The heart of the home deserves a little color.

By Lauren Phillips
Updated December 06, 2018
Kitchen color schemes: Colorful yellow kitchen
Credit: Bulgac/Getty Images

Picking a kitchen color scheme is quite the commitment: If replacing kitchen cabinets is involved, the kitchen renovation can cost a pretty penny and isn’t something most people will do more than once or twice. (Most people budget and spend more than $25,001 on their kitchen renovation, according to a recent study.)

Even without a major overhaul, though, picking the right kitchen colors means picking shades the family won’t get sick of any time soon. Passionate cooks (or passionate eaters) will also spend a good chunk of time in the room, so it’s important to pick just the right color that will, ideally, make people feel more than happy to be there.

To help the kitchen color scheme brainstorm along, here are six stylish kitchens that anyone would love to spend time in. (And they’re not all white!) Pull inspiration from the countertop, paint color, cabinet, and tile selections—then think about what colors will help cooking feel like less of a chore.

Kitchen Color Scheme #1: Orange and Purple

It’s unexpected, but this color scheme inarguably works. The burnt orange fills the room with a homey warmth, perfect for creating a relaxed space for the family to sit around and chat or play games (or eat, of course), while the purple keeps it from feeling too garish. Both shades are a little muted, which helps them work together, and the purple, orange, and white tilework and rug make them feel like an obvious pairing.

Kitchen Color Scheme #2: Shades of Gray

The varied shades of gray in this monochromatic kitchen feel super sophisticated, especially with the gray-veined marble counters and backsplash and pops of gold accents introducing a some different textures. The wall color is similar to Benjamin Moore’s 2019 Color of the Year, but the cabinets definitely steal the show. Plus, cabinets like these can mesh with a range of colors, so a kitchen paint color change won’t disrupt the whole room.

Kitchen Color Scheme #3: Chartreuse

Several shades of green pop up in this cheerful kitchen, but it’s the chartreuse tiles on the wall that really shine. Floor tiles and barstools in the same color family help coordinate the room. White—in the ceiling, trim, cabinetry, and countertops—plays a central role in helping the space feel light and bright, but colorful crockery and warm wood shelving prevent anyone from calling this one an all-white kitchen.

Kitchen Color Scheme #4: Pink and Green

Another unexpected color pairing, this one works thanks to a careful balancing act. The forest green cabinets and blush pink wall paint are separate by a stretch of neutral white, plus a literal physical barrier in the long wood shelf. Putting the darker color on the bottom helps anchor the space, allowing the light pink to feel bright but not bland or washed-out.

Kitchen Color Scheme #5: Blue for Days

Blue is a perennial favorite paint color for bedrooms and bathrooms, and this playful kitchen proves it works well in cookspaces, too. Navy lower cabinets lower the gaze, which helps the ceiling feel higher and the whole space feel bigger and brighter; solid white trim and cabinetry break up the geometric wallpaper, making the busy pattern feel visually manageable.

Kitchen Color Scheme #6: All White

There had to be at least one all-white kitchen color scheme, right? White kitchens have a certain glamour about them, and though the look has lost some of its sky-high popularity, it’s still appealing. In this space, a matte white on the cabinets helps distinguish them from the cooler walls and glossy subway tiles. Black hardware pops against the white, and the wood center island serves as the warm focal point of the room.