Mid-Century Modern Kitchen Design Ideas

Posted January 2, 2020 by Cabinets To Go

They say that everything comes back into style eventually, and it looks like the interior design trends from the 30s–60s are no exception. The style from this era, called mid-century modern, is inspiring countless kitchen designs and remodels today.

The mid-century modern style is defined by clean lines, useful functionality, a blend of traditional and non-traditional, pops of color, and contrasting elements like wood and plastic.

It’s not surprising that this trend is making a comeback—minimalism is a growing movement, and mid-century modern design certainly draws from the minimalistic styles of Germany and Scandinavia (think IKEA).

Whether you’re remodeling your entire kitchen or just want to incorporate a few new elements at a time, we’ve broken down a few mid-century modern kitchen design ideas for you to explore.


Add white cabinets to your mid-century modern kitchen. Also try mid-century modern cabinet design ideas like modern cabinets and bronze, gold, and copper pulls.
Achieve a mid-century modern kitchen with Modern style white cabinets, clean lines, and warm-toned knobs and pulls.

Sleek Design

Clean lines are one of the key design elements of the mid-century modern style. Therefore, cabinets without raised or recessed panels are best. Look for something that is straight and sleek without any decorative elements in the cabinet itself. Cabinets To Go’s New Modern Line of cabinets fits the bill perfectly.

Color Combination

Many mid-century modern kitchens also feature wood cabinetry with flat panels. Bring a touch of modernism and variety to your kitchen by combining different colors of cabinets. For example, opt for glossy white cabinets up top and wood-toned cabinets below. You’ll get the warm, classic vibes from the wood and the modern edge from the white!

Cabinet Handles

When choosing between pulls and handles, we recommend choosing square-edge handles in bronze, copper, or gold. The warm tones in these metals complement the warm wood tones and contrast against the sharp lines nicely. Pulls and handles with decorative elements or curved edges don’t fit the mid-century modern aesthetic.


Try light hardwood floors, grey hardwood floors, and tile floor for your Mid-century modern kitchen flooring.
Light wood floors, gray hardwood floors, and neutral-toned tile floors are perfect for mid-century modern flooring.

Classic light wood floors also fit the mid-century aesthetic splendidly; however, a gray flooring works just as well for a more modern look. On the other hand, you could opt for a tiled or laminate floor that complements your color scheme. Either way, go for something neutral in color.


Mid-century modern kitchen lighting: Good lighting is key to your mid-century modern kitchen remodel. Light up your kitchen design with large windows, hanging kitchen lights, and open floor plans.
To nail that mid-century modern kitchen look, opt for large windows and sleek light fixtures.

Many houses designed in the mid-century modern style featured large windows and open floor plans. This intentional design brings in natural light to many parts of the house at once. So, if you have the budget and space for a full kitchen remodel, enlarge your existing windows or add more to an exterior wall.

Likewise, if you want to refresh the hanging lights above your island, opt for sleek and modern lamps. Look for white metal shades and neutral-colored hanging cords to achieve this look.


Try white subway style backspalsh for your mid-century modern kitchen renovation.
Use backsplash to elevate your mid-century modern kitchen.


Creative backsplash tile patterns can elevate your mid-century modern kitchen redesign. For instance, try incorporating a bright accent color, like red or turquoise, in a unique pattern. You can also keep it neutral with a white tile in a funky shape and a black grout accent. Of course, you could also go for a simple and more modern subway tile with white grout. Get some backsplash inspiration and try something new!

Paint Color

To maintain the brightness and airiness of a mid-century modern kitchen, lean towards lighter colors. White is of course a great option, especially if you have all wood cabinets. If you want something especially eye-catching, incorporate a pop of color into your wall paint color. Make it bold and fully go for it—no pale pastels here!


Embrace the cleans lines of mid-century modern design with recessed sinks. Double basin kitchen sinks are ideal for modern kitchen design.
Double-basin sinks are perfect for keeping your counter modern and sleek.

Mid-century modern sinks should be functional and sleek. We recommend a recessed sink (not a drop-in) to maintain the sleek and consistent line of your countertop. A stainless steel double-basin sink works well to maintain functionality and offers the square edges that define mid-century modern design.


Mid century modern white kitchen countertops are bright and sleek.
White countertops are ideal for mid-century modern’s bright, sleek aesthetic.

Bright white counters are the way to go for mid-century modern design in your kitchen. Quartz is a higher-end option that imparts the sleekness you’re looking for, but formica and acrylic countertops are great options at a more affordable price point.

Whatever countertop you choose, make sure it’s sleek, bright, and doesn’t have a lot of visible specks or patterns. The goal is to keep it simple.

Additional Design Elements

Mid-century modern kitchen furniture like chairs, tables, and appliances combine the old and new.
Mid-century modern kitchen furniture combines old and new.

Combination of Old and New

Don’t feel like you have to completely throw out all of the existing items in your kitchen. Part of what makes the mid-century modern style so appealing is the blend of old and new items. So keep your kitchen table and update it with new chairs.

Investing in new appliances and cabinets is crucial, but you can supplement those brand-new purchases with finds from antique and thrift stores. By searching around, you will be able to find barstools, wall art, and cooking accessories that fit your new design theme and color scheme. Plus, the actual mid-century modern additions will add to the authenticity!


Without investing a huge chunk of change, you can impart mid-century modern sensibilities into your existing kitchen by upgrading your seating. Choose chairs with curved edges, white fabric, and wooden legs. For a more modern upgrade, select wire or metal barstools.


If you’re upgrading all of your kitchen appliances as part of your mid-century modern kitchen remodel, we recommend opting for all stainless steel. The sleek modern look juxtaposes the warm wood tones and imparts a functionality and sleekness to the room.

Cabinets To Go can help you execute your mid-century modern kitchen design ideas! Schedule an in-home design consultation with one of our expert designers, who will create a 3D rendering of your new kitchen!