What Are The Pros And Cons Of An Island Cooktop?

Paige Hanawalt
by Paige Hanawalt

Setting up your dream kitchen can be a lot of fun! The number of customizable options available to every homeowner is amazing and extremely plentiful. However, because there are so many options, it can also become a source of many conflicting decisions.

One of the many choices you’ll be making will involve the cooktop: where it will go, choosing between gas and electric, and so on. Many people setting up their homes simply place their oven cooktop along with their counters and don’t bother considering other options.

Since you’ve clicked on this article, you are thinking about another, more intriguing option: adding a cooktop to the kitchen island.

The pros of an island cooktop include a more social cooking setup, more cooking options, and creating a kitchen with a modern, unique appeal. The cons for an island cooktop include an expensive renovation, needing a lot of room, limiting material options, and not having a backsplash.

Though deciding whether or not to add an extra cooktop can feel arbitrary to some, this decision can greatly impact how you use your kitchen for years to come! A kitchen is where many wonderful life moments will happen, so making sure it’s perfect for you and your family is incredibly important.

It isn’t a simple decision, but that’s where we come in! This article will help bring to light what situations and lifestyles work with an island cooktop, and which do not.

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The Advantages Of An Island Cooktop

Though an island cooktop sounds like a crazy idea to some people, there are several great reasons to install one into your home!

Social Cooking

If you love entertaining your guests during parties, get-togethers, or special occasions, then you know how annoying it can be to talk and cook at the same time. No one wants to have their back turned to all the fun happening, especially in their own house!

An island cooktop easily fixes this problem. Cooking and socializing can become a constant part of your day-to-day cooking.

If getting involved with your family and friends is a top priority for you, and want cooking to be no exception, then this is the choice for you!

Gas/Electric Cooking Options

When selecting between a gas or electric stovetop, some people have a hard time picking between the two. With an island cooktop, you don’t have to choose between them: just have one of each! This way, you get the best of both worlds!

Gas and electric cooktops each have benefits: most notably, gas is better for searing, while electric is better for baking. If you love to cook, having both options available is often greatly desired. Island cooktops can turn that fantasy into a reality.

You don’t have to get both if it’s not a big deal to you, or if you prefer one style of cooktop over another. This also makes the selection cheaper and easier to install, making synchronized cooktops just as valid of an option.

Extra Space

Having an island gives you extra cooking and preparing space in the kitchen. Adding a cooktop to the island is just another plus for people that find themselves needing more burners to cook on. This is beneficial for people cooking large quantities, or often having two people wanting to cook at the same time.

Some people like the island cooktop simply because they enjoy cooking things in a less crowded space. Having every burner filled can get messy and frantic very quickly, especially if you are trying to keep all your necessary ingredients close by. With an island cooktop, however, you could easily space your cooking endeavors between your main cooktop and the island one.

A Modern Look

People have a lot of different opinions about the island cooktop, but one thing can’t be denied: an island cooktop brings a unique and slender style! Adding more modern options to your kitchen puts you ahead of the curve, and leaves you something to be proud of.

Something about a cooktop island adds a bit of pizzazz to a kitchen’s atmosphere, especially the electric stovetop versions. The sleek design blends perfectly with the island and catches the eye, with an almost futuristic appeal. It will make your kitchen look beautiful, and it will be the envy of all your friends, that’s for sure!

The Disadvantages of Island Cooktops

While an island cooktop does create an interesting and fun kitchen design, there are drawbacks to consider as well.

A Costly Renovation

Something that will stop many people in their tracks is the cost. Kitchens are already expensive in their own right, but adding an extra gas or electric line, along with the extra counters and ventilation will compound the cost significantly. Not to mention any extra features like lights, plumbing if you want a sink, using more expensive materials, and so on.

Don’t forget: the bigger the island is, the more the island itself will cost you. Having extra space is always nice, but consider what you’ll need realistically. Adding a kitchen island is already going to add to your total cost, and a cooktop will only raise it further.

If you already have an island and are looking to just install a cooktop, this could still be expensive. Adding gas/electric lines into an already finished kitchen is a costly endeavor, so make sure you know your budget.

Needs A Lot Of Room

Some kitchens are sadly not even able to have an island in the first place since certain parameters must be kept. If your kitchen is smaller in size, an island may not feasibly fit into your limited kitchen space.

The smallest kitchen island is about 4 square feet, and most people interested in getting a kitchen island are thinking about the bigger ones. Having the proper amount of room between the island and kitchen counters is important, as safety could be an issue if it is too cramped.

Extra Ventilation

If you already have an island, don’t think you’re out of the woods yet! You may need extra ventilation above the island cooktop as well, which could deter a lot of people. Extra vents or fans may not be an appealing addition since they could obstruct your view of surrounding rooms and throw off the visual style of the kitchen.

If you are even considering an island cooktop, make sure you have room for it before you do anything else!

Limits Options

If you want a cooktop with your island, then some material options are immediately deemed incompatible. This can be a huge problem for people looking to blend the style of their island with the rest of the kitchen. Cheaper materials are, more often than not, not compatible with the island cooktop. For example, wood-based materials are out of the question, for obvious reasons.

Kitchen islands need to compliment the rest of the kitchen in some way, whether it be directly matching the surrounding cupboards and counters, or at least match it in some way. A cooktop might throw off the style you have planned in your head.

This might not be a concern for some people, but for those wanting their kitchens to be the pride of their home, this could be a dealbreaker.

No Backsplash

If you are used to cooking with a backsplash, then you don’t often realize how important it can be for cooking extremely hot foods. Grease in particular has a nasty habit of splashing about and trying to land on the skin. If you’ve got kids sitting at your island while you are cooking breakfast, you can see the problem.

There are installable backsplash alternatives, of course, but they also add to the cost and aren’t always the best looking. Island cooktops are mostly praised for being so sleek and modern, but adding a divide can throw off the whole appeal. Be sure to always check out the various options available and see what they look like.

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What’s the Verdict?

There are plenty of situations where a cooktop island fits better in a home, but it mainly relies on your preferences. Knowing exactly what you want makes quite a bit of difference when building or renovating a kitchen.

If cooking is your pastime and you look for any and every opportunity to do so, or you love throwing house parties and are looking for a way to be involved when cooking, then an island cooktop is probably what you’re looking for. If you’re looking for simple, standard options, or aren’t as worried about the cooking process in the long run, then an island cooktop may be more than you need.

With that being said, remember that everyone is different! If you want an island cooktop just because it looks cool, then get it! If you love cooking but don’t like the idea of having a cooktop with your island, then don’t’ get it! Make your kitchen perfect for you and your situation, and everything will work out in the end.

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Paige Hanawalt
Paige Hanawalt

Paige is an elementary school librarian with a passion for writing. Her hobbies include reading an exorbitant amount of fantasy, slowly teaching herself to draw, and home decor. While she isn't the most talented artist or interior designer, what she lacks in skill she more than makes up for in enthusiasm. When she's not curled up with a book, you can certainly find her curled over the keyboard.

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