As woodworkers, most of us know how to build a cabinet using simple construction methods. Each wood that we use in making cabinets provide different unique qualities and appearances.
But selecting the best wood for cabinets is one of the toughest decisions you’ll have to make. When I was working on cabinetry, I was curious to know, The Best wood for cabinets.
I did some research and here’s what I’ve found:
Pine, Oak, Poplar, Hickory, Maple, Mahogany, Cherry, Ash, Beech, Birch, Walnut, Spruce, Douglas Fir, Alder, Bamboo, and Plywood are the best wood for cabinets. Most of the woods are perfect for cabinets as long as they support weight, are durable, functional, consist of good quality wood grades, and have an aesthetic look and style.
But there’s more to know before you’re selecting the right wood to use.
If you wish to display decorative items, should focus on the color and design of the wood. But if you’re willing to store heavy items, you need to focus more on strength.
In this article, we’re diving deep into the best wood for cabinets with the pros and cons of each wood, types of cabinets, and wood types that suit them perfectly.
I have answered some frequently asked questions as well.
Below I have discussed in-depth 16 best wood for cabinets.
Just keep reading!
I am awfully proud of this Little Free Library cabinet.— TARDIS Cabinets (@TARDIScabinets) September 23, 2018
I used kiln-dried Oak, Poplar, and Pine. Sealing all end grain while building. The cabinet is marine-grade Oak plywood.#TARDIS #DoctorWho pic.twitter.com/JZ8RWiJQDn
Pine is considered one of the best wood for cabinets because of its country, rustic appearance, and as a cost-effective option.
Pine wood cabinets are beautiful because of their soft amber color and smooth texture. The yellow hue of Pine wood adds a sunny, welcoming feel to the cabinets.
Pine is a softwood that is so much easy to work with. It is great for carving custom-made cabinets.
Therefore, if you’re a beginner in woodworking Pine wood is an excellent option for cabinetry. But on the other side, because of being so soft,
Pine is prone to dents and scratches. But that can be easily skipped if you maintain Pine cabinets properly.
Pine wood is easy to paint, stain, screw, and nail. The smooth texture of Pine wood holds paints so well.
If you keep Pine wood with a natural finish for so long, it’ll eventually turn into a beautiful patina that gives unique look to your cabinet.
Because of having good moisture resistance, both yellow Pine and white Pine are excellent for humid environments. Pine is good to use for bathroom and kitchen cabinets.
Pine has many distinctive knots that change the cabinet surface individually with other markings.
Therefore, when you’re selecting Pine for cabinetry, make sure to inspect for knots.
Pine wood is well worth the price. It is cheaper than Maple, Oak, Cherry, and Mahogany.
Undoubtedly Pine is one of the best wood for cabinets with a rustic, retro look I’ve ever worked with.
Fun little build, matte lacquer finish solid pine cabinet and drawers. #9drawer#furniture#noparticleboard pic.twitter.com/EhiRAzAvr9— Jonathan Hutton (@Jonatha60905477) March 27, 2022
Pros and Cons of Pine as A Cabinet Material
|High workability||Poor durability|
|Easy to paint and stain||Need high maintenance|
|Beautiful rustic, country appearance||Susceptible to dents and scratches|
|Lightweight||Tear up easily|
|Resistant to swelling and shrinking|
|Has good moisture resistance|
As you can see there’re lots of advantages of Pine for making cabinets than its disadvantages.
Cute little pine cabinet, with two cabinets, shelving, and pine beadboard backing. A swivel tv top and some stain and the project will be finished. pic.twitter.com/BKyr3pYav5— SCE (@SCE_Paddington) January 17, 2021
Oak is a wonderful choice for cabinets. It has a beautiful wood grain that adds a unique appearance to your cabinets.
Oak woodgrain feels so warm and cozy.
Oak cabinets don’t get old easily. They give a country, modern, farmhouse look to your cabinets.
Oak is a hardwood with excellent compressive strength, flexural strength, and hardness.
Therefore, Oak cabinets are extremely sturdy, strong, and durable. Not like Pine, Oak has good resistance to scratches and cracks.
It can easily withstand abuse without losing its dimensional stability.
