Best Quality Countertops for Kitchens: Design, Materials, and Installation

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Finding a reliable supplier and installer of quality countertops is crucial in making sure that you get a professionally crafted kitchen that will last for years. But, knowing what countertop material is best suited for your lifestyle also plays a major role in the overall quality of your kitchen countertop.

So here, we’ve listed the best kitchen countertop materials you can choose from as well as a few important factors you should consider for countertop installation.

9 Best Materials for Kitchen Countertops

Are you wondering what are the best kitchen countertop materials that can meet your needs? Here are the most popular options you can choose from:

1. Granite

Dark granite kitchen countertop with white cabinets

Granite is among the hardest natural stones which makes it expensive. So, this would be worth considering if you want a luxurious but durable countertop when the cost isn’t an issue for you. It is perfect for big families that use their kitchen often, but you would need to reseal it regularly to ensure its longevity.

– Heat-resistant
– Extremely durable and strong
– Among the most heat and scratch-resistant materials
– Lots of types and color options
– Adds to the resale value to your home
– Almost maintenance-free
– Expensive
– Not for DIYers
– Imperfections in slabs
– Requires regular sealing to prevent stains
– You can cut on it but it can dull your knives
– Stress and improper installation can cause it to crack

2. Marble

White and brown marble kitchen countertop with dark cabinets

Marble is another popular natural stone used for kitchen countertops with entirely unique slabs. Oftentimes, it is used on kitchen islands because of its luxurious look, thanks to its remarkable vein patterns. However, it’s a softer stone so it’s less durable compared to granite and it is prone to scratching and staining. But with proper maintenance, it can wear nicely for years to come.

– Heatproof and waterproof
– Beautiful stone with unique veins
– Naturally remains cool
– Increased home resale value
– Expensive
– Develops a patina through time
– Not completely heat-resistant
– It’s porous, so it will easily stain when not sealed properly
– Not for DIYers
– Prone to etching and scratching

Read more about granite vs. marble countertops here.

3. Quartz

White quartz kitchen countertop in an all-white kitchen

The quartz material used for countertops is actually an engineered product created to look like natural stone but with better performance than marble and granite. Unlike natural stone, quartz is nonporous so it’s more stain-resistant and doesn’t require resealing.

– More color options than granite
– Nonporous surface for better scratch and stain resistance
– Doesn’t require polishing and resealing
– Some resemble natural marble with similar veining
– Easier to maintain as it’s more resistant to chemicals and cleaning supplies compared to marble and granite
– Uniform slabs
– Possible for DIY installation
– Expensive
– Very heavy
– Can get damaged when exposed to too much heat

Read more about quartz vs. granite countertops here.

4. Laminate

Laminate kitchen countertops with white cabinets

If you want more design flexibility, then laminates would be your best pick as they come in endless patterns and colors. Plus, they’re far more affordable options than the ones on our list. However, they can look ordinary to other people and are not as durable as other materials.

– Very affordable
– Endless colors and style options
– Easy maintenance
– DIY-friendly
– Visible seams
– Custom designs can add to the cost
– Not heat-resistant and can peel or chip over time

5. Ceramic Tiles

Light brown tile kitchen countertops with white cabinets

Ceramic tiles are the most popular tiles used in countertops. These options offer seamless counters that are easy to maintain and cheaper than natural stones. But, they will need re-grouting to keep them clean.

NOTE: Make sure to buy tiles that are designed for countertops or floors. Wall tiles are too thin and will crack when used as countertops.

– Heat-resistant
– Cheaper alternative to stones
– DIY-friendly and low-maintenance
– Comes in a wide range of styles and colors (can also mimic wood and stones)
– Requires regular re-grouting
– The grout lines are not stain-resistant
– Brittle and can crack under impact

6. Wood or Butcher Block

Butcher block kitchen countertop with black cabinets

The most notable feature of wood and butcher block countertops is that they can kill and stop the growth of harmful bacteria which is ideal for kitchens. They are great for those who want a more rustic look. However, you’ll need to seal them properly to make them more heat and water-resistant.

