14 Durable Flooring to Use for Your Kitchen: See the Comparison Table


Kitchens go through a lot every day. It is the heart of every house where a lot of cooking and a lot of human interaction takes place. The kitchen floor would have to withstand multiple hazards and abuses from dropped skillets, dishes, and cooking utensils, to spills and splatters from preparing different dishes.

A good kitchen floor should then have a good balance of the following aspects:

  • Durability – Since the kitchen floor will be subjected to an occasional dropping of cookware and utensils, regular foot traffic, occasional rolling of carts and equipment, and other sorts of activities, it should be able to absorb all the abuses it will encounter without breaking and getting damaged. It should also last a long time or not wear down too quickly before the need for repairs or replacement.
  • Ease of Cleaning – Cleaning up after making a mess cooking should be quick and easy.
  • Moisture Resistant – Since kitchen floors will get the occasional spills and splatters from various liquids, and the possible leaking or bursting of water pipes, it should have a high resistance to moisture and protected well from any damages caused by getting wet or soaked.
  • Safety and Comfort – Kitchen floors should have good traction to walk on, even if it gets wet. You wouldn’t want to accidentally slip on a wet kitchen floor while holding anything sharp.
  • Style – Your kitchen floor should not only be functional, but it should also look good too. Working in a well designed and visually pleasing kitchen works wonders psychologically. It can also help to increase the resale value of your house.

With all the important aspects above in mind, here are the 14 durable kitchen flooring you can use. Below is a table showing an overview of their different aspects rated from 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest.

MaterialDurabilityEase of CleaningMoisture ResistanceSafety and ComfortStyleTotal Rating
1. Solid Hardwood Flooring710791043
2. Engineered Hardwood Flooring710891044
3. Strand Woven Bamboo Flooring810891045
4. Engineered Bamboo Flooring810991046
5. Laminate Flooring61087839
6. Vinyl Sheet Flooring610107740
7. Luxury Vinyl Flooring710108843
8. Ceramic Flooring710107741
9. Porcelain Flooring810109946
10. Cork Flooring510810841
11. Linoleum Flooring51089739
12. Natural Stone Flooring1091071046
13. Poured and Sealed Concrete Flooring109107743
14. Epoxy Floor Coating1010108745

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1. Solid Hardwood Flooring

PROS

  • Gives a warm and homey feel.
  • Warm to the touch.
  • Is protected from the occasional spills and splashes with the right surface finish applied.
  • Can be sanded and refinished numerous times.
  • It can increase your home’s resale value.
  • Is durable enough to withstand anything dropped on it.
  • Easy to clean.

CONS

  • Susceptible to damage if liquid spills are left standing for a long time.
  • Can accumulate scratches.
  • Can get stains if spills are left unattended for a long time.
  • One of the expensive flooring options for kitchen.
  • Prone to warping and buckling when exposed to high humidity.

Solid hardwood floors are a very popular choice among homeowners today. It’s not only used for kitchens but for practically any room in the house. It offers a warm and homey feel to any space which is why a lot of people tend to choose this flooring most often.

But is solid hardwood flooring good suitable for kitchens? Yes, solid hardwood floors are durable enough to be in a kitchen setting. It may have some limitations when it comes to moisture and humidity resistance, but with the proper care and maintenance, it can work out well.

A good finish, such as a polyurethane, should be applied to protect the hardwood floors from the occasional spills and splashes, scratches, and things that may drop in the kitchen. I have a guide on different finish options you can apply for hardwood floors. Click this link to go there.

It’s comfortable underfoot and retains heat well. It is very easy to clean as well. Usually, it only takes a quick sweep and a damp mop to keep it clean. You can follow this guide if you want to learn more about cleaning hardwood floors.

A well maintained solid hardwood floor will increase the resale value of your home. It is however one of the expensive flooring options for a kitchen but it can be a good investment if you plan on selling in the future.

Solid hardwood can get damaged though if the spilled liquid is left to stand for a long time. Although the topcoat finish will prevent any liquid from penetrating, spilled water, or any liquid unattended for a long time can penetrate through the cracks and seams of the hardwood, which can lead it to acquire stains, to warp or buckle. It is necessary to wipe off the floor dry as soon as it gets wet.

