Putting crown molding for kitchen cabinets can greatly change the look and ambiance of the room. The average you will spend starts from $7 per linear foot, depending on the type you choose and the labor cost of installing them. For a typical 10 x 10 kitchen, the crown molding cost will range from $210 and $570 for the labor, and from $2,000 to $4,000 including materials.
The final bill will depend on many factors, primarily the material used for the crown molding. This is a guide to crown molding for kitchen cabinets based on materials. The pros and cons can help you choose the right type for your needs.

Measuring the space

The first thing you have to do is to measure the space to find out how much crown molding you need. To find out how many linear feet of crown molding to install, simply measure the width of each of the walls and add them up. For instance, if one wall is 15 feet wide and two other walls are 14 feet wide, you need 43 linear feet (15 feet + 14 feet + 14 feet) of crown molding.

Calculating the labor cost

The typical cost per linear foot to install crown molding is between $6 and $12, depending on the expertise of the installer. Each linear foot installs between 10 and 30 minutes, again depending on the skill of the installer as well as the type of molding. Taking our earlier example, you can expect to spend a minimum of $258 for labor costs for 43 linear feet of crown molding, and take a minimum of 7 hours to complete.

Comparing materials

Most people associate crown molding with wood, but there are actually quite a few different materials used to make them. Each type has their pros and cons, and this rundown can help you choose the best crown molding for your kitchen cabinets.


Wood is the most popular material for crown moldings, and the cost range per linear foot is from $1 to $45. On the low end you have knotty pine, ash, and walnut. On the high end, you have mahogany, white oak, red oak, quarter-sawn oak, and hickory. Wood is an eco-friendly choice as they often come from sustainable sources.

Some of the most expensive types of solid wood for crown molding are softwood, and they are often the best ones because they will not crack or warp and they are easy to carve into any design. You can choose exotic woods that are already painted or stained if you want, but you will have to paint or stain the rest of the kitchen cabinets the same way.

The issue with most solid wood crown molding is they have to be primed prior to painting. You can DIY the installation, but it can be a difficult job because of all the angle cuts you have to make. They are also quite heavy, so you probably need assistance. Solid wood also tends to contract and expand, depending on the ambient temperature and humidity of the kitchen.


Some crown moldings come in plaster, a building material that could be primarily gypsum, cement, or lime. It is an affordable alternative to wood, and can be cast, carved, or molded into any shape and design such as English vine or Roma dental. The cost range per linear foot of plaster crown molding is from $6 to $12.

Plaster moldings are waterproof, so it will not shrink or warp like wood. However, it is quite heavier than other materials for crown molding, so it requires the skills of an experienced worker to install it with the proper support and without cracking. These are also custom products, which is why it is considerable more expensive.

Medium density fiberboard

Medium density fiberboard or MDF is a composite wood material commonly used for building affordable furniture, cabinets, and crown molding. The cost range per linear foot is from $1 to $3, and you can easily DIY the installation, saving you even more money on labor costs. MDF also accepts paint quite well, so that makes it very versatile.

The main problem with MDF crown moldings is that they are relatively soft, so they may sustain some damage during inexpert installation. The resins in the composite can also give off chemical smells for some years. They also have no grain, so painting them is necessary. Since MDF has wood in its composition, it might warp when humidity levels are high in the kitchen.


Primarily plastic, PVC crown moldings are ideal when you want a sturdy, low-cost, lightweight, and waterproof alternative. They are suitable for both indoor and outdoor use, and they cut and install easily. The cost range per linear foot is from $1 to $3, and they come primed and paint-ready. However, they are quite brittle, so you have to be careful when installing them to prevent cracking. It is not very flexible, so curves can be a problem. PVC crown moldings come in limited styles and do not hold paint as well as MDF or wood even with priming.


Some crown moldings are available in aluminum, copper, and steel. These are quite expensive per linear foot at between $20 and $25, but they are very tough and preformed to go around corners, so you will not have to make mitered cuts. However, they are not particularly suitable for many kitchens, and have a tendency to rust, discolor, or crack in high temperature and humidity.


Adding crown molding to kitchen cabinets is a cost-effective way to upgrade your kitchen, especially with the holidays just around the corner. Use this guide to help you choose the right ones for your kitchen. You can also consult with a remodeling specialist if you are considering it as part of a more extensive kitchen remodel.

Mimosa Kitchen and Bath can help you make the most of your remodeling budget if you are located in DC metro area, Columbia, Rockville, Bethesda, Jessup, Chevy Chase and surrounding areas.

At Mimosa Kitchen and Bath, we sell high-quality products manufactured by leading brands in the industry and expert remodeling services. When you purchase your products from us, we guarantee speedy delivery compared to ordering from big box stores. We will also customize the product according to your specifications and install it into your kitchen quickly and with excellent artisanship.

We sell a host of products, including but not limited to bathroom and kitchen cabinets, flooring, faucets and sinks, and vanities. Some of the brands we carry include Zodiaq, Fabuwood, Forevermark Cabinetry, Caesarstone, MSI, Kitchenmaid, Wolf Cabinets, Cambria and Hardware Resources. You can visit our showroom in Elliicott City, Maryland to see the many products and stone slabs we have available. This includes marble, granite and engineered quartz.

All of our products come backed with brand warranties. Contact us today to get a free quote for your kitchen or bathroom upgrade!