38 Beautiful Outdoor Kitchen Ideas

While lighting is often overlooked, it increases the usability of an outdoor kitchen and also provides an element of safety. Also, shade and cover protect from the sun and rain, and allow the space to be used more frequently. “After all, cooking outdoors and dining al fresco during a summer rain shower can be a lovely experience!” Donaldson concludes.

What are the best materials to use for an outdoor kitchen?

“Stainless steel is very durable and easy to clean,” says Lowney. “It withstands moisture and heat and holds up well to the outdoor elements.” When it comes to the countertops, Lowney suggests granite because of its strength and durability with minimal maintenance. “With a strong commercial sealer, it will resist staining and moisture. Porcelain is also becoming popular due its ease of maintenance and attractive price point,” she adds.

How much does it cost to build an outdoor kitchen?

Certainly, building a full-size outdoor kitchen with a prep area, stainless-steel appliances, and a kegerator is a pricey option. Lowney says that it’s “really difficult to put a number on” outdoor kitchens, since “cost can vary greatly depending on the design, size, labor required, and materials you use.” However, many people choose to DIY their own outdoor kitchen, working to plan and build the space with a strict budget. Remember, even a humble mini fridge next to a wisely designed counter space can be the foundation of your outdoor kitchen design. When you’re dining al fresco, having your own outdoor kitchen can be enjoyable with just a pair of comfortable bar stools at a high-top table.

Does adding an outdoor kitchen increase the value of your home?

Because an outdoor kitchen expands the usable space of your home and enhances the property’s overall appeal, it will ultimately increase the value of your home.

“This is particularly true in areas with favorable climates, as they offer opportunities for relaxed entertaining and cooking while connecting with nature, which is a lifestyle goal for many homebuyers,” says Donaldson. However, she also notes that the extent to which an outdoor kitchen impacts a home’s value can vary depending on factors such as the quality of construction, design, and local real estate market conditions.

How do you keep costs down when building an outdoor kitchen?

If you’re looking to expand your outdoor space, Donaldson recommends sticking to a budget that prioritizes which features are most important to you. Since weather-resistant products can often be more costly than their interior counterparts, consider practical, yet lower-cost materials to use such as concrete, stainless steel, or composite material for cabinetry. “It is best to keep it simple in an outdoor kitchen, eliminating the aesthetic bells and whistles, if budget is a concern,” Donaldson added. Consider the outdoor elements as your design inspiration and aesthetic and let the cooking station be just that, functional, and practical, but not too showy. As for where you shouldn’t attempt to save money, Donaldson recommends that people never cut corners when it comes to safety features. “High-quality materials, proper ventilation, and professional installation protect against fire or gas leaks,” she adds. Additionally, waterproofing measures will contribute to the longevity of the outdoor kitchen.

What do I do about my outdoor patio kitchen during the winter?

There are so many variables that go into designing an outdoor entertainment space, with one of the most important ones being the environment you live in. Folks who live in dry areas with little precipitation don’t have to worry as much about the threat of snow or hurricanes. By building a covered patio kitchen, you aren’t as limited to when you can use the space. Lowney, who based in New England, recommends building a covered kitchen area to ensure it lasts longer. “It extends the longevity of the investment,” she notes.

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