Choosing an Outdoor Kitchen Kit

  • Coyote Ready-To-Assemble 8 Ft Outdoor Kitchen Island With 36-Inch S-Series