Kitchen Ceiling Height – Explained!

Although kitchen ceiling height cabinets have benefits, they are not always the best option. Kitchen cabinets that reach the ceiling might be problematic for certain individuals. People frequently prefer high cabinets because they need more space, which is one of the key reasons. Your kitchen is probably where you keep a lot of items. So, what is the kitchen ceiling height?

How tall your kitchen cabinets should depend on how high your ceiling is. It will thus affect the size of the cabinets you want to utilize. Since 8 feet is often the common ceiling height, many stock cabinets have been made to fit this height. While some of the cabinets created to fit these areas will have trim and only have one wall cabinet reach the ceiling, other cabinetry will have trim but not do so. If the home includes crown molding, it will wrap around the kitchen and be positioned below the cabinetry and trim.

Kitchen Ceiling Height

For some homeowners, having enough storage in the kitchen can be a problem. Using tall kitchen cabinets is one way to increase storage. These cabinets extend to the ceiling. 

For many years, 8 feet tall (96″) was the norm; more recently, new residences have ceiling heights of 9 feet (108″) or more. It’s not complicated to choose the proper height for top cabinets.

To reach the ceiling, you must determine the ideal cabinet size because they come in common sizes. Most kitchens have 8 to 9-foot ceilings. To get the desired height, you can probably use wall cabinets that are 42 inches tall with optional 12-inch additions on top. Crown molding can be used to close any gaps.

Kitchens with ceilings higher than 10 feet pose a problem so designers can choose a few solutions. The addition of a small cabinet on top of the upper cabinet is one of the most popular solutions for kitchens with ceilings between 11 and 13 feet.

In kitchens with higher ceilings, an alternative method is to simply stop the cabinets short of the ceiling and cover them with thick crown molding. For practical reasons, the range chimney extends to the ceiling, but it also does so to contrast the height of the upper cabinets.

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Factors That Affect Your Kitchen Ceiling Height 

However, the choice is more difficult than you might imagine. Your choice is influenced by a number of things, including:

  • Design inclinations
  • Cost of the ceiling
  • Details of the ceiling

Measure your ceiling before you begin to make any decisions. As you conduct your research to make your decision, note the numbers so you can refer to them later.

Design Preference

If you don’t like the visual appearance (or functionality) of wall cabinetry reaching the ceiling, start by asking yourself this straightforward question: Do cabinets that reach the ceiling appeal to you because of their seamless, continuous appearance? And how appealing are bigger cabinets?

Some individuals adore the look of a solid block of wall cabinets that run continuously without any space above them. Others prefer continuous cabinets because they provide more storage space and do away with the space that would otherwise collect dust.

Be aware that the storage shelves near the ceiling are not very accessible before assuming this additional storage space is a great feature. Most people store seasonal items or rarely used dishes and accessories on the highest shelves. One option is to equip your kitchen with a rolling library ladder, which can improve access to high shelves and serve as a decorative design element.

Kitchen Ceiling Height

If your kitchen has a ceiling between 8 feet (96 inches) and 9 feet (108 inches) high, you have a few alternatives if you want the appearance of cabinetry that reaches the ceiling.

You can buy cabinets that properly fit the area or install two rows of wall cabinets that take up the entire vertical space to fill the space with cabinets. According to a general rule of thumb, wall cabinets should be installed so that the bottom edge is 54 inches above the ground. This leaves 42 inches of space for wall cabinets in a room with an 8-foot-tall ceiling and 54 inches in a room with a 9-foot-tall ceiling.

Wall cabinets are available from many stock cabinetry manufacturers in heights of 12, 15, 18, 24, 30, 32, 36, and 42 inches. 42-inch-tall wall cabinets will fit perfectly if you want cabinets that reach the ceiling and have 8-foot-tall ceilings.

 If your ceilings are nine feet tall, you may decide to use the 54 inches of wall space by installing one row of 36-inch-tall cabinets, followed by a row of 18-inch cabinets. A 42-inch-long row of 12-inch cabinets would be an alternative. Crown moldings or other decorative trim work can typically be used to easily close any small gaps that may exist above the wall cabinets.

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A custom cabinetry specialist can create cabinets to fit any space, even if you have unusually high ceilings. Alternatively, you might cover the area above a single row of ordinary cabinets with false panels that provide the illusion of cabinets extending to the ceiling but lacking their functionality or expense.

