10 Camper Van Slide Out Kitchen Ideas & Products

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You’re converting a camper van and want to save as much interior living space as possible. Perhaps you like the idea of cooking outdoors in nature or maybe your van is too short to even stand up inside. Slide-out kitchens are a popular way to utilize drawer slides and hidden compartments to extend your cooking space. 

In my 6 years on the road living full-time van life, I’ve come to really appreciate easy cooking setups that allow for home-cooked meals on the go. Of all the van dwellers I’ve met, those with slide-outs, pop-ups, and hidden functionalities seem to be cooking up the best meals with the least amount of setup required. Let’s dig into 10 innovative camper van slide out kitchen ideas!

10 Camper Van Slide Out Kitchens

Whether you want a prefab kitchen, a DIY design, or a professional build, these unique slide-out kitchen ideas will sow seeds of inspiration for the perfect van cooking setup.

Prefab Slide-Out Kitchen Products

These options are ready to install and hit the road quickly with very little carpentry skills needed.

Top Pick: The Original Nomad Kitchen by Nomad Kitchen Co.

For those who want to hit the road ASAP and don’t quite understand the complexities of carpentry, drawer slides, and hardware, this fully outfitted slide-out kitchen is ready to install and start cooking. The compact design is only 25” deep, 20” wide, and 14” high, meaning it can easily fit under a seat in any van so you can cook out of the back. Simply attach it to cargo tie-down points, install your water tank, drop in a two-burner stove, and you’re ready to cook on the road!

The Original Nomad Kitchen includes a durable and aesthetically pleasing design with everything you need to get cooking, including:

  • Stainless steel washbasin
  • Bamboo cutting board 
  • A drawer for your stove (sold separately)
  • Straw to attach 1 lb propane tank
  • Storage basket/dish drying back
  • Hanger hooks
  • Space for a water tank

The entire unit weighs just 56.5 lbs and is designed to support up to 400 lbs on top. The 150 lb rated drawer slides ensure you can put a stove, dishes, and delicious meals on top without worrying about it toppling. No support legs are needed! The wood is aesthetically pleasing and nicely finished in tan or black to fit your design. The kitchens are made in California and highly reviewed for their longevity.

Pros

  • Quick install design – no building needed!
  • Quality wood and durable hardware to support up to 400lbs
  • No support legs
  • Customizable configurations for any vehicle

Cons

  • Moderately expensive
  • Only fits a 2 burner propane stove (sold separately)
  • Primarily designed to go out of the back of the van rather than the side

Best Pull-Out Fridge Option: Serg Supply Sprinter Passenger Side Kitchen Galley

Although this unit is technically fixed in place, the slide-out fridge makes it a unique space-saving option for people who want their camper van to feel more like a home. The 40” cabinet is designed for the passenger side of a high-roof van by the sliding door. It is expertly constructed with quality maple and bamboo, a NanoTec black-coated sink, hinged door, a pullout drawer, as well as soft close hinges and drawer slides. 

This galley is compatible with the Isotherm drawer refrigerator, which you can order yourself or have professionally preinstalled for maximum convenience. Again, you won’t need to do much more than install it and get on the road! This is perfect for anyone intimidated by DIY kitchen building. The footprint is 40” wide x 22.75” deep and the overall height is 35.75.”

Pros

  • No building skills needed
  • Prebuilt professional finish
  • Home-like aesthetic
  • Pull-out fridge to save space and easily access food
  • Built-in sink, cabinet, and drawer

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Requires a high-roof van for interior cooking
  • Only compatible with Isotherm DR65 or DR85 refrigerators
  • Installed in-place
  • No room for seating on top of the slide-out

Most Durable and Customizable: CamperConversionKits on Etsy

Etsy has some great custom options

For overlanders who want to camp in the far-out wilderness, this ultra-durable aluminum framed custom slide-out kitchen provides rugged durability in a compact, minimalist box that can easily fit under a bench seat. This company offers 3D laser-printed designs for easy customization and replacement parts. The sleek kitchen design offers lots of prep space and a built-in stove, but no sink.

