Designing the Perfect Outdoor Kitchen

  • 8 min read

Did you know recent studies have shown that people who live in homes with outdoor spaces tend to be happier and healthier than those who don't? If you want to join the "outdoor kitchen" movement, read on for some tips on designing the perfect diy outdoor kitchen space.

Outdoor living spaces are a great way to extend your living space to your backyard. For many, having an outdoor entertaining area helps enhance the overall feel of their home.

There are many factors that go into designing a functional entertaining space. Some things are essential while others are more subjective based on the customer's preferences and personalities. 

Whether you're looking for certain amenities or just want your outdoor area to fit with your current decor, this article is meant to help guide anyone who is thinking of creating an Outdoor Living Space.

Outdoor Living

The outdoor living space is a popular choice for homeowners looking to expand their outdoor activities. Today's outdoor living designs are not only practical, they are aesthetically pleasing as well.  

There are many things you need to take into consideration when creating an outdoor living space, such as your diy outdoor kitchen and patio design.

Outdoor Kitchen Design for Movie Night

 The best outdoor kitchen is large enough for all of your appliances and guests so it helps to pre-plan before you start building.

Here are the basic factors you need to consider for your backyard kitchen:

1. Outdoor Kitchen Area
Measure how much space you have available for your diy outdoor kitchens and patios. Make sure to plan for plenty of storage space and cooking space. The best way to do this is by using the grid method, which involves mapping out the dimensions of the diy outdoor kitchen on the ground with spray paint or flour.

2. Outdoor Cooking Appliances
It is important to decide on how you are going to use your diy outdoor kitchen before you begin designing it.. You want to make sure that all of your diy outdoor kitchen appliances fit in the diy outdoor kitchen design before starting.

3. Shade and Coverings
If you are planning for year-round outdoor cooking, a pergola is essential to protect yourself from sun, rain, wind, and cooler temperatures. You cannot control Mother Nature, but you can prepare for her changes ahead of time!

4. Kitchen Countertops
Outdoor kitchens require different countertop materials. Concrete countertops and granite are the most popular outdoor kitchen countertop choices, but there are many more to choose from. Make sure you have plenty of counter space for food prep.

Outdoor Kitchen Area

As more people convert their yards into little "outdoor rooms," they're looking for innovative ways to incorporate sophisticated amenities like dining areas, firepits, living spaces, entertainment centers--and even full kitchens--into their home landscaping.

The best thing about designing an outdoor kitchen area is the complete lack of boundaries. You can build a small outdoor kitchen near the house, but you can also set it up a large one farther out in your backyard, surrounded by nothing but nature; the choice is yours.  

All of this can be done at a relatively low cost, if you look online at Lowes you will be able to shop for bespoke outdoor kitchen materials at a discounted price.  

Once you’ve chosen the location, the next thing to do is decide which outdoor kitchen and living area elements to include. Following are some considerations to keep in mind when doing an outdoor home improvement project.

Create a Focal Point with a  Kitchen Island

Did you long for a kitchen island indoors but lack the floor space? You can have your own kitchen island in your backyard when you include one in your outdoor kitchen build.

An outdoor kitchen island gives you ample space for food preparation, but it can also double as a sideboard serving area, or an outdoor bar with seating area.

 Outdoor kitchen island built of blocks with a granite countertop

Here’s the thing; if you’re going to have an outdoor kitchen, the kitchen island with an outdoor sink is an absolute must! Kitchen islands come in a variety of styles and sizes.  You can create the perfect place setting for the family to enjoy an upgraded dining experience.

If you are a DIY'r that wants to build your own components, you could start with a kit like the DIY outdoor kitchen island kit, which you can utilize any way you like, including serving up to six guests, meal prep and even holding court on a backyard wine tasting event!  

Don’t Forget the Grill Station!

Of course, no outdoor kitchen plan would be complete without a blazing outdoor BBQ grill station. Having the neighbors over for a backyard BBQ is one of the perks of being the first one on your block to install an outdoor kitchen, right?

The best thing about designing your very own outdoor kitchen is that you can choose between many different types of grills. Heck, even charcoal enthusiasts can opt for a charcoal grill that's perfect for your backyard BBQ festivities.

Fire Magic island with grill, side burner, and refrigerator

Of course, the smartest outdoor kitchen designer takes it one step further and installs a variety of cooking appliances. Why? For the simple reason that some foods taste great on a propane or gas grill while others taste better when wood-fired. You don’t even have to be a bona fide foodie to know that!  When you include both in your outdoor kitchen design, you get the best of both worlds!

Throw in an Outdoor Pizza Oven to Complete the Set

Most homeowners who love to cook have always dreamed of their own pizza oven, but few get to see that dream come true. Now that you’re designing your own outdoor kitchen, why not toss in an outdoor pizza oven?

With your very own wood fired pizza oven, you can express your inner chef to your fullest! Make everything from stuffed crust pizzas to calzones to flatbread pizzas, all in the comfort of your own backyard!

