Designing Your Work Triangle
It may seem like an outdated concept, but the work triangle method for optimizing kitchens still provides us with helpful guidelines to improving the cooking process. The work triangle consists of three workstations strategically placed in your kitchen. The work triangle helps you move between tasks in the kitchen in a logical way that reduces your steps. This method can help make cooking not only easier but also more enjoyable.
What is the Work Triangle?
In the most basic terms, the work triangle is a method for arranging your kitchen to improve workflow. For the most part, this method will involve placing workstations near your major appliances and sink. This way, you can easily move between prep, cooking, and plating without having to take extra steps or time.
In addition to making your kitchen work better for you, this method also benefits anyone else using the kitchen during meal prep. The work triangle makes cooking with others easier, as each person will have a separate workstation that feeds into the next. This won’t look the same from kitchen to kitchen, as each person’s cooking method is unique.
How Does the Work Triangle Work?
No matter the size, every kitchen has its own challenges. Finding the right setup for your work triangle will take some time and testing, so below we look at how you can get started. The layout of your kitchen will determine how your work triangle is configured. We will take a look at three common layouts and how this method can be incorporated.
In smaller homes and apartments you often find single-wall kitchens. These kitchens can be challenging, as you have to carefully consider how everything is stored. Instead of an actual triangle layout in single-wall kitchens, all of your workstations will be in a straightline. A good way to get started is to plan a prep station near your refrigerator or near where you store your raw food. Next, you will want a station near your stove or where you cook, and finally a plating or clean-up area near the sink. You can also add a rolling kitchen island to add another work surface.
An L-shaped kitchen is a popular layout for all sizes of kitchens. If you have an open concept kitchen, then you can easily incorporate an eating zone. In this style of kitchen, you will have more space to establish your workstations. This means that it is also easier to plan a work triangle that could accommodate other cooks. However, you should still be planning workstations around appliances and where things are stored.
A U-shaped kitchen will typically be the largest of the three listed here, and this means that you will have plenty of space for storage and workstations. With cabinets on three walls, you can dedicate each wall to its own station. On the other hand, if you have more of an open concept, you can incorporate an eating zone into the layout. Be sure the stations of the work triangle are spaced out, as you don’t want someone turning around into someone else.
Final Thoughts on the Work Triangle
No matter how much space you have, a well-planned work triangle can help you. It will improve your efficiency in the kitchen, which can make cooking easier and more fun. Remember, each kitchen and chef are different, so feel free to experiment and test out other ways to arrange your workstations.
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