No matter the time of year, it’s great having an outdoor kitchen at your disposal. The world of outdoor cooking isn’t limited to grilling anymore - your gas or charcoal grill doesn’t have to sit alone on your patio! Items like pizza ovens, side burners, refrigerators, and outdoor sinks have quickly become a part of the outdoor cooking world. The hardest decision you’ll make is deciding which appliances belong in your outdoor kitchen.
If you need help creating your outdoor kitchen plan, and want to start designing your outdoor kitchen, we have some suggestions that will keep you cooking outdoors for years to come.
Determine Your Size and Outdoor Kitchen Style
Outdoor cooking isn’t what it used to be. You no longer have to find a corner on your deck for the grill. Now, outdoor cooking means creating a space that you can cook, sear, and char all of your favorite foods to perfection - while prepping all of your other delicious eats!
With this in mind, you might need more than a traditional natural gas grill sitting on your patio.
First of all, you’ll have to decide where you want to install your kitchen. It should be close to your house, but not in an area with heavy foot traffic. You don’t want the kids running around, or guests walking by trying to get to their seats. It’s nice to be close to your friends and family, but you don’t want to work in a space so tight that everyone is in your cooking area.
Once you have the ideal location picked out, take measurements of the length and width of your future outdoor kitchen area. See what size you have to work with, and take pictures of the space so you can visualize what your potential kitchen will look like. Also, think about what kind of cooking you’d like to do in this space. Are you more of a griller and goer, or do you prefer to prepare a spread of delicious food for all of your guests?
Depending on how much space you’ll have, and your cooking preferences, that will determine what type of outdoor kitchen you’ll create. If you have a narrow grill station and want to expand that space, you’ll probably have room for a prefabricated kitchen and bar area that won’t take up too much space. However, if you have a spacious backyard and love outdoor entertaining, you can add features like an outdoor pizza oven or barbecue grill to your outdoor kitchen.
Create an Outdoor Kitchen Plan Before You Shop
Every outdoor space is a little bit different. As such, it’s essential to have a rough idea of what you’d like in your kitchen before you shop. When you visit an outdoor furniture store that specializes in outdoor kitchen design services, like Casual Furniture World, there are a few essential things we want you to consider before shopping:
What is your budget?
Outdoor kitchens and grills don’t have to be extravagant unless you want them to be. If you have a strict budget in mind, our team will work with you to find the most creative and affordable solutions for you and your outdoor cooking area. However, if you have a healthy budget, use this shopping experience to build and customize the outdoor cooking space of your dreams.
What type of outdoor chef are you?
Another thing to consider is how often you indulge in outdoor dining and cooking. If you’re someone who sticks to a propane gas grill and nothing more, your outdoor kitchen plans might be better suited for a large bar area and entertaining. But, if you’re someone who loves wood pellet grills, cooking sides in cast iron skillets, and want the best outdoor grilling accessories, you’ll need a kitchen design that has everything you need in one place.
How often will you maintain your space?
Some chefs love to cook but dislike cleaning. When it comes to your outdoor kitchen, it’s just as crucial that you clean this space as well as your home. In addition to becoming dirty, your outdoor kitchen will combat the elements, which can lead to additional debris.
If you’re someone who isn’t great at cleaning, stick to a smaller kitchen with fewer appliances. However, if you remember grill covers and regular cleaning, the maintenance of a large outdoor kitchen won’t be a problem! For more helpful cleaning suggestions, review our Basic BBQ Cleaning and Maintenance Tips.
How many cooks will be in this kitchen?
If you are a chef who cooks alone, you might not need as much countertop space as you think. However, if your family plans on rolling up their sleeves and cooking in the kitchen with you, it might be best to add another bar or additional countertop space.
Final Outdoor Kitchen Tips
While it might be tempting to DIY an outdoor kitchen, it’s best to work with professionals to install your outdoor kitchen. At Casual Furniture World, we take your design preferences, budget, and vision very seriously. From the moment you walk into our stores, we’ll offer you design tips and customer service that will make your outdoor kitchen installation seamless and can help you with important decisions like how to buy a grill. Plus, we now offer a four-hour design consultation for all our clients.
To begin, you’ll meet with a certified kitchen designer for a one-hour “dream” consultation. We’ll write down your most important wishes, and create a rough sketch of your vision. From there, our certified kitchen designer will take measurements of your space, and will spend two hours developing a 3D visualization of your outdoor kitchen. During the final hour of your appointment, we will make any final revisions and a line drawing for construction. This design service, which costs $249.00, is fully refundable with a qualifying purchase from our stores.