Why I Love Our Outdoor Cooking Station

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With the warmer weather of spring, now is the perfect time to get everything ready outside for our outdoor cooking station and entertaining.

Most of you know how much I love to cook. (Although I should admit that I enjoy entertaining more than just cooking.) About ten years ago, I talked my husband into adding an outdoor cooking station to our backyard. It’s one of my favorite “rooms” in our home, as I enjoy outdoor cooking. We already had the barbecue and smoker, so adding the outdoor kitchen involved adding the island with the counter and a few kitchen items.

Outdoor Cooking Station

Outdoor Kitchen Station

Outdoor Cooking Station

We added this island, and what a difference! The island has two different counter heights. One for seating (or without the chairs, it makes a perfect bar height) and one counter for prep. I also added storage space, an ice maker, and a refrigerator.

Usually, it doesn’t have so many plants, but I couldn’t resist when I styled it today!

Outdoor Cooking

Outdoor Cooking Station Grill, Cooktop and Smoker

This is the side of our outdoor kitchen that already existed with our green egg and 48″ DCS grill. I call it our outdoor grill station. I just had the grill’s inside redone because many of the parts had deteriorated in the last twenty years. Now I have everything I need for outdoor cooking, which looks almost brand new!

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Outdoor Cooking Station Burners

I added the two burners to the side of the BBQ when we built the kitchen island. In hindsight, I don’t think I needed these, but they seemed like a good thing to do then. It is nice to have the burners to saute veggies, but often, I end up grilling almost everything for the meal! I am happy as long as I can spend my entire time outdoors cooking.

As we planned the outdoor kitchen expansion, I searched for the stainless drawers and cabinets. I looked everywhere and found the best prices on Amazon. You can shop here to see what I mean.

Outdoor Cooking Station

The bricks are original to our house from a hundred years ago. When we remodeled in 2000, we found a brick chimney in the middle of our home, and we used the brick for our outdoor fireplace and patio. We had some leftover bricks, and I am so happy we kept them so we could use them for our outdoor kitchen addition.

The slate on the island is from when we also did our remodel in 2000. I put a slate floor in the mudroom, bath, and craft room, and I saved the extra slate, which we used on the island.

Outdoor Cooking Station

The counter perfectly seats four. I often serve appetizers here to attract family members and dinner guests who can relax and entertain me while cooking.

You may recognize the clay pots that I “aged.” You can find them at How to Make Vintage Garden Pots.

Outdoor Cooking Station and Eating Area

Outdoor Entertaining

If I can set a table anywhere, you know I will! I created a small dinner setting on the backside of the island. Below are the links for the rattan placemats, cream wood chargers, green wine glasses, clear water glasses, black and white plates, and napkins.

Outdoor Cooking Station and Bar

If you consider installing an outdoor kitchen, a prep sink is a great addition. Ours is small but works perfectly. Our island is 9′ long, and the back barbecue island is 8′ long. The eating counter is 20″ wide, and the prep counter is 24″ wide.

Outdoor Cooking Station

I love styling the outdoor kitchen island with items from inside our home. Why not bring the indoors outside when you entertain?

Outdoor Cooking Station and Seating Counter

If you don’t have an outdoor kitchen, add an outdoor island or a vintage piece and create your own! Even vintage potting sheds make perfect outdoor kitchens.

Why not set up an outdoor kitchen bar, too?

Outdoor Kitchen Bar

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I will call some friends and have a little dinner party outside, as the weather is warming up this week.

Outdoor Cooking Station

I would love to know what you think of our outdoor kitchen. It is very well-used, and I am so happy with its look and style.

Outdoor Cooking Station

My Favorite Outdoor Entertaining Must Haves!


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I will be sharing a fun California barbecue dinner soon! If you have any great barbecue recipes, please share them with me!

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Outdoor cooking station with brick island, sing, barbecue, smoker, and plates and food set for dining.

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  1. I love it!!! You’ve thought of everything, even a pretty trash can. Are those mini tobacco baskets from Hobby Lobby? I bought a larger white one to hang on a wall recently but didn’t see this size. Great touch, as always ????

  2. I absolutely LOVE your outdoor living space!!! It’s so inviting and screams come relax and have some fun!!!!! I love your hospitality!!!!! ????

  3. This is brilliant. It seems that you have thought of everything……..even a permanent hole for the umbrella. Love it!!!

  4. Love that you were able to reuse the FP bricks and the mini tobacco baskets are perfect. I’d never leave your backyard 😉

  5. Looks like a dream come true! How about some stories with you cooking up a little something in your outdoor kitchen?

  6. Wow!!! You think of every possible detail…I absolutely love it. Makes me want to get in to gear with getting our backyard done now. I too have to ask where you got your miniature tobacco baskets?!?!?

  7. Your style and warmth of personality are so evident in your approach to entertaining, that’s the very first ingredient in a welcomed come sit a while ???? there’s a big difference in entertaining and serving a guest a dinner with hospitality. You have accomplished that with the relaxed atmosphere and approach to your home and to your guest . Thanks for sharing.

  8. Curious if you don’t mind sharing an approx how much you spent? We are looking at doikg this and have the smoker and bbq already as well! Thanks.

  9. Leslie, hi and thanks for your ideas and amazingly beautiful pictures. You have a very refined taste. We are in love with your outdoor kitchen! My husband and me are very curious on the type of gray tiles that you used for the countertop. Are those procelain tiles? Did you install them in concrete countertop? Also did you paint some of your bricks white? My husband and me would like to create a similar effect in our outdoor kitchen project which we are trying to do ourselves. It has become a necessity for the family to keep the old protected inside. We thank you in advance.

  10. Leslie, hi and thanks for your ideas and amazingly beautiful pictures. You have a very refined taste. We are in love with your outdoor kitchen! My husband and me are very curious on the type of gray tiles that you used for the countertop. Did you use procelain tiles? Were the tiles installed in concrete countertop? Also did you paint some of your bricks white? We are in love with your kitchen! We are hoping for a similar look in our outdoor kitchen project which we are trying to do ourselves. This project has become a necessity now days in order to keep the old more protected inside. We thank you in advance.

  11. Beautiful Leslie! i’m sure my SIL would love to have this. Yesterday when we pulled into the drive way for the special day lunch he had moved the grill in to the garage. Rain!

  12. Such a great post, Leslie! You’ve given so many details about the construction of the Outdoor kitchen. It’s perfection! You’ve given me something to ponder!

    1. Oh I am so happy to hear that Connie! I am glad that you enjoyed the post and have some ideas to ponder!

  13. Hope someday to have an outdoor area to cook. I would love to have an outdoor fireplace too. It’s expensive to get those things done here in Maryland. We are right outside of DC.

    Some great tips and ideas.

    1. We were lucky we had all of the found brick and leftover slate. So happy that you enjoyed the post!

  14. I absolutely love it all ! We have an outdoor space both on the upper deck and the lower patio but need an outside kitchen like yours! Thanks for sharing !

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