5 tips to designing a great outdoor kitchen

If you do a lot of entertaining, you will likely have a dedicated spot in your home where guests congregate when they come to party. While a formal dining room is a great place to entertain, it can be a little stuffy, especially in the summer months when the outdoors is beckoning. One great way to keep your guests happy and to take advantage of the great weather is to create an outdoor kitchen that allows you to cook, serve, and entertain your guests in one perfectly beautiful spot.

Let’s take a look at some key elements that should be part of every alfresco kitchen design.

  • Preparation space – It doesn’t matter whether you choose to go with a traditional gas barbecue, a brick pizza oven, or some other form of cooking set-up, you need a place to prepare the food you are going to serve. Why waste time running back and forth to the kitchen in your house when you can do it all outside? An island or countertop area is an essential part of any outdoor kitchen.

  • Seating – How you arrange the seating in your alfresco dining area will depend on space and what you want for your guests. Some people like to have the seating as close to the cooking action as possible so that the chef skills can be put on full display. Others prefer an eating area that spill into the garden or out by the pool, if you have one.

  • Style integration – It is considered a good idea to consider your outdoor kitchen as an extension of your home. What that means is sticking with the design style that you have on the inside. If, for example, you have a contemporary design throughout your home, you may want to consider carrying that over to the outside so that your guests will not feel as though they have left your home and went someplace else once they step outside.

  • Lighting – A great party usually keeps rolling long after all of the food has been eaten. You don’t want to have to ask your guests to take the party inside after the sun sets, so be sure to include some beautiful lighting in your outdoor kitchen designs. Solar lighting is one way that is both economical and free from hassle. You won’t have to worry about when to switch on the lights as the suns sets, as your solar lights will take care of it all for you.

  • Pre-planning – The only way to get all of these elements to come together on a cohesive, coherent fashion is to do a little planning in advance. Take time to measure out your backyard space and decide which elements will work best where. Have plans drawn up that you can then use to create a space that is equal parts formal and functional. With a little careful planning, you can put together an outdoor kitchen that will be the envy of all your guests.

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