How to Paint Kitchen Cabinets in 5 Easy Steps!

Do you want to make a big change in your kitchen? Maybe the idea of painting kitchen cabinets appeals to you. Sometimes, doing a costly renovation for the whole kitchen might be too much. But if you just change up the look of cabinets by painting them, it can freshen and transform your space without spending lots of money. Provided one has enough patience and resolve, painting kitchen cabinets is a relatively simple do-it-yourself project.

Another advantage: It is reasonably priced (especially if one compares this cost to buying new cabinets), completely changes the look of your kitchen, and will most probably make you very happy with your do-it-yourself painting job on the cabinet. Because the kitchen is commonly known as the heart of a house, keeping its appearance and making it into an area where you wish to gather with family members or friends might provide substantial returns on investment. 

Talking about costs, we provide affordable painting services across cities. Reach out to us and we can help you figure out interior painting costs, exterior painting costs, or an approximate cost to paint a stucco house, depending on your preferences. 

Here are some of the questions you might be having regarding painting your kitchen cabinets. 

Should you learn how to paint kitchen cabinets?

You know well how when a room gets new paint or an old bookshelf is painted, it feels like something magical has happened. The kitchen cabinets of your home are no different – colors change with time and although the dark wood you initially chose for them might still be in good condition, it may not give off that light, a fresh feeling that you seek to recreate from modern designs found on your Pinterest or Instagram page every day. Thinking about it, painting cabinets cost a few hundred dollars, not the thousands needed to replace them. This makes it a good solution for someone who is not yet prepared to do an entire kitchen renovation.

Can I really Paint Kitchen Cabinets Myself?

Painting kitchen cabinets isn’t difficult, but it’s important to carefully follow all the steps in the process so that the paint job turns out well. This is not a moment for taking shortcuts. Like many tasks, having a friend with you can be useful but it is not required. If you have special motivation and skill with a paintbrush, this could potentially be accomplished over a weekend as a do-it-yourself project—depending on the area of your kitchen and how fast you work.

The number of kitchen cabinets you have determines how much time it will take to paint them all. You also need sufficient space for preparing the cabinet doors, which involves sanding, priming, painting, and allowing drying time after applying the first coat before putting on another layer. More patience results in a better final touch.

Can I just Paint Over my Kitchen Cabinets?

If there is a layer of paint already present on the kitchen cabinet, you might need to add a few more steps to the process. It might appear that “painting over existing cabinet colors could save time,” but this method can generate difficulties or problems in attaining the preferred appearance. While noting that these extra layers might also bring textural problems which could lead to an uneven finish.

Tips to Paint Your Kitchen Cabinets

There are a couple of things to consider when choosing paint for your cabinets.

  • Go for paint that is specially made for cabinets, this will give a very smooth finish. But, any good quality paint should do the job well.
  • Ensure that your paint is acrylic, not vinyl. Acrylic latex paint has strong properties and can be cleaned easily.
  • With latex paints, always follow the manufacturer’s instructions regarding cure time.
  • Finalize the kind of finish you want. A matte finish is less shiny and has a low-gloss appearance. A high-gloss finish reflects more light and gives a very shiny, smooth surface. Satin finishes are in between these two extremes; they offer some shine but not as much gloss and also have a slight texture to the touch.

Remember these tips and you’re sure to do a professional-looking job:

  • Purchase the appropriate supplies for your type of cabinets: solid wood, laminate, or metal.
  • Check the paint label on the can for specific instructions.
  • Cabinets made of wood are usually the best for painting, yet you can paint any surface that is scuffed with sandpaper.
  • For laminate cabinets, use a unique bonding primer. The laminate should be good for a better outcome.
  • A gloss finish will make your cabinets shiny, but it might show many dings or mistakes. Kitchens usually opt for semi-gloss or satin finishes. Some flat-finish paints could be challenging to wash off. Check the instructions for details.

How to Paint Cabinets

1. Prep 

Use tape to cover countertops and flooring with rosin paper. Then, put plastic sheeting on the backsplash, windows, fixed appliances, and interior doorways to protect the remainder of the house from dust and fumes.

Mask off the wall around the cabinets.

Set up a worktable for painting doors, drawers, and shelves.

2. Clean all the surfaces

Use a degreaser solution to cleanse the cabinet. Spray it on and then wipe it with a rag. This gets rid of all the oils and grease that can stop a perfect finish from being achieved. If normal cleaners do not work well, you might try using trisodium phosphate (TSP) which is a strong cleaner sold in hardware or paint stores. Just make sure you follow the safety precautions on the container.

When every single cabinet piece becomes clean, rinse all of them using water and allow for drying.

3. Primer

Time for the primer. If cabinets have intense stains, select a stain-blocking primer that dries fast and closes knots and other surface flaws that could show up in the topcoats. But in general, you don’t really need stain-blockers for typical painting jobs. An oil-based or 100 percent acrylic latex primer should work well enough most of the time.

Pour primer into the paint tray and prepare the roller and brush. Apply a coat of primer on the cabinet, doors, and drawer fronts by using a brush along edges or tight spots while using a roller on bigger, flat surfaces.

4. Type of Paint to Choose or use 

You are now prepared for painting! If your color choice is about the same shade as what already exists, then applying two layers should suffice. Possibly, even one layer might work fine. When you are painting over a dark finish using a light color, it can be more difficult and might need three coats. Change brushes for each coat.

5. Put back everything

After the second coat has dried, put back the door and drawer fronts. Now, relish in the thought that you have spruced up your kitchen cabinets with a fresh appearance while not using much time or money.

If you are still not happy with the results or need to get in touch with professional painters, feel free to reach out to us! 

Who are we?

We are a team of expert painters from the Paris Painting Company

If you have any questions about kitchen cabinet painting Minneapolis, feel free to get in touch with us. We would be more than happy to help you out. 

Besides kitchen cabinets, if you want expert help with common stucco problems or need to know about expert commercial interior painters Minneaopolis or even exterior painters Minneapolis, we will be able to help you. 

Contact us soon! 


What kind of paint to use for kitchen cabinets?

For kitchen cabinets, your priority should be picking up paints that are perfect for high wear and tear. Enamel paints can fit these requirements. 

What happens if you don’t sand before painting?

Sanding helps to create an equal, smooth surface for your paint to glide on. Not sanding will make your paint finish look uneven and not clean. 

Can you paint straight over the kitchen cabinets?

 The original color can potentially shift or impact how the new color looks, even if you use several coats of paint. Even if we start with a color that’s white or neutral, the additional layers may cause disturbance in even coating and adhesion, enhancing chances of chipping later on. 

is it worth painting kitchen cabinets?

Yes, painting your kitchen cabinets can help you get a completely new look. It is much more affordable than getting a new cabinet.