21 Kitchen Backsplash Ideas for White Cabinets

No kitchen design is complete without a stylish backsplash. When you have white cabinets, a backsplash is a perfect way to add pops of color without overpowering the design. We’ve put together a list of 21 white kitchen backsplash ideas to give your kitchen a fresh makeover.

White Kitchen Backsplashes Ideas

1. Decorative Taupe 

Using neutral colors with white cabinets is the perfect way to prevent your kitchen from feeling sterile and unwelcoming. Taupe is a fantastic complement to white kitchens to add a touch of class. 

Bring your design a step further by choosing a decorative-shaped tile, such as a medallion or diamond design. The size of the space you’re covering will help you choose the right size and shape.

2. Herringbone Pattern

An easy, affordable way to give your white kitchen contrast to prevent looking washed out is to lay the backsplash in a herringbone pattern. You can use standard subway tiles, which come in a range of colors and finishes. 

And because subway tiles come in various sizes, you can pick a size that fits with your kitchen space. Top with colored or white grout to complement the color of your tiles. 

3. Sea Glass Look

Creating a sea glass backsplash can tie together a coastal kitchen. Typical beachy colors go well with white, providing pops of color that won’t be distracting. 

You can make sea glass by breaking up glass bottles or tinted mason jars in shades of seafoam green, turquoise, and blue. Then place the pieces onto a layer of tile adhesive applied to the wall using a notched trowel. 

Editor’s note: Check out this DIY tutorial for more information about making a DIY sea glass backsplash.

4. Neutral Chevron 

If you prefer a more neutral look that offers subtle color contrast to your white cabinets, try a classic chevron pattern, using understated colors like light gray, gold, and white. 

The contrast of colors will create an elegant focal piece with wood counters and brass hardware. 

5. Hexagon Marble

If you’re looking to jump onto the trend wagon, you’ll want to consider a hexagon marble backsplash. This design gives your kitchen a clean, elegant feel that goes great with white.

Many people feel apprehension about DIY installing hexagon marble. But there’s no reason to when you can buy peel and stick tiles, with the hexagon pattern already applied. 

6. Classic Subway Tile

Nothing complements a kitchen backsplash better than classic subway tiles. This style is a signature feature of farmhouse chic, although it can also work with modern, contemporary, and traditional style kitchens. 

Subway tile owes much of its trending popularity to HGTV interior decorator Joanna Gaines. Like the lady, these tiles will never go out of style. Give a touch of color contrast by using gray grout.

7. Gold Grout

If you’re wanting to add some glam to your white kitchen, how about using gold grout over white tiles? Or you can choose tiles with gold flecks. 

Complete your glitzy design with gold hardware and complimentary lighting.

8. Brown Glass

Brown is another neutral color that can add contrast to white cabinets without being loud and overpowering. 

Choosing glass tiles in subtle browns can give your space depth and texture while being simple and understated. 

9. Mod Design

To achieve a mid-century modern design, find tiles with mod designs. Sites like Wayfair or stores like Lowe’s and Home Depot carry multiple designs. 

10. Removable Wallpaper

Installing a backsplash can be expensive and time-consuming. Depending on the look you want, you may have to hire a contractor rather than DIY. If you’re going to give your kitchen a temporary makeover while you’re saving up for the significant expense, try removable wallpaper.

There is a wide variety of textures, colors, and patterns, including some designs that will look like traditional kitchen backsplashes. However, this option wouldn’t be the best option for splash zones. 

11. Adhesive Stick Ons

Not a fan of wallpaper? Adhesive stick-on tiles are the easiest DIY way to create a stunning backsplash. As with regular tiles, you have various shapes, colors, patterns, and materials, including vinyl (most common), glass, stone, or metal. 

There’s no need for tools or tricky installation. Peel the paper off the back and put each piece in place on your wall. The adhesive on the back will keep the tiles in place, even for around water.

12. Grey Retro

Gray is a color that compliments white, no matter what shade you choose. If you want to keep your white kitchen looking airy and bright, gray is the solution you need without the distraction of bright color. 

Picking a retro design in gray is an elegant way to give your kitchen character and a unique feature. You’re sure to be the envy of all your company. 

13. Iridescent Tiles

Iridescent tiles aren’t for everyone, but they’re sure to be a favorite for many who like shimmer and sparkle. This type of tile will have different hues and looks from various angles, giving you a wall that will never get boring.

White iridescent tiles offer a pearly shimmer, while light blue offers subtle colors. Or go bold with a deep blue with pink and purple accents.

14. Matte Blue

Matte blue is a great color to add a soothing color that compliments white cabinets without looking out of place. The matte finish means these tiles won’t have a shiny, glossy surface, allowing for understated pops of color. 

15. Black and White

Black and white is a color combination that never goes out of style. No matter the changing trends of what’s in for backsplashes, one with this color scheme will always shine. There’s no right or wrong way to do these tiles – decorative, checkerboard, or mosaics.

16. Touch of Pink

Choosing pastel colors like light pink provides subtle color to break up an all-white kitchen. Shades like dusty rose or pastel pink offer a soft, warm look. Complete the design with gold hardware and gray walls.

17. Calming Turquoise

Turquoise is another subtle color choice that won’t be over the top but adds more contrast than warm pastels like pink. Pair turquoise tiles with navy blue accents and nickel hardware. 

