12 Easy Kitchen Remodel Ideas on a Budget

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Is your kitchen looking dated, ugly, or just not functional? Then read on for 12 easy tips to remodel any kitchen on a budget!


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The kitchen is the heart and soul of every home.

It’s where delicious food is prepared, families join together for meals, days are discussed, holidays are celebrated, and everyday life events take place. 

If your kitchen is looking dated, no longer functional, or just plain ugly – then it’s time for a remodel and upgrade. 

upgrade your kitchen on a budget pin


When my husband and I purchased our new-to-us 1960s home, the kitchen needed a complete overhaul.

To say the kitchen was dated is a complete understatement.

The stove door was broken, the refrigerator was gross, it had no dishwasher, the cabinets were original 1960s dark wood, the cabinet pulls were gold and dirty, the cabinet liners were tattered and torn, it had a yellowing backsplash, and the countertops were fading and nicked up.

before upgrade kitchen on a budget picture


Since our move was expensive, we didn’t have a ton of money to throw at a whole kitchen remodel.

So, I set my sights on upgrading and remodeling my kitchen on a budget.


RELATED POST: Looking for fun kitchen decorating theme ideas? Check out this related post.



1: Pick the Best Kitchen Theme to Upgrade

The first thing my husband and I did when upgrading our kitchen on a budget was pick a theme.

There are many great kitchen themes, but we chose a wine/vineyard theme.

kitchen decor wine theme


With so many cute choices of kitchen towels, artwork, floor mats, and accessories – it was easy to purchase a ton of wine-themed kitchen items on a budget.

Kitchen Decorating Theme Ideas - Lobster


Besides a wine/vineyard theme, you could also consider remodeling your kitchen to have the following themes:



2: Start Painting the Kitchen Walls For a Fabulous Upgrade

Once you’ve selected the perfect theme for your kitchen remodel on a budget, it’s time to pull the idea together by painting the walls.

Since the wine/vineyard theme circles around the purple color scheme (and my kitchen is small), I chose light ivory and white to keep the room looking open and bigger.

Paint Choices for Upgrade


Depending on which kitchen theme you’ve chosen, there are so many great choices to paint the kitchen.

Some popular and trendy kitchen color paint ideas are:

  • Light grey 
  • Sage green
  • Blue/grey
  • Warm white
  • Soft pink
  • Taupe
  • Shiny black

Pro tip: Depending on the size of the room, select a lighter color that can either make the room look bigger or a darker color for a large kitchen to make it cozier.

3: Remodel Kitchen Cabinets the Budget-Friendly Way

Often, the main focus of a kitchen is the cabinets. If they are dated, an undesired color, or not functional – it’s time to upgrade them. 

If the cabinets are broken, old, or in bad shape – it’s time for a replacement.

kitchen cabinet repainting before and after


Although this is not a budget-friendly way of upgrading a kitchen, sometimes it’s necessary.

However, if the kitchen cabinets are in good, functional, and working order – consider painting them.

Painting is a wonderful, easy, budget-friendly way of renovating a kitchen.


RELATED POST: Need help with tips on painting your kitchen cabinets on a budget? Check out this related post for a step-by-step guide.



4: Upgrade Your Kitchen With Handle Pulls


One cost-effective kitchen upgrade idea is to replace kitchen handle pulls. This small upgrade makes a huge difference in the appearance of the kitchen.

When we finished painting our kitchen cabinets, we replaced all of the kitchen cabinet pulls with a satin/silver straight cabinet pull.

budget upgraded kitchen


Since we were replacing all the hardware, we bought a big box of cabinet pulls. This is handy since we have some leftovers in case one were to break in the future.

Some popular types of cabinet handle pulls are:

Best kinds of cabinet pull materials:


5: Upgrade Your Kitchen Quickly With a Budget Backsplash

Sometimes a simple kitchen backsplash upgrade can make an enormous difference to the space. 

I kept going back and forth on deciding on the proper backsplash for my kitchen renovation.

There are so many trendy, cool, and beautiful kitchen backsplash choices.

kitchen storage ideas


Popular kitchen backsplash materials trending include:

After selecting the material, decide on a theme:


Ultimately, I selected a budget-friendly, peel-and-stick subway tile in a warm white color. 

Applying peel-and-stick backsplash stickers are incredibly easy and budget friendly.

I really like the look of the kitchen backsplash and am happy with my choice. 


RELATED POST: If you are looking for a step-by-step guide on installing a peel-and-stick backsplash check out this easy-to-follow guide.



6: Upgrade Your Kitchen With New Countertops


Between preparing food, using appliances, cutting vegetables, and just everyday life, kitchen countertops can take a beating. 

