When it comes to the kitchen, some things are timeless – you want it to be clean, you want it to be functional and you want it to be comfortable. With all that as a given, however, every year brings a new mix of kitchen ideas to make your space its most stylish. Whether you’re dreaming of a sleek new kitchen or you’re looking for some design inspo for a little spruce up, we’ve rounded up 15 of the top kitchen trends for 2021.
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Published September 24, 2020, Updated April 4, 2021
Quality Quartz Countertops
While the look of marble countertops is still a top kitchen trend, quartz counters are an increasingly popular alternative. Why? They offer a contemporary, upscale look (as Jonathan and Drew Scott demonstrated with the white quartz countertops in this Property Brothers: Forever Home kitchen), while also being super durable and easy to care for. And, as Scott McGillivray explains, quartz countertops give you a great return on your investment in a renovation.
The Dark Side
On the opposite end of spectrum, dark kitchen countertops are also trending. From dark, glossy options to deep-toned wood counters, dark countertops contrast well with kitchen cabinets in lighter woods, whites or painted designs.
Go Wall to Wall
Let’s face it: your kitchen is full of stuff. From pantry items to kitchen gadgets, more lived-in kitchens face storage issues. With that in mind, it’s becoming increasingly popular to totally eschew the open shelving or no-uppers trends of years past, in favour of wall-to-wall cabinetry (as Jonathan and Drew Scott showed with a wall of top-to-bottom white kitchen cabinets in this Property Brothers: Forever Home kitchen remodel).
The trend towards minimalist kitchen cabinets – clean-lined and nearly seamless with minimal hardware or touch-release designs – continues to be one of the most popular aesthetics for kitchens.
Islands will always be a popular kitchen trend – if you’ve got the space, a kitchen island increases your prep and storage space will adding extra character to the room – but more and more kitchen designs are including islands with multiple levels. Whether it’s a cantilevered design or an island with different heights on opposing sides, playing with different levels gives you more options for prep space and comfortable seating – and multi-functional spaces are always a big win.
Warm Things Up
As much as we love a clean, cool kitchen, warm colour palettes are definitely making a comeback in the kitchen. From walls to cabinets to backsplashes, wine reds, deep greens and rich browns are heating up in popularity for the kitchen.
With many of us becoming more conscious of our carbon footprint, one of the biggest 2021 kitchen trends is making your kitchen more energy efficient and environmentally friendly. One clear way to achieve this goal? Installing shiny new, energy-efficient windows – like Scott McGillivray did in this Scott’s Vacation House Rules kitchen – enhances the view from your kitchen window while also saving energy in the long run.
Woven Light Fixtures
If you’re looking to add a bit of a breezy, relaxed feel to your kitchen, woven-style light factors are the trend to shine a light on. Made from materials like bamboo and rattan, light-hued woven pendant lights add a contemporary, natural vibes to the space – as shown in this Save My Reno kitchen update by Sebastian Clovis and Samantha Pynn.
The culmination of a few kitchen trends (like the movement towards warmer colour palettes and heightened eco-awareness in kitchen design), more and more people are finding ways to use reclaimed wood in the kitchen. Reclaimed wood adds a rustic touch, but it can also be quite contemporary if it’s used in modern kitchen cabinet designs.
If tiny tiles aren’t your taste, the slab backsplash trend is a solid choice for your kitchen. One-piece backsplashes in materials like marble or metal adds a clean, seamless look with a lot of stylish drama.
Pops of Personality
Another emerging kitchen trend is all about bring some personality to your prep space via patterned or textured backsplash tiles. As Jonathan and Drew Scott showed with this Property Brothers: Forever Home, choosing a backsplash with colour and personality lends instant character to an otherwise neutral space.
If you want to incorporate a little gloss into your kitchen design this year, a high-shine backsplash is the way to go. From glossy finishes to glass or mirrors, backsplashes are the perfect place to play with shine.
Looking for Local
From checking out the wares at a neighbourhood vintage or antique store to supporting local plant stores, 2020 has made many of us think about where we source things for our home. With that in mind, a 2021 kitchen trend to consider is looking to local retailers, suppliers and designers when renovating the room.
Small changes can make a big impact when it comes to your cooking space, and kitchen faucets that go beyond functional – from contemporary, colorblocked designs to unusual metallics to art-inspired pieces – can change up the look and flow of your kitchen.
Raising the Bar
Modern and minimalist? Clean-lined kitchen designs are embracing the sleek, futuristic vibes of hanging bar-style pendant lights – which work especially well over a kitchen island.