! It's a kitchen island! A rolling cart with a hardwood surface provides extra storage opportunity and countertop space in lieu of a kitchen island.


Get the look: Domenique Kitchen Cart, $144.99

4. Try a drop-leaf cart.

If you aren't working with a ton of square footage in your kitchen, then we have the solution for you. A compact kitchen cart with a drop-leaf tabletop doubles as a kitchen island in even the most cramped of spaces.



Get the look: 2L Lifestyle Granville Drop-Leaf Kitchen Cart, $140.15

5. Put a rack on it.

Searching for an affordable way to create more kitchen storage? A kitchen island rack with a built-in shelf and hanging hooks allows you to store pots, pans, oversized mixing bowls, and more without wasting any valuable cabinet space.


Get the look: VADHOLMA, $99

6. Show off a statement light fixture.

A stylish statement light can go a long way above a kitchen island. Convert a small kitchen island into a chic dining area with nothing more than a sleek metal pendant light.


Get the look: Ledbury 4-Light Kitchen Island Pendant, $139.99

7. Find a petite prep table with seating.

No kitchen island or dining room at home? No problem. A compact table with built-in stools transforms from kitchen island to dining room set to prep table in a matter of minutes.



Get the look: Winsome Drop Leaf Table With 2 Stools, $146.99

8. Get your hands on a portable kitchen island with lots of storage.

If you like to entertain but don't have a lot of kitchen or dining room space, consider a multifunctional rolling cart. Along with offering up extra storage and food prep space, it can move around from room to room with ease.


Get the look: Simple Living Hampton Kitchen Cart, $176.39

9. Consider a pub table that moonlights as a prep surface.

When all else fails, you can always count on a petite table set to pull kitchen island duty at home. A swanky pub table set with a faux marble top and stools transitions from a food prep zone to a bonafide breakfast bar in no time.


Get the look: VECELO 3-Pieces High/Pub Table Set with 2 Bar Stools, $99.79

10. Pull up a bar stool (or two).

A petite bar stool can be a game changer in your kitchen. Pull up a pair of counter-height stools to turn your kitchen island into a proper breakfast bar for cheap.

Get the look: NORDVIKEN, $55



Report an Issue

screenshot of the current page

Screenshot loading...