How to Master Coastal Beach House Kitchen Decorating: A Complete Guide

We would all own a little seaside sanctuary with an amazing beach house kitchen in a perfect world.

Spending days soaking up the sun and cooking up innovative decorating ideas for our beach house dream kitchen.

While we cannot all afford a waterfront property, we will explore some great ways to bring that beachy feel to your home.

I’m not talking about cheesy beach-themed kitchens with blue anchors and a wooden sign that reads, “Kitchen closed. I’m at the beach.”

Instead, we’ll explore classy coastal-inspired design and refined beach-themed décor, focusing on natural elements and organic textures.

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Beach House Kitchen Color Palette

Beach inspired kitchen color palette

Allow the beach to inspire you in your color selection decisions.  

Coastal and beach theme colors include:

  • Light beige and warm brown sand colors.
  • Shades of white in seashells.
  • All the hues of blue and grey in the cloud cover.  

Notice the natural wood tones on the beach.

The weather and the natural elements of the beach tend to create lighter wood tones, like those found in petrified and driftwood. 

Include pops of color using gorgeous greens found in beach foliage, turquoise sea glass, or vibrant corals found in ocean reefs.  

Beach House Kitchen Design Selections

Before you can start decorating you will first need to make foundational design decisions for the kitchen. This includes kitchen cabinets, floors, counters, and backsplashes.

Beach house Kitchen Cabinets

Please don’t shy away from white kitchen cabinets; they are never on their way out. 

White kitchen shaker-style cabinets are classic and timeless and complement all design styles, especially a beach house kitchen.  

two tone kitchen with white  uppers blue lowers

Try a two-tone kitchen, crisp white upper cabinets, mixing in natural wood tones on the lower cabinets, or kitchen island cabinetry. 

Avoid wood tones that have orange undertones or dark espresso tones. 

 Lighter wood grains will work best for a beach house kitchen.   

 Not only will a two-tone kitchen give a subtle contrast and dimension, but the white uppers and darker lower make the kitchen appear visually larger.  

Two-tone cabinets are an excellent choice for a smaller kitchen.  

Want bolder contrast? Pair a light grey upper cabinet and couple that with a navy blue lower cabinet or island for a nautical contrast.

Coastal Cabinet Hardware

Cabinet hardware for a coastal kitchen, or any kitchen for that matter, is a personal preference. 

 However, I caution you to resist the temptation to be gimmicky here with nautical-themed hardware like starfish pulls or octopus knobs.   

Select casual or modern cabinet hardware that matches the other metal finishes in the space. 

stainless and matte black mixed metal kitchens

Mixed Metals

 Mixing metals is exceedingly popular. 

Remember that mixed metals should contrast; mixing up to two metals in one space is ideal. 

It’s perfectly acceptable to match the stainless-steel look from your appliances to your faucet and hardware, then contrast the look with matte black pendant lamps.  

Black with gold or chrome and gold are also popular choices.  

Coastal Kitchen Countertop Inspiration

Moving on to the countertops in the beach-themed kitchen, the best ideas here include mostly natural stone choices. 

A natural stone countertop literally and figuratively brings the outside in. 

White or light color countertops should be selected in a beach-inspired kitchen. 

 Choices like quartzite, marble, and granite are the most durable and complement this design style the best.  

White Macabus quartzite is a beautiful choice for a modern coastal kitchen countertop. 

The long linear veins in the stone mimic the look of a waterfall and can also be used for a full-height slab backsplash or waterfall edge on the kitchen island.    

Beach-Themed Kitchen Backsplashes 

Regarding backsplash, if you decide not to do a continuation of the countertop for a full-height backsplash option, several decorative backsplashes can bring the idea of a beached-themed kitchen to fruition.  

coastl inspired fish scale kitchen backsplash

 Ok, I’ve been cautioning you against being too literal with your beached-themed kitchen. Still, there’s always an exception to every rule. 

Fish Scale Marble Backsplash

When executed in marble and neutral color palettes, the fish scale backsplash is an exquisite approach to a coastal-themed backsplash.  

white zellige kitchen backsplash tile
zellige tile

Other great backsplash ideas include Zellige tiles from Morocco. 

Installed in 4×4 rectangle monochromatic colors. 

