What Backsplash Goes with Busy Granite

Selecting the right backsplash to pair with busy granite countertops can be a tricky design dilemma. Granite surfaces with bold, variegated patterns or prominent veining can easily clash with the wrong backsplash tile. The key is finding a backsplash that complements the granite rather than competes with it visually. Here are some of the best backsplash options to beautifully accentuate your busy granite countertops.

What to Consider with Busy Granite

When dealing with a granite pattern that’s on the busier end of the spectrum, it’s important to think about the interplay of colors, textures, and scales between the countertop and backsplash. Here are some key considerations:

  • Color tones – Select a backsplash containing some of the same hues found in the granite. This helps the two elements complement each other through color harmony.
  • Visual weight – Balance a heavy granite look with a lighter, more subtle backsplash tile. Conversely, pair lighter granite colors with a weightier backsplash material.
  • Repeating colors – Use a backsplash that picks up on some of the same accents colors that are repeated throughout the granite veins and movement.
  • Texture – Combining polished granite with a backsplash that has some surface texture can make for appealing visual contrast.
  • Pattern scale – The scale of the backsplash design needs to harmonize with the general pattern size and visual weight of the granite.

Best Backsplash Options for Busy Granite

Taking into account the above considerations, here are some excellent backsplash tile possibilities to team up with elaborately patterned granite:

Solid Glass, Ceramic or Natural Stone Tiles

The clean look of solid colored glass, ceramic or natural stone tiles in glossy or matte finishes can provide the perfect subtle complement to ornate granite. Choose a color that reflects one of the tones featured in the granite. Darker shades like a deep aqua blue or emerald green glass can be striking complements to cream and tan granites with black and brown veining. For black and gray granites, a muted cool gray tile backsplash can add polished balance. The sleek simplicity of solid tile allows the granite to take center stage.

Solid blue glass subway tile backsplash complementing busy granite countertops

Stone Mosaics

Small stone tiles made of marble, travertine or slate arranged in mosaic patterns can make for gorgeous backsplash pairings with elaborately patterned granite. The earthy texture and muted color blends of stone mosaics bring out the natural beauty of granite’s markings in a more subtle way. Keep the mosaic scale small so it doesn’t compete with the granite visuals. Simple spotted patterns in soft neutrals work especially well.

Marble mosaic backsplash with cream granite countertop

Classic Subway Tile

Classic white 3×6 subway tiles offer a timeless, clean-lined look that allows the beauty of the granite to take center stage. Pairing a busy stone surface with the understated elegance of subway tiles helps balance the look visually. For added interest, stagger the tiles in a brickwork pattern or consider subway tiles with gray grout lines for a more modern vibe.

White subway tile kitchen backsplash with busy granite countertop

Moroccan-Style and Handmade Tiles

Tiles with colorful Moroccan-inspired patterns or handmade, artisanal designs with visible veining and texture can make for chic complement to busy granites. These eye-catching tiles have enough going on visually to pair beautifully with granite full of prominent markings. Just be sure the overall color scheme goes well together.

Moroccan tile backsplash paired with granite countertop

Mixed Natural Stone

Combining an array of complementary natural stones, like travertine, limestone and slate, can allow you to reflect some of the colors and visuals in the granite. This eclectic look enables you to pull different accent hues from the granite into the backsplash design itself. A mix of surface finishes – glossy tiles contrasting with rough ones – also complements granite nicely.

Mixed natural stone backsplash with granite countertop

Avoiding Clashing Patterns

To ensure your backsplash complements busy granite instead of clashing with it visually, some patterns are best avoided:

  • Super busy mosaics with multi-colored small tiles
  • Large-scale graphic prints that compete with the granite
  • Anything with strong conflicting colors or textures
  • Matching a bold granite with an equally bold backsplash

The idea is to select a backsplash with enough visual interest to be eye-catching but not so busy that it overpowers the granite.

Balancing Dark Granite Colors

For homeowners who prefer very dark, bold granite surfaces with intense blacks, browns, reds or greens, be especially careful that the backsplash doesn’t become too overpowering. Dark granites stand out, so you often want your backsplash tile to take a subtler supporting role.

Some good options for complementing dark granites include:

  • Solid white, gray or very light-colored tiles
  • Clear glass, frosted glass or mirror tiles
  • Dark granite-colored ceramic or porcelain tiles
  • Thin brick tiles in charcoal gray or light earth tones
  • White marble or light limestone mosaics

What Backsplash Goes with Black Granite?

Black granite with bright white veins and speckles is a popular bold choice for kitchen surfaces. Many homeowners find it tricky deciding what backsplash goes well with black granite countertops. Here are some stylish options:

  • White subway tiles with light gray grout lines
  • Gray, white and black patterned mosaic tiles
  • Mirrored tiles or silver-colored metal glass mosaics
  • White marble mosaics with gray veining
  • Solid tiles in glossy black, dark charcoal or bold teal
White subway tile backsplash with black granite countertop

What Backsplash for Uba Tuba Granite?

The beautiful Uba Tuba granite pattern features deep, dark greens and blacks contrasted with flecks of shimmering gold. For backsplashes that enhance Uba Tuba granite, consider:

  • Light green or sage glass subway tiles
  • Metallic gold, silver or copper glass mosaics
  • Multicolored glass tiles in dark shades of blue, green and gray
  • White marble or white crackled glass tiles
Sage green glass subway tile backsplash with Uba Tuba granite counters

What Tile Goes Good with New Caledonia Granite?

New Caledonia granite’s luxurious look combines blacks, taupes, browns, creams, and gray tones with accents of silver and gold. For backsplash options try:

  • Gray marble or travertine subway tiles
  • White crackled glass tiles
  • Natural stone mosaics in dark neutrals
  • Mirror tiles with an antique patina
White granite backsplash with New Caledonia granite countertop

What Backsplash Goes Well with Tan Brown Granite?

Light brown granites with tan hues and dark veining or spots coordinate beautifully with backsplashes that pick up on those tones. Consider warm materials like:

  • Cream or light brown stone or ceramic brick tiles
  • Mosaics made from various natural stones in brown, tan and cream
  • White tiles with brown grout lines
  • Multicolored glass tile mixtures reflecting the granite colors


The best backsplash for busy granite will help accentuate the granite’s assets instead of competing with its captivating visuals. Whether you select glass, ceramic, porcelain, natural stone or metal backsplash tiles, concentrate on finding colors, textures and scales that complement the granite design. Then you can enjoy a kitchen backsplash and countertop pairing that makes both elements shine.