Adding a backsplash behind your stove is a great way to protect your walls from grease splatters and food stains. Choosing the right material is key to creating a backsplash that is not only functional but stylish. There are several excellent options to consider for your kitchen backsplash.
Tile is one of the most popular choices for kitchen backsplashes. It is durable, easy to clean, and comes in a wide variety of styles, colors, shapes, and textures. Ceramic and porcelain tile are top choices as they resist moisture, heat, and stains.
Glass tile is another great option that provides a glossy, elegant look. Opt for textured glass tile to help hide fingerprints and smudges. Glass tile comes in various colors and can create a vibrant or more neutral backsplash.
Stone tile like granite, marble, or slate also makes an excellent backsplash. It offers natural beauty and luxury. Stone is very durable but more prone to staining than ceramic or porcelain. Be sure to seal stone tile before installation.
Metal tile is a contemporary option, available in materials like stainless steel, copper, and aluminum. Metallic backsplashes have an industrial, modern appeal. Keep in mind metal will show fingerprints. Combining metal tile with glass tile can provide contrast.
A stone slab backsplash brings natural drama to the kitchen. Granite, marble, and soapstone are popular choices that give an upscale, Old World feel. Stone slabs come in unique natural patterns and colors that can become the focal point.
Soapstone is naturally heat-resistant, making it ideal behind a stove. Its soft gray color has rustic charm. Marble provides elegant veining though can be prone to etching from acids. Durable granite resists heat and scratches. All stone slabs require sealing to prevent staining.
For a sleek contemporary look, metal backsplash panels offer stylish options. Stainless steel, copper, and aluminum panels come in various finishes from glossy and reflective to brushed and muted. Perforated panels provide visual depth.
Stainless steel is the most popular choice, providing a modern, professional kitchen look. It easily wipes clean and resists heat and stains. Opt for a brushed or textured finish to hide fingerprints.
Copper brings warmth and luxury with its distinctive orange-toned patina finish. Over time the patina darkens. Pre-patinated copper provides that aged look instantly.
Aluminum panels offer high shine and contemporary styling. They are lightweight yet durable and low maintenance. Consider stamped or perforated patterns to add visual appeal.
Paint provides a simple and budget-friendly backsplash solution. With the latest paint options, you can easily create a washable, heat-resistant surface. Specialty high-heat paints allow you to paint directly onto drywall above the stove.
Opt for matte finishes rather than glossy to help disguise grease splatters. Eggshell or semi-gloss have enough sheen to wipe clean easily. Darker colors like deep greens, navy blues, or charcoal grays do a great job camouflaging cooking stains.
Be sure to prep and prime the wall properly before painting. High-adhesion primer creates a surface ready for the topcoat. Caulk all seams for the smoothest finish. An accent wall in a bold color makes a stylish statement.
High-pressure laminate (HPL) panels offer the look of upscale materials like granite, marble, or stainless steel at a more affordable price. Easy-to-install panels are an ideal DIY backsplash project.
HPL panels are about 1/8-inch thick and attach right to drywall using construction adhesive. Look for beveled-edge panels to mimic the appearance of tile. Matching caulk creates seamless joints.
Laminate provides good heat and stain resistance. There are hundreds of patterns and colors to match any kitchen style from natural stone and concrete looks to solid colors and wood grains. Or opt for a metallic finish like stainless, bronze, or copper.
Mosaic tile backsplashes provide visual impact with their artistic, multi-colored patterns. Tiny individual tiles are mounted in a mesh sheet for quick installation. Mosaics come in ceramic, porcelain, glass, and natural stone.
Opt for mosaic sheets where tiles are set in an interlocking brick pattern. This style creates a more seamless look than traditional grids. Mini subway tile mosaics have a classic feel. Penny tile round mosaics offer pleasing design options.
Stone mosaics bring natural beauty and texture but require more maintenance than ceramic or glass. Metal mosaic add contemporary dazzle. Mixing materials like glass and ceramic or stone and metal can build striking combinations.
Subway tile is a popular choice for backsplashes of all kinds, including behind the stove. These rectangular ceramic tiles have beveled edges that give the look of grout lines when installed with small joints. The bricks lay in a running bond pattern.
The 3 by 6-inch size is the classic subway look but smaller sizes like 1 by 4 inches work well. Pair white subway tile with light grout for a clean, bright look or opt for boldly colored or handmade artisan tiles.
Subway tile is very affordable and easy to install. Its smooth surface camouflages grease spatters. Subway tile backsplashes have versatility to fit both traditional and contemporary kitchen designs. They provide a crisp, structured look when installed in a straight layout.
Wood offers warmth and texture as a backsplash material. Wood backsplashes bring natural beauty to both rustic and modern kitchens. Thin planks of maple, oak, or chic bamboo install right over existing walls.