18. Pebble Look 

Pebble backsplashes can resemble stone pebbles while being made of porcelain or ceramic. These stones look great with white cabinets for a country cottage or rustic feel. 

19. Classic Stone in a Unique Shape

Want to have something different than all your friends and neighbors? Consider classic stone tiles cut into unique shapes, such as leaves, ovals, or long strips.

20. Brick

Brick is a fantastic way to add warmth and texture to a predominately white room. Not all will enjoy this look, but it works well for industrial, European farmhouse, or rustic themes. Bronze accents and stainless steel appliances complete the look. 

21. Fish Scale

For a jaw-dropping factor, choose fish scale tiles. These scallop tiles make a statement that gives character to white cabinets. 

You can get traditional materials like marble cut into rounded tiles that add slight pops of color contrast of gray. 

Factors to Consider

When trying to decide on the perfect tile for your kitchen, consider these factors. Having specific criteria helps you narrow down an overwhelming selection into your ideal match.

Kitchen Size

The size of your kitchen will also play a role in which backsplash you choose. If you have a large kitchen and a tight budget, you may have to play it wise to find a backsplash that’s affordable enough to cover all your space without breaking your pocketbook. 

If you have a large kitchen and high ceilings, you could save time and money by choosing larger-sized backsplashes rather than small ones that will look lost in a massive space. 

Price Point

As with any remodeling job, you’ll want to choose materials that are within your budget. When shopping for a backsplash, a budget helps you narrow down your price range and the suitable materials. 

The great thing about backsplashes is you can find one to find any budget, from high-end luxury materials to budget-friendly options made of imitation materials that look like the real thing.

Other Colors in Kitchen

Another factor to consider when choosing a backsplash is the colors already present in your kitchen. Consider the color of your countertops, flooring, and wall color to ensure you pick an option that will complement your design rather than clash. Or you may also want to consider color-coordinating your backsplash with accent pieces.

Coverage

You’ll also need to decide how much surface area you want to cover with your backsplash. There are two choices you can have for backsplash coverage.

  • Counter to Ceiling

If you use open shelving or decide to nix having upper cabinets, you’ll have a lot of space. Covering the common area above your sink or stove may leave your kitchen looking unfinished. 

A trending design idea is to take your backsplash to the ceiling. This design is fantastic for small kitchens. Given that you’ll cover more space, you’ll need to factor the extra materials into your budget to ensure you pick a design you can afford.

  • To Cabinet

If your kitchen has upper cabinets, you’ll get the best look by running the backsplash from the counter up to the bottom of the upper cabinets. The areas where you’ll do food prep need the most protection from backsplash. 

The space behind your sink, cooktop, and vent hood are top spots that need a backsplash. And stop your design where your cabinets stop or extend the tiles wall to wall.

Editor’s note: Here’s a great article for advice on where to start and stop your backsplash for kitchens.

Play with Color

There are multiple ways to add color to your kitchen to complement white cabinets. Try these three methods to give your space a color that won’t overpower your white kitchen.

  • Grout

Want an easy way to make your backsplash stand out against white cabinets? Consider using colored grout. Most types of backsplash require some material to keep the pieces in place. Instead of leaving the gaps between your backsplash pieces a standard color, try using colored grout. 

  • Tiles

There is a vast selection of tile choices you can use for your kitchen backsplash. Choosing colored tiles is the easiest way to give your kitchen color. The great thing about white cabinets is they go great with plenty of colors. Most people choose a backsplash with patterns or colors to brighten up a white kitchen. If you select white tiles, use colored grout to keep the space from looking too sterile.

  • Paint

No kitchen remodel is complete without having painted walls. While many people may choose to keep white walls with white cabinets, you’re not limited to this neutral design. Giving your walls a contrasting color will help your kitchen feel more aesthetically pleasing. 

White Kitchen Backsplashes Ideas FAQ

Before we wrap out this guide on 21 kitchen backsplash ideas for white cabinets, we put together a short frequently asked questions section. 

What is the best backsplash for a white kitchen?

The best type of backsplash for a white kitchen would be tiles – porcelain, ceramic, or natural stone. This material can be cost-effective or luxury prices, easily DIY’ed, and makes a great statement.

What’s trending in kitchen backsplashes?

Subway tile is a type of timeless backsplash that never goes out of style. Recent trends are seeing the use of larger or smaller-sized subway pieces instead of standard sizes. Another growing trend is using colored subway tiles rather than traditional white. The marble backsplash is another trending design that will never get old and goes excellent with multiple designs. 

And the final backsplash trend is covering the entire area beneath the bottom of your upper cabinets, or a minimum of 18″ without upper cabinets. Or take the design to the ceiling for a true WOW effect.

Should backsplash be lighter or darker than countertop?

The color of your cabinets and countertop will affect what color you should choose for your backsplash. For white cabinets with a light counter, choose a darker backsplash. For darker countertops, your design would look best with a lighter-colored backsplash.

Conclusion

Installing a backsplash is a trending remodel that can give your kitchen an affordable and easy makeover. Choosing the right backsplash is crucial for a put-together kitchen design that’s sure to impress visitors and family members. But picking the wrong one can cause your design to be an epic failure. We’ve provided 21 white kitchen backsplash ideas to get you started.