How to choose the right Outdoor Kitchen

When planning an outdoor kitchen, there are a few things you will need to consider. In this guide, we hope to give you some general information to get you started.

When planning an outdoor kitchen, there are a few things you will need to consider. In this guide, we hope to give you some general information to get you started. 

Table of Contents

Where is the best location to put my outdoor kitchen?

The kitchen will need to be built on a solid surface, such as a patio or deck. We would suggest that you position your outdoor kitchen in a place where it would not obstruct any existing views.

Some of our clients prefer to place their outdoor kitchen in a shaded area, and some prefer to position it in the sunshine. We would not recommend your kitchen to be positioned under any trees, due to the ongoing cleaning and debris. However, if this is the only option, we can recommend companies who can make a specially fitted cover to protect your kitchen- as seen in the photos below. 

Often, our clients will finish their kitchen off with a bioclimatic pergola, which is a great option to give your kitchen a more permanent solution to shading and protection from rain and bad weather. Here’s a few examples of pergolas fitted.

Other pergolas and canopy solutions are available, we’d be happy to advise and recommend products to best suit your outdoor living space and budget. 

When considering the location of your kitchen, you may want to take into account your existing services such as water, waste, and power supply. It can be costly to run utilities a long distance. The burners and grills are generally run by charcoal/wood or LPG bottled gas. 

What Outdoor Kitchen appliances do I need?

Let’s start with the cooking. A lot will depend on what type of cooking you will be doing in your outdoor kitchen: grilling, frying, roasting, baking, or a bit of everything! 

Built-in gas BBQ grill

These come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. Some of them have added extras such as searing burners for steaks, rotisseries for grilling large lumps of meat, and flat plates for frying food like bacon, eggs, vegetables and fish. 

There are a huge variety of outdoor cooking appliances on the market. Here is a simple guide to some of the most popular brands we use and our clients love. We also have access to lesser-known brands and their economic ranges. All About Outdoor Living are happy to advise you on the best grill to suit your needs. 

Types of BBQ Grills

Whistler Burford 5

Whistler Burford 5 burner built-in grill

Whistler grill is a company based in the UK. The Burford built-in BBQs are offered in three different sizes, to suit all outdoor kitchens and are top quality in every aspect. These BBQs will form the centerpiece of your bespoke kitchen for years to come. Supplied complete with all-weather cover and separate rotisserie. 

Beefeater Signature 5 burner

Beefeater Signature 3000 range

Beefeater grills are made in Australia and sold under license in the UK

Key Features

  • The flavor is sealed in with the powerful and durable 5.3 KW either cast iron or stainless steel burner rails.
  • It has a stainless steel drip tray which collects the grease and allows easy cleaning 
  • The food is cooked evenly via the cast iron v-shaped grill plates or the 304 stainless steel grill plates 
  • Quartz easy start ignition system on every burner 
  • The lid is double-skinned and has a unique enamel temperature gauge and a glass viewing window to assist whilst direct cooking 
  • Comes in three different sizes 
  • Anti-flare vaporisers and heat reflectors promote power and control the flame for maximum flavor
  • Start cooking quickly and easily with the quartz start ignition system on every burner
  • Double skin stainless steel roasting hood or heavy gauge enamel with an integrated temperature gauge for top-class indirect cooking
  • Large viewing window to assist when indirect cooking
  • Brush aluminum control knobs on stainless steel models

Napoleon Prestige Pro 665

Napoleon grills

BUILT-IN PRESTIGE PRO™️ 665 RB

A bespoke outdoor kitchen deserves to have a big and beautiful grill. The Built-in Prestige PRO™️ 665 Propane Gas Grill with Infrared Rear Burner features seven burners of grilling bliss. Durable stainless steel features chrome accents for luxury and durability. Grill after dark with LED Spectrum Lighting system Control Knobs, with near limitless colour possibilities. Also, the SafetyGlow feature turns the lights red when a burner is in use. Know which burners are lit so you can get the perfect sear or ideal indirect grilling temperature. The oven-like performance of this grill allows you to bake and roast with ease, sear over high heat, and the rear burner makes delicious rotisserie meals in no time. You will know it’s a Napoleon with the iconic WAVE™️ cooking grids and proximity lighting. The integrated smoker tube and dedicated burner can even turn this grill into a smoker, while interior lights let you grill well past dark. Perfect and professional, the PRO™️ 665 Built-in Grill Head is the perfect grill for your bespoke outdoor kitchen. 