Stainless Steel Pizza Oven sitting on block base in outdoor kitchen

But, is a pizza oven really worth it if you don't make a ton of pizza?  Of course!  While they are called "pizza ovens", they are really just outdoor ovens that use either wood or gas to fire them.  You can bake, grill, and roast in a pizza oven the same as indoors only it's way more fun outside!  Check out this blog post for tons more you can cook in your gas or wood-fired pizza oven.

If you’re not sure which pizza oven is the right one for your needs, why not take the ultimate pizza oven quiz? Here’s a hint, though. You’ll need to choose between brick and metal, and also consider where your pizza oven will fit into your overall outdoor kitchen design. But don’t worry – this quiz is the most fun you’ve ever had with a test!

Warm Up to Outdoor Living With an Outdoor Fireplace

Your outdoor kitchen area isn’t just for cooking, right? You’ll want to entertain friends and enjoy family time in front of a blazing, cozy fire; maybe even a Victorian fireplace!

Victorian fireplace built of stone on patio with fire burning

Instead of huddling up inside when the thermometer takes a dive, why not get year-round use out of your outdoor living area by including a fireplace in your design? An outdoor fireplace creates a focal point for conversation, laughter and bonding, even when you aren’t creating a meal. Of course, you can also cook over the open flame of your outdoor fireplace when the mood strikes.

When choosing your outdoor fireplace, keep an open mind. An outdoor fireplace has lots more options for you to choose from. You can even build your own outdoor fireplace with a pizza oven using a convenient DIY fireplace kit, which leaves the whole set up to your vivid imagination!

Fireplace with pizza oven by Round Grove Products


Take Shelter in Your Outdoor Kitchen

Outdoor kitchens are becoming increasingly popular, and for good reason. They're an outdoor extension of your indoor kitchen which means more delightful outdoor living. 

By adding a hardtop gazebo with side walls around the cooking station, you also create sound protection that eliminates excess noise from reaching your neighbors. It also serves as an added element of privacy, which makes your outdoor living space more enjoyable and relaxing.

No matter where you live, you can understand the importance of incorporating shade elements into your outdoor kitchen design. If your roof doesn’t have a large overhang—and even if it does—consider adding a hardtop gazebo to the cooking area. This simple but valuable addition will prove its worth again and again.

Gazebo covering an outdoor kitchen island and patio furniture

large overhang on your roof can provide substantial shade for your outdoor kitchen area. It helps block direct sunlight, keeping the cooking and dining space cooler and more comfortable, especially during hot summer days. Additionally, a large overhang can protect your outdoor kitchen equipment and furniture from rain, reducing the risk of water damage and extending its lifespan.

Furthermore, a well-designed overhang can enhance the aesthetic appeal of your outdoor kitchen, adding architectural interest and creating a visually pleasing space. It can also serve as a framework for incorporating additional shade elements such as retractable awnings, pergolas, or even outdoor curtains, providing versatility in controlling sunlight and privacy.

Not only will a gazebo or pergola offer practical value; it also expands your decorating options. Design-minded homeowners often decorate the gazebo with flowering vines (either real or faux – we won’t tell!), corner-bound outdoor curtains and other decorative elements that make the gazebo part of the whole outdoor living experience.

Of course, the practical benefits cannot go unmentioned. Hardtop gazebos come with nylon mosquito netting so you and your guests can dine al fresco without being pestered. Multiple dimension options make this a realistic addition to your outdoor kitchen no matter how much space you have to work with!

Other Tips

Designing the perfect outdoor kitchen involves several key considerations to create a functional and inviting space. Start by measuring the available area and planning for ample storage and cooking space. Select outdoor cooking appliances that suit your needs and ensure they fit within the design. 

Incorporating shade elements like pergolas or hardtop gazebos provides protection from the elements, while proper lighting extends usability after sunset. Storage solutions like cabinets and shelves keep the space organized, and utility connections ensure appliances work efficiently. 

Enhance the experience with features like an outdoor dining area, bar, and fire pit for warmth and ambiance. Integrate landscaping and greenery for a natural touch, and consider entertainment options such as a weatherproof TV or outdoor speakers. 

A Place For Everyone in Your Outdoor Kitchen

The next big design element to consider in your outdoor kitchen is the seating. You’ll definitely want comfortable seating for everyone, because after all, that’s the whole point of relaxing outdoors, right? Your patio furniture should reflect the overall décor that you’re going for.

Tortoga Rio patio furniture sitting on the back patio

Are you looking for simple elegance? Then the Bayview collection of resin wicker is ideal. An all-weather material resists staining, cracking, water damage and wear and tear from UV rays. In short? It’s perfect!

Are you looking for classic wicker, such as a comfy rocking chair and matching side table? An easy to clean wicker set will make it easy for family and guests to feel right at home in your outdoor living space!

When choosing seating, make sure you have ample places for people to sit and rest, and make little areas where family and guests can talk or sneak in their favorite summertime reading.

Outdoor Living Space with Necessories Kits

Isn’t it time you indulge your love of the outdoors with a beautiful new outdoor kitchen and living area?

Thanks to its many benefits, a properly designed outdoor kitchen is something that you will use often, and it is sure to add enjoyment to your life. So have fun designing yours! And don't forget to check out our Facebook page for more design ideas or contact us with any questions! 


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