Outdoor Kitchen Appliances: From Non-negotiables to the Optionals

by Chris Commins

An outdoor kitchen is an amazing addition to any property. It makes your home more energy efficient, reduces heat and odors inside, provides a place for gatherings and parties, and increases the value of your home.

There are hundreds of ways to go about planning, organizing, and building your outdoor kitchen, no matter if it’s big or small. We’ve been building modular outdoor kitchens in Texas for decades and we know what a challenge it is.

You need to pay extra attention to what you’re installing in your kitchen because they can make or break the whole cooking experience. Let’s go over the main outdoor kitchen appliances and some of the misconceptions around them.

Grills for Outdoor Kitchens

A grill is obviously the centerpiece of any outdoor kitchen. 

Everything else you have in your outdoor kitchen is going to either help you grill, help you prep for grilling, or help you clean up after grilling, so keep that in mind.

First, make sure the grill is easily accessible in your outdoors setup. No matter how much you like to be in control, there will be some foot traffic to and around your grill. Some homeowners go for BBQ islands in their outdoor kitchens, which makes their grill easy to get to and from.

Whatever you decide design-wise, keep in mind that shaky space predictions are one of the most common outdoor DIY grill station mistakes.

You can choose from gas, charcoal, or hybrid models, depending on your preference and budget. 

Most of our customers are installing built-in gas grills after our consulting. 

Built-in propane gas grills are convenient, durable, and easy to clean. 

Many of the models for outdoor kitchens have advanced features like rotisseries, infrared cooking panels, side burners, warming racks, and LED lights that help cook at night.

Fridges for Outdoor Kitchens

A fridge is a must-have for keeping your food and drinks cold and fresh. Moreover, everything you prep for grilling needs to be at hand so everything on your grill gets enough undiluted attention.

A proper outdoor kitchen fridge is specially designed to withstand weather and temperature fluctuations. 

You can opt for a standalone fridge or embedded built-in drawer unit that fits under your counter or grill like double drawers by True or DCS.

We at BBQ Outfitters have professional outdoor refrigeration appliances for any purpose - so get in touch if you’re wondering what gear to put in your kitchen.

Outdoor Kitchen Sinks

A sink is another non-negotiable appliance for your outdoor kitchen. 

It helps you wash your hands, dishes, utensils, and ingredients without having to go inside. This helps keep your processes hygienic and your food safe for all your guests.

With a proper-sized, convenient sink, your outdoor kitchen will be a lot easier to clean up after cooking and eating. 

You can choose from different shapes and models, as long as your outdoor kitchen sink is durable and weatherproof like the Alfresco or Twin Eagles sinks we sell and install - you will find a lot of help in them.

Outdoor Kitchen Ovens

An oven is a versatile appliance that can expand your outdoor cooking options. 

You can bake, roast, broil, and warm up your food with an oven. 

Some ovens are also designed to make pizzas, breads, cakes, and other baked goods. You can find gas or electric ovens that are suitable for outdoor use

Some grill models can take on functions of ovens, for instance, you can use ceramic grills like the Big Green Egg for baking a lot of dishes, even bread. If you would like to bake SOME foods and grill most of them, then consider getting a ceramic grill.

Beverage Centers for Your Outdoor Kitchen

A beverage center is a specialized appliance that can store and dispense your favorite drinks. 

You can have a beer tap, a wine cooler, a soda fountain, or a coffee maker in your outdoor kitchen. 

We sell great beverage centers, and depending on your kitchen design a glass-door beverage center or a stainless steel door may work better than the other.

Ice Makers

Having an ice maker is more a matter of taste than anything else, but keep in mind that ice is not just used in drinks. You may need a large amount of ice for blanching veggies for some recipes, and it always feels good to create your ice on your own property.

We offer a set of high-performance professional ice makers, so take a look and send any questions or concerns our way.

An ice maker can also be used to store ice cream, popsicles, and other frozen treats - you don’t want to be storing those with your frozen meats.

Smokers for Your Outdoor BBQ

A smoker is a great addition to any outdoor kitchen that works more than several times a year. You can smoke meats, cheeses, nuts, vegetables, and more with a smoker. 

A smoker uses wood chips, pellets, or charcoal to create smoke that infuses your food with a rich taste. 

At BBQ Outfitters you can find electric smokers that are easy to use and control.

Hot Dog Rollers?

A hot dog roller may look fun and nostalgic, but it may also be impractical and short-lived.

A hot dog roller can only cook hot dogs, which limits your menu options. It also takes up a lot of space and energy, and may not cook your hot dogs evenly or thoroughly.

Most of the people who installed hot dog rollers in their outdoor kitchens we know have reported barely using them.

Be Strategic with Appliance Selection

When selecting outdoor kitchen appliance brands and models, think strategically. You need to keep your kitchen scalable and be able to easily add and remove modules and sections of it.

We can help you design and equip an outside kitchen perfectly tailored to your needs, so contact us today and we’ll be happy to share our expertise!