Because of being so strong and heavy, Oak cabinets can hold heavyweights. You can place heavy items in your Oak cabinets with no worries. Repairing Oak cabinets is also easy by sanding the chipped or damaged area.
Plus, Oak wood has good water resistance and can be used in humid environments like kitchen cabinets and bathroom cabinets.
Therefore, Oak is great as kitchen and bathroom cabinet material.
Oak is easy to stain and seal. It is a customizable solid wood with long-lasting capabilities. Because of being water-resistant, durable, strong, and hardwood, Oak can easily last for many years.
Plus, Oak doesn’t contain harmful chemicals and it is an eco-friendly option.
There’re main 2 types of Oak we use for cabinet making. They are,
- Red Oak
- White Oak
Let’s see how useful Red Oak and White Oak are as cabinet materials.
Finally finished my wall cabinet— Eido (@ItsEido) May 18, 2022
Primary wood is ash
Secondary is poplar
The back is made of red oak and white oak pic.twitter.com/jIIOO06HXw
Red Oak for Cabinets
Red Oak is excellent for cabinets. It has high hardness, according to the Janka hardness scale, Red Oak has a hardness rating of 1260 lbf.
Because of being so hard, Red Oak has high resistance against wear and tear. Red Oak has pink undertones that add uniqueness to your cabinets.
But, because of this pinkish undertone, Red Oak cannot be stained with white, grey, or light color stains. Pink color will peel off.
Red Oak has a deep color that won’t produce brighter color like White Oak. Red Oak is great for traditional interiors. If you’re into classical home stylings, Red Oak is the best wood for cabinets.
Check out this beautifully crafted Red Oak TV Cabinet we made! 🪵📺— Skokie Millwork (@SkokieMillwork) April 4, 2022
Note: ‼️We do not finish or install‼️#wood #woodworking #handmade #woodwork #cabinets #woodfurniture #architecture #woodworker #woodworkingcommunity #skokiemillwork #smallbusiness #cnc #redoak #skokie pic.twitter.com/WEAX84bsag
White Oak for Cabinets
White Oak has high durability than Red Oak. Therefore, with little maintenance, White Oak cabinets easily last over decades. White Oak is harder than Red Oak with a hardness rating of 1360 lbf.
White Oak is rot-resistant. Therefore, it is useful as outdoor cabinetry material.
Most people love the light color appearance of White Oak, and they only apply natural stains over White Oak.
Painting White Oak is considered a waste because White Oak is beautiful on its own.
Staining White Oak is so simple and easier than staining Red Oak.
Because of having a gentle look, White Oak is great for modern interiors. White Oak is one of the best wood for cabinets.
Both Red Oak and White Oak are excellent options to use for cabinets.
But as per my experience, White Oak is slightly better than Red Oak in cabinetry because of its high strength and durability.
Nice corner TV cabinet made from solid white oak by Ethan Newcomb. Features dadoed shelves, frame and panel doors, gunstock stain and lacquer finish. A lot of hard work here…excellent job! pic.twitter.com/ACfg7hRih0— Carson Cabinetmaking (@JCHS_Cabinet) March 24, 2018
Pros and Cons of Oak as A Cabinet Material
|Sturdy||Heavy and difficult to move|
|Excellent strength||Darken over time|
|Easy to finish and stain||Expensive|
|Withstand heavy loads||High tannin content|
|Wear and tear-resistant||Difficult to cut and screw|
|High dimensional stability|
|Easy to repair|
|Need less maintenance|
Poplar is one of the best paint-grade woods for cabinets. It is affordable and so easy to cut and mill. The Uniform texture of poplar adds a unique appearance to your cabinets.
Even though poplar is a hardwood, it belongs to the soft hardwood family that softer than most the woods.
Therefore, nailing, and screwing with poplar is easy and it has high workability. Poplar is great for beginners in woodworking as well.
If you’re willing to paint the cabinets, Poplar is the best option for you. It takes paints so well and able to get any color you wish.
The colors of poplar cabinets vary widely, and it doesn’t look great with the natural finish.
But on the other hand, poplar is extremely porous and sOaks up paints like a sponge. An additional primer is required to control the absorption rate.
