Applying metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) on the surface of other materials to form multifunctional materials has recently attracted great attention; however, directing the MOF overgrowth is challenging due to the orders of magnitude differences in structural dimensions. In this work, we developed a universal strategy to mediate MOF growth on the surface of metal nanoparticles (NPs), by taking advantage of the dynamic nature of weakly adsorbed capping agents. During this colloidal process, the capping agents gradually dissociate from the metal surface, replaced in situ by the MOF. The MOF grows to generate a well-defined NP-MOF interface without a trapped capping agent, resulting in a uniform core-shell structure of one NP encapsulated in one single-crystalline MOF nanocrystal with specific facet alignment. The concept was demonstrated by coating ZIF-8 and UiO-66-type MOFs on shaped metal NPs capped by cetyltrimethylammonium surfactants, and the formation of the well-defined NP-MOF interface was monitored by spectroscopies. The defined interface outperforms ill-defined ones generated via conventional methods, displaying a high selectivity to unsaturated alcohols for the hydrogenation of an α,β-unsaturated aldehyde. This strategy opens a new route to create aligned interfaces between materials with vastly different structural dimensions.