HOME > Chowhound > Cookware >
Are you making a specialty food? Get great advice
TELL US

Sell me on a single-bowl sink

d
dmd_kc Jul 8, 2009 10:01 AM

I'm getting down to actually choosing all the components for my kitchen makeover. Several people have tried to steer me to getting one big, single-bowl sink instead of the equal two-bowl I'd been planning.

So far, the only argument in its favor I can understand is that you can get the largest pans inside it to clean. That makes sense.

But what the heck do you do when you want to wash a large batch of dishes and pans by hand? I've always kept one bowl with shallow soapy water, and another to rinse in. That'd be impossible in a single-bowl sink.

What am I missing? Stainless steel is the only material I'll consider, BTW.

  1. c
    chuckl Jul 8, 2009 10:05 AM

    what you're missing, in my opinion, is a dishwasher. When we remodeled we went with a relatively deep single stainless sink (franke). Just rinse off the dishes and put them in them in the dishwasher. We got a double from f/p and it's working out pretty well so far

    1 Reply
    1. re: chuckl
      d
      dmd_kc Jul 8, 2009 11:14 AM

      Oh, I should have mentioned that I WILL have a dishwasher. But I hand-wash several items religiously. I never put plastic in the dishwasher, for example, and will sometimes amass quite a batch to do at once.

    2. Gio Jul 8, 2009 10:26 AM

      With a single good sized sink in order to wash tableware that must not go into the dishwasher I use a wash tub set into the sink with the soapy water and rinse as I go in the open side. Space limitation was a factor whan we installed a new counter and sink.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Gio
        c oliver Jul 8, 2009 12:16 PM

        I do what you do, Gio, and I always have one of those little rubber-y mats in the sink to protect fragiles - it also protects the sink. I don't like a second sink for rinsing as eventually that water is going to be less than pristine and scalding hot. I will always have this type of sink. Oh, and some are deeper than others so check that out also. I got as deep as seemed reasonable. Not as deep as a utility sink but 8+", I believe. I find NO downside to it and being able to roasting pans and baking sheets flat in the water to soak is great.

        1. re: Gio
          q
          Querencia Jan 23, 2011 07:45 AM

          Gio, sixty years ago when my family lived in South America we had a little under-roof outdoor work area behind the kitchen that had a great big washtub where a lady came every week to do our laundry by hand. When she wasn't there we used that sink for soaking and scrubbing pots and pans. Since then I have never, not for a single day, stopped missing that big scrubbing sink.

        2. j
          jeffreyem Jul 8, 2009 11:48 AM

          I added one in my recent remodel and will NEVER have anything but a large single bowl again. It actually makes hand washing a pleasure. I hand wash all my pots an pans and couldn't stand doing it in my old 60/40 bowl, no space. Mine is stainless.

          4 Replies
          1. re: jeffreyem
            d
            dmd_kc Jul 8, 2009 12:06 PM

            jeffreyem, where do you rinse them, then? Do you just use the sprayer and let it fall back into the dishwater?

            1. re: dmd_kc
              j
              jeffreyem Jul 8, 2009 01:39 PM

              Sprayer and the faucet I don't keep any water in the sink, I have a drying rack on the counter, I actually prefer hand washing to the dishwasher (which is right next to the sink.)

            2. re: jeffreyem
              free sample addict aka Tracy L Aug 12, 2009 01:43 PM

              I always prefer hand washing in a single bowl sink. I can be a Klutz so the two bowl sinks never worked for me because I would inevitably not have enough room and break something when I ran into the sides of the sink. it's also good for washing a puppy. The down side of a single bowl is that if you don't wash or load the dishes right away it becomes a storage area for dirty dishes.

              1. re: free sample addict aka Tracy L
                g
                gordeaux Aug 13, 2009 12:02 PM

                I see the "storage area" as upside, not downside.

            3. alanbarnes Jul 8, 2009 12:06 PM

              I've had both, and very much prefer double-bowl sinks. That probably has to do as much with my cooking / cleaning style as anything else. I like to put dirty stuff in one side and have the other side available for use. So, for example, if you need to soak a sauce pot for a while before scrubbing it out, it's out of the way while you're prepping the salad. Also, if you have a bunch of dishes to hand-wash, you can have one side full of hot soapy water and the other side available for rinsing.

              My inclination is to go the opposite direction. For our upcoming kitchen remodel, I've picked out a three-bowl sink, with a small, shallow middle bowl that houses the disposal.

              8 Replies
              1. re: alanbarnes
                Scrapironchef Jul 8, 2009 03:01 PM

                I have to side with the two bowl contingent. I Installed a two bowl that had one side large enough to take a half sheet pan flat and a smaller side with the disposal mounted in it. My favorite sink ever, the large side was extra deep and really worked well for me.

