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10.62 per cent of kitchens are reported to be in the modern design style.  Given the popularity of modern kitchen design that’s not very many given traditional (31.41%), contemporary (25.18%) and transitional (16.42%) make up quite a bit more.

Immediately below is our dynamic modern kitchen ideas gallery which is updated with new photos regularly.  Below that gallery we set out a separate gallery illustrating 18 modern kitchen design ideas.

Modern Kitchen Photo Gallery









The kitchen features multiple cabinetry, large center island and marble countertops.Trulia

The kitchen features marble countertops and a center island with a breakfast bar along with a dining nook on the side.Trulia

The kitchen features beautiful pendant lights and a center island with a space for the breakfast bar. Photo credit: Louis Prud'hommeAnik Péloquin architecte

The kitchen's view from the living room shows the beautiful lighting, flooring and walls. Photo credit: Louis Prud'hommeAnik Péloquin architecte

The kitchen's center island features a hardwood countertop that has a space for the breakfast bar. Photo credit: Louis Prud'hommeAnik Péloquin architecte

Another view of the kitchen featuring its breakfast bar, modish counter and stylish lights. Photo Credit: Adam LetchSAOTA

Another view of the kitchen featuring its stylish counter and the doorway leading to outdoor on the side. Photo Credit: Adam LetchSAOTA

The kitchen is complete with modern appliances, stylish lights and a breakfast bar featuring a modish counter. Photo Credit: Adam LetchSAOTA

Another view of the kitchen featuring the smooth white countertops and its L shape style. Photo Credit: Adam LetchSAOTA

The kitchen boasts modish ceiling packed by recessed ceiling lights. The huge counter can be used as a breakfast bar while the room also has wooden walls. Photo Credit: Adam LetchSAOTA

Full view of the kitchen featuring a huge center island equipped by top-of-the-line appliances and smooth marble countertops with a breakfast bar. Photo credit: Erik RotterAudax

Entryway to the kitchen featuring hardwood floors and white walls. Photo Credit: Raquel LangworthyChango & Co.

The great room extends up to the kitchen featuring a granite countertop. Photo Credit: Raquel LangworthyChango & Co.

The kitchen offers a breakfast bar lighted by pendant lighting on a ceiling with beams. Photo Credit: Raquel LangworthyChango & Co.

The kitchen features blue walls and smooth espresso counter lighted by a skylight. Photo Credit: Gerhard HeuschHeusch Inc.

The kitchen offers a dining nook while boasting a beautiful counter and walls.Trulia

The kitchen boasts stylish countertops and lighting along with the appliances. Photo credit: Bruce DamonteStudio VARA

The kitchen boasts stylish island with a space for a breakfast bar. Photo credit: Bruce DamonteStudio VARA

The kitchen features smooth marble countertop for both sink area and center island.Trulia

Another look of the kitchen showcasing the elegant lighting and beautiful breakfast bar.Trulia

When you’re upgrading your kitchen, a modern design is something you may wish to consider. However, your concept of a modern kitchen design is often much different than a designer’s. While you may think modern designs contain furniture, appliances, and colors which are popular now, they use ideas from the past.

Modern Design Definition

In interior design terms, modern designs involve a certain time period, the 1920s to the 1950s to be exact, which never changes. These designs contain clean lines, natural materials, and a minimalistic style. If this is the type of design that you want, then there are several modern kitchen design ideas you may find appealing.


In a study of over 1.78 million kitchens, researchers found that almost 11% of them were modern designs, yet this style falls in line with most other styles by having hardwood as by far the most common flooring material.  Despite all the composite products out there for home improvement, good ole natural wood is still favored for petty much every style.

Cabinet Materials and Styles

The cabinet finishes in kitchens with a modern design aesthetic are often acrylic with high gloss or flat panel wood cabinets.  In fact, approximately 66% of modern kitchens have flat panel cabinetry design.  Since this design involves having clean lines, flat-panel cabinetry is usually found in these kitchens.

Engineered quartz is the most common countertop material with granite a somewhat distant second.

Any Kitchen Size

Modern kitchens suit any size kitchen, from small one-wall kitchens to large ones.  In fact, some modern efficiencies make modern features a great style for small kitchen spaces.   The use of a center island or a counter defining the kitchen area from the dining or living area is also common since open floor plan kitchens are very popular.

The islands or counters can also provide space for eating in the kitchen, which is something many homeowners want. Along with working well for any kitchen size, modern designs also suit different kitchen layouts.

Whether it is an L-shape kitchen or a single-wall kitchen, the clean lines and minimalistic style can be applied to most kitchens layouts.

If you like kitchens with an uncluttered, clean aesthetic, then you may find that a modern design is right for your home.

18 Modern Kitchen Ideas

1. Mix modern with craftsman

This kitchen is uniquely modern with a craftsman twist which makes it interesting.  The wood trim gives it a craftsman vibe, but the high gloss cabinetry and simple design give it an overall modern look.

Modern kitchen with craftsman elements (interesting)

2. Use many materials in straight lines

There’s a lot going on here. Stainless steel, wood and acrylic finishes make up this kitchen design.  The under cabinet lighting, which is not subtle gives an extra sheen not seen in most kitchens.

Modern kitchen design with black, wood and stainless steel. Full stainless steel island and black flat panel cabinets.

