Stainless Steel Countertops Pros and Cons: A Comprehensive Guide

By Artem Kropovinsky, Interior Designer and Founder of Arsight |
December 26, 2023

A peek into new kitchen trends reveals high demand for stainless steel kitchens. It is a professional’s choice, and people are falling in love with the metal countertops for their hassle-free maintenance. Whether it’s a commercial space or a home, stainless steel kitchens are the best pick. Homeowners are keen to learn about it to guide their decisions about home renovation projects.


How to Install Stainless Steel Countertops in Your Kitchen?

Once you are convinced about installing stainless steel countertops in your kitchen, you must be aware of all the specifics. It’s a professional’s job so you can seek help from Arsight – a world-leading interior design firm. However, if you have experience handling metals, it can be your DIY project. Below are the steps to install:

  • Take exact countertop measurements 
  • Use professional equipment to cut the stainless steel material in the mentioned size 
  • Join the sub-structure to your base cabinet
  • Install the countertops and the splashboard

What are the different categories of Stainless Steel finishes?

While you would love your new stainless steel kitchen look, you also have the choice to opt for the best finish that matches your taste.

Brushed Look

It features a directional grain that resembles a wood finish. A brushed look is commonly re-created on kitchen appliances and can match your countertops.

Mirror Finish

If you love reflective surfaces, then opt for the polished and glossy mirror finish.

Matte Finish

Some people like dull surfaces, as they are more presentable. Watermarks and fingerprints will not be visible.

What is the Cost of Stainless Steel Countertops for the Kitchen?

The price of stainless steel countertops is mainly influenced by the variety and customization. However, the cost range is 80 to 225 USD per sq. foot. The cost of premium variety like prefabricated stainless steel countertops ranges from 1200 to 2700 USD. Customization may add to the cost, however, the standard price for material and labor is 70 USD to 160 USD per sq. foot.

Are Stainless Steel Countertops Durable?

If you are eager to install the most durable stainless steel countertop, you may opt for the thick gauge variety. It is resilient and will hardly dent. Thicker stainless steel features better quality and higher price. 16-gauge min steel is ideal for residential kitchens; however, 14-gauge is better for commercial purposes.

How to Maintain Stainless Steel Kitchens:

Stainless steel countertops are easy to maintain and can last for decades with proper care. You can also hire a professional to seal the metal to make it scratch-resistant. Moreover, cleaning stainless steel countertops is not complex. You will require a soft microfiber cloth or sponge for the purpose. A damp sponge can wipe off the dust layers, water stains, and fingerprints. However, you can use a mild soap solution to clean spills and stains.

What are the Pros and Cons of Stainless Steel Countertops?

Your kitchen remodeling project requires careful consideration, so you must explore the stainless steel countertops' pros and cons to make the best decision.

Highly Durable

The best reasons to choose stainless steel countertops are their durability and usability. Even rough use will make it last for decades. The smooth surface does not stain, nor allow germs and microorganisms to grow. Regular cleaning and maintenance will make it the most hygienic surface, ideal for cooking purposes.


Stainless steel countertops feature class and sophistication and can add great value to your interiors. Moreover, stainless steel material is easy to customize in any size or dimension. However, this is not true for other materials such as natural stones. The reason is that metal is a highly flexible material and can be molded as per requirements.


Distinct Look

Stainless steel countertops are distinct and perfect for traditional and modern-day kitchen designs. It is the best option if you want a monochrome interior look. Moreover, stainless steel is a reflective material that can make your compact spaces look spacious. Proper lighting and modern aesthetics will be a perfect combination.

Matthew Williams


A majority of the metals rust when they come in contact with moisture, but this is not true for stainless steel.

Pia Ulin

No Fear of Burning

Unlike wooden countertops, stainless steel will never catch fire. So, it’s a very safe option for kitchen countertops.

Stainless Steel Countertops Cons

Prone to Scratching

Though, stainless steel countertops are one of the best options for kitchen remodeling. However, it may scratch easily, and there is no way to repair it.


Low-grade stainless steel can easily dent and destroy the kitchen ambiance. However, if you hire a skilled professional for installation, they can help you deal with the problem. Experts usually layer metal with wood to minimize the denting effect. Also, opting for a lower gauge steel number will make your kitchen last for a lifetime.

Responsive to Temperature

Stainless steel being a metal, is responsive to external temperatures. It may become very hot or cold depending on the surroundings and might be challenging to handle.


If you love quiet spaces, then stainless steel surfaces are not for you. Stainless steel kitchen countertops can create unnecessary noise while you cook, or place utensils or food items. It will surely disturb your peace.


A stainless steel kitchen is becoming the preferred choice for people due to its incredible features and versatility. However, you must evaluate it with other available options to make the best decision. Zinc is also an option for countertops, but it does not promise a pretty look. Else, copper is also a choice for metal countertops, but very expensive and not worth the price. Though, granite is a good alternative but requires proper maintenance and a hefty installation budget.

Artem Kropovinsky is an author, interior designer and the founder of Arsight, a globally award-winning design firm based in New York. With over decade of experience, Arsight specializes in complex projects, including new constructions, complete residential renovations, restaurants, and retail stores.