Best Practices when planning an Outdoor Kitchen
When considering furnishing outdoor cooking areas such as patios or gardens, you can get inspiration online or from industry professionals.
These ideas have been addressed in our blog to make the most of the outdoor kitchen and are created for those who already have a designated outdoor cooking area.
For those who are thinking of adding an outdoor kitchen, this blog focuses on how to design an outdoor cooking area and chose the right equipment, giving you a general overview of the many aspects that come into play when setting up an outdoor cooking area customized to your needs.
There are several different options to consider in order to maximize your outdoor space by evaluating specific points before you begin.
The elements to consider for cooking al fresco are your budget, the amount of outdoor space you have and the type of equipment you need.
Included in this discussion are ways that ALFA Ovens can meet your individualized needs and preferences. Finally, we will give you a quick recap to help you make the best choice to create your outdoor kitchen.
How to install an outdoor kitchen
To create an outdoor cooking space, we can think of a myriad of combinations that necessarily allow for three key parameters.
- The choice of the type of environment.
- The choice of cooking equipment.
- The available space and budget.
Let us see them in detail.
The choice of the type of environment
When planning your outdoor kitchen, most people already have in mind the desired style and the furniture that will decorate it. Many food lovers invest in the services of outdoor kitchen design experts and contractors to help them in their choice.
In this regard, discover here nine great reasons to choose an Alfa outdoor wood-fired oven.
Among the different kinds of outdoor kitchen, we can mention three main categories:
- The modular outdoor kitchen.
- The uncovered outdoor kitchen.
- The sheltered outdoor kitchen.
Let’s examine the differences.
1 . The modular outdoor kitchen
The first solution that we take into consideration is certainly the most versatile and the least demanding. The modular outdoor kitchen is composed by many units which can be integrated and rearranged according to your needs.
So, you can use mobile cooking equipment in conjunction with fixtures (for example by placing a steel pizza oven or a barbecue alongside a sink or a stone worktop). It is definitely the best answer when space is at a premium so you can choose your kitchen layout only when you use it. Mobile ovens are also a good choice for those who don’t have space to dedicate to outdoor cooking and use spaces that are multi-purpose like carports and decks.
2. The uncovered outdoor kitchen
The uncovered outdoor kitchen provides for the installation of cooking appliances with no shelter.
It’s very convenient when it is located close to an indoor kitchen with access to refrigeration, water, and prep areas. This saves you the hassle of going back and forth and to be in proximity to items needed when cooking and entertaining. An uncovered kitchen is also more cost effective.
3 . The sheltered outdoor kitchen
The last option we focus on is the most complete one, namely the sheltered outdoor kitchen. An open-air kitchen should be covered and a pergola or a gazebo are just the ticket to protect both the cooking and dining area from bad weather.
You can choose permanent or movable structures such as folding walls to have a more adaptable kitchen. This solution is the more expensive and space-consuming but can significantly increase the value of your house.
The choice of cooking equipment
The second determinant to consider when installing an outdoor kitchen is the choice of cooking equipment and above all its fuel supply.
In our blogs, we have repeatedly mentioned the main differences between wood and gas
There are different aspects to choosing the oven that is right for you:
- The wood-fired oven is more difficult to use but it is also the one that imparts the food with unique, smoky flavor. Wood fired ovens are designed for outdoor use and all ventilation and clearance recommendations should be followed for safety. Many people are intimidated by the learning curve of cooking with fire but this traditional method of cooking is unparalleled for flavor.
- The gas-fired oven is surprisingly easy to use and install as you can connect it to the gas mains or to the cylinder. Many people are already familiar with gas grills and the concept of a gas oven is the same. They allow for precision and temperature control and all ALFA gas models are designed with the same premium materials as our wood models and reach temperatures of 1,000 degrees.
A special mention goes to the hybrid oven, that is a gas-fired appliance that runs on firewood as well. It has the structure of an Alfa steel gas-fired oven equipped with the hybrid kit, a special lid that protects the burner and allows you to operate it as it were a genuine wood-fired model.