There are so many popular choices to upgrade kitchen countertops including:

  • Quartz
  • Laminate
  • Granite
  • Butcher-block
  • Contact paper
  • Painting

Although quartz is my hands-down favorite choice, it was most decidedly out of our kitchen renovation budget. Someday, quartz will be my countertop, but in the meantime – I added contact paper.

budget upgraded kitchen


Since I was so impressed with how cheap and easy adding contact paper to my countertops was – I wrote a whole post on it. 


RELATED POST: Need a great guide on a DIY cheap countertop upgrade? Check out my detailed and easy-to-follow post.



7: Upgrade Your Kitchen Appliances For Function and Beauty

I mentioned earlier, that when we purchased our home, the appliances were terrible.

The stove door was broken, the refrigerator was disgusting, and the home was missing a dishwasher and microwave. 

The day after we got our house keys, we purchased all new appliances. This was, without a doubt, the most expensive upgrade we invested in for the new-to-us home.

kitchen storage ideas


We knew there were other kitchen upgrade areas we could save money on, so we purchased appliances that would last, were functional, and fit into our ideal style. 

After careful consideration, we chose a no-fingerprint, stainless steel collection from Frigidaire. At our previous home, we had the same set and absolutely loved it. 

Our Frigidaire set included a gas range, a refrigerator with a freezer on the top, and a dishwasher. 

Pro tip: Carefully select your refrigerator size around the area it will be installed. Measure for width, height, and ability to open and close doors. Since our kitchen is small, finding the perfect refrigerator was difficult.

In addition to stainless steel, there are several popular appliance colors:

  • White
  • Black
  • Off white

I love my stainless-steel kitchen appliance set, especially because it is fingerprint resistant.

I highly recommend checking the brand to ensure if you select stainless steel that it’s fingerprint resistant. 


8: Get the Best Window Treatments in the Kitchen

I love open and airy rooms. Before we moved into our home, we made sure all the window treatments were hung and upgraded.

The first thing I do when I wake up each morning is open the curtains and blinds throughout my home.

I enjoy beginning each day with sunshine and a blue sky. However, as soon as evening rolls in – I like my privacy and all my window treatments are closed.

budget kitchen upgrade appliances


At our previous home, we didn’t have the greatest blinds or curtains. It seemed like each morning one or more blinds were falling off the walls.

So, for this home – we invested in better window treatments. 

When it comes to the kitchen, there are several window treatments available.

From traditional to contemporary – every kitchen can find a perfect curtain. 


Some kitchen window treatments include:

Since the lighting fixture in our house was right above the window – we were limited in choices of curtains.

We opted for a simple white blind that can be easily opened and closed each morning and evening.


9: Upgrade to Fantastic Kitchen Lighting Fixtures

Lighting is key to any room – it can change the vibe and feel of the space. For an open, airy kitchen a lighting fixture can be a wonderful addition to any kitchen remodel upgrade.

There are countless choices when it comes to lighting fixtures for the kitchen – check out lots of in-store options or Amazon is a great resource, too.

Our home is very simple with a small dome light over the sink and a ceiling fan with lights in the main area. 

Depending on the theme and size of the kitchen – upgrading the lighting fixtures can be a wonderful addition to any kitchen renovation.


Some very trendy kitchen lighting fixtures for upgrades and renovations include:

Some very trendy kitchen lighting fixtures for upgrades and renovations include:


10: Get a Great Microwave or Wine Stand to Add Style and Function

Although some homes have a place for a microwave, our home was not one of them.

Since counter space is lacking, I didn’t want to take up a ton of needed area for a microwave. 

We invested in a decorative microwave stand/wine rack with added storage.

This metal and wood rack has been a wonderful addition to our kitchen as it provides added storage for my wine bottles, wine glasses, decorative items, and microwave.

upgrade kitchen remodel picture


At our previous home, we had a utility cart in lieu of a microwave stand – I absolutely love my new one as it does double duty as a wine rack and microwave stand.


11: Repaint Dated and Ugly Kitchen Furniture for a Budget-Friendly Option

I mentioned the main goal of our kitchen renovation was to stay on the budget-friendly side of things as we just incurred a ton of moving expenses. 

Although I love our kitchen table and chairs, they didn’t go with the new home theme. The legs were a dark wood color, and the new kitchen was bright and light. 

upgrade kitchen by repainting table and chairs before and after


So, instead of shelling out money, we weren’t ready to spend – I updated our kitchen table and chairs by painting them. 

If you want to do a simple, easy, budget-friendly DIY project to update your kitchen – paint the table and chairs.

