A large kitchen with white cabinets and a blue-gray island.

7 Best Kitchen Designs 2021

Originally contributed by • last updated 5/21/2021

The DIY Playbook
The DIY Playbook

We seriously love kitchens. Not just because they’re typically the rooms where we keep all of our food, but because of their potential, too. Any kitchen has the potential to be the nicest room in the house. And honestly, we all deserve to have the best ones possible.

So what makes a space the best kitchen ever? That’s a little tough to answer, since taste is subjective, but there are plenty of trends and styles out there that we can’t get enough of.

And if those styles are put into a beautiful kitchen design, then it’s going to look pretty darn amazing.

Here are some of the best examples of kitchens that make incredible use of the trends of 2021. They really show us how versatile a space it can really be, and how there are so many styles out there, but each one is unique in its own way.


The Best Big Kitchen Design

There are so many different design elements to this example that just blow our minds. The wooden ceiling is showing how wood planks are coming back in a big way, and are definitely a trend to keep an eye on in 2021 and beyond.

The earthy green of the cabinets also look perfect with the plants in the room. The open shelving doesn’t feel like a waste of space, but rather a perfect blend of functional and beautiful. The copper accents pop alongside all the green, white, and wood.

It’s so cool how the wall that the stove backs onto has a window in it. Not a tacky window that looks out of place, though. It looks intentional and lets a lot of natural light into the space. 


Best All White Kitchen Design

Making Lemonade

There are all-white kitchens out there that simply don’t work, and then there are all-white kitchens out there that prove that the look is here to stay. This is definitely the latter, since it’s such an unbelievably clean and beautiful space. 

The white cabinets, backsplash, and granite countertops in this example don’t feel like too much. That’s because the dark floors and hardware provides just enough contrast in that space to make it interesting. This is how you make a white kitchen the right way. 


Kitchen Design With The Best Contemporary Island

Then there are white kitchens that have contrasting islands. The two-toned look isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, so expect it to be a hot trend this year too. Take this example as inspiration for how to do it expertly.

We definitely have a soft spot for shaker cabinets, so we can’t help but be obsessed with how they're used in this kitchen. The cabinetry looks so chic, especially with the choice of brushed nickel hardware and pendant lights.

The space feels contemporary, but also timeless; the kind of design that will look great for years to come.


Best Small Modern Kitchen

The best kitchen doesn’t have to be synonymous with the biggest one. We all dream of making ours the best of the best, but we don’t all have that kind of room to work with.

Luckily, small kitchens can still look amazing, and this example is definitely no exception.

This is a really great take on a modern kitchen design. It has some elements that make it feel a bit more minimalist — those brass lights and white subway tiles feel especially sleek.

However, there are also elements like the black countertops, which bring this kitchen into the 21st Century.


Best Tiny Kitchen Design

DIY Showoff

Here’s another beautifully tiny example that just works. It just goes to show you that the best kitchen isn’t necessarily the biggest one. Any space can look absolutely amazing if you know what to do with it.

Stainless steel appliances look good in pretty much any home, and they work here because they are functional, but don't take over. And they match the white quartz countertops perfectly.

Speaking of: that waterfall effect on the end of the cabinet really helps to elevate the look of this tiny kitchen.

Though this example is lacking in upper cabinets, it makes up for it in those beautiful wooden shelves. There’s still plenty of storage space up there, that’s for sure. This may not be a kitchen for a gourmet chef, but it’s still one that anyone could be proud to own.


Kitchen With The Best Checkered Design Ceiling

Stacy Risenmay
Not Just A Housewife

There’s "dated" and then there’s retro, and while the former is something we all want to avoid, the latter is something we should embrace. That retro feel can look great anywhere, and having retro designs in your kitchen is such a fun idea.

This kitchen fuses those vibes with a more contemporary farmhouse style. The matte black fixtures and white shaker cabinetry are timeless, but the black and white checkers on the ceiling are the star of the show.

Seriously, who would’ve thought to put a checkered design on their ceiling? It looks so much cooler up there than it would on the floor. That’s what elevates this kitchen into one of the best out there.

Plus, there are those dark wood floors. We typically associate kitchen flooring with tiles, but keeping hardwood or laminate in the space definitely looks cool and trendy. Don’t be afraid to experiment with flooring in your own kitchen.


Best Large Two-Toned Kitchen

The DIY Playbook

Two-toned kitchens are definitely going to be around for a long time. There’s just so much you can do with them. Having a contrast between light and dark, colors or neutrals, makes for a really interesting space.

This kitchen contrasts white with a gray-blue color that feels absolutely perfect, but it isn’t the only interesting part of this room.

For starters, the sheer amount of space in this kitchen is unbelievable. There are so many cabinets and pantries that it would probably be hard to fill them all.

And that backsplash is so cool. Who would’ve thought to use a marble slab as a kitchen backsplash. Whether it’s real marble or a marble effect tile, it still looks stunning.