As the weather gets warmer, it’s natural to want to spend more time outdoors. That includes the preparation and cooking of meals. And enjoying them. Great outdoor kitchens can help to make the most of your al fresco meals.
More than a BBQ
A truly great outdoor kitchen is more than just a BBQ or grill.
You want to have countertop space. Counters definitely make outdoor preparation easier. They’re also great for buffet-style meals and may be able to double as an additional eating surface.
Kitchen storage is useful, even if it’s used exclusively for outdoor cooking utensils. Outdoor dishes and serving implements, linens, candles or lighting, or even gardening supplies can also make use of the space.
If you’re able to add in a sink and refrigeration, it’s always useful.
Whether you have a covered outdoor kitchen with a ceiling fan or a more open space, outdoor cooking is ultimately cooler than cooking indoors.
When you cook indoors, the temperature rises. That means the air conditioning needs to work harder to keep your home cool. Or that your home simple gets warmer.
Outdoors, there’s natural ventilation. Even if it feels like there’s very little wind, the air is constantly moving.
If your outdoor kitchen is in a full-sun area, even temporary overhead covering will add cooling shade.
When you’re planning your outdoor kitchen, consider your surroundings. Choose materials and finishes that can withstand local temperature fluctuations.
For example, if local Winter temperatures regularly dip below freezing, don’t select appliances, cabinetry, or counter materials that will crack or warp in extreme cold.
Before you install anything with an open or exposed flame, check local by-laws to ensure you won’t be in violation.
Since an outdoor kitchen is a fixed installation, you’ll also want to check local by-laws regarding placement and property boundaries.
A covered outdoor kitchen prolongs use of your outdoor kitchen, especially in areas that experience more distinct seasonal weather variations.