39 Inexpensive Covered Outdoor Kitchen Ideas

The warm weather is here and you know what that means –

Creating a fabulous outdoor kitchen!

Yes, grab that outdoor pizza oven, your fruit tray, of course the BBQ, and comfy patio chairs and let’s check out some inexpensive covered outdoor kitchen ideas!

That’s a mouthful and it should be.

I want a covered outdoor kitchen for those hot sunny days. I mean, I want to chill out, relax and enjoy my backyard with a covered patio and kitchen.

Whether you have a small house and small backyard, or a shared backyard in your apartment complex, you can create a chillax outdoor kitchen that everyone will enjoy.

So, let’s check out these outdoor kitchen ideas that are inexpensive.

How to Plan a Covered Outdoor Kitchen in Your Backyard

Planning an outdoor kitchen in your backyard can transform your outdoor space into a perfect spot for cooking and entertaining. Here’s how to get started:

1. Choose the Location

Select a flat, convenient spot near your house for easy access.

It’s a good idea to find a place with some natural shade, but make sure it’s not directly under large trees to avoid falling debris.

You also want to have it close to house in case of a fire or you need some extra things in your fridge inside.

2. Add a Cover

A cover is essential for protecting your kitchen from the elements.

Consider options like a pergola, a retractable awning, or a solid roof. This will help you enjoy your outdoor kitchen in various weather conditions and add an attractive feature to your backyard.

My grandparents use this to shade their patio and outdoor kitchen and they love it.

3. Plan Your Zones

Your outdoor kitchen should have three main areas: prep, cook, and seating. The prep zone should have ample counter space and, if possible, a sink.

The cooking zone is for your grill, stove, or pizza oven.

The seating area should have enough space for dining and relaxing, whether it’s a dining table or comfortable lounge chairs.

4. Set Up Utilities

Ensure you have the necessary utilities in place.

Install electrical outlets for your appliances, a water line for the sink, and a gas line for the grill if needed. Proper utilities will make your kitchen functional and convenient.

5. Choose Durable Materials

Opt for weather-resistant materials for your outdoor kitchen. Stainless steel, stone, and treated wood are great choices that can withstand the elements and still look great over time.

What is the Best Layout for an Outdoor Kitchen?

The best layout for an outdoor kitchen is all about maximizing functionality and flow.

A U-shape or L-shape design is the way to go. With a U-shaped layout, you get tons of counter space and clear separation for prep, cooking, and dining areas. Perfect for those backyard BBQs with friends!

An L-shaped layout is ideal if you’re working with a smaller space.

It’s compact but super practical, giving you distinct areas for cooking and prep without feeling cramped.

No matter the shape, make sure to divide your zones: prep (counter space, sink), cooking (grill, stove), and entertaining (seating, dining area).

Keep things spacious enough to move around easily.

Adding an island can be a game-changer for extra prep or serving space. And if you can, place your kitchen near the house to make hooking up water, gas, and electricity a breeze.

Inexpensive Covered Outdoor Kitchen Ideas – BBQ Area

Want an outdoor kitchen without breaking the bank?

Creating a functional and stylish outdoor kitchen doesn’t have to cost a fortune.

With some clever planning and a bit of creativity, you can design a covered outdoor kitchen that’s both affordable and perfect for entertaining.

Here are some budget-friendly ideas to help you get started.

DIY Inexpensive Covered Outdoor Kitchen Ideas

Go Ahead and DIY Your Pergola

Building your own pergola can be a cost-effective way to create a stylish, shaded area for your outdoor kitchen.

Here’s how you can do it using budget-friendly materials like pressure-treated wood or PVC pipes:

Materials Needed:

  • Pressure-Treated Wood or PVC Pipes: These are durable and weather-resistant, making them perfect for outdoor use. Pressure-treated wood is great for a natural look, while PVC pipes offer a sleek, modern feel.
  • Concrete Footings or Post Anchors: To securely anchor the pergola to the ground.
  • Brackets and Screws: For assembling the structure.
  • Paint or Stain: Optional, to protect and customize the appearance of the wood or PVC.

