Outdoor kitchens combine stylish design and functionality and act as a warm place for people to gather over food. The heart of the home is always around any eating area, and outdoor kitchens are no exception! Whether you want to create an outdoor kitchen or update your existing outdoor kitchen equipment, we have a few tips for you to consider.
Barbecue grills are the standard when cooking outdoors, yet many other appliances permit you to experiment with additional ingredients and teach you new cooking techniques. They enhance your overall experience when cooking outdoors and add to the flavorful aroma wafting through the air welcoming guests to the backyard.
What Appliances Should I Consider for my Outdoor Kitchen?
The best appliances provide a superior outdoor cooking experience. The correct accessories and design can turn your outdoor kitchen into a culinary sanctuary. Your choice of appliances is important as you want quality items. But equally important is how each appliance is organized. This will allow you to be more efficient and organized in your outdoor kitchen.
It is only natural for family or friends to wander to the backyard when the aroma of food tantalizes their taste buds, and it is also not unusual for adults to step outside to unwind. An outdoor drink center comes in handy as it allows you to stock up on all your beverage essentials and have them on hand whenever you need them.
Whether it is having a beer with friends as you grill steaks and talk about last night’s game or sipping a glass of wine by the fireplace, beverage centers are a handy essential to have. They eliminate the constant need to return to the indoor kitchen and allow you to relax outdoors.
This outdoor beverage center has a commercial glass door with a stainless-steel interior for added durability. The glass door lets you quickly see whether you need to restock the fridge or see what is inside briefly. The door is reversible, and the LED lighting offers an attractive display of your beverages.
- Three chrome shelves accompanied by cantilevered clips
- Security lock and open door alarm
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- Weatherproof design for reliable beverage storage in outdoor settings
- Meets UL-471 and is ETL-S listed to NSF-7 commercial standards
- Reversible glass door and LED lighting provide an attractive display of stored products
- Includes three chrome shelves with cantilevered clips
- Factory-installed lock provides security you can count on
A warming drawer can quickly become a necessity in any backyard. Keeping items cool isn’t always as big a challenge as keeping them warm. While barbecuing, you may discover that you need to serve multiple items for your meal. You don’t want anything to cool down and lose flavor, and who wants to go inside and reheat it using the microwave?
Built-in warming drawers come in handy in this scenario. They let you keep cooked foods warm while the rest of the meal is cooking, maintaining foods at a safe temperature without overcooking your food or drying it out.
Sometimes they are included with a traditional household range but are equally practical in an outdoor kitchen. They add a stylish touch that simplifies cooking and hosting duties.
This warming drawer won’t overcook your food and it keeps food warm. Using 16-gauge 304 stainless steel, this warming drawer will withstand weather changes and is extra durable. Users can manage their storage conditions using the moisture vents and the temperature control knob.
It comes with five stainless steel buffet pans with lids that are removable when you need them. They are all different sizes, meaning you’ll always have the perfect size to contain each of your dishes.
- Durable and withstands changing weather
- Comes with trays and lids
- Can adjust temperature
- Could be bigger to support large gatherings
- Heavy-Duty Construction - 304 stainless steel construction for an attractive appearance and increased durability
- Variable Temperature Control - Accommodates a wide range of heat settings
- Moisture Vent Control - Keeps food from drying out
- Power and Heat Lights - Provides quick visual feedback
- Overall Dimensions - 30 x 21 x 11.5 inches (W x D x H); Cutout Dimensions - 28.5 x 21 x 11.5 inches (W x D x H)
Every once in a while, you get that craving for oven-baked pizza. There is nothing like pulling that gooey, stringy, melted cheese off the slice as you eat it or that smoky pizza smell wafting through the air.
Why go out when you can create that perfect customized artisan pizza in the comfort of your own backyard? Pizza ovens can be built into an outdoor kitchen or a simple tabletop model. They have a small footprint and make excellent pizzas. They are additionally great for making cookies, bread, and some entrees.
The Roccbox Gozney portable outdoor pizza oven is one of the most sought-after pizza ovens on the market. It is a portable oven that uses a stone to cook pizza on. By allowing you to reach higher temperatures (932° F), this pizza oven perfectly combines a thin base with a puffed crust in about one minute.
- Gas and wood-fueled. This pizza oven comes with a gas burner, but you can purchase a detachable wood burner separately.
- Outer silicone skin and the insulated body make this oven very safe by reducing the chance of burns prevalent with ovens with a metal body.
- Highly acclaimed by The Times, GQ, Forbes. Serious Eats rated it the number one outdoor stand-alone pizza oven.
- Steeper learning curve when cooking
- Smaller size
- READY TO GO - with inbuilt thermometer, retractable legs and detachable dual-fuel burners Roccbox is easy to transport and set up- just click the switch and start cooking! Includes professional grade pizza peel worth $85.