                I'm now living with a single pot sink undermunted to a tile counter, changing it would start a series of domino like fixes that would result in a whole new kitchen. Not in my budget right now.

                1. re: Scrapironchef
                  danna Aug 21, 2009 11:34 AM

                  I have never understood why people put the disposal on the smaller side. When you are washing your half sheet pan, what happens to the bits of stuck on food? Wouldn't it be better if they could just be disposed off directly down the drain of the sink you are washing it in?

                  1. re: danna
                    d
                    DGresh Aug 21, 2009 12:14 PM

                    when we bought our house it had the disposal in the small side. We redid our kitchen and the question came up. The contractor said "most people put it in the small side". I thought about it, and instead put it in the big side. I tend to use the big side for soaking dirty dishes and whatever, and the small side to rinse or peel veggies. I put the scraps in the compost, and they're relatively clean, so I just scoop them out with my hands. The icky stuff from the soaking pots goes down the disposal. Makes sense to me.

                    1. re: danna
                      Scrapironchef Oct 18, 2009 09:44 PM

                      The basket strainer in the large side grabs anything too large to go directly down the drain. Putting the disposer in the large side takes it out of action whenever you are washing/soaking something.

                      It's easy to scrape and rinse into the small side, if you do it into the large side you end up having to scrape and inse out the whole sink when you are done.

                      1. re: Scrapironchef
                        d
                        DGresh Oct 19, 2009 03:53 AM

                        kind of depends on how much you *want* to go down the disposal. With septic, you're supposed to minimize that, hence my desire to only send the really gross stuff from soaking down the disposal. I do peel into the small side, then scoop it out into the compost.

                      2. re: danna
                        scubadoo97 Jun 13, 2010 01:22 PM

                        Me nether. To me the disposal should be on the large bowl. That's where I put mine since that's the side that most washing occurs, but I see it the other way more often.

                    2. re: alanbarnes
                      Jay F Jan 23, 2011 06:42 AM

                      >>>>I've had both, and very much prefer double-bowl sinks. That probably has to do as much with my cooking / cleaning style as anything else. I like to put dirty stuff in one side and have the other side available for use. <<<<
                      How do you soak a 12" skillet (anything with a handle, really)?

                      1. re: Jay F
                        alanbarnes Jan 23, 2011 09:27 AM

                        My sink's probably 60/40, and the big side is large enough to soak most of the stuff I have. There are exceptions; they have to soak on the counter. Suboptimal, but it happens so infrequently that it just isn't that much of an issue.

                    3. legourmettv Jul 8, 2009 12:24 PM

                      We have a double sink, but it's split 60-40 or 70-30. So you end up with a larger main sink and the extra sink for rinsing / draining.

                      Previous kitchen had a single sink, and I went a little snakey - even with a dishwasher.

                      G.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: legourmettv
                        grnidkjun Jul 8, 2009 01:17 PM

                        I have this type of split sink as well. Love it.. it has the larger side where I can fit the insert out of my 7qt KitchenAid slowcooker easily to wash.. and the smaller side for rinsing other items or whatever.

                      2. g
                        gordeaux Jul 8, 2009 01:55 PM

                        I just re did my entire kitchen and when faced with the qq of the sink, I was the oppopsite. I had no idea in the world why anyone would want to split a sink. For the items I don't do in the dishwasher, I have the little plastic tub. I went 33 inch stainless. When you have a split sink, you lose space in your sink. There's an entire wall between the two sink sides, AND that little wall is x wide which is more lost space. I can fit any of my pots/pans/ cookie sheets, lasagna pans flat in my sink and have room to spare. If I need to split it for whatever reason, I pull out the tub. I usually have the tub going for soaking dishes before they go into the dw - we only run it every other day. I almost considered getting one large side and one tiny side for rinsing veggies and thawing, but, in the end, I can do all of that in my one big sink since there is so much room. I honestly have no idea why a sep side would be needed. IMO, it limits you whereas a non split sink can do everything that a split sink can do AND more.

                        If you are going with an undermount, make sure your coutertop guy cuts it so the sink's edges are recessed. If they do not, that's a nice little shelf for crumbs and grit to hang out on for years.

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: gordeaux
                          b
                          Bite Me Jun 7, 2010 12:27 PM

                          Gordeaux, Can you please describe what you mean by "recessed"? We are about to install a single farmsink with apron, undermount. It will be my first single, non-split sink and I am verrrrrrrry excited about it.

