How to set up a temporary kitchen during remodel? [2023]

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How to set up a temporary kitchen during remodel? Well, we have the answer for you! Renovating a place while living there isn’t a piece of cake. The entire space becomes a mess making it difficult for the homeowners to maneuver around the house comfortably. And kitchen renovation is no exception.

how to set up a temporary kitchen during remodel

Here are the key points to consider when setting up a temporary kitchen during a remodel:

  1. Select a suitable area for your temporary kitchen setup, away from the working area, and choose a place that’s both functional and convenient for you.
  2. Begin by packing things up and decluttering your kitchen.
  3. Make a list of the things you’ll need for your temporary kitchen and store non-essentials away.
  4. Plan for a temporary sink and mini kitchen counter. Consider using a bathroom or utility sink. Also stock bottled water.
  5. Cook stove-free meals or use small appliances such as a hot plate or slow cooker.
  6. Use a mini fridge or relocate your refrigerator to a different location during the remodel.
  7. Stock up on paper products for dishes and choose necessary items such as a kitchen table, microwave, and storage bins.

Follow these great tips when setting up a temporary kitchen. You can survive the renovation period without spending extra money on renting out a temporary living space.

Since you need enough space to prepare meals, it seems impossible to be left with any if you plan to remodel your entire kitchen. Though home delivery and takeout are pretty accessible, their excess is neither good for health nor a budget-friendly option.

Also, depending upon the scale of your project, renovation may take up to several weeks. Meanwhile, a stack of dirty dishes piling up in the sink will already be giving you nightmares. So, you can’t expect to live without any space for cooking meals and washing dishes throughout the time.

The best way is to set up a temporary kitchen. It’s also a great opportunity for DIY-ers to display their skills to create a temporary kitchen until their kitchen remodel.

What is a Temporary Kitchen for a Kitchen Remodel?

As you have made up your mind to do a kitchen remodel, you must set up a temporary kitchen to survive the renovation period. It’s a temporary setup to provide you with a space for washing, cooking, and eating meals. You can make use of this space until your old kitchen remodeling work is done.

how to set up a temporary kitchen during remodel period

However, this setup does need some planning ahead. Many homeowners have numerous questions in their minds as to how they can get all their daily activities done without a “proper kitchen.”

So, we will be sharing some tips to help you learn about how to set up temporary kitchens and what things you need.

Selecting an Area for Your Temporary Kitchen Setup

Now comes the next step of finding a suitable place to set up a temp kitchen. A spare room in your house is put to good use at this moment. It’s also important that this temporary kitchen isn’t near the working area.

A kitchen is the heart of the house, where a family catches up every day, and the dining table becomes more lively. Choose a place that’s both functional and convenient for you.

If you plan to move your fridge and other small appliances, then you’ll need to consult an electrician too. He’ll check out the available switchboards so you can safely plug in your appliances.

Where to Begin?

If the renovation is going to start in a week, you need to start packing things up and stock up on the necessary items you’re going to need the most. A garage can be your transitory storage room for this period.

how to set up a temporary kitchen during remodel packing

Meanwhile, take this opportunity to declutter your kitchen. Sort out what is worth keeping and let go of the rest. I did this when we were moving to our new house last year, and it actually felt like a weight was off my shoulders.

Since a lot of dusty work will be going on for weeks, remember to have plastic sheets to cover your living room furniture and interim kitchen.

What Do I Need for a Temporary Kitchen?

Ask yourself what things you are going to use daily. Make a list to keep only that stuff out and pack everything else up. Most likely, you aren’t going to hold a party during the renovation, so you can do without many things that aren’t requisites of daily cooking, like perhaps a mini fridge.

A cardboard box is a handy option you may use to store extra stuff. Carefully place the contents of kitchen cabinets that aren’t necessary to move out.

How Do You Make a Temporary Sink?

You’re done with eating and now going to wash dishes. But wait! The kitchen renovation is still in process, and you don’t have a sink in your makeshift kitchen. Now, what to do?

Doing dishes without a sink is indeed tricky. But you must do something to stay organized.

For the time being, you may opt for a bathroom sink or a utility sink. Utility sinks are considered comparatively useful because the bathroom sink is usually too shallow for doing dishes.

How Do You Meal Prep Without a Stove?

Cooking food without a stove in your temporary kitchen setup isn’t an uphill battle. You can search for stove-free meal ideas and recipes to prepare meals for your family.

You can also plan your meals and freeze them to use later. Plastic containers are the optimum choice to store your frozen meal. Therefore, it’s wise to invest in some plastic products to use during kitchen remodel.

How Do I Get Around Without an Oven?

A microwave and toaster oven are kitchen essentials. However, during renovation, you don’t have access to a full kitchen, so it’s normal not to be able to use them.

But there are other options to help you eat warm food. Small appliances such as a hot plate or slow cooker can serve as alternatives that stand the test of time.

What Food Does Not Need to Be Refrigerated?

Did you ever imagine a kitchen without a fridge? Well, many of us believe that food must be kept in the refrigerator if we want it to last longer. In fact, the opposite is true in some cases.

There are many food items you can expect to stay fresh, retaining their nutrients and taste at room temperature. Hence, if your temporary kitchen doesn’t have significant space to keep a fridge, you’ll still be able to eat a lot of food from your pantry storage.

Here are a few to name:

  • Bread
  • Butter
  • Tomatoes
  • Potatoes
  • Basil
  • Honey
  • Cucumber
  • Corn
  • Canned chicken
  • Tuna
  • Cheddar cheese
  • Rice
  • Pasta
  • Lentils
  • Eggs
  • And many fruits

What Can I Eat Without a Microwave or Stove?