Poplar does not take stain well because of the nature of its fiber structure. If you use stain on Poplar cabinets, make sure to follow the correct procedure without ending up with a random blotchy, dull surface.
Poplar has poor dent resistance and applying a sealer, or any other protective layer is a must to last long your cabinets for years.
Poplar has poor dimensional stability because of its less dense annual rings.
Because of having a weed-like fiber structure, poplar tends to warp, and twist with environmental moisture and humidity. Therefore, Poplar is not good for bathroom cabinets.
Make sure to sand poplar with fine-grit sandpaper, because poplar tends to fuzz up during sanding.
Another style Jewelry Cabinet from the first shown in this thread. mostly Poplar and Oak. The back opens as well. For necklace storage. ▶️ pic.twitter.com/XvpES4gYq3— TARDIS Cabinets (@TARDIScabinets) March 6, 2020
Pros and Cons of Poplar as A Cabinet Material
|High workability||Poor weather resistance|
|Easy to paint||Poor water resistance|
|Affordable||Poor dimensional stability|
|Lightweight||Susceptible to dents and scratches|
|Uniform texture||Too soft|
Most of the above disadvantages can fix with a good primer or sealer. Other than that, poplar has exceptional qualities to use as a cabinet material.
Hickory has a natural contrasting appearance with a wide range of colors from white to reddish-brown. Therefore, you can easily match the color of Hickory cabinets to other furniture.
Hickory is stronger, tougher, and harder than Maple and Oak. It can hold heavy items without wear and tear. With its flame-like grain pattern, It gives a country, casual look to the cabinets.
Even though Hickory is a hardwood with extreme strength, it has poor water resistance.
Therefore, Hickory cabinets cannot be placed in a humid environment like a bathroom. Hickory for bathroom cabinets is not recommended.
Hickory is having high availability and it is easy to stain in a variety of colors from dark to light colors.
It has poor resistance against scratches and marks. Therefore, Hickory cabinets need high maintenance.
Cleaning with mild dishwashing detergent soaked in warm water is recommended to keep Hickory fresh and new.
For cleaning, never use harsh chemicals that contain silicone or bleach.
Because of having high compressive strength, flexural strength, and hardness, Hickory poplar for cabinets. But it is expensive.
Making a hickory bathroom cabinet #woodworking pic.twitter.com/DmBJPXpYM9— Adam Larson (@adamwlarson) January 27, 2019
Pros and Cons of Hickory as A Cabinet Material
|Easy to paint||Poor water resistance|
|Easy to stain||Susceptible to insect attacks|
|Wear and tear-resistant||Susceptible to dents and scratches|
|Beautiful appearance with a variety of colors|
Maple is a hardwood with smooth wood grain and a non-porous fiber structure that is widely used for cabinets.
Maple is a tough and durable hardwood. Painting and staining Maple wood is so much easier than most other wood because of its great qualities. Therefore, Maple cabinets can be colored in any color you wish.
If you maintain Maple cabinets with proper care and regular maintenance, they will easily last over decades.
It is a customizable wood versatile wood that can be changed as we want.
Maple cabinets can color lighter or darker and can give a modern or classical look. Simply there are no exceptions in using Maple as a cabinet material.
Maple is cheaper than Cherry or Walnut. it is affordable and well worthy for the price. High availability, durability, and high versatility make Maple wood one of the best for cabinets.
Maple cabinets can get yellow with age due to the high exposure to the UV rays.
Therefore, make sure to apply stain, sealer, or any other protective layer that gives UV protection and protects your Maple cabinets from yellowing and damage caused by UV rays.
There’re mainly 2 types of Maple that we commonly use for cabinets. They are,
- Hard Maple
- Soft Maple
Just saw the most amazing home for sale in San Francisco. Big open floor plan, sliding doors, maple built in cabinets everywhere. What a dream. pic.twitter.com/t08PSJ191L— Edwin de Jongh (@edwin_de_jongh) March 14, 2021
Hard Maple is an extremely hardwood with a Janka hardness rating of 1450 lbf. Cabinets that are made of hard Maple withstand against abuse and are resistant to dents and scratches.
