What Backsplash Goes Best with Butcher Block Countertops?

Butcher block countertops can add beautiful warmth and texture to any kitchen. However, choosing the right backsplash to go with butcher block countertops is important to bring the whole look together. Here is an in-depth guide on picking the best backsplash for butcher block countertops.


Butcher block countertops made of wood inherently have a rustic, traditional vibe. When pairing them with the right backsplash, you can enhance that aesthetic beautifully. The backsplash and countertop will be right next to each other, so you want materials and colors that complement each other.

It’s also important to consider practical factors like moisture resistance and ease of cleaning. The backsplash sees a lot of action in a kitchen from splatters and spills. You’ll want a material that can stand up to regular use and cleaning.

By thoughtfully choosing a backsplash, you can create a cohesive, eye-catching look that suits your personal style. Let’s explore some of the best backsplash options to beautifully match butcher block countertops.

Matching Wood Backsplash

One classic option is to extend the wood butcher block material right up the wall as a backsplash. This gives a seamless, uniform look since the countertop and backsplash are crafted from the same wood. It creates the rustic, cabin-like style often associated with butcher block counters.

The wood backsplash can be made from the same type of wood and finish as the butcher block. For example, oak countertops would pair nicely with an oak backsplash. Going for woodgrain that matches or complements the countertop is key to pulling off this look.


  • Uniform, seamless appearance since backsplash is the same material as countertop
  • Reinforces rustic, traditional style
  • Provides additional prep space and visual interest


  • More expensive than tile or other backsplash materials
  • Wood requires sealing to stand up to moisture and splatters
  • Darker wood may show dust, dirt and grease more readily

Subway Tile Backsplash

Simple white subway tiles are a popular choice to pair with butcher block counters. The tiles’ clean lines provide an elegant contrast to the wood’s grain and texture. Beveled subway tiles can add extra visual appeal.

Laying the subway tiles in a classic brickwork pattern or herringbone look complements the linearity of the countertop. For a farmhouse style, opt for larger 6×6 inch or 4×8 inch subway tiles. Smaller 3×6 inch tiles create more intricate patterns.


  • Classic, versatile look
  • Affordable and easy to install
  • Creates crisp, clean contrast with wood countertop
  • Moisture-resistant and durable


  • Lacks rustic charm of wood backsplash
  • Grout lines may show stains over time
  • Pattern can compete with visual interest of butcher block

Stone Backsplash

Natural stone like marble, travertine, or slate is another excellent backsplash choice with butcher block. The inherent variation and texture of stone pairs beautifully with the wood countertop.

Lighter marbles with grey veining are especially fitting for achieving a chic, elegant look. Darker varieties like black granite can make more of a statement. Stone mosaic tile provides a nice way to incorporate stone in a unique lay out.


  • Natural material pairs well with wood aesthetic
  • Adds visual interest and dimension
  • Durable, moisture-resistant, and easily cleaned
  • Luxurious, upscale look


  • Stone is more expensive than ceramic tile
  • Porous natural stone requires sealing
  • Some stones like marble stain more readily

Stainless Steel Backsplash

For a sleek, modern contrast to warm wood counters, a stainless steel backsplash is an eye-catching option. Brushed or polished stainless steel makes a bold style statement. It also provides a completely seamless, easy-to-clean surface.


  • Sleek, contemporary look
  • Provides greatest moisture and impact resistance
  • Super easy to keep clean
  • Industrial vibe pairs well with butcher block


  • Expensive material and installation
  • Shows fingerprints readily
  • Very bold, stark look not for everyone

Glass Tile Backsplash

Glass tile backsplashes offer gorgeous light reflection and shine to balance out the matte look of butcher block. They come in a huge array of colors, finishes, and patterns to mix and match.

Small glass mosaic tiles in subtle neutral tones work well for a clean, elegant glass backsplash. Or make it more vibrant with multicolored glass tiles and metallic accents. The translucency and sheen of glass tile beautifully catch the light.


  • Light-reflecting surface brightens up kitchen
  • Myriad color and pattern options
  • Adds a contemporary vibe
  • Resilient and easy to clean


  • Glass lacks the texture of stone or wood
  • Grout lines can get grungy looking over time
  • Patterns may compete visually with butcher block

Rustic Brick or Stone Veneer Backsplash

For a charming cottage style kitchen, brick or faux stone backsplash tiles complement butcher block wonderfully. Handmade ceramic tiles that mimic old weathered brick or natural stone create texture and warmth.

Brick and stone styles come in an array of stacked bond patterns, earthy red/brown/grey colors, and varied dimensions. Mixing tile shapes and sizes for an irregular look enhances the rustic vibe. Wavy brick tiles or distressed stone finishes add even more charm.


  • Rustic, artisanal look pairs perfectly with wood
  • Brick and stone patterns echo butcher block grain
  • Durable and moisture-resistant
  • Warms up sleek kitchens


  • Rustic look not for everyone
  • Grout lines may get dirty over time
  • Ceramic lacks texture of real reclaimed wood/brick

Final Thoughts

Butcher block countertops offer a wonderful chance to add wood’s warmth to any kitchen design. Choosing a backsplash that complements the natural beauty of the wood grain is key to creating a cohesive look.

Options like matching wood planks, classic subway tile, natural stone, or rustic brick will beautifully match the aesthetic of butcher block. Consider the overall style you want for your kitchen, along with practical factors like budget, ease of cleaning, and moisture resistance.

With the right backsplash pairing, you can accentuate the charm of butcher block for a unique, eye-catching kitchen design full of style and character.

Frequently Asked Questions

What backsplash goes best with light and dark butcher block countertops?

For light-colored butcher block, white subway tile, marble, and glass tile all pair nicely and help reflect more light. For dark wood, opt for contrast with a light stone or tile backsplash. Dark grout lines also blend in better against dark countertops.

Do you need to seal a wood backsplash with butcher block counters?

Yes, sealing a wood backsplash is highly recommended, just like sealing the butcher block counters. The sealant protects the wood from moisture damage and makes the surface easier to clean and maintain. Reapply sealer yearly.

What about a metal tin backsplash with butcher block counters?

Tin backsplashes can look amazing with butcher block! The rustic, reclaimed appearance of salvaged tin complements the wood beautifully. Copper and galvanized metal also pair well. Just clean and seal metal properly.

Can you do a patterned tile backsplash with butcher block?

Definitely! Honed stone mosaic, handmade ceramic tile, or glass tile with patterns and textures look fantastic with butcher block counters. Just be selective – small-scale intricate patterns tend to complement the wood best. Avoid anything too overpowering.

What grout color should you use with butcher block counters?

For subway tile, white or light grey grout suits butcher block well. With stone tiles, match the grout to the tile color. Dark epoxy grout also pairs nicely with both light and dark wood counters as it recedes into the background.