How Much Space Do You Need for an Outdoor Kitchen?

An outdoor kitchen is a fantastic way to enhance your home, expand your living space, and invest in your property. But how much space do you need for an outdoor kitchen?

As you begin making plans for your outdoor kitchen, one of the first things you’ll want to focus on is size. How big do you want your kitchen to be? How much space do you need for a dining area, cooking prep, and food and equipment storage? What features are most important to you?

Determining the space you’ll need for your outdoor kitchen largely depends on the initial dimensions you’ll be working with and your desired results. In this post, we’ll help guide you through the most important considerations to make as you design your dream outdoor kitchen.

How Much Space for an Outdoor Kitchen?

Let’s take a look at the space needed for four standard outdoor kitchen layouts:

The Compact Outdoor Kitchen

You’ll want a minimum of 10 linear feet for this kitchen, which will allow for the bare minimum of appliances and prep space. Most likely, you’ll have room for a grill, sink, and prep space with little room for anything else.

The Essentials Only Outdoor Kitchen

Here, aim for up to 14 linear feet of space. With those extra few feet, you can add additional burners and more space for food prep and storage.

The Spacious Outdoor Kitchen

Add a few more feet (up to about 16-17 linear feet), and you might consider adding a full-sized fridge and freezer to your setup. You can’t go wrong with more counter space or even a pizza oven either.

The Luxury Outdoor Kitchen

Finally, if you’re able to spare up to 20 linear feet, you can make your space into a full outdoor kitchen with all the bells and whistles you desire. Have ample storage for appliances, utensils, food, and place settings; a pizza oven and large grill with extra burners; plenty of countertop space; a sink; and a fridge and freezer.

Key Considerations for Outdoor Kitchen Space 

Primary Use

Naturally, one of the first things you’ll want to consider when thinking about the optimal dimensions of your outdoor kitchen is: How will I be using this space?

To be sure, there are a plethora of ways to take advantage of an outdoor kitchen.

For instance, you might plan on entertaining a lot. If this is your goal, further consider how many guests you’ll be hosting on average. Do you often host large parties? Or, are you more in the habit of inviting one family or just a few people over at a time? Perhaps you plan on only making outdoor meals for you and your family. Or, maybe you’d just like a compact space where you can have a grill and keep some chilled drinks on hand.

Also, think about your general interest in the culinary arts. Do you love to cook and often make elaborate meals? If you’re definitely a foodie at heart, what are the types of foods you particularly love to make? You might want extra space for a pizza oven, an extra-large grill, side burners, or a food warming area.

Full or Partial Kitchen

Next, how complete of a kitchen are you looking to build?

Generally speaking, you can choose between either a full or partial outdoor kitchen. Full kitchens are more expensive but have everything you’ll need to make a meal, including a fridge and/or freezer, food and equipment storage, a sink and prep area, and a grill and cooktop.

Partial kitchens include only some of these elements. You might have just your grill, a prep area, and a sink outside, for example. Partial kitchens are great when your indoor kitchen is nearby. If your indoor kitchen is all the way on the other side of your house, however, it can be a hassle to go back and forth when you need certain foods from the fridge or different cooking equipment.

Dining and Entertaining Area Needs

Again, think back to how you will be using this space. If you’re going to entertain a lot, what type of entertaining do you want to do? For example, you might be more interested in hosting cocktail parties where comfortable seating areas are more important than dining table space.

Alternatively, consider varied setups, such as having a bar with stools near the kitchen, a dining area with a table and chairs, and a lounge area for reading or enjoying evening cocktails.

Adjacent Yard Space

Finally, when you consider how much space you have to start with, what are you willing to give up in your yard? While you might be able to barely fit a luxury-sized outdoor kitchen in your backyard, if you have young children or pets, you probably don’t want to cover all of your open grass area, so this may not be optimal.

Other considerations include whether or not you have a pool or hot tub. If so, you may need your kitchen area to be oriented in a specific direction so as to keep an eye on little swimmers while you cook. Some homeowners might also be interested in blending their pool with elements of their outdoor kitchen — installing a swim-up bar is the perfect example.

Central Florida’s Residential Outdoor Kitchen Experts

Orlando Outdoor Kitchens can help you design your dream outdoor kitchen, finding the perfect way to optimize your available space for the outdoor kitchen while maximizing convenience and beauty. No matter the size or breadth of your project, we’re always willing to go the extra mile for our customers.

To book an appointment with one of our outdoor kitchen experts today, give us a call at (407) 636-7135!

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