Building a custom outdoor kitchen is more than just adding a built-in grill and beautiful countertops. When planning your outdoor kitchen project, envision the space as a true kitchen simply moved outdoors. You'll need the right appliances and accessories to make this space a fully functional food prep area. Here are some essentials to discuss with your outdoor kitchen builder.
A vent hood is important if you are adding any type of roof to the outdoor space. The hood provides much-needed ventilation for your gas or charcoal grill, and it also helps cycle out smoke and odors as you cook. There is a wide range of models you can choose that deliver both form and function for your food prep area. If you will be adding separate burners away from the grill, discuss the potential need for two vent hoods in your kitchen.
Outdoor Kitchen Sink
As you prepare foods, you'll need to wash your hands or pour water for cooking, so adding a sink is an important consideration. You'll need to incorporate this into your building plans, as your kitchen builder will need to run both water lines and drainage lines. While some outdoor sinks use the garden hose as a temporary hookup, this option doesn't always yield potable water. Remember that you may also want to use the sink as part of your kitchen's wet bar area. Potable water is a must for this purpose.
If you plan on using your kitchen for nighttime meals, you'll want to make sure there is adequate lighting installed. Fortunately, there are many different options available. You can use LED light strips under the counters, and you can install lighting in the kitchen's roof to illuminate the whole area. Another option would be to install outdoor track lighting along the side of your home. The adjustable track lights can be pointed toward the food prep area, but this option is best when the kitchen is adjacent to the home.
Fried foods tend to go well with barbecue, whether you love French fries or fried mushrooms. Adding professional-grade fryers to the kitchen makes it easy to prepare all your sides and appetizers outside. Talk to your builder about proper drainage for the grease. You may also want to make sure that the fryers are situated close to your vent hood to keep grease and smoke out of the air.
Talk to a company like Craft Custom Outdoors to get your outdoor kitchen project started.