Each tile is hand-made of clay dipped in glaze, then kiln fired, giving it a mesmerizing look of an opal essence or iridescent tile resembling the sea glass look. 

 Beach House Flooring Ideas

wood look porcelain tile in a beach home kitchen

The kitchen flooring will be the final foundational element of your beach house kitchen.  

The flooring will act as the glue that pulls the whole look together.

Wood flooring in a coastal kitchen should be lighter wood grain colors. 

 Natural oaks, grey or warm brown driftwood, or petrified wood colors range from subtle browns to blueish greens.  

 My preference to capitalize on that cottage feel is to select wood flooring. 

Beach-Inspired Tile Flooring

open concept kitchen in a coastl house

Wood flooring, however, isn’t always practical for those who have kids, dogs, or heavy humidity.  

Wood-look tile is a great alternative that has come a long way. 

 Porcelain tile that looks like wood is beautiful and durable. Just try to go for wider and longer planks for a higher-end look and fewer grout lines. 

 Natural stone tiles like marble, travertine, limestone, and slate also create a seamless indoor-outdoor feel that will stand the test of time.   

Coastal-Themed Carpentry Inspiration

Photo Credit Old Seagrove Homes

Woodworking can really bring home your final beach house-inspired kitchen.  

Hire a talented carpenter who can breathe life into your kitchen beach house decorating ideas.  

In a previous post, I listed several kitchen accent wall ideas that you should consider for the kitchen and dining room. 

One of my favorite ways to drive home the look of a coastal design is by adding shiplap.  

Think creatively and add a natural wood tone shiplap on the walls or inside the family room ceiling coffer.

Wood Beams

wood beams in an open concept bach cottage kitchen

 Regardless if you add faux or real wood beams, they elevate and add the wow factor to any kitchen. 

Wooden beams add yet another natural element to the room and can be a fantastic way to add a focal point in an open floor plan. 

No need to be matchy-matchy here. Wood posts’ colors can be different from the floors.  

Be creative and do what feels suitable for your personal style.  

Beach Style Kitchen Window Treatments

brown woven shades in a white beach home kitchen

Our mission is to copy a coastal home’s kitchen that is flooded with natural light. 

 We want to keep the room feeling light and airy with large open windows that take in all those sunny days. 

The window treatments should be lightweight as well. Avoid any curtains or drapes that are heavy or dark. 

Classic woven shades are an excellent choice.  

Made from natural fibers like jute, bamboo, and rattan.  

Woven window blinds add that yummy natural texture that coastal design really needs.  

Added bonus woven roman shades are inexpensive, easily sourced, and suitable for all interior design styles. 

Coastal Kitchen Lighting Ideas

rustic wood and beaded hanging beach or coastal-themed chandelier in a living room with a shiplap ceiling.

Pendant lighting is one of my favorite ways to really personalize a kitchen.

When I think about coastal design light fixtures, my imagination leans towards textured pendant lighting or glass chandeliers. 

Rattan and woven light fixtures offer a nautical feel reminiscent of the beach.  

Want a bit of glam? Try a woven light fixture incorporating crystal, geodes, or capiz shells.  

Glass chandeliers can also embody the look and feel of a beach cottage.  

Blown glass in light blues or lantern pendants accented with a gold finish or wrapped in rope.   

Beach House Kitchen Decor and Furniture

Coastal Bar Stools

coastal inspired textured woven kitchen barstool

Nothing is more fun than decorating your beach house kitchen, and bar stools are likely one of the first pieces of furniture you will purchase. 

 Bar stools will set the stage for the overall look and feel of the kitchen.  

No news flash here when I tell you to go for texture! Texture! Texture!  

Texture can be in the form of upholstered fabrics, woods, metals, plastic, woven fibers, or a combination of all five.   

Pro tip bar stool shopping

Consider your audience and the functionality when selecting your bar stools.

Each guest seated there will have unique needs.

 Children typically need higher seats with full-backs.

Elderly guests prefer full back stools for comfort and can often find woven seats uncomfortable over long periods.  

Open-concept floor plans usually have the guests seated at the kitchen island facing the kitchen with their backs towards the TV and gathering room.  

Coastal Rugs and Kitchen Runners

woven wool runner rug  in a two tone coastal kitchen

 Have you ever heard an interior designer say to start with the rug?  

