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Too Many Outlets?  Alternatives for Electrical Outlets in Your Kitchen

Too Many Outlets? Alternatives for Electrical Outlets in Your Kitchen

Those unsightly electrical outlets seem to be everywhere.  And, while they are a necessary evil in our super-powered society, they are not the prettiest item in the world – especially when they’re scattered throughout our beautifully-custom-tiled kitchen backsplash.  Thankfully, there are ways to keep those outlets out of sight.

Building codes dictate how many outlets must be installed in a home, and how far from one another they must be placed.  That code leaves our kitchen backsplash area littered with the things.  And, while they are handy for plugging in the coffee pot, toaster, mixer and other household gadgets, they aren’t fashion statements, to be sure.  If you are building a new home, or planning a major kitchen remodeling project, you do have other options for your kitchen electrical outlet needs.  Take a peek at a few of the items on the market today…

Outlets galore!

To keep outlets out of sight in the kitchen, you have two options:  either install them into the countertop or install them higher, underneath the upper cabinets.  The Pop-Up Kitchen Grommet from Mockett allows you to keep your outlets hidden until they are needed.  While this is a nice, clean look, it could be a headache when spills inevitably happen, and it may be difficult to clean around the top cap, so be sure to take that into consideration before installing.  Also, be aware that the installation will mean you lose a bit of space in the cabinet below, since the piece needs to pop down into the drawer or cabinet.

pop-up power grommet

Mockett also offers a lower-profile option in this tilt-up version.  This one is not as water-tight as the pop-up option, so be aware that it likely cannot be located in wet areas.  It features USB hook-ups, though, so it could be a great option for a home office, too!

tilt power outlet

A similar product from Schulte Electro Systems offers both countertop installation and installation from above.  This item will also take away a bit of your cabinet space, due to the nature of the product.  Also, keep in mind that you will likely want to unplug your appliances when they are not in use.  Otherwise, you will have cords running up to the plugs all the time, and that would be unsightly.

pop-up outlet

Another option is to install a basic power strip under the upper cabinets.  It is virtually undetectable when installed in a color similar to the cabinets.  But, again, you will have the problem of cords running up your wall if you like to leave things plugged in all the time.  This was done in this cottage-style kitchen, leaving a pristine marble slab backsplash:


kitchen backsplash without outlets

Photo courtesy Landsted

That same power strip can be used under the countertop of a kitchen island to allow for handy access to electrical outlets.  This leaves power cords dangling over the edge of the countertop, however, which could pose a safety hazard.  Still, it’s a great option for hiding the electrical outlets while providing easy access to them.  This one from Task Lighting is especially nice:

angle power strip

Another kitchen island option is the Sillite product.  This super-tiny outlet is nearly undetectable, but supplies power where you need it.  They can also be installed in window sills, fireplace mantles and other tiny places – how cool is that?

 Sillites outlet

Whatever product you choose, be sure to match the color of the outlet, switches and covers to the surface behind it to best camouflage them.  So, if your cabinet wood or kitchen backsplash is dark, you want to select a deeper color for your outlets and switches – maybe dark brown or even black in some cases.  Lighter tile and wood tones may call for white, ivory or light gray.  The kitchen island below utilizes a standard black outlet on the side of the island – cut right into the granite.  Can you see it?

Kitchen island outlets

Photo courtesy Landsted

Before you install any type of outlet in your kitchen, be sure to consult with your local building codes and a professional electrician to be sure you do everything legally and safely.

Electrical outlets and switches are a necessary part of our lives, and nowhere are they easier to spot than in the kitchen.  With the options shown here, you should be able to find a solution that works well for your lifestyle and the look of your home.

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5 Responses to Too Many Outlets? Alternatives for Electrical Outlets in Your Kitchen

  1. […] a month ago, I wrote an article about different ways you can camouflage the various electrical outlets and switches that need to be installed in your kitchen bac….  Since then, I found another couple of products that I thought I’d share with […]

  2. j mellen says:

    need outlet for kitchen counter



  4. diane carelli says:

    I am interested in buying the pop up hidden outlet on the counter, can I purchase it from you?
    thank Diane Carelli

    • Teri says:

      Hello! I don’t actually sell them, but you may check with your local cabinetmaker or kitchen company and they should be able to source it for you. Good luck with your project!

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