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What are the Best Countertop Materials for a Kitchen?

Your kitchen countertop material not only determines the aesthetic of your kitchen, but it also affects the kitchen’s functionality, maintenance, and overall cost. As you plan for your future kitchen, consider how often you’ll be using it for cooking, baking, and entertaining. This will determine the level of durability that you’ll need. Next, think about the design. How do you want your countertops to interact with the other materials and decorations in your kitchen? Be sure that your material choice will work seamlessly with the overall design of your space.


If you’re looking to give your kitchen a clean and contemporary feel, then marble is an excellent choice. White marble tends to be the most popular finish; however, there are plenty of other color options available as well. From shades of gray, brown, taupe, and green, each marble slab is entirely unique to your kitchen. While marble is sophisticated and upscale, be aware that it is not the most practical or family-friendly choice. Since it is a softer natural stone, it easily scratches and its porous nature makes it susceptible to stains.


While marble is not the most family-friendly choice, quartz is ideal for large families or individuals looking for an all-around durable countertop. Quartz countertops are incredibly hard, non-porous, and never need to be re-sealed — making them a smart investment, especially if you are looking for the same overall look that marble and granite countertops offer.


Granite is undoubtedly one of the most popular countertop materials, and for good reason too. Many people prefer granite countertops because granite provides opportunity for variety and flexibility. First, it is available in a range of dark and light colors with different flecks and variations. It can also be cut with a variety of edge choices including square, beveled, S-shape (ogee), as well as half and full bullnose. Additionally, granite countertops are heat-resistant and require very little maintenance. However, it is suggested not to cut or meal prep directly on granite to avoid any scratches or damage.

Butcher Block

Butcher block is a favorite countertop choice because of its sleek look and affordability. Made up of pieces of wood bonded into a larger slab, butcher block countertops vary in wood from cherry to maple, oak, walnut, and teak. The variability in wood options also provides flexibility in style. Another perk of butcher block is that it is the only type of countertop surface that can sustain direct cutting and slicing, as long as the wood is not sealed. Once the wood is sealed, you will need to use a separate cutting board for food prep and cutting. Additionally, if you or your family members are prone to spilling, butcher block might not be the right choice for you. Due to its porous nature, spills can lead to stained or damaged wood.

Stainless Steel

While stainless steel has always been a top pick for commercial kitchens, it’s recently made its way into residential kitchens as well. Stainless steel is a favorite for a couple of reasons. It gives a stylish, industrial look, and when cleaned properly, it’s easy to maintain. While stainless steel is incredibly durable, it isn’t recommended for a home with young children since it shows water spots and fingerprints easily.


If you are searching for the most durable countertop material, then concrete is the way to go. Not only is concrete almost entirely indestructible, but it also has a bold, elevated look. Concrete is especially popular for farmhouse chic and modern kitchen styles. While you can purchase commercially made countertops, you can also make your own, a perfect choice for any skilled DIYers. Be cautious, however, that concrete countertops can crack as your home settles.

Whether you are building a new home or in the midst of remodeling, choosing the right countertop material can feel overwhelming. We hope our tips helped you discover the right material choice for you and your family. If you are are interested in building a custom home in Wichita, contact Paul Gray Homes at 316-990-0000 to speak to an expert today!