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Outdoor Living & Recreation

Outdoor Kitchen Essentials: Creating a Perfect Summer Cooking Space

Outdoor Kitchen Essentials: Creating a Perfect Summer Cooking Space

A well-planned outdoor space is the perfect spot to spend long summer days enjoying the company of others. And knowing what to have on hand will make all the difference for the upcoming grilling season.

If you have family and friends coming over for an afternoon of outdoor cooking and games, you’ll want to read through our guide to creating the perfect summer cooking space. Head to Rough River Hardware to get these summer cooking essentials today.

Choose The Right Location

Planning the location of your outdoor cooking space is the most crucial place to start the process.

If you plan on adding a sink, fridge, or gas line, ensure that the cooking space is close to the house and the necessary hookup lines to add these features.

Shade, foot traffic, and closeness to the eating space should also be considered. If you have a covered patio, this spot will be perfect; but be careful not to impede traffic from the yard into the house.

Choosing a Grill, Smoker, or Flat Top

Although it can be tempting to head to the hardware store and buy a simple barbecue or grill, first consider what foods you plan to enjoy this summer. Consider the following options:

Traditional Cooking Appliance

A grill is the most versatile choice, with options to add cooking burners to the end caps; you can often prepare multiple meals with just one appliance. Many modern appliances also come with rotisserie and small smoking functions.


If you’re more interested in authentic southern barbecue, consider looking into a smoker. They can be more versatile than you might think, with many able to cook hot dogs and burgers quickly but also deliver delectable smoked meats.

Flat Top Grill

A flat top can also be excellent if you plan on cooking many different meals, not just burgers and hot dogs. A flat top can be used for anything you use a pan for. You can even set up an entire pancake breakfast out in the yard.

Consider Installing a Sink

Preparing foods in your outdoor cooking space will require running water, just like cooking indoors. A sink is an excellent addition to fill up water cups, wash dishes, and prepare food.

Get a Mini Fridge

Aside from the obvious function of allowing additional refreshments outside without the messiness of a cooler, a mini fridge can serve multiple functions.

It can store plenty of the food prep you plan to use during your cooking. Having butter, cream, and fresh herbs on hand will make cooking easier.

Add Some Shade

Cooking, smoking, and grilling outdoors in the summertime can be a sweaty business. Add shade like a pergola, awning, or umbrella directly over the main cooking space to ensure your head grillmaster is cool and comfortable.

Buy a Separate Set of Utensils and Serving Dishes

Bringing dishes and utensils and serving trays back and forth from the indoors to the outdoors will cause you a headache sooner rather than later.

Instead, invest in sturdy outdoor dishes, like stoneware, able to withstand the elements or being dropped on the patio floor.

You can also add a drawer or bin for extra cooking utensils like tongs, spatulas, and serving spoons for the same purpose.

Add Lighting for Late Nights

Outdoor lights come in many different shapes, sizes, and functions. You can choose lanterns powered by solar power, large string lights, or even wall lanterns, keeping your workspace illuminated during the evening.

Having the correct lighting for the space can also help to set the mood in the summertime, allowing your guests to feel cozy and comfortable while relaxing on the patio.

All the essentials needed for your perfect outdoor cooking space can be picked up at Rough River Hardware. Our associates are happy to assist in choosing the necessary tools and accessories for summer cooking.

Disclaimer: The information and resources in these articles and on this website are available for informational and educational purposes only. The articles provided on this website are created with every reasonable effort to ensure completeness and accuracy. In doing so, the article writers, publishers, and the business that this website represents assume no responsibility for errors, omissions, or opposed interpretation of the articles and under no circumstance will these parties be held liable for any direct, indirect and/or consequential damages of any kind incurred from undertaking tasks outlined in the articles or on this website. In addition, it is suggested that readers check by-laws, zoning laws and building codes of your local area and country.

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