The unofficial start to grilling season kicks off on Memorial Day each year, although if you’re lucky enough to live in a warmer climate, grilling season might be a year-round event for you. Serious outdoor cooks may take their passion to its ultimate extreme – the outdoor kitchen. These luxury spaces not only produce some of the tastiest food treats but also provide hours of relaxation and fun.
If you’re committed to stocking your outdoor kitchen with the best grilling products, check out some of these ideas. While some are aspirational, others are quite affordable.
1. Patio Warmer
Things can get chilly after sunset. Keep your outdoor dining nice and toasty with a patio warmer, whether electric or in the form of a fire pit. If you opt for the fire pit, you can also cook out camping-style on it.
2. Cast Iron Griddle
TV cooking show host Rachael Ray swears by grilling on a flat, cast iron surface, even on a barbeque grill. Fortunately, there are a lot of griddles designed specifically for this purpose.
3. Weather-Resistant Outdoor Countertops
When shopping for a new home, what’s the first thing you always look for in the kitchen? Counter top space. It’s absolutely essential to meal prep, and unless you want to take the preparation party indoors, you need outdoor countertop – preferably with cabinets beneath, and perhaps above as well – that can stand rain and the climate.
4. A Good Spice Rub
Even an overnight marinade can only penetrate so far into a piece of meat. For stronger flavor, outdoor cooks find a good spice rub does the trick. You can create your own from your favorite spices or find a pre-mixed one in grocery stores and specialty food shops.
5. Smoker Tube
Do you have a gas grill but love the flavor of a smoker? Add a smoker tube (also called a tube smoker or a smoker pipe) and turn your gas grill into a smoker. Simply add your favorite variety of wood chips to the tube, submerge the whole thing in water for one hour, let the excess water drip out, then place the whole damp thing inside your grill along with your foodstuffs. Viola! You get all the flavor of a smoker without having to buy a separate smoker grill.
6. Cedar Plank
If you love salmon from the grill, than a cedar plank is a great investment. You soak the plank in apple cider, wine, or (for a Japanese cuisine twist) sake. Then you lay the plank directly on the grates of your grill, lay the salmon on the plank, and let it cook.
7. Wood-Fired Pizza Oven
For a truly luxurious outdoor kitchen experience, save yourself a trip to the wood-fired pizzeria and invest in this gourmet dream. Wood-fired pizza ovens are available in built-in models for those planning to build outdoor kitchens, slide-in models that can be added under existing counter top space, and freestanding models that can go anywhere.