Introducing a rug to a space that has already been decorated can be very challenging. 

So if you start with a rug you love and allow it to be your design inspiration for the room, selecting all other aspects will be much easier. 

Rugs can help you discover your paint color and overall style. 

Natural fiber rugs such as jute and sisal are incredible for coastal design but not necessarily for the kitchen.  

These natural fiber rugs stain easily, and food can get ground into the carpet.  

Consider a wool or performance rug for the dining area or as the kitchen runner.  

Coastal theme wall paint

Beach house kitchen paint color ideas

The wall color in your kitchen should be kept to light neutral colors.  

Paint can be one of the most challenging decisions to make.  

Here are some time-tested and proven wall colors I used as a new home design consultant.  

These are my top 5 favorite beach house kitchen decorating paint colors ideas. 

First Star By Sherwin Williams

Cool grey with blue undertones 

Chantilly Lace By Benjamin Moore

 This paint will put an end to your white paint search. Perfect for walls and ceilings.  

City Loft By Sherwin Williams

 It is a warm, soft beige. Great for a pale neutral color coastal palette. 

Sea Salt By Sherwin Williams 

Sea Salt adds calm and relaxation to any space. This gorgeous green is a cool paint with blue and grey undertones.  

Nimbus Grey- Benjamin Moore

 Stormy skies of blue and grey hues. This Benjamin Moore paint color will fully support your coastal ambitions.  

Beach House Wall Decor 

If I were designing a coastal kitchen without blinking, I would add grasscloth wallpaper to the breakfast or dining room walls.  

Linen grasscloth is very lightweight yet adds a truckload of texture to the dining area.  

What I love most about the grasscloth is its popularity. It has a timeless appeal that most people love or appreciate.  

Beach Home Kitchen Countertop Accessories

navy blue beach house kitchen with gold hardware and coastal pendant lighting

When accessorizing a beach home kitchen, include natural elements and be creative.  

Add a gorgeous piece of coral reef lifted onto a wooden pedestal.  

How about two oversized fallen palm fronds in a glass vase

two green palm fronds in beach style kitchen

Wicker baskets paired together on the countertops to hold fresh bread or folded fringed Turkish kitchen towels.  

Open shelving showcasing black and white family beach photos or boxwood hedge botanicals.  

coastal theme kitchen decor cookbook on countertops

Stack your favorite cookbooks on the counter and accent them with a wooden knot 

Wood cutting boards are always great for adding warmth to a kitchen. Review my post on how to style cutting boards throughout the kitchen.  

Countertop accessories in white  coastal kitchen

Best Natural Trees for Coastal Design

fiddle leaf tree in beach house

Fiddle leaf trees, olive trees, agave, and or paradise palms are great trees that accentuate beach house kitchen decorating ideas and decor.  

•Fiddle Leaf

Also known as a fig leaf tree makes a bold statement in casual modern and coastal farmhouse interior design.

As an added bonus these vibrant green trees are easy to maintain and grow quickly.

•Olive Trees

Looking for a more sophisticated tree?

Olive trees are great for a stylish California coastal touch. Their elegant silver leaves absolutely dazzle in the sunlight.  Olive trees are tough guys; they can thrive in drought and harsh winter temperatures.

•Paradise Palms

Nothing says tropical like a palm tree. Paradise palms effortlessly highlight a transitional space. Hailing all the way from Madagascar, these beauties can be difficult to care for.

Consider a faux paradise palm; they have come a long way and look very realistic.

Try pairing the tree with a wooden plant stand or woven plant basket to really capitalize on a beachy feel.  

Coastal Dining Tabletop Décor Inspiration 

beach decor ideas for kitchen dining table

• Oversized clam shell can be empty or with a floral design

 • Wooden vase filled with fresh hydrangeas

 • Set of indoor-outdoor lanterns in contrasting sizes

• Oversized glass hurricanes filled with white sand and candles 

• 2 warm brown wicker jugs filled with olive branches

• Concrete pedestal bowl with sea glass beaded garland.  


Beach house kitchen decorating ideas and inspiration is all around you. The best ideas will come from the beach itself.  

I can’t encourage you enough to go to the beach and allow nature to inspire your creativity.  

Take some elements of the beach home with you and allow those choices to guide you in your kitchen decorating journey.  

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