The U-shaped kitchen is the most versatile layout for kitchens large and small because the layout offers continuous countertops and ample storage, which surround the cook on three sides. In larger kitchens, this floor plan is spacious enough to be divided into multiple work stations for cooks to easily prepare a meal together without getting in each other’s way. How to enhance the U-shaped kitchen layout: To maximize storage and keep countertops clutter free, conceal the microwave in a base or wall cabinet and store large cooking essentials in a corner lazy susan.