Dark kitchen cabinet ideas – 10 ways to style a dramatically dark scheme

Here's how to bring mesmerizing interest to your space with our curated selection of dark kitchen cabinet ideas

Dark kitchen cabinet ideas
(Image credit: Future)

Finding the right dark kitchen cabinet ideas is pivotal to creating a kitchen that is both mesmerizing and intriguing. 

Whether you prefer a classic look with lots of detailing or something more modern, such as flat-fronted doors, these dark kitchen cabinet ideas will provide you with the inspiration you need to create a scheme that fits your home's period, your decorating style and the room's proportions. 

If you're looking for more kitchen color ideas, this selection of dark kitchen cabinetry will provide inspiration.

Dark kitchen cabinet ideas

From mesmerizing materials that will add depth to your space to the added extras that will make a dark kitchen ideas shine, we've asked the experts to explain why a dark kitchen cabinet should have a place on your list of top kitchen cabinet ideas.

1. Introduce metal effects

Dark kitchen cabinetry with metal effects

(Image credit: Ledbury Studio)

Looking for kitchen cabinet color ideas with drama? This breakfast cabinet from The Metallics Kitchen Collection by Ledbury Studio features hand-textured pewter fronts with dark-stained ash. Concave handles bring another point of difference to the doors, which are fashioned from stainless steel that has been blasted to dull the shine and darken the appearance. 

‘I love combining fine craftsmanship with beautiful and unusual materials and textures,’ says designer Charlie Smallbone. ‘It’s the part of designing a bespoke kitchen that excites me the most.

2. Take a bold approach 

dark kitchen cabinetry with purple and gold accents

(Image credit: Rachel Chudley)

Interior designer Rachel Chudley created this atmospheric scheme using impactful materials in a small area. ‘Plum and brassy yellow combinations are echoed throughout the flat, while a herringbone slate floor adds texture,’ she says. ‘We mirrored the wall facing the window to enlarge the space.’

3. Create strong lines

Dark kitchen cabinetry with smokey marble surface

(Image credit: Fiona Barratt-Campbell)

Chunky kitchen countertop ideas bring an air of authority, while grey marble, from Italy, works well with smoky timber cabinetry. Interior designer Fiona Barratt-Campbell says, ‘The kitchen is made by a local artisan joiner. The handles are also custom, and something different to the usual pull bar.'

4. Go for a dramatic yet classic look

Black kitchen with dark kitchen cabinet ideas

(Image credit: Heidi Caillier)

This black kitchen by interior designer Heidi Caillier goes big on drama with units in Farrow & Ball’s Studio Green, which appears almost black but has a magical depth to it. ‘The kitchen is to the side of a huge, light room so I knew we needed to make it feel cozy. More interesting than classic white, dark surfaces were a way to make the kitchen feel like its own space. 

5. Introduce Shaker cabinetry with a twist

Dark kitchen cabinet idea with Shaker cabinetry

(Image credit: Roundhouse kitchen)

With its moody colors and rich textures, this combination of gray kitchen ideas is a modern reinvigoration of classic Shaker kitchen ideas. The bespoke Roundhouse kitchen is finished in Farrow & Ball’s Pitch Black, with brass handles and hinges to add a hint of glamor. The floating reeded-glass cabinets are in Downpipe. 

‘The feature wall of polished plaster frames the wall cabinets, while the fluted glass adds interest and allows for the display of items,’ says Paul Welburn, designer at Roundhouse. Other details include antique silver mirror backs in the wall units and handles in antique brass.

6. Create contrast with brass

Dark kitchen cabinetry with brass details

(Image credit: Officine Gullo)

Sumptuous hotel interiors were the inspiration for this Officine Gullo kitchen. ‘The units are painted a dark dramatic blue, which complements powder-blue walls,’ says Viktor Skoglund of kitchen supplier Himlekok. ‘The strong brass details accentuates the kitchen cabinet color.’

As well as working with blue kitchen ideas, warm metallic accessories work well with darker green kitchen ideas, too. 

7. Go for a graphic approach

Dark kitchen cabinetry with black and white cabinetry

(Image credit: Arbor kitchen)

‘Kitchen colors completely alter the mood of any space,’ says Leisha Norman, designer at Harvey Jones. ‘Used cleverly, darker shades of grey, green, blue and even black add sophistication, like in the Arbor kitchen here, especially with statement handles and well-positioned lighting.’

8. Make it monochrome

Dark kitchen cabinet with monochrome color scheme

(Image credit: Studio Tate)

This show-stopping black kitchen idea has been masterminded by Melbourne-based interior architecture practice Studio Tate. Statement finishes, such as graphic terrazzo surfaces on the wall and island unit, breathe life into the monochromatic palette and are punctuated with black accessories. A skylight above the run of units enhances the drama of the space.

'To ensure a seamless flow between the external architecture and interiors, a reduced color palette of soft gray and black was chosen for the cabinetry,' says Alex Hopkins, design director, Studio Tate.

9. Go for a dark stained wood

Dark kitchen cabinetry with black stain wood

(Image credit: TR Studio)

Taking timber in a contemporary direction requires a considered approach to avoid missing out on the wood’s natural beauty. TR Studio chose deVOL’s Sebastian Cox range, featuring cabinetry in black-stained beech. 

‘We like to use wood kitchen cabinet ideas in a very calm way in kitchens. You can maintain clean lines and use sleek surfaces, but wood itself brings craft and texture, both visual and tactile,’ says Tom Rutt, founder, TR Studio. ‘We love how this wood kitchen cabinet idea strikes the balance between traditional and contemporary. It is clearly a real solid timber door, but the color makes it abstracted and adds a modernity.’

10. Paint it black

Dark kitchen cabinet with painted island

(Image credit: Roundhouse)

The richness of this scheme is brought about by using paint in two deep shades, selected after designers Sam Hart from Roundhouse and Paul Carter of Vivid Consultancy studied how the light falls at certain times of the day. 

The tall units are painted in Copper Beech and the island in New Black, both by Paint & Paper Library. Although striking as a whole, this kitchen’s success arguably lies in its finer details. On the kitchen island, a thick band of brass in the shadowline of the kitchen countertop elevates the glamorous quartzite to another level. 

Finally, a trio of dark glass pendants and bar stools in plush emerald were added, bringing poise, texture and a swish of deep-jewel color to the space.

How do you make dark kitchen cabinets look good?

Dark kitchen cabinet ideas can be made to look both dramatic and sophisticated in many ways, and will suit open-plan kitchens, galley kitchen, U-shaped kitchens and L-shaped kitchens.

Black is a neutral color and will go with almost anything, you just have to plan your space out well and make sure everything comes together as you want it to. Black is never going to clash with any color you choose, so this is your opportunity to choose a contrasting color palette that will truly sing out. 

What you’ll need to consider is the kind of atmosphere you want to create. Black and white is a timeless combination that is not only chic, but great for small kitchen ideas where you may want to ensure the space feels light and airy. Wood also works really well in a variety of forms, from dark mahoganies to lighter oaks. 

Jennifer Ebert

Jennifer is the Digital Editor at Homes & Gardens. Having worked in the interiors industry for a number of years, spanning many publications, she now hones her digital prowess on the 'best interiors website' in the world. Multi-skilled, Jennifer has worked in PR and marketing, and the occasional dabble in the social media, commercial and e-commerce space. Over the years, she has written about every area of the home, from compiling design houses from some of the best interior designers in the world to sourcing celebrity homes, reviewing appliances and even the odd news story or two.