                          1. re: Bite Me
                            g
                            gordeaux Jun 13, 2010 08:55 AM

                            The edges of the sink being recessed behind the edge of the granite.. So the granite overlaps the edges of the sink. If the sink's edges stick out from the granite if it is an undermount, then you have a nice shelf for crud to gather on

                            1. re: gordeaux
                              c
                              Cimorene Jun 30, 2010 11:34 PM

                              'cept the edge is nice to put a chopping board on when wanting to cut over the sink :)

                        2. scubadoo97 Jul 8, 2009 01:58 PM

                          Even though we have a 70/30 ratio double. I wanted a single but my wife could not get past the loss of the side bowl. I chose a double with the largest bowl to accommodate an average roaster. The large side has the disposal

                          So what do I do with the small bowl? Not much! I have floated 6 qt stock pots in there to cool them down. For the most part it doesn't get used even if I'm washing pots or dishes by hand. Yes we do have a dishwasher.

                          If it wasn't a joint decision I would have one large bowl sink. You got to pick your battles

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: scubadoo97
                            g
                            gordeaux Jul 9, 2009 07:38 AM

                            Lol -
                            Since I do the cooking, most of the appliances in my kitchen redo were battles I would not concede to. I let the wife choose the dishwasher, the faucet, and the fridge (although the fridge HAD to be french door) The oven, cooktop, and hood were all mine. When it came to the sink, I just could not understand what a double could do that a single could not. I could definitely understand what a double could NOT do.

                          2. b
                            Buckethead Jul 8, 2009 02:21 PM

                            "But what the heck do you do when you want to wash a large batch of dishes and pans by hand? I've always kept one bowl with shallow soapy water, and another to rinse in. That'd be impossible in a single-bowl sink."

                            It's far from impossible, just use a plastic dish tub to rinse them. You can always keep a dish tub on hand for that, but you can't make a dual-bowl sink fit a sheet pan, or a giant stockpot.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: Buckethead
                              q
                              Querencia Jan 23, 2011 07:42 AM

                              Definitely. When I use my silver I keep a plastic dishpan of hot water and detergent ready in the sink and as I clear the table I put the silver directly in the water to wait until the guests have gone home---meanwhile I can quickly rinse off the dishes and stick them in the dishwasher. Later I do the silver by hand. I used to do the crystal by hand until I broke a glass by looking at it cross-eyed---it is actually safer in the top rack of the dishwasher.

                            2. legourmettv Jul 8, 2009 02:42 PM

                              Just like every other discussion here; it's split down the centre with each side presuming to know what you need.
                              In the end you have to decide on all the factors that will shape your decision: space, usage, budget, aesthetics.
                              How often do you hand wash?
                              When you hand wash do you want a plastic tub in the sink as a wash basin?
                              Do you bring veg in from the garden and need to rinse?

                              G.

                              1. r
                                rainey Jul 8, 2009 03:31 PM

                                I recently made this decision myself. I chose a huge farmhouse sink with a divider that creates a second portion that's only 11" wide. That's large enough for a small draining rack to fit inside.

                                If I had to choose between conventional one- and two-bowl sinks, I'd definitely go with the one-bowl.

                                As to how to wash, I use the largest vessel I'm washing at any given time to hold the soapy water. I wash each thing in turn and rinse them with a blast of clean water, finishing the one holding the water last, of course. This arrangement is much more water use efficient than filling a sink.

                                I use my dishwasher, naturally. But I still wash a considerable number of things by hand throughout the day.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: rainey
                                  leanneabe Jul 9, 2009 09:51 AM

                                  That's what I do! I usually have some sort of pot or mixing bowl that needs to be washed, so I rinse it out, fill it with soapy water, and use that to wash the other hand-washables. Then everything gets a rinse at the end as it goes onto the drying rack.

                                  When we remodeled our kitchen, one of my priorities was a single-bowl sink to make washing roasting pans and baking sheets much easier. It's probably 8.5" deep, 28" wide and it's perfect for what we need. I hated our double-bowl sink!

                                  We also went with a solid-surface undermount sink because I was having trouble finding a stainless steel sink that a) fit in our 30" cabinet and b) meet our budget constraints. I'm still amazed at how seamless it is from the counter to the sink.

                                2. tanuki soup Jul 8, 2009 03:49 PM

                                  I have a wide single-bowl sink, but it came with a removable steel tub (with its own drain plug) that fits in the sink and can be slid to the left or right as desired. Seems like the best of both worlds to me. I should mention that I live in Japan, but they must have sinks like this in the US too.

                                  1. alkapal Jul 8, 2009 05:53 PM

                                    i'd get a huge sink, with a divider. it'd be like two regular size sinks, but connected.
                                    the regular double sinks i've seen are too small to wash the pots i use a lot.

                                    10 Replies
                                    1. re: alkapal
                                      alanbarnes Jul 9, 2009 09:39 AM

                                      Is this what you're talking about?:

                                      http://www.us.kohler.com/onlinecatalo...

                                      I'd never heard of these before. Seems like they might be the best of both worlds.

                                      1. re: alanbarnes
                                        Scrapironchef Jul 9, 2009 11:12 AM

                                        This is the one I had - http://www.us.kohler.com/onlinecatalo...

