We have developed an abiotic-biotic interface that allows engineered cells to control the material properties of a functionalized surface. This system is made by creating two modules: a synthetically engineered strain of E. coli cells and a functionalized material interface. Within this paper, we detail a protocol for genetically engineering selected behaviors within a strain of E. coli using molecular cloning strategies. Once developed, this strain produces elevated levels of biotin when exposed to a chemical inducer. Additionally, we detail protocols for creating two different functionalized surfaces, each of which is able to respond to cell-synthesized biotin. Taken together, we present a methodology for creating a linked, abiotic-biotic system that allows engineered cells to control material composition and assembly on nonliving substrates.