Picture of Butcher Block  Kitchen Prep Station
shelf island NEW.jpg
Butcher Block Kitchen Prep Station

The footprint  of this project is 33 ¾” wide, 25 1/8” deep and 35 ½” tall. The island has one 4” deep drawer and two open shelves.

The  butcher block top overhangs 2” on both sides and 1 1/4” front and back. The top is 37 ¾” wide, 26 5/8” and 1 ½” thick. The entire project is made from maple.

The construction of the butcher block top was featured in a previous Instructables.

The legs are made from 2 pieces of 1 5/8” stock that were glued together and then milled to 3” square.

The construction  joinery is mortise and tenon. The slats for the shelves are screwed to the stretchers and concealed with contrasting wood plugs.

This project requires basic woodworking skills and access to woodworking machines. Woodworking machines have sharp cutting edges and are NOT forgiving. You should be properly trained  in the use of these machines. Ensure that you wear safety glasses and  hearing protection, use push sticks, hold-downs , clamps  and a cutting sled to cut the project parts safely.

On a scale of 1-10, 10 being very difficult, this project is a “4”.

Materials Needed:
  • Approximately 30 linear feet of maple, 2” thick for the legs.
  • Approximately 20 linear feet of 1 ¼” thick maple, 6” wide for the aprons and stretchers.
  • Approximately 40 linear feet of  1” thick maple, 3” wide for the shelf slats.
  • 150 and 180 grit sandpaper and 0000 steel wool.
  • Yellow woodworkers glue
  • Min-Wax Wipe-On Poly varnish
  • Locking Casters (4)

Tools & Equipment Needed:
  • Table saw
  • Router table (straight and dovetail router bits)
  • 8” jointer
  • Planner or  flat bed drum sander
  • Block plane
  • Bar or pipe clamps
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AndyPipkin2 years ago
Nice, but you should only prep meat on a plastic board?

This is not true. Actually, plastic boards are terrible for frequent cutting, as small pieces of plastic are frequently shaved off the board and end up in our food. Properly cleaned wood boards do not hold bacteria any more than glass or plastic. Glass is perfectly acceptable from a safety standpoint, but it significantly dulls knives. Any chef worth their salt is using wood (and anyone who cares about the enviornment and loves to cook is using Bamboo.)

kerklein21 year ago
Where did you get those casters? They are very nice.
williewolf (author)  kerklein21 year ago
Woodworker's Journal has an online store that you can purchase them.

or from Rockler Woodworking @

Hope this helps.

WUVIE2 years ago
This is amazing. Bravo for all of your dedication. It shows!
I'm in the middle of creating something similar, but am embarrassed to put it up now as what you've done it amazing, and the bodged pocket-screwed thing I'm cooking up definitely isn't in the same league as this project. My only excuse is not having access to some of the tools you've got (in reality it's probably a good deal of laziness too).
Thanks for a great instructional (and a reminder of how much I have yet to learn about woodworking!) Absolutely brilliant, and detailed stuff.
Absolutely beautifull! And an excellent job on your instructable!
Wragie2 years ago
Re the q about prepping meat on wood. Wood doesn't support microbial growth. And the way to maintain/clean/cure is by washing then rubbing down with salt. The moist salt gets into all the knife cuts etc and kills off any growths. Some people will say to use bleach water but that can add a flavour to foods. And thumbs up to this :-)
Re-design2 years ago
Very nice work on both the project and the instrucable.
IzNoGuD2 years ago
Lorddrake2 years ago
A beautiful job crafting the prep station. Great job documenting your process. Now I just need to find a fully stocked woodworking shop I can borrow to make my own :)
Few Bits2 years ago
rgilliam2 years ago
Nice Work! Wished I had time to build one. Take Care - Roy
You did such a wonderful job documenting your process and materials. Thank you so much for the share, and great project.