13 kitchen flooring ideas for style on every surface

Flooring shouldn't be an afterthought - choose material and style wisely with these kitchen flooring ideas

Kitchen with stainless steel fridge and light flooring
(Image credit: Future)

So much time and effort is spent deciding upon wall decoration in a room, but the floor is just as crucial to get right. These days we have have so many amazing kitchen flooring ideas that we're spoilt for choice.

When looking at flooring for use in kitchens, two of the most important things are aesthetics and, of course, material. For the latter, the typical choices include porcelain tiles, stone, wood, concrete and LVT (Luxury Vinyl Tiles). And that's barely scratching the surface.

In terms of practicality, modern porcelain tiles tend to be the most hard-wearing choice for kitchen flooring, as they are waterproof, stain resistant and scratch-proof, as well as easy to clean. Natural stone will last a lifetime if properly installed and treated, but it's porous and must be sealed. 'Porcelain floor tiles come in a variety of sizes, styles, and colours,' notes Jo Oliver, Director, Stone and Ceramic Warehouse. 'With their incredibly hard-wearing properties, they're ideal placed in high traffic areas like kitchens.'

Foundations are worth thinking about, too. Sub-floors need to be clean, dry, structurally sound and flat, and most suppliers recommend using an installer experienced in the flooring being applied (especially for natural stone). Larger format tiles and patterned layouts usually take longer to fit and incur more wastage, so are generally more expensive.

Kitchen flooring ideas

Your choice of kitchen flooring is just as important as the cabinetry, worktops and appliances. And there's so much more to think about than just style - material, cost, warmth and maintenance are all important things to take into account when choosing kitchen flooring.  

1. Contrast with your splashback

kitchen with counter table and flooring

(Image credit: Future PLC/Veronica Rodriguez)

Use your kitchen flooring ideas as an opportunity to add personality into your home. Create an exciting and joy-inducing scheme by choosing colourful patterned tiles for both your floor and your kitchen splashback ideas.

There are a couple of ways you can make this work. While having the exact same tile on both surfaces would be a bit much with a pattern, you can choose two tiles which match either in colour or pattern. Or, use the same pattern but in two different scales.

Finally, the most bold - but often most effective - solution is to choose two contrasting but complementary colours and patterns.

2. Use flooring to zone

Kitchen with patterned floor tiles under island

(Image credit: Amtico)

Flooring is an excellent place to visually zone a space. Since so many of us live the open-plan life, with kitchens in the same room as dining spaces and living areas, it's useful to make markers separating the various functions.

In this case, choose one, fairly plain, surface for the overall flooring space. Then, choose a secondary surface, such as a patterned or coloured tile, and use this to delineate a zone. Some areas this could work in include underneath the dining table, the cooking zone and your kitchen island ideas.

3. Supersize your tiles

Kitchen with polished concrete island and large tiled floor

(Image credit: Future)

One way to use kitchen flooring ideas to improve the sense of space is to upsize. Choose larger tiles and as a result floor - and room - will appear larger.

Paler shades of tiles will also help bounce the light around, increasing this effect.

4. Lay boards in a chevron pattern

Kitchen with wooden chevron floor and black island

(Image credit: Future PLC/James French)

Wooden flooring is always a stylish choice. Ass interest by playing around with laying patterns. Chevron is having a moment, but won't date as it's a classic look.

One thing to keep in mind with wood is that these floors are not always suitable to use with underfloor heating, so if that's a dealbreaker for you make sure you check with your flooring supplier before buying. 

'When it comes to flooring, laying patterns can completely change the look and feel of a room. They have the power to make a room feel larger, split an open-plan area into different zones, or provide a quick and easy way to create inspiring and stylish floors that enhance and define your individual space,' says Lorna Williams, Head of Product Design and Visual Creation at Amtico.

'Parquet and chevron patterns remain some of the most popular pattern choices - whilst traditional by design they really work in modern homes - adding a sense of refined elegance and charm to enhance the overall aesthetic and functionality of the space.'

5. Choose a simple style

Open plan kitchen with light coloured flooring

(Image credit: Future)

The best kitchen flooring ideas are often the most simple. If you have bright cabinetry that you love, or even prefer a neutral scheme, then you probably don't want to distract from these with an overly bold floor.

Traditional wooden plank floor boards are comforting, warm and add the perfect amount of subtle character.

6. Work in vinyl

kitchen with geometric monochrome flooring and yellow chairs

(Image credit: Future PLC/Ben Anders)

Vinyl flooring is hard-wearing, durable and easy to lay. It is also much softer and warmer underfoot compared to stone and ceramic tiles, more forgiving with dropped crockery and a breeze to keep clean. A recent surge in popularity means there is now a wide range of modern, trend-led designs available.