– Antibacterial
– Somewhat heat-resistant
– You can prepare food directly on their surfaces
– Offers a natural rustic look
– Hardwood can last for decades
– You can sand and reseal them
– Comes in wide planks for a more traditional look
– Fairly expensive
– Easily scratched
– Not stain and water-resistant
– It’s antibacterial but you still need to maintain it properly to prevent contamination
– Needs frequent oiling and sealing

7. Soapstone

Soapstone kitchen countertop with brown wooden cabinets

Another gorgeous natural stone, soapstone is a nonporous and dense material that can hold well against heat, acids, stains, and liquids. It’s often made in smaller pieces, so they are widely used for islands. Also, it has been used as an alternative to granite due to its thick white veins.

– Somewhat heat, stain, water, and acid-resistant
– Ideal for a historic-looking home
– Susceptible to dents and scratching, but you can easily buff them out with sandpaper
– Not for DIY installation
– Needs mineral oil treatment
– Darkens over time

8. Solid Surface

Solid surface kitchen countertop with brown wooden cabinets

Solid surfaces like Swanstone, Corian, and Avonite are artificial stones made from mixtures of natural materials and acrylic which make them highly scratch and stain-resistant. They’re very durable but cheaper alternatives to natural stones and are easier to repair when damaged.

– Cheaper alternative to natural stones
– Stain and scratch-resistant
– Invisible seams
– You can easily sand out burns and scratches and fill out gouges
– Matching solid-surface sinks are also available
– Moderately expensive
– Not heat-resistant
– Requires professional installation

9. Concrete

Concrete kitchen countertop with white cabinets

For those who want a more unique look, concrete would be a good way to go. They’re cheap (but not as cheap as laminates) and can also come in different colors and textures. But while they are durable, they stain easily.

– More affordable option
– Heat and scratch-resistant
– Can come in any color with decorative textures
– Stains easily
– Needs professional installation
– Can crack over time
– Needs regular sealing

Factors to Consider When Building Your Custom Countertop for the Kitchen

In addition, here are a few important factors that you should consider when choosing a countertop material:

  1. The color and design
  2. Shape and size of the material including the edge style and thickness 
  3. Ease of maintenance and durability (consider how you will be using the space)
  4. The overall ownership cost including maintenance costs
  5. Other accessories that should match the material like a backsplash

The Process of Installing Quality Countertops

When you partner with a countertop supplier and contractor, they can help you customize your dream kitchen based on your needs and budget. The general process of installing quality countertops goes through three main steps:

Step 1. Planning

The first step is thorough planning which includes an in-home visit and discussing your available budget and possible remodeling activities to create your dream kitchen. This also allows the installer to get a good idea of how you will be using your kitchen to ensure that you will have one that best suits your needs.

In addition, you can also visit your countertop company’s slab yard for you to see and compare your options.

Step 2. Design and Customization

The next step is design customization where the company will create a floor plan for your kitchen while incorporating your desired features including functional storage.

Step 3. Custom Fabrication

Finally, one-stop shops that also offer installation services will professionally install your custom-designed countertop.

Finding A Reliable Seller and Installer of Quality Granite Kitchen Countertops in Jacksonville, FL

If you are looking for a reliable installer of Jacksonville granite countertops who can do the job right, you can rely on A1 Stone World to get the finest craftsmanship you deserve.

We provide commercial and residential custom countertop installation services to help you create a kitchen that is built to last for years. We offer stone countertops including marble and granite slabs in Northeast Florida including Green Cove Springs, St. Augustine, Saint Johns, and Ponte Vedra Beach. 

Contact us now for a free estimate!


What is the strongest, most durable countertop?

Quartz is the most durable countertop option. It isn’t porous like natural stones which makes it easier to maintain and more resistant to damage. However, excessive heat can damage them.

How much do granite countertops cost in Florida?

Granite countertops can cost between $35 and $200+ per square foot.

Which is cheaper granite or quartz?

Quartz is about 20%-40% more expensive than granite on average based on per-square-foot price. But, other factors like installation can affect the overall price.

Final Thoughts

Remember, the material you choose is crucial if you are looking into creating quality countertops for your home. But aside from the material, make sure to also consider your lifestyle and your home’s overall design in your planning. More importantly, choose a dependable countertop seller and contractor to ensure that you get the results you want.

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