Deciding on the best kitchen paint colors can be surprisingly stressful, especially if you plan on painting your cabinets. Kitchen cabinetry is a major expense, and with so much of your budget on the line, repainting faded cabinets or selecting a color for a new set can be daunting. When confronted with a seemingly endless selection of shades in the paint aisle, the process doesn’t get much easier.
To help narrow down the infinite options available, we polled a selection of interior designers to see what they always reach for when creating stylish spaces. We don’t know about you, but when our go-to interior design sources reveal their secrets, we take note. From dusty greens to crisp whites and deep blues, keep reading for eight kitchen paint color picks by the pros.
For High Contrast
"We love Farrow & Ball All White for walls and upper cabinets. It's a nice modern white, not too cold and not too creamy. We also love the high-contrast kitchen with black lower cabinets and white upper cabinets. For that, we again look to Farrow & Ball for Pitch Black. I know it sounds crazy, but if you go with a more charcoal color, cabinets often end up looking navy blue, so better just to go pitch black. Also, as of late, we've been obsessed with a deep dusty green tone for cabinetry, like Farrow & Ball Studio Green or Ralph Lauren Porch Awning." — Brandon Quattrone, Consort
For a Neutral Base
"Benjamin Moore Gray Owl is a soft warm gray that works beautifully in a white kitchen. It complements most stone countertop tones and allows for a multitude of accent colors." — Amanda Reynal, Reynal Interiors
For a Brighter Space
“I recently painted a kitchen Sherwin Williams Knitting Needles, a very soft gray that has great light-reflecting qualities. It’s a great choice for both cabinetry and walls.” — Jeff Andrews, Jeff Andrews Design
To Complement Natural Wood Floors
“Benjamin Moore Fossil is my go-to gray right now because it is very subtle but stands out as a strong neutral against white walls and natural hardwood floors. You could also only paint the top cabinets this color and go for something bold on the bottom row.” — Karen Vidal, Design Vidal
For a Crisp White Kitchen
“I love the look of a crisp white kitchen. It’s bright, classic, and timeless. My go-to shade for kitchen cabinets is Benjamin Moore’s Simply White, which looks fantastic in any light.” — Paloma Contreras, Paloma Contreras Design and La Dolce Vita Blog
For a Pop of Color
“For cabinets, I am more drawn to the material and detail of the actual cabinet and aim to keep the paint neutral, bright, and reflective of what may be going on in nearby rooms. My go-tos for paint colors are Decorators White by Benjamin Moore and Shaded White by Farrow & Ball for that European look. A contrast on an island or lower cabinets can be fun, and once again I lean toward a fun color that may run throughout the space, a deep gray, like Down Pipe from Farrow & Ball, or a blue that reminds me of the deepest depths of the ocean, like Stiffkey Blue from Farrow & Ball.” — Brian Paquette, Brian Paquette Interiors
For a Not-So-Basic White
“For our clients who want the feel of a timeless white kitchen but with something a little more distinctive, Farrow & Ball’s Blackened serves up the perfect light, soft gray. The color is incredibly versatile, and Farrow & Ball makes a product so unique that no other paint manufacturer can truly match their gorgeous, saturated pigments (we’ve tried!).” — Brynn Olson, Brynn Olson Design Group
For a Bit of Drama
“I would paint the walls Benjamin Moore’s lovely Newburyport Blue and pair with white cabinets and brass fixtures—hot!” — Taniya Nayak, Taniya Nayak Design
Experiment with these eight kitchen paint colors to transform your space into one you'll truly enjoy spending time in.
This story was originally published on July 31, 2015, and has since been updated.