5 Best Finish for Inside Kitchen Drawers

Last Updated on March 9, 2023 by Claire

If you’re looking to spruce up your kitchen drawers and give them a fresh new look, you need the best finish for inside kitchen drawers. The right finish for the inside of your drawers can make a big difference to your kitchen space. From functional to fashionable, there are plenty of options to choose from.

Best finish for inside kitchen drawers

best finish for inside kitchen drawers

The selections were carefully made by experts who understand kitchen needs, such as the need for a luxury touch for a premium kitchen. Even the look and feel of a impacts the chef’s performance. Below is the 1best finish for inside kitchen drawers:

  1. Minwax 356050000 One Coat Polyurethane

At first, our team of experts was skeptical about reviewing this product due to some of the mixed reviews it had gotten.

But it turns out it does work as advertised. The Minwax 356050000 is indeed quick drying and allows for quicker finishing. Normally I’d use 2-3 coats of polyurethane for the finish, but I tried this and got excellent results with just two coatings.

The only downside is that you really have to be fast and precise when using this product because touch-ups will stick out like a sore thumb.

Product manufacturer: The Sherwin-Williams Company


  • Excellent results consistently
  • Gets the job done fast
  • Dries very quickly
  • Affordable


  • Not as rough as the oil-based stains
  • Not self leveling

Proceed to buy now before it runs out of stock.

  1. Shellac Flakes Blonde Shellac Finish

Now here’s a product that works, especially when used correctly. Using dewaxed shellac might be a little challenging, but you will be proven wrong.

After mixing with alcohol, I got great results after applying it to my wood drawer surface.

Although there were quite several flaws with this product, such as how fast it dries, the most suitable temperature range, and the end results. It’s still a great product and worth every penny you spend on it.

Product manufacturer: Fabbay


  • Gets the job done fast
  • Super affordable
  • Easy to apply


  • You need to take a lot of precautions when using it
  • Results aren’t consistent
  • Can be a little challenging to use particularly if you’re a “first-timer”

Overall: one of the best finishes for inside kitchen drawers for your money out there.

  1. Promise Epoxy – Clear Table Top Epoxy Resin

The Promise Clear Table Top Epoxy Resin is great for wood finishes, but not particularly strong for bonding things.

While you really can’t go wrong with the mixing ratio, you must remember that it can take quite a bit of time to set up and dry. This could be a pro or con depending on the particular job at hand.

The finishes were excellent and there was no noticeable drop in quality at all.

One major downside is that the product quantity might not be suitable for commercial applications due to its small size. Other than this,  it’s great value for money.

Product manufacturer: Pro Marine Supplies


  • Great product for the money
  • Relatively affordable
  • Easy to apply


  • Product packaging pour spouts could be better
  • The small size of the product makes it only suitable for use in domestic applications
  • Takes a bit of time to set up and dry

  1. OAIEGSD 32 OZ Waterproof Tung Oil for Wood Finishing

Tung oil is one of my favorites for oil finishes, and one of the best finish for inside kitchen drawers. So when I had an opportunity to review the OAIEGSD 32 OZ Waterproof Tung Oil, I didn’t flinch.

The finishes and feel were excellent, it brought some beautiful features of the wood I never noticed to life. It was almost like a wood ‘renaissance’ of sorts!

It was also very forgiving as it allowed my “untrained hands” to get away with their mistakes. There were no brush marks, stains, or blemishes in the finished job.

The only downside I noticed is that it takes a little longer to dry out compared to other brands.

A great product that represents excellent value for money.

Product manufacturer: Ayueni


  • Easy to set up and use
  • Very forgiving
  • Consistent results
  • Offers protection


  • Takes a little longer to dry out compared to other brands.
  • The “bundled-in” paintbrush isn’t up to snuff

OAIEGSD 32 OZ waterproof tung oil for wood finishing is really worth the money—go for it.

  1. Tried & True Stain + Finish – Golden Oak – Gallon – Natural Stain & Oil Finish

Tried & True has always been one of my favorite finishing brands. I especially loved the fact that this product had very little inherent odor, which meant no toxic headaches.

This stain is quite thick, so it goes a long way. I was able to coat a door with it, and I still had 2/3rds of the can left.

The Tried & True Stain + Finish gave my job a nice undertone that I liked.

While I must confess that Tried & True could do a better job of indicating the product’s color palettes online (it’s not as good as what’s seen in pictures online).

Nonetheless, the Tried & True Stain + Finish is a great product that’s worth its weight in gold.

Product manufacturer: Tried & True


  • Thick texture allows you to do more with less quantity
  • Excellent finishing results every time
  • Easy to clean
  • The product has very little inherent odor


  • The color undertone to finishing could be better
  • Relatively pricey

Go ahead and buy now with confidence. It’ll revive the look and feel you need for your kitchen drawer interiors.

Read also: did you just see maggots on your kitchen floor?

What finish to use inside drawers?

You want a finish that has little inherent odor when dry, like shellac, lacquer, and waterborne finishes, according to Fine Woodworking. Below is the best finish you need for your kitchen drawer inside.

  1. Polyurethane

Polyurethane is a popular finish for kitchen drawers due to its durability and resistance to scratches, stains, and moisture. It’s a fantastic solution for busy kitchens because it’s also simple to maintain and clean.

