Kitchen Floor Buying Guide

The floor lays the groundwork for style and function in your kitchen. Think about your lifestyle and cost when choosing the right surface for you.
Old World Kitchen Design by Suzanne Furst

Old World Kitchen Design by Suzanne Furst

These wood floors with inlayed slate tile provide durability along with an air of sophistication.

Photo by: Designer, Suzanne Furst

Designer, Suzanne Furst

These wood floors with inlayed slate tile provide durability along with an air of sophistication.

By: Kim Hildenbrand

The kitchen is the hub of your home, where you cook family meals and gather for parties. The floors in this busy spot must withstand heavy foot traffic, dropped dishes, and spills galore. But they also must indulge your craving for style. How to choose? Get started with these considerations.

Lifestyle. At home, you're the star of your own cooking show—and chances are, sauce gets spilled, silverware gets dropped, and spouses, kids, and pets check in often. It's important to choose floors that stand up to this type of wear and tear. And if you have young children or plan to stick around for years, nonslip floors are important for safety.

Your Style Sense. Choose floors that complement your kitchen, whether it's rustic and country-style or cutting-edge contemporary. Consider the kitchen's size, as well as existing colors, textures, and patterns. Should the large surface underfoot serve as a neutral backdrop or a vivid focal point?

Gorgeous Kitchen Floors

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Stylish Inlaid Flooring

According to the National Kitchen & Bath Association, inlaid flooring is a growing trend in kitchen design. This kitchen's wood floors with inlayed slate tile provide durability and complement the room's sophisticated Old Word design. Design by Suzanne Furst of Suzanne Furst Interiors. 

Photo By: Designer, Suzanne Furst

Eco-Friendly Cork Flooring

Another hot trend in kitchen flooring, cork is an environmentally friendly option that reduces noise and is durable and soft underfoot, making it ideal for homeowners who spend much of their time in the kitchen. This kitchen's warm cork flooring complements the cabinets and the glass tile backsplash. Design by Amy Bubier of AB Design Elements LLC. 

Photo By: Designer, Amy Bubier

Timeless Wood Flooring

Wood flooring adds warmth and classic appeal to this cozy kitchen. Soft underfoot, wood floors are a great feature for chefs who spend a lot of time on their feet. Design by Elizabeth Rosensteel of Elizabeth A. Rosensteel Design. 

Photo By: Designer, Elizabeth Rosensteel

Trendy Bamboo Flooring

A hot trend for cutting-edge kitchens, bamboo floors are harder than many types of wood and come in a variety of sizes, colors, patterns and textures. Honey-colored woven bamboo floors add contemporary flair in the kitchen. Image courtesy of EcoTimber. 

Practical Ceramic Tile Flooring

Perfect for busy kitchens, tile withstands heavy foot traffic and water, and it doesn't absorb odors or bacteria. Ceramic is easy to install but slightly more prone to damage than porcelain. An affordable alternative to travertine, this ceramic tile floor features enhanced realism due to a special digital imaging process. Image courtesy of Mohawk Flooring. 

Natural Stone Tile Flooring

Durable and low-maintenance, natural stone tile flooring adds a high-end look and provides a surface that can handle the wear and tear of a busy kitchen. Image courtesy of Burgin Construction. 

Resilient Porcelain Tile Flooring

Made from sands and minerals, porcelain tile is harder and denser than ceramic tile and is water resistant, but it's harder to install. This rich beige porcelain tile features natural color variations and realistic textures. The large-format tiles are less busy, causing the kitchen to appear larger. Image courtesy of Mannington Mills, Inc. 

Low-Cost Linoleum Flooring

Linoleum flooring is an inexpensive option that is available in many styles and colors and can be arranged in unique patterns to complement your kitchen's design. Linoleum is inherently antibacterial and antistatic, making it hygienic and easy to clean. Image courtesy of Forbo. 

Photo By: NKBA

Durable Laminate Flooring

Another low-cost option, laminate flooring is available in styles that mimic hardwood, stone and marble. The surface resists stains and scratches and is easy to clean. Image courtesy of Armstrong Laminate Floors. 

Photo By: Armstrong

Versatile Vinyl Flooring

Vinyl comes in a wide range of colors and patterns that mimic hardwood, ceramic and stone. Unlike the dated floors of past generations, today's vinyl features better textures and colors for a more realistic appearance, thanks to improvements in the rotogravure (engraving) process for the surface. Crisp black-and-white checkerboard floors bring an updated vintage vibe to this kitchen. Image courtesy of Armstrong. 

Comfort. If you spend hours on your feet slicing, dicing, and stirring consider floors with a bit of softness and resilience. Tile floors, for instance, can be uncomfortable to stand on for long periods. Wood is better for reducing leg fatigue. And resilient floors, with their elasticity, are the most comfortable for feet. Whatever you choose, a soft mat or rug can add comfort as well.

Ease of Cleaning. Between food spills and tracked-in dirt, kitchen floors can get pretty grimy. To minimize time spent on maintenance, choose a material that's easy to clean, water resistant, and not prone to staining.

Cost. If you're planning a remodel, your budget is probably divvied among countertops, cabinetry, lighting fixtures, and more. Where does flooring fit in the plan? Once you've determined your flooring budget, measure the kitchen to get an idea of square footage. Remember that additional costs may apply, including underlayment, delivery, installation, and removal and disposal of your previous floor.

Kitchen Flooring Options

Wondering which type of floor you should pick for your kitchen? Check out the following articles to discover the pros, cons and best uses for each of the floor types available.

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Hardwood Flooring in the Kitchen

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