What to Store in Outdoor Kitchen? 15 Essentials

Reading this will take about: 7 minutes
what to store in outdoor kitchen

Do you wonder what to store in outdoor kitchen? I prepared a full list of essentials for every outdoor kitchen. The list is full of things, that are useful while alfresco cooking. I hope you can fit them all in your precious cabinets.

What to store in an outdoor kitchen? These are my outdoor kitchen necessities (and nice-to-haves):

  1. Gas/ wood chips/ charcoal
  2. Fire extinguisher/ fire blanket
  3. Garbage can
  4. Cutting Boards
  5. Paper towels
  6. Pots and pans
  7. Dishes and plates
  8. Utensils
  9. Food
  10. Spices
  11. Wine
  12. Ice
  13. Cleaning supplies
  14. Hot mitts, grill brush
  15. Tarp

The list is pretty hefty and your kitchen storage is not? Let’s dive into details to figure out what your needs are.

outdoor kitchen gas storage

Gas/ Wood chips/ Charcoal

As the grill is the most important part of the outdoor kitchen very often it needs extra storage space. Fuel is different for each type of grill but has one common aspect: it has to be stored. Going home to get more would be ridiculous or even impossible. So the first things to store in an outdoor kitchen are going to be gas cylinder, charcoal or wood chips.

This does not apply only to kitchens with electric BBQ, or connected to gas installation. If you’re in this group you’re lucky to have extra space.

outdoor kitchen fire blanket

Fire extinguisher

Can you believe that 49% of home fires are caused by cooking? It’s worth being wise ahead of time and placing fire extinguisher in your outdoor kitchen. How to choose the one that is going to work well with your grill?

Most of the outdoor kitchen fires are fueled by cooking oils and greases. There is a special type of extinguisher that is dedicated for cooking: Class K Fire Extinguishers. Potassium Acetate and Potassium Citrate agent prevents reignition and oils from splashing.


By the way: never live your grill, while on, unattended. Very often fire begins when the outdoor kitchen area is unattended.

outdoor kitchen garbage can

Garbage can

Cooking is a process that usually produces trash. The amount depends on a lifestyle (hello fellow zero wasters!), but it’s nearly impossible to produce none. If you want to use your kitchen in a comfy way, trash storage is a problem that needs to be addressed.

First of all you can do all you can to produce trash indoors, so prepare food to be cooked in a kitchen and then place it either under cover, in the fridge or one of those amazing storage drawers that you can put in everything you planned to prepare. Unfortunately, even if you’ll go this direction you’re going to produce less trash outside, but not none.

So the second thing to do is to figure a place for trash. It can be inside one of the cabinets (under the sink?), or outside. If you segregate your trash buying a solution that has separated spaces for organic, plastic or glass is going to help you a lot!

outdoor kitchen cutting board

Cutting boards

If there is something you’re going to use constantly in your outdoor kitchen it has to be a cutting board. Doesn’t matter if you’re vegetarian or live for a rare steak. Cutting board is going to be something so important in your outdoor kitchen, that you’re going to want to have more than one.

Why it’s such an important accessory? Your BBQ stainless steel is resistant to many factors but not to knives. And you know what? Your precious stone countertops are going to appreciate cutting boards as well.

outdoor kitchen paper towels

Paper towels

Paper towels and napkins are a necessity during outdoor kitchen parties. While grilling a lot of oil is used, so paper towels help a lot in keeping your hands and area clean. They can be exchanged into reusable kitchen cloths, but either solution you’re going to choose, it needs to be stored somewhere.

There are those amazing drawers with hidden paper holders, but that is something that should be preinstalled while construction. If you’re not a happy owner of one, there are other things that can be done.

For disposables, a stand can be placed on the counter or wall mount. For reusables two baskets are going to do the trick: one for fresh and second one for used.

outdoor kitchen pots and pans

Pots and pans

If you’re a lucky owner of a big enough kitchen to fit your pots and pans it’s worth buying a few dedicated for outdoors. Usually, the kitchen able to store pot and pans is at least 16′ long, but a person with organizing skills might be able to fit a few even in a shorter one.