Use extra-thin 1⁄4 inch planks to create a sleek contemporary look. For a more substantial handcrafted appearance, install tongue-and-groove planks. Wood backsplashes work especially well paired with mosaic, marble, or metal tiles.
Opt for woods with low porosity that resist moisture and stains. Penetrating oil finishes that can handle heat work best. Coating the wood with polyurethane makes for easy cleaning from spatters and splatters. Use light colors to disguise cooking stains.
Beadboard offers cottage charm and a lightweight backsplash option. It installs right over drywall with construction adhesive. You can paint it any color you like and easily remove it later. Traditional beadboard has a tongue-and-groove design with vertical grooves across the panels.
For a more modern look, opt for Shaker-style beadboard with horizontal panels and thin wood trim between them. Craftsman-style boards have thicker wood accent lines. Create interest by installing the boards diagonally or mixing beadboard with wood planks.
Painted beadboard backsplashes are economical choices. Opt for high-quality pre-primed boards and use semi-gloss for washability. Whites, light blues, and pale greens keep the cottage appeal. Or go bold with navy, black, or charcoal gray.
Glass tile brings gleaming shine, depth, and dazzle to backsplashes. The reflective surface picks up colors and light beautifully. Glass tiles come in a vast array of colors, styles, and degrees of opacity. Combining glass with other tile materials like ceramic, metal, or stone allows for stunning combinations.
Clear glass tile provides brilliant shine and illumination but shows grout lines distinctly. Back-painting the tiles with a colored topcoat conceals grout. Etched glass softens the reflective quality.
Iridescent glass changes color in different lighting conditions, providing visual intrigue. These glass tiles pair beautifully with metal and stone mosaics as accents.
Sea glass tile has a weathered, satin appearance, available in soft hues like sea green, blue, and white. It has a vintage, beachy look that creates a soothing ambiance.
Opaque glass tile comes in vivid solid colors and has a frosted matte finish that hides fingerprints. The color stays true rather than changing with lighting.
Natural Stone Tiles
If you love the inherent beauty of natural materials, stone tiles make an exceptional backsplash choice. Granite, marble, travertine, slate, and limestone come in a diverse range of colors and patterns that add organic texture.
Stone tiles exhibit natural variation and veining that brings life to the kitchen. Pairing stone with ceramic tile, glass tile, or metal tile accents can create stylish combinations. Stone tiles work well in both traditional farmhouse and modern kitchens.
Stone does require sealing to prevent staining and etching. Granite is one of the most durable and low maintenance stones. Travertine has a rustic, Old World appeal but needs extra sealing. Honed marble and limestone offer subtle elegance.
Patterned & Handmade Tile
Unique handcrafted and patterned tile allows you to personalize your backsplash into a work of art. Bold patterns and vibrant colors establish a signature style. Intricately patterned tiles showcase fine craftsmanship.
Moroccan tiles offer ornate appeal with geometric and floral motifs in vivid colors. Cuban and Spanish design tiles create artistic impact. Patterned cement tiles provide graphic pops of color.
Terra cotta tiles are handmade, so no two are exactly alike, giving a one-of-a-kind look. The natural reddish-brown clay color has rustic warmth. The tiles can be painted any color.
Hand-painted tiles designed as murals allow you to incorporate special imagery or words meaningful to you. Turn your backsplash into a focal feature.
Faux brick panels recreate the charming look of a brick backsplash without the masonry work. Brick veneer panels come in both traditional reds and more modern whites and grays. You can also find faux stacked stone panels for natural texture without the weight.
Peel-and-stick brick panels make installation a breeze. More durable PVC panels click together like laminate flooring and are removable. Foam brick panels are lightweight and easy to cut and shape as needed. Look for panels with beveled edges for a realistic stacked brick appearance.
Painted brick patterns or wallpaper murals offer temporary options. Combine brick with wood shelves or trim and accessorize with vintage finds for farmhouse character. Faux brick cleverly adds the coziness of a masonry wall without the cost.
Reclaimed wood shiplap has undeniable rustic appeal as a backsplash. The prominent horizontal seams and varying imperfections create natural texture and dimension. Shiplap offers the warmth and charm of wood with a clean-lined modern edge.
The planks install similarly to beadboard but with wider boards and more visible joints. Opt for kiln-dried pine, cedar, or oak boards for durability and moisture resistance. Use raw wood for a rustic cabin look or painted white for crisp farmhouse charm.
Install boards horizontally and trim out the edges for a seamless look. Pair shiplap with zinc or copper accents and industrial pendant lighting for contemporary style. The white-washed coastal vibe works beautifully in a cottage kitchen.
Concrete & Faux Concrete
Concrete backsplashes provide cool modern style with an earthy, organic look. Stained and stamped concrete mimic materials like wood grain, stones, marble, and granite. Concrete resists heat, stains, and moisture.
