Outdoor Kitchen Frequently Asked Questions
At Outdoor Specialties, we get a lot of interest in outdoor kitchens this time of year. Everyone is looking to enhance their outdoor space, and our outdoor living consultants are in the store all day answering questions and helping clients plan their projects. Here are some of the common questions about outdoor kitchens we get from our Maryland customers.
Why should I get an outdoor kitchen?
The major appeal of outdoor kitchens is outdoor cooking. If you love spending time outside and you love food fresh off the grill, then an outdoor kitchen is for you. Be sure to include an outdoor dining area as well, so that you can enjoy your meals al fresco. Other benefits to consider:
- Easy cleanup and no pots and pans to wash
- Cook large quantities of food in one set
- Keep your home cool in summer by not using the oven
What does a basic outdoor kitchen include?
A very basic outdoor kitchen has a grill surrounded by counter space and cabinets. This setup provides room for food prep, as well as storage space for plates, utensils and other kitchen gadgets. At the very least, with an outdoor kitchen you don’t have to constantly run in and out of the house with plates and condiments. You will have enough space to place your meats, veggies, sauces and spices by your grill and cook in peace.
What if I want a high-end outdoor kitchen?
A high-end outdoor kitchen starts with a high-end grill (or multiple grills). Once you have your grills picked out, consider adding these features and appliances to your outdoor kitchen setup:
- Pizza oven
- Warming drawers
- Bar counter
- Outdoor dishwasher
- Microwave oven
Can I build an outdoor kitchen on a deck?
While outdoor kitchens are most commonly built on a patio, it may be possible to add an outdoor kitchen to your existing or new deck. The biggest issues you may run into are space and weight. A full-scale outdoor kitchen takes up a good amount of space (3×7 feet is a popular size). The most common layout is probably the L-shape, but you can also arrange all components into a U-shape, one line or even use 2-3 detached islands. If you think there is enough room on your deck, the next step is to ensure support. Grills tend to be heavy, especially if you have a few. Counters, drawers and the entire cabinet structure also add extra weight. Consult with a deck contractor to make sure your deck can support your outdoor kitchen.
How much does an outdoor kitchen cost?
The cost of outdoor kitchens varies a lot depending on the setup. Your outdoor kitchen could run anywhere from $5,000 to $50,000 and up! Start by finding a good built-in grill that will last outdoors and is easy to use. A grill is something you may want to splurge on, because your entire outdoor kitchen will be built around it. If you want multiple cooking surfaces, the price of appliances alone can be $5,000 to $10,000.
Next, consider any extras you may want include. For example, a sink and refrigerator are convenient extras and will require connecting plumbing or electricity to your outdoor kitchen. Both are not cheap and may involve digging and re-configuring of your utilities. Also consider the size of your kitchen and the type of finishes. If you are looking for savings, go with imitation materials instead of the real natural stone. The island structure alone will cost several thousand dollars depending on the size. If you pick expensive granite or marble for counter tops, the price can easily double.
Have any other outdoor kitchen questions we haven’t answered here? Feel free to give us a call or stop by our Hampstead, MD outdoor living showroom to speak with one of our consultants!