Back to all articles

In the UK, we are spending increasing amounts of time outdoors; our gardens are now spaces in which we live, work, play and entertain. No matter what time of the year, we want to enjoy the outdoors as an extension of our home. Reconnecting and feeling at one with nature, feeling the fresh air and listening to the rustle of trees and the chirps of birds whilst enjoying a coffee, reading a book, or dining outdoors, is good for the soul and mental health.

Reframing our outdoor spaces as extensions of our homes means that our gardens, balconies and terraces can be integrated into our daily routines. As part of this daily adoption, al fresco dining is also becoming more popular as homeowners embrace the desire for outdoor kitchens. The outside cooking experience has become something of an art form, so we take a look at what makes a beautiful outdoor kitchen.

Design principles for an outdoor kitchen

Designing your new outdoor kitchen may seem daunting but, similar to a traditional indoor kitchen, there are some guiding principles to help you along your design journey.

Outdoor kitchen layout and location

Lydia Millen Outdoor KitchenCase Study: Outdoor Country Kitchen

The first step in any kitchen transformation is to consider the exact location of your outdoor kitchen. Naturally, many choose to have it flowing out as a continuation from their indoor dining area, to create a connection between the indoors and out. That said, you may have the perfect sheltered nook or secluded corner that provides the ideal spot for an outdoor dining area.

When the situation has been decided, the layout can take shape. Some sites may lend themselves naturally to a galley style or L-shaped kitchen. When it comes to layout variations, you want to think about the primary use of your kitchen area. Are you more likely to be making the most of the space for a peaceful coffee and a place to sit and read? This is where a casual lounge area works perfectly. Perhaps you’re a budding host and want to use the space for informal dining, BBQs and social gatherings, in which case an outdoor kitchen with a central island or stylish bar would create the perfect hub.

Harmony outside and in

550 Silvax porcelain worktop550 Silvax porcelain worktop

The flow between inside and out is very important; you don’t want to create discord or disconnect, so the aim should always be a harmonious creation. Take inspiration from your main kitchen space to draw comparable stylisation. Integrating into the surroundings is also important, so consider the overall feel of the garden to draw elements into your outdoor kitchen design. Whether you're surrounded by rugged countryside and can draw the natural stone into your scheme, or are embracing a more minimalist, chic outdoor kitchen, then selecting the right worksurface materials to accompany will tie it together.

Coordinating worktops from inside to out is another good way of creating harmony between your designs. When choosing a surface for the outside, it’s more important than ever to choose one which is resilient and can withstand the elements. Our Caesarstone porcelain worktops offer greater reliability and are resistant to fading in harsh sunlight as well as resistant to variable weather conditions. They are a good choice for outdoor settings, remaining highly UV and weather-resistant at all times.

Outdoor kitchen moodboards

With the foundations of the scheme chosen based on your surroundings and indoor spaces, you can create a moodboard. Use your kitchen worktop as the base layer for the scheme in which to build up the colour palette and range of textures. In an outdoor setting, the most complementary shades will be centred in earthy tones. Choosing a light fresh base will provide a timelessly elegant and refreshing look and feel to the space, but opting for deeper greys and neutrals can create a more cosy, intimate outdoor environment.

Untitled design (2)412 Beige Ciment moodboard and 510 Impermia moodboard

For example, 412 Beige Ciment pairs wonderfully with light natural colours and deep blue tones, as well as golden hues through taps and handles. In comparison, 510 Impermia is a much darker porcelain worktop and pairs better with darker woods with beige and taupe accents.

Finishing touches

For the all-important final pieces of the puzzle, kit out your kitchen with appliances that will make al fresco cooking and dining an even more interactive and enjoyable experience. From barbecues to grills, and pizza ovens to wine fridges, incorporating such appliances will elevate your design and make it an even more satisfying space to entertain in. As well as your appliances, consider how your outdoor dining area with complement your outdoor kitchen. Consider using a complimentary tabletop or chairs or use the same worktop surface as the tabletop to pull both spaces together.

Also consider if you wish to have a covered outdoor kitchen, either with a temporary awning that can be put up and taken down, or a more permanent cover. This could allow you to use your new kitchen all year round by covering you from the elements but it may also have the opposite effect, blocking out that all-important sunshine during summer months.

Choosing an outside kitchen worktop

Once you have considered your kitchen layout, it's best to choose your kitchen worktop next so you have a starting point for your mood board and selecting those all-important finishing touches. It’s important to choose a kitchen worktop that will withstand the demands of your outdoor kitchen, such as being resilient against the elements and being easy to clean and keep in prime condition after many years outside.

Caesarstone’s collection of porcelain worktops is perfect for outdoor living. Available in a range of colours and designs, you’ll be sure to find the right worktop as a centrepiece to elevate your outdoor kitchen, no matter if you’re planning a fully equipped outdoor kitchen, a sleek BBQ station or a sophisticated al fresco dining area.

Caesarstone surfaces combine the height of design with practicality and reliability. Our porcelain collection is no exception, benefiting from being non-porous, durable, easy to clean and resistant to scratches, stains, mould and mildew. In addition, they have been meticulously tested to withstand harsh sunlight and variable temperatures, ensuring they remain highly UV and weather-resistant at all times. Plus, all of our Caesarstone surfaces come with a lifetime residential warranty for ultimate peace of mind.

Take a closer look at the Caesarstone outdoor collection

501 Snowdrift501 Snowdrift porcelain worktop

Define your outdoor kitchen with the classic style of white marble with 501 Snowdrift. This elegant surface makes a spectacular stand-alone island feature and works beautifully alongside stainless steel barbecues and wooden butcher blocks. The delicately veined surface has an earthy depth, making it incredibly versatile. This beautiful stone brings a lightness to any outdoor setting, perfectly complementing neutral facades and landscapes.

580 Fume580 Fume porcelain worktop

Another versatile porcelain worktop is 580 Fume. Thanks to its beige base and cream-coloured marble-style veining, Fume pairs well with a range of colours, from darker greys and greens to creams and light taupe. Ideal for a more traditional-style outdoor kitchen, it proves that traditional does not mean old-fashioned, with an opulent yet soft feel and dynamic style.

513 Striata513 Striata porcelain worktop

Porcelain kitchen worktops such as 513 Striata bring an earthier style to outdoor countertops, backsplashes and tables thanks to their accents of rusted silt and patina stains. Perfect in a contemporary setting, pairing well with tactile materials such as concrete, slate, clay pavers and wooden decking.

514 Emprada514 Emprada porcelain worktop

514 Emprada is also a highly versatile porcelain worktop for your outdoor kitchen. Its layers of intense dark browns, fine chalky lines and earthy markings will perfectly complement any modern outdoor kitchen. Consider using statement waterfall worktop edges to showcase the beautiful veining and pair it with dark wooden cabinets, as well as lighter accessories.

Ready to create your dream outdoor kitchen?

No matter how you decide to design your own outdoor kitchen, make sure you choose the right worktop that will remain as beautiful as the day you install it. Our porcelain collection will help you embrace the evolving trends in kitchen design to create a culinary haven that suits your needs and reflects your personal style.

Find your worktop: we’ve made them for everlasting beauty and durability. To help you choose, order samples of your favourite Caesarstone colours directly to your door, free-of-charge.

Request a Sample