You may choose a polyurethane coating that suits the general design of your kitchen thanks to the multitude of finishes that are offered.

  1. Shellac

Shellac is a natural resin that has been used as a finish for furniture for centuries. It’s a fantastic option for DIY projects because it’s simple to apply and dries rapidly.

It also contains antibacterial qualities that help keep your kitchen drawers hygienic and clean. However, alcohol and heat can harm shellac, making it a poor choice for drawers intended to keep hot objects or alcoholic beverages.

  1. Epoxy

Epoxy is a strong and durable finish that can withstand heavy use and resist scratches, stains, and moisture. It’s also easy to clean and maintain, making it an excellent choice for busy kitchens. 

However epoxy can be a little difficult to apply, so it’s best to leave it to the experts or people who have experience with DIY projects.

  1. Tung oil

Tung oil is a natural oil that is often used as a finish for wooden surfaces. It provides a pure and natural matte finish that highlights the elegance of the wood grain.

Tung oil is water-resistant and easy to maintain, which makes it an excellent choice for kitchen drawers. You only need to make sure you use high-quality tung oil in order to get the best results.

  1. Paint

If you want to give your kitchen a splash of color or design, painting is a wonderful option. Just remember to use durable and easy-to-clean paint like enamel.

  1. Oil-based stain

An oil-based stain is a great choice for a natural wood finish. This type of finish penetrates the wood, brings out the natural beauty of the grain, and also offers greater protection against scratches and stains.

The only downside is that it can be a little tricky to apply properly, so you must adhere to the manufacturer’s instructions to get the best out of it.

  1. Melamine

Melamine finishes are ultra-durable and resistant to moisture. This synthetic material is produced when paper or fabrics are bonded to a resin or plastic substrate, thus creating a smooth and hard surface that is perfect for kitchen drawers.

Melamine is also available in a wide range of colors and patterns, so you can pick a finish that suits you.

  1. Water-based finishes

Two things that set water-based finishes apart are their durability and eco-friendliness.

These coatings are low in volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and simple to clean up because they are created from acrylic or polyurethane resins that are suspended in water.

One thing to keep in mind with water-based finishes is that they have the potential to elevate the wood’s grain, so you may need to sand your drawers before applying the finish to get a smooth surface.

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What to keep in mind when choosing a finish

Here are a few considerations to keep in mind when choosing a finish for the inside of your kitchen drawers:

a. Durability

You should pick a finish that is durable and able to endure the wear and tear that comes with regular use. After all, nobody is interested in refinishing their kitchen drawers every few months.

b. Ease of maintenance

Over time, kitchen drawers can become quite dirty, so you want a finish that can stand up to frequent wiping and cleaning without getting damaged or discolored.

Hence, it’s advisable to choose a finish that is easy to clean and maintain.

c. Aesthetics

You need to consider aesthetics when choosing a finish for your kitchen drawers. In order words, how nice it looks.

Although the inside of your drawers might not be the most visible part of your kitchen, it’s still nice to have a finish that looks good and complements the overall style of your kitchen space.

So, it doesn’t matter whether you prefer a natural wood look or a pop of color, there’s always a finish out there that’s sure to meet your needs.

d. External factors

Although external factors such as temperature, humidity, ease of access to kids, and others aren’t the most important considerations you need to keep in mind when choosing a finish for your kitchen drawers, they still influence how well your finishes turn out to be.

Here’s why:

For example, if your kitchen tends to be particularly humid or prone to rapid temperature changes, you’ll want to choose a finish that can hold up under those conditions.

Similarly, if you have little children or pets that might scratch or damage certain finishes, you’ll want to factor that into your decision-making process as well.

How to apply the finish inside your kitchen drawer

Here are some tips to apply the finish correctly for a lasting result:

  1. Start by using 120-grit sandpaper to sand the interior of the drawer; this will smooth out any wood flaws and make it easier for paint or stain to adhere.
  2. Use a clean, damp towel to remove the sanding dust.
  3. You can now apply your preferred finish.  If you’re painting, use a paintbrush or roller made specifically for furniture, if you’re staining, use a cloth or brush.
  4. Once the finish is applied, allow it to dry completely before using the drawer again. Depending on the type of finish, normally it takes at least 24 hours to dry out.


What finish paint for inside kitchen cabinets?

There are many different paint varieties, but semi-gloss, gloss, or satin paint work best on kitchen cabinets. In bathrooms and kitchens, matte is not a practical choice because you will need durable paint you can easily clean.

Should I paint the inside of my kitchen drawers?

Yes, you should consider painting the inside of your kitchen drawer if it has any weird or unpleasant stench. A good odor-killing primer along with a few coats of paint will do the magic.

Do you finish the inside of drawers?

Yes, it’s best to finish the drawer interiors to seal and smoothen the wood surfaces that will come into direct contact with clean clothing or your kitchen gizmos.


This wraps it up for the best finish for inside kitchen drawers. All in all, no matter which finish you choose, just remember that your kitchen is a reflection of your style and taste.

So, whether you decide on a sleek and modern look or a more rustic finish, choose something that makes you happy and reflects your personal style.

Who knows, you might just discover a finish that you love and want to use throughout your entire home.