Bluestem’s Guide to Butler’s Pantry and Auxiliary Kitchen Spaces

It’s a well-known fact that kitchens tend to become the gathering place of the household. Who can say if it’s the aromas coming from Sunday dinner (meatloaf!) or the inherent coziness or even the proximity to snacks, folks come together in the kitchen. With so many people coming in and out, you might not want cluttered countertops.

So, how can you create a clean kitchen aesthetic? We have a couple of ideas to help your kitchen feel spacious and clutter-free. How? Auxiliary kitchen spaces. 

What is a Butler’s Pantry and When Does It Work?

Royal Blue Butler's Pantry

Dating back to the time of (you guessed it) butlers, butler’s pantry is the fancier term for a walk-through pantry. Ideal for catering, this classic use of space between the dining room and the kitchen keeps the mess out of view for guests who’ve come to be entertained. It can house fine dish and glassware, bar supplies, and serve as an additional preparation area. 

A butler’s pantry works when there’s a separation between the kitchen and dining room, and if the layout is conducive to this type of crossover. Looking for butler pantry ideas? We love this deep royal blue one we designed. Clean and bold, it provides additional (and functional) space with a stunning look. 

These days, the butler’s pantry design is utilized less, as more people opt for an open concept kitchen and dining room.
Let’s take a look at other auxiliary kitchen space options that provide functionality and charm. (Fair warning: the names are not as fun!) 

Auxiliary Kitchen Spaces and Why You Want Them

Beyond a butler’s pantry, there are other functional pantry options to house whatever could clutter up your kitchen counters (including coffee makers!). This allows the kitchen to be sparse, giving the “head chef” a bit of extra elbow room. We separate those pantries into three categories:

  • Cabinet pantry – these taller cabinets are a dedicated, easily-accessible pantry inside your kitchen. We love utilizing larders (especially with pocket doors) for a sleek and functional addition.
  • Reach in pantry – in-between a cabinet and a walk-in, this option provides a fair amount of additional space in the kitchen.  
  • Walk-in pantry – as the name would suggest, this is a bigger space (akin to a walk-in closet) right off the kitchen. 

All of these options can be made highly functional with thoughtful pantry shelving and can mirror your kitchen’s aesthetic. 

Bluestem’s Kitchen Designs & Favorite Auxiliary Space Ideas

Before Picture
After Picture!


One of our other favorite auxiliary kitchen spaces: this coffee bar! By utilizing the space under the stair landing, there’s now a nook for this household’s morning brew. Not only is it functional, but by moving those appliances off of the countertops, there’s more room in the kitchen! 



Another one of our recent favorites actually came from a reimagined laundry room. With the washing machine and dryer moved, we created a walk-in pantry, complete with space for microwave, sink, and ice maker. With a loose pocket door, it’s easily accessible, and gives the kitchen a beautifully clean and minimalist vibe.

Bluestem Can Help

Whether you’re looking for a kitchen remodel or an auxiliary kitchen space, Bluestem is here to help make your dreams become a reality. Contact us with your questions, ideas, and concepts and let’s see if our partnership can bring a whole new dimension to your kitchen living. 

roll out pantry shelves.   extra storage space.