girl_wonder

Niche behind stove: yay or nay?

girl_wonder
last year

Does anyone have an opinion on (or experience cooking with) a niche behind their stove? The pics I’ve seen make it look cool, but when I searched older threads it sounds like some people really like theirs, but others hate it. I‘m also wondering how easy it will be to reach it because I’m short. Alternatively, I’ve seen stoves with a section of stainless steel as a backsplash, and sometimes those have shelves. Is this a good idea? Or should I just say no and have a continuation of the backsplash? (I plan to get a slide in stove). FWIW, I am finalizing my cabinet design, and currently the plan is to have a pull out spice rack to the left of the stove (so, in theory, the olive oil etc could go there). Thanks for your help.

Comments (15)

  • BlueberryBundtcake - 6a/MA
    last year

    Some things that come to my mind with shelves behind a stove are:

    a) Make sure you're not going to want to put things that are heat sensitive on the shelves.

    b) Spitting and whatnot may cause things to become dirty on those shelves depending on what you like to cook. Flat is easier to clean that shelves of stuff.

    c) Reaching over pots and pans or operating burners to get something can be a pain ... especially if you're not the one cooking. Also, might you be prone to knocking something off if reaching over ... don't want to dump things into the food or burner.

    girl_wonder thanked BlueberryBundtcake - 6a/MA
  • PRO
    Archimode Architects
    last year

    It depends on how you are planning to use the shelf/niche and how deep it will be. A shallower niche that is tiled shouldn't be too much of a problem to reach and clean. It will however get covered with grease etc and will need cleaning regularly. I've attached a couple of images. The second one, although it looks great, doesn't work so well as whatever is on that shelf will always be greasy especially because the extractor is housed in the niche as well.



    girl_wonder thanked Archimode Architects
  • rwiegand
    last year

    1) A nasty mess to clean all the time, 2) any spices or oils left there will get overheated and ruined. Behind the stove is the ideal place for an impervious, easily cleanable surface (ie no grout lines). Stainless is great; we have full height granite backsplashes and chose our most dramatic piece to put behind the stove.

    The lower picture in the post above has the definite look of a kitchen that's not meant to be cooked in!

    girl_wonder thanked rwiegand
  • megs1030
    last year

    I think it all depends on what you intend to keep there. Are the items decorative or do they serve a cooking purpose? If you want to keep oils and spices / herbs there, they are sensitive to heat and I would caution against it. Are you going to like seeing items back there or will you think it looks cluttered? How much do you like cleaning? This area will require a routine wipedown.


    As for reaching said niche... I am short also (5'3") and had a pot filler installed in our last house. I thought I would love it and it was one of the features I was most excited about in our kitchen, but it was hard to reach! I ended up not even liking it for the sheer fact that it was cumbersome to get to.

    girl_wonder thanked megs1030
  • PRO
    Patricia Colwell Consulting
    last year

    IMO always a bad idea just the same as the art tile behind the stove keep things simple and cleanable in a kitchen , you already spend a lot of time there without making it harder to clean.If you are short how do you expect to reach the stuff back there especially when you have pots on the stove, Just because you see a picture of some poor design does not make it great.

    girl_wonder thanked Patricia Colwell Consulting
  • girl_wonder
    Original Author
    last year
    last modified: last year

    Thanks everyone for your feedback! My thoughts were to make it shallow, like the first photo the Archimode had posted. I thought it looked cool and would be a good place to store oils etc to get them off the counter. But this looks like another cool idea that’s bad in practice. Thank you for saving me from a bad decision ;)

  • wilson853
    last year

    If you have the space, a two drawer stack can be used as a chef's drawer to store oils, vinegars, cooking wines, sesame seeds, pepper, salts, etc. I have one and love it. Our spices are kept in the top drawer of a different stack. With the pullout spice rack, you will be bending to see labels.



    girl_wonder thanked wilson853
  • girl_wonder
    Original Author
    last year

    Thanks wilson. The plan right now is a pull out on the left and drawers on the right. I haven’t thought this through completely but was imagining I could store oils etc in the pullout (are they hard to see? The pics I’ve seen show them being metal racks, so fairly open) and then, as you did, spices in the top drawer. I like that second pic showing the wooden spoons etc off the counter. Could that go into the pulllout?

  • Mrs Pete
    last year

    What would you personally keep in such a niche? That'd likely affect my answer.

    The worst idea here is that deep shelf with bowls and things in it. That'd be awful to clean ... but something shallow, while still creating extra work, might be useful -- if you'd use it. I wouldn't.

    I love the Chef Drawers shown here.

    girl_wonder thanked Mrs Pete
  • wilson853
    last year

    Notice that the second pic has the top and middle drawers strapped together for a bit more depth so it can handle the utensils. Visually it lines up with the adjacent drawer stack. I used a rev a shelf pullout for my utensils. It’s Only 15” wide and stores all my knives as well.

    girl_wonder thanked wilson853
  • wilson853
    last year

    This is the one that I have. It stores a lot in a small footprint. I like seeing everything at a glance. Happy that I got the utensil crocks and knife block off of the counter.

    https://www.rev-a-shelf.com/p-513-base-cabinet-pullout-knife-utensil-base-organizer-blumotion-soft-close-sink-and-base-accessories.aspx

    girl_wonder thanked wilson853
  • PRO
    Glo European Windows & Doors
    last year

    I have a higher shelf above our stove and it still gets covered with grease and is gross and nearly impossible to keep clean. Don't do it! I would definitely continue with tile up the wall.

    girl_wonder thanked Glo European Windows & Doors
  • tartanmeup
    last year

    I have narrow pullout shelves next to my stove and no problem seeing labels, etc. Helps that I don't have a TON of stuff there either. We're not gourmet cooks and keep it simple. Test it out yourself and see? Put your oils and sauces on the floor next to your stove and glance down to see what's what. Depending on what you have, you might be able to identify the bottles easily.

    girl_wonder thanked tartanmeup
  • 2ManyDiversions
    last year

    Most will say no to the niche for reasons stated above. Nevertheless, we are putting one in (DH built it, it's arched, it's spans the full width of our slide in range/induction). While the niche fits our style and yes, it'll look 'good' to us, the reason I want one is for placing oils and seasonings I'll be using while cooking. Often I've a pot going (one) that's on the cook top for hours, simmering, and adjusting the herbs and spices is on ongoing thing for me as I never like to over-season. Other times I'm using one pan for sauteing vegetables, then immediately after using the same for finishing sous vide meats/poultry/fish by fast searing, and I use another type of oil for each of these types cooking - so I like to have things ready before I start. And I also do a lot of stir frying so again, oils, etc. at hand with one pan. One might say, put the oils/spices/herbs to the side of the counter top - but I'll have other things there, ready to cook, and I like space available to move cooked items off as I start something else.

    Once I'm finished, the jars and bottles get a wipe down, and go back to their original home away from the heat. Our niche is wide, no need to reach over anything when using one pot or a teppanyaki. We are installing a pot filler, but it's a deck mount, and off to the side of the cook top, where it can swivel out to the pots/pans.

    And while I understand all the above means oil spatters, a wipe down of tile while I'm wiping the cook top and surrounding counter top won't be a difficult chore as I'll do it all at the same time.

    I think this is something most people won't want, but it truly depends on your needs and cooking styles.

    I won't place 'decorative' items on the niche, unless I find something I can place there when not cooking and move away easily prior to cooking. It would only be something to 'fill the space'.

    girl_wonder thanked 2ManyDiversions
United Kingdom
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