Low Cost Outdoor Kitchen Design

Low cost outdoor kitchen designs. Cooking outdoors is a growing trend, and these products make it possible for many homes.

What can be cooked outdoors?

Virtually any foods can be prepared outside. Grilled items, sauces, dips, vegetables, all work well in an outdoor kitchen.

What are the basic items needed?

The most basic item is a barbecue grill, either gas or charcoal fired.

A chiminea is another addition to the outdoor kitchen because it provides two functions. First, it can be used for cooking simple items, such as hot dogs or s'mores. Second, it throws a lot of heat so guests (and the cook) can be warm in a wide range of temperatures.

Other items are a toaster oven, cook top, rotisserie, microwave.

How can items such as a toaster oven be safely kept outdoors?

The key is a safe shelter for them. But first of all, electricity is needed to power these cooking tools. Many homes now come equipped with electrical outlets in the patio or deck area. If not, a certified electrician can be hired to do the wiring.

It is ideal to have a shelter, such as a roof or overhang so that the outdoor kitchen does not get wet during rain storms.

Another necessary element is a good set of storage cabinets. One idea is to look for outdoor weatherproof cabinets that could be used to store such items as a toaster oven. Another suggestion is to go to a furniture in the raw store and buy pieces to fit your cooking equipment. These pieces can be painted or stained with outdoor coatings. Make sure that they close completely to keeping the cooking equipment safe and dry. It is important to purchase cabinets that leave enough ventilation around the cooking equipment so that the heat does not cause a fire. If you are handy with cabinetry, perhaps you could construct your own weatherproof cabinets, designing them to fit the cooking equipment.

It is also important to turn all equipment off when not in use, and to make sure the cabinets open during cooking (you would NOT want to use any cooking equipment in a closed cabinet).

How does a toaster oven help in outdoor cooking?

A simple toaster oven can be used for a variety of outdoor cooking events. You can heat up refried beans in a casserole dish, or you can heat up rice or other casseroles. You save by not heating up the inside of your house in the summer, and cooking outside lets the cook enjoy the outdoors.

What does a cook top do outdoors?

A single burner can perform a variety of cooking tasks. It can be used to stir fry, to cook rice or to steam veggies. The settings may be different than a regular stove, but practice will help you determine which settings are best.

If you are having an Oriental Barbecue, you can grill the teriyaki chicken outside while stir frying veggies at the same time.

What does a rotisserie do?

Plugging your rotisserie into an outdoor kitchen gives other options to grilled meats. Maybe some guests prefer chicken. This is an ideal way to offer several entree dishes without having to heat up the indoor kitchen.

Is a blender necessary?

A blender is an excellent addition to an outdoor kitchen. Use it to mix smoothies for brunches or to make margaritas for dinner.

What about a microwave?

You can reheat items that have cooled down in the Autumn chill, or warm up dips at the last moment.

What about outdoor cutting surfaces?

You can take regular outdoor tables, preferably the rectangular ones, and place on top of them cutting boards, granite boards, or other surfaces. Or if you are able to work with mosaics or tile, create your own outdoor counter by in-laying these materials.

What exactly is a chiminea?

A chiminea is a Mexican stove, which has a round bottom and a tall slender top, or chimney. It makes a wonderful heater, and can be used to cook very simple items. It is definitely a cozy addition to any outdoor kitchen.

So, in summary, what are the basic elements of an outdoor kitchen?

The basic elements include a barbecue, electrical outlets, toaster oven, single (or double) burner, blender, heat proof countertop (made of tile for example) and weather proof cabinets. If a certified electrician is doing the wiring, be sure to communicate your wattage needs.

An outdoor kitchen adds another "room" for entertaining. And what a great way to use that "extra" toaster oven or blender.

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