60 Outdoor Kitchens That You'll Want In Your Own Backyard

When it's summertime, it can be challenging to have any desire for the indoors, especially when the kitchen feels more like a boiler room. Taking things outdoors can be a welcoming relief. Cookouts with the grill, gingham picnic blankets and folding card tables have long been a part of quintessential Americana. Brown Jordan Outdoor Kitchens notes that even George Washington enjoyed a barbecue in Alexandra, Virginia, back in 1769! And with the rising popularity of outdoor kitchens, you don't have to lose out on the comfortable amenities of your usual cooking and dining space

In addition to a grill, outdoor kitchens can also feature built-in storage and cabinets, a miniature fridge, and even wood-burning ovens. These additions to the typical barbecue setup make your outdoor space feel luxurious, a perfect oasis. Such kitchen options aren't just popular for hot summer nights — Scandinavians and other Northern European nations love incorporating fireplaces into outdoor kitchens to extend the seasons. Check out some of our favorite outdoor kitchens that will have you wondering why you haven't been cooking outside for every meal. 

1. Scandi sensibilities

Outdoor kitchens can reflect your personal style just as much as the interior of your home. Pops of bright, delicate flowers, an intricate backsplash, and robin egg blue accents make this space fun and festive but still functional. 

2. Clean made cozy

Modern minimalism can still be super inviting. Using warm lights on a black-and-white scheme gives the outdoor kitchen a warm, inviting glow. Additionally, because black and white are so versatile, you can change accent pieces with the season.

3. Green fiends

If you find yourself daydreaming of your own secret garden, why not plant it around your outdoor kitchen? Overgrown leafy shrubs, vines, and brightly colored flowers are the only décor you need when it comes to a serene exterior kitchen. 

4. Rustic and classic

Bistro lights and naturally finished wood make this kitchen feel relaxing, while the concrete table and black cabinetry give the space a dramatic, moody edge. Perfect for sipping cocktails into the night and roasting a filet on the Big Green Egg. 

5. Happy hour in your happy place

If you are someone who finds yourself picking up bottles at the liquor store based on how pretty the label is, consider displaying your glassy wares in your outdoor kitchen. Adding a liquor shelf or bar cart is very Palm Springs and gives a particularly festive touch to the area. 

6. Fresh herbs, fresh style

Since your outdoor kitchen may be somewhat limited in space, you want to make design choices that increase its functionality whenever possible. So instead of trinkets or fragile statuettes, consider a few planter pots of fresh herbs to sprinkle into your meals. 

7. Get pizza here

Do you find yourself the unofficial pizza master in your family and friend group? Then consider getting a pizza oven installed into your outdoor kitchen. Models vary in price but start at around $350. 

8. Make your backyard feel like a Catskills retreat

Greyed wood and concrete brick walls give this outdoor kitchen a rustic barnyard edge, similar to many of the finishes found in Catskills resort homes. It's a chic, timeless style that looks gorgeous in any season. 

9. Urban minimalism

Even if you feel like your neighbors' homes are perhaps a bit too close for comfort, building an outdoor kitchen space, rather than just putting a grill in the yard, can offer some much-needed privacy, and it will also make the area feel more intimate and relaxing. 

10. Deliciously eclectic

So maybe you aren't a world-class carpenter — that shouldn't stop you from creating the outdoor kitchen of your dreams. Using found wood, décor, and other materials, you can build out an outdoor kitchen that is perfectly unique. 

11. La vie en rosé

For a true luxe, organic, and boho-chic space, add lush details like a linen fabric canopy, wicker baskets, and of course, a nice bottle of rosé on ice. With an outdoor space like this, you'll never want to go back inside. 

12. Provincially perfect

For those lucky enough to live in a historic home, lean into the details and time period in which your house was born. White-washed stones, dried flowers, and terra cotta vases are perfect touches to bring you back in time. 

