Extending Your Living Space with Outdoor Kitchen Landscape Design

October 5, 2010 Posted by Home and Fashion
Outdoor kitchen landscape design is an increasingly popular trend in garden planning, not just in the year round warmth of southern California, but in cooler climates as well.


Modern outdoor design takes the elegant style of your interior living space and continues it into the yard, creating the same functional living space on the outside. Because the kitchen is an integral part of entertaining at home, many people prefer an outdoor kitchen or sometimes referred to in the cooler climates as a 'Summer Kitchen' for convenient cooking and dining in the beautiful outdoors.

Planning Your Outdoor Kitchen

Designing an outdoor kitchen landscape design requires careful planning. Today’s kitchens are much more elaborate than the traditional outdoor grill near a picnic table and there are many things to consider to ensure a living area that is both functional and attractive.
Below is a colored rendering of an outdoor kitchen elevation that one of our landscape designers created for a client in Orange County, California. Heavy wooden beams with detailed corbels are perched on rustic stone columns providing shade over head for this Tuscan styled outdoor kitchen.


Outdoor Kitchen Appliances

Outdoor kitchen landscape design can be as simple, or as grand, as the homeowner desires. Many design plans for these functional outdoor living spaces recreate the modern conveniences of the indoors with outdoor plumbing, elegant counter tops, cabinets for storage, and refrigeration.

The size and number of your outdoor appliances and accessories will depend upon your budget, as well as the space available for your kitchen and the number of people it will typically be used for.
An outdoor grill or barbecue is the most basic component of your design. There are a variety of styles and types of appliances designed for the outdoors including the Viking outdoor cooking equipment shown in this photo.

Choosing Your Outdoor Grill

There are a wide variety of barbecue grills available. The right one for your outdoor kitchen will depend on the number of people you typically entertain in your home. A large cooking surface or double rack design will allow you to prepare bigger meals, but a compact model will be sufficient for more intimate gatherings.


Today’s outdoor grills feature a number of accessories and add-ons as well. Side burners are the best way to prepare a full meal without the inconvenience of being trapped indoors. Choose from simple models with one or two burners or large barbecue grills with full sized cooking surfaces for the feeling of an indoor kitchen. Cabinets and storage areas are also popular options. Look into our online store where you will find the best deals on bbq grills, bbq islands, built-in grills, side burners, bar fridges, kegerators, rock speakers, low-voltage lighting, pre-fab fountains, pond kits, gazebos, outdoor televisions, fireplace inserts, and much more. We have searched the web to save you this tedious search and to bring the very best quality and prices right to your door.

Outdoor Barbecue Islands

Luxurious outdoor kitchen landscape designs often feature a barbecue island to provide a functional, yet attractive, workspace for meal preparation as well as room for storage. Outdoor kitchen islands can be custom made from fine wood, polymer, or brick or can be purchased in prefabricated sections for convenient installation. 

Custom outdoor barbecue islands are:
  • Easily suited to the appearance of your home with matching brick or complementary wood.
  • Built on site for permanence.
  • Designed according to your specifications so your outdoor kitchen landscape design meets all your needs.

Prefabricated outdoor kitchen islands offer:
  • A simple, piece together installation.
  • A more affordable price.
  • A variety of styles, materials, and colors to blend with your overall design.
  • Several different options to personalize your outdoor kitchen.


Other Outdoor Appliances and Accessories

Your barbecue island can be designed to contain your grill as well as several other appliances and accessories that make outdoor entertaining more convenient and enjoyable. Refrigerators are extremely common elements of outdoor kitchen landscape designs. Sinks, beer taps, wine coolers, pizza ovens, warming trays, cabinets and storage, and even dishwashers can also be integrated into your plans. A custom outdoor kitchen design can provide unlimited possibilities for cooking outdoors.

The Best Materials for Your Outdoor Kitchen

Because your outdoor kitchen will be open to the elements throughout the year, it is important to select materials designed for outdoor use. Polymer is a strong, weather-resistant material preferred by many landscape architects because of its ability to not peel or crack with changing climates. Brick is another long lasting material for outdoor use that has a luxurious appearance in your landscape design.


Counter tops and surfaces are typically finished with natural stone for a sophisticated look similar to your indoor kitchen design.
Granite, marble, and slate counter tops are common in high-end outdoor kitchen designs and ceramic tile is also an option hat can be found in several colors.
The final touches to any outdoor kitchen landscape design, regardless of how simple or elaborate, are outdoor accessories that enhance the overall style of your home. Dining furniture, decorative accents like sculptures, throw rugs, or potted plants, and the right outdoor lighting design can help unify your outdoor kitchen with the rest of your outdoor design as well as with the interior of your home.

Creating a unified look throughout your property is extremely important for a professionally designed appearance. Our network of landscape professionals specialize in upscale designs, including outdoor kitchen landscape designs, and provides complementary on-site consultations to property owners throughout the world.
To get started click here to fill out our simple Request Form. When you contact us for your complimentary consultation, be sure to check out our 7 Step Guide. This guide will arm you with all the information you need right when you need it the very most, regardless of the stage or scope of your project. We've included tips based on all our experiences with learned professionals and will serve as an invaluable source of information to you, even for those who may have already worked with an architect in the past.

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