What Are the Best Paint Colors to Use in a Kitchen?

By Sarah AndersonLast Updated May 27, 2020 7:10:53 PM ET
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For many people, the kitchen is the heart of the home. It's where you start your busy day and where you unwind with a good meal — and maybe a glass of wine — in the evening. It's where you make breakfast for your kids on busy school mornings and where you enjoy dinner with the special people in your life on the weekend. It’s also the spot for finding healthy snacks and comfort foods, depending on your mood. 

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So, obviously your kitchen is a very special room, which means it deserves some very special consideration when it’s time for an upgrade. Choosing the perfect paint color is an ideal starting point — and an important one. While you can obviously select any color you want for your kitchen, HGTV recommends white, gray, blue, green, yellow or red. Let’s take a look at why each color works so well in the most important room in the house.


White

According to HGTV, a white kitchen feels clean, fresh and energizing. The bright look can help wake you up in the morning when the sun starts shining on the white paint, but the neutral color also offers a number of other benefits. First, the color is extremely versatile as part of a color scheme. You can paint your cabinets and other accents almost any color when you have a white backdrop. A white kitchen can also open up a small space, making it feel larger, and it can brighten a dark room that doesn’t see much natural light. 

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Finally, white not only feels clean, but it's easy to see when the walls are dirty, so you can keep the room where you prepare all your food as sanitary as possible. Just don't make the mistake of assuming white is a one-size-fits-all color. You can customize your kitchen even further by choosing a shade of white that has red, yellow, green, blue or other color undertones to warm up or cool down your space.

Red

You may have noticed that many of your favorite restaurants use red paint as part of their decor. That's because this warm color is believed to stimulate the appetite. Cooking is also the color of passion. For this reason, many feel that it's also a wonderful color to paint their own kitchens. 

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Not only does red make a good wall color, but it also pairs well with more neutral colors, like white and gray, which is important if you want to paint your cabinets and other fixtures red. The vibrant color also comes in many shades. For a sleek look, consider a semi-gloss candy apple red, or for a more rustic look, choose a shade of red that has some hints of orange mixed in with it.

Blue or Green

Blue and green are both tranquil, calming colors that are frequently found in nature. Both are good choices for painting a kitchen, especially if your kitchen is a place where you like to relax and spend your downtime. Like red, green and blue come in a variety of shades that you can use as accent colors for your walls, cabinets and other fixtures.

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Keep in mind that darker shades of blue can overpower a room very easily, but they look good in a kitchen with white fixtures. Lighter blues can soften your kitchen and make it feel brighter and bigger. Green shades tend to look good with natural wood cabinets and fixtures.

Yellow

Yellow kitchens tend to feel happy, cheerful and sunny, and according to Real Simple, homes with yellow kitchens even sell for higher prices than those with other colors. The warm color is versatile enough to use in a rustic cottage as well as an industrial condo, and it can really create some excitement in an otherwise boring space. 

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Like red, yellow sees a lot of action in restaurants. These businesses often use yellow because the color is thought to stimulate the appetite and increase the amount of serotonin — the hormone that makes you feel euphoric — in your body.

Gray

If you're bored with white but still want a neutral color, HGTV recommends searching for an appealing shade of gray. Like white, gray pairs well with other colors, allowing you to get creative with cabinets, counters and other fixtures. Besides being one of the most versatile colors you can paint your kitchen, gray can help you bring together various textures, create a clean look and reduce shine and glare on your surfaces.

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