Steps to Build:

  1. Design and Prepare the Site:
    • Decide on the size and style of your pergola.
    • Choose a flat, level area in your backyard, clear any debris, and mark where the posts will go.
  2. Set the Posts:
    • For Wood: Dig holes for the posts, set them in concrete footings to ensure stability.
    • For PVC: Use post anchors to secure the pipes in place, and fill the PVC pipes with concrete for extra stability.
  3. Build the Frame and Add Cross Beams:
    • Connect the posts with horizontal beams at the top using brackets and screws.
    • Add cross beams spaced evenly across the top, securing them with screws or PVC connectors.
  4. Finish the Pergola:
    • Sand any rough edges and apply paint or stain to protect the wood from the elements, or ensure PVC connections are tight and optionally paint them.
    • Add a shade cloth or outdoor fabric for extra shade, and consider planting climbing vines for a natural, green cover.

Here are some ideas and inspo for you:

6. Relaxing Pergola

7. Boho Inspired Pergola

8. Bar + Outdoor Kitchen Check

9. Use a Privacy Screen For Seating

10. Pergola For Just Seating

11. Intimate Pergola Outdoor Kitchen

12. Rustic Charm Outdoor Kitchen

Use Bricks to Build Your Outdoor Kitchen

Building your outdoor kitchen with bricks can create a durable, stylish, and rustic look. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you get started:

Materials Needed:

  • Bricks: Weather-resistant bricks suitable for outdoor use.
  • Mortar Mix: To bind the bricks together.
  • Concrete Foundation: For a stable base.
  • Rebar (Optional): For added structural support.
  • Tools: Trowel, level, tape measure, string line, and brick saw.

Steps to Build:

  1. Plan and Design:
    • Sketch the layout of your outdoor kitchen, including the locations of appliances like grills, sinks, and counters.
    • Measure the space and calculate the number of bricks needed.
  2. Prepare the Foundation:
    • Clear the area and excavate to a depth of 6-8 inches.
    • Fill with a gravel base and pour a concrete slab over it. Ensure the slab is level and let it cure fully.
  3. Lay the Bricks:
    • Mix the mortar according to instructions.
    • Start at a corner and lay the first course of bricks on the concrete foundation, applying mortar to each brick and pressing it into place.
    • Use a level for even bricks and a string line for straight rows. Continue laying bricks in a staggered pattern, checking for level and alignment regularly.
  4. Build and Finish:
    • Construct the base walls for counters and appliances, allowing the mortar to set and cure.
    • Install your grill, sink, and other appliances into the designated spaces, securing them properly.
    • Smooth the mortar joints for a clean finish. Optionally, paint or seal the bricks for added protection.

Let’s check out some inspo ideas!

13. Cinder Block BBQ

14. Stone Outdoor Kitchen

15. All Brick Outdoor Kitchen

16. Clean Look

17. Metal and Cinder Blocks

18. Step By Step Set Up

19. Rustic Modern Outdoor Kitchen

20. Modern Design

Other Inexpensive Outdoor Kitchen Ideas You Can Add

Let’s check out some more easy and inexpensive ways to transform your backyard into an amazing hangout with your outdoor kitchen.

21. DIY Outdoor Curtains

DIY curtains are a stylish and affordable way to add shade and privacy to your outdoor kitchen.

Choose durable, weather-resistant fabrics like canvas or drop cloths that can withstand the elements. Opt for light colors to reflect sunlight and keep the area cool.

You can also add grommets or curtain rings for easy hanging and a polished look. If you want a more personalized touch, consider stenciling patterns or designs onto the fabric.

22. Outdoor Rugs

Help define and enhance your outdoor kitchen space with an outdoor rug.

Look for rugs made from weather-resistant materials like polypropylene or recycled plastic, which are designed to withstand moisture and sun exposure.

Select a size that fits your kitchen layout and consider patterns that complement your outdoor decor. Non-slip backing is a useful feature to prevent shifting and ensure safety.

An outdoor rug not only adds comfort but also makes the space feel more inviting and finished.

23. String Lights

String lights are perfect for creating a cozy and inviting atmosphere in your outdoor kitchen.

Choose LED string lights for energy efficiency and durability. You can find various styles, from classic bulb designs to fairy lights, to match your aesthetic.

Opt for waterproof and weatherproof options to ensure they last through different seasons.

Consider solar-powered lights to eliminate the need for electrical outlets and reduce energy costs. String lights are easy to install and can be draped across pergolas, fences, or trees for a magical effect.

24. Have Tile Accents

Tile accents are a great way to add a decorative touch to your outdoor kitchen without breaking the bank. Choose affordable ceramic or porcelain tiles that are rated for outdoor use.

