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9 of the Coolest Outdoor Kitchen Appliances We've Installed

Posted On: February 12,2018 By: Mary Dresser, RLA ALSA

Best outdoor kitchen appliances for Lancaster, Reading, York, & Harrisburg, PAWhether it’s boiling a big pot of corn outside, grabbing a cold soda from the fridge, or even just having a place to neatly tuck away the trash, it’s the outdoor kitchen appliances that can make or break the convenience factor of your brand-new outdoor kitchen.

They might seem like small details, but it’s appliances like these that really complete the space. After all, nobody wants to take a seat at the bar only to realize they have to trudge all the way back to the house to get a cold drink. And when you’re in the midst of cooking raw chicken, it’s not enough to just wipe your hands on a towel. You want to be able to actually wash them in a sink with running water.

While an ordinary landscape contractor might point you toward a pre-fab grill unit or install a nearby spigot to give you running water, you’re interested in much more creative solutions than that. You want outdoor kitchen appliances that live up to the gorgeous look of the rest of your outdoor living area.

Some contractors might not even get into special features that go above and beyond. They may have not even installed some of them. But don’t you want to hear about all of the different options out there?


Watch this Case Study Video Featuring a New Outdoor Kitchen!



Just like every other detail of your outdoor kitchen space, choosing the right appliances is a very personal choice. We’ve rounded up 10 of the coolest, most exciting examples of some of the appliances we’ve installed.


1. The Grill

Of all of the outdoor kitchen appliances, the grill is clearly the most important. It’s where you’ll likely do the majority of your outdoor cooking and for that reason, it’s pretty essential to the whole space. Of course, not all grills are created equal. Grills can vary dramatically in size as well as accessories and what level of built-in grill you prefer really comes down to personal expectations as well as how into grilling you are.

Best outdoor kitchen appliances for Lancaster, Reading, York, & Harrisburg, PA

Some homeowners want all of the bells and whistles, such as this grill which has digital controls, temperature read-out capabilities for each individual burner, a timer, and a temperature probe. Size is also a factor and depending how often you cook for a lot of guests, you might want to choose a larger grill, such as this 48-inch grill, which allows the user to prepare plenty of food for family and friends.

We even had another client who often entertained her grandchildren and wanted to be able to fit two large pizzas on the upper rack for dinners. A 48-inch grill like this suited her needs as well.


2. Flat-Top Grill

While it is in fact another type of grill, a flat-top or Hibachi-style grill is unique enough that we gave it its own category. This is an opportunity to make cooking into entertainment. Whether you’re making a stir-fry or some crepes, cooking on a flat-top grill can be an experience, much like dining at a Hibachi restaurant. Oftentimes we’ll build some U-shaped or square-shaped counter space around the grill in order to truly make it into a party.


3. Power Burner

Best outdoor kitchen appliances for Lancaster, Reading, York, & Harrisburg, PAA power burner is a high-intensity burner that can bring a huge pot of water to boiling temperature in just a couple of minutes. Homeowners love using it to boil their corn or clams outside while simultaneously grilling their meat nearby.

The fitting term of “power” is suitable, because these burners put out way more heat than those tiny side burners in most of the grills you’ll find at the big box store.

When we install a power burner, we typically recess it about eight inches lower than the countertop. This allows you to put a huge pot onto it without requiring you to lift it high.

It also gives you the ability to easily see into the pot to monitor how the cooking is going. With a power burner you’ll be able to cook faster and enjoy cooking outside.


4. Smoker

If you’re someone that loves smoking meats, then you might include a Big Green Egg, or another type of smoker, as one of your outdoor kitchen accessories. Building it into the countertop is a great option, as this homeowner wanted done in order to have more working space to prep meats.

Best outdoor kitchen appliances for Lancaster, Reading, York, & Harrisburg, PA

Of course, that’s not a necessity. We’ve also installed galley style kitchens where the smoker could be wheeled in on a cart. If you’ve already invested in a nice cart for your smoker then you might want an outdoor kitchen design that accommodates that cart being easily wheeled in and out of the space.