13. Consider concrete

Concrete is an affordable material you can pour yourself with a bit of know-how. In addition to being cheaper than lumber, it's also reasonably easy to maintain. Just be sure to give it a food-grade and weather-proof seal. It also gives an outdoor kitchen a cool, industrial edge. 

14. Break it up with mosaics

Tired of the uniform subway tile and white and grey marble backsplashes? Consider opting for a poppier style with a mosaic backsplash. You can DIY it yourself or have it professionally done, but it's sure to make you feel like you're basking in the sunlight of the Mediterranean either way. 

15. Turn the kitchen into a club

Remember the fun you had of building a club or treehouse outside with your friends, creating a space that felt private and a little adventurous? Consider the outdoor kitchen a grownup answer to the fun of youth. Customize your kitchen with a sign, flag, or even signature table cloth to make it feel like an amazing blast from the past. 

16. Keep it simple

To make the outdoor kitchen feel sophisticated, you want it to be an extension of your home décor. If your interior is contemporary and minimalist, you probably don't want to create a Margaritaville-inspired cookout. Use similar finishes, paint colors, and design principles for a cohesive addition to your yard. 

17. Santorini in your backyard

The buildings of Santorini have captivated hearts for centuries thanks to the incredible blue and white color scape. To bring a pop of the med home, use a similar color palette for your own slice of paradise. And make sure to throw some lamb kebabs on the grill for safe measure. 

18. Put Palm Springs in your step

Lover of all things old Hollywood and glamorous? Take a page from the mid-century safe haven to the stars – Palm Springs. Crisp white concrete partitions in fanciful patterns, a bright blue pool, and a grill will make you feel like a true star of yore. 

19. Build into the earth

If you have a natural feature in your yard like a stone wall or even the remnants of a brick wall, consider making them the cornerstone of your design. These features can't be replicated in other formats, so they give a truly unique, organic touch. 

20. Let your BGE shine

A favorite of barbecuers near and far, the Big Green Egg (BGE) should not be stuffed away into a shed but instead displayed proudly. BGEs are beloved for their insulation, low-coal requirements, and ability to create sumptuous, flavorful meals. Their quirky shape also makes them a fun feature in your outdoor kitchen. 

21. Ditch the solo cups

While you probably don't want to put your best china out in your outdoor kitchen and bar area, you can easily class the joint by adding plastic versions of stemware. Besides, in addition to creating needless waste, you don't want to have to worry about restocking your supplies before and after every get-together. 

22. Use multiple wood tones

If you are building your outdoor kitchen yourself, you may be shocked at how high lumber prices are. To help keep your budget in line, swing by a discount lumber yard, head to your hardware store's bargain bin, or scroll through online classifieds. Wood tones do not need to be identical, and showing off the handmade quality of the builtins gives you a ton of artisan credibility. 

23. Make a professional barbecue station

If you've ever had the pleasure of eating barbecue in Austin, Texas, you know that half of the experience of waiting in line for hours for brisket and Fixins is the quintessential Texas BBQ joint atmosphere. Bring a little bit of that rustic spice to your outdoor kitchen design, and you'll wonder why you ever left home for world-class BBQ. 

24. Vertical thinking

You may be wondering how you'll be able to functionally cook outside when your indoor kitchen may already feel too cramped. This is where vertical storage like shelves and racks come in. This will help to keep pots, pans, cooking utensils, oven mitts, and your trusty grilling apron up and out of the way, leaving room for you to cook and serve dinner.  

25. Save the cooler for the tailgates

Forget the days of slinging home melting bags of ice over your shoulder or panic texting your guests last minute to see if they can snag some on their way over. A mini fridge is the perfect, ice-free solution for keeping beverages refreshingly chill. 

26. Create a duo-potting shed

Make your outdoor kitchen ultra-functional by making it into a gardening shed as well as a cooking and dining area. It can be much easier to work from a bench and table than on your knees in the garden, and you can maximize the use of your space even when you aren't having a cookout. 

