How to Choose the Best Kitchen Sink For You

Whether you’re looking to upgrade your kitchen appliances or are designing a brand-new kitchen of your dreams, picking out the right kitchen sink can be a bit difficult if you don’t know what your options are.

We have compiled a list of the different types of styles and materials of kitchen sinks. Each type has various functions for various kitchen layouts. We have outlined the pros and cons for you to help you narrow down the sink that will best fit your needs.

 

Sink Styles

stainless steel Undermounted and double-bowl sink installed in a kitchen.

stainless steel Undermounted and double-bowl sink installed in a kitchen.

Undermount Sinks

An undermount sink is installed underneath the counter. This makes a seamless, clean look from the countertop to the sink. These sinks make for the easiest clean ups; you can wipe debris and leftover food straight into the sink without it catching on the outer lip of the sink. One thing to note when looking at undermount sinks is that they work best with stainless steel, as cast iron, fireclay, and granite sinks are typically too heavy to be mounted underneath.

apron sink, in either cast iron or fireclay, installed in a kitchen.

apron sink, in either cast iron or fireclay, installed in a kitchen.

 Apron Sinks

If you’re trying to achieve the perfect farmhouse kitchen look, an apron sink will help you do just that. With farmhouse styled kitchens gaining more and more popularity, these sinks are being installed in more kitchens. Not only are they easy to clean due to their nonporous material, but they have a very deep basin that’s perfect for piling dishes into. Their one downfall is being harder to install, but the look at the end is definitely worth it.

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Top Mount Sinks

Top mount kitchen sinks, or drop-in sinks, drop into a hole in the counter. This creates a lip or a rim around the sink on top of the counter. Being one of the easiest to install, you can use virtually any type of material for top mounted sinks. One thing to consider is the possibility of grime and food building up at the lip when wiping the counters clean.

 

Single Bowl

Single bowl sinks are exactly how they sound – they have a single bowl. These can be large and deep, or smaller and shallow. These work great for smaller kitchen types; however, they are not great for multitasking between cleaning and cooking since there is no separation between rinsed dishes and dishes that are still covered in food. There is a major plus, however, to single bowl sinks. You can lay pots and pans flat at the bottom of the sinks without worrying about debris or water splashing about.

 

Stainless steel, double bowl sink undermounted in a kitchen.

Stainless steel, double bowl sink undermounted in a kitchen.

Double Bowl  

Like a single bowl sink, the name of a double bowl sink essentially gives away what it is. This is a sink with 2 separate bowls. They come in a wide array of configurations: two equal sized bowls with the same depth, two equal sized bowls with different depths, unequal sized bowls, etc. The right setup for you depends heavily on your cooking and cleaning habits.

 

Sink Finishes

 

Strainless steel double bowl sink. Depicting a bit shallower bowls.

Strainless steel double bowl sink. Depicting a bit shallower bowls.

Stainless Steel Sinks

Stainless steel sinks are the lightest and easiest to install, making them the most popular. One thing to consider when purchasing a stainless-steel sink is the gauge of stainless steel it is made out of. The ticker the gauge, the heavier and cheaper it is going to be. That makes it more durable, but a bit harder to install. Stainless steel sinks can dent and scratch a bit easier than other materials, but they are heat and stain resistant.

Cast iron, double bowl sink that is undermounted in a kitchen.

Cast iron, double bowl sink that is undermounted in a kitchen.

 

Cast Iron Sinks

Cast iron sinks are usually coated in a glossy enamel or porcelain finish, giving it a beautiful appeal to customers wanting a vintage look.  It is an extremely tough surface that is stain, scratch and fade resistant, making it the 2nd most durable of sink finishes. They work best top-mounted and are typically easy to keep clean.

 

Fireclay Sinks 

Fireclay sinks are made by molding and fusing ceramic clay at a very high temperature. Like cast iron sinks, fireclay sinks are also coated in a shiny porcelain enamel. In fact, they are almost identical to cast iron sinks, with the exceptions of being more expensive and a bit more durable. Unlike the cast iron, you can use abrasive cleaners on fireclay without ruining it.

 

granite composite, top-mounted sink with matching faucet.

granite composite, top-mounted sink with matching faucet.

Granite Composite Sinks

To make a composite sink, there must be a mixture of crushed granite or quartz and a resin filler (glue). Composite sinks have a very similar finish to actual granite, without the durability issues of that material. These dense sinks provide a modern and cutting-edge aesthetic to kitchens. They tend to be expensive due to their heaviness, denseness, and durability.

  

Before settling in on a sink design and finish, consider your kitchen’s layout and counterspace, your budget, and your cooking habits. With such a wide variety of finishes and styles, you should be able to find a sink that best suits you and your needs.