A tiled kitchen island is the perfect way to upgrade your kitchen in both style and functionality. We invite you to read our post and learn why ceramic tile is your ideal material for kitchen island surfaces plus learn to choose the perfect island tile for your kitchen.

Advantages of a Kitchen Island

Modernize your kitchen With a Tiled Kitchen Island
Prepare meals, work, and even entertain with the additional space that kitchen islands provide.

If you are considering adding a kitchen island, there are a lot of benefits are worth noting:

  • Additional counter space: Kitchen islands provide much-needed counter space for you to prepare and cook meals.
  • More storage: Choose a kitchen island with built-in shelves or cabinets to add to your kitchen’s storage space.
  • Varied seating options: Bar seating at kitchen islands gives you a less formal seating option in your kitchen. 
  • Defined space in open-concept layouts: If you have an open-concept kitchen and dining or living space, kitchen islands are the perfect way to define the kitchen area.
  • Entertaining focal point: The kitchen island is the perfect place to gather around when you’re entertaining. Everyone will have easy access to food and beverages set out on your kitchen island.
  • Design potential: As the focal point of your kitchen, the kitchen island is the perfect place to make a design impact. It also provides you with the opportunity to use multiple counter or cabinet looks in your kitchen.

Plus, minor kitchen remodels provide a greater ROI than midrange and upscale kitchen remodels (recouping 81.1% of your investment compared to 59% and 53.5%). So, a simple addition or upgrade of your kitchen island may be more valuable in the long run than a complete kitchen overhaul.

Ceramic Tile for Kitchen Islands

Low-maintenance care and versatile design options are a must when it comes to choosing a material for your kitchen island. Ceramic tile excels in both.

For example, ceramic tiles are scratch, stain and flame resistant. All of these qualities are incredibly important on a surface where vegetables are chopped, food is prepared, and hot pots and pans are placed. Plus, as an added bonus, ceramic countertops don’t require the regular sealing which can be necessary with granite and other porous surfaces.

In a time when hygiene is a priority, it’s also important to note that ceramic tile is incredibly easy to clean. Wiping with water alone is enough to tackle most messes. What’s more, tile does not contain or harbor allergens commonly found in indoor air and is resistant to mold, mildew, and bacteria growth.

Style options abound with ceramic tile.

While you can choose tiles of any size for your kitchen island, large format porcelain stoneware tile panels/slabs provide a seamless surface perfect for countertops. Achieve the look of marble, granite, wood, etc., with the added benefit of tile’s ability to create a unique kitchen island, with tiles in unique colors, shapes, patterns and even textures.

Kitchen Island Tile Ideas

Below are some of our ideas for creating a stunning island with ceramic tile.

Tile Top Kitchen Island

A beautiful place to use tile on your kitchen island is for the countertop.

The durability of ceramic tiles, their easy cleaning and low maintenance make them the perfect material for countertops. Furthermore, large-format porcelain tile panels/slabs enable you to use a single tile for the entire countertop. Which means you can easily create the look of any material, including magnificent white marble.

Modernize your kitchen With a Tiled Kitchen Island
Ceramic tile is a top choice for island countertops creating a waterfall effect, like this storefront countertop.

Kitchen Island with Tile Front

Kitchen island tile backsplash with a gray wood pattern
This kitchen island tile takes the cake in an already elegant kitchen.

The front or back panels of kitchen islands are prime ground for crafting a sleek design with tile, and – durability bonus – it protects the surfaces from kicking! After you see how attractive tile can be under kitchen islands, it may seem like a missed opportunity not to use tile there.

Mosaic Kitchen Island Designs

Mosaic is a creative option for kitchen island tile backsplashes (as it is for countertop backsplashes), and also for tiled kitchen island countertops, particularly when the kitchen island is being used as a design element.

Kitchen island with tile front in a blue pattern
A kitchen island tile backsplash is the perfect place to show off a creative tile pattern or mosaic.
Mosaic kitchen island countertops are a stylish way to enhance the design of your kitchen.

Kitchen Islands With Integrated Appliances

White marble-look tiled kitchen island with integrated appliances
Ceramic surfaces enable you to incorporate your household appliances directly into the tile of your kitchen island.

While some homeowners opt to leave their kitchen islands uncluttered for more countertop space, ceramic tile’s versatility allows you to integrate appliances directly into your tiled island.

That’ s a great option if your kitchen island happens to be the most convenient location for a sink or cooktop, or if you want to add a second appliance to your kitchen. For instance, some homeowners opt for a smaller secondary sink (sometimes called a prep sink) on top of their main sink for added functionality.

Plus, integrating appliances directly into the island tile creates a stylish, contemporary look.

Coordinating Your Kitchen Island Tile

However you are the one that decides to incorporate tile into your kitchen island, consider coordinating (or contrasting) it with the rest of your kitchen tile. 

