The Very Best Before & After Kitchen Makeovers We Saw in 2020

updated Dec 22, 2020
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Before: beige kitchen with dark wood cabinets
Credit: Brooke Littel

Can you ever get enough before-and-after photos? If you’re reading this post, we’re guessing that answer is no! We agree with you. There’s something about the instant gratification of seeing a space transformed without having to do any of the waiting or heavy lifting that is just oh-so satisfying. And inspiring!

Here at Kitchn, we saw a lot of before-and-after kitchen makeovers this year. These are our 10 favorites from the entire year. Each one is as stunning as the last, with loads of design inspo and even a few budget ideas. Let’s take a look.

Credit: Carmen Lepp

1. A Brown Kitchen Gets a Farmhouse-Style Redo

This now-ultra-airy, vintage-inspired kitchen is a world away from the all-brown-all-the-time space the homeowners started out with. 

See the transformation: A Very Brown Kitchen Gets a Cute Farmhouse-Style Redo

2. A ’90s Kitchen Gets a Scandi-Boho Look for $2,000

This dated brown kitchen gets a dramatic new look and feel at a fraction of a typical kitchen reno. We’re not sure what we like best: the cabinet color, the shiplap, the woven accents … the list goes on.

See the transformation: This ’90s Kitchen Turned into a Scandi-Boho Dream for Just $2,000

3. A Gut Renovation for $10,000

A gut-job reno in only eight weeks and for $10,000? This determined homeowner made it happen, swapping a cramped and run-down kitchen for a timeless, super-functional one. 

See the transformation: A 1920s Home Finally Gets a (Gorgeous) Functional Kitchen

Credit: Suzy Jean

4. A ’90s Builder-Grade Kitchen Gets a Boho Upgrade for $100

Paint and creativity go a long way in freshening up a dark ’90s kitchen. You would never guess from looking at this before photo, but the after is totally something we’d stop to like on Instagram!

See the transformation: This Dark ’90s Kitchen Turned into a Boho Dream for Less than $100

Credit: Brooke Littel

5. A Builder-Grade Kitchen Gets Amazing Flooring and a Smart Paint Job

On only $3,000 (with a lot of elbow grease) a roomy — but not functional — dated kitchen got a whole new life. And a lot more usable space!

See the transformation: This Brown Builder-Grade Kitchen Is Unrecognizable After a $3,000 Makeover

Credit: Chase Daniel

6. A 1970s Texas Home Gets a Sleek, Modern Kitchen

This 1970s Austin home needed a lot of work all throughout. The kitchen probably needed the most attention and, now, it looks like a totally different space. It’s so sleek and modern now!

See the transformation: A Dated 1970s House Got a Jaw-Dropping Modern Remodel and the Kitchen Is the Best Part


7. A Splurge Reno That’s Worth Every Penny

A design blogger’s 1930s kitchen reno mixed traditional and modern for a deliciously luxe farmhouse appeal. It wasn’t cheap, but it was worth every penny.

See the transformation: This Modern Farmhouse Kitchen Remodel Wasn’t Cheap (but It Was Totally Worth Every Penny)

8. An Airbnb Kitchen Gets a French-y Boho Makeover

The unsightly mash-up of mid-century and mid-’80s in this ranch got a dramatic transformation for its new life as an Airbnb. 

See the transformation: This Kitchen with “Endless Knotty Pine” Gets a Gorgeous Refresh

9. DIYers Use IKEA Cabinets for a New Budget-Friendly Space

Thrifty DIYers transformed a kitchen with IKEA cabinets and a lot of creativity. And they did it all for just $3,000.

See the transformation: A $3,000 Kitchen Redo Featuring IKEA Cabinets and a New Farmhouse Style

10. A Dated Kitchen Gets a Trendy Update for $400

Fun fact: There is one color that’s extra-trendy for 2021 … and this updated kitchen features it prominently.

See the transformation: A Dim, Dated Kitchen Gets a Gorgeous DIY Makeover for $400

Which one of these makeovers is your favorite? Tell us in the comments below.