Hard Maple shows burn marks and it has a smooth surface. Your woodworking tool needs to be well sharpened before working with hard Maple because it can fuzz with less sharp edges.
Hard Maple has the following qualities that are really important in making cabinets,
- The great natural beige appearance
- Superior hardness
- Easy to clean
- Withstand against the high force
- Eco friendly
My cabinets are almost done. I found some beautiful hard maple to build the tops. What do you all think? I still need to put the back molding on but other then that they are good to go! pic.twitter.com/rJQe6Sj1N3— Joey V (@JoeyV2988) September 4, 2021
Soft Maple is also a hardwood with a Janka hardness of 950 lbf which is harder than Alder, Mahogany, Elm, and poplar.
Soft Maple tends to get a blotchy surface when staining than hard Maple.
Therefore, you should apply a pre-stain wood conditioner first before applying a stain on soft Maple cabinets.
It is a paint-grade wood with lots of unique qualities.
Overall, both hard Maple and soft Maple are excellent for cabinets.
Walnut cabinet with spalted soft maple book-matched and grain-matched doors and drawer fronts. pic.twitter.com/tv5Mb6iW4I— Rich Wanket (@RichWanket) December 12, 2019
Pros and Cons of Maple as a Cabinet Material
|Easy to stain and paint||Can get yellow when get exposed to the sunlight over years|
|High durability||Susceptible to insect attacks|
|Versatile hardwood||Poor wear and tear resistance|
|Resistant to warping and shrinkage|
Mahogany is a kind of luxury type wood for cabinets because of its straight wood grain, great strength, and expansiveness.
Not many people use Mahogany for cabinets because of its less availability and high cost.
but Mahogany is one of the most beautiful woods for cabinets. It has a deep red color surface that glows when polished well.
Because of having straight grain and a glossy surface, you don’t need much wax to enhance its appearance.
The shine that Mahogany gives after polishing it up and cared for with regular maintenance,
can’t achieve with any other wood.
Simply, Mahogany is a type of wood that hard to be replaced and cabinets made from Mahogany are so simple to identify because of the highlighted qualities and appearance.
Mahogany is a hardwood with great strength and high durability. It is rot-resistant and lasts over decades with proper maintenance.
Mahogany gets deeper and darker color with age. Most people appreciate the rich look of Mahogany which add a new feel and look to your cabinets.
You can add finishes to get the darker color sooner. Mahogany is one of the best wood for cabinets.
1930s Art Deco cocktail cabinet, the flame mahogany cabinet with built in record player, radio, speaker, record cupboard and drinks cabinet with chrome fittings. pic.twitter.com/eBTN30tXqx— Madman In A Blue Box~BLINK AND YOU’RE DEAD (@AnOldLefty) May 30, 2022
Pros and Cons of Mahogany as a Cabinet Material
|Need less maintenance||Expensive|
|Strong and sturdy||Hard to find|
|Rich reddish-brown color||Darken over time|
|High water resistance||Difficult to handle|
|Easy to paint and stain|
Cherry wood adds a unique aesthetic look to your cabinet. It has a beautiful reddish-brown texture with a closed-grain wood structure.
Woodgrain is diverse, and you can find many pins, curls, and knots in Cherry wood.
It is a traditional type of wood, and you can get a classical appearance with Cherry cabinets. But because of being a highly versatile wood, Cherry can be customized for modern homes as well.
Cherry gets darkened over years with the exposure to sunlight. So, make sure to apply stain, sealer, or any other protective layer that has sunblock agents to prevent the wood from getting darkened.
Staining and painting Cherry wood is so much easy and you can easily get a smooth finish as you wish with less wood finishing mistakes.
Therefore, even if you’re a beginner in woodworking, Cherry is a great wood to start your journey because of its friendly features.
Cherry cabinets look warm and inviting. Glazed Cherry cabinets are able to give traditional look while protecting the darker stain.
When the Cherry wood gets darkened with age, it will shine more due to the reddish undertones. It is one of the best wood for cabinets.
Cherry has high workability. It has excellent gluing, nailing, polishing, and screwing properties that are important in cabinet making.