Broil King regal 570

Built In Grill Head

All of the Broil King products are built to provide unparalleled cooking versatility. In particular, the Broil King Regal 570 is made from die-cast aluminum and high-grade stainless steel. These BBQs provide excellent heat retention and long-lasting durability.

The Broil King cast iron cooking grids are built for excellent heat retention and exceptional searing power to lock in juices and flavor.

The Regal Built-in 570 features a built-in rear rotisserie burner and includes the fantastic mains-powered rotisserie unit. All of this gives yet more options to cook with. 

The stainless steel Flav-R-Wave cooking system provides superior heat distribution across the surface of the grill. Underneath it, are 5 main Dual-Tube tubular burners, made from heavy-duty stainless steel. This large diameter, tube-in-tube side ported burners provide a unique even heat distribution.

The slide-out drip tray is subtly housed within the BBQ enclosure and allows easy cleaning. This, together with blue LED control dial lights.

Bull BBQ Brahma Built-In 5 Burner

Brahma Built-In 5 Burner Gas Barbecue 97cm

The Brahma grill is a 5-Burner 97cm Stainless Steel Built-In Gas Barbecue Grill with an Infrared Back Burner. This BBQ features the Bull-Fire Ignition System – a gas jet ignited by a spark that fires a flame along the burner to ensure a quick and reliable burner ignition every time. The Reliably Technology is a fantastic feature in this BBQ that combats uneven and unpredictable heat distribution at the cooking surface that is often found in other barbecues, this has been proven by engineers to improve heat distribution by up to 50% allowing you to use your complete cooking surface with great results. The warranty on Bull BBQs also surpasses anything available on the market today backing up the quality of the components so you can buy with complete peace of mind. The heavy-duty cast 304 stainless steel burners inside this grill is rock solid in terms of performance and quality this is why Bull back this up with a genuine lifetime warranty.

Wolf outdoor built-in BBQ

Wolf outdoor built-in  

The Wolf 137 cm Built-In Outdoor Gas Grill gives you the same kind of precision control and ease-of-use features as its indoor counterparts – Wolf ranges, ovens, and cooktops. Sear a fillet, grill vegetables, and smoke trout or applewood bacon. The juicy possibilities are endless.

The ICBOG54 has six individually contained burners for independent heat control, including an infrared sear zone up to 29 MJ to seal in juices, and a pair of two-position rotisseries for chicken or pork at its most succulent. Late-night dinner? Halogen lights illuminate the grilling surface, and the signature red control knobs are LED lit for easy reading. In sculpted stainless steel, it may be the last grill you’ll ever need to buy.

Charcoal cooking

Charcoal cooking still remains a popular choice. Although the heating up of the fuel can take longer than the gas option and can take a little more time to clean and maintain, some clients prefer the more traditional BBQ experience. 

Due to the extreme heat that a charcoal BBQ produces, there are only a few specialist companies who will supply charcoal built-in BBQ. (Fire Magic and Bull). There are many more stand-alone charcoal BBQs available on the market. 

Fire Magic

Fire Magic charcoal built-in grill can be placed in a bespoke outdoor kitchen. The Fire Master is operated by a handle on the front that adjusts the height of the charcoal pan, giving you lots of cooking options without burning your food. 

There is also a front hatch giving you access to the charcoal. This is a great option for the charcoal cooking lover. 

Bull Bison Charcoal Grill

The Bison Charcoal Grill head, manufactured by BULL, has been re-engineered for greater performance. The new vent system allows for greater temperature control with the ability to regulate the oxygen flow into the burning charcoal. Now, you can set up the Bull Bison for slow and low BBQ, or open it up to get that steak house quality sear on your meats. The Bison Built-In is a 76cm Stainless Steel Charcoal Barbecue Grill. A perfect fit for your bespoke outdoor kitchen.

Kamado

These ceramic, clay-lined, egg-shaped appliances are stylish and hugely popular. 

These world-renowned ceramic grills pack the latest technology and meticulous craftsmanship inside each iconic red barbecue. The thick-walled, heat-resistant shell locks in smoke and moisture at any temperature. The quality of the Kamado Joe is one of the best we’ve ever seen. 

The ceramic walls are also great for increasing charcoal efficiency. You don’t need as much charcoal to reach the same temperatures as a traditional charcoal BBQ and it will burn longer.

Kamado Joe grills use true charcoal or lump charcoal fuel rather than the presoaked charcoal or traditional charcoal and lighter fluid. Cooking in a Kamado-style grill provides true smoke and charcoal flavor. 