Mosaic tiles can create eye-catching patterns for backsplashes or countertops.

Consider using larger tiles to cover more surface area with fewer grout lines, making them easier to clean.

Tiles come in various colors and designs, allowing you to customize the look of your kitchen. Ensure proper installation with outdoor-rated adhesive and grout to maintain durability.

25. Pallet Patio

Pallet furniture offers a budget-friendly and customizable option for furnishing your outdoor kitchen. Using wooden pallets, you can create a variety of pieces that add both functionality and charm to your outdoor space. Here’s how to make the most of this versatile material.

Plus, it looks chic!

26. Use Solar Powered Lights

Solar-powered lights are an excellent choice for lighting your outdoor kitchen.

They are eco-friendly, cost-effective, and easy to install, making them a perfect addition to any backyard space.

I love how they give a nice ambience to your backyard

27. Recycled Metal Sheets

For a more industrial feel to your outdoor kitchen, why not try some recycled metal?

Recycled metal sheets are an innovative and eco-friendly option for adding both style and functionality to your outdoor kitchen. Utilizing these materials can create a unique aesthetic while promoting sustainability.

28. Concrete Countertops

Concrete countertops offer a robust, stylish, and affordable option for your outdoor kitchen.

They are known for their durability and versatility, allowing for a range of customizations to suit your personal taste and practical needs.

29. Have an Herb Garden Nearby

Having a herb garden nearby your outdoor kitchen is a fantastic way to enhance your cooking experience and add a touch of natural beauty to your space.

Fresh herbs can elevate the flavors of your dishes and provide a convenient, sustainable source of ingredients.

10 More Inexpensive Ideas for Your Outdoor Kitchen

30. DIY Outdoor Chalkboard: nstall a chalkboard on one of the walls or fences near your outdoor kitchen. This inexpensive addition can serve multiple purposes: jot down recipes, keep a grocery list, or let guests leave messages. Use weather-resistant materials and chalkboard paint to ensure durability.

31. Recycled Tire Seats: Turn old tires into stylish and functional seating. Clean and paint the tires in vibrant colors, then add a round cushion on top for comfort. These seats are durable, weather-resistant, and provide a fun, eco-friendly seating option.

32. Hanging Mason Jar Lights: Create ambient lighting with mason jars. Fill them with LED fairy lights or small solar lights and hang them from tree branches or pergola beams using sturdy twine or wire. This creates a magical, budget-friendly lighting solution for evening gatherings.

33. DIY Concrete Planters: Make your own concrete planters for herbs or decorative plants. Use old containers or molds to shape the concrete, and once set, paint or stain them to match your outdoor decor. These planters are durable, weather-resistant, and cost-effective.

34. Portable Fire Pit: Build a simple, portable fire pit using a metal bowl or a large planter. Fill it with sand and place a grill grate on top for cooking, or use it for warmth and ambiance during cooler evenings. This allows for flexibility and easy storage when not in use.

35. Painted Cinder Block Shelves: Stack cinder blocks to create sturdy, customizable shelves for your outdoor kitchen. Paint them to match your color scheme and use them to store cooking utensils, plants, or decorative items. This project is both inexpensive and functional.

36. DIY Outdoor Sink: Convert an old sink or large basin into a functional outdoor sink. Connect it to a garden hose for water supply and use a bucket or create a simple drainage system for wastewater. This adds convenience without the need for complex plumbing.

37. Wooden Crate Storage: Use wooden crates for additional storage. Stack and secure them together to create shelves or cubbies for storing cookware, spices, and other kitchen essentials. Paint or stain the crates to protect them from the elements and to add a cohesive look.

38. Pallet Bar: Construct a bar area using wooden pallets. Sand and paint the pallets, then stack them to the desired height and secure them together. Add a countertop, such as a repurposed wooden board or a piece of scrap metal, to complete the bar. This provides a trendy and functional spot for mixing drinks and serving guests.

39. DIY Shade Sail: Create a shade sail using a durable fabric like canvas or a repurposed tarp. Secure it with sturdy poles or attach it to existing structures to provide shade over your cooking area. This is a cost-effective way to stay cool and protect your outdoor kitchen from the sun.

Transform Your Backyard with an Outdoor Kitchen!

I hope these inexpensive and DIY ideas are helpful for your outdoor kitchen.

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