The Easiest Way to Paint Your Kitchen Cabinets (No Sanding!)

Have you been dreaming about giving your kitchen cabinets a fresh new look, but the idea of all the mess, chaos, and effort involved in such a big project is holding you back? Well, I...

Have you been dreaming about giving your kitchen cabinets a fresh new look, but the idea of all the mess, chaos, and effort involved in such a big project is holding you back? Well, I have some exciting news for you!

Introducing the simplest and fastest way to paint kitchen cabinets, without wreaking havoc on your home. With this method, you can transform your kitchen without the need for sanding or extensive preparation. It's a game-changer!

The Best Method for Painting Your Kitchen Cabinets

You may be familiar with the traditional way of painting kitchen cabinets, which involves a lengthy and detailed process. However, after receiving countless inquiries about an easier method, I decided to find a solution. I even went so far as to purchase a new house with outdated oak cabinets just to satisfy your curiosity. That's how dedicated I am to providing you with the best options!

After experimenting with a new product and a completely different process, I am thrilled to share with you the new and improved "best" way to redo your kitchen cabinets. This method is faster, easier, and considerably less messy. While the previous process still yields excellent results, if you're looking for a quicker turnaround, this is the approach for you.

Update: After living with my newly painted cabinets for several years, I can confidently say that this easier method holds up just as well as the previous one. So, you're not compromising on quality by choosing this faster option. In fact, it has become my preferred way to paint cabinets!

Everything you need to know about painting cabinets, all in one handy ebook. With 2 worksheets to help you get started! Everything you need to know about painting cabinets, all in one handy ebook. With 2 worksheets to help you get started!

DecoArt Satin Enamel Cabinet Paint

In the past, painting cabinets or furniture required laborious stripping, sanding, and prepping. But now, thanks to DecoArt's Satin Enamel paints, all that is a thing of the past. With this innovative product, you can simply clean the surfaces, apply a primer if needed, and start painting.

A Kitchen Cabinet Painting Hack

What's even more fantastic is that you don't have to empty your cabinets before painting them. Yes, you read that right! You can leave everything in place, which makes this project unbelievably convenient. No more searching through piles on your living room floor for that one pan you need to cook dinner. You can continue using your kitchen throughout the painting process without any disruptions. It's a game-changer!

New Cabinets in 7 Simple Steps!

Here's the step-by-step process to transform your cabinets:

  1. Clean the cabinet doors.
  2. Prime the cabinet door fronts and edges, if necessary.
  3. Paint the cabinet door fronts.
  4. Remove the cabinet doors.
  5. Clean, prime, and paint the frames.
  6. Paint the edges of the cabinet doors.
  7. Reattach the doors.

That's it! It's as simple as following these seven steps. But if you want more detailed instructions and tips, keep reading.

Clean Cabinet Doors

To start, all you need is a good degreaser, such as Krud Kutter, and a clean rag. This powerful yet non-toxic cleaner will remove any grease buildup and ensure proper adherence of the paint. Simply spray it on and wipe it off with a slightly damp rag or paper towel. For tougher spots, a little elbow grease might be required. Be thorough and clean every paintable surface to ensure excellent results.

Prime Cabinet Doors (if needed)

DecoArt's Satin Enamels are formulated to adhere well to wood, so priming is not always necessary. However, if your cabinets are old, have stains, dark knots, or appear dried out, it's a good idea to prime them first. Primer helps with adhesion and stain-blocking, making your paint stick better, look better, and go further.

For painting over wood, I recommend Zinsser BIN Advanced Primer. It does an outstanding job of stain-blocking in various cabinet and furniture projects. Plus, it dries quickly, allowing you to proceed with your project promptly.

Paint Cabinet Door Fronts

This next step may surprise you: paint the cabinet door fronts while they're still hanging. Painting vertically is usually not recommended with traditional latex or oil-based paints due to the risk of drips. However, DecoArt's Satin Enamel paint holds its shape better while wet, resulting in smooth application and perfect drying time.

The drying time is essential as it allows the paint to even out and eliminate brush strokes, a vital factor in achieving a flawless finish. This property of the paint makes the whole process incredibly easy. Apply the paint evenly, being mindful of corners and edges where drips can occur. The best part is that you can recoat as soon as it's dry, potentially finishing all the coats in just one day if you're motivated.

One tip when painting doors with inlays: start by painting the nooks and crannies with a brush before using a mohair roller or large brush for the flat areas. This technique ensures precision without interrupting the flow of your work.

Removing Cabinet Doors

Before removing your cabinet doors, ensure you label them properly. Trust me, this step is crucial, as it prevents confusion when it's time to reattach them. Use a labeling method like the raffle ticket method shown in the image below. This simple act will save you time and frustration down the line.

Labeling cabinet doors with the raffle ticket method Labeling cabinet doors with the raffle ticket method

Now, with labeled doors, you're ready to remove them. It's advisable to find a helper for this step unless you possess extraordinary skills in balancing a solid wood slab in one hand while operating a power drill with the other, all while perched on your kitchen countertop. If you're anything like me, a partner's assistance will be greatly appreciated.

Simply unscrew the hinges and stack the doors along the wall or in your garage. If you plan to reuse the hinges, remember to label them accordingly and keep them aside for later. If you're looking for new hinges, consider white ones for a clean and seamless look. D. Lawless Hardware is an excellent online source for a wide selection of high-quality hardware options.

Clean, Prime, and Paint Frames

With the doors out of the way, you'll repeat the cleaning, priming, and painting process on the frames. It may sound like a daunting task, but it's relatively quick and straightforward. The frames require minimal space, allowing you to complete this step in no time. Before painting, tape off any edges to streamline the process.

Paint Edges of Cabinet Doors

While waiting for the frames and the rest of the paint to dry, you can focus on painting the edges of your cabinet doors. Ensure that both the door and frame paint are fully dry to avoid any sticking issues when reattaching the doors. Additionally, take this opportunity to paint the edges of your drawers.

At this point, you'll appreciate the advantages of having enclosed cabinets instead of open shelving in your kitchen.

Reattach Doors

Once everything is dry and in perfect condition, it's time to rehang the doors and replace the drawers. This step might require some contortionist moves, so having a partner on hand would be beneficial. Finally, add the finishing touch of fabulous hardware knobs and pulls, and voila! You have a beautiful, transformed kitchen.


Congratulations, you did it! Painting your kitchen cabinets doesn't have to be a daunting and overwhelming task. With this simple yet effective method, you can achieve stunning results without the need for sanding or disrupting your daily routine. Remember, this method works best with DecoArt Satin Enamel paint, which offers exceptional consistency, drying time, and durability.

So, what's stopping you from embarking on this exciting project? If you have any questions or require further assistance, don't hesitate to reach out. I'm here to help guide you towards a successful cabinet painting experience. And don't forget to check out the "After" photos for inspiration. Feel free to share and pin them to spread the joy of a beautifully painted kitchen!

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