Water and moisture is the biggest threat to solid hardwoods. If it gets exposed to high humidity levels, or get soaked in water for a long time, it can swell, warp, and get heavily damaged. If you must use a hardwood floor but your kitchen gets humid or wet more frequently, then you might want to consider using an engineered hardwood flooring instead.

Solid hardwood will accumulate scratches over time. In kitchens, it is best to use the harder variants of wood such as cherry, hard maple, or oak. These variants can handle physical abuses better than the softer variants. Dropped kitchen cookware or utensils, or your pet’s nails can gouge or make a dent on softer wood variants, while on a harder wood type will not.

The best thing about solid hardwoods though is that it can be sanded and refinished multiple times, removing all the scratches and dents it accumulated, and make it look like brand new again.

2. Engineered Hardwood Flooring

PROS

  • Gives a warm and homey feel.
  • Warm to the touch.
  • Is protected from the occasional spills and splashes with the right surface finish applied.
  • Can withstand high humidity levels better than solid hardwood.
  • It can increase your home’s resale value.
  • Is durable enough to withstand anything dropped on it.
  • Easy to clean.

CONS

  • Susceptible to damage if liquid spills are left standing for a long time.
  • Can accumulate scratches.
  • Can get stains if spills are left unattended for a long time.
  • One of the expensive flooring options for kitchen.
  • Can only be sanded and refinished a few times.

Engineered hardwood flooring is very much the same as solid hardwood floors. It’s indistinguishable once it has been installed.

The difference is that the engineered hardwood floor is not entirely made of hardwood. It has a plywood core that makes it more dimensionally stable, and its top layer a thin hardwood veneer.

It looks exactly the same as solid hardwood flooring. It gives the same warm and homey feel. It has the same warmth and comfort underfoot. It is also as easy to clean as solid hardwood flooring.

The plywood core makes it more resistant to high humidity levels and will not easily warp or buckle as much as solid hardwood floors will. This is an especially good wood flooring option if your kitchen frequently gets humid or wet.

It is still susceptible to water damage if liquid spills are left standing on its surface for a long time, so you still need to be quick at wiping out spills to protect the floor.

A good hardwood floor finish is still necessary for added moisture and scratch protection. It will still accumulate scratches over time but you can sand and refinish it if it has already become dull due to the accumulation of scratches. Engineered hardwood floors can only be sanded and refinished a few times only though.

3. Solid Strand Woven Bamboo Flooring

PROS

  • Gives a similar warm and homey feeling as hardwood flooring,
  • Warm to the touch.
  • Rated as harder than hardwood flooring.
  • Can withstand high humidity levels. It is dimensionally stable.
  • Is protected from the occasional spills and splashes with the right surface finish applied.
  • It can increase your home’s resale value.
  • Cheaper than hardwood floors.
  • Easy to clean.
  • Can be sanded and refinished like hardwood flooring.

CONS

  • Susceptible to damage if liquid spills are left standing for a long time.
  • Can get stains if spills are left unattended for a long time.

Solid strand woven bamboo flooring is very much similar to hardwood floors. It doesn’t have the wood grain aesthetic of hardwood floors but it does look and feel similar. It also offers the same warm and homey feel a hardwood floor gives.

It is made from the fibers of bamboo compressed under extreme heat and pressure producing a very hard, solid, and dense material.

It is usually cheaper than hardwood floors but rated as harder. It’s a very good hardwood flooring alternative for your kitchen as it is harder and durable and doesn’t dent or get gouged so easily.

It is more dimensionally stable than hardwood floors. So for kitchen exposed to water and frequent moisture and humidity changes, strand woven bamboo flooring won’t swell, or shrink, and get damaged as easily.

It still is susceptible to water damage if spills are left to stand for a long time, but compared to hardwood floors, it is more water-resistant and can hold-out against water penetration for much longer.

It too can also be sanded and refinished, removing any accumulated scratches and making it look like brand new again.

4. Engineered Bamboo Flooring

PROS

  • Gives a similar warm and homey feeling as hardwood flooring,
  • Warm to the touch.
  • Rated as harder than hardwood flooring.
  • Is protected from the occasional spills and splashes with the right surface finish applied.
  • Can withstand high humidity levels. It is dimensionally stable.
  • It can increase your home’s resale value.
  • Cheaper than hardwood floors.
  • Easy to clean.

