It’s Outdoor Kitchen Time! Summer Outdoor Kitchen Series Part 1
How can you make the most of the summer? If you love to entertain and spend time outdoors, an outdoor kitchen is a great investment. Whether you’re cooking poolside or taking the patio up a notch, upgrading from a simple grill to a full outdoor kitchen is easier than you think.
Start with practical considerations; for example:
- Outdoor kitchens have different safety concerns—flooring materials shouldn’t be too slick, and weather affects wear-and-tear on everything from surfaces to appliances.
- In addition, you want your outdoor kitchen to be conveniently located—not too close to play areas, and not too a long walk from the indoor kitchen.
- Remember that storage and work surfaces must be weatherproof!
Establish a Foundation
Make early decisions about layout and materials with safety in mind. Ask and answer the following questions to help you make decisions:
- If you’re installing a kitchen on an existing deck, is it durable enough to bear the weight of your new appliances? Does it need repairing/restaining before the installation begins?
- Who will be using your new kitchen? Think about whether you’ll have kids, pets, or older guests using this space and choose materials accordingly.
- How will you utilize the space? Remember this is a workspace where you’ll be cooking, cleaning, carrying heavy items, etc.
A Note on Location
Don’t forget—where there’s smoke; it gets smoky! When you’re deciding where to put the grill, you want to choose an area where smoke won’t drift indoors, but not so far away that your trip back to the house feels like a hike on the Appalachian Trail.
Another consideration is your current view; when designing your outdoor kitchen, think about the view from inside the house looking out and design accordingly to keep your view unobstructed.
Sizing and Specifications
The appliances you choose will dictate much of your design plan. While unique, an outdoor kitchen does share many common traits with your main indoor kitchen:
- The “golden triangle” or kitchen work triangle between kitchen cooktop, sink, and refrigerator is just as useful outdoors as inside;
- Work surfaces are needed, so don’t forget to think about things like having enough space next to the grill to set down plates, and varying counter heights and work surfaces for different purposes;
- If you throw large parties or hire caterers to help you during events, this will affect the type of appliances you choose as well as the layout; have you considered using a kitchen designer?
Our summer outdoor kitchen series is just getting warmed up! Check back next week for more tips for designing your outdoor kitchen, and stay connected with K&N Sales on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Houzz.