outdoor kitchen

GORGEOUS GRILLS: The perfect outdoor kitchen

GORGEOUS GRILLS: The perfect outdoor kitchen

Add an outdoor kitchen for perfect summer entertaining…

The rise of the outdoor kitchen has been unstoppable with our desire to make the most of al fresco dining. A simple barbecue might be enough for a weeknight dinner, but for the ultimate set-up, consider adding pizza ovens, tandoor, a prep area, a sink and a fridge so you have all you need at your fingertips.

Firstly, look at your outdoor space. Talk to outdoor kitchen specialists and landscape gardeners about what might work for you. Want to catch the evening sun? Need to be close to plumbing and electricity? Close to the house or a garden room? For ease, the kitchen should be near to where you’ll eat.

You’ll need sturdy surfaces for prep andfor cooking. You also need to consider how far away you should be from overhanging trees and fences. And how to keep pets and young children away from hot surfaces.

Make a wishlist – a barbecue grill, for sure, but do you want something like the Egg or Kamado that can also be used for slow cooking, smoking and baking? Do you want a gas burner ring for pans, a bar area, even? Then narrow it down to what you will actually use.

IMAGES left to right: The Outdoor Kitchen Collective x8, Cuckooland, Kamado, Grillo, Vlaze
Top image: The Outdoor Kitchen Collective

Are you going to go DIY, off-the-shelf or bespoke? Much will depend on your budget and how quickly you want your outdoor kitchen. Simple solutions can cost from £500, one with the wow factor from £10,000 to £50,000. Look at modular options that you can add to each year or adapt to suit how you like to cook and entertain. If you want ultimate flexibility, then a freestanding solution on wheels might be for you.

Choose an outdoor kitchen made from hard-wearing materials such as concrete or powder-coated stainless steel. Worktops need to be durable and easy to clean – try ceramic. Consider adding a canopy so you can cook outdoors come rain or shine, and have it extend over your eating area. But remember you’ll still need adequate ventilation. Add shelves and cupboards to keep things neat and tidy and to save you traipsing back inside when you need something – but also consider items can go rusty or end up covered in cobwebs so work out how and what to store outside. Grow herbs in pots on walls in your kitchen area to add a pretty and useful feature. Some herbs such as spearmint and thyme can also keep wasps away!