Ultimate Checklist for Designing Your Dream Custom Outdoor Kitchen

outdoor kitchens remodel

Exploring Custom Outdoor Kitchens: If you’re considering enhancing your outdoor living space, a custom outdoor kitchen might be exactly what you need. Custom outdoor kitchens can transform your backyard into an inviting entertainment hub for family and friends while adding value to your home. With a range of design, layout, and appliance options, there’s a solution that can be tailored specifically to match your lifestyle and preferences.

When thinking about custom outdoor kitchens, key points include:

  • Design & Layout: Tailor the space to fit your style and cooking needs.
  • Materials & Appliances: Choose from high-quality, weather-resistant options.
  • Functionality & Versatility: Ensure your outdoor kitchen meets your cooking and entertaining requirements.
  • Professional Installation: Consider hiring experts for a hassle-free build.

Whether you’re dreaming of hosting vibrant get-togethers or enjoying tranquil dinners under the stars, a custom outdoor kitchen can make it a reality. This space is not just about adding a grill; it’s about creating a fully functional outdoor dining area that suits your every need. Let’s guide you through the essential steps and decisions to design your dream outdoor kitchen.

Determining Your Needs and Budget

When you’re dreaming about custom outdoor kitchens, it’s easy to get carried away with all the cool features and designs you can include. But before diving into the fun stuff, it’s crucial to nail down two things: what you need and how much you can spend.

Understanding Costs

The cost of building a custom outdoor kitchen can vary widely. Factors like size, materials, appliances, and whether you’re doing it yourself or hiring professionals play a big part. On average, you might spend anywhere from $1,000 to $50,000, with most people paying around $15,717. Local materials and labor costs can also affect your budget.

Return on Investment (ROI)

Investing in a custom outdoor kitchen isn’t just about spending money; it’s about adding value to your life and your home. If you live in a climate that supports year-round outdoor living, this space can become a central hub for family and friends.

A well-designed and maintained outdoor kitchen can increase your home’s value by 60% to 100% of what you spent on building it. This ROI isn’t just in monetary terms but also in the quality of life and enjoyment you get from the space.

Setting Your Budget

  1. Assess Your Needs: Start by listing what you want in your outdoor kitchen. This could include a grill, pizza oven, refrigerator, sink, and dining area. Think about how you plan to use the space: for big parties or intimate family dinners?

  2. Prioritize: Once you have your wish list, prioritize the features based on your cooking style and entertaining needs. Not everything is a must-have right away; you can always add more features later.

  3. Get Quotes: If you’re considering professional help, get quotes from several contractors. They can offer valuable insights and help you understand the costs related to your specific project.

  4. Plan for Extras: Always include a buffer in your budget for unexpected costs. Whether it’s for additional electrical work, landscaping, or just a change in materials, having a financial cushion is wise.

DIY vs. Professional Installation

Deciding whether to DIY or hire professionals depends on your skills, time, and budget. DIY can save you money but remember, large projects often require permits and expertise in plumbing, electrical, and gas lines.

Professional installation might cost more upfront but can save you time and ensure the job is done right, adhering to all safety and building codes. Plus, professionals can often get materials at a lower cost and have the tools and knowledge to handle unexpected issues.

In the end, creating your dream outdoor kitchen is about balancing what you want with what you can realistically afford. Don’t forget to consider the long-term enjoyment and value it will bring to your home and family. With careful planning and budgeting, you can create a space that meets your needs, fits your lifestyle, and provides years of enjoyment.

Next, we’ll explore how to design your custom outdoor kitchen, focusing on layout options, material selection, appliance choices, functionality, and style matching.

Designing Your Custom Outdoor Kitchen

Designing a custom outdoor kitchen is like painting on a blank canvas. Your backyard will transform into a space where delicious meals are made, and lasting memories are created. Let’s dive into the essentials: layout options, material selection, appliance choices, functionality, and style matching.

Layout Options

Your outdoor kitchen’s layout is pivotal. It dictates the flow of your space and how comfortably you can cook and entertain. Common layouts include:

  • L-Shaped: Ideal for corner spaces, providing a natural work triangle and room for guests.
  • Linear: Perfect for smaller areas, placing everything along a single line.
  • U-Shaped: Offers the most room for cooking, prepping, and socializing, making it suitable for avid entertainers.
  • Galley: With appliances and counters facing each other, this layout is efficient but requires more space.