When working out how to buy kitchen flooring, note that thickness is a good indication of quality, for both sheet and tiled vinyl. Cheap sheet vinyl starts at 1mm thick, which will make it easy to fit but not very long-lasting. Aim for 3.5mm upwards.

7. Think about pattern

Black kichen with black and white patterned flooring

(Image credit: Future)

Make a feature of your flooring with beautifully patterned kitchen floor tile ideas and they can become the standout piece in your kitchen. Consider your colour scheme carefully when playing with pattern and choose a hero colour from your cabinetry to pick out in your tile design.

8. Stick to stone

Blue Shaker kitchen with light stone flooring

(Image credit: Future)

Natural materials such as stone are always a popular choice and lend authenticity to a scheme. A current trend is 'mimica' porcelains, which recreate the look of natural materials, while offering an easy-to-care for finish.

Size of tile can have impact, too. 'Most commonly, the ‘free length’ or ‘random length’ tile size is opted for, by which the widths are fixed (usually 500mm or 600mm) and then lengths are a random selection ranging upwards to 1000mm,' says Isabel Fernandez, Director, Quorn Stone. 'This free length flagstone has the ability to work in all sized kitchens and gives maximum focus on the beauty of each tile.’

9. Create a subtle feature with parquet

White kitchen with dark parquet flooring

(Image credit: Future)

Choose a delicate parquet if you want to give a nod to a feature floor without being too over the top. Classic parquet flooring can be laid as individual blocks, or the effect can be copied by engineered wood planks, which are easier to fit.

White or pale grey units and furniture are great partners, as they let the warm wood tones shine through.

10. Fake it till you make it

Laminate herringbone flooring in kitchen

(Image credit: Amtico)

Laminate isn't just a cost-effective flooring option - modern laminates often come with long guarantees, are super-durable and can be used with underfloor heating. Plus, advancements in digital imaging technology mean that wood or stone effect versions are virtually indistinguishable from the real deal. 

11. Try simple floor tiles

Light flooring tiles in kitchen

(Image credit: Amtico)

Go for a simple and timeless effect by choosing practical lightweight porcelain tiles. The perfect addition to a country kitchen, natural stone tiles will stand the test of time and look chic next to any colour of kitchen cabinetry.  

You can even get laminate-effect tiles if you want flooring that is slightly easier to care for or warmer. 

12. Keep it country

kitchen with natural flooring

(Image credit: Future PLC/Colin Poole)

A stone floor is a lovely addition to any country kitchen ideas. Get the effect with a limestone tile, or choose a modern lookalike in porcelain. Team with classic white cabinetry to keep the look light and make the overall scheme feel more contemporary as a whole.

13. Check into checkerboard

Navy shaker kitchen with black and white checkerboard flooring

(Image credit: Future)

Be adventurous with statement kitchen flooring. Checkerboard add contemporary interest to a space and liven up plain cabinetry. Pattern is ideal for stamping personality on your home. Team with a simple metro tile for a trendy wall that won't steal attention from your floor.

What is the easiest kitchen floor to maintain?

There are so many options for your kitchen flooring on the market, but one of the most popular has to be the porcelain tile floor. 'All porcelain tiles are durable and perfectly suited to high traffic areas,' says Kamila Swiatecka, Brand & Marketing Manager, Tile Giant. 'The well-known misconception is that tiles are cold, but actually, you would be surprised how soft and warm to touch they can be. They are also ideal for use with underfloor heating, perfect for family living.'

'A porcelain tile is non-porous and will therefore provide a stain proof option which can be preferable with young children,’ adds Isabel Fernandez, Director, Quorn Stone.

What is the most hard-wearing flooring for kitchens?

Porcelain is, unsurprisingly, a very hard-wearing material. 'Natural stone flooring can be one of the most forgiving floor coverings if the right stone and finish are chosen,' says Isabel from Quorn Stone. 'Naturally some stones will be denser than others which provides more durability, however all natural stone will be subject to a little wear and tear over the years.'

LVT (Luxury Vinyl Tiles) is another great option to explore. You can find these in all manner of colours, patterns and effects, and they are very durable, making them perfect for high-traffic kitchens.

Thea Babington-Stitt
Assistant Editor

Thea Babington-Stitt is the Assistant Editor for Ideal Home. Thea has been working across some of the UK’s leading interiors titles for nearly 10 years. 

She started working on these magazines and websites after graduating from City University London with a Masters in Magazine Journalism. Before moving to Ideal Home, Thea was News and Features Editor at Homes & Gardens, LivingEtc and Country Homes & Interiors.

With contributions from