                                        Worked great with a high arch faucet, took my biggest roaster as well as flat soaking half sheet pans.

                                        1. re: Scrapironchef
                                          d
                                          dmd_kc Jul 12, 2009 10:30 PM

                                          I'm realizing I must just have idiosyncrasies unique to myself. My mother-in-law has that sink. and she hates it -- as do I when I wash up there.

                                        2. re: alanbarnes
                                          c
                                          CrazyOne Jul 9, 2009 12:51 PM

                                          Ah, good! The Kohler Smart Divide (or similar) must have been what I had seen and found appealing recently. I think it might have been at my boss' house, can't remember where I saw. Anyway, that really made sense to me, a divided sink with a lower divider so that large items could still fit in the sink above the divider.

                                          I'm sure there are downsides to this design too just like the others, but that is the most appealing to me. I have a plain double stainless right now, same size both sides. I don't want to give up the double-ness, but I'd sometimes like a little more room in one side or the other.

                                          1. re: CrazyOne
                                            d
                                            DGresh Jul 13, 2009 05:50 AM

                                            I just redid my kitchen and put in the Smart Divide. I really like it. I'm kind of a messy cook and like to have the big part (with disposal) for soaking dirty dishes,and I use the small side for washing/peeling veggies into for example. While it may seem counterintuitive that we did not put the disposal where I pare veggies, we have septic and like to keep stuff put into it to a minimum. So I scoop out the parings into the compost and only use the disposal for the grungy stuff that comes out of dirty pots.

                                          2. re: alanbarnes
                                            alkapal Jul 10, 2009 05:14 AM

                                            alan, actually i hadn't seen the sink you link.

                                            1. re: alkapal
                                              alanbarnes Jul 10, 2009 09:42 AM

                                              So what kind of divider did you have in mind? I'm asking for purely selfish reasons, of course, given that a new sink is in my (hopefully near) future.

                                              1. re: alanbarnes
                                                alkapal Jul 10, 2009 02:35 PM

                                                well, alan, to be honest, it was a sink of my imagination, 'cause i haven't found it yet on any website. sorry... ;-(. but it's like a regular large single sink, but adjoining one just like it, thus, a humongo double sink!

                                                maybe an industrial kitchen sink?

                                            2. re: alanbarnes
                                              c
                                              CocoaNut Jul 10, 2009 07:05 AM

                                              At the moment, I'm dreaming more than planning, but the sink issue is a question for me also - reasons of style as well as function, the latter being what I always lean toward, at least in the kitchen.

                                              For me, this style would be the perfect answer to both worlds - of sorts. I understand the arguments for a single bowl, but since I don't use that many oversized cooking devices, it'd be overbuying for my needs. As is, the spray wand meets my needs with a little splashy, wipe-up afterwards.

                                              Giving up a double bowl would make me feel compelled to stop whatever I'm doing and immediately wash (or put in the d/w) every single item I use, which is really not always convenient or productive. I know it's a mind thing, but I don't even like filling a pot with water if there are dirty dishes beneath..... So having that divider would keep the dirty, at least in "spirit", separate from the clean.

                                              So to "al", thanks for mentioning this option and to the other "al', thanks for the link.

                                              1. re: alanbarnes
                                                Jay F Jan 23, 2011 06:45 AM

                                                That would work. There's just got to be room for handles.

                                            3. Sooeygun Jul 9, 2009 08:04 AM

                                              I don't have a choice as I rent, but if I could switch from one sink to a double, I would. I hate having only one sink. It's a pain for rinsing dishes. And when I am really busy in the kitchen, I like to have a sink of soapy water going so I can clean as I go. But then when I need sink space to drain something to get a pot of water, I've got a sink of soapy water in the way. I would prefer to have that second sink.

                                              4 Replies
                                              1. re: Sooeygun
                                                g
                                                gordeaux Jul 9, 2009 09:17 AM

                                                sounds like your sink is simply too small. A single sink can accomplish everything you'd need if it was large enough. Also, when you needed a larger basin for bigger pots/pans, you'd have it.

                                                1. re: gordeaux
                                                  Sooeygun Jul 10, 2009 04:31 AM

                                                  Well, my sink is fairly large. My largest pots and pans fit with room to spare. I'd love that spare room and even some of my precious counter space was taken with a second sink. I like my parents' sink that is about a 70/30 split. Even a larger single sink isn't going to help when I want to have soapy water on the go to wash as I cook, but oops, I have to drain a pot of pasta. Or for rinsing dishes.

                                                  1. re: Sooeygun
                                                    g
                                                    gordeaux Jul 10, 2009 05:15 AM

                                                    I can do that in mine. I have a little wash tub that fits in the sink. It takes up less than half of it, and when it's in there, the wall of the tub is less thick than the wall that would sep a second sink if I had one, so, I have more room on my "2nd" side. On the 2nd side, I can rinse whatever dishes I want, and drain pots of pasta in any collander with room to spare.

