There is nothing better than spending summer outside, especially if you live in the north! An outdoor kitchen is a real pleasure in the summer, and careful planning will make your outdoor kitchen the perfect gathering place. There are a few simple things to consider when planning an outdoor kitchen area.
- Decide where you will place your outdoor kitchen. You will want it to be close enough to the house that you do not have to walk a great distance with cooking supplies and food. You will also need to consider sun and shading, as well as take into consider any other activities you have going on in the yard. Do you have a pool? Do you have a basketball or tennis court? Are you located near water or in a windy spot? You will need to consider the things you will be doing and how well your kitchen will fit in the space.
- Check with your local building department to make sure you will not need permits to build. They will need a diagram showing footprint and height as well as any water of electric you will be using. They will want to verify that you meet all set back and fire safety requirements as well, so plan your location before applying for the permit.
- Water is essential for a good outdoor kitchen area. Plan how you will attach to your plumbing, as well as how difficult it will be to run underground piping to carry the water. Lots of roots in the area? Might want to reconsider.
- It is a good idea to run electricity to your outdoor kitchen, even if you plan a wood or gas barbeque. It is great to have electric hookup for a refrigerator and entertainment center. The furniture should be made from supreme quality of wood. The outdoor furniture daybeds should be of durable life and strong wood.
- Do you typically have large gatherings? If so, take that into account when planning how large your grill area will be and make sure that the area is large enough to cook enough meat for your crowd size.
- Do not skimp on building materials. It is a lot of work to build an outdoor kitchen. You don’t want to redo it in a couple of years because you used poor quality material. Use good products the first time around and you will be able to enjoy your kitchen a long time.
- Are you building in a sunny area? If so, you should consider a roof over the seating area of your kitchen. If you build the roof over the cooking area be sure to use products designed for such and are fire resistant.
- If you are planning a wood burning grill in your outdoor kitchen, it is a good idea to build a wood storage box into your grill. This will allow you to store your wood in a dry location, close to where you will be using it. You can also use this are for charcoal and lighting materials.
- A great kitchen has great seating. You will want to design your outdoor kitchen so that your guests will be comfortable “hanging out” with you. Install comfortable seating close to the cooking area. The finishing touch to a good outdoor kitchen is a great table. Select one that is comfortable and will stand up to the weather in your area. Select a table that will remain attractive with low maintenance.
- Ground cover around your kitchen is very important. If you prefer not to walk on grass around the kitchen, there are a great many choices for ground cover. Pavers or tile are an excellent choice and are very easy to keep clean.
- You can incorporate plantings among the pavers as well as seating. When incorporating plantings keep in mind that many plants attract bugs; not always a good choice when preparing or eating food. There are a lot of nice green plants as well as many flowering plants that do not attract unwanted insects.
Good planning and careful building will produce an outdoor kitchen that will provide many years of fun.