The kitchen is the heart of any home, but having a kitchen in your backyard or garden is the contemporary luxury living many dreams of. Most homeowners are now looking for ways to give their outdoor space some flair with a DIY outdoor kitchen, alongside built-in appliances.
An outdoor kitchen is a great place to spend quality family time, entertain guests, and host parties without having to book a reservation. So it is important to design it with love and make it aesthetically pleasing. Backyard BBQs and grilling are perfect when the temperature is on the rise. A well-designed garden kitchen will allow you to enjoy cooking outside even beyond the summer periods.
Building an outdoor kitchen is not as difficult and expensive as most people think. Whether you have a small outdoor area or a large one, you can always create an outdoor kitchen that will be perfect for your space. Here, we’ve put together a DIY outdoor kitchen guide to help you create that functional and stylish outdoor kitchen.
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The first step to creating an outdoor kitchen is by determining its location and then establishing the floor layout. The location will largely depend on how much space you have in your garden. If you have a large garden or outdoor area, consider creating your entertaining area a bit distanced from the main house, although, they are some practical considerations you have to keep in mind.
Outdoor kitchens that are attached to the building can be great as well, especially if you entertain frequently. If your outdoor kitchen is placed close to the main building, it will make it easier to move things around, so you don’t have to travel a long distance between the indoor kitchen and your garden.
When choosing the location, avoid placing your outdoor kitchen where the smoke from the grill can waft back into the home. So, observe the wind pattern in your backyard and place the grill in a good position.
In terms of the practical layout, the same design rules for planning an indoor kitchen also apply here. Think about the orientation of your kitchen compared that your dining space, for instance, making sure your family or friends are not behind you while cooking. For this reason, consider an island for your outdoor kitchen.
Courtesy: Love Property
Just like creating a garden kitchen that is visually appealing, the ability of the materials to withstand the weather should also be put into great consideration for your DIY outdoor kitchen.
Whether you want to create a brick outdoor kitchen or a stainless steel outdoor kitchen, make sure you do a lot of research on the materials before buying. Be conscious of various weather climates that might affect the furniture or appliances you are installing.
Concrete, quartz, stone, ceramic, and brick are great materials when it comes to durability. On the other hand, treated hardwoods can help to bring in natural elements to your garden kitchen. Consider the flooring options as well, tiles or marbles can become slippery when wet, and it may not hold up to food stains or grease, so consider wooden flooring for your outdoor kitchen.
You must take into consideration the kinds of entertainment that will be done in your garden kitchen. Do you have children who might be running around? Or elderly guests in need of smooth surfaces? Safety should always be in your mind when choosing materials for a project of this scale.
Courtesy: The Baked Tile Company
Fixtures and Appliances
Generally, the cooking appliances that are usually incorporated in an indoor kitchen are different from those that are can be seen in the garden kitchen. For instance, in a garden kitchen, you will need pizza ovens, barbecues, tandoori ovens, and smokers.
While indoor cooking styles required appliances such as a stove, microwave, oven, fryer, rice cooker, and many more. Although they are various garden kitchens, such as prefabricated and modular designs, that also include a traditional hob cooktop.
There are no rules for what appliances you can or cannot have in your outdoor kitchen, if you like and need it, then go for it! A refrigerator is great for outdoor entertaining since you can use this to store drinks and keep foods fresh. Before placing electrical appliances in your garden kitchen, make sure an electricity connection in that space.
Consider installing a sink in your outdoor kitchen for convenience, so you don’t have to trail dirty dishes through the house to access the dishwasher.
In addition, consider storage options for your cooking utensils and a place to put rubbish when you are cooking in your outdoor kitchen.
Image Credit: Warnes McGarr/ Courtesy- Love Property
Lighting is an important element to consider when creating an outdoor kitchen. Not only will it serve as a source of light when cooking at night, but it can also be used for aesthetic purposes. Add the best lighting that can lend elegance and a relaxing ambiance to your garden kitchen. Outdoor lighting will allow you to be able to extend your time outside, and it offers safety for staircases, grilling areas, and walkways.
If you will be installing your outdoor lighting yourself, be sure to take precautions. Make sure the mains power at the consumer unit is turned off. A socket tester to check if the circuits are safe to work on. Remember to run all cables underground and check all finished work with a socket tester before using it.
The budget should be put into consideration even before you get started with your DIY outdoor kitchen. Allocate a budget for the project and work within it. Although it can be quite difficult to get the perfect financial planning, things, such as appliances, labor, and materials, may end up costing more than expected. So, prepare your mind to bend your budget a bit where necessary.
Do a proper search before buying materials or hiring laborers. Avoid buying things for your outdoor kitchen on impulse, rather, visit severals store, compare prices, read reviews, and ask about warranty policies.
Source: Gardening School
Here are the top 15 essentials you need for your outdoor kitchen
- Counter space
- Garden pizza oven
- Outdoor bar or bar cart
- Ventilation and Insulation
- Warming Drawer
- Trash, recycling, and compost bins
- Ice maker
If you are will be making landscaping changes in your outdoor area such as adding a swimming pool or retaining walls, make sure your outdoor kitchen is part of the overall design. Also, If you are undertaking a large scale project, then consider hiring a professional designer, not only will they help you design the perfect outdoor area and kitchen, they will also be able to offer valuable advice on the best layout, location materials, and many more.