Coffee bar ideas – 8 easy ways to bring this trend into your home

Coffee bars may sound like a luxury, but they are an easy addition to bring into your kitchen to elevate making your morning brew

Coffee bars
(Image credit: Sma Frost/Hugo Landa)

Whether it is the first flat white of the day or post-dinner espresso that cements your perfect hosting skills, coffee bar ideas are proving more popular than ever and it seems that they are now quite the norm in a kitchen design. 

After all, it is only natural that we try to recreate the same energy and joy that our favorite coffee shops bring to us, in our home spaces. According to experts, an at-home coffee bar can make a lot of sense for households that want to make the most of their favorite coffee makers, not to mention, streamline the daily grind. 

'I like coffee bars for many reasons,' shares Iliana Incandela, director of design at coffee brand Bruvi. 'If coffee is part of your daily routine or if multiple people in your home drink coffee, having a dedicated and organized area with easy access for everyone to get to their favorite coffee supplies is super helpful.'

Iliana Incandela, Director of Brand, Content and Design at Bruvi
Iliana Incandela

Iliana Incandela is the Director of Brand, Content, and Design at Bruvi. She builds and shapes the visual identity of Bruvi and its house coffee brands. She uses her decade of global experience in design and music to create best-in-class print, digital, and audio content for the brand.

8 coffee bar ideas that are charming and energizing

The best modern-day coffee machines are key, but just as you favor a particular coffee shop over another, the aesthetic of the space, and the experience it creates, is essential to an invigorating experience. 

'Coffee bars and areas are often a space that is overlooked in the overall kitchen design, and by marrying function and aesthetics, it allows for appliances such as a coffee maker to be highlighted,' say principals of DISC Interiors, David John Dick and Krista Schrock. 'With coffee shops having such a moment in our culture, we love to bring this excitement to the home.' 

Krista Schrock + David John Dick, principals
David John Dick and Krista Schrock

David John Dick and Krista Schrock are the principals of DISC Interiors. The LA-based interior design studio has a beautiful philosophy of helping a home reveal its soul over time, through thoughtful design detail that brings purpose and creates harmony between the interior and architectural build of a space.  

1. Let your coffee bar showcase interesting tile designs

Coffee bar essentials in wooden hutch with glazed grid tiles in maroon and decorated shelving

(Image credit: Sam Frost)

Much like a kitchen backsplash can frame an entire kitchen space, let the imperfect charm of a small square Zelige tile or another kitchen wall tile style create an intimate canvas for your coffee bar as the DISC Interiors design pair have done in this coffee bar. 

'We love to showcase materials in a coffee bar, such as a dramatic handcrafted tiled backsplash that is properly lit, or a dramatic stone, marble, or quartzites.' The imperfect tile surface allows light to bounce and reflect around the space, adding intrigue, design depth, and luminosity.

2. Favor streamlined simplicity

Open wooden kitchen shelving with tile wall and simple white color scheme with houseplants

Space created by Devon Grace Interiors

(Image credit: Devon Grace Interiors, Dustin Halleck)

A coffee bar addition should create streamlined surroundings, not another space for clutter. Approach yours with a 'less is more' philosophy to bring effortless-looking design essence to your nook. 

'When styling a coffee bar on a project, I really focus on creating beautiful functionality,' says Laetitia Wajnapel, Interior Designer and founder of Cinquiéme Gauche who says that you do not want to 'overload' this area. Tapping into your minimalist design eye might be most rewarding here: 'This is where it becomes important to select each item thoughtfully: if each individual functional item is also beautiful, then there is less need to add decorative stuff.'

Laetitia Wagnapel
Laëtitia Wajnapel

Laëtitia Wajnapel is the creator of Cinquième Gauche, a full-service interior design studio based in LA. Wajnapel who was born and raised in Paris, started her career as a journalist before branching out into styling. Her design practice is led by a love of storytelling, making each project truly unique to the client.

3. Hide a coffee bar behind doors

kitchen shelving idea with marble

(Image credit: Sims Hilditch)

Adding a coffee bar into your kitchen, dining, or open-plan living room space should elevate the look and use of the space. To keep it ticking over well, and busy in all the right ways, make sure you stay on top of decluttering and take organization seriously for a tidy aesthetic. 