                                                    1. re: gordeaux
                                                      f
                                                      FlyFish Jul 10, 2009 01:29 PM

                                                      Exactly. When we redid the kitchen a few years ago we installed a 28" X 20" X 12" deep single-bowl Franke and it turned out to be one of the smarter moves we made. The plastic wash tub effectively turns it into a double-bowl sink when we want one, allows lots of extra room for other things, and without the tub you can fit just about any cooking device imaginable in there. I really can't imagine going back to a double sink, even a big one, and even if it has the Kohler partial divider discussed earlier.

                                                      We also installed a separate small prep sink alongside the range, which was an even smarter move, but that's a topic for another thread.

                                              2. BeaN Jul 15, 2009 04:19 PM

                                                I put a gigantic black silgranit single bowl sink with the offset drain in my kitchen. It's about big enough to bathe in and shows no water spots. I'll never have stainless again if I can help it.

                                                I use the largest dirty vessel as the wash basin and rinse in the free side. If I want to keep a basin available, I use a plastic one. Because the drain is offset to the right, I put the basin on the left. Having the plumbing offset makes the space under the sink more usable, which is great when every inch counts.

                                                I can wash a broiler pan or the racks from my oven. It's great!

                                                2 Replies
                                                1. re: BeaN
                                                  coney with everything Jul 16, 2009 05:42 AM

                                                  Similar to BeaN--we have a deep silgranit single black sink with a center drain, undermounted. We had stainless before and it always looked dirty. The black doesn't show dirt and looks good with our Silestone countertop.

                                                  It's big enough and deep enough that I can put the produce drawers and shelves from the fridge in it to clean them out.

                                                  1. re: coney with everything
                                                    alkapal Jul 16, 2009 09:34 AM

                                                    "it's big enough, and deep enough, and...dog-gone it, people like it!"
                                                    stuart sink-ey.

                                                2. o
                                                  onocoffee Jul 15, 2009 08:03 PM

                                                  After using professional scullery sinks at my shops for many years, I find those double-bowled 60/40 sinks to be a complete disaster. If you're looking to do it, get one custom-made and let both bowls be big and deep. Ask a local restaurant (or restaurant supply) if they wouldn't mind you taking a measurement of the sink bowl for reference.

                                                  1. s
                                                    Sherri Jul 15, 2009 08:24 PM

                                                    You can put me solidly in the "Single Sink" camp with one caveat -- another sink somewhere close by.

                                                    When building our home, I traveled with a full-sized sheet pan and my 20 qt stock pot (among other things) whenever I was looking at suppliers. Heck, they just lived in my car for 2 years. I wanted to make certain that whatever sink and faucet I chose would accomodate these and other big pieces. I'd spent too many years with double sinks, trying to clean the big stuff, awkardly turning it from top-to-bottom, to want a repeat of this scenario. I never found a double sink that fulfilled my requirements.

                                                    I went with a large single sink for the main and smaller (but not officially called a "prep" sink because many are too small to accomodate dinner plates) sink for another location on the island. This combo has worked extremely well for the past seven years we have lived in this house and I would readily re-do it if we move. Franke makes a big SS beauty.

                                                    I have just finished washing a load of greasy pots, pans, very large colander and bowls, the result of braising and roasting some ducks (Thank you, Barbara Kafka) as well as making a batch of duck stock. Easy-Peasy in the single big sink. I used the smaller sink for supper prep while the really dirty guys soaked for a bit in the big sink.

                                                    I cannot "sell you" on a single bowl sink, I can only relate my own experiences. Your question about washing dishes has already been answered with the "get a small dish pan for the washing" responses you've received. You will need to assess your own cooking style and experiences to decide for yourself what will work best for you.

                                                    1. g
                                                      grant.cook Jul 15, 2009 08:42 PM

                                                      You've got a single bowl toilet.. why's the sink any different?

                                                      1. c
                                                        chocoannie Jul 16, 2009 06:04 AM

                                                        I have the kind of sink mentioned several times (double sink--one side significantly larger than the other) and I wouldn't have anything else. The whole discussion of a sink big enough to wash your biggest pots is valid, but, much more often than washing big pots, I'm looking for just a little bit of hot soapy water to wipe off my counters, appliances, etc. Filling that big sink with hot water several times a day for that would be an incredible waste of water (and the whole rubber dishpan in the sink thing would just be annoying several times a day)....

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. re: chocoannie
                                                          d
                                                          DGresh Jul 16, 2009 06:13 AM

                                                          I have the "smart divide" sink with a low barrier, so it really is plenty big to wash big stuff. And I've noted that a couple people in favor of the "one big bowl" also have a prep sink. That kind of changes the equation in my opinion.

