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Different Styles of Kitchen Cabinets

kitchen cabinet with kitchenwares

Thinking of updating your kitchen cabinets?

To help you decide which type of kitchen cabinets you want to go with, we’ll go over:

Need a quote to reface or remodel your kitchen cabinets? Contact us online or call (480) 641-9611, and one of our cabinet experts will give you an upfront, honest quote.

Common kitchen cabinet styles

The most common kitchen cabinet styles include:

  • Raised panel
  • Recessed panel
  • Slab or flat panel
  • Glass cabinets

We’ll go over each style in more detail.

Raised panel

granite counter reflecting kitchen cabinets

Raised panel cabinets have a center panel that sits at the same level as the frame, set apart by beveling or carving.

The carving or beveling on raised panel cabinets can be just as minimal or intricate as you want—from a single angled bevel to one, with lots of detail that looks like inverted molding.

Recessed panel

gourmet kitchen features white shaker cabinets

Like raised panel cabinets, recessed panel cabinets have a raised outer edge, but instead, the center panel is recessed to sit at a lower level than the edge.

Styles of recessed panel cabinets include:

  • Shaker cabinets: One of the most common styles of recessed panel cabinets. Shaker cabinets are characterized by their minimal five-piece doors and drawer fronts, which have a four-piece frame with a flat recessed center panel.
  • Molded recessed panel: These cabinets have decorative molding around the panel, almost like an inverted raised panel cabinet. The molding sticks out from the cabinet door and drawer fronts to give added texture.
  • Beaded recessed panel: This style has a center panel that features beading or patterned grooves going along the panel. Beading works with both molded and Shaker cabinet styles.

Slab or flat panel

contemporary kitchen cabinet ensemble

Slab panel cabinets have no raised or recessed panel—the door or drawer front is entirely flat.

Many homeowners prefer flat panel cabinets for a clean, minimal look.

Glass cabinets

kitchen cabinet with kitchenwares

With a glass center panel, glass cabinets allow you to show off your best dining and cooking ware.

Glass cabinets can have inserts that are:

  • Solid glass inserts (clear or frosted) with no design
  • Leaded glass with an intricate design
  • Glass inserts with decorative dividing bars (called Mullion panels)
  • Glass inserts that sandwich a wire mesh design

You can also install lighting inside glass cabinets to make glassware shine or make vibrant dinnerware pop for some added ambiance.

Center panel shapes

If you go with recessed or raised panel cabinets, you can choose from 4 different center panel shapes:

  • Square panel: Technically more rectangular, this panel shape is the same as the door or drawer front.
  • Arched panel: An arched panel will follow the shape of the door or drawer front on the bottom, left, and right sides, but the top part of the panel will curve upwards to create a subtle arch.
  • Cathedral panel: These panels are similar to arched panels, except the top part of the center panel has a more dramatic bell-shaped curve.
  • Multi-panel: This style has 2 rectangular panels instead of just one, featuring an additional frame that divides the center panel. The multi-panel design isn’t available for arched or cathedral panel cabinets.

Whichever cabinet style you go with, you have options for how they sit on the cabinet boxes.

Cabinet overlay options

You can choose from 3 ways the cabinet doors and drawer fronts attach to the cabinet boxes:

  • Full overlay: This style sits on top of the cabinet boxes and covers the box frame entirely. Slab panel cabinets often have full overlay doors and drawer fronts.
  • Inset: Inset cabinets actually sit inside the boxes to make the doors and drawer fronts flush with the box frame.
  • Partial overlay: Also called standard overlay or traditional overlay, this style has the doors and drawer fronts sit on top of the boxes, but they don’t cover the boxes completely (exposing 1–2 inches of the frame) as full overlay cabinets do.

Now that you have a grasp on different kitchen cabinet styles, let’s go over matching them to your kitchen theme.

Matching cabinet styles and themes

There isn’t a hard-and-fast rule for matching cabinet styles and themes, as you could make any style of cabinet work with any kitchen theme.

That said, many Arizona homeowners pair certain cabinet styles with certain kitchen themes:

This cabinet style:Works well with these kitchen themes:

Raised panel

Slab or flat panel

  • Ultra-modern
  • Scandinavian
  • Contemporary

Recessed panel

  • Transitional
  • French country
  • Retro

Glass cabinets

  • French country
  • Transitional
  • Farmhouse

Need some help with choosing kitchen cabinets? Visit our blog, “How To Choose Kitchen Cabinets.”

Ready to update your kitchen cabinets?

Schedule an appointment online or call us at (480) 641-9611 for an honest, no-obligation quote. We’ll give you a free in-home or virtual consultation, going over your options for different kitchen cabinet styles, and then give you a same-day quote. Our Phoenix cabinet experts will help you find the right kitchen cabinet style to suit your unique tastes and kitchen theme.

Chuck Derouen