Be inspired by nature as you prep, cook, and serve delicious meals in your own backyard oasis. Outdoor kitchens are a hot trend for both entertaining guests and intimate family meals. Designing the perfect outdoor kitchen takes some planning so we’re sharing some of our tried and true pro tips.
Similar to indoor kitchens, the most user-friendly outdoor kitchens often have the same three things in common—prep, cooking, and dining zones.
Plenty of prep space is important, including a place to prepare recipes and plate up the finished product. Cooking is the heart of the outdoor kitchen, so decide what kind of meals you want to prepare outside and plan accordingly. Appliances to include, from grills to griddles, really depends on your cooking wishlist. Definitely plan dining space so you can enjoy meals prepared outside with family and friends. Dining options may include table and/or bar seating with extra space for relaxed lounge seating too.
Start with must-have appliances and build your kitchen from there. For most people, a built-in grill tops the list. Griddles, range tops, smokers, and pizza ovens are also fun for outdoor cooking. Keep in mind, if your porch is covered you might want to add a ventilation system so you don’t smoke out guests.
When it comes to drinks—beverage refrigerators, wine coolers, ice makers, and kegerators are all nice additions to the outdoor kitchen and bar. You will want to keep those drinks close-by, ice cold, and flowing when summer temps heat things up!
Natural elements can be harsh on outdoor kitchens, especially when built open-air without cover. Outdoor appliances are always recommended for longevity. Non-corrosive materials like stainless-steel are intended to provide years of use outside.
Every season brings unique conditions from sun-scaled to freezing temps. Invest in heavy-duty UV resistant fabrics to prevent fading and tearing of umbrellas, cushions, and other textiles. Extend the life of grills, dining tables, and chairs by using covers during the harsh winter season.
Consider necessary utilities when designing kitchen zones. A well-thought-out plan ensures accessible gas hook-ups to support grills/smokers, plumbing installation for sinks and ice makers, and proper electricity placement for appliances and lighting. Also, take into account that some appliances rated for outdoor use require specific voltage/amp plugs.
It’s no fun lugging utensils, dinnerware, and other essentials out the door every time you want to have mealtime on the patio. Integrated storage is a must! Plan closed cabinetry to accommodate kitchen necessities outdoors. To ensure items are kept clean and protected, use plastic totes inside cabinetry.
Don’t forget a place to store trash and recyclables too. Roll out or tilt bins are preferred since they are easy to use and do a good job concealing unsightly garbage. You may want to keep some cleaning supplies handy outside too, for unexpected spills and quick clean-up.
Your backyard is about to get a whole lot more fun! Contact us to get started planning your perfect outdoor kitchen. Let’s get cooking!
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