DIY Outdoor Kitchen: 5 Mistakes to Avoid

Adding outdoor kitchens to a home is becoming a major trend these days. It’s a great way to increase the living space of your home and to get you out of your more formal indoor kitchen once in a while too. There is also something peaceful and relaxing about spending more time outside.

What can really take away from this experience is building an outdoor kitchen that was not designed properly. It happens all too often and as a result, people do not get the full value out of this additional living space. You don’t want that to happen to you when building your new outdoor kitchen so try to plan properly in order to avoid these common outdoor kitchen building mistakes.

  1. Don’t put it in a poor location

There is absolutely no doubt about it. The location where you put your outdoor kitchen is extremely critical. Where you locate it will have a dramatic effect on how much you use your outdoor kitchen and how much you enjoy using it. Here are three ‘no’ when locating your DIY kitchen.

  • Putting it in a place where such things as smoke from outdoor gas cookers and noise will affect your inside living space
  • Locating it in a high traffic area to your backyard
  • Building it where it will partially obstruct your view


  1. Don’t do the design before you know what appliances will go into your new outdoor kitchen

This is by far one of the biggest mistakes that people make when they are building an outdoor kitchen. They try to fit the appliances into the design as opposed to designing the kitchen around the appliances. Oftentimes this will result in lost space and layouts that are not practical or as functional as they should be.

When you design your new outdoor kitchen around the appliances that will go into it, the finished results are better for many reasons. You will accomplish such things as using your available space more appropriately. The finished kitchen will also look more open and be more functional too. So know what the size of the refrigerator, grill, patio stoves and other appliances will be before you draw up your design.

  1. Don’t use materials that cannot handle the outdoor environment

Too many times people use cheap wood, particle board and other poor materials to build cupboards, cabinets, counters and other features of their outdoor kitchens. This is a recipe for disaster. Some of the materials that make your indoor kitchen look great will not cut it in a much harsher outdoor setting. This is true even if your outdoor kitchen is covered.

There are many newer types of material available that will not be affected by moisture, smoke, heat and other outdoor environmental factors. Synthetic wood and durable carbon fiber materials work great in an outdoor kitchen. You may spend a little more money initially as a result but it will save you money on repair bills and headaches in the long run.

  1. Don’t forget the storage

How many times have you been over to a friend’s house for a barbeque and seen this scenario? As you are chatting the person who is doing the cooking has to stop on a regular basis and run into the house to get something. This may be spices, plates for the meat or even to get you another cold beer. All of this could have been eliminated by simply installing practical storage space in that outside kitchen area.

Make sure you have cupboards, cabinets and other smartly configured storage area built into your outside kitchen. Be sure not to forget to put at least a compact refrigerator in your new outdoor kitchen too.

  1. Don’t forget the usable counter space

You would not dream of having a kitchen inside your home that was not built with adequate counter space so why would you build an outdoor kitchen any differently. This happens all the time in the design of outdoor kitchens and why that tends to be a big mystery.

So make sure you have a big enough area in your kitchen to add some usable counter space.

Mistake Free Designs Will Help You Get the Most Out of Your New Outdoor Kitchen

Having an outdoor kitchen can really change your life around your home. That will only be the case if it’s located and designed right.

As a general rule build your outdoor kitchen to be as simple to use and as independently functional as your indoor kitchen. The one exception to this is you need to use weatherproof materials.

If you avoid these common outdoor kitchen design mistakes you will then be rewarded with many happy and relaxing moments spent in your new outdoor kitchen.


This was a guest post by Paul Dawson.  Paul Dawson is a fan of innovations and creative ideas. He also researches the market to pick the best products for potential buyers.

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