What kind of pots and pans to look for? In my opinion, durability is key. Iron is a great material for cooking outdoors. The set of pots and pans can be customized to your needs and even include a bit of extravaganza, like jaafle iron for cakes, panini press, or waffle iron.

outdoor kitchen dishes and plates

Dishes and plates

You have some storage to use after putting in lovely pots and pans set? Using it for dishes and plates is going to make it so much easier to throw a classy party (and make disposable dishes idea fade away).

What’s worth having? Set of plates, salad bowls, dip & sauce dishes, and plateau should make a trick. If you do not have enough space plateau can be replaced by one of the amazing cutting boards you already stored in your outdoor kitchen, didn’t you?

outdoor kitchen utensils


What a subject! Each outdoor kitchen chef has a utensil that he sticks to. You can be one of the BBQ claws worshipers or feel like spatula and tonsils are enough. It’s always worth considering stainless steel corn holders or skewers. To me an important one is basting brush, as it makes spreading oil or glaze so much easier and more accurate.

The best storage space for utensils is a drawer. So if you have one it’s worth dedicating it to utensils. They can hang on hooks to, but it makes them less hygienic.


That is an interesting one for an outdoor kitchen, as usually food is not stored in it for longer than few hours. There is a fridge in which some of the food can and will be put in, but let’s be honest – it’s pretty small. Even if you have a vine fridge as well it may be not enough space.

That is the reason they invented those great food drawers. So basically all the food can be prepared to be cooked inhouse then transferred to drawers outside. When the party is started there is an easy access to well-organized food waiting to be grilled. Just so you know, those drawers can not only store, but also warm hot-dog and hamburger buns.

If you’re not a lucky owner of food drawers there are other solutions. First of all fridge space can be organized like a military unit. Secondly, there is a variety of trays with lids – they’re worth buying as not only do they make cooking so much easier, but also food safe from insects.

outdoor kitchen spices


Spices should be stored wherever you cook. Usually, each chef has a number of them he or she plays with. A basic set of spices includes salt, black pepper, paprika (I absolutely love smoked one!), granulated garlic and onion. It can be vastly developed with other spices like cumin, chipotle pepper, chili powder and herbs like cilantro, rosemary, basil or thyme.

You’ll create your dream set over time. Also: you’ll be proud to have it.

wine fridge in an outdoor kitchen

Wine (and beer)

Wine tastes best if it’s served in the proper temperature. It doesn’t change outdoors, so let’s dive into numbers.

Type of wineSparkling WineLight White WinesFull-Bodied White WinesLight Red WinesFull-Bodied Red Wines
Serving temperature45 – 48 ̊ F 45 – 50 ̊ F 50 – 55 ̊ F 55 – 60 ̊ F 60 – 65 ̊ F

What’s important this is usually not the ambient temperature during servings. So those who value wine tastings usually install built-in or separate wine fridges.

It’s so much easier with beer. A bucket with ice in it will do the trick most of the time.

outdoor kitchen ice bucket


If you use ice for your drink recipes you may want to have storage for it outside. There are, of course, built-in solutions for outdoor kitchens, but if you don’t have one, an insulated bucket with the lid will do the trick.

outdoor kitchen cleaning supplies

Cleaning supplies

If only you have enough storage to fit them in your kitchen it’s worth it. If not there should be a spot nearby you can use. As every area where food is prepared an outdoor kitchen needs to be cleaned on a regular basis. Often before and after usage. Therefore an accessible set of cleaning supplies is going to be useful.

outdoor kitchen brush and mittens

Hot mitts, grill brush

And more cleaning it is. A grill after usage needs to be cleaned. The type does not matter that much. If you prepare food on an appliance it needs to be sanitary. As this has to be done on a regular basis, access to hot mitts and brush is essential. If it doesn’t fit in one of the cabinets figure a space nearby you can put it in (and check again if the cabinet under grill has some space left).

outdoor kitchen tarp


Yep, a covering. If you have a cabinet, that is afar from cooking zones, use it to store a tarp. This way you’re not going to forget where it is when it’s needed. And when you do not use your outdoor kitchen for a longer period it’s always worth covering – after all that is the space you use for food preparation.

Magdalena Dutkiewicz

I like looking for solutions that lead to specific plans. Of course, looking for inspiration for outdoor kitchens is something I really enjoy too. But translating it into an action plan is something that pushes me to act.

Recent Content