Temporary Kitchen Set Up

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Setting Up A Temporary Kitchen For The Renovation Period.

A well set up temporary kitchen may save your sanity. Renovating your kitchen does take time, even in the best case scenario, you will be out of your real kitchen for at least a day or two. For major renovations, you are looking at months out of a kitchen.

When my husband renovated our house, we were out of a real kitchen for about two years. Due to careful planning and setting out; the lack of a real kitchen didn’t feel overwhelming.

First, carefully pack all items from your old kitchen, keeping aside the essentials listed below.

Items you will need to transfer to your temporary kitchen:

  • Microwave and electric kettle
  • Minimal non-perishables like soup, condiments, cereal, tea, coffee, sugar, rice, pasta etc.
  • Microwave-safe cooking dishes
  • Bare minimum crockery, cutlery, cups and utensils (or disposable),
  • Dishcloths, paper towels and garbage bags.
  • Plastic washing up basin
  • Fridge/freezer or Esky/cooler
  • BBQ outside for a little variation
  • Portable electric hotplate or induction hotplate
  • Pack all other non-essential kitchen items away in carefully labelled boxes ready to transfer to your new kitchen.

Using a laundry as a temporary kitchen.

A laundry room makes a great temporary kitchen. Separate food prep areas from dirty clothes and harmful detergents. Laundries are ideal because it is already a “wet” area, however, care must be taken due to the hazardous items that lurk within. Ensure you have enough storage space and access to running water.

  • Pack away laundry items that don’t require access for a short time – such as old towels, detergents that get intermittent use etc.
  • Thoroughly clean and disinfect shelves and a bench area that will be used for food/utensil storage and prep – keep a strict separation of this area from detergents and dirty clothes during the period this area is to be used as a kitchen. Many germs can be spread by dirty laundry and laundry detergents and cleaning agents can be hazardous if ingested.
  • Set the microwave on a sturdy shelf or bench-top where it doesn’t wobble and will not fall.

Using a bookshelf, table or drawer unit as a temporary kitchen.

If a laundry is not an option for a temporary kitchen another great option is a bookshelf or drawer unit. If your old kitchen was a reasonable quality – keep a portion of bench and cabinetry after strip out to use as your temporary kitchen in a suitable location.

  • Place your temporary kitchen away from thoroughfares and renovation work.
  • Plan to do the dishes in a plastic basin, another sink or the bathtub. If you will have very limited access to running water, use disposable plates and cups.
  • Move your old refrigerator, small mini-fridge or Esky to a convenient space close to a water source.
  • Small appliances such as microwaves, toasters or toaster ovens, portable hot plates, slow cookers and small electric grills will be immensely helpful in preparing home-cooked meals.

How Do I Prepare Meals During My Kitchen Renovation?

  • Prior to the renovation, fill the freezer (providing you are keeping your fridge/freezer in the house during renovation) full of easily microwavable meals such as soups, stews, pasta sauces and pies.
  • Learn how to microwave pasta, rice and jacket potatoes for a simple, but filling accompaniment to meals.


Smith & Smith is renowned for beautiful made-to-measure kitchens at friendly prices. You can rely on our 40 years of bespoke kitchen design and cabinetmaking experience. We are cabinetmakers – you buy directly from the manufacturer and cut out the middleman. Clients have returned to Smith & Smith for kitchens in their second home, property development as well as holiday homes.



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