How Much Should A Breakfast Bar Overhang?

If you are installing a breakfast bar, you want to ensure that you include an overhang in your design. This overhang provides adequate legroom for individuals sitting at your breakfast bar. If you are wondering how much of an overhang you need, we have done the research to get the answer for you. 

The overhang of your breakfast bar should be between 8 inches and 15 inches. This measurement depends on the amount of space you have available to dedicate to your breakfast bar, the height of the people using it, and the type of material you are using for the counter. 

While we've just provided the suggested range for the breakfast bar overhang, you will want to choose the specific measurement based on the various factors mentioned above. Let's take a closer look at the breakfast bar concept to help you select the correct overhang measurement for you.

Luxury kitchen interior with breakfast bar and rustic elements, How Much Should A Breakfast Bar Overhang?

Why Have A Breakfast Bar? 

If you're trying to decide on the correct overhang for your breakfast bar, you've probably already answered this question. But if you are still considering adding a breakfast bar, it might be helpful to know why it is useful in any kitchen. A breakfast bar provides extra counter space in the kitchen, usually with bar stools positioned around it for seating as well. People use this space to eat, do work or hobbies, or socialize. Use this area as a space to serve food or provide extra seating during parties. In some kitchen layouts, the breakfast bar replaces a dining room table altogether. 

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Panelled kitchen interior

Breakfast bars can either be extended from another counter in your kitchen or built to stand alone like a kitchen island. 

How Does One Sit At A Breakfast Bar? 

As mentioned above, you typically want to use barstools or taller chairs for seating around the breakfast bar. The height of the stools depends on the height you choose for your breakfast bar but should allow ample legroom between the countertop and knees. 

What Is The Standard Stool Height? 

Bar stools are typically 29 inches to 32 inches tall. This height will be sufficient for the standard bar height of 42 inches. Standard bar stools come in a variety of colors and styles to fit your design needs. Click here

to see these standard bar stools on Amazon. 

Remember that breakfast bars that differ in height from the standard 42 inches require an appropriately sized stool to reach so that the countertop. For more information about stools, check out our article, "How Tall Should Bar Stools Be?"

Interior of the modern apartment kitchen with breakfast bar

Breakfast Bar Specifications

If you are building a breakfast bar from scratch, you will want to have some knowledge of the measurements necessary for building the breakfast bar. While the actual measurements depend on your specific needs, some guidelines are generally accepted for this type of design. 

How Tall Should A Breakfast Bar Be? 

Breakfast bars should be between 36 inches and 42 inches tall, with 42 inches being the standard height. When choosing your breakfast bar height, it depends on how the breakfast bar stands in relation to the rest of the kitchen. If your breakfast bar is going to be a continuation of an existing countertop or an addition to your counter to make an L-shape, you will want the breakfast bar the be the same height as the counter, like this example below: 

Spacious open plan kitchen with breakfast bar

Also, choose the same height as your countertops if you want to create a breakfast bar that is a standalone island. However, if you're going to create a breakfast bar on the other side of the existing counter space, you want the breakfast bar to be slightly taller or shorter than the current counter. Check out this example of a taller breakfast bar below:

Woman working in her modern open kitchen adjacent to the dinning

How Deep Should A Breakfast Bar Be? 

Unlike some of the other measurements we've discussed, the depth of a breakfast bar is pretty straightforward. A breakfast bar should be 24 inches deep. This depth gives you an appropriate amount of space on your counter without being too big. 

Breakfast Bar Overhang: 3 Factors to Consider

Now that we know what a breakfast bar is and how it should be measured, we can discuss the overhang in-depth. The overhang is the area that extends from the usual countertop, where your seating goes. Remember, the measurement of the overhang depends on several factors: 

1. Available Kitchen Space

If you have a large room to fit your breakfast bar, you can get away with adding a broader overhang to provide more legroom and more counter space. If you have a smaller room to work with, you can go with the minimum overhang of about 8 inches. You will want to find a good balance between not taking up too much space and still having enough room for people to sit. 

2. Bartop Height While Seated

You cannot predict the height of every guest in your home. However, you can consider the height of the individuals who live there regularly. If you have very tall people in your family, they require more legroom using taller and broader overhang than a family of shorter individuals. Remember, you want those seated at your breakfast bar to be comfortable.

3. Bartop Material 

The overhang of your breakfast bar is typically not supported from beneath like the rest of the countertop, and some materials do better without support than others. If your bar overhang is made from a material that can support itself, like quartz, you can have a broader overhang with less support. However, if you use a material that does not support itself, like granite, you need to either measure narrower overhang or install more supports beneath. 

How Do You Decorate A Breakfast Bar?

Now that we've discussed the technical aspects let's have a little fun. Here are some great ways to bring some style to your breakfast bar. 

Unique Stools 

Kitchen with stylish green wall in warm colors

You may use your breakfast bar for serious work, but that doesn't mean that seating space has to be serious. Add some flair to your breakfast bar with bar stools in interesting shapes and colors. If you already have plain stools, consider adding cushions in different colors and patterns to add an interesting element. 

Click here to see these barstools on Amazon.

Decorative Food Storage

Beautiful modern house kitchen

Your breakfast bar is a great place to store some of the more appealing items in your kitchen. Use interesting containers or display colorful food items to decorate while making good use of your space. Candy jars, bowls of fruit, and cereals are some examples of food to store in view on your breakfast bar.  

Click here to see this candy jar set on Amazon.

Seasonal Floral Arrangements

Interior of the modern apartment kitchen with breakfast bar

Plants can add a bit of nature to your breakfast bar. Take advantage of the seasons to keep your decor interesting. Tulips in the spring can be replaced with sunflowers in the summer and pumpkins in the fall. 

Click here to see this vase set on Amazon.

Get inspired to decorate your breakfast bar; check out some of our decor articles on decorating kitchen islands and counters.  

Final Thoughts

When it comes to remodeling and decor, so much depends on the space being renovated. Standard measurements are a great jumping-off point to keep you on the right track with everything in proportion. However, feel free to use these measurements as a guide and modify your space to serve your home best. 

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