The choice of the fuel type is not insignificant as it partly determines what you cook and how you do it.
Budget and available space
The third factor we have to deal with to create an outdoor kitchen is the space available and how much money we have to invest in it. Usually, a larger space needs more appliances and more construction work.
The use of mobile equipment allows to maximise the space without taking it up in a permanent way. The overall expense depends on the type of equipment, the furniture and the labour cost for assembling them knowing that anyway, there is no fixed rule on it.
In fact, you can set up a large fully equipped outdoor kitchen without paying through the nose for it as you can put up a small cooking area outfitted with very expensive state-of-the-art commercial equipment.
Here are five ideas to create an outdoor kitchen based on the kind of environment (modular, covered or uncovered kitchen), the type of fuel (wood, gas or electricity) and the available space and budget in order to give you inspiration to make cooking alfresco all the more delightful.
Five outdoor kitchen ideas
Here are 5 options to suit all your needs.
- Compact spaces
- Small, built-in kitchen near to home
- Modular, wood-fired outdoor kitchen
- Kitchens designed for Cooking with Fire
- Fully equipped, sheltered kitchen
Let us look at them.
1. Compact spaces
City dwellers with compact spaces like balconies and patios can still enjoy a quality outdoor cooking environment and adhere to building and HOA regulations regarding allowable outdoor cooking equipment.
A compact, portable, gas-fired oven like the Alfa One can hit a temperature of 1000 degrees in 30 minutes and are designed with the same premium materials and craftmanship as ALFA’s wood models. Easy to install and move, it can be easily connected to the gas line or cylinder.
2. Small, built-in kitchen near to home
If you want to set up a dedicated kitchen in a small space, consider using a wall near your indoor kitchen. Proximity to the indoor kitchen allows for easy access to prep areas and resources like water and refrigeration; as well as, potential for accessing gas hook up for gas models like Stone Oven, Brio, and One.
3. Modular, wood-fired outdoor kitchen
If what you are looking for is a cooking area with a wood-burning oven as a backup for the gas-fired or electric one in the kitchen, then the modular type is for you.
You can choose different units, arrange them and rearrange them in a way that best suits your spaces.
4. Kitchens designed for Cooking with Fire
If you like cooking with fire and outdoor space is not a problem, the traditional wood-burning oven is a must and should be the cornerstone of your design. No oven cooks as well and evokes traditional cooking as the wood-burning oven.
Alfa continues to invest in refractory materials to manufacture high-performance wood-fired ovens and we offer Cupolino for those looking for the perfect base to create your own customized oven.
5. Fully equipped, sheltered kitchen
If you don’t have space and spending limits, you can choose to set up a fully furnished outdoor kitchen with sink, worktop and many different cooking appliances.
If the available fuel in your region is gas, installing a gas-fired oven or a cooker flanked by a barbecue or a griddle would certainly be a good idea. If you go for wood instead, a brick or a steel oven with permanent barbecue and griddle would be right up your alley
Making the most of the space with the equipment that suits to your cooking style is the name of the game and we hope we have given you some useful pointers to help you in your search.
How to furnish an outdoor kitchen with Alfa ovens
Alfa ovens are not only outstanding cooking appliances, but they are also striking pieces of furniture for any type of open-air kitchen due to an insane attention design-wise.
Our wood and gas-fired ovens have the instinctive ability to convey the harmony between tradition and innovation exemplified by the encounter of the fire on refractory stone inside a metal dome.
In this article, we have examined the various factors to consider when setting up an outdoor kitchen. Then, we have matched the different cooking appliances to the diverse kinds of environment (modular, uncovered or covered kitchen), the type of fuel (wood, gas or both), the budget and the space available.
After many years of hard work and pursuit of excellence, the Alfa brand has established itself as a leader in the field of high-performance design ovens that double themselves to decorate outdoor space in the nicest way.