The Outdoor Kitchen
Disclosure ~ This post contains affiliate links.
Summer will soon be upon us and you know what that means: triple-digit heat. With a forehead dotted with sweat and a house that won’t cool down, does using the oven to make dinner sound like a good idea? The Energy Department tells homeowners that to fight the summer heat, they’ll need to refrain from using the oven or stove. Otherwise, the whole house is going to feel like a boiler room.
Though it seems like summer is everyone’s favorite season, keeping cool and feeling comfortable can be two hard-pressed things to do.
But not to worry; you won’t have to sacrifice a home-cooked meal. Instead of cooking indoors, take the food prep. outside. In the heat? You’re asking. Isn’t that what we’re trying to avoid? Yes, we are, but just wait.
This article is going to show you the four must-have items your outdoor kitchen needs for a great thoroughfare of food and entertainment all summer long. You won’t want to spend one minute indoors after you read this!
Before outfitting your backyard patio with a grill, you’ll need to measure the space and think about what you want out of the grill. Kitchen Guy’d tells grillers to think about whether they prefer direct or indirect grilling with their guide: Direct vs Indirect Grilling: A Complete Lowdown
-How often will the grill be used?
-How will the grill be stored when not in use?
-Do you want a propane, charcoal or natural gas grill?
-Will the grill be used to prepare food for entertaining?
-What color should the grill be?
-Does the cost of the grill fit in my budget?
-Will the grill’s maintenance costs fit in my budget?
Once you’re able to answer these questions, you’re ready to buy a grill!
The Outdoor Dining Furniture
Once the meat and veggies have been grilled and plated, where is everyone going to sit to enjoy their meal? Will everyone sit on the grass picnic-style, or will they awkwardly stand by the grill balancing plate and drink in hand?
To comfortably accommodate guests, consider investing in a sturdy wood or metal-made dining set. The size and shape of the dining set largely depends on how many guests you intend to entertain. A round table accommodates a handful of guests nicely, while a long rectangular table lets you entertain the masses. The Huffington Post recommends that if you are planning to eat and entertain outside, go for the full outdoor dining set.
One of my favorite places to shop is Kohl’s because they have great prices and a great selection of outdoor furniture.
The Outdoor Ceiling Fan
Naturally, it’s going to be warm outside, even uncomfortably so. But you know this already—it’s why you’re cooking outside in the first place: to avoid the heat INSIDE! To keep cool in the heat and under the pressure of hosting, install an outdoor ceiling fan. The fan will circulate the air under the covered deck or patio and will keep you and your guests from suffocating in the summer heat.
Your friends will want something to do while you’re getting busy with the grill. To avoid awkward silences and to keep people out of your way while you’re preparing the meal, get some fun backyard games to play, including Corn Hole and Bocce Ball. Your friends won’t notice their growling stomachs because they’ll be too focused on the game.
If it’s too hot to be in direct sunlight, outfit the outdoor kitchen space with an entertainment system, including a television and karaoke machine; it’ll be so much fun! You can find great goodies like that at Target too.
What is most important is that your backyard kitchen be functional and inviting. It doesn’t have to have all of the latest gadgets. It doesn’t have to look like it came out of a magazine. It just has to do its job: help you stay cool, cook and entertain.