They’re Here: The 2021 Kitchen Color Trends You Need to Know Right Now

Hunker may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story.

Well, look at that: The seemingly unending year that was 2020 has turned into 2021 in the blink of an eye, and it's safe to say that design and color trends are reflecting where we're at right now. A year of stress is now manifesting as colors that can only be described as tranquil — think light ocean blues and nature-inspired greens. Additionally, we've noticed a return to tried-and-true traditional hues that feel simple and unfussy, like classic-as-it-gets gray.

Alternatively, we've also seen an increase in trendy shades that feel like the total opposites of those quiet colors — colors that promote high energy and positivity like bright yellow and light pink. And while homeowners will use these colors in bedrooms, dining rooms, and living rooms (you'll even see some used on exteriors), we predict that they will be the most prevalent in kitchen designs.

If you're jonesing for a new kitchen, and looking for fresh ideas to incorporate into your remodel, pay special consideration to the color palette. If you want to go big or go home, change the color of your kitchen cabinets. Or, if you prefer something a little more subtle, paint a single accent wall in a trending shade. But keep in mind that paint isn't the only tool in your toolbox when it comes to injecting a pop of color into your space — consider a colorful backsplash, dynamic floor tile, patterned wallpaper, or even contrasting countertops.

Ready to get started? Scroll on for the 2021 kitchen color trends that should be at the top of your list.

1. Soothing Blue

Image Credit: Sanford Creative

Who doesn't love a white kitchen? We certainly do, but if you need a change and you're ready to part with the ivory hue, we suggest trying another equally traditional, yet unexpected, neutral: light blue. There's a reason why Aegean Teal is the 2021 Benjamin Moore Color of the Year — it's incredibly calming. Here, a pacifying shade of blue makes an appearance on the backsplash of this small kitchen.

2. Soft Green

Another shade that harkens back to nature, soft, refreshing green is currently the paint color du jour among interior designers. If you need a break from a dark kitchen, a sage, mint, or sea-green tone is a surefire way to freshen up your cook space. You can't go wrong with light green cabinetry, especially when paired with natural wood, as proven here.

3. Classic Gray

Interior design often wraps in the latest kitchen trends, but for you, maybe you'd prefer something a little more timeless. Gray paint comes in a wide range of hues, but if you want to take a page from Pantone's Color of the Year, Ultimate Gray, choose a standard shade of gray that won't go out of style anytime soon. If gray isn't your thing, but you'd still like to embrace a classic, consider navy blue for your kitchen instead.

4. Forest Green

Another 2021 kitchen color trend that's tied to the great outdoors is forest green, and we're more than happy to see it making a home indoors, especially in a modern kitchen. The rich hue will lend depth and drama to any culinary space without overpowering it, as proven by the cabinets seen in this inviting kitchen. Pair with warm design elements such as open shelving, wood countertops, and terra cotta flooring to complete the look.

5. Pale Pink

Yes, pastels can live in a kitchen, too. Pale, whispery pinks look fantastic on the walls, backsplash, or even the cabinets. It's not as intense as love-it-or-hate-it millennial pink — it's definitely a more sophisticated, ageless take on the hue. And you can always temper it with another color, like dark green, à la this dreamy minimalist kitchen design.

6. Vibrant Yellow

When Pantone released its gray-hued Color of the Year, the company released an additional pick: Illuminating, the brightest shade of canary yellow we've ever seen. Yes, it was a surprise, but it seems to be the perfect response to a year filled with less-than-happy moments. You can either go all-in with this hue or include it as part of a broader color scheme. For example, this maximalist kitchen has perfected the look with yellow cabinets, warm accents, stainless steel appliances, and lush greenery.

Shelby Deering is a lifestyle writer who contributes to national magazines and websites, including Country Living, Good Housekeeping, Well+Good, and more. When she's not writing, you'll find her shopping flea markets, hiking, and going for walks with her corgi.

View Work