Did you know that San Antonio was named the #3 barbecue city in America? Without a doubt, Texas barbecue is high on the list of the nation’s favorite foods. Dry-rubbed meat that’s cooked low and slow is a pitmaster’s dream.
Do you know what else he dreams about? An outdoor kitchen. It’s a hassle going back and forth when you’re entertaining guests, and having a kitchen in your outdoor space solves that problem.
Plus, there’s no doubt that a gorgeous outdoor kitchen will wow your guests, and even induce some kitchen envy.
Are you planning on installing a kitchen outdoors as part of your renovation project? What outdoor kitchen features should you choose for your next cookout? Keep reading to find out the 7 must-have features you can’t miss out on.
1. Two-Sided Grill
Of course, every outdoor kitchen installation includes a grill, so we thought we’d start with the basics. And a barbecue grill does way more than cook steak.
Of course, you’ve got your standard cookout grilling method of direct-heat on your ingredients. But with a double grill, you can choose whether to use gas, charcoal, or even both fuels at the same time!
You’ll also get more surface area to cook on. Why not use one section for fish, another for meats, and a third for veggies?
And you can use pans on the grill, too. Cast iron skillets are a favorite, as they heat up evenly and retain that heat. With a cast iron pan in tow, you can cook anything you would indoors, in your outdoor space.
If you want an upgrade from cast iron, as well as a more even cooking surface, add a griddle to your outdoor kitchen setup. Griddles heat up evenly and maintain their cooking temperature, giving you perfect results every time.
Whip up pancakes, toast brioche buns, flash-cook shrimp, and even make burritos from start to finish. With a griddle in tow, your cooking possibilities will be endless.
If you want to make your own Central Texas barbecue at home, then a smoker is non-negotiable.
First, you’ll need to rub your meat all over with a blend of herbs and spices, and then place it on a smoker filled with your wood of choice. Then sit back and relax while the magic happens.
A smoker might not be on every homeowner’s outdoor remodeling list, but for us here in San Antonio, Texas, it’s a must. Texas barbecue is a beloved classic, and it’s here to stay.
4. Pizza Oven
Who doesn’t love pizza? Nope, we can’t think of anyone either. In fact, a wood-fired pizza with a glass of wine sounds like the perfect Friday night. But why not kick it up a notch and wood-fire your pizza at home?
Pizza is a great way to get the whole family involved in cooking a meal. That means less stress for you, and more time together.
There are a variety of models to choose from, and they range in size. Depending on your available outdoor space, you might want a large built-in model or an oven with a smaller footprint. Either way, your pizzas will be cooked in minutes – close your eyes, take a bite, and you could be in Naples.
A fridge is non-negotiable indoors, and the same is true outside, in our book. No one wants to be running back to the house every five minutes, and missing out on precious time with your guests to boot.
An outdoor refrigerator solves that problem for good.
Not only is it a great place to store ingredients while you’re waiting to cook them, but think about all those chilled drinks! No ice bucket needed – kill two birds with one stone, and keep those beers nice and cold alongside the chow.
What’s the worst part of dinner? If you said washing dishes, we’re on the same wavelength. Cooking and eating great food is fun, but cleaning up afterward can be a pain.
An outdoor kitchen sink really helps lighten the load. Keeping dirty dishes outside saves you from trailing meat juice, leftover sauce, and ice cream back into the house. And you’ll also have access to water outside during the meal, so you can clean up as you go, or wash more dishes as and when you need them.
Bonus tip: kids love the novelty of washing dishes outside. Install a kitchen sink and then try it out! You’ll thank us.
7. Ice Maker
When it’s 97 degrees outside and 90% humidity, you need ice. San Antonio summers are known for their heat, and nothing keeps you cool or is more refreshing than cold, crystal-clear ice.
No matter your budget, an icemaker can be part of your outdoor kitchen installation, as they can be relatively inexpensive. And again, depending on the size of your space, you can choose an ice maker to fit.
Whether it’s outdoor cocktails you’re after, or a way to keep the champagne crisp and bubbly, an ice maker is the way to go.
The Outdoor Kitchen Features You’ve Just Gotta Have
Not only will an outdoor kitchen impress your guests, but with our top 7 features, cooking outside will be a joy. From grilled lobster to barbecue and eggplant to pancakes, no food is impossible when you’ve got the right equipment.
With a double grill and griddle setup, the only limit for meal choices is your imagination. Add in a fridge and sink, and preparation and cleanup will be a breeze.
Are you ready to install the outdoor kitchen of your dreams? Contact us, and let us make your dreams come true with a custom-designed kitchen that’s perfect for you.