Consider your backyard’s size and how you plan to use the kitchen when choosing a layout.

Material Selection

Choosing the right materials ensures your outdoor kitchen withstands the elements and ages gracefully. Stainless steel is popular for appliances due to its durability and ease of cleaning. For countertops, consider granite or concrete for their beauty and resilience. When selecting cabinetry, opt for marine-grade polymer or teak wood for their water-resistant properties.

Appliance Choices

The heart of your outdoor kitchen lies in its appliances. Key considerations include:

  • Grills: Gas grills offer convenience, while charcoal grills provide that smoky flavor. Consider a hybrid for versatility.
  • Pizza Ovens: A must-have for pizza lovers, adding a unique touch to your menu.
  • Refrigeration: Outdoor-rated refrigerators and wine coolers keep your ingredients and drinks chilled.
  • Sinks and Storage: Essential for prep and cleanup, ensuring everything you need is at arm’s reach.

Select appliances based on your cooking style and the types of gatherings you host.


Your outdoor kitchen should not only look good but also function seamlessly. This means considering the work triangle between your grill, sink, and refrigerator. Ensure ample counter space for meal prep and include storage for cooking utensils and dinnerware. Lighting is another critical aspect, with task lighting over work areas and ambient lighting to set the mood.

Style Matching

Finally, your outdoor kitchen should reflect the style of your home, creating a seamless transition between indoors and out. Whether your home is modern, traditional, or rustic, carry those design elements into your outdoor space. This includes matching materials, colors, and architectural details.

Incorporating these elements thoughtfully will ensure your custom outdoor kitchen is not only a functional space for cooking and entertaining but also a beautiful extension of your home that enhances your outdoor living experience.

Next, we’ll look into selecting appliances and features that add versatility and convenience to your outdoor kitchen.

Selecting Appliances and Features for Versatility and Convenience

When it comes to creating your dream custom outdoor kitchen, selecting the right appliances and features is crucial. These elements not only enhance your cooking experience but also add versatility and convenience to your outdoor space. Let’s dive into some key components you should consider.

Gas Grills

Gas grills are a must-have for any outdoor kitchen. They’re easy to use and provide consistent heat for a variety of cooking needs. Whether you’re grilling burgers or veggies, a gas grill offers the convenience of quick start-up and easy cleanup.

Charcoal Trays and Built-in Smokers

For those who love the taste of smoky-flavored food, charcoal trays and built-in smokers are perfect. They give you the flexibility to switch between gas and charcoal grilling or to add that smoky flavor to meats and vegetables.

Side Burners

Side burners are great for preparing side dishes or sauces without having to go back into the indoor kitchen. They integrate seamlessly into your outdoor kitchen layout, saving you time and keeping the cooking flow going.

Pizza Ovens

Imagine baking your own wood-fired pizza right in your backyard. Pizza ovens are not just for pizza; they can bake bread, roast meats, and more. They’re a fantastic feature that adds a special touch to your outdoor cooking repertoire.


Having a refrigerator in your outdoor kitchen means you can keep ingredients fresh and drinks cold without having to run inside. It’s all about convenience and keeping the party outside.

Storage Solutions

Storage solutions are key to a tidy and functional outdoor kitchen. Cabinets and drawers designed for outdoor use can store your cooking utensils, pots, and pans, keeping them handy but out of sight.


Proper lighting is essential for cooking after dark and creating the right ambiance. Consider installing task lighting over the grill and prep areas, and ambient lighting around seating areas.

Bluetooth Speakers and Integrated Outlets

For entertainment, Bluetooth speakers can be integrated into your outdoor kitchen design, allowing you to enjoy music as you cook or dine. Integrated outlets ensure you can charge devices or plug in any additional cooking tools easily.

Warming Racks and Sinks

Warming racks keep food warm while you finish grilling, ensuring everything is ready to serve at the same time. A sink adds convenience for washing hands, utensils, or food items, making your outdoor kitchen as functional as the one indoors.

Choosing the right appliances and features for your custom outdoor kitchen can transform your backyard into a versatile and convenient outdoor living space. It’s all about selecting elements that match your cooking style, make your life easier, and create a welcoming atmosphere for entertaining.