Foodies or those who appreciate smoked meats will love this appliance! They can be either built into a countertop with grilling capabilities or can be standalone. Built-in models will allow you to have more working space to prepare meals. However, standalone models will fit easily in the backyard and let you wheel them in different locations to create space.
As for smokers, experts suggest either a wood pellet outdoor grill or buying a smoker if you want to do some slow cooking.
This 30” corded electric smoker has a digital panel that controls cook time and cooking temperature with the on/off switch. The max temperature setting is 275°F. It can hold two turkeys, four racks of ribs, four pork butts, and six chickens.
- Wood chips are loaded on the side, allowing users to add more without opening the door
- Thermostat temperature allows for consistent, even smoking of your meats
- Insulated body effectively retains heat
- Common for the temperature to decrease by 20° when adding chips, but it quickly rises again
- Temperature control isn’t the best
- Digital panel controls on/off, cooking temperature and time
- Electric Smoker dimensions – 20.47" W x 19.88" L x 33.26" H | Max temperature setting – 275ᵒ F | Inside capacity – 2 Turkeys, 4 Pork Butts, 4 Racks of Ribs, 6 Chickens
- Patented side wood chip loading system allows you to add wood chips without opening door
- Thermostat-temperature control for even, consistent smoking
- Fully-insulated body retains heat
This 36” propane smoker is fueled by liquefied petroleum gas. It has a spacious 5.45 sq. foot interior for ample room to smoke meats and vegetables. It comes equipped with four removable stainless steel shelves and is dishwasher safe.
- Built-in thermometer to accurately monitor temperature
- Adjustable gas supply allows users to control heat
- Twist lock door which seals tightly
- Trays are porcelain enameled and hold wood and water for easy clean-up
- Includes a 40” propane hose with a regulator
- Small water reservoir
- Finicky temperature control
- 5. 45 SQUARE FEET OF INTERIOR: The spacious 5. 45 square foot interior means there is plenty of room to smoke a variety of meats along with several trays of vegetables. The vertical footprint makes it a perfect size for patios and barbecue kitchens.
- Product Dimensions: 19.3" L x 18.1" W x 38.6" H | Weight: 69.5 lb
- FOUR 14 X 14-INCH REMOVABLE STAINLESS STEEL SHELVES: Four stainless steel racks can be easily removed for smoking whole birds or large cuts of meat. Racks are dishwasher safe, making cleanup easy.
- BUILT-IN THERMOMETER: Features easy-to-read thermometer on the front door for accessible monitoring of the internal temperature.
- TOTAL TEMPERATURE AND SMOKE CONTROL: An adjustable gas supply gives control over the amount of heat. Optimal smoker access through two doors and a rear vent can be opened or closed to control the amount of heat and smoke exiting the oven.
The grill is essential to any backyard kitchen. A barbecue grill will vary in its fuel types. Each of these fuel types comes with pros and cons with different skill levels to obtain that perfect grill each time. They also come with different accessories and installation configurations.
If you are experienced with grilling, you may appreciate a grill with digital temperature control, temperature probes, and side burners. While they aren’t necessary, they make cooking more convenient and enjoyable and are great for beginners.
The main thing to consider with a grill is the installation and size. If you frequently host large gatherings, you may want a 48” grill so that you can quickly and easily serve your guests their food.
Also, reflect on what grill will compliment your current décor and layout. Built-in grills are installed using outdoor cabinetry. Freestanding grills are wheel-mounted, allowing for mobility.
Best Gas Grill: Weber 44010001
This outdoor grill operates on a standard 20 lb tank of propane gas. The grates are cast-iron and porcelain-enameled to provide exceptional durability and an even cook. The two-burner grill fits small spaces easier and has a powerful grilling system.
- Built-in thermometer in the lid
- Left side table folds down
- Fuel gauge
- Stainless steel deflects heat
- Open cart design
- Difficult to assemble
- May rust
- Your purchase includes One Weber Spirit II E-210 2-Burner Liquid Propane Grill in Black color
- Grill dimensions: Lid Open - 57"H x 48"W x 26"D. Lid Closed - 44.5"H x 48"W x 27"D. Each cooking grate is 10.16” x 17.5", for a combined measurement of approximately 20.32" x 17.5"
- Propane gas grill works with Standard 20 lb LP tank.
- Features: Porcelain-enameled, cast-iron cooking grates, porcelain-enameled lid, iGrill 3 compatible (accessory sold separately), Built-in lid thermometer, Fold-down left side table, Open cart design, Fuel gauge, Stainless steel heat deflector, Panel frame
- Two burner grill is built to fit small spaces, and packed with features such as the powerful GS4 grilling system
Best Charcoal Grill: Char-Griller 2137 Outlaw Charcoal Grill
This premium charcoal grill is the perfect complement to your outdoor kitchen. It is a two-in-one product, allowing you to grill and smoke your meats. This grill has a durable steel construction with a powder-coated finish, allowing for grilling using high heat and slow, low smoking.