CONS

  • Susceptible to damage if liquid spills are left standing for a long time.
  • Can get stains if spills are left unattended for a long time.
  • Cannot be refinished.

Engineered bamboo flooring is pretty much the same as the solid strand woven bamboo flooring. The difference is in their structure. Solid strand woven bamboo is made purely from bamboo fibers while engineered bamboo flooring has a plywood base with its top layer, a thin veneer of strand woven bamboo.

Having a plywood core, it has more stability to its shape, allowing it to be produced with wider boards. The only reason you’ll choose an engineered bamboo flooring over a solid strand woven bamboo flooring is if you want a wide planks flooring look for your kitchen.

5. Laminate Flooring

PROS

  • Provides same look as hardwood flooring for less the cost.
  • High-end products look convincingly real.
  • Easy to maintain.
  • DIY friendly.

CONS

  • Can be slippery.
  • Cannot be refinished.
  • Color fades overtime.

A fraction of the price of hardwood floors, laminate flooring is durable enough for a kitchen floor. It is made with a high-density fiber core and a top with a photographic simulation of wood or stone, protected with a clear finish. High-end laminate flooring are almost indiscernible from real hardwood flooring.

It is easy to install and DIY friendly. You can even install it over an existing floor. Because of its tough outer finish, it is more scratch-resistant than real hardwood.

It is easy to clean and maintain but just take care not to get it soaked in water. Just like other wood flooring products, laminate flooring can only prevent water from penetrating for just a few hours. Once liquid gets in between the cracks and the seams, it will damage its wood core.

Some laminate flooring can be slippery, especially when they get wet. Some manufacturers have already developed products that have more traction and safer to walk on. So for kitchen, it is advisable to get a non-slip type of laminate flooring.

Laminate flooring will fade overtime although it will take about 15-20 years before it becomes noticeable. It can’t be sanded or refinished though, since the top layer is not actually wood. It is easy to replace one plank if it gets damaged, however if you have had the flooring for a long time, the color may have already faded a bit that a new plank will be noticeable.

6. Vinyl Sheet Flooring

PROS

  • Waterproof
  • Stain-proof
  • Easy to clean
  • Resilient and softer than hardwood to walk on.
  • One of the cheaper flooring options for kitchens.
  • Slip-resistant.
  • DIY friendly.

CONS

  • Does not increase home’s resale value.
  • Can accumulate scratches and become dull.
  • Can be repaired but repaired portion will be noticeable.

Vinyl sheet flooring is a good option for kitchens if you want an inexpensive, waterproof, stain-proof, and a non-slip floor.

Vinyl sheets are made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC), some type of plastic which makes it 100% waterproof. Even if it gets soaked in water for a long time, it will not warp, swell, or get damaged in any way. It comes in rolls and you’ll get very few seams when you have it installed.

As long as the seams are well sealed, you won’t have any problem with any liquid penetrating towards the subfloor. Cleaning it with a wet mop won’t be a problem.

It comes in a variety of styles and colors. It is resilient, giving a bit of a cushion to dropped cookwares or glasses in your kitchen.

It is not as scratch resistant as other flooring types, and scratches can accumulate over time making it dull looking, so a bit of extra care is necessary to prevent scratches from happening. There are higher priced vinyl sheets you can get that are more scratch-resistant than others if you want better protection.

Repairing vinyl sheets are easy if it gets gouged or torn accidentally since it’s one big piece. The problem though is that the repaired part may be noticeable. Working around with the surface design and patterns of the vinyl sheet may help hide the repaired part.

7. Luxury Vinyl Flooring

PROS

  • Waterproof
  • Stain-proof
  • Easy to clean
  • Resilient and softer than hardwood to walk on.
  • One of the cheaper flooring options for kitchens.
  • Higher-end products are scratch resistant.
  • DIY friendly.

CONS

  • Does not increase home’s resale value.
  • Not eco-friendly.

Luxury vinyl flooring comes in tiles and planks. They are another variant of vinyl flooring similar to vinyl sheets. Luxury vinyl flooring is one of the easiest to install flooring for your kitchen.