For example, you can:

  • Use the same tile style throughout your entire kitchen, including your kitchen island.
  • Match your kitchen island tile with another tile application in your kitchen (see the photo above).
  • Use a unique style for your island tile that makes it the kitchen’s main attraction.

Tiled Kitchen Island Designs

You already have an idea of where to use tile in your kitchen island, but which style should you choose? Following are some of our favorite tiled kitchen island designs.

Granite-Look Tile Kitchen Island

Monochrome tiled kitchen island
A slate gray tiled kitchen island is the perfect complement to this white marble-look wall tile and flooring.

Granite is a popular look for kitchen countertops and islands. Large format porcelain stoneware panels/slabs are available in all types of granite looks, from monochromatic to highly decorative.

Marble-Look Tile Kitchen Island

Marble-Look Tile Kitchen Island
With large scale porcelain tile panels/slabs, you are able to cover the entire kitchen island with tiles, as well as other furnishing options.

Marble-look tiles are a trendy choice for tiled kitchen islands, making white marble-look tiles the most popular. Dark marbles, however, are equally suited to create a moody, theatrical, or more intimate feel in your kitchen.

Stone Tile Kitchen Island

Island Stone Tile / Stone Tile Kitchen Island
Ceramic tiles could help you achieve an outdoor kitchen that blends seamlessly into the exterior environment with a stone tile kitchen island.

For styles spanning from rustic to contemporary, stone-look ceramic islands bring warmth to your kitchen, both indoors and out. Match your kitchen island with a stone-look ceramic floor, such as the one pictured above, and you can bring the same look to your indoor living areas.

Coordinated Kitchen Island

Coordinated countertop and kitchen island tile
Coordinate this kitchen island with the cabinets, countertops, backsplash and flooring to unify the design of the room.

Because of the variety of tile styles available, your tile kitchen island can unite all the elements of your kitchen, while not compromising on style. Plus, you don’t have to worry about water damage, stains or scratches with ceramic islands.

Terrazzo-Look Kitchen Island

Terrazzo-Look Kitchen Island
The small additions of this kitchen island and backsplash creates a concrete look for this minimalist-industrial decor.

Terrazzo-look ceramic tiles incorporate speckles of different sizes, shapes and colors. Pick these speckles to match other colors throughout your project, add pops of contrasting color, or to add visual texture to your surfaces.

Tiled Island Shapes

Tiled Island Shapes
Colors and shapes can create a unique tile island.

Ceramic tiles are available in a virtually endless array of colors and styles, and in many different shapes. Shop ceramic tiles in the shape of a subway, triangle, hexagon, round, fan and many more.

Subway Tile Kitchen Island

Modernize your kitchen With a Tiled Kitchen Island
A pattern of stacked subway tiles on the kitchen island and backsplashes gives a well-ordered look to this colorful kitchen.

Subway tiles are a very popular tile choice, so it’s no wonder we also see kitchen islands with subway tiles. Subway tiles also offer a variety of installation patterns: stacked, offset and herringbone, to name just a few.

Tiled Kitchen Island FAQs

Can a kitchen island be tiled?
Yes, you can tile the countertop and sides of your kitchen island. Tiling the kitchen island is a smart way to protect the surfaces from damage and improve the design.

How do you tile a kitchen island?
You can tile your kitchen island yourself, depending on the size of the tiles, experience with installation and access to the right tools. For instance, tiling the front of the kitchen island with small tiles or mosaics would be similar to tiling a backsplash. But tiling the countertop of a kitchen island with large format porcelain tile panels or slabs requires professional installers. This is because of the size of the tile, which requires experience to handle and special tools to cut and install correctly.

Either if you decide to tile your kitchen island yourself or hire a professional, know that tile installations require skilled workmanship appropriate to your particular project for the installation to look and function as expected. This is particularly important for areas exposed to moisture.

Does a kitchen island go on top of a tile backsplash?
Yes, you can place a kitchen island directly on top of floor tile. Consult a professional who can determine if wood strips (cleats) need to be attached to the tiles to prevent the island from moving.

How do you tile around a kitchen island?
You can tile the floor around a kitchen island in the same way you would tile around walls and other obstacles. We recommend dry tiling around the island first. This involves cutting all the tiles (if necessary), laying them, and taking proper grout lines into account to make sure everything fits before installation.

Embrace (Kitchen) Island Life

Modernize your kitchen With a Tiled Kitchen Island

Now you know why kitchen islands can be an asset to your kitchen’s functionality and why ceramic tile is a versatile and stylish choice for kitchen islands. Only thing left is to choose the perfect tile for your island and your kitchen.

Author: Roxanne Morris

Renovate your Home with these tile tips room by room
The Height of Opulence: Unleashing Luxury Tips with Versace Tiles