Designing the Perfect Outdoor Kitchen

Do you love entertaining outside?

How long have you been waiting to design and build the outdoor kitchen you’ve been dreaming about?

The suggestions below will help you determine the best steps and options for your perfect outdoor kitchen design.

The best outdoor kitchens function as both a kitchen and an entertaining space.

The design can be as simple as a having a grill with a table and chairs, or as elaborate as a fully outfitted kitchen with built-in appliances and outdoor seating.

With so many options available to you, designing the best kitchen takes time and may require permitting from the city.

Before deciding where your kitchen will be, ensure that you start by finding any utility lines, both underground and overhead. Then begin the design layout with people in mind.

Think about the weather. You’ll have a lot more fun using your outdoor kitchen if you locate it away from windy areas or spots that have full sun.

One strategy is to build your space in an area with natural windscreens and shade from your existing landscaping. If you don’t have much landscaping, you could add it as needed. You also want overhead shading like a pergola or patio cover.

When you decide where your BBQ, fridge, and other components will go be sure put them in a place that does not impair the flow of people and seating. This is usually on the outside of the seating and dining area.

You should build your outdoor kitchen fairly close to your in-home kitchen so that it is easier to bring food, drinks, plates, and utensils in and out.

Make sure that you place your outdoor appliances in such a way as to prevent smoke from drifting into the house and into the area where people will be sitting and eating.

Functionality is the Key to a Great Outdoor Kitchen

You will have a lot of choices when it  comes to picking the appliances to add to your outdoor kitchen. Everything from grills, ovens, wine coolers, refrigerators, rotisseries, and whatever else you desire. Just remember that you will likely have a budget to work with so choose those appliances that will give you the most bang for your buck.

An easy way to choose is to ask yourself what you are most likely to cook and what appliances will you actually use on a regular basis.Small patio outdoor kitchen with fireplace

You will almost always need a refrigerator and a grill as well as storage and prep space. Counter-tops and cabinet choices will be very important. You will want to use a material other than wood as most species of wood will degrade as the years go by and end up looking bad. You need materials that will stand up to the weather. We recommend concrete, granite (not quartz stone), or metal counter-tops and cupboards.

These materials will give your kitchen a bold modern look as well as being durable and easy to wash.

Make purchase decisions for your kitchen components early on in the design process. Not only will you be able to save money by shopping early and getting the best deals but it will be important for the overall design of your kitchen by knowing the dimensions and how much space you will need.

You may have heard it said that the kitchen is the heart of the home. This will be true for your outdoor kitchen as well. Your friends and family will congregate on your deck or patio close to all the cooking action.

Your dining, lounging, and cooking areas should be near enough to each other that the cook and guests are able to chat while the meal is being cooked.

There is no doubt that you will be spending some cool evenings enjoying your outdoor kitchen so be sure to plan in some ambiance with good outdoor lighting. Add brighter lights on your pathways and softer, adjustable lights, in the area where people will be gathering. You can mix in some colored bulbs to help set the mood but use them in areas where lighting isn’t required to keep people safe.

Another great idea is to have a good sized flat screen TV which is suitable for use outdoors. This makes a great addition and allows you watch the game or movies with family and friends. If you decide to add a TV, then consider adding speakers so that sound is available in the whole seating area.

Having a large table will ensure your guests can sit and eat meals together or play games or just lounge and have a drink. Having a fireplace or fire pit with seating for more conversations is a favorite among many families.

Your outdoor kitchen will produce some heat as you are cooking so having a fan or two installed will help ensure that everyone is comfortable.

Pros and Cons of having an Outdoor Kitchen

Outdoor kitchens are not any different from any other home addition. They all have pros and cons.

Pros

  • Open flame cooking and smoking
  • Outdoor enthusiasts almost always love the art of grilling steaks on a hot grill or smoking meats on the rotisserie. This is one of the top reasons that people build an outdoor kitchen. It also adds to your living and entertaining space and gives you a few options for cooking that you just can’t do in your regular kitchen.
  • Keep your house cooler in the summer
  • Cooking outside in the summer is a great way to keep your home cooler and enjoy friends and family without making a mess inside.
  • Additional living and entertaining space
  • Not only is an outdoor kitchen pretty darn cool, it is also great gathering place. Many memories have been created over a BBQ’d meal and conversation. It also allows the cook to be a part of the conversation instead of being isolated in the kitchen.

Cons

  • Expense – The most obvious con is the expense of required to build or install an outdoor kitchen. Depending upon the features and quality of materials used as well as appliances your outdoor kitchen can range in price from $10,000 to $50,000 or more. Good planning will help with the budget.
  • Not very useful in the winter. Depending on where you live and the climate of your region, this may or may not be a concern. However, for the average family winter is not a time that you will be outside cooking and entertaining.

Genesis Group Can Help You Design the Perfect Outdoor Kitchen

Genesis Group LLC. has designed and built many outdoor kitchens, decks, sunrooms,  and other outdoor living spaces for Colorado Springs homeowners over the last 12 years. Check out some of the testimonials our customers have left us. If you love outdoor living then you will love what we can design and build for you. Contact us today to design your dream deck today.