Nothing beats the taste of food cooked outdoors on a grill. But when your grill is built on flimsy legs and has about as much counter space as an airline tray, it can be difficult at best to use it for cooking lots of food. But with the following tips and techniques, you can transform your current grill in a luxurious outdoor grill-and for less than you think.
The biggest part of this project is the planning stage. How big do you want it? What features will it have? How close do you want it to your house? These are but a few of the many questions you should ask yourself when planning to build an outdoor kitchen. Take your time with this stage of the process and refine it as you move through each phase of the project. This way, you’ll get just what you want without a lot of wasted materials and time.
The structural components of this outdoor kitchen design are simple: 2×4 pressure treated lumber. You can use this sturdy outdoor wood around all areas of the grill-with this one important exception: DO NOT PLACE ANY WOOD WITHIN 2-in OF THE GRILL. It’s also a good idea to ditch the old metal legs on the grill and bolt it directly to 2-4 sheets of cementious tile backer board. Just keep that wood away at least 2″ or more and you’ll be good to build whatever frame you want.
You’ll also want to set the base of the structure up off of the concrete pad if you plan on setting it on one. A series of well-placed metal dry-bottoms are the best way to protect your grill from dry rot troubles where wet concrete comes into contact with wood.
The covering of the structure is in two parts: an inner substrate of cementious backer board with a cultured stone covering. You can also cover the materials with outdoor rated plywood and covered with lathe/stucco mix as a substrate. No matter what substrate you choose, be sure to use rust-proof fasteners to secure it to the pressure treated lumber. Once you’ve got one side squared up, use the remaining sides to square, level and plumb the frame. Add any plumbing, electrical or other features at this time.
For this outdoor kitchen design, I choose the easiest and most affordable (as well as the strongest and most durable) route that I could take-concrete countertops. While the process is pretty detailed and takes up a whole article in itself the job is easy and makes for one tough outdoor countertop. Take a look at my tutorial on how to create a concrete countertop and get the low down on this great outdoor kitchen countertop material.
Applying faux stone is a very easy task-whether it’s indoors or outdoors. The only difference between the two is that when you’re setting the scratch coat and brown coats, you’ll want to apply a waterproofing agent to the wall after the mortar has dried. It’s just a few simple steps that are easy to do yourself-just follow these tips on installing faux stone indoors and you’ll have your own faux stone outdoor kitchen in no-time flat. Enjoy your outdoor cuisine!