Ramon and Shirley are well chuffed with their new haberdashery cabinet, all that’s left to do is fill it. 🐑— Gabibo Craft (@GabiboCraft) January 24, 2021
I made it from cherry wood, all the drawers are fully functional. 😀#handmade #HandmadeHour #UKCraftersHour pic.twitter.com/GjuJhpH3aq
Pros and Cons of Cherry as a Cabinet Material
|Excellent finishing properties||Expensive|
|Lightweight||Poor resistance against dents and scratches|
|Give a nice rich look with age|
|Beautiful reddish brown smooth texture|
Ash is one of the best affordable options for cabinets.
It is evergreen and can be customized as we want to enhance its appearance and wood grain. it is aesthetically pleasing and excellent for cabinets with beautiful designs.
Ash is so strong, and it can hold heavy items without getting cracked or chipped. Because of its heavyweight handling capabilities, Ash can use for any kind of cabinet.
Staining, painting, and sealing Ash wood is so easy.
It gives an attractively unique appearance with a proper finish. If you pay more attention to detail, Ash is the wood for you.
Ash has shock resistance. If your Ash wood cabinets got hit hard because of heavy items, most of the shock force will absorb by the wood itself and protect from splitting and cracking.
Even though most the hardwoods are heavy and difficult to move, Ash is surprisingly lightweight and can handle easily to make and carve shapes without any issue.
No harmful chemicals release by Ash wood and it’s an eco-friendly option.
Finally finished my wall cabinet— Eido (@ItsEido) May 18, 2022
Primary wood is ash
Secondary is poplar
The back is made of red oak and white oak pic.twitter.com/jIIOO06HXw
Pros and Cons of Ash as a Cabinet Material
|High hardness||Need high maintenance|
|High durability||Flammable than most woods|
|Strong and sturdy||Susceptible to insect attacks|
|Easy to paint and stain||Less availability|
|Can be installed in larger spaces due to its high elasticity|
|Beautiful light color and wood grain|
|Able to hold heavy items|
Beech is one of the best hardwoods that is widely used for cabinetry. Beech belongs to the high-quality grade in the cabinet industry.
Beech has a beautiful texture and a more subtle grain. Painting and sealing are also easy with Beech because of their great finishing properties.
If you’re a beginner in woodworking, that look for hardwood to build a cabinet, Beech is one of the best wood cabinets you should go with.
Woodworking tools work well with Beech wood by making clean cuts and accepting stains.
You can give Beech cabinets any color you wish because it allows you to achieve your favorite style cost-effectively.
The only downside of Beech wood is its heaviness. Other than that, Beech is strong, rigid, and provides an elegant look to your cabinets.
Because of being hardwood with exceptional compressive and bending strength, Beech cabinets can hold heavy items without chipping, cracking, or damaging the wood itself.
Beech wood has no moisture resistance as many other hardwoods, therefore, before placing a Beech cabinet in a humid environment, make sure to paint, stain or seal the wood properly.
Otherwise, moisture can cause Beech wood to warp and twist.
Beech and glass display cabinet for the fishing heritage centre in grimsby made in our workshop pic.twitter.com/GaI30sz9mw— Paul Andrew chalk (@chalkey1973) February 18, 2021
Pros and Cons of Beech as a Cabinet Material
|Strong||poor moisture resistance|
|Easy to paint and stain||Heavy|
|Shock resistant||Susceptible to insects and pests|
|Able to hold heavy items|
Birch is an excellent wood for cabinets with high durability and high tensile strength. It has a light brown or golden color that adds an aesthetic appearance to your loving cabinets.
For kitchen cabinets, Birch wood provides a modern, farmhouse, contemporary look.
Birch wood has a porous fiber structure. Therefore, it can easily absorb stains and turn into your desired style. It is easy to paint, stain and seal because of its great finishing properties.
As per my experience, Birch looks great with lighter wood stains which make the surface uniform and smooth. Because darker mix of wood stains may lead to discoloration and unevenness of the wood.
But on the other hand, Birch has an uneven texture that can easily get blotchy when applying stain.
Therefore, applying a pre-stain wood conditioner is a must when staining Birch cabinets to avoid random blotches and streaks.
Birch wood has excellent resistance against dents and scratches. Therefore, with little maintenance, Birch wood cabinets will last for years.
