Creating an Outdoor Kitchen


Having an outdoor kitchen will help ensure that you can entertain, or even just have an ordinary dinner, without breaking into your time outdoors. There are a number of projects you can do to create your space, but here are some of the basic principles to get started:

Location

You’ll want to put the outdoor area as close to your existing, indoor kitchen and dining area as possible. If you don’t already have a door out from the kitchen, you may need to build one early in the process. The outdoor kitchen should be on a patio or deck, so if you don’t have anything like that already you’ll want to build one of those as well. You’ll need to make sure that the area can support the weight of whatever appliances you’re installing. 

Besides support, keep in mind what kind of utility hook-ups you might need to install for your appliances. If you’re installing a sink or wet bar, that will need plumbing that includes drainage, and a gas grill will require a gas line. You may want electrical outlets as well, whether for additional appliances or any other electrical equipment you might want to use.

An outdoor kitchen can be unique and a great way to entertain. 

An outdoor kitchen can be unique and a great way to entertain. 

Setup and Construction

Once the location for the outdoor kitchen is ready, the next step, along with putting in the appliances, is to install cabinetry and any surrounding walls you might want to put up. If you do decide to wall off your outdoor kitchen, there are plenty of options both functional and decorative. Stone is often the best choice. There are plenty of different aesthetic choices within that category that will work in your garden. 

Any materials you use in an outdoor kitchen should be weatherproof, and wood should be well sealed. Otherwise, rain as well as sun can cause extensive damage and warp countertops. The appliances themselves should be well protected. You’ll also want to make sure that the surfaces around a grill or fire pit aren’t flammable and won’t be damaged by heat.

As for the kitchen setup, there are plenty of options beyond grills and fire pits. Griddles and roasting spits, and even stovetop burners, can be brought out from the indoor kitchen. Including a sink and refrigerator is also essential if you don’t want to have to keep going in and out of the house. 

Counters and storage as well as seating areas are less obvious but still essential parts of creating the experience of being able to stay outside—as mentioned above, wooden cabinets will need to be weather treated. There are plenty of patio furniture options to use. Plus, of course, there’s the option of putting in an outdoor sound system to consider when you’re looking at the whole experience.

Although putting in an outdoor kitchen comes with different challenges from simply remodelling an indoor kitchen, being able to cook and eat out in your yard will enrich your parties as well as simple evenings at home, and will also add value to your home.

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