Choosing the perfect backsplash to complement stainless steel counters can be an exciting yet daunting task. With so many options to consider, it’s important to find a style that aligns with your overall kitchen design aesthetic. Here are 10 stunning backsplash ideas that look amazing with stainless steel countertops.

Vintage Tile

There’s something about vintage-style tile that pairs beautifully with stainless steel’s modern, sleek look. Subway tiles, penny rounds, hexagons, and checkerboard patterns evoke a retro vibe. The classic white color allows the stainless steel to take center stage. To add visual interest, mix varying tile sizes, patterns, or use an accent border. Vintage tile backsplashes give a timeless look.


Natural stone like marble makes an elegant pairing with stainless steel. Marble’s inherent veining provides depth and contrast to shiny counters. Stick with white, gray, or black marble to complement stainless. For major visual impact, choose large marble tiles or slabs. Or get the look for less with marble mosaics or marble-print ceramic tiles. A marble backsplash brings a touch of luxury.

Glass Tile

Sleek glass tile makes for a gorgeous modern mix with stainless steel. The sheen of glass and metal play off each other beautifully. Glass tile comes in every color, but neutral hues like white, gray, or black work best. Accent with bold pops of color. Mixing glass tile shapes and sizes creates appealing dimension. Glass tile backsplashes make a contemporary statement.

Metal Tile

For serious contemporary edge, metal tiles are a perfect stainless steel complement. Options like stainless, copper, brass, and nickel provide major shine. Mix metal finishes and colors for extra pop. Keep the rest of the design simple to let the metallic tiles shine. Consider 3D tile shapes too. Metal tile backsplashes make a seriously bold, modern statement.


The industrial vibe of brick makes it an unexpected match for stainless steel. Opt for matte finish bricks in muted natural tones. Consider subway style or uneven, authentic reclaimed bricks. Leave grout lines visible for added contrast. Add interest with a herringbone pattern. Brick backsplashes give an urban, loft-like look.

Wood Planks

Wood may seem unlikely for kitchens, but it lends warmth and texture next to cool stainless steel. For backsplashes, use moisture-resistant woods like teak or ipe. Go reclaimed for more character. Use varying wood grain patterns and sizes for interest. Accent with metal trim. A wood backsplash imparts natural style.


Like marble, natural stone makes an elegant backsplash choice for stainless steel. Options like granite, slate, travertine, and limestone come in neutral hues ideal for pairing. Choose honed or tumbled finishes for matte contrast to stainless sheen. Stacked stone provides bold texture. A stone backsplash lends organic drama.

Patterned & Textured Tile

Liven up sleek stainless with uniquely patterned and textured tile. Options abound, from Moroccan fish-scale tile to handmade Mexican talavera. Consider 3D tile for ultra-modern appeal. Geometric patterns add graphic punch. For softer contrast, use organic textures like crackle glass, stone mosaics, or pebbled tile. A textured backsplash adds artistic flair.

Graphic Kitchen Wallpaper

Removable wallpaper lets you get creative with vivid prints and patterns not possible in permanent tile. Modern graphic prints, abstract designs, or faux textures all pop against stainless counters. Use wallpaper just on the backsplash or floor-to-ceiling for maximum drama. Change it up easily whenever you want a new look. Wallpaper backsplashes make a seriously bold statement.


Don’t overlook painted backsplashes—they can provide clean, cohesive style with stainless steel. Use high-gloss or ceramic paints formulated for kitchens. Choose sleek solid hues like black, navy, or charcoal gray for color impact. Add interest with two alternating colors. Painting allows you to match or contrast any shade with your counters. A painted backsplash offers classic, seamless style.


With so many stylish options, from vintage tile to graphic wallpaper and natural stone, choosing a statement backsplash is the fun part of pairing it with stainless steel counters. Consider your overall kitchen aesthetic—whether you want a cool modern look, rustic charm, or artistic flair. Then let your backsplash complement the industrial vibe of stainless steel while adding visual interest through shape, color, texture, and pattern. With the right backsplash match, your stainless steel counters will shine.

FAQs About Backsplashes for Stainless Steel Counters

What is the most popular backsplash for stainless steel counters?

Subway tile and marble are two of the most popular backsplash choices for stainless steel counters. The classic look of white subway tile and natural veining of marble provide visual interest while letting the counters take center stage.

What color backsplash goes best with stainless steel counters?

Neutrals like white, gray, black, and tan work best with stainless steel counters. These muted hues allow the counters to stand out while the backsplash acts as a subtle complement.

What kind of backsplash should you not use with stainless steel counters?

Avoid very bold, busy patterns or bright colors like red, yellow or turquoise with stainless counters. These can make the space look too chaotic. Simple, sleek styles enhance the modern look of stainless best.

Should you match stainless steel appliances and countertops?

It’s generally best to match stainless steel appliances and countertops for a cohesive, pulled-together look. However, a contrasting finish like black or white appliances can look very striking with stainless counters.

What does a marble backsplash symbolize?

Marble naturally denotes luxury, so a marble backsplash conveys an elegant, upscale look and feel. The stone’s striations also symbolize the uniqueness of natural materials.

Can you put wallpaper on a backsplash?

Yes, removable wallpaper or contact paper specifically designed for backsplashes can allow you to customize your backsplash look. Just ensure the wallpaper you choose is waterproof and easy to clean.

What is the most cost-effective backsplash?

Painted backsplashes are typically the most budget-friendly option. DIY kits include all the specialty paint products needed. Peel-and-stick wallpaper or affordable ceramic tile are other low-cost backsplash choices.

Is glass or ceramic tile better for a backsplash?

Glass tile provides a highly modern, sleek look. But ceramic tile is more durable, easier to clean, and withstands heat better. So ceramic tile may be the more practical option for behind cooking areas.

Should you seal a natural stone backsplash?

Sealing natural stone like marble, granite or travertine is highly recommended. The sealant helps prevent stains from water and oils and makes the stone much easier to clean and maintain.

What backsplash goes with quartz countertops?

Like stainless steel, white, gray or neutral-toned backsplashes complement quartz countertops best. Subway tile, marble, wood, patterned ceramic, and glass tile all pair nicely with popular quartz colors.