Since it’s vinyl, it is 100% waterproof and stain-proof. Very easy to clean and has a good traction for walking. It is also one of the inexpensive flooring option you can use for your kitchen.

Most luxury vinyl planks simulate the look of wood. High-end products look convincing as real wood flooring.

It can be used in heavy traffic areas and since it’s resilient, it can absorb the occasional drop of kitchen dishes or utensils. Most luxury vinyl flooring is made with high resistance to scratches making them last longer in a kitchen type setting.

Since its 100% plastic, they are not eco-friendly. If sustainability will be an issue for you, then this may not be a good option for you.

8. Ceramic Flooring

PROS

  • Waterproof.
  • Stain-proof.
  • High scratch resistance.
  • Easy to clean.
  • One of the cheaper flooring options for kitchens.
  • Will last for a long time with little change to appearance.
  • Available in multiple colors, styles, shapes, and sizes.
  • Durable for heavy-traffic areas.

CONS

  • Can be slippery when wet.
  • Could break when dropped with heavy and hard object.
  • Can be hard and cold to the touch.

Ceramic flooring are made from a mixture of clay minerals and water, then baked and heated to a hard and durable material. It comes with a glazed coating on top for protection against water penetration. The final product is a very durable flooring material that is impervious to water.

It comes in many shapes and colors. It’s commonly in tiles but planks are also available simulating wood or stone. As it is a lot cheaper, you can use this as a wood floor alternative. You’ll get somewhat of a wood looking floor but since ceramic flooring requires grout lines in between seams, the effect is less convincing.

Ceramic flooring can be a good durable option for kitchens. It is waterproof and stain-proof. Spills and the usual kitchen mess can be wiped with a wet mop. You won’t have to worry about it getting damaged from water. Just avoid using harsh chemicals on ceramic flooring as you can dull out its glazed finish.

It can be a bit slippery to walk on, especially when it’s wet so it’s still a good idea to wipe any spills or wet areas dry to avoid any accidents.

Ceramic flooring can still break if something heavy and hard falls on it, such as gym weights or equipment. Dropped glass dishes, utensils, and kitchen cookware though will do little to break it. If ever it does break, replacing a ceramic tile or a plank is relatively easy.

They can be hard and cold underfoot, especially during the winter season.

9. Porcelain Flooring

PROS

  • Harder and denser than ceramic flooring.
  • Better quality than ceramic flooring.
  • Better option for high foot-traffic than ceramic flooring.
  • Waterproof.
  • Stain-proof.
  • High scratch resistance.
  • Easy to clean.
  • One of the cheaper flooring options for kitchens.
  • Will last for a long time with little change to appearance.
  • Available in multiple colors, styles, shapes, and sizes.
  • Non-slip products are available. Slip-resistant even when wet.

CONS

  • Can be hard and cold to the touch.

Porcelain flooring is a better variation of the ceramic flooring. They are basically an upgraded version of ceramic flooring. They are made more denser and much more harder.

There are also better design and style options available for porcelain flooring compared to ceramic. Glazed and unglazed options are also available. The unglazed tile or flooring makes it suitable for kitchens that frequently gets wet. Unglazed tile or planks are non-slip and will give you better traction to walk on even when they’re wet.

It is more expensive than ceramic flooring but if you have an extra budget for it, choose porcelain instead of ceramic.

10. Cork Flooring

PROS

  • High moisture resistance.
  • Resilient.
  • High slip-resistance.
  • Warm, soft, and quiet to walk on.
  • A eco-friendly and sustainable flooring option.

CONS

  • Needs to be resealed every 3 to 4 years for scratch and stain protection.
  • Exposure to sun can cause discoloration.
  • Heavy furniture and equipment can cause indentations.

Cork flooring is processed from the bark of the cork oak tree. It is a very sustainable product; eco-friendly. It is also naturally water and moisture resistant.

It is a very good option for kitchens if you’re looking to use sustainable flooring. It gives very good traction because of its natural texture. It has high moisture resistance, and being resilient, is soft and quiet to walk on.

Cleaning it is also easy with a broom and a damp mop. Avoid soaking it with too much water though as it may swell with excess moisture.

It usually comes prefinished, giving it protection against everyday wear and tear. It also provides protection against staining. You would need to have it reseal cork flooring every 3 to 4 years to protect it from getting scratches and stains.