If you have a bigger household, where no one can settle on a preferred cappuccino cup style, not to mention, how to organize the kitchen shelving, lean into the notion of an invisible kitchen coffee bar using sliding kitchen cabinet doors instead. 

Remember, that it will be opened on occasion: 'A simple but beautiful way to style your coffee bar is to include organization components that blend into the environment, like clear glass or acrylic,' says Iliana. 'I’m also a fan of marble or wood lazy Susans that can rotate for 360-degree access to supplies. The key is to keep with your personal style while making things accessible and clutter-free.' 

Amazon has classic wooden lazy Susans and marble and wood designs which are sure to work in a timeless kitchen space.

4. Let exquisite appliances steal the show

Curated coffee bar with ceramic cups and quality appliances and small lampshade giving a warm glow, all cocooned in a mid-century style wooden cabinet

(Image credit: Hugo Landa Garcia)

It is true, coffee makers are one of the rare appliances that are simply quite beautiful. And any machine that invites you to reminisce about an espresso taken at a coffee bar in Milan is a good one. 

The style of maker will naturally depend on how you prefer to make coffee. Co-founders of Studio Gutow,  Lisa Berman and Melissa Rohani, note how this can shape your style of coffee bar: 'We recommend investing in quality appliances to enhance and elevate your at home coffee bar!'

Co-founders Lisa Berman & Melissa Rohani! of Studio Gutow
Lisa Berman and Melissa Rohani

Co-founded by Melissa Rohani and Lisa Berman, Studio Gutow officially launched in January 2022, following the successful completion of their remarkable 3-year Emerald Bay project. What followed was years of collaboration on projects up and down the California Coast. Lisa's passion for design comes from her childhood years which her father, an avid collector, formed. Melissa's drive for interior design comes from her years as an antique dealer.

5. Create an in-hutch coffee bar

Coffee station with Dualit coffee maker

(Image credit: Dualit)

We have mentioned how the hutch has been lending itself to relocation and reinvention in our homes over the years. If you do not have any space in the kitchen for a coffee bar, but do not quite want to demote its presence to the walk-in pantry or back kitchen, consider using your hutch as inspired by H&G's own Feng Shui expert, Suzanne Roynon

Suzanne highlights how it frees up counter space in a compact kitchen, leaving more room for tasty coffee beans and for blending organizational paraphernalia into the landscape. 

'While having all the appliances is our preference, the space should provide enough room for a coffee maker, storage for coffee and mugs, and ample counter space for stirring in milk,' adds Lisa and Mellisa. 'The key is to tailor the coffee bar to your specific needs and preferences, ensuring it remains a functional and enjoyable area!'

6. Create a coffee shop aesthetic

Coffee station lit up

(Image credit: Krantz Designs / Paul Craig)

For a true coffee shop aesthetic, keep barware and coffee-making essentials styled, and well within reach. 

'Display ingredients like syrups, sugars, and coffee pods in sophisticated or neutral containers that complement your decor. Use a covered canister or nearby drawer to store less attractive coffee tools and minimize clutter,' says Iliana. 

For good looks, as well as longevity, choose neutral kitchen colors that are adaptable, this way you will not have to completely redress the space should you decide to bring an unexpected pop of color to your coffee nook.

7. Add flourishes of nature, and of the season

A white kitchen unit with drawers and shelf with a splashback of geometric patterned white, blue and grey, blue chair and marbled worktop, and blue and white patterned light shade.

(Image credit: Future)

Iliana reminds us to tap into a fun element and be attuned with the time of year too, considering holiday additions and unique flourishes that make the space always feel with the times.

'Having fun glassware or seasonal mugs is always a great idea and seasonal decor touches such as fresh flowers or greenery to add extra personality.' Whether trailing from a higher shelf, or quaint, colorful and mingled in with an eclectic mix of espresso cups, a kitchen houseplant is sure to elevate your dedicated coffee corner.

