Great glazed kitchen extension ideas for a bright cooking space

large white kitchen and living room with bifolding doors and rooflights
(Image credit: Origin Global)

Glazed kitchen extension ideas are essential to creating a welcoming and bright addition to act as the new hub of the home. Glazing can also provide a much connection between your new kitchen extension and your garden.

With so many beautiful images out there online or in magazines it can be hard to decide which kitchen extension ideas to include in your own project. Not only does budget come into play, but also the overall style of the project. Windows, doors and other forms of glazing massively impact the aesthetics of any home and the budget, so should be given some serious thought from the start. 

Take a look below as we delve into the different types of glazing for kitchen extensions and where each one is best placed. 

1. Introduce light from above 

dark blue kitchen with grey island and large rooflight

(Image credit: Olive & Barr)

Rooflights are an adaptable and elegant way of glazing a kitchen extension. What's more, this feature can be included alongside pretty much any big or small kitchen extension ideas

Bespoke sizes and unusual configurations or forms are popular (including circles and oversized, walk-on rooflights), but come with added cost. So too do additions like automatic openings and self-cleaning glass.

Off-the-shelf size choices are also widely available and interesting designs can be created around them. For instance, if your rooflight will be unopenable, continue the wall finish around the frame to encourage the illusion of thinner sightlines. 

Other ideas for a kitchen extension with skylights to consider, include: 

  • Installing them deeper in the floorplan where the extension joins the existing house, to introduce natural light where it's needed most
  • Positioning above preparation areas for additional diffused light
  • Including LED light strips to provide night-time illumination
  • Designing a bank of rooflights along an elevation with doesn't naturally receive much natural light.

2. Use patio doors to connect a glazed kitchen extension to the garden

pale, modern kitchen diner extension with black steel patio doors

(Image credit: Ca'Pietra)

Building a kitchen extension can often provide an opportunity to connect with outdoor spaces. Capitalise on this by using glazing where you can with patio door ideas

The type of patio door you choose will depend on how you want to transition from inside to out, the style of your extension (as well as the original house), and your budget.

Kitchen extensions with bifolds benefit from being able to stack the panels of glazing back against a wall, opening up the interior to the garden. However, when closed, some models feature thick bars where the panels join together. 

Sliding doors eradicate this if you want constant good views to the outside while closed, but they can only open half way, unless you create a pocket cassette in the wall for them to slide into, which can be costly. 

Finally, French, Belgian and Steel-framed doors tend to suit a traditional/heritage style that works with both contemporary and period-inspired designs. However, they don't offer the uninterrupted views that the other aforementioned options do.

3. Add an extra aspect with a side window

white kitchen extension with picture window and sliding doors

(Image credit: Jeremy Phillips)

While it might be tempting to focus on glazing which faces the rear garden, a side aspect can bring an unexpected view into the space. 

For instance, a long narrow window style adjacent to a sink will provide a welcome view during cleaning and washing up time. 

Similarly a picture window near a dining area can add an informal extra seat, as this stunning extension demonstrates. 

This will reduce your reliance on artificial lighting around the room, making the kitchen extension more efficient overall. Just ensure the view you're framing is a good one — green walls and planting along side alleys or so on will provide a greener view, for instance.

4. Look up high with clerestory windows

rustic kitchen and sitting extension with lots of rear glazing

(Image credit: Dave Burton)

Clerestory windows – typically consisting of a row of windows or glazing above eye level – can be are ideal for bringing a wash of natural light over the room as a whole. 

This glazed kitchen extension idea can not only help bring natural light deeper into the floorplan, but can also be utilised to introduce natural light down the side of buildings, where overlooking might otherwise be an issue. 

5. Mix and match kitchen extension glazing styles

modern kitchen extension wih rooflights and bifolding doors

(Image credit: Ca' Pietra)

To achieve a kitchen extension which truly utilises glazing to its maximum potential, you will need to mix and match your favourite styles. 

You don't necessarily need to buy all your glazing from the same supplier or even use the same materials to create a unified look. In fact contrasting warm timber with a contemporary aluminium can work quite well. 

Track the path the sun makes before you commit to an extension design using a lot of glazing. Although it might sound great for a south facing kitchen conservatory extension to be full of windows, this can end in a greenhouse-like effect where a solar coating needs to be applied or overheating measures enacted.

Amy Reeves

Assistant Editor Amy began working for Homebuilding & Renovating in 2018. She has an interest in sustainable building methods and always has her eye on the latest design ideas. Amy has interviewed countless self builders, renovators and extenders about their experiences for Homebuilding & Renovating magazine. She is currently renovating a mid-century home, together with her partner, on a DIY basis, and has recently fitted her own kitchen.