It’s better to avoid attempting to run cabinets all the way up if you have the unique scenario of ceilings higher than 10 feet, as is occasionally the case in loft condos. Installing such a large number of cabinets is neither practicable nor appealing.


If you decide to install to-the-ceiling wall cabinets, you should be aware that your remodeling expenses may increase significantly. Adding a second row of cabinets or purchasing extra-tall cabinets can significantly boost your costs since the cabinetry is already the most expensive part of a kitchen redesign.

False cabinet panels reaching the ceiling are likely your best alternative if you are set on the style, but the expense seems out of reach. The ceiling can also be extended downward by building and finishing soffits that lower the ceiling height above the cabinets to meet the tops of the cabinets.

Ceiling Details

The subject of cabinet heights can become even more muddled due to beams and other architectural features. It is typically best to keep the tops of the cabinets well below the ceiling when there are ceiling beams present, whether they provide real structural support or are merely decorative (which is frequently the case). If you want full-rise cabinets, it would be best to ask the carpenters to remove any decorative beams because they will clash awkwardly with the cabinets.

Things can become more complicated with other architectural features. When you extend wall cabinets to the ceiling, for instance, the symmetrical appearance of a coffered ceiling is severely compromised. When the cabinets are extended fully to the ceiling, the ability to use indirect uplighting through light fixtures mounted on the tops of the cabinets is lost.

Additionally, installing full-rise wall cabinets in a kitchen with elaborate built-up crown moldings will likely require removing those moldings. Reattaching them to the cabinets might not be possible once they have been removed. Before proceeding, you should consider whether the full-rise cabinets or the decorative moldings offer a more eye-catching feature.

There is only personal preference regarding cabinet heights; there is no right or wrong. Making the right choice only requires careful consideration of your available space, storage needs, and desired aesthetic.

What Are The Advantages Of Ceiling Height Kitchen Cabinets?

Choosing ceiling height cabinets has a number of advantages and benefits. These benefits consist of:

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An increase in storage space is possible thanks to kitchen cabinets that reach the ceiling. This extra storage, typically between one and two feet high, is very useful. As you can store so much more, this can be incredibly useful for kitchens with little storage or smaller kitchen spaces.

Flexible Kitchen Design: For a more adaptable overall kitchen design, use high cabinets that reach the ceiling. This is because you could replace a row of under-counter cabinets with a breakfast bar thanks to the extra storage, or you could even use a kitchen island in place of lower cabinets. 

This flexibility enables you to install a new, more useful kitchen or make useful modifications to your current one.

When Not To Use Kitchen Ceiling Height Cabinets

Your preference for ceiling-height cabinets should be the deciding factor in your choice. Cabinets extend to the ceiling instead of stopping before appearing differently. Ceiling-height cabinets might not be the best option if you feel like they look too crowded or you prefer the way they look with some space above.

Some houses also have unusually large ceilings. For instance, the kitchen may have a high ceiling on one side that slopes downward. In these situations, you shouldn’t try to run your cabinets to the ceiling. You must ensure that your cabinets are unique to your room, which can cost significantly more. Additionally, they might have an odd appearance, and installing them might require more work.

You might also come up with a middle-of-the-road response. Your cabinets don’t have to extend to the ceiling, for example, if your kitchen has a beam that goes around the space directly below the ceiling. Instead, they can stop right in front of the beam.

What Should I Do If I Have Extra Space Between My Cabinets And Ceiling?

The distance from the top of the cabinets to the ceiling may end up being a few inches or a few feet. Here are some suggestions for enhancing this area:

  • Hidden behind the crown molding, add lighting above your cabinets.
  • To give your ceiling above your cabinets a rustic appearance, add decorative wood beams.
  • Around the top of your ceiling, above your cabinets, you can add a thicker crown molding.
  • You could include flowers or accessories like vases or pottery.

The layout of your cabinetry and your options for 9′ ceilings will be designed with the assistance of your designer and your kitchen cabinet partner.

Conclusion On Kitchen Ceiling Height 

Your space, budget, and preferences are the three things to consider before installing kitchen cabinets to the ceiling. Last but not least, consider what feels the most comfortable. While some people prefer to display decorative items in the space between their wall cabinets and ceiling, others prefer to have no space between them.