It is one of the most durable wood options for any kind of cabinet including kitchen cabinets, and bathroom cabinets.
Overall, Birch is a popular wood for cabinets due to its high versatility and availability.
It is less expensive and provides excellent qualities that make it well worth the price. Overall, Birch wood is best for cabinets.
Here is a 3/4″ Baltic Birch and Sapele cabinet ( that I built with a friend) that resides in the Denver Woodcraft classroom. pic.twitter.com/mPBDxMQb08— My Favorite Wood Shop (@FavoriteWood) January 4, 2020
Pros and Cons of Birch as a Cabinet Material
|Easy to stain and paint||Uneven texture can result in a blotchy surface|
|Dent and scratch-resistant||No moisture resistance|
|Less expensive||No weather resistance|
|Modern look||Crack and warp easily in dry conditions|
|High workability||No shear and wear resistance|
|Natural decay resistance|
Walnut is commonly used to make custom-quality cabinets. It is a hardwood with a high Janka hardness rating of 1,010 lbf which is higher than most other woods.
Because of being hard and dense, Walnut is extremely durable and has good resistance against dents and scratches.
Therefore, Walnut cabinets and tables are able to hold heavy items without chipping or cracking the wood. Walnut is the best wood for cabinets.
Plus, Walnut has good water resistance as well. Therefore, it can use to make bathroom cabinets.
But I highly recommend using protective sealer because wood is wood, and they aren’t water-resistant as artificial materials.
You can wipe Walnut cabinets without any fear of causing water damage or impurities. Therefore, keeping Walnut cabinets clean is so much easier than Birch wood cabinets.
Walnut is able to give luxurious look to your cabinets because of its fine wood grain and most importantly it has intricated grain style and dark color swirls of color that cannot be found in any other wood that use for cabinet making.
These stunning features make Walnut cabinets highlighted and unique.
Staining and painting Walnut is easy because of their great finishing properties. It gives a rich, warm look with natural stains.
Walnut cabinets turn into lighter colors with age. It creates a beautiful look for home interiors.
The start of my new extra large spice cabinet. Can’t wait to use this so I can stop using a cardboard box to hold all my spices.— crossley_hardwoods (@crossleyhw) May 11, 2022
.#walnut #brass #woodwork #woodworking #handmade #kitchen pic.twitter.com/78P2x9PQsv
Pros and Cons of Walnut as a Cabinet Material
|Easy to stain and paint||Expensive|
|Eco-friendly option||Difficult to install|
Spruce is a sturdy softwood that best wood for cabinets. It is a straight grain wood with a high hardness value. Therefore, Spruce cabinets are mostly used in shops and garages.
Spruce is lightweight, but it has one of the highest strengths to weight ratios among many kinds of wood.
Therefore, Spruce cabinets are extremely strong despite being lightweight.
Spruce cabinets have a modern pleasing look because of their creamy white color.
Because of having smaller knots compared to wood types like Pine, Spruce has higher dimensional stability and can use as industrial cabinet material.
Spruce cabinets are durable the wood is so easy to work with.
Even a beginner in woodworking can use Spruce to learn cabinet-making techniques because of its user-friendliness.
Finishing and gluing Spruce is easy, and it takes stain so well. Therefore, you can protect Spruce cabinets from water damage especially if you’re working on a bathroom cabinet application or outdoor cabinet.
When you’re using construction lumber, kiln-dried woods are only dried with 12% -15% moisture content.
Furniture-grade lumber is dried with 5% -8% moisture content. Therefore, make sure to bring wood to your woodworking area at least a couple of weeks before using it.
🔥 In da shop today! 🔥— ArtMakerOfWoodStuff (@ArtisticVibes2) September 23, 2020
Making some knotty spruce replacement shelves for a customers existing cabinet. (Yup we do that too) 😎👊🇺🇸
Natural stain and getting a few coats of satin finish. Then on to some floating shelves. Busy busy 🐝 pic.twitter.com/S0Utf3SD7Z
Pros and Cons of Spruce as a Cabinet Material
|Lightweight||No decay resistance|
|High flexibility||Less durability|
|High strength to weight ratio||Susceptible to insect attacks|
|Easy to stain and paint|
|Attractive uniform texture|
13. Douglas Fir
Douglas Fir is an intense solid wood that is popular in cabinet making. It is softwood but sturdy because of its fiber structure.