For a smooth finish, use thin precast concrete panels in soft gray. Concrete with aggregate has texture from stones and pebbles. Concrete tiles come in an array of geometric shapes and vivid colors for a striking impact.
Faux concrete options recreate the cool industrial look with lightweight materials engineered for walls. Foam panels can be cut and shaped easily. Faux concrete laminate boards install with adhesive and resist stains and moisture.
Concrete adds an urban loft vibe to contemporary kitchens. Combine with wood or metal accents for an eclectic mix of materials. Concrete’s neutral hues work in any color scheme as an earthy backdrop.
Make a bold statement by using wallpaper as your backsplash. From floral prints to geometric patterns, wallpaper options range from traditional to cutting edge contemporary. Self-adhesive papers make installation a breeze.
For a accent wall effect, create a wallpaper backsplash on a single wall or just above the stove. Pairing vivid patterned papers with solid cabinets and countertops prevents visual overwhelm. Arrange patterned and textured 3D papers to create artistic designs.
Opt for vinyl-coated, pre-pasted papers that resist moisture and can handle some heat exposure. Take care when cleaning to prevent abrasion. Change up your backsplash easily by switching wallpaper out when your style changes. Add an artistic focal point with one-of-a-kind wallpaper.
Reflective mirror tiles take backsplashes from basic to brilliant. They add light, depth, and the illusion of expanded space. Frameless mirror tiles create uninterrupted sparkle. Stylish beveled-edge tiles provide shape and dimension.
Mirror tiles have an ultra-contemporary vibe. Pair them with sleek surfaces like glass and metal. Contrast cool mirrors with warm wood accents. Using mirror tiles sparingly as accents creates striking focal points, like behind the stove.
The reflective quality of mirror makes a small kitchen feel more spacious. Mirror tile backsplashes also provide a practical way to check your appearance on your way out the door! Keep surfaces streak-free with routine cleaning.
Innovative synthetic materials like richly patterned phenolic resin and acrylic panels provide cutting edge options for statement backsplashes. These engineered composites are durable, moisture resistant, and easy to install and maintain.
Phenolic resin panels consist of resin-saturated decorative paper fused between two layers of melamine resin. This creates durable, scratch resistant, and stain-proof panels perfect for backsplashes. Phenolic panels come in wood grains, solid colors, and graphic patterns.
Acrylic panels offer transparent, translucent, or solid options for stunning backsplashes. Seamless acrylic sheets install right over existing walls. Colorful cast acrylic panels fit together like puzzles. Acrylic makes a design statement.
Synthetics pair well with stone, metal, and wood accents. They bring bohemian flair to eclectic spaces. Clean simply with mild detergent and no abrasives. Synthetics withstand heat and moisture beautifully.
Questions and Answers
What is the most popular backsplash tile?
The most popular backsplash tile is classic white subway tile. The clean, structured look works with any kitchen style from traditional to modern. White subway tiles with minimal grout lines disguise cooking spatters for a maintenance-free backsplash.
What is the most durable material for behind a stove?
Stone is generally the most durable backsplash material for high heat and grease exposure behind a stove. Materials like granite, slate, and soapstone naturally resist heat, moisture, and stains. Ceramic and porcelain tiles are also very durable choices. Stainless steel offers sleek durability.
What is a budget-friendly backsplash option?
Painted drywall or laminate panels offer affordable backsplash options. High-quality specialty paints create a washable, heat-resistant wall above your stove. Many laminate panels mimic pricier materials like stainless steel or ceramic tile at a fraction of the cost.
What gives a kitchen backsplash a modern look?
Sleek metal backsplashes like stainless steel, or patterned mosaic glass or ceramic tiles give a contemporary look. Large-format porcelain slabs, synthetic materials like resin or acrylic panels, and glass tiles provide modern style. Avoid ornate textures and traditional motifs.
How can I make a small kitchen look bigger?
Using reflective surfaces like a mirror or stainless steel backsplash helps make a small kitchen look more spacious. Opt for smaller tile sizes to avoid overwhelming the space. Light, neutral colors keep things airy. Avoid dark grout lines that chop up the area. Extending backsplash tiles to the ceiling draws the eye up for an illusion of height.
The backsplash behind your stove sees the most heat, grease, moisture, and activity. Choosing the right material is key to creating a functional and beautiful accent wall that protects your kitchen. Tile, stone, metal, and glass are go-to options for their durability, easy care, and stylish look.
Bring your own unique style to life with handmade artisan tiles, synthetic panels, or wallpaper. Modern metallics or rustic shiplap boards make design statements. A mosaic pattern or colorful hand-painted tile turns the backsplash into a work of art. With this wide range of excellent materials, you can find the perfect backsplash solution.