The Big Green Egg

The EGG is much more than just a grill… it is a complete outdoor cooking system. It is engineered to be stronger, more durable, and provide better heat retention than any outdoor cooker on the market. While most grills retreat in the colder months, the thermal efficiency of an EGG performs as well in winter as it does all summer. The EGG has an exterior glaze that easily wipes clean. Inside, residual heat burns away any build-up – just like a self-cleaning oven.

The EGG is known for its convenience, versatility, and fantastic cooking results. 

High-Temp Grill

Sear steaks, chops, burgers and seafood with a flavorful crust unmatched by other grills. High-temp steakhouse chargrilling – even stir-frying – is so quick and easy you’ll look for reasons to eat at home!

Roaster

Gatherings are more memorable when you roast a juicy turkey, rack of lamb or ham on a Big Green Egg. The superior cooking qualities produce the most flavorful roasts, braises and stews you’ve ever tasted.

Low & Slow Smoker

The EGG’s insulating ceramics allow for precise temp control even at a lower heat. Want to barbecue at low heat for 16 hours or longer? No problem! An EGG can do that on a single fill of natural lump charcoal.

Outdoor Oven

The EGG bakes bread, cooks casseroles and desserts better than your kitchen oven. 

These are the best selling Kamado products on the market. We do have access to cheaper models copied and manufactured in China, however, we would recommend you buy the genuine products for longevity.

What is the best gas to use for an Outdoor Kitchen?

I often get asked about the best gas to use when cooking outdoors. The most common is LPG or bottled gas. You will need to buy a couple of bottles of gas if you don’t want to run out. My favorite gas is Calor.

13kg Patio gas bottle (Propane)

This bottle is available at many Calor gas retailers but is currently unavailable to buy online. Please check with a Calor retailer for local availability. We recommend calling before traveling to check if they have the bottle you are after. Ideal for patio heaters and large BBQs with 4 burners or more.

The 13kg Patio gas bottle is fitted with an innovative Gas Trac® indicator that lets you know how much gas you have remaining.

How do I connect an outdoor BBQ to a gas bottle?

If you’re new to using gas bottles, you will need to follow the instructions on the appliances and also get used to removing the regulator from the bottle.

What is a Cylinder Refill Agreement?

When you buy a gas bottle from a retailer you’ll be asked to pay for and agree to the Cylinder Refill Agreement which legally states that the cylinder always remains the property of Calor Gas Limited. When it’s empty, you can simply exchange it for a pre-filled cylinder within the same category group, or return the cylinder in good order to a Calor Centre for a partial refund.

Which regulator do I need?

The appliance should come fitted with the correct regulator for that product, if in doubt please ask the help of the retailer.

Do I need a sink?

When preparing food outside, having a water supply and sink top space handy will make life easier and your outdoor prep space run more smoothly. Outdoor sinks are usually only fitted with a cold water supply. A hot water heater can be installed, but it is advised to ensure you have a frost-protected heater unless you are planning to drain and isolate the unit in the winter months. As mentioned previously, if you would like to include a sink in your outdoor kitchen, you will need to think about your fresh water supply and wastewater collection. 

We think a sink is a great option to have, providing there is an adequate water supply and there is a waste connection available. The sink in an outdoor kitchen is generally used to rinse plates and glasses, It’s a handy thing to have when preparing food, and washing salads and vegetables. And of course, washing your hands.

Stainless steel sinks are the most popular sink in an outdoor kitchen. They are available as drop-in or under-mounted sinks. Ceramic butler sinks look great but can mark easily when cleaning metal grills so it’s worth considering the main use of your outdoor sink when making your decision.

The sink to use is stainless steel about 500mm square. This will be big enough for most plates. There are many options available, the most popular is to be mounted under the worktop, or there are sinks that sit on top.

The All About Outdoor Team will happily advise you about plumbing solutions when designing your outdoor kitchen. 

The taps are generally the same as your indoor kitchen taps. Here are some examples below of some popular choices. 

What is the kitchen made of?

There are many materials used in building an outdoor kitchen. At All About Outdoor Living, we think the most suitable material is galvanised steel framework, it’s lightweight, strong, and will withstand all types of weather. 

We are also able to build in solid block work, but we feel that the galvanised steel framework is a better option when building an outdoor kitchen.

Both options are non-combustible and this is the most important factor when building an outdoor kitchen.

The frame will then be clad in a non-combustible boarding and before cloaked with a porcelain tile or timber cladding. In our opinion, porcelain is the better option as it is generally safer and is easier to clean. 