8. Add interest with layers of texture

Coffee bar essentials in wooden hutch with decorated shelving, and chocolate brown tiling

Coffee bar designed by DISC Interiors

(Image credit: Sam Frost)

Be it through a marble wall tile or rustic decorative pots and ceramics, texture will bring movement and interest to a space, sure to help recreate your favorite coffee shop moments. 

Keep subtle contrast at the fore of your coffee bar aesthetic to complement a minimal trio of sugar jars with your best coffee machine, or even with a quaint French presspour-over coffee maker, or pod machine.


Should I have a coffee bar in my kitchen?

You might still be thinking that a dedicated coffee station pushing the bar a little. We love espresso, but should we corner off even a small section of our kitchen or dining room only for a humble cappuccino? These looks have solidified our thirst not just for a perfectly formed flat white, but also for a beautifully styled and curated coffee station wherein we might fain impersonate our favorite baristas.

'When you’re entertaining for the holidays or special occasions, creating a dedicated area for guests to serve themselves can be a great way to take some pressure off of the host,' says Incandela who notes that a single-serve brewer (like Bruvi) is an ideal coffee machine candidate to let everyone choose exactly what coffee they prefer.

Can you station a coffee bar in a small space?

There is no reason why not, so long as it is kept simple and uncluttered, it might even add more function to a busy kitchen: 'You can absolutely station a coffee bar in a small space,' says Iliana. 'It's all about getting creative with how you set up your supplies - there’s no wrong way to do this! Stacking or hanging can help achieve a functional and attractive coffee bar in a smaller footprint. For example, I’ve used a clear 3 tiered spice drawer organizer tucked under an acrylic computer riser to store coffee pods, and placed all my glassware, mugs, sugar and syrups on top.'

For small kitchens with little counter space, make sure you put kitchen cabinets to good use: 'If working with a smaller counter space, perhaps a kitchen with no dedicated coffee bar (like my own kitchen!), keep things even simpler,'  Laëtitia tells H&G. 'Anything that doesn't need to be on the countertop can be stored either in the cabinets above or below or in a dedicated coffee drawer.' When it comes to how many coffee syrups is too many, only you will know, but Wajnapel recommends a lighter approach for small spaces: 'I don't think anyone needs five different syrup dispensers as part of a home coffee set up!''

What should I have in my coffee station?

The coffee maker will, of course, be a defining part of your coffee station design. Do not be put off thinking you need to spend into the thousands, as an inexpensive coffee maker, that is good-looking, and of good quality, might still be the starting point you need to elevate the space. 

'A good coffee station to me needs a bean grinder, a coffee kettle, your coffee machine,' shares Laëtitia. 'To this, you can add a couple of interesting mugs or cups, a vessel containing spoons and another vessel containing your coffee beans or pods if you use an espresso machine. To add a little color to the area, you could keep a single flower in a bud vase somewhere on the counter. If every component of your "coffee making kit" is visually pleasing, there really is no need to add much!'

Remember too that whether you keep a small pod or drip coffee maker, you will need water nearby, consider this to ensure your kitchen layout remains streamlined. 'Ensure the sink is conveniently located near water sources and provide accessible electrical outlets for essential appliances. Invest in key items like a quality coffee maker, a small sink with filtered water, and a compact drink fridge for milk and extras – these form the core of your coffee bar,' adds Lisa.

Getting all of your coffee bar essentials in order is just the start. How you stage the surroundings might not grind the beans themselves, but it will play a pivotal role in bringing flair to the illustrious event that is making coffee, be it bulletproof coffee, a relaxing morning latte, or vivacious post-dinner espresso. 

Consider where you are carving out space for your coffee bar and lean into the surroundings. A retro grinder might be the best match for a traditional kitchen that wants a modern accent, while if you have a white kitchen, adorned with marble countertops, and a minimalist aesthetic, an elegant machine in stainless steel will be a natural continuation of its heightened level of luxury.

Camille Dubuis-Welch
Contributing Editor

Camille is the former deputy editor of Real Homes where she covered a broad range of topics, including house tours, small space design, and gardens. She studied English language and Italian at the University of Manchester and during a year abroad studying linguistics and history of art in Bologna, Italy she started documenting her adventures and observations in a blog. Camille is always creating and spends her downtime painting, taking photos, traveling, and writing short stories.