How to Build an Outdoor Kitchen with Pavers

A well-built outdoor kitchen gets homeowners thrilled about grilling on summer afternoons with family and friends. While the task of building an outdoor kitchen with pavers sounds like an easy DIY project, it’s best left to professionals. Nevertheless, determined homeowners should know the steps involved.

Outdoor kitchen under retractable canopy roof

What are the benefits of an outdoor kitchen?

Passionate grillers see the enormous benefits of an outdoor kitchen. This feature allows them to entertain a host of friends and family, save on utility bills, and keep burnt smells outside. Given the lower energy bills and higher resale value of the home, who wouldn’t want an outdoor kitchen?

What are pavers?

An outdoor kitchen is usually built from construction blocks, commonly known as pavers or paving stones. The brick-shaped units are also used for building fire pits, walkways, pool decks, and outdoor fireplaces. Their small size, 4 inches x 8 inches, makes them the go-to material for outdoor projects.

Why should an outdoor kitchen be built by professionals?

An outdoor kitchen constructed with pavers is heavy, considering each paver weighs between 10 and 20 pounds. Due to the construction’s sheer weight, the ground must be prepped to support it. Prior to building, it’s necessary to pour a concrete footing.

The footing keeps the surface level and prevents the outdoor kitchen from gradually sinking. Adding the footing is a significant expense and highly challenging, even for experienced contractors. Regardless, the footing is an essential foundation for a well-built outdoor kitchen.

The process of laying pavers is also labor-intensive. Laying each paver must be done correctly the first time if the outdoor kitchen is expected to last. The major investment in time and cost are reasons to leave the construction of an outdoor kitchen to the pros.

How do homeowners build an outdoor kitchen with pavers?

Poolside pergola kitchen

1. Formulate a Detailed Plan

Ambitious homeowners can nevertheless build their outdoor kitchen by first developing a plan. Take into account the kitchen’s shape, dimensions, and layout after assessing the space in which it will be built. Appliance cutouts and the right dimensions are necessary for the appliances.

2. Prepare the Worksite

Decide which utilities will be required to run the outdoor kitchen. Utility lines should be run prior to pouring the concrete footing. If this step is not done, it will be extremely difficult to install the utility lines after the concrete is poured.

3. Pour the Footing

Hiring a professional ensures the footing is poured correctly. The footing should be poured within one inch of the surface level and be double the width of the outdoor kitchen. In geographical areas prone to cold weather, the footing must extend 12 inches beneath the frost line.

4. Prepare the Pavers

Pavers can be made of brick, concrete, or stone. Since brick pavers are highly porous, it is critical to run a hose over them before laying them. This step ensures the brick does not absorb moisture from the mortar once construction starts. Dampen—but do not oversaturate—the pavers.

5. Mark the Foundation

Measure and lay the first course of bricks without mortar. Laying an initial dry course ensures the outdoor kitchen follows the plan. The first layer of bricks serves as the outline. Mark a half-inch space between each brick for the vertical mortar to be later placed between them.

6. Begin the Build

Spread a layer of mortar along the outlined surface. Next apply mortar to the head of the bricks and lay them so that they are positioned firmly against the mortar. After placing the first layer, gauge how level the bricks are before adding additional layers.

7. Create Appliance Cutouts

Openings in the structure are necessary as the build progresses. Incorporate them by measuring the dimensions of the appliance cutouts. Continue laying the bricks until they reach the top of the openings. Place angle irons (steel structural supports) across the cutouts and secure and mortar them.

8. Clean Up for a Neat Look

Laying bricks along the openings mentioned above effectively hides the angle irons. Once the structure is complete, remove the excess mortar with a striking tool and trowel. Prior to completing this step, ensure the mortar is hard enough to retain the imprint of a thumb.

9. Install Countertops and Appliances

A countertop can be custom made so that it fits the outdoor kitchen. Alternately, a DIY countertop can be made by pouring concrete into a mold attached to the island. Place the appliances in their respective openings. Cutouts that are improperly sized can be filled or cut further to fit.

Building an outdoor kitchen is a labor-intensive project that demands precision. These are the reasons homeowners are advised to consult the established brick paver contractor, Pavestone Brick Paving, Inc, to design and install a gorgeous outdoor kitchen that they can feel confident in using year after year.

As a reputable outdoor kitchen contractor with years of experience designing beautiful grill enclosures, fire pits, and outdoor kitchens, we can build the features you desire into your outdoor living space. We offer a diverse array of building materials, including durable brick pavers and stylish natural stone slabs.

full outdoor kitchen

Our professionals are available to assist you in choosing the size, shape, colors, and textures of materials, whether you aim for a rustic aesthetic or a contemporary look to complement your current outdoor living area. Features we install include stove tops, sinks, lights, countertops, and grill islands.

If your outdoor kitchen is already built, we offer quality maintenance and repairs that may be needed after heavy use or weather exposure. Our trained specialists repair, replace, treat, and clean brick pavers and stone slabs to promote their longevity and keep your outdoor kitchen space looking beautiful.

Impress friends and family with an attractive outdoor kitchen designed and installed by Pavestone Brick Paving, Inc. We serve residential homeowners in Des Plaines, Illinois, and the surrounding northern suburbs. When you want to entertain in style, call our outdoor kitchen installation team at (847) 895-7004.

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