By Cora L. Diekman and Mackenzie Dunn

Published on May 17, 2018

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Photography by Aaron Bengochea

We have modern day go-tos. The textures, finishes, and furnishings that are perfectly on trend, and perfectly delightful. Marble is one of those essentials, and while we love entering a kitchen decked out with marble countertops (and brass fixtures to complement them!) other surfaces deserve the spotlight, too.

Not to mention, there are tons of other (potentially less costly) options that can still make a grand statement in your kitchen renovation. After all, this room is the heart of your home, so you’ll want to treat every aspect accordingly. Check out a few dozen of our favorite non-marble options for a creative take on your countertops.

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Photography by Sam Ushiro

Sam Ushinro of  the Aww Sam blog translated her signature pastel aesthetic into her rental’s kitchen thanks to a few strategic updates. The countertops are actually from a granite kit that “allows you to paint a new countertop and imitate the effects of having real granite. After putting a black base coat down, you put on three layers of mineral paints, and then finish with a clear top coat to give it the look you want.” See Sam’s full kitchen reno here.

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Photography by Gina Kim 

John and Gina of Leeward furniture executed their kitchen reno completely by hand. A custom job through and through, John innovatively mixed raw, reused oak counters with a simple white Corian for a truly unique, craftsman look. 

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Photography by DUSTIN WALKER FOR HUTCH

Why not match your countertops to your appliances?  Here, Stainless steel countertops in this LA townhouse compliment the appliances and matching open shelving. Silver cabinet pulls against pale teal cabinets bring the entire sleek look together.

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Quiet before the storm… #HappySunday

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If you love the look of terrazzo, you’ll love Icestone countertops. Made from recycled glass, this is a stylish sustainable option that will give you a truly one-of-a-kind look.

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Photography by FUCKYEAHINTERIORDESIGNS.COM

Nail the rustic-modern look with a distressed plank countertop.  Bonus: imperfections are the center of this material’s charm, so maintenance is a breeze!

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Photography by INTERIORCOLLECTIVE.COM

Yes, glass countertops are a thing.  They’re sleek, available in a rainbow of colors, and seriously easy to clean – no wonder they’re trending on the modern kitchen scene.

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Photography by VOGUE.COM.AU

Geology lesson – basalt is a volcanic stone that’s highly porous, though similar to granite.  And this stunning basalt countertop in cobalt blue suddenly has us rethinking the whole white-kitchen thing.

A paper countertop? Sounds crazy, but paper composite is an increasingly popular choice for counters as homeowners seek high-quality sustainable materials. Made from wood-based fibers, natural pigments, and non-petroleum-based resins, paper composite countertops (from companies like Paperstone) can come in just about any color you want, and they have the added bonus of being very durable.

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Photography by DESIGNSPONGE.COM

Concrete countertops are the latest kitchen craze, but you may not know that they’re not all one in the same.  This version, with a roughly troweled feel, imparts an industrial vibe.

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Photography by SARAH SHERMAN SAMUEL

Butcher block countertops are always in fashion, and add an organic feel to a kitchen that is missing with marble.

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Some midnight blues with @duratdesign

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If you want to make a colorful statement, Durat is the material you’re looking for. Made from postindustrial plastics, this eco-friendly option has a similar speckled look to Icestone, and is available in more than 70 colorways. 

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Photography by REMODELISTA.COM

Love the layers going on here!  A sheet of brushed stainless steel has been layered on top of an exposed edge of clear-sealed multi-ply plywood.  Consider this look when you crave an industrial vibe with a dose of character.

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Photography by @ICORIANNE

Nothing brings an organic touch to a kitchen like a live edge wood countertop.  Since these can be pricey, consider a smaller section of countertop like a raised bar, instead of a full kitchen.

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Photography by BEACHBLISSLIVING.COM

Create the beach cottage kitchen of your dreams with sand-blasted glass countertop in the most serene color of aqua blue.

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Photography by REMODELISTA.COM

Take a closer look – that chic countertop is actually made of plywood.  

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Photography by ABEAUTIFULMESS.COM

Butcher block countertops combine well with black cabinets in a space that’s balanced with bright and cheerful elements.

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Photography by TRENDIR.COM

If you dream in shades of pink, this pretty fuschia countertop is love at first sight.

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Photography by LIVESIMPLYBYANNIE.COM

Talk about bold design – black cabinets, brass hardware, and multi-toned butcher block countertops are nothing short of perfection.

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Photography by DEVOLKITCHENS.CO.UK

What could pass as concrete or granite is actually black soapstone – a natural material that has a milkier color than ultra-sleek granite or marble.  Consider soapstone if you’re craving a rustic addition to your kitchen that’s low-maintenance and resistant to staining.

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Photography by REMODELISTA.COM

Here, this counter may look like concrete, but it’s not. It’s an engineered quartz designed to replicate the look of concrete. Caesarstone or Silestone will have a variety of colors waiting for you. 

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Photography by BLOG.CLETILE.COM

Proving that everything old is new again, tile is making a comeback in kitchens craving a modern take on old-world charm.

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Photography by DUST JACKET VIA BLOGLOVIN.COM

Nail the rustic look with a combination of concrete and wood that’s somehow still very cozy and inviting.

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Photography by LAMAISONDANNAG.BLOGSPOT.SE

This kitchen has major appeal with its lovely combination of a Moroccan tile and industrial concrete.

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Photography by @MY.STYLE.CENTS

And finally, it’s not marble, it just looks like it. It’s Formica, if you can believe it! This once-retro option is making its comeback, offering easy-to-care-for counters in basically any design you can imagine. 

This story was originally published on August 8, 2016. It has been updated with new information.

See more creative countertop ideas:

Your Guide to Designing a Kitchen Using Concrete Quartz Countertops
18 Stunning Wood Countertops to Warm Up Any Kitchen
How to Hide Your Ugly Countertops

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