27. Make it shine

Outdoor kitchens can face a lot of wear and tear due to weather, so it's important to give them a shine up now and then. After thoroughly cleaning, give high gloss surfaces a quick wipe down with ammonia-free Windex to make them sparkle like new. 

28. Create a jungle bungalow

When you come home from an incredible vacation, you probably immediately want to bring a bit of the resort home with you. To create a super relaxed, gorgeous space, use rattan and bamboo furniture and plenty of neutrals.

29. Don't shy away from color

Neutrals are having a moment, but don't forget to have fun with your outdoor kitchen design. A brightly colored accent wall can add some playfulness to the space and play more dynamically with lighting. 

30. Create a mural

Even if you aren't a world-class muralist, you can get some incredible designs with the help of a projector. This will give your outdoor kitchen that sleek, refined hotel finish. 

31. Give a nod to the Southwest

The Southwest is characterized by the vivid colors and patterns in tapestries and pottery, a style created by the indigenous people of America. Modern native people still create these textiles and pottery, which can be a stunning addition to your outdoor living space.

32. Rack 'em up

Adding a cheeky wine rack under your countertops is a thoughtful but low-cost detail. Including finishes you'd find in an indoor kitchen makes your outdoor space feel more luxurious. Just don't forget the corkscrew!

33. Splurge on hardware

To give the outdoor kitchen a more regal, classic touch, look for black wrought iron pieces. They are incredibly durable against weather and debris but are still elegant. Swapping out builder-grade hinges with wrought iron will be a brilliant finish. 

34. Make it fit with your space

You don't need a sprawling backyard to have an outdoor kitchen. Even small alleys and hardscaped yards can be the perfect place for a cozy kitchen and countertop space. 

35. Stoves can double as works of art

Wood-burning stoves are, of course, supremely functional, but they can also show exemplary craftsmanship that makes them an ideal cornerstone of your outdoor kitchen and dining area. That makes them a valuable item to focus your budget on. 

36. Invest in a dining table

Once the wine has been poured and dinner is off the grill, you need somewhere to enjoy it. Whether you have a petite bistro table or an elegant table for eight, you want a gorgeous surface to gather around. Natural wood tables are a great organic addition to your outdoor backyard. 

37. Dress up the grill

In your outdoor kitchen design, be sure to decide on a color scheme. Small accents, like a red casserole dish to match your crimson grill, as seen here, make the design more cohesive and inviting. Best of all, you can just use what you have around the house instead of buying new décor items. 

38. Glass the place up

One of the things that give Mediterranean kitchens that irresistible je ne sais quoi charm is the use of radiant sea glass decor. Even if your palette leans more minimalist, adding a blue glass vase, potting plant, or dishware lends a timeless European beachy charm. 

39. Get creative with cabinetry

As your outdoor kitchen is, well, outdoors, you may not want to deal with the maintenance of glass-faced cabinets, which can get stained from rain and sprinklers and shattered in extreme weather. Instead, consider adding an iron grate to the cabinet face, which ties in nicely with deco and art nouveau styles. 

40. Black out the kitchen

Black interiors are dramatic and stunning, so why not bring that sleek edge outside, too? Black on black outdoor kitchens look great with plenty of natural sunlight and can be warmed up with bistro lights and candles. 

41. Or white it out!

White stucco or adobe walls are a rustic touch to your outdoor living space. Consider going for a white clay stove to give your kitchen set up some Old-World charm, and let the textures shine in a shade of white or ivory. 

42. Think small

The most important part of assembling an outdoor kitchen is being able to spend time outside. So don't stress about creating a GQ-worthy cooking space. Portable, rollable, and small system kitchens can still pack a ton of punch. 

43. Farmhouse chic outside

Can't get enough of the ultra-trendy black and white farmhouse style? Bring it to your outdoor aesthetic, too. With a few coats of paint, plenty of natural wood finishes, and some bistro lights, you can have an outdoor kitchen that will have Joanna Gaines drooling. 