We’ll explore building and installation considerations to ensure your outdoor kitchen is not only beautiful but also durable and safe.

Maximizing Your Space and Enhancing Aesthetics

Maximizing your space and enhancing the aesthetics of your custom outdoor kitchen are crucial steps to creating an area that’s both functional and visually appealing. Let’s dive into how you can achieve a seamless extension of your home, utilize flexible layouts, customize to your heart’s desire, and integrate your kitchen with the landscape.

Seamless Extension of Your Home

Your outdoor kitchen should feel like a natural extension of your indoor living space. This means matching the style and look of your home to create a cohesive appearance. Consider using similar materials, colors, and architectural details. For example, if your home features brick exterior walls, incorporating brick elements into your outdoor kitchen can tie the two spaces together beautifully.

Flexible Layouts

The beauty of custom outdoor kitchens is in the flexibility of their design. Whether you have a spacious backyard or a cozy patio, there’s a layout that will fit your space perfectly. An L-shaped kitchen might maximize corner space, while a straight or galley layout could be ideal for narrower areas. Think about how you move when you cook and entertain, and design your layout to facilitate this flow.


The sky’s the limit when it comes to customization. From choosing materials that withstand the weather and look stunning, to selecting appliances that cater to your culinary preferences, every detail can be tailored to fit your lifestyle. Love to host pizza parties? Include a wood-fired pizza oven. Are you a grill master? Opt for a high-quality built-in grill. Customization also extends to lighting, countertops, and even the type of seating you incorporate, ensuring every element is exactly how you envision it.

Landscape Integration

Integrating your outdoor kitchen with the surrounding landscape not only enhances its beauty but also makes the space more inviting. Consider the views from your kitchen and position it to take advantage of the best ones. Incorporate greenery and flowers to add color and life to the area. If you have a garden, think about planting herbs and vegetables that you can use in your outdoor cooking. Integrating your kitchen with the landscape creates a serene and inviting outdoor living space that complements the natural beauty of your backyard.

By focusing on these key areas, you can maximize the potential of your outdoor kitchen space, making it a beautiful, functional, and seamless extension of your home. Custom outdoor kitchens are more than just a place to cook—they’re a place to gather, entertain, and create memories with family and friends. As we consider the building and installation considerations next, the foundation of a great outdoor kitchen lies in thoughtful design and attention to detail.

Building and Installation Considerations

When it comes to bringing your dream custom outdoor kitchen to life, the path you choose for building and installation is pivotal. Here, we’ll dive into the key considerations to ensure your outdoor kitchen is not only stunning but stands the test of time.

DIY vs. Professional Installation

The decision between DIY and professional installation hinges on a few critical factors—your skill level, the complexity of your design, and your budget.

  • DIY can be a cost-saving route if you have experience in construction, plumbing, and electrical work. It offers the satisfaction of building something with your own hands. However, it requires a significant time investment and a steep learning curve for beginners.
  • Professional Installation is recommended for those seeking precision, expertise, and peace of mind. Professionals like OasisStone™ installers bring experience, efficiency, and a warranty on their workmanship. This route ensures your outdoor kitchen is built to code and finished to a high standard.

OasisStone™ Installers

Opting for OasisStone™ installers means choosing a network of highly trained professionals specialized in outdoor kitchen installations. They ensure:
– High-quality craftsmanship
– Use of premium materials
– Adherence to local building codes
– A seamless and hassle-free installation process

Concrete Footers and Masonry Elements

A solid foundation is crucial for any outdoor kitchen, especially if you’re incorporating heavy elements like stone or brick. Concrete footers provide stability and support, preventing settlement and structural issues down the line. Masonry elements, chosen for their durability and aesthetic appeal, require skilled installation to ensure longevity and resistance to weather elements.

Weather Resistance

Outdoor kitchens must withstand the elements—rain, snow, sun, and wind. Selecting materials that are weather-resistant is non-negotiable. Stainless steel appliances resist rust and corrosion, while high-grade stone and brick offer durability. Regular maintenance, like sealing stone surfaces and covering appliances, extends their lifespan and keeps your kitchen looking its best.