                                                        2. v
                                                          valerie Jul 16, 2009 07:14 AM

                                                          Another vote for a single sink. I have a single sink in my kitchen and I could never imagine voluntarily putting in a double sink. I hate double sinks. When I wash something by hand and it needs a place to dry, I leave it on a dish towel next to the sink to dry (my sink is in the large island in my kitchen so there is plenty of room to lay things out). I used to use paper towels but then I was going through so many, so I bought a bunch of microfiber towels and they are absorbant and I just throw them in the laundry often.

                                                          My only (very big) complaint about my sink is that it is too small. When we renovate this kitchen, I will definitely get a larger sink. Unfortunately, my house needs a lot of renovations upstairs so the kitchen will not likely get a makeover in the near future. One of these years....

                                                          1. alanbarnes Jul 16, 2009 07:37 AM

                                                            I was checking out info on the silgranit sinks that have been mentioned a couple of times here. The manufacturer's website has a like to a brochure entitled "Choosing Your Kitchen Sink." http://www.blancoamerica.com/images_p...

                                                            From that booklet:

                                                            NUMBER OF BOWLS

                                                            The size of your kitchen and your typical activity should be
                                                            considered when deciding how many bowls your sink should have.

                                                            • If multiple cooks are typically working in your kitchen, consider
                                                            the possibility of a second full-size sink.

                                                            • When two cooks use the same sink together, a double bowl
                                                            configuration with equal size bowls may be ideal.

                                                            • If two cooks use the same sink, but one focuses primarily
                                                            on prep work, a 1-1/2 or 1-3/4 bowl design may be the best
                                                            solution, with the smaller bowl positioned on the side of the
                                                            preparation area.

                                                            • For a smaller kitchen a large single bowl design can serve
                                                            many functions.

                                                            FWIW...

                                                            1. j
                                                              Jitterbug Jul 20, 2009 08:24 AM

                                                              We chose to get a large single bowl stainless steel sink. Our kitchen is very small - however, with a larger kitchen I still would stay with a single bowl, although I would perhaps add a second sink elsewhere in the kitchen for rinsing veggies.

                                                              We do have a dishwasher and never rinse a thing that goes in there and it all comes out clean. We don't have much that needs to be washed by hand, as we use pyrex instead of plastic mostly. The only daily-use hand washables are pots & pans. Some bakeware is handwashed as well as delicate glassware, but these are less often used. The pots and pans are often washed over the sink, we don't fill the sink at all but just use a soap and a sponge, then rinse with the high arched faucet sprayer. The sink is only filled if something needs to be soaked, and then it is drained and washed after the draining.

                                                              As others mentioned a lot depends on your habits and what you are willing to change. Maybe you would end up replacing all your plastic, just to be able to put more right in the dishwasher.

                                                              3 Replies
                                                              1. re: Jitterbug
                                                                alkapal Jul 21, 2009 05:06 AM

                                                                jitterbug, i put plastic in the dishwasher all the time. in fact, that really cleans it better than i can. (maybe i'm misinterpreting your post, though).

                                                                1. re: alkapal
                                                                  j
                                                                  Jitterbug Jul 21, 2009 02:33 PM

                                                                  I know some plastic works on the top rack, but I managed to melt some odds & ends plastic items at first - and the OP mentioned handwashing plastics in one of her posts. So I guess what I mean is that I now only buy & use things that are 100% dishwasher friendly (other than pots & pans). I'm just not a fan of doing dishes by hand. :)

                                                                  1. re: Jitterbug
                                                                    alkapal Jul 22, 2009 05:16 AM

                                                                    i get your point. handwashing....sigh...is so tiresome. especially the daily chore of washing my humongo skillet or the le creuset dutch oven.

                                                              2. David A. Goldfarb Jul 21, 2009 06:15 PM

                                                                Aside from using a plastic basin for the two-sink approach to washing dishes in one basin, you can also just put soap on the sponge, scrub and soap up the dishes and rinse as you go, which is how I've done it for years.

                                                                I do like having a sink big enough for my largest pots, but since I've acquired one or two that are too large for any kitchen sink that I'm ever likely to own, and we don't have a sprayer, I picked up one of those flexible shower hoses for a few dollars that attaches to the faucet and that people use for washing their hair or their pets in a sink. It does the job.

                                                                1. s
                                                                  sweetpotater Jul 21, 2009 08:17 PM

                                                                  I had the same question this year, went with the 33" single bowl, and am glad I did. I have an expanding dish rack I can set over half the sink when I am washing dishes. Or I'll put an expanding colander there for veggies. Whatever -- the point is there is tons of flexibility.

                                                                  1. n
                                                                    normalheightsfoodie Jul 21, 2009 08:30 PM

                                                                    A single sink is for people who do not cook. I had a conversation with a designer, and they said as much. If you are washing a large batch of stuff, I prefer to have a clean side for rinsing and a soapy side for the direty soaking stuff.

