Are you still cooking your meals in the house during the summer months? Are you grilling up burgers and hot dogs on a grill in the side yard? Have you been yearning for an outdoor kitchen so you can be an outdoor chef and be poolside with your family?

If so, you will want to know how to plan your outdoor kitchen project in 2019 and when you do that you will be able to move forward with the project and next summer you won’t have to miss any of the poolside fun before you’re indoors preparing a meal.

When you choose an outdoor kitchen that suits your cooking style and your family’s life style you can transform your outdoor living space into a poolside deck into the go-to poolside setting that is welcoming and ideal for hosting a humble barbecue all the way up to a five-star dinner party.

The outdoor kitchen of your dreams will be a balance of style, functionality, function and the budget you have in place to make it all a reality!

outdoor kitchen designHow To Plan Your Outdoor Kitchen Project In 2019

How much space do you:

  1. Want to devote to the kitchen set up
  2. Need between your home and poolside
  3. Will you want between the pool, the outdoor living and seating space and the kitchen set up

For your outdoor kitchen project

Make sure there is ample space for the outdoor kitchen components including:

  1. The cold areas (refrigeration and storage)
  2. Hot areas (grills and ovens)
  3. Wet areas (sinks)
  4. Dry areas (prepping counters).
  5. Seating space or counter space so you can talk with your guests while you prep the meal

Your indoor and outdoor kitchens work together

When you’re setting up your outdoor kitchen take some clues and design ideas from your indoor kitchen. What we mean is that if you don’t have the budget or the space to have a full blown outdoor kitchen set up, make wise decisions on what you simply cannot live without in the outdoor space and cut that out of the project.

For example, you may not really need a full refrigerator or an oven in the outdoor kitchen — your indoor kitchen will suffice to play host to those appliances. You may not want to have a full set of dishes out of doors or you may not need a full sink.

Think about what you simply cannot live without in the outdoor space. When designing the outdoor kitchen consider how it will flow from the yard to the indoor space to make it easy to carry items back and forth. Consider getting a drink trolley to move dishes and heavier foods from the house to the outdoor kitchen. There are myriad ways to make the spaces work together and make it easier for you to be out of doors in the summer.

What do you simply need to have?

After your budget has been put together and you’ve decided how much space to devote to the kitchen, you need to decide what you simply cannot live without and what you can live without for a short time (until you get a bigger budget, for example) and what you truly don’t care if you have as part of the project.

Make a list of the kitchen essentials you use regularly. Make a list of what you may have doubles of that can be moved to the outdoor kitchen. What can you simply not live without — utensils, outdoor only cooking pans, cabinets, a prep space with a sink, countertop space for eating as well as meal prep?

Do you want a grill that is built into a regular stove top? A pizza oven? How many burners do you need on your stovetop? You also need to decide if you need high end appliances and chef level items. If you have a chef’s kitchen indoors with high end appliances, do you need or want that outdoors as well or will your outdoor kitchen be more laid back and perhaps more cost effective?

After the budget has been put together and you’ve considered the layout of the area, talk with your pool contractor. He may be able to do the work for your outdoor kitchen or he may be able to point you to contractors with whom he has worked who can construct the kitchen.

Budget friendly kitchen set up

A budget-friendly way to save money is by investing in a pre-fabricated outdoor kitchen. You can invest in one of these from your local hardware store. They are typically complete, come in various wood styles and set ups and will leave money in your budget to spend on other areas of the outdoor kitchen.

outdoor kitchen upgradesWeather resistant is key

This should go without saying, but you will want to look for weather resistant appliances and cabinetry. You may have a roof over your outdoor kitchen set up, but the wind and rain and weather will still have a negative impact on it unless you are investing in appliances and cupboards that are meant to be used in an outdoor setting.

Invest in stainless steel. This is beautiful, timeless and weather resistant.

Don’t invest in any porous materials either for the cabinetry or the countertops or cook surfaces and other areas like the food prep areas. Limestone, for example, is beautiful, but not practical out-of-doors.

Leave the electricity and plumbing to the pros

You may be able to wield a hammer and design the outdoor kitchen area, but we urge you to leave electricty and plumbing to the licensed professionals and a licensed contractor. The set ups will need to be inspected by your local home inspector and they may require the work be performed by a licensed technician. Know what you’re getting into and leave items you aren’t equipped to do, to the professionals.

Will the outdoor kitchen complement your home design or contrast it?

Some outdoor kitchen owners wnat their outdoor space to be a seamless extension of the home. Other outdoor kitchen owners want the kitchen in the backyard to look as though it is a completely different set up and feel from the home. Know your unique design style and determine what aesthetic you’re seeking.

Begin your budget planning today then talk with your pool contractor and gain an understanding of what you can afford to have in your outdoor kitchen area then kick off the project!