If you’re deciding between a simple stand-alone grill or a full outdoor kitchen that will rival your interior space, here are the top things to consider.

1. Frequency of use

Fully equipped outdoor kitchens are a significant investment and can add value to your lifestyle if that is you use it. It’s not uncommon to see outdoor kitchens gathering dust only to be used a couple of times a year. When choosing between a stand-alone grill or a full outdoor kitchen, it’s important to assess how often you cook outdoors. Is it just for special events like 4th of July weekend or do you find yourself using the grill several nights a week?

2. Size of outdoor space

The size of your outdoor space will greatly determine the limitations of your kitchen. For those with a large garden, you’ll have greater flexibility to design a larger outdoor kitchen with all the mod-cons. With more moderately sized gardens, you’ll need to consider how much space you’re willing to sacrifice.

3. The location

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Built-in barbecue by Acre Studios featuring Andorra Linear Walling

The benefit of a stand-alone grill is that you can easily roll it out where you want and when you want it. This gives you the flexibility to locate the grill nearby your interior for easy access or close to your outdoor entertaining area. If you’re considering a substantial built-in kitchen, determining the location is important. Not only will you want it to be positioned in a convenient spot, you’ll also need to factor in access to services such as gas or running water.

4. The types of appliances

A proper outdoor kitchen will feature a grill, sink and most likely a fridge. Other popular appliances include a pizza oven, smokers, rotisseries. Determining which appliances you’re more likely to use will help inform the size and extent of your outdoor kitchen.

Take a look at our guide to buying the perfect barbecue

5. Your budget

A full outdoor kitchen can cost as much, if not more than an interior kitchen renovation. There’s the cost of the built structure, materials, finishes, appliances and service connections that budget for. If that’s beyond your means, a simpler kitchen such as a stone bench with built-in barbecue and sink may be more feasible. Locating it close to your interior kitchen to share the plumping may also reduce the costs.

For more outdoor kitchen inspiration, click here.

Feature image: BGD Architects outdoor kitchen paved in Ravello limestone.