                                                                    9 Replies
                                                                    1. re: normalheightsfoodie
                                                                      g
                                                                      gordeaux Jul 21, 2009 08:52 PM

                                                                      Your designer sounds completely ill-informed.
                                                                      As many have already attested to, clean side for rinsing and soapy side is easy as pie with a single bowl.

                                                                      Did your designed have a reason for saying that? What you stated has nothing to do with cooking.

                                                                      1. re: normalheightsfoodie
                                                                        s
                                                                        Sherri Jul 22, 2009 07:20 AM

                                                                        normalheightsfoodie writes:
                                                                        "A single sink is for people who do not cook.

                                                                        This statement is completely unfounded.
                                                                        I own a large single sink.
                                                                        I'm a retired teaching chef.
                                                                        I cook.
                                                                        I cook a lot.
                                                                        I prep and wash up in a single sink.
                                                                        Your assertion is the worst kind of blanket exaggeration and utter nonsense.

                                                                        1. re: normalheightsfoodie
                                                                          David A. Goldfarb Jul 22, 2009 09:00 AM

                                                                          Nonsense. People who cook a lot are likely to have vessels that can't be cleaned easily in a tiny sink or a divided sink that would fit in a typical home sized kitchen.

                                                                          In general I think a lot of designers who design fancy kitchens probably don't cook, and often design kitchens for people who don't cook.

                                                                          1. re: David A. Goldfarb
                                                                            n
                                                                            normalheightsfoodie Jul 22, 2009 10:47 AM

                                                                            I have a very deep double sink and it holds everything. I think the single sinks are pretentious.

                                                                            1. re: normalheightsfoodie
                                                                              d
                                                                              DGresh Jul 22, 2009 11:05 AM

                                                                              wow, pretentious?
                                                                              Can't we all admit that there are pros and cons for each? That there is no right answer for everyone? Personally I like the divided, low barrier ("smart divide") sink I have because I'm a messy cook who likes to pile up lots of dirty pans while I'm cooking and still have a clean spot to peel my veggies into. That's my preference. Others "work" differently in the kitchen so something else works better for them. Sort of like having an argument over whether or not to trade cabinet space for an extra dishwasher. While I personally would never do that, others swear by it. To each his own....

                                                                              1. re: DGresh
                                                                                g
                                                                                gordeaux Jul 22, 2009 11:50 AM

                                                                                I think normalheights is simply trying to get people's goats. I kinda think it's funny too. Come on, "pretentious?"

                                                                                You got me at first, normalheights. Well done.

                                                                                1. re: gordeaux
                                                                                  n
                                                                                  normalheightsfoodie Jul 22, 2009 01:57 PM

                                                                                  Sometimes people needed to be reminded to have a sense of humor about things.

                                                                                  1. re: normalheightsfoodie
                                                                                    alkapal Jul 22, 2009 05:50 PM

                                                                                    nhf, i think you were serious about the designer's statement to the effect of "single sinks are for people who don't cook", now see how utterly ridiculous the designer's statement really was, and you are backing away. interesting contribution....thanks.

                                                                          2. re: normalheightsfoodie
                                                                            Jay F Jan 23, 2011 06:50 AM

                                                                            >>>>A single sink is for people who do not cook.<<<<

                                                                            Oh, please.

                                                                          3. alkapal Jul 22, 2009 05:19 AM

                                                                            i too often "wash as i go" with individual pieces in the sink, but my "green-before-it-was-trendy-because-she-is-from-the-thrifty-depression-era" mom reminds me that the "wash and rinse each dish" approach, eschewing the "wash-basin and rinse-basin approach," is wasteful of water.
                                                                            <phew! ;-)>

                                                                            ~~~~~~
                                                                            as to the "designer" who said that single sinks are for people who do not cook, i find that opinion to be so ludicrous! as gordeaux wants to know -- what is the rationale? <maybe i'm too cynical, but do the big double sinks cost more, so that a designer would get more of a cut?>

                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                            1. re: alkapal
                                                                              g
                                                                              gordeaux Jul 22, 2009 07:17 AM

                                                                              In SS, if the guages are the same, the doubles are always cheaper. The larger ones need special reinforcements. I was amazed at the price difference when we bought ours. I figured a single would have to be cheaper. Not so. But I didn't see the point of buying a sink, and eating up all that space to divide it. I still am not sure what a double sink can do that a single sink cannot if they are the same size. However, it's very clear that a single sink can do things that a double cannot.
                                                                              As for ppl who don't cook, I wonder if that statenment was just to elicit responses, because for the life of me I cannot comprehend it. I have a single sink, and in the past seven days, I've made sushi - nigiri and maki, thai red curry (not from a can,) butter chicken, aloo gobi, chana masala, a vat of salsa for a party (hot and mild, 10 qts in all,) taken in and processed two deliveries from my csa guy, strawberry preserves, three weeks worth of baby food (cauliflower, peaches, green beans, sweet potatoes, and turkey) pad thai, quick chicken chow fun (my quick go to dinner during the week.) Fried rice with fried tofu and chicken, 4lbs of chicken salad, a few full hash brown, eggs sausage and toast breakfasts with fruit salad, some wicked garlicky pasta salad with the four scapes I'd been hording in the fridge for the past three weeks - It was time to use them :-(

