Adding an outdoor kitchen is a wonderful method of expanding your living space, and cooking outdoors is an excellent way to bring together friends and family.
On that note the countertop is a basic element of any kitchen – indoors or out. It should be functional as well as cost-effective, so consider the weather in your area when deciding on your countertop material, as well as budget and style.
Top 5 Outdoor Kitchen Countertop Materials
Here are some of the best countertop options for your outdoor kitchen.
1. Granite Countertops
If you’re looking for durability and style, granite countertops should be at the top of your list as they’re easily one of the most loved options. Traditional granite countertops are both beautiful and long-lasting, making them one of the most sought-after options for outdoor kitchens.
Available in different colours and patterns, this natural element holds up well and doesn’t fade when exposed to harsh weather, including the sun’s UV rays. Its natural texture is also unique and looks expensive.
Granite countertops are meant to be used extensively without incurring much wear and tear, but as perfect as they seem, they will cost you, depending on where they come from. If you have a tight budget, we suggest you reduce costs by sourcing local wholesalers yourself. Installation and fabrication, however, should be handled by a professional.
When designing your countertops, granite allows for virtually limitless choices. Matching cabinets, however, can be a challenge owing to granite’s unique natural texture.
And while granite countertops are beautiful, they require care. If you’re a messy cook, practice caution as spilled cooking materials such as oil, turmeric, soda and wine can cause staining if left unattended. Annual sealing will help keep out mildew and moss, as well as increase longevity. Go for a honed finish as they are more weather-resistant and long-lasting than a polished finish.
2. Quartz Countertops
This is an interesting option for homeowners who want a natural stone kitchen countertop style but still want the option to make it their own.
As quartz is 95% ground natural quartz and 5%polymer resins, quartz countertops give you the best of both worlds. Unlike marble or granite ones, they can be customized while still looking like real stone. Quartz countertops are also environment friendly, They’re much harder than granite ones and therefore more durable, but they’re also a lot heavier and need to be professionally installed.
Being mechanically engineered, they’re non-porous and therefore relatively free of bacteria. Quartz countertops may not be the best option for an outdoor kitchen if it doesn’t have a shed. It is better to avoid putting hot pans directly on the surface to avoid damage.
While there are certain advantages to quartz countertops, they’re not the most viable option for an outdoor kitchen. This is because they tend to fade with long-term exposure to direct sunlight, which should be kept in mind if your outdoor kitchen design doesn’t include a shed. Quartz countertops are an excellent choice in terms of customization and durability but can be expensive, so consider all your needs.
3. Concrete Countertops
Concrete countertops are extremely durable and a current favourite for contemporary earthy spaces. As they are highly customisable in any colour, there are a variety of options to try different stains and textures.
Concrete is readily available and thus cheaper than natural stones, making it a cost-effective solution for your outdoor kitchen. Concrete countertops have their advantages; they can resist wear and tear, but they must be carefully installed and sealed to prevent staining.
4. Soapstone Countertops
A natural soapstone countertop is perfect if you want your outdoor kitchen to have a warm, modern look without breaking the bank. The stone’s natural pattern adds distinctive character to your outdoor space, while its extremely compact structure minimizes bacterial growth, making it sanitary and easier to clean.
Soapstone is mostly used to build fireplaces as it’s very heat resistant. It’s also low maintenance, with only periodic cleaning using special mineral oil required to restore and enhance. If you’re looking for a customizable, low-maintenance countertop, soapstone is worth your consideration.
5. Tile Countertops
Tile countertops are an excellent choice if you’re looking for something striking to enhance your outdoor kitchen’s style. Tiles allow you to create patterns and textures but may not be the best surface option.
One of their major issues is that they’re not easy to clean as they’re porous and therefore promote mildew and moss growth. The grout must be periodically cleaned and sealed to reduce staining, making it a recurrent cost.
While tile provides you with ample choices in terms of customisation, they’re neither durable nor cost-effective long-term. It is their low price-range that makes tiles a popular kitchen countertop choice.
An outdoor kitchen adds value to your property. While you can compromise on the kitchen’s size, choose the material for your outdoor kitchen countertop wisely as this is one of its most visible and used elements. Make sure it offers sustainability as well as style. Have questions? Consult one of our professional countertop installers to plan your dream outdoor kitchen.