Pros

  • Very high-quality customizable kit
  • Aluminum frame for long-term durability
  • Easy-slide hardware
  • Includes 3 pit stove and lots of prep space
  • Panels can easily be swapped or replaced
  • Aesthetic compact box folds to 39” x 18” x 9.25”
  • Strong slides (no supports needed)
  • Easy assembly with basic tools

Cons

  • Moderately expensive
  • No sink or water system included

SHIWAGIN Wooden Overland Camping Slide-Out Kitchen with Drawer, for SUV/Trunk/Cargo/Storage Space, for 2 Burners Stove, Folding Design.

Budget Option: SHIWAGIN Wooden Overland Camping Slide Out Kitchen

If you don’t have much time or money to spend on your camper van kitchen, this budget option gets the job done with minimal bells and whistles. Designed to be ratchet-strapped into a van’s cargo tie-down, this 48-pound wooden slide-out doesn’t require any drilling. It has two slide-outs to make room for two people to wash, chop, and cook in the same space. 

The space-saving foldable design includes a space for a propane cookstove, 1 side drawer, a mini folding sink, and an area to install a 5-gallon water jug. The drawer slides are moderately strong but require a standing support leg.

Pros

  • No building skills needed
  • No drilling into the van
  • Great for “drop-in” quick van installs for short-term road trips
  • Overlapping parts collapse into one compact piece
  • Very affordable

Cons

  • Not ideal for long-term van life
  • No running water or drainage system
  • Wood is not super thick
  • Lacks water resistance for cooking in any weather

Inspiring Slide-Out Kitchen Ideas for a Van Conversion

While these concepts require a lot more planning and clever carpentry, they can open your eyes to the world of possibility for a functional, beautiful, and space-saving slide-out kitchen. When embarking on a DIY kitchen install, I highly recommend drawing out your plan from several angles using graph paper or an app like Vanspace3D.

Sliding Door Slide Out

Embrace a minimalist aesthetic by keeping your interior countertop sleek and bare with a fully loaded cook space that slides out to the passenger or driver side. Don’t forget to use ultra-strong drawer slides like Firgellia Automations’ Full Extension 400 lb Ball Bearing Slides. This is an especially great option if you have a van awning for rainy days and bad weather.

Image courtesy of PeachwoodCo

Under-Bed Cooking

Leave plenty of interior space for a queen-size bed and couch by installing a kitchen that slides out from the “garage” area of the van. 

Garage kitchens save a lot of space inside

Under-Bench Cooking

Save space for back-area seating with a kitchen that emerges from a low-profile back bench.

DIY Camper Van Kitchen With Sink and Propane Stove #VANLIFE : 8 Steps -  Instructables
Image courtesy of Woodbrew

Driver Partition

Section off the front of your van with a divider wall and slide-out cooking space that brings your cutting and prep-work outside, while keeping the sink, fridge, and stove indoors.

Image courtesy of @max_gd

Extravagant Back Kitchen

Go all out in living “out the back” of your van with this gorgeous rear kitchen setup that keeps the eating, lounging, and sleeping quarters separate from your cooking area.

Amazing Rear Kitchen in Recycled Van Conversion 4
Image courtesy of @recycleinn

Key Takeaways

No matter what kitchen you choose, remember that a successful slide-out requires ultra-strong drawer slides, hidden storage for a stove, a proper sink setup, and plenty of chopping and prep space. 

Photo of author

AUTHOR

Logan Hailey is a writer, natural wellness educator, and full-time van lifer. A nomad at heart, she has lived on the road for 5 years and counting, first in a DIY skoolie and now in her self-converted Sprinter van. She is passionate about living in harmony with nature and creating off-grid van vessels to enjoy the beauty of wild places. Keep up with her adventures on Instagram (@naturallylogan), TikTok, and YouTube.

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