Modular Kitchen Plywood. The Best Plywood For Kitchen?

One question most of my clients ask is “Which is the best Plywood for Kitchen?

If you want a simple and short answer then I can say like many others that waterproof plywood is the best plywood for kitchen.

But in general, it is quite confusing for you to choose the right kind of waterproof plywood, especially for modular kitchens as there are various types of plywood available in the market with various price points.

Also, there are multiple plywood brands available in the market with various product lines, and for a modular kitchen, there are various thicknesses and types of plywood are required.

So, let’s start and discuss everything you should know about modular kitchen plywood.

Best plywood for kitchen
Modular kitchen plywood

Why You Need A Best Quality Plywood For Kitchen?

Plywood is the most common and widely used material not only for modular kitchens but also for various furniture.

But why do you need the best quality plywood for a modular kitchen?

There are a few reasons.

  1. Modular kitchens are expensive or you can say the most costliest piece of furniture in a home. So to ensure its durability you need good quality plywood for the kitchen cabinets. Good quality plywood can last long and provides strength to the whole structure.
  2. The kitchen is a place where moisture, vapor, oily gases, and dirt are frequent. So you need a material to resist these things.
  3. The use of water is also frequent in the kitchen and kitchen cabinets are somehow exposed to water. So you need plywood that is waterproof or can resist water and save the cabinets from damage.
  4. In kitchens, we use various types of electronic appliances and highly flammable LPG. So there is always the chance of fire mishaps. So we need a plywood that resists fire is always better.

Types of Modular Kitchen Plywood

Generally, there are 2 types of plywood used for kitchen

1-Solid Plywood

It is real plywood made of multiple thin wood veneers sandwiched together with the help of glue. It is available in various grades and thicknesses from 4mm to 25mm. The thickness of the plywood depends upon the count of wood veneers used.

Generally, 19mm plywood is used for kitchen cabinet structure and 6mm or 9mm are used for backer. The quality of this plywood is measured by the wood and the glue used.


Plyboards or Blockboards are popularly known as plywood but actually are not. These are made up of solid wooden battens sandwiched between thick wood veneers by the use of glue. These are used to make furniture shutters or doors(those that have a height greater than 3ft). It is available from 16mm to 30mm. Generally, 16mm and 19mm are used for shutters. The quality of this plywood depends upon the wooden blocks and the glue. Pine wooden blocks are considered the best.

Best Plywood For Kitchen

So now the thing is “How do you find the best plywood for the kitchen?”

When it comes to measuring quality we must go with the plywood grades which are categorized according to the quality standards by the BIS.

There are generally three grades of plywood available in the market i.e.: IS 303 (MR and BWR), IS 710 (BWP or Marine grade), and IS 5509 (FR or Fire Retardant grade). Apart from these if you are using plyboards or blockboards for kitchen shutters then IS 1659 is the quality grade.

If you are searching for the best plywood for the kitchen then you can either go with waterproof plywood of IS 710 (BWP or Marine grade) or you can pick the fire-resistant plywood of IS 5509 (FR grade).

Now let’s discuss both plywood and the plyboards.

1-Waterproof Plywood or IS 710-grade plywood

It is also known as BWP grade and Marine grade plywood. This is the most common grade of plywood and is widely used for home furniture making especially for modular kitchens.

In this type of plywood, some specific wood veneers are bonded with the help of a special glue called phenol Formaldehyde(PF), which resists the water entering into the plywood and hence is known as waterproof plywood.

There are various waterproof plywood or IS 710-grade plywood available from various well-known brands that you can check the detailed product specifications. They come with various price points and different years of warranties and guarantees. You can check the detailed product specifications to differentiate them according to their quality, strength, and various features.

2-Fire Retardant Plywood or IS 5509 Grade Plywood

In short, this is also known as FR plywood. These types of plywood are both waterproof and resist fire and hence are the most costlier of all.

But what I suggest, you should go with this plywood if your budget permits. In a kitchen with multiple electronic appliances and highly flammable LPG, there are always chances of a fire mishap. So FR plywood is a great option for the kitchen which can resist fire for up to a couple of minutes and make the place safe for you and your belongings.

3-Plyboards or Blockboards(IS 1659 Grade)

Plyboards or blockboards are limited to furniture shutters or doors. If you have shutters of 3 feet or less then you can use solid plywood or else you can go with plyboards. Plyboards are only available with BWP grade(boiling waterproof grade) and there are no FR grade blockboards. It is also popularly known as a waterproof board or waterproof plyboard.

If you are choosing blockboards then go with superior-quality BWP blockboards with IS 1659 mark. Make sure these are of Pine wood blocks. Pine blockboards are considered superior quality compared to hardwood. Blockboards made from the New Zealander pine are considered the best.

Tips for Choosing the Best Quality Plywood For Kitchen

  1. Plywood made up of Gurjan wood is best. However, due to the scarcity of Gurjan wood, some are using it only for face veneers or in alternative layers. These plywood are rare and if you find it anywhere then take it.
  2. Most of the plywood is available now with a hardwood core. After Gurjan the best hardwood is Eucalyptus which is generally a little red in colour.
  3. Check the wood veneer layers before buying. It should not be overlapping with no core gap.
  4. Try to buy from a reputed plywood company and from authorized dealers. You can also contact various companies directly online.
  5. Do not consider MR plywood or BWR plywood(IS 303). Also avoiding MDF material kitchen cabinet structure is better.
  6. Check the ISI and BIS grade marks like IS 710, IS 5509, IS 1659, etc.
  7. Be aware of duplicity. Some plywood companies even provide QR codes to check the originality.


Is there any Substitute for Plywood for the Kitchen?

Yes, there are many alternative materials for the kitchen instead of plywood you can go with like HDF, WPC, aluminum, steel, etc. Also, you can mix other materials with plywood to get the best modular kitchen rather than using only plywood.

Which type of plywood is better for kitchen cabinets?

Waterproof or BWP plywood (IS 710 grade) and Fire retardant plywood (IS 5509 Grade) are better for kitchen cabinets.

Where can I find waterproof plywood for the kitchen?

There are several dealers and distributors in the market, where you can find waterproof plywood easily. You can differentiate the waterproof plywood from the other plywood easily as it has the IS 710 mark. But ensure it belongs to a well-known company.

Which brand of plywood is best for the kitchen?

There are several reputed brands in the market like Century, Green, Duro, National, Archid, Sylvan, etc. We have shortlisted more than 15 plywood brands with their products and prices.


A modular kitchen is the most frequently used furniture and is also exposed to water, moisture, and dirt the most. As a basic material plywood plays a great role. As I discussed above always prefer the best quality waterproof plywood or FR plywood.

Apart from searching for the best plywood for kitchen you also need to use it properly with the utmost care, clean it regularly, and maintain it properly. Also, proper making of this furniture can make it more durable.

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