If you’re transforming your garden, patio, or roof terrace by adding an outdoor kitchen then one of the key decisions you’ll make is what it will look like. Now, that may sound obvious, but the materials you choose will dictate the appearance of the kitchen itself and influence the look and feel of the outdoor space too. It’s important to get it right. Here are some tips from the CENA design team to help you towards select the right materials for your perfect outdoor kitchen.


Is this last piece in the garden design puzzle?

If you’ve already undertaken a full garden redesign, the materials you choose may be dictated by what you’ve put in place. Perhaps you’ve included a garden room or pergola and would like to match your kitchen to the shade of wood they are crafted from? Or you’ve chosen a sleek aluminium sun shade and modern outdoor furniture design, so you might prefer an aluminium-clad kitchen to match?


….or the first element of a new project?

If you’ve been tempted by the idea of an outdoor kitchen you will find that once the project gets underway you might be inspired to change a little more than just your BBQ. An outdoor kitchen can sometimes necessitate a new patio, sun/rain protection plus plumbing and electricity to new areas of the garden. This means that some customers choose to undertake further landscaping or a full garden redesign at the same time. If the outdoor kitchen is the first piece of the puzzle in your dream garden, it means you can choose the materials you love the most!


What are the outdoor kitchen material options open to me?

Wood: for those who are aiming for a traditional, rustic or natural appearance for their outdoor kitchen, wood is the ideal material. CENA outdoor kitchens are available in cedar cladding (built around an aluminium chassis), with oak and meranti also available for bridging elements, countertops, shelves and other additions. You can choose from a wide range of countertop materials including slate, granite and marble.

Poured concrete. Low maintenance and contemporary in appearance, a poured concrete outdoor kitchen will make a striking addition to a garden. Our poured concrete is available in a range of colours including dark granite, grey granite, cream, natural concrete and terracotta. Our poured concrete can be flecked with crystals and are available with a waxed or wet-look finish.

Metal. A metal outdoor kitchen gives a sleek appearance and is perfect for those who love a modern design theme in their garden. Choose from stainless steel, brushed aluminium, CorTen steel and powder coated aluminium (which is available in a wide range of colours).


What are the pros and cons of different materials?

Wood cladding or accents on an outdoor kitchen will need a little TLC each year to ensure they stay in great shape in the great British weather.

Marble work surfaces in light colours can stain, so take care with vibrant spices, bright fruit and vegetables and red wine. Dark coloured granite is so striking and very hardwearing when sealed properly, but when exposed to the sun it will absorb the heat quickly. It can become very warm to touch, which isn’t ideal if you then want to prepare shellfish or salads in a hurry!

There are upsides and potential issues with all materials. At CENA, we think it is all about striking the balance between aesthetics and functionality. You want your outdoor kitchen to look as good as possible, but it needs to be a place where you can enjoy cooking too.


What to do next?

If you’re still a little stuck about what materials to choose, don’t panic.  The CENA design team are ready and waiting to help you choose the perfect materials for your dream outdoor kitchen. Just drop us a line to arrange your free design consultation today.