- Extra-large cooking area (950 square inches)
- Cast iron grates
- Warming rack
- Side and front shelving
- Easy to clean
- Difficult to navigate when moving
- Rusts over time
- PREMIUM CHARCOAL GRILL - Barrel style Charcoal BBQ Grill & Smoker with heavy-duty steel construction and powder coating finish, perfect for high heat grilling and low and slow smoking
- XXL COOKING AREA - Massive 950 square inch total cooking area fits 38 burgers: 725 square inch primary cooking area with a 225 square inch warming rack
- BARBECUE GRILL FEATURES - Cast Iron Cooking Grates, Adjustable Fire Grate, Bottom Storage Shelf, Warming Rack, Stay Cool Wooden Handle, Wheels, and Front & Side Shelves with Barbecue Grill Tool Storage Hooks
- EASY TO USE & CLEAN - Control the heat levels with ease using the dual dampers and Thermometer, and quickly clean up using the Easy Dump Ash Pan
- DIMENSIONS - 29”L x 49”W x 50”H, 114 lbs (pairs with the Char-Griller 3737 Charcoal Grill Cover and Char-Griller E82424 Smoker Side Fire Box, both sold separately)
Outdoor Ice Makers
Refrigerator drawers are excellent for keeping items cool until you are ready for them. However, wouldn’t it be nice if you could make your own ice instead of lugging heavy bags from the store?
Ice makers are essential for an outdoor kitchen because, of course, you will probably be doing a lot of entertaining in your backyard. Whether your guests are in the mood for signature cocktails or a simple soft drink, you will always have great-tasting ice close by.
This outdoor ice maker generates 50 lbs of ice (cubed) each day and stores 25 lbs. Clean ice production is ensured with its percolating cold plate and in-line water filter.
- Built-in LED light
- Durable stainless steel construction
- Front vent design
- Pump not included to drain water
- Produces up to 50 pounds of cube shaped ice per day with a 25 pound storage capacity
- Energy Star rating ensures operating efficiency
- In-line water filter & percolating cold plate ensure clean ice production
- Digital temperature control concealed behind door for additional protection
- Reversible door hinge to suit specific installation needs
An outdoor refrigerator completes the backyard. Some homeowners elect to have a fridge since it can keep things cool. However, sometimes guests may want some ice in their drink on a hot summer day, which is where the ice maker comes in handy.
Aside from drinks, outdoor fridges are handy when you want to store meat or condiments, chill dishes, store leftovers, and keep items at their proper temperature before cooking.
Outdoor refrigerators prevent you from having to go back and forth to the kitchen for supplies. It simply makes the outdoor experience seamless and efficient.
This refrigerator has a small footprint with a 5.3 cubic feet capacity. Temperature can be adjusted with the control panel and comes with a freezer drawer allowing users to separate foods.
- Double door, slide-out design
- Easy to clean and frost-free
- Fingerprint resistant
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You can use this as either a fridge or a beverage container. It holds up to 160 cans and will remain cold no matter how hot it is outside. It withstands heavy rain and intense heat. Composed of 304-grade stainless steel, it resists corrosion and rust common with outdoor appliances.
- Door auto closes and has a lock
- Shelves adjust
- Easy to move
- May easily scratch in places
- Maintains temperatures as low as 32°F even in very hot climates, unlike normal outdoor fridges
- Rust and corrosion resistant 304 stainless steel is built for all weather conditions
- Capacity to hold your entire 160 can collection
- Auto-closing door with lock keeps your contents cold and safe
- Adjustable shelves let you customize storage space to fit cans and bottles
Honorable Outdoor Mentions
The Blaze 30” Beverage Center comes with an ice bin cooler and sink. Made of stainless steel, it offers front bottle storage accompanied by drainage holes. This allows you to quickly access your beverages and permits a quick clean-up.
The ice bin is completely insulated and has a stainless steel cover.
- Comes with a removable cutting board, soap dispenser, bottle opener, towel rack, and removable three-part tray for condiments
- Durable and weather-resistant
- Requires a 10mm length shank male connector supply line with a hot/cold pair upon installation (not included)
- Some issues with drain screws not going in all the way
These are just some appliances that you can use to enhance your dream outdoor kitchen. Of course, the appliances you choose will depend on the amount of outdoor space you have. There are outdoor kitchens with smokers, wood-fired pizza ovens, and built-in grills. These kitchens tend to be more elaborate, and some are even custom-made.
Our recommendations are more for those with average backyards who wish to create a nice area for cooking, smoking meat, and storing food. It makes everything very convenient and has a smaller footprint. This outdoor kitchen equipment will make grilling much easier.