A sustainable kitchen design is concerned with the appliances chosen and the materials employed. Water-saving dishwashers, energy-efficient refrigerators as well as counter tops made from recycled materials, especially those free from urea-formaldehyde—a noxious chemical often found in household wood surfaces—are all examples of what might be found in a sustainable kitchen.

Beyond the details, a sustainable kitchen is one which simply uses less to get more. Picture windows, skylights, and reflective surfaces may all reduce to the need for electrical lighting during the day.