3. Mix acrylic high gloss with natural wood

The dark high gloss acrylic cabinets juxtaposes very nicely with the light natural wood countertops.  You’ll see wood often used in modern designs to temper the coolness of acrylics and metals.

Modern kitchen example with black flat panel cabinets and warm wood countertops.

4. Be bold with red and embrace the steel

This screams modern. It’s a bold red with acrylic cabinetry mixed with plenty of stainless steel.  Straight lines throughout.  I’ll say this; the red tempers the stainless steel better than one would think without actually seeing it.

Modern kitchen design with red high gloss cabinets and stainless steel countertops.

5. Gray, White and Chrome for Small Kitchen Spaces

I love this look. That warm gray is popular for kitchens; it definitely has a warming effect, which you wouldn’t expect gray to do, but the grain does the job.  The high gloss white cabinets and modern chrome stools tip this kitchen into modern style nichely.

Small modern kitchen design with chrome stools and grainy gray cabinets.

6. Modern isn’t always “sleek straight lines”

Sleek, straight lines describes modern, but modern isn’t always straight lines. Check this kitchen out with curves throughout combined with red, high gloss cabinetry and stainless steel.

Modern kitchen with curved counter design and stainless steel appliances.

7. Pour on the concrete

Perhaps modern industrial best describes this concrete kitchen. It looks very cool with the concrete wall and island in an overall minimalist design.

Modern kitchen with concrete island and concrete wall and concrete countertops.

8. Skip the cabinet hardware

This design has flat-faced dark gray cabinets with no cabinet hardware. It gives off that “sleek” look.  The consistent use rectangles provide the subtle texture this otherwise austere kitchen needs.

Dark and light gray modern kitchen with flat panel cabinetry.

9. Toss in Geometric Shapes All Over the Place

Eye-catching geometric shapes is a modern design hallmark.  Below is a terrific example of a kitchen filled with interesting rectangles and 3D cubes making up the design.  It’s a very effective technique for a modern vibe despite the very un-modern color scheme.

Modern kitchen with geometric shapes including 3 dimensional rectangles and cubes.

10. The Modern Kitchen Cave

Many apartment kitchens are tucked away in te corner and are tiny.  Many have no windows making it cave-like. That’s okay. You can embrace the darkness with a dark modern look like the example below.

Dark small gallery modern kitchen desing.

11. Thick, open design

Take a look at the island. It’s a think, continuous open shape that gives off both solidness and openness at the same time.  It’s fabulous (although the lost storage space is unfortunate).  You’ll also notice the combination of 90 degree angles and spheres which make for an interesting look.

Modern kitchen with dark straight lines counter balanced with spherical shapes.

12. Crisp White Throughout

One way to achieve that uber modern design is to gowth high gloss, all white cabinets.  Add white ceiling, walls and flooring and you have one cold, but staunchly modern design.  The only texture in the design below is the checkered stool backs.  Amazingly, those stools stand out in this kitchen whereas they wouldn’t in so many other designs with far more texture.

All white high gloss modern kitchen design.

13. Use Lots of Glass

Glass-faced flat cabinets are a strong modern feature which is seen throughout the example below.  It’s tempered with white stone which I think is a terrific combination.

Modern kitchen with glass-faced cabinets and dark wood cabinets.

14. Modern backsplash = modern kitchen?

This is not entirely a modern design, but I included it to show you how the backsplash choice can tilt a kitchen toward a particular design.  The glass tile here gives it a very contemporary look.  Imagine the backsplash a terra cotta or Mediterranean tile.  This would be a very different kitchen.

Interesting kitchen with blue glass tile backsplash.

15. Flat panel cabinetry and applianes

Flat panel appliances aren’t as popular as you’d think for good reason.  Stainless steel appliances add variety in a kitchen. Specifically they cool down the extensive use of wood.  You can see that here. I personally think stainless steel refrigerator would improve this kitchen yet not compromise the modern flat-panel cabinetry.

Another notable feature is how the cabinets extend to the ceiling. That exaggerates the minimalistic effect of the flat panel cabinetry.

Modern kitchen with dark flat panel cabinets and modern white and chrome bar stools.

16. Combine high gloss white with jet black

The black and white look is classic.  It needs careful implementation, but when done well, it’s fabulous. The example below is mostly white, but tempered with a jet black ceiling, backsplash and floor.  You don’t often see a black ceiling; usually the black is woven in other ways, but in this case I think it works.

White and black kitchen design. High gloss white cabinets; black ceiling, backsplash and floor.

17. Modern mixed with traditional

I know it’s crazy to suggest a kitchen is both modern and traditional but that’s the sense I get when analyzing the example below.  The space doesn’t scream modern, yet the cabinetry and island are definitely modern.  I think it’s those pendant lights, uninteresting ceiling, the failure of cabinets rising to the ceiling and wood floor that compromise the overall modern design.  Nevertheless, one can understand how tempering modern to some degree is desirable.

Tempered modern kitchen design; modern cabinets and island with warm wood flooring and traditional pendant lighting.

18. White, black and… Glass?

I think this example is clever in how the warmly lit glass-faced cabinets provide the warmth to counter-balance the cool black and white cabinets and flooring.  Speaking for floor, check out that black and white floor.  It’s definitely effective.

Black, white and glass modern kitchen.