Your Guide to Choosing Kitchen Cabinets

Before you spend a big chunk of your remodel budget on cabinets, make sure you’re choosing wisely!

The right kitchen cabinetry can make or break your kitchen’s functionality and style — not to mention your budget. With so many options, it can be overwhelming to try and choose what’s best for your kitchen, continue reading below for more information on the styles, and types that will help you decide what will work best for you.


Cabinet Door Panel Styles

Flat, shaker or inset? See which of these popular cabinet doors fit with your home’s style.


Slab Panel Cabinet Door: A flat door that essentially looks like a slab of wood, metal or other material. Slab panel cabinet doors are favored by those who prefer sleek, clean designs. They work well for traditional, transitional and even contemporary looks.


Recessed Panel Cabinet Door: The recessed panel door is a flat panel affixed inside a frame constructed with miter or mortise and tenon joints. The resulting appearance has a picture frame-type look and a minimalist, more country or transitional appearance.


Shaker Panel Cabinet Door: An offset of a recessed panel, shaker style is flat paneled doors with rail frames, sturdy construction with quality wood, and utilitarian designs. While the minimal ornamentation and straight lines of Shaker cabinets lend themselves to the modern look, these cabinets also function well in a more traditional kitchen.


Beadboard Panel Cabinet Door: Typically found in a recessed panel, beadboard uses routed beaded details to create a casual country style.


Raised Panel Cabinet Door: The center panel of the door is raised with a profile or contour.  Raised panels generally measure between 1/2″ and 3/4″ thick. A routed edge profile tends to give the door a more elegant appearance. Raised panel cabinet doors work well for traditional and transitional looks.


Cathedral Panel Cabinet Door: A cathedral-type arch is incorporated into the upper rail of this raised or recessed panel.


Arch or Curved Panel Cabinet Door: Typically found in Raised Panel Cabinet Doors, the top portion of this door’s decorative panel curves upward in a gentle arch. The panel itself is generally raised.


Glass Panel Cabinet Door: Just as it sounds, the panel is glass. These can be elegant, or traditional depending on the glass and shape of the panel.



Cabinet Door Material

Hardwood: Most cabinets are made from hardwoods, but to reduce costs, these hardwoods are often applied as veneers over a substrate, such as plywood. Wood warps easily as its moisture content changes. Unfinished cabinetry should be finished on-site as soon as possible to prevent warping. Veneered cabinets are more stable than solid lumber in high-humidity areas.


Laminate: Made of three resin-saturated layers: a base layer of paper, a printed and colored layer (which may look like wood), and a protective transparent layer. High-pressure laminates are difficult to damage, giving vertical surfaces the same durability as countertops.


Cabinet Door Colors & Finishes


Stains: A great way to get color on your kitchen cabinetry without covering up the wood’s beauty. From greens to blues to browns, the sky is the limit on what stain you use, and the colors can really enhance your new kitchen.


Paint: Colorful kitchen cabinetry has made a big comeback. Try pretty palettes to give your kitchen flair.


Cabinet Door Hardware

As a finishing touch, add pulls, knobs and handles to cabinets. Hardware comes in a wide variety of styles, materials, and colors at all price points and contributes to a truly customized look.


Can’t decide on a specific color or stain for your kitchen cabinets? You don’t have to choose just one, check out our 7 Ways to Mix and Match Kitchen Cabinet Colors  if you’re searching for ways to blend two or more color tones into your kitchen design, check out these seven ideas that offer a blueprint for mixing and matching cabinet colors.