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A simple, quality-built mobile trolley is worth its weight in salt. Big enough to carry weighty items yet sleek enough to move easily through a busy area is the ideal type of unit for most occasions.

Getting the right type of mobile trolley for your kitchen or entertaining is simple enough, provided you have a firm idea of what you want to do with it and understand the utility of the piece you are choosing.

Some households prefer a trolley table that’s pretty enough to show off yet handle glassware and food items, work purely as drinks trolleys, and for others still, it’s all about the cheese.

Check out some simple advice below to help shape your inspiration and find the right type of effective mobile kitchen unit for your needs.

1. Aim for stability over style

Kitchen Trolley
Image Source: Phil and Pam Gradwell via Flickr CC BY 2.0

I prefer stainless steel for kitchen gear in most situations, but a sturdy mobile wood trolley (properly treated or lacquered) or item crafted specifically for your space (chopping board storage, mobile coffee cart, or tea station) is also extremely useful.

Try to focus on durable materials with wide functionality and smart storage that accentuates the space needed for multiple uses.

Cutlery and condiment drawers are also a huge plus as they can remain out of sight, out of mind until called upon.

2. Stainless steel appeal

Stainless Steel Trolley
Image Source: Smylers via Flickr CC BY-SA

Stainless steel kitchen trolleys are almost trend-proof. Whether you’re laying out a small cafe in another part of the house or barricading hungry teenagers out of the kitchen, there are a range of uses, sizes, and styles.

One thing to consider with the steel industrial style is that you will likely need extra equipment for storing glassware, small items, and cutlery (but this provides an opportunity to add flair and excitement in style choices).

If versatility is your thing, get a steel unit that can easily store different types of glassware, particularly wine glasses and flutes. It eases the load, is easy to clean, and tends to keep breakage to a minimum because everything has its’ spot.

One day I want to adapt a tool trolley from the garage to use in the kitchen.

3. Say no to plastic

Drinks Cart
Image Source: FTD Flowers via Flickr CC BY 2.0

Sure, there are plenty of inexpensive options for kitchen trolleys made from plastic, but unless the foundations are crafted from metal or wood, you’ll eventually run into trouble over time as the unit ages (and warps).

If you’re willing to go with short-term trolley options they’re perfectly adequate, but if you are looking for a piece to last a long time, a quality metal or wooden option is more likely to last and look good.

It’s also extremely difficult to find a plastic trolley unit that is both stylish and functional, but it can be cleaned and maintained reasonably well.

4. Wheels are important

Good Wheels
Image Source: thesawguy7 Via Flickr CC BY 2.0

Pushing a trolley from one place to another can be a wild ride when covering an old floor, carpeted space, or long hallway.

Make sure to find an option where you’re not worried that the whole kit and caboodle will tip over on the way to your guests and everything breaks in a movie scene disaster.

The better the wheels, the better your rig. Don’t overlook the importance of a good trolley wheelbase, and a brake is also extremely useful for added stability.

5. Versatility versus authenticity

Brass Drinks Trolley
Image Source: US Embassy Sweden CC BY 2.0

Kitchen refreshment trolleys are more representative of personality. The type of table you like to use often reflects the purpose of your entertainment. Some people prefer a unit that can be useful in every scenario, whereas others like specialized trolleys and carts with limited uses (or mobility).

Modern trends have embraced the idea of turning trolleys into coffee bar carts. You can put one in your kitchen to free up the cabinet and counter space. If you don’t drink coffee, you could opt for a tea trolley or fruit cart instead.


A stainless steel trolley in your home kitchen means you’re all business. Plastic may be cheap but always looks unhappy. Something more stylish than functional may be great now, but might not be later.

Make sure you compare the types of trolleys before making your choice. You can find the right options for you by establishing what you need, and factoring in design elements to help make your choice.

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