It’s amazing how much such an easy project can transform a kitchen.


RELATED POST: If you aren’t sure how to paint your kitchen table and chairs, then check out this related post for my step-by-step guide from my upgrade project.



12: Anti-Fatigue Kitchen Mats Are a Great Upgrade Option for Function and Style


In addition to writing, ice skating, and swimming – I love cooking. The art of preparing a meal from scratch and trying new recipes is an absolute delight for me.

However, I don’t love being on my feet for several hours and the backaches that can follow.

We upgraded our simple kitchen mats to anti-fatigue kitchen mats and I’m loving the difference.

anti-fatigue budget kitchen mats


Anti-fatigue mats are so much easier on the joints, back, and overall body.

There are so many choices for anti-fatigue kitchen mats for any theme you may have selected.

In our kitchen, we upgraded to a simple grey and white long mat, with a matching solid grey mat. 

I seriously can’t say enough how much anti-fatigue mats make cooking in the kitchen a better experience. This is a fantastic kitchen budget upgrade.


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Final thoughts

Creating a budget kitchen remodel is a wonderful addition to any home.

My husband and I absolutely love the simple and budget-friendly upgrades we made to our kitchen.

From the bright countertops, the upgraded cabinets, new cabinet pulls, stainless steel appliances, new microwave/wine rack stand, and more – our kitchen is now complete.

Your turn!

What kind of budget kitchen remodel are you planning?

What kind of colors or upgrades are you thinking about trying? I’d love to hear from you in the comments.

27 thoughts on “12 Easy Kitchen Remodel Ideas on a Budget”

  1. These are some really amazing tips! I bet just painting the kitchen cupboards made a huge difference. I’m moving house soon and some of the kitchens in London are a bit dated – so will definitely be saving for then!

    1. It’s amazing what a little paint can do to transform the kitchen. Good luck with your move! Thank you for reading.

  2. I can’t wait to redo my kitchen but the prices went so high, it’s not worth to hire anyone to completely change the kitchen + waiting lists can take 1-3 years.

    1. Kitchen remodels are amazing. You’ll love the finished product! Thank you for reading!

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    1. Hi there!

      I’m glad you enjoyed the article and your kind words! Thank you for reading!

  4. Pingback: Install a Kitchen Peel-and-Stick Backsplash on a Budget

    1. Hi Pastor Natalie!

      Thank you for the compliment on the kitchen remodel ideas on a budget post.

      Thank you for reading!

    1. Hi Deanna!

      I’m excited you liked the easy kitchen remodel ideas on a budget post.

      Thanks for reading!

  5. I liked the photos and your detailed information on each section. Thank you!

    1. Hi Melissa!

      I’m excited you liked the kitchen remodel ideas and the photos and information.

      Thank you for reading!

      1. Your ideas for remodeling is helpful and you had provided a lot of options as well. These were just too good.

  6. thank you very much for these tips! been always wanting to remodel the kitchen somehow but don’t know where to start 🙂

    1. Hi Tweenselmom!

      There is so much involved with a remodel for sure. I hope the kitchen remodel ideas of a budget post helps you find a starting point.

      Thank you for reading!

  7. I’m excited to renovate our old Kitchen. It’s easy to fall into the trap of trendy designs but when you are trying to save a bit of money these tips are really helpful.

    1. Hi Beth!

      I enjoy a timeless style, too. Whether in the kitchen or another room – I enjoy updating, but try to pick something that will stay a long time.

      Thank you for reading!

  8. Kristy Bullard

    I desperately need to remodel my kitchen! It’s a lot of hard work but it’s worth it when you see the finished product.

    1. Hi Kristy!

      I know what you mean about hard work accomplishing a budget kitchen remodel. But – I love my finished room!

      Thank you for reading!

  9. We just installed a new cabinet in the kitchen. Well, my parents but would soon my partner and I will get our kitchen and home. These will be very helpful. Thank you for sharing!

    1. Hi Fransic!

      I hope your parents like their new update in the kitchen. Also, I hope you and your partner enjoy your future home and kitchen.

      Thank you for reading!

    1. Hi Ntensibe!

      I hope your kitchen cabinets come out great! That was one of my favorite parts to the easy kitchen remodel ideas on a budget post. I loved painting my kitchen cabinets and it made such a difference in the room.

      Thank you for reading!

  10. Neely Moldovan

    We’ve talked about doing a few of these ourselves! I hate our cabinet color

    1. Hi Neely!

      I know what your mean about hating a kitchen cabinet color. I couldn’t wait to paint mine when we moved into the home.

      Thank you for reading!

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