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Must Kitchen Outlets Be 20 Amp? What You Need To Know

Kitchen outlets are often wired to provide 20 amp, 120-volt circuits to supply power to GFCI outlets, especially for countertop areas. Must kitchen outlets be 20 amp?

Kitchens must have at least two 20 AMP outlets. These outlets are used to power high voltage appliances such as toasters, blenders, and microwave ovens.

The necessary power supply to operate common kitchenware appliances typically is 20 Amps. There are many reasons why 20 amps are the bare minimum to operate kitchen equipment. We’re going to cover all the reasons.

First, let’s learn what are Amps and why you should know the number of Amps necessary to operate kitchen equipment.

List Of 20 AMP Powered Kitchen Outlets

Why Are 20 Amps The Standard For Kitchen Equipment?

Kitchens, by code, are required to have at least two 20 amp, 120-volt circuits to be installed on every kitchen countertop.

The main reason for this is so the outlet can handle enough amps to power simple kitchen cookware such as microwave ovens, toasters, and blenders. 20-amp outlets will power all of the equipment above.

The two outlets give the homeowner enough space to plug different units in different spaces without crowding one small part of the countertop. When purchasing a home, be sure to ask the realtor or electrician which outlet provides which amps.

What Appliances Use 20 Amp Outlets?

Having at least 2 20 Amp outlets are required by most electrical codes ( we always recommend checking with your local electrician about your state’s code, as it will vary from state to state).

The importance of having 2 20 amp outlets in your kitchen is to be able to power appliances that require a higher voltage of power, in order to run. This is typically any device with a motor that provides a high amount of power output.

Examples of these appliances are:

  • Mixers
  • Blenders
  • Microwave Ovens
  • Toasters

These appliances may require additional amperes in order to run, so it’s always good to consider having a few outlets, in an area with space, to be able to fit these appliances to be used when necessary.

What Amp Powered Outlets Are Available To Purchase?

The other most common type of electrical outlet is the 15 amp outlet. If the outlet is not 20 amp, there’s a good chance it’s providing a 15 amp circuit.

15 amp outlets, however, will not be able to give the electricity needed to power these large electrical tools.

15 amp electrical outlets are fit for basic lighting requirements such as ceiling fixtures, cabinet lighting, or any standard kitchen counter lighting. Be sure to check the manual of each light fixture to ensure that 15 amps are the minimum amount output needed.

Here’s a great resource for kitchen electric codes which can be used as a guide when installing electrical outlets.

What Are Amps?

Amps are short for ampere. It’s an electric unit of measurement that measures the electromagnetic force between electric conductors carrying an electric current.

Essentially, an amp is a unit of measurement that measures electrical currents and output. The higher the amps, the more power that is being put out through the outlet.

We want to find the right amount of electrical power for our kitchen appliances so they don’t short out or aren’t overpowered by the number of amps that are being put out by the current.

What 20 Amp Outlets Can I Purchase For My Kitchen?

20 amp outlets can be purchased at your local hardware store and installed by an electrician. If you’re looking for online solutions to be delivered directly to you, we recommend these outlets.

They commonly come in packs of 10 or more so you’re saving money and have plenty to fill a kitchen.

BESTTEN 20 Amp GFCI Receptacle Outlet


The Bestten 20 amp GFCI receptacle outlet is a great standard outlet that looks great with any white walls. This outlet is 125 volts and has red and black buttons for reset and testing, which is great for any shortage or power outage.

Another great feature is the LED indicator status light. When on, the GFCI indicator light will indicate the power is working or in testing mode. If it’s off, the outlet is indicating there is a malfunction, not wired properly or the power is off.

This is a great system for you to know which outlet is dead, and when an electrician should be called to fix the power outage.

Buy the Bestten GFCI outlet with a 10-pack to fit your entire kitchen outlets and house outlets for 20 amp power.

Leviton Self-Test Smartlock Pro

20 amp outlet

The Leviton smartlock pro is a 20 amp tamper-resistant receptacle that also has an LED indicator light. The light itself uses only 1W of electricity, which doesn’t the bulb doesn’t need to be replaced.

As the product description states ” For an added layer of protection, the GFCI regularly conducts an automatic internal test to confirm that it can respond to a ground fault”.

Built-in lockout action prevents a reset if the GFCI is damaged or cannot respond to a ground fault.

The slim and shallow design is great for standard outlets that can be paired with any kitchen design.


In conclusion, be sure to check what outlets the electrician is installing and where. It’s important to know which outlets are 15 amp and which are 20 amp, so you can provide an antiquate amount of power to the kitchen appliance.

The reason it’s best to check with an electrician before installing any outlet is to make sure the wiring is in place to be able to handle the power for 20 amp outlet. Electricians will know exactly which outlet is providing the right kind of power.

Having a 20 Amp outlet is crucial to be able to power most kitchen appliances that feature a motor to heat up or blend food. These appliances typically require a high amount of voltage in order to properly work. The last thing you’ll want is short appliances or it not work because it doesn’t have the proper amount of power.

How many 20 amp outlets do you have in your kitchen? Do you think you need more than the electrical code requires? Let us know in the comment section below how many 20 amp outlets should be available.

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