44. Think toasty thoughts

Make the outdoor kitchen and living area glow at night with plenty of warm light bulbs. This will make guests feel like they're wrapped in a warm, inviting hug that will help keep the party going into the late, dark hours of the night. 

45. Make magic with macramé

Macramé is a type of knotted woven art with a big moment in the design world. Wall hangings, vase coverings, and doilies can be made with macramé techniques. They are an earthy, bohemian style that lends charm and texture to your outdoor kitchen area. 

46. No herringbones about it

If you've decided to use lumber as a partition in your exterior kitchen, consider breaking away from the standard plank styles and creating a memorable accent wall with a herringbone pattern. This adds visual interest and offers plenty of privacy for your outdoor living space. 

47. A pizza party every day

Not ready to invest in a full-blown outdoor kitchen? You don't need a fridge, stove, or sink to have a great outdoor cooking space. A pizza oven, a few potted plants, and some countertop space are more than enough for a great outdoor cooking area. 

48. Only add the bare necessities

Outdoor kitchens do not need to be loaded down with all the bells and whistles. As long as you have the essentials — a grill, salt and pepper, a plate, and a spatula, you have everything you need to get cooking and start enjoying more time outside. 

49. Go bold with lighting features

If you have a covered outdoor kitchen, consider having some fun with the light installations. A chandelier or weatherproof solar lanterns add a ton of value to the outdoor space and create a captivating atmosphere. 

50. Get creative with seating

No need to invest in an expensive and oversized set of patio furniture when you're designing your outdoor kitchen. Get creative with bench seating and cushions, and look for nooks in your yard to build additional seating areas. 

51. The gold standard

Find yourself with a love for all that glitters? Incorporate metallic finishes of gold, bronze, and copper into your outdoor kitchen. Depending on how you utilize it in the design, they can lend an industrial edge or old-school glamour. 

52. Make it a wet bar

Including a sink in your outdoor kitchen may seem unnecessary, but it can add a ton of convenience. Wash a few dishes, rinse silverware, and top off your water pitcher without having to trek back inside. 

53. Go for quartz

While you may be tempted to DIY every piece of your outdoor, consider opting for an excellent high-end countertop like quartz. Unlike granite or marble, quartz is non-porous, hard, and ultra-durable but has just as much style as its other stone counterparts. 

54. Don't block your view

If you have a gorgeous garden, forest, or city view, don't block it with solid partition walls. Instead, use slats with plenty of space in between — this will give you lots of privacy without obstructing the light and the view. 

55. But keep your area's climate in mind

Even those who live in areas with plenty of wind and sun can enjoy an outdoor kitchen with some thoughtful planning. Putting up walls and a roof even on one side of the kitchen can make the space more usable through inclement weather. 

56. Style in tile

Even if color isn't your thing, you can still make a splash with tile patterns. Many are now offered in easy-to-apply tile sheets, so you don't have to be a world-class mason to add them to your outdoor kitchen design.

57. Beauty in simplicity

Wood finishes, shiplap, concrete countertops, and a grill are all you need for a functional and fashionable outdoor kitchen. Add extra touches at the holidays, or keep it sweet and simple all year round. 

58. Just add wheels

You don't need to build up a ton of permanent counter space for your exterior kitchen — in fact, it might not be the most practical. Wheeling carts can make for great makeshift bar carts or help you bring your delicious BBQ to the dining table. 

59. Repurpose a bookshelf

Not trying to go through the hassle of including a stovetop in your outdoor kitchen? Then you can use a wide variety of other surfaces and storage solutions. Just make sure they are heatproof and sealed for weather protection to keep your investment looking great. 

60. Have fun with seating

Instead of the standard sectional and lounge chairs, have some fun when picking out seating for your outdoor dining area. Rocking benches or suspended egg chairs are classy but add fun and kinetic energy to your design.