Maintenance Tips

To enjoy your outdoor kitchen for years to come, regular maintenance is key. Here are a few tips:
Cover appliances and furniture when not in use to protect them from the elements.
Seal stone surfaces annually to prevent staining and water damage.
Clean stainless steel components with a dedicated cleaner to maintain their shine and prevent corrosion.
Inspect and repair grout and mortar joints to keep masonry elements intact.
Winterize your outdoor kitchen by draining water lines and storing sensitive electronics and accessories indoors.

By considering these building and installation aspects, you’re setting the stage for a custom outdoor kitchen that’s as durable as it is beautiful. Whether you decide to embark on a DIY project or enlist the expertise of professionals like OasisStone™ installers, the key is thorough planning and a focus on quality. A well-built outdoor kitchen not only enhances your living space but also adds value to your home.

Let’s address some frequently asked questions about custom outdoor kitchens, from costs and investment value to budget-friendly design tips.

Frequently Asked Questions about Custom Outdoor Kitchens

How much does a custom outdoor kitchen cost?

The cost of a custom outdoor kitchen can vary widely. It can range from as low as $1,000 for a very basic setup to upwards of $50,000 for a high-end, fully equipped kitchen. The average spends about $15,717. Factors that influence the cost include the size and layout, the materials used, the appliances you select, and whether you go for a DIY project or professional installation. Local labor and material costs also play a significant role.

Is a custom outdoor kitchen a good investment for my home?

Absolutely. Custom outdoor kitchens can significantly enhance your outdoor living experience, making your home a more enjoyable and functional space for family and guests. Moreover, they can increase your home’s value. According to Angi, a well-maintained outdoor kitchen can increase your home’s value by 60% to 100% of the money you spent building it, especially if you live in a climate that supports year-round outdoor living. This makes it not just a lifestyle upgrade but also a smart financial investment.

How can I design an outdoor kitchen on a budget?

Designing an outdoor kitchen on a budget requires creativity and smart planning. Here are a few tips:

  • DIY where possible: Taking on some of the work yourself can save on labor costs. Even if you’re not handy, you might be able to handle some of the simpler tasks.
  • Choose materials wisely: Opt for cost-effective materials. For example, concrete blocks for the structure and tile for countertops can offer durability at a lower cost than some other materials.
  • Simplify your design: A smaller, simpler kitchen with fewer appliances will cost less. Focus on what you really need. For example, a high-quality grill and some prep space might be all you need to start.
  • Shop around: Look for deals on appliances and materials. End-of-season sales can be a great opportunity to find high-quality items at a lower price.
  • Phase your project: Consider building your outdoor kitchen in stages. Start with the essentials, and add on as your budget allows.

The goal is to create a functional, enjoyable space that meets your needs. With careful planning and a bit of creativity, you can design a beautiful outdoor kitchen that fits your budget.

As we conclude our exploration of custom outdoor kitchens, whether you’re looking for a simple grill station or a fully equipped culinary oasis, Berriz Design Build can help bring your vision to life. With thoughtful design and quality craftsmanship, your new outdoor kitchen will become your favorite spot for gathering, cooking, and making memories for years to come.


At Berriz Design Build, we understand that an outdoor kitchen is more than just a place to cook outside. It’s an extension of your home, a space where memories are made, and a reflection of your lifestyle and tastes. That’s why we’re dedicated to helping you create a custom outdoor kitchen that not only meets your practical needs but also enhances the beauty and value of your home.

Our team of experts will work closely with you to design a kitchen that fits seamlessly into your outdoor living space, whether you’re dreaming of a cozy spot for family barbecues or a fully equipped culinary oasis for entertaining friends. From selecting the perfect materials and appliances to integrating your kitchen with the surrounding landscape, we’ll ensure every detail is tailored to your preferences.

We believe that your outdoor kitchen should be built to last, using high-quality materials and construction techniques that withstand the elements and the test of time. Our commitment to excellence means you can enjoy your outdoor kitchen with peace of mind, knowing it’s a wise investment in your home’s value and your family’s quality of life.

To get started on your dream outdoor kitchen, visit our services page and schedule a consultation with us. Let’s turn your backyard into a beautiful, functional space where you can cook, entertain, and relax in style.

Thank you for considering Berriz Design Build for your outdoor kitchen project. We look forward to helping you create a space that you’ll love for years to come.

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