Douglas Fir is mostly used for kitchen cabinets. It is fire resistant and can withstand the heat produced in the kitchen. It is the best wood for cabinets in the kitchen.
In terms of durability, Douglas Fir is not durable as hardwoods. But with proper finishing and regular maintenance, Douglas Fir cabinets will easily last over years.
Nailing, screwing, and gluing Douglas Fir is easy because of its high machinability. Even a beginner in woodworking can learn cabinet making with Douglas Fir.
Douglas Fir has a light brown color that varies on its age. It has a straight grain pattern with medium to a coarse texture that adds a unique aesthetic appearance to your cabinets.
Ultimately, Douglas Fir is a perfect choice for cabinets. It is a lightweight softwood with moderate workability.
DOUGLAS FIR. Its appearance is prized for joinery, panelling,— American Softwoods (@ASoftwoods) August 17, 2020
cabinets, flooring, windows and cladding.
Its strength, straightness and ease of fabrication make it the perfect high performance timber for structural uses,
framing, bridges and large heavy members. pic.twitter.com/h6cEbZZfvW
Pros and Cons of Douglas Fir as a Cabinet Material
|Versatile||Poor rot resistance|
|High flexibility||Low hardness|
|Affordable||Not durable as hardwoods without proper finishing|
|Chemical-free||Susceptible to insect attacks|
|Decay resistant||Need regular maintenance|
If you’re looking for wood for cabinets, with properties of both hardwoods and softwoods, Alder is the best wood for cabinets you should go with.
Because even though Alder belongs to the hardwood family, it is extremely soft and has high workability with woodworking tools.
It is a durable wood with straight grain and a uniform smooth texture which adds a unique feel to your cabinets.
Knotty Alder is popular among woodworkers for cabinet doors because it has a rustic natural beauty that enhances the quality of the woodwork.
Alder is an attractive wood with many finishing options. Alder cabinets can be designed to match your kitchen, office, dining room, or bathroom.
But because of being too soft, Alder is prone to wear and tear. It has poor scratch and dent resistance.
Therefore, better not to place heavy items on Alder cabinets because they can cause wood chipping and cracking.
Staining and painting Alder wood are so much easy. It will stain evenly without making random blotches and streaks.
But if you notice blotches in Alder wood surface after staining, better to sand it down and apply pre-stain wood conditioner first and then go for the staining part.
Knotty alder cabinets going in, getting closer to moving!! pic.twitter.com/dCdyAMpAO8— Casey Schuhmacher (@cowbroker) August 2, 2018
Pros and Cons of Douglas Fir as a Cabinet Material
|Beautiful appearance||Prone to scratches and dents|
|Easy to stain and paint||Poor hardness|
|High workability||Too soft|
Bamboo is extremely strong with high compressive and tensile strength. It is one of the most trending woods for cabinets.
It has superior strength to weight ratio. Therefore, it’s so strong for its weight. It can be considered the best wood for cabinets.
Bamboo has high structural integrity, and it is able to withstand high stress. Therefore, Bamboo cabinets can hold heavy items without chipping or cracking the wood.
Bamboo has high resistance to dings, chips, cracks, and splits.
It has a unique straight grain with distinctive knuckles and nodes. It is softer than most hardwoods but in terms of strength, it’s unbeatable.
In terms of appearance, Bamboo provides a natural warm fresh look to your cabinets with a neutral hue. It comes in white and honey colors.
Bamboo is easy to stain. It takes stain so well and mostly water-based stains go well with Bamboo.
The wood itself is resistant to dents and scratches. Therefore, the durability of Bamboo cabinets is quite high.
Bamboo is an affordable option for woodworkers with a tight budget. With all the excellent qualities Bamboo is well worth the price.
Usually, Bamboo is stronger than most hardwoods and softwoods.
