Bird’s-eye view of full cups of coffee, a coffee maker and a coffee grinder near coffee beans

COFFEE BAR IDEAS: HOW TO SET UP A COFFEE STATION

A morning coffee ritual can be a comforting staple of any day-to-day routine. With an at-home coffee bar you can elevate your experience by designating a space for your favorite brewing tools and supplies. Whether you’re working with a small space to create a coffee bar counter or designing an elaborate home café, a coffee station is well within reach. Keep reading to learn more about how to make a coffee bar.

Coffee-making appliances from KitchenAid brand on counter with scones Coffee-making appliances from KitchenAid brand on counter with scones

WHAT IS A COFFEE BAR?

A coffee bar brings the café to the comfort of your home. It creates a designated area for your coffee-making tools, mugs, add-ins and supplies that can enhance your morning coffee ritual and give you space to immerse yourself in the art of crafting decadent drinks or grab-and-go favorites.

HOW TO MAKE A COFFEE BAR AT HOME

The six simple steps below can help transform your at-home coffee bar from an idea to a reality. You’ll start by choosing your space and considering which tools can help you make the most of your coffee station at home. Then, allow your coffee crafting process to inspire your setup, arrange your supplies and make it your own with decor that complements your home’s aesthetic.

SUPPLIES
  • Ground or whole coffee beans

  • Filters 

  • Measuring scoop

  • Spoons

  • Stir sticks

  • Add-ins (creamer, sugar bowl, syrups, etc.)

  • Mugs

TOOLS
  • Designated space (countertop, rolling cart, etc.)

  • Coffee grinder (burr, blade or manual)

  • Coffee maker, espresso maker or pour over cone

  • Milk frother or steamer

  • Scale

  • Kettle

Coffee maker on counter with mugs full of coffee and halved grapefruit pieces Coffee maker on counter with mugs full of coffee and halved grapefruit pieces

STEP 1: CHOOSE YOUR SPACE

Creating a DIY coffee bar doesn’t require a large surface area. Depending on the tools and supplies you’re hoping to stock, you can set up on small spaces like a repurposed end table, countertop corner, bar cart or hutch. 

Whatever surface you choose, be sure to consider proximity to a water source and make sure appliance cords can easily reach to an open outlet. You can make the most out of a small surface by expanding your coffee bar vertically with shelving and hooks, just make sure your coffee maker and other appliances have enough clearance. 

Person pouring a pitcher of coffee into a mug Person pouring a pitcher of coffee into a mug

STEP 2: FIND THE RIGHT TOOLS

Crafting your perfect americano, cappuccino or black coffee means using the right set of tools in the right order. Consider the following process of creating decadent drinks when deciding which tools will act as the staples of your coffee bar.

First, you’ll prepare for brewing by grinding premium beans into your desired consistency using a manual, blade or burr coffee grinder like these models from KitchenAid brand. Then, you’ll accurately measure grinds using a digital kitchen scale or measuring scoop. Next, you’ll prepare your brewing method tool—like a KitchenAid® pour over cone, drip coffee maker or espresso machine—with the appropriate filter and coffee grounds.

Once brewing is complete, you might create a foamy cappuccino, latté or macchiato using a handheld milk frother wand or—if brewing with a KitchenAid® espresso machine—an automatic milk frother attachment.

Full cold brew coffee maker near bowl of sugar cubes Full cold brew coffee maker near bowl of sugar cubes

STEP 3: CONSIDER YOUR PROCESS

Before you start setting up, think through each step you take when preparing different types of coffee so you can create a seamless assembly line. If you grind your own premium roasts, for example, you may consider arranging coffee beans, the grinder and your scale or scoop together, while post-brew supplies like mugs, creamer, sugar and stir sticks can occupy a separate section of your coffee bar.

STEP 4: SET UP EQUIPMENT

Start by placing large or small appliances like coffee makers, espresso machines or coffee grinders before adding smaller, non-electric tools and supplies. This way you can make sure all cords are out of the way and appliances have enough clearance before hanging hooks for mugs or shelving for extras.

Silver KitchenAid® Semi-Automatic Espresso Machine on counter with coffee beans and croissants Silver KitchenAid® Semi-Automatic Espresso Machine on counter with coffee beans and croissants

STEP 5: TEST YOUR ROUTINE

Whip up a smooth cup of coffee, bold shot of espresso or silky latté to test the placement of your tools and supplies. If you find yourself maneuvering at awkward angles or reaching for your favorite caramel vanilla syrup that isn’t there, rearrange or add to your coffee bar for next time. 

STEP 6: MAKE IT YOUR OWN

Add finishing touches that help create the functionality and aesthetic you like most. Keep your coffee bar looking and feeling organized with labels or canisters to hold supplies, or add artwork and decor that complements your home’s aesthetic so each visit to your coffee bar feels comfortable and inviting.

SHOP KITCHENAID® COFFEE MAKERS AND EQUIPMENT

Person pouring milk into cup of cold brew coffee Person pouring milk into cup of cold brew coffee

WHERE SHOULD A COFFEE BAR BE PLACED?

You can get creative with the placement of your coffee bar, but a few considerations may help narrow down your options. First, make sure you have access to an outlet and consider your proximity to a water and cream or milk supply. If you can’t find space in the kitchen, consider adjacent common areas like your dining room or the entrance to a sitting room for easy access when hosting guests.

WHAT CAN YOU USE AS A COFFEE STATION?

You can create a functional coffee station using a variety of surfaces. Take advantage of empty countertop space and utilize decorative trays, trivets or stands to keep supplies organized. You can also repurpose a side table, end table, night stand, bar cart or hutch. Whichever you choose, make sure there’s sufficient room for your coffee maker, espresso machine or coffee grinder on a flat and stable surface. Then, create a space for other tools and supplies using overhead shelving, stands or hooks as necessary. 

EXPLORE KITCHENAID® COFFEE COLLECTION

Coffee products from KitchenAid brand are designed with brew enthusiasts in mind. Whether your morning coffee routine is more hands-off or immersive, find the right coffee maker, grinder, espresso machine or accessory to help you create an exceptional cup of coffee every time. 

DISCOVER MORE COFFEE POSSIBILITIES WITH KITCHENAID BRAND