In a temporary kitchen, you won’t have enough space to install a stove or have a counter to place the microwave. You to stock up on items in your pantry area so you can feed your family during this time.

how to set up a temporary kitchen during remodel microwave

No need to worry about how to cook food when your kitchen remodel is still in process. There are several pantry items you can rely on instead of cooking.

Roasted sweet potato salad, grilled shrimp, nut butter, oatmeal, canned beans, roast pork, Rotisserie chicken, veggies, and turkey sandwiches are among those lifesaver pantry items.

Where Do You Put a Refrigerator in a Kitchen Remodel?

Unlike many small appliances, a refrigerator takes up a lot of space. And it’s also necessary to move it out of the kitchen before the workers start tearing down the place.

Since a refrigerator is necessary to store cold items, you have to relocate it somewhere else. Make sure to check the new location with your electrician first as to where you are going to plug it in.

You can move it anywhere with a viable outlet. Usually, refrigerators have rollers, so it’s easier to roll them on the floor. Avoid putting the refrigerator on a carpet.

Does the Fridge Have to Be in The Kitchen?

Your renovation project may take longer than expected. So, it’s better to find a new location to move your fridge out of the old kitchen.

In case you can’t repurpose your old refrigerator, consider buying a mini fridge. It’s easier to accommodate in confined spaces, and you can resell it if possible.

How Do You Install a Temporary Sink During a Remodel?

When a kitchen remodel takes place, it seems like the whole house has been turned upside down. To stay organized is nearly impossible with a stack of dirty dishes in your temporary kitchen sink.

You may choose to wash dishes in your bathroom sink, but not everyone does (like my mom). So many would prefer to install a temporary one.

First, you have to find a location where running water is easily available. Then look for a sturdy tub (can be a laundry tub or a bathroom tub) large enough to hold your dishes while washing. Fill it up with soapy water (or consider topping it with boiling water for oily plates).

How Do You Make a Temporary Counter?

How am I supposed to cook anything without a prep space? This question might pop up in your mind first after setting up an interim kitchen.

You may see other people suggesting you buy a worktable. However, I don’t encourage spending money on things that can be done more efficiently without doing so. You should think of ways that make life easier.

The better option is to use your foldable kitchen table as a prep space. Otherwise, you can also reuse the old kitchen cabinet to make a DIY kitchen counter.

Dining Room During Remodel

If you were used to having your dining table in your kitchen, then you’ll also need to take it out during remodel. Usually, in small houses or apartments, they don’t have a separate dining space and the kitchen’s seating serves as a dining room.

how to set up a temporary kitchen during remodel out

What you can do to set up a temporary dining room is take your kitchen table out to place it either in a corner of your living room or outside.

There is another option too. What do you think about a folding table? It’s portable and you can take it out only when needed. A folding table, in my opinion, makes a perfect moving dining table.

Washing Dishes: How to Deal with Dirty Dishes Without a Sink?

The best thing you can do to reduce your stress and the burden of washing without a sink is to stock up on paper products. You can buy plenty of paper plates to use during kitchen remodeling.

Despite that, you’ll have some dirty pans and cutlery to clean. Keeping a large bin in temporary kitchens give you a place to put dirty dishes in it. A large bin can also be used to carry dishes to the washing station and dry them, but make sure you have a good dish soap.

What Items Do You Want for Your Temporary Kitchen?

You’ll always need certain items even if your kitchen is under renovation. These items include:

  • Refrigerator
  • Storage bins
  • Kitchen table
  • Crock Pot or microwave
  • Paper plates and cutlery
  • Plastic for floor and furniture covering
  • Microwave-safe containers

How Do You Store Kitchen Items When Remodeling?

You create a temporary kitchen to go through the renovation without spending extra bucks to rent an outstide location. After taking things out for daily use, you’re still left with many items to be stored.

There are many storage options for you to make use of during remodeling. You can choose from cardboard boxes, large storage bags, packing tape, and reusable storage bins. Meanwhile, you can put plastic utensils, cups, cutlery, and other stuff needed on shelves and bookcases.


Experts say that this kind of kitchen setup is a great temporary option to get through the renovation period smoothly. Instead of renting out a place to live temporarily, you may opt for this and save money to invest in designing a brand-new kitchen.

Ariel Path

With over three decades of experience in food manufacturing and kitchen design, I bring a wealth of knowledge to the table. My expertise spans across various aspects of the culinary world, from kitchen appliances to cooking techniques, food selection, and promoting a healthy lifestyle. My ultimate goal is to educate and inspire you in creating your dream kitchen, where functionality meets aesthetics. As a trusted source, I strive to provide valuable insights and guidance to make your kitchen remodel an enjoyable and successful experience. Together, let's transform your space into a culinary haven that reflects your unique style and meets your specific needs. See more details here.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Avatar photo
    Emily Nelson

    I recently went through a kitchen remodel, and one thing we didn’t consider was the location of the temporary kitchen. We set it up right next to the working area, making it difficult to move around the house during the renovation. In hindsight, we should have picked a more convenient location for the temporary kitchen.

    1. cropped ariel path
      Ariel Path

      Thank you for sharing your experience. The location of the temporary kitchen is important, as you pointed out. It’s best to pick a location that’s functional and convenient for you and away from the working area to make it easier to move around the house during the renovation. Another tip we would suggest is to invest in some plastic products, like containers and plates, that can be used during the remodel and then easily disposed of afterward to make cleaning up a breeze.

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