- Bamboo is 38% stronger than Douglas Fir
- Bamboo is 109% stronger than White Pine
- Bamboo is stiffer than White Pine
Here’s an elegant grey/bamboo kitchen with cabinets from our friends over at Homecrest Cabinetry! Homecrest can fit any budget and is a line you should always keep in mind when thinking about a kitchen remodel! #cabinetry #kitchendesign #interiordesign #kitchenremodel pic.twitter.com/QthMUf1F7z— Silver Lake Cabinetry (@SLCabinetry) November 18, 2021
Pros and Cons of Bamboo as a Cabinet Material
|Versatile||Susceptible to deterioration|
|Strong||Different quality variations|
|High durability||Hard to work with|
Nowadays there are houses, where all the kitchen furniture, cabinets, and bathroom furniture are constructed with Plywood. Plywood cabinets are extremely durable and strong as solid wood cabinets.
Sometimes stronger!. It is one of the best wood for cabinets.
Plywood is popular for frameless cabinets which are trending across Europe. Plywood cabinets are not only used for house interiors but also for construction purposes.
Cabinet-grade Plywood contains twice the number of plies, a super smooth finish, and good lamination.
Because of having a protective layer and a high number of plies, Plywood cabinets are string and have good resistance against scratches.
It is lightweight and easy to install. Therefore, there’s very less possibility of going in the wrong direction in handling and installing Plywood cabinets.
Birch, Pine, and Maple Plywood are not recommended to stain. They are difficult to stain and have a high possibility of gaining random blotchy surfaces and streaks.
They are so hard and dense. Stain pigments are hard to penetrate through those kinds of woods and difficult to give even tone across the Plywood.
Make sure to check the following factors before choosing the best Plywood for cabinets.
- Flatness of Plywood
- Edge thickness
- Graining pattern
- Avoid subgrade core materials
- Look for curves
Printer room joinery #birchply #plywood #joinery #bespoke #cabinet #cabinetry #commercial #commercialjoinery #officejoinery #printerroom #handmade #lacquered #sprayfinished #mymorrells #westsussex #brighton #eastsussex #hampshire #surrey #londonPrinter room joinery #birchply… pic.twitter.com/bXkZD8IE1k— The Wright Joinery Company (@WrightJoineryCo) October 7, 2019
Pros and Cons of Plywood as a Cabinet Material
|High stiffness||Less durability|
|Comes in many sizes and thicknesses||Susceptible to water damages|
|Extremely strong||Difficult to sand and paint|
|Able to cut in any shape|
That’s it, folks!
Now you know the best wood for cabinets. Now, let’s go into detail and answer some frequently asked questions about the best wood for cabinets.
What is the Best Wood for Kitchen Cabinets?
The best wood for kitchen cabinets is as follows,
Above woods, work will with kitchen cabinets giving exceptional qualities.
Hickory Cabinets. White Quartz. White Subway Tile Backsplash (w/ black grout). Gray Walls. White Trim…EXACTLY what I wanted & I’m OBSESSED with it! It’s so satisfying when it comes out just like how you imagined it in your head! #1869OctagonFarmhouse #BaltierraFarm #RenoAddict pic.twitter.com/NaXBzag7qs— Tyler Baltierra (@TylerBaltierra) April 23, 2018
Best Wood for Painted Cabinets
- Soft Maple
- Hard Maple
Above woods are so strong and have great hardness to use for painted cabinets. Wood glue works well on painted surfaces as well. So, no worries!
Did I cover all you wanted to know about: Best Wood For Cabinets?
In this article, we’ve deeply discussed the 16 best wood for cabinets by taking their properties, qualities, pros, and cons.
We have discussed why those woods are considered the best wood for cabinets and how their unique qualities are important in cabinet making.
As you can see almost all the wood is best for cabinets if you treat them well with regular maintenance. With proper finishing and woodworking techniques, you’ll be able to make any wood strong enough to use as cabinet material.
Furthermore, I’ve answered some frequently asked questions about the best wood for cabinets with examples.
Hope you have gained good knowledge about woods that use most for cabinet making and why are they so special.
Now let’s work on your cabinet-making project with all the gathered information from this article. Have fun in woodworking!
1 thought on “16 Best Wood For Cabinets in Mar 2023 (Updated List!)”
I love Douglas Fir for kitchen cabinets. We had ours for years, and they are still looking great.