A Homestead Outdoor Kitchen

A Homestead Outdoor Kitchen | Homestead Honey

Yesterday we did something we’ve kind of been putting off for a few weeks: We moved our entire indoor kitchen to our outdoor kitchen set-up, in anticipation of the plastering and flooring work that needs to happen this season.

If you do a quick Google or Pinterest search for images of “Outdoor Kitchens,” you’ll find some rather inspiring, attractive, and no doubt, expensive arrangements of stainless steel appliances and grills.  Many are centered around warm-season cooking and entertaining and provide space for seating, cooking, and shade.

Our outdoor kitchen’s shade comes from a large tarp, there is no seating, and we cook over a rocket stove and a two-burner propane stove, but the general premise remains the same.  Our outdoor kitchen:

  • Brings the heat outdoors. Cooking takes place outside, thus keeping our house cooler. This is particularly helpful when water bath or pressure canning!
  • Our outdoor kitchen effectively doubles our kitchen space, which is super important for our tiny 350 square foot house
  • We can watch the kids play in the yard or sandbox while we prepare meals
  • As we’re still in the building phase of our homestead creation, an outdoor kitchen is really a necessity as we finish indoor projects

We decided that the general layout of last year’s outdoor kitchen worked rather well for us, so the “bones” of the kitchen remain the same.  We did have to replace the shade/rain tarp, and we are keeping some pantry items indoors for ease of storage.

Outdoor Kitchen counter and food prep space | Homestead Honey

Mid-move out! The counter on the left will be the main food preparation area.  We have oils and sauces, spices, cutting boards, bowls, and knives stored in this area. We will also keep our Berkey water purifier near the counter’s edge for easy kid access.

To the right of the photo is a previously owned stainless steel sink, complete with running water from our house water catchment barrels.  After living without running water for the past 7 months, this is a real treat!  The dishwater drains into plastic buckets, and we use the greywater to water fruit trees.

Rocket stove and propane stove in an outdoor kitchen | Homestead HoneyThe cooking area of our homestead's outdoor kitchen | Homestead Honey

Last year’s set up (above) and our efforts thus far (below). Much of our summer cooking will take place on either a rocket stove, or in a Sun Oven. We have a great two-burner propane stove that we use as well. Often, all of these cooking surfaces are in use at the same time!

Outdoor Kitchen | Homestead Honey

Another photo from last summer, but it shows the layout of our entire outdoor kitchen. To accommodate terrain changes, we had to build a lower-level terrace (behind the cooking area), which I found to be very difficult to navigate quickly. I’d suggest keeping your outdoor kitchen all on one level and orienting key features (sink, cooking area, prep area) in a triangle for ease of work flow.

An effective homestead outdoor kitchen space could be as simple as setting up a few card tables under a shade structure, or as elaborate as you can imagine.  Happy outdoor cooking!

 

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Comments

  1. Looks great! I like how you put the kindling right next to the stoves. Very usable setup.

    We could never do that here, though. You guys must not have bears!

    • Teri Page says:

      True, no bears. I didn’t even think about bears being an issue for an outdoor kitchen, but at the very least, a very small and temporary outdoor set up could be an asset for canning season!

  2. Your kitchen set up looks like a lot of fun. I would like to have an outdoor kitchen to wash and prepare garden foods for long term storage. It would keep the mud from root vegs and other vegetable matter out of the indoors. Insects and strong winds would be a problem. How do you deal with those?

    • Teri Page says:

      We do have some problems with mice and ants, but other insects have not really been an issue. We keep all of our food either in glass jars, or in coolers or rubbermaid containers, which for the most part, keeps them safe.

      As for wind, the tarp is the most vulnerable element in our kitchen, as the wooden frame is really quite sturdy. This year, we beefed it up a bit by putting short “walls” behind the spices and other shelves where we might have glass jars. I bet you could also get cabinets fairly inexpensively at a ReSTORE or other 2nd hand building store and keep things safe in there.

  3. This outdoor kitchen is a wonderful idea! I was wondering what I was going to do in a few days when we get to our new little homestead. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Ed Brown says:

    Here is an outdoor kitchen for you. And it will double as a guest house when I come to visit. Let me know if you need financing. XoEd
    http://kirksville.craigslist.org/search/rva?query=air+stream

  5. I love your outdoor kitchen! I’m always so inspired by your family’s creativity.

  6. I do all my canning outside, as I have a glass topped range. Works great, on our deck, and I can go in and cool off…

  7. Thanks for sharing! This was chosen as a favorite on our From the Farm blog hop!

  8. I love your kitchen! :)
    I just wanted to let you know that I chose this post as my featured post from the From the Farm Blog Hop this week! I look forward to see what you share next!
    ~ Christine

Trackbacks

  1. […] my featured post this week, I chose A Homestead Outdoor Kitchen from Homestead […]

  2. […] While we spend hour after hour working on the interior of our tiny house – moving our bed and kitchen and all our furniture out of doors so we can plaster and install a pantry and wood flooring – […]

  3. […] summer, we moved our kitchen outdoors so we had the spaciousness to finally finish the pantry. Brian created a gorgeous design with […]

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