Cooking and sharing meals under the open sky makes for special experiences with family and friends in Hershey, PA. Many outdoor kitchens have evolved into more than a simple grill station. If you have a small outdoor kitchen that’s lacking the must-have features that encourage frequent use, here are seven design ideas to spruce it up.
Many people incorporate indoor conveniences into their outdoor kitchens. But it’s not all about having more amenities; it’s about optimizing the space you have.
Pavilion or Pergola
Shelter makes an outdoor kitchen more welcoming. If shade is your main concern, then a pergola will keep everyone comfortable when the sun is blazing, and the open roof allows for a well-ventilated outdoor kitchen. If you like to cook outdoors in any kind of weather, opt for a pavilion (a solid-roofed structure with open sides) that provides shelter from the elements. A pergola or a pavilion adds a sophisticated touch to a small kitchen and turns it into a real focal point!
Wood-fired Pizza Oven and Outdoor Fireplace
Combine the ambience and warmth of a fireplace with the fun of a pizza oven, and you’ve got an instant hit. Fair warning, the grill may start to play second fiddle to your pizza oven. An outdoor fireplace and/or pizza oven can be faced with the same veneer as the walls of your outdoor kitchen, for a cohesive look.
Bar Peninsula With Storage
One of the aspects that can make an outdoor kitchen more user-friendly is an abundance of storage space, so that everything you need is on hand without frequent trips to the house. A great storage solution is to attach a bar peninsula and put storage underneath. Adding bar seating also transforms your outdoor kitchen into a gathering spot, not just a place to cook. Since many outdoor kitchens are slightly expanded grill stations, creating an L-shaped outdoor kitchen with a bar peninsula adds work space and invites people to share in the cooking experience with you.
A seating wall provides extra seating that doesn’t clutter up the patio, and it’s an attractive way to tie in an outdoor kitchen with other elements such as an outdoor fireplace. Storage can also be incorporated into seating walls—a great solution for storing blankets, extra serving dishes, or firewood. Low voltage lights set into the seating wall also provide ambience and safety without the visual clutter of stand-alone light fixtures.
Ceiling fans make outdoor cooking more pleasurable if the kitchen is situated under a pavilion, where the heat from cooking has a harder time escaping.
Added Landscape Lighting
A bright work space can be more welcoming and user-friendly. If you don’t want your entire cooking area to be covered by a pergola, consider a mini-pergola just over the workstations to provide shade for the cook as well as a space to hang low-voltage light fixtures.
Fresh herbs take your cooking to a new level. Mount planters to the pillars of a pergola or pavilion, or grow herbs in stand-alone masonry planters. Container gardening gives your cooking space a stylish appearance and puts herbs at a convenient height.