Porcelain tiles

Timber cladding

Whistler Cirencester range

This is a ready-made kitchen and a fantastic option for the lower budget. These kitchens are delivered to your door and are self-assembled with just screws and wing nuts. It’s very simple to put together and has amazing quality too. The unique thing about this kitchen is that it is movable. The units can be purchased separately or as a complete kitchen.

You will need a power supply, and water if the sink is being used. We can offer this kitchen price on application and can assist in the installation if required at an extra cost. 

How much worktop space do you need for an outdoor kitchen?

When we design an outdoor kitchen we pay a lot of attention to the amount of available worktop space. Similar to your indoor kitchen, you can never have too much worktop space. It is surprising how much space can get eaten up by the appliances and it is often a good idea to allow more than you think you will need. A very useful space is above a fridge as this normally is vacant and not used for any other use than the preparation of drinks and food. If you are including a pizza oven you need to allow the sufficient area to prepare the pizza and have room for the toppings! The worktop needs to be a nonporous surface that can be easily cleaned. 

What is the best surface for an outdoor kitchen?

Granite is ideal for an outdoor kitchen. If you have a porous surface be sure to include room for a large preparation board.

If you are having a sink be sure to allow room to the side of the sink to drain whatever you are washing or rinsing. The key is to get a professional outdoor kitchen designer to create a layout for you to incorporate all your wish list of appliances and have enough room to use them! All About Outdoor Living can help, we are experienced designers and can put some designs together for you in a very short period of time.

What worktops are used?

We recommend a polished granite or marble worktop. Although there are a lot of options available, these natural stone tops are proven to be the most durable and suitable for outdoor use.

Polished granite: Absolute black worktop

Light grey

Polished concrete is on trend at the moment and looks fantastic when installed. It has been known to stain and fade over time if it isn’t sealed correctly. 

Unfortunately, Timber, Quartz’s and Formica worktops are not suitable for outdoor kitchens.

Raised bars and extended worktops help to make your outdoor kitchen a more sociable place to gather by creating the perfect seating and eating area. 

What storage and cupboards are available?

There are several options when it comes to doors and cupboards in a bespoke outdoor kitchen. If you are looking for a long-lasting outdoor kitchen, you really need to go for stainless steel, purpose-made products.

An outdoor kitchen isn’t a good place to store food, plates or cutlery unless in a sealed container or drawer unit. 

The most useful unit is the bin! There are trash bins available as a combination with triple drawers. 

There are single and double doors for access and larger doors for storing and hiding the gas bottles. 

There are single-drawer units and triple-drawer units. All are designed to be installed in a bespoke kitchen and the height is calculated to fit beneath the appliances.

Cupboard doors

The doors are manufactured to withstand all weather conditions, made from top-quality stainless steel.

These doors and cupboards come in all different sizes and are the correct size to fit under the appliances. You can get Trash drawers and triple drawer units. There are single doors for access and double doors for storage. We always recommend you put any perishables in a sealed box.

There are tall doors to allow for the tall gas bottles with ease. The cupboard door is just a front and will not have a cupboard behind. We generally raise the floor in the cupboards and tile them to give a dry surface. The kitchen is designed to have rainwater running through them.

Storage space

When All About Outdoor Living design an outdoor kitchen, we try and achieve as much storage as possible.

The appliances have covers provided but these will not stop the rain penetration into the cupboards. So if you are storing charcoal or kindling make sure they are in a waterproof container. A wood store on an outdoor kitchen is a good idea and it really looks great.

Outdoor bar area

The outdoor kitchen is a perfect place to incorporate a bar area.

We will always advise you that the type of seating you buy for this bar is important, we have come across many mistakes by clients who go online and purchased chairs and stools for their new outdoor kitchen and they just don’t fit!

It is most important to get the dimensions to the underside of the bar worktop. This will give you a better idea of what to look for. We don’t recommend stools with arms as they won’t push under the bar when not in use and are difficult to get up on and off.

Try and get an adjustable height stool with a swivel seat, this will cover all eventualities. Most importantly ensure they are suitable for outdoor use

 Removable cushions are a good idea as they will get moldy over time if left out.

Will building an outdoor kitchen add value to my property?

A beautiful, all-encompassing outdoor kitchen can generate a 100-200% ROI depending on the location of your home.

If you have any questions about our products or services or would like to discuss plans for your outdoor kitchen, please get in touch with our team: 

sales@allaboutoutdoorliving.com | 07711 071505

Enquiry form

Be a part of lots of happy customers.

    Choose a Service*

    Your Name*

    Email Address*

    Phone Number*

    Project Details*

    Follow us on Instagram

    @allaboutoutdoorliving