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Outdoor Kitchens: The Ultimate Guide

Outdoor Kitchens: The Ultimate Guide

As more and more Brits invest in pizza ovens, fire pits, and high quality outdoor cooking implements, there is a rising need for outdoor kitchens to make outdoor living more comfortable, while protecting the equipment.

If an outdoor kitchen is on your to-do list this year, here’s what you need to consider.

Stage one: location

Before you start on your outdoor kitchen it is a good idea to consider exactly how you think you will use the kitchen. What cooking facilities do you have or want? How many people will you usually cook for? Where is the most logical space to build your kitchen?

The location of your kitchen will depend on logistics, such as proximity to a power source (or capacity to have a power source installed by an electrician), environment; a sheltered spot that catches the evening sun may be your priority, and practicalities; how much space is actually available and accessible throughout the year.

Once you have a location, you will have a good idea of the amount of space that you have. This will allow you to work out what additional cooking facilities you may need, and which you may not have space for. If the outdoor kitchen is a little way from the house, you may decide to install a small fridge to keep condiments and drinks in, to save walking back and forth continually. You may even have enough space to keep camping crockery and cutlery in the outdoor kitchen, so that it is ready for you to entertain at a moment’s notice.

Stage two: research

Once you know where your outdoor kitchen will go, you can have fun looking at the different options available. Do you want a modular off-the-shelf kitchen? If you are a dab hand at DIY or have a good local handyman, carpenter or builder, you may well be able to create a unique kitchen designed to suit your specific needs. However, before you decide whether to buy a ready to go kitchen or design your own (with or without a little bit of help) it is a good idea to look at different designs and see which ones would work for you.

Stage three: experiment

Regardless of your budget, building an outdoor kitchen is not a small job. Before you commit to a layout, experiment with it. Use benches and tables to map out your kitchen and test out your mock up to see how it works. You may decide that you don’t need running water, but electricity is a must. You might move away from the romanticism of having a charcoal barbecue or wood fuelled pizza oven, in favour of the quicker (but less authentic) gas alternatives. And you may decide that a fridge is not essential, as long as you keep space for a cool box.

If you are struggling to envisage how your outdoor kitchen will work, and what the best layout is for you, it is worth speaking to a carpenter or builder, who will be able to offer suggestions that are in keeping with your budget. Feeling inspired? Find local tradespeople in our directory, or follow us on Facebook or Twitter for more.


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