Heavy furniture and equipment could cause permanent indentations on the surface of cork floors though.

11. Linoleum Flooring

PROS

  • Resilient.
  • Soft, and quiet to walk on.
  • A eco-friendly and sustainable flooring option.

CONS

  • Susceptible to staining and damage if liquid spills is left to stand for a long time.
  • Low quality products can curl with high humidity.

Linoleum flooring is another eco-friendly option. It is comparable to vinyl sheets and sometimes can be confused to be one. It is made from a mixture of all natural ingredients such as ground cork dust, wood flour, and others. The final product is a resilient, moisture-resistant, and is durable enough for a kitchen floor.

Just like any other natural material, it is susceptible to staining and damage from waters and liquids. Though it has some protection, you still need to wipe any spills or splashes as soon as they happen.

For linoleum flooring, look for the high-end variants with better protection as lower quality products ten to curl up when exposed to high humidity.

12. Natural Stone Flooring

PROS

  • Very hard and durable.
  • Waterproof.
  • Will last decades.
  • Very luxurious looking.
  • Will increase your home’s resale value.
  • Stands up well to heavy foot traffic.

CONS

  • Rough textured stones may be difficult to clean.
  • One of the expensive flooring options for kitchen.
  • Needs to be resealed every 3 to 4 years for stain protection.
  • Is hard and cold to the touch.

Natural stone flooring is a mix of beauty and durability. It is one of the kitchen floor options that would last for decades. Natural stones are quarried from mountains and they are hard as a rock, ideal for high-traffic areas. They are also extremely moisture-resistant and will not get damaged even if it gets soaked in water for a long time.

There are a variety of natural stones that are available for you to use including marble, granite, slate, limestone, travertine, and sandstone. Each has their own set of characteristics in terms of hardness, look and appearance, texture, and cost. They are also available pre-cut in tiles or you can get them in big slabs and cut them to size on site.

They are one of the expensive options for kitchen floors but they add a look of luxury, which can also add to the value of your homes.

Depending on the finish of the natural stone floor you have installed, they can be easy or harder to clean. Smooth, glossy surface stones are very easy to clean, while rough textured stones tend to collect dust particles into its pores and crevices, making it harder to clean.

Although natural stones does not warp, swell, or break with water damage, they can acquire unsightly stains. They are naturally porous and liquid can pass through them, which is why they need to be sealed and resealed every 3 to 4 years to give them stain protection.

13. Poured and Sealed Concrete Flooring

PROS

  • Very hard and durable.
  • Waterproof.
  • Scratch-proof.
  • Will last a lifetime.
  • Stands up well to heavy foot traffic.
  • Easy to clean.
  • Inexpensive.

CONS

  • Needs to be resealed every 3 to 4 years for stain protection.
  • Is hard and cold to the touch.
  • Design style this can be used is limited to modern or industrial look.

Another hard and durable option is a poured and sealed concrete flooring. concrete floors will last decades of use. It’s an inexpensive option for a durable kitchen floor although the design styles you can use this for may be a bit limited. It is usually used for modern or industrial design style.

Although the usual look is a light gray smooth finish, it can also be polished in several ways, stained, or treated in a variety of ways to make it look more interesting.

14. Epoxy Floor Coating

PROS

  • Very hard and durable.
  • Waterproof.
  • Scratch-proof.
  • Will last a longtime.
  • Stands up well to heavy foot traffic.
  • Easy to clean.

CONS

  • Can be expensive to apply.

Epoxy floor coating is another hard and durable kitchen floor option you can use. It is liquid applied on top of an existing solid floor. You would need a skilled professional to apply this for you.

An epoxy floor coated floor is waterproof, scratch-proof, and will last for a long time. It’s a very good kitchen floor if you want a very low-upkeep floor. The initial investment may be a bit on the expensive side, but you’ll save up on repairs and maintenance since epoxy floor coatings are almost maintenance-free.

The design and look is endless. You can mix colors to create a natural stone look, or something modern and metallic.

Below is a video showing an example of how it is installed over a concrete floor.

Angelo

He is an architect for more than 20 years. He is passionate about design and architecture and enjoys sharing his knowledge and information with people as well.

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