                                                                              That's just the good stuff that I can remember.
                                                                              Was the designer equating actual cooking with rinsing things in one side of a sink? If so, I think I might know a designer who has no idea how to cook.

                                                                            2. s
                                                                              suc Aug 10, 2009 05:35 PM

                                                                              I have read through all of the various opinions on configurations of kitchen sinks. There is one item that has not been discussed. That is the washing meats, especially chicken, prior to cooking, since it requires that the sink or area where it is prepared be sanitized afterwards. How do people with the various sink shapes- single, double, double with lowered center - deal with this? I can see it more easily being done with a double sink, so that any bacteria does not contaminate the other side of the sink, but I am sure those with sinks other than double sinks have a way of dealing with this in a sanitary way. I would appreciate any comments/opinions regarding this.

                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                              1. re: suc
                                                                                g
                                                                                gordeaux Aug 11, 2009 08:14 AM

                                                                                If you have a single sink, you'd simply sanitize the sink afterwards. I don't keep clean utensils or pans in my sink, so there are no worries about contaminating things that will be used straight from the sink.

                                                                                1. re: suc
                                                                                  David A. Goldfarb Aug 11, 2009 02:13 PM

                                                                                  Just like any surface that gets dirty in the kitchen--clean as you go.

                                                                                2. m
                                                                                  Mishmash Oct 14, 2009 12:41 AM

                                                                                  Out of curiosity, how did this project go and what type of sink did you choose? We have a stainless steel single sink with garbage disposal. The house is old and came this way. I wasn't excited about this setup at first, but I have found the single sink useful for pots/pans. I do use a large bowl of soapy water for small items like silver spoons that I want to keep separate. I end up piling dishes on the counter a lot in the process. Finally, I know our canine friends were mentioned but I also find a big single sink useful for washing a kiddie up.

                                                                                  3 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: Mishmash
                                                                                    d
                                                                                    dmd_kc Oct 14, 2009 09:51 AM

                                                                                    The sink will be installed next week, so I haven't had the chance to use it yet, but I'm pretty confident I'll be happy with my choice.

                                                                                    I chose an extra-deep double 50/50 bowl stainless sink with zero-radius (square) corners, offset drains and sink grids. I've been washing dishes the same way all my life, with one bowl for washing and the other for rinsing. I also often rely on having one side of the sink devoted to soaking while I'm in the middle of cooking. That's particularly vital when I'm using the food processor, for example, because I've found that soaking it the second you're done makes cleanup instantaneous when you get to it. That wouldn't be possible if I needed another sink for something else while I'm still in the cooking process.

                                                                                    I've never had huge frustrations with not being able to get vessels into even the ridiculously small 5"-deep sink that's due for tear-out next week.

                                                                                    A major factor was the idea of having the garbage disposer in a single-drain sink. I very often need to use the disposer while things are soaking or washing in another bowl. That is, of course, impossible with a single bowl.

                                                                                    In the end, I decided two bowls, two drains are the only way to go for me. I know others disagree.

                                                                                    1. re: dmd_kc
                                                                                      BeaN Oct 14, 2009 07:25 PM

                                                                                      You have to live with it and you have to pay for it. That means that you get to pick anything that you want. ANYTHING! What works for me may not work for you.

                                                                                      I hope that you love your new sink. I'm in a rental right now, pining for my big black single bowl. . .

                                                                                      1. re: BeaN
                                                                                        d
                                                                                        dmd_kc Oct 15, 2009 12:39 PM

                                                                                        Exactly. I've never known two people who use the kitchen the same way. For tons of people, microwaves above the oven are ideal. Mine's below the counter top in a special shelf I built into the cabinet. That's the only way I've ever been comfortable using one.

                                                                                        I really appreciated all the great feedback and I ideas I got from this thread. They led me to several possibilities I hadn't considered before.

                                                                                  2. David A. Goldfarb Nov 1, 2009 04:43 AM

                                                                                    Another reason to have a large single bowl sink that occurs to me is that it's very handy when you have something like a large quantity of fresh spinach to wash. Wash out the sink, fill it up, toss and churn the spinach in the water, and the sand will settle to the bottom. Drain and rinse out the sand, and repeat the process two more times, and you've got three pounds or more of clean spinach.

                                                                                    Show Hidden Posts