5. Pizza Oven

Best outdoor kitchen appliances for Lancaster, Reading, York, & Harrisburg, PAImagine a backyard pizza party where friends and family gather and help assemble and bake their own pies. With a pizza oven as one of your outdoor kitchen appliances you can create an entire destination around cooking.

This particular pizza oven is 36 inches in diameter with enough cooking space for three medium-sized pizzas, which was a specific request from the client.

It features a custom clay chimney pot, a custom circular roof, and a wood storage area built into the stone structure.

Adjacent to the pizza oven we added kitchen cabinets with granite countertops to create a pizza preparation zone.


6. Sink

A sink can add a lot of convenience to your outdoor kitchen space by allowing you to wash your hands after touching raw meat or even giving you a place to wash the dishes before putting them away.

This eliminates having to cart everything back to the house when it can be washed and stored right in the outdoor kitchen. It might seem like a small detail but it makes the kitchen a much more comfortable and complete outdoor destination.

7. Outdoor Refrigerator

On a hot day, instead of having to run back into the house or keep a cooler filled with ice, you’ll be able to grab a cold beverage any time from your outdoor refrigerator. Most people find this added convenience a necessity and include outdoor refrigeration on their must-have list of outdoor kitchen appliances.

Best outdoor kitchen appliances for Lancaster, Reading, York, & Harrisburg, PA

Of course, a freezer is also an option should you be someone that likes to have ice handy or even store meat or other frozen items down in the kitchen area.  


8. Warming Drawers

If you typically entertain a lot of people, then a warming drawer would certainly make your life easier. That’s because you can keep your already-cooked foods warm as you continue to cook more. It’s a nice touch to your outdoor kitchen that will greatly simplify your ability to entertain.

Warming drawers are ideal to help keep everything warm until it’s ready to serve.


9. Trash Receptacle

Best outdoor kitchen appliances for Lancaster, Reading, York, & Harrisburg, PASay goodbye to plastic eyesore trash cans or big garbage bags at your party.

With a built-in trash receptacle like this, you can be certain that trash has a place to go without having to be on display (or stinking up the party).

Adding an adjoining recycling bin also provides a spot for those cans to get neatly tucked away until it’s time to empty them.

With such a beautiful outdoor kitchen space, the last thing you want to do is clutter it up with trash or unnecessary trash cans.


The Best Outdoor Kitchen Appliance Layout

In the end, how your appliances are laid out is just as important as what appliances you choose. In your landscape design, thought should be given to specific details such as where you’d like to stand while you are grilling. Do you need to see the kids in the pool? Will you be interacting with guests that you are cooking for? Where will guests be seated?

Clearly, there are many factors to consider in regard to the layout.

The goal is to get to the heart of your wants and needs to ensure that the space is designed specifically for you. With the right accessories and the right layout, you will be on your way toward the kitchen of your dreams.


Choosing Wisely

Best outdoor kitchen appliances for Lancaster, Reading, York, & Harrisburg, PABut there’s a final piece to the puzzle, and it’s one that will ensure all of your plans actually come together the way you want. That third piece is choosing the right outdoor kitchen contractor for the job.

You may have already put in the work on your end such as researching what outdoor kitchen appliances you like and how you’d like your kitchen to come together. But now you must choose the right company to execute the work.

By choosing an experienced outdoor kitchen company who knows what it takes to bring every aspect of the job together, you’ll be able to feel confident that it will be completed the way you want. You know there’s a lot involved but by choosing a contractor that has the skills, and the experience, to handle it, all you’ll have left to do is enjoy your space.

If you’d like to discuss bringing your dream kitchen to life for your Harrisburg, Lancaster, York, Hershey, or Reading, PA home then contact us for a free consultation and get ready to see something spectacular take shape.

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Mary Dresser, RLA ALSA

Written by Mary Dresser, RLA ALSA

Mary Hatch Dresser is a Registered Landscape Architect with a Bachelor’s degree in Landscape Architecture from the University of Georgia School of Environmental Design. Mary has designed landscapes for 32 years and joined ETW exclusively in 2009. Mary is a member of the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA); and also serves on the Shade Tree Committee in Strasburg Borough where she resides. Mary prides herself in carefully listening to her clients to professionally meld their ideas and personal criteria with sound, experienced design practice.

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