The kitchen sink is a busy place—and essential to both prep work and cleanup duties. It's important to choose a sink that's well suited to your daily needs and complements your working style. A single-bowl model can be a versatile and convenient option for the kitchen work zone. Just like double-bowl models, these sinks are available in a range of materials, and in drop-in, undermount, and apron-front configurations to work with various countertop surfaces and complement different kitchen styles. Take a look at the advantages and disadvantages of a single-bowl kitchen sink to determine if it's the right choice for your kitchen.
Single-bowl sinks can work well in any size of kitchen, but they're especially useful in small kitchens with limited counter space. A large, double- or triple-bowl model may overwhelm a small room, whereas a single-bowl model, which is typically narrower than multiple-bowl options, will complement the room's scale. Single-bowl sinks can make it somewhat harder to multitask in the kitchen, but if you are mainly using the kitchen sink to rinse dishes before putting them into the dishwasher, a single-bowl sink may be all you need. Plus, they can make washing large items easier. "An extra-large single-bowl sink is so much more flexible than a double bowl," says Richard Landon, a certified master kitchen and bath designer in Bellevue, Washington. "Not only can you lay a cookie sheet or turkey pan entirely flat in the bottom for soaking or cleaning, you can put a dishpan in it and use it as a double-sink when you want that arrangement."
If you're thinking about purchasing a single-bowl kitchen sink, keep in mind that they can make it a little more challenging to work on separate tasks simultaneously. If you often clean up as you are preparing food, for example, or if you wash and rinse dishes at the sink, a double-bowl sink can make these tasks easier. However, there are ways to get around these drawbacks, if you like the single, wide bowl for cleanup. If space and budget are limited, you can simply set a dish drainer in one side of the single bowl to add versatility. Or, if you have enough space you may want to opt for a single-bowl sink in the cleanup zone along the perimeter and install an additional prep sink in the island work zone.