What Grout Color Should I Choose for a Metal Tile Backsplash Install?

Selecting a grout color is a personal choice, and as much a design decision as selecting the tile itself. It really depends on the final look you are trying to achieve with your tile design.

This article is about helping you make that decision, so you can find the right grout color for the type of tile and wall design you are trying to achieve.


EMT_115-MIX-CB stainless steel black and silver tile

Featured Accent Kitchen Backsplash Tile: EMT_115-MIX-CB


Choosing the type and color of grout is often the last step in a design process. Most of us, let’s face it, do not even think of it until it is pretty much time to grout the tile. After all, selecting the right tile is the most important part of a wall design process, and grout lines just feel like the least important step. Between the planning and the designing of your project, grout is often overlooked and considered a mere detail.


Copper Kitchen Backsplash Tile: EMT_MM01-COP-AT


Grout selection is actually a serious consideration when it comes to tiling. First of all, it is critical to select the right grout type before selecting a color. If you are going to install a metal backsplash for example, purchasing non-sanded grout for your project is important, otherwise your tile might get scratched during installation.

Further, you need to decide what grout consistency you would need to get in order to achieve the final look you are targeting. Do you prefer rough looking grout lines that would be more prominent? Or would you rather go with thin or flat grout lines instead? It is recommended you or your tile installer spend some time learning and choosing the type of grout that would be required for your tile installation.
Grout ties tiles together, keeping them from being chipped or cracked over time. It is important to choose the right grout for your project, and decide whether you would like to have it sealed. Sealing the grout lines would prevent the grout from getting dirty over time. Although it would cost a bit more, it would keep your grout lines looking new.

Once you have made your selection of the type of grout, you would then move on to the color selection.

Bathroom Backsplash - Wall Accent Tile: EMT_122-MIX-MRFP


In short, when it comes to grout color, you can either go neutral, complementary or distinct.


Choosing a neutral grout color is what most people choose to go with, and our preferred method of selecting a grout color in general.
Selecting a grout color like an off-white, a light beige or a light gray would naturally go well with the majority of tiles found in the Western world. These colors remain pleasing to the eye and have some advantages over the other colors. For example, light grays get dirty less quickly than white grout lines. The neutral colors also never go out of fashion, and chances are you would never get bored of neutral colored grout lines.

When installing a silver metal backsplash like stainless steel or aluminum, selecting light gray colors would be a great option if you do not want to see much difference between the tiles and the grout lines. It will give your tile design a more uniform look.

However, selecting a white or off-white grout color could give that ‘brand-new’ look to your tile installation, which can be an attractive feature if for example you want to sell your property. Further, most people expect grout lines to be in the white to light beige color range, making the result more prone to people acceptance.


Metal tile install with grey non-sanded grout lines

Metal Backsplash with Gray Grout Lines



Selecting a complementary grout color that would more or less match the tile color could be the right decision if you are looking for a more uniform look. As mentioned above, neutral light gray colors do match silver stainless steel tiles well. In this instance, the color is both neutral and complementary.

However, not all complementary colors are neutral. If your tile is black in color, and you want to match it with black grout lines, this would create a complementary look that might just go well with the final look you are trying to achieve.

Complementary grout lines can create a seamless definition of your tile design so that the eye does not see where the tile ends and where the grout line starts. In this case, you would go for anywhere from a slightly lighter shade to a slightly darker shade of the main tile color to get that seamless design perspective.


Choosing a distinct grout color would make your tile installation really stand out. This would require a bit more expertise when selecting a grout color as the tile installation could really go either way, i.e. chances are it will either go very well with the tile, or not at all.
Selecting a grout color that contrasts with the tile color can be challenging, however it can really make your tile design noticeable if you want to attract attention to it. The grout lines would then appear more like a grid, framing your tile décor and making a bold, or in some cases, making a very modern statement.

In case you decide to go with a distinct grout color, make sure you take into account the tile design. For example, if the tile is made of vertical metal lines, the vertical grout lines may go well with a distinct grout color, however the horizontal grout lines might clash with the overall design. However if your tile design is for example pinwheel-based, a distinct grout color could be more appropriate. It would highlight the design without breaking its flow.


No Grout / Groutless Kitchen Backsplash Tile: EMT_AL10-SIL-CB


Grout color selection is an important step. It requires some time and dedication to find the right balance between the colors you are attracted to and the final look you are trying to achieve.

However, the good news is with metal wall designs you might not need any grout at all to begin with. If you are not fond of grout lines, or you simply do not want to go through the process of selecting and then applying grout to your tile project, one simple solution might be to simply select ‘grout less’ metal tiles.

We actually carry a selection of these tiles in the aluminum section. If this would be your preferred option, please take a look at our groutless aluminum tiles and see if you can find the right tile for your project.