Warm weather offers the perfect opportunity to get cooking outside. Elevate the area from a basic grill spot by adding a refrigerator, sink, and other appliances to create an outdoor kitchen. If you love the idea of an outdoor kitchen but have no clue how to design one yourself, follow the steps below. Soon, you will have the kitchen of your dreams outside your home!
Step 1: Select materials that can withstand local weather conditions. Stone, tile, stucco, slate, and stainless steel are several examples. All hardware and counter surfaces should be designed for exterior use. If you will be installing the kitchen on a deck, verify that the structure can support the additional weight.
Step 2: Include small details when designing the kitchen. Containers for cups, glasses, napkins, utensils, and cleaning supplies and under-counter trash and recycling containers are two examples.
Step 3: Create a kitchen garden near the area, planting peppers, tomatoes, and cooking herbs in pots close to the meal preparation space.
Step 4: To use the outdoor kitchen throughout the day and night, account for different natural lighting levels throughout the day. Use UL-rated Wet lighting and if the area is semi-enclosed, install an outdoor ceiling fan to circulate air.
Step 5: Decide on cooking surfaces, such as a smoker grill or a range. Account for these components when designing the kitchen. For example, creating a covered storage area for a smoker grill keeps the appliance out of the elements when it is not in use.
Step 6: Unlike your regular kitchen, an outdoor kitchen does not need to store a week’s worth of food and drinks. Choose a miniature refrigerator and freezer that fit under the counter, consume less energy, and are less expensive. Install a built-in dishwasher so dishes can be cleaned outdoors rather than being carried into the home.
Step 7: If the kitchen will be located on a covered or attached deck or patio, install a vent hood to provide adequate air circulation.
Step 8: Include electrical outlets in the design of the kitchen. A freestanding kitchen will need these to power appliances and lights. Place one outlet near your cooking area so the space can be used at night.
Step 9: Select a floor surface that is easy to clean, such as tile.
Step 10: Sweltering heat, wind, and rain can limit the use of an outdoor kitchen. Consider installing a full or partial roof, an outdoor umbrella, or a pergola.
Step 11: Designate ample storage space such as cabinets or a mobile cart to hold plates, serveware, utensils, and grilling tools. Built-in cabinets store cleaning supplies, charcoal, and logs, keeping these items away from weather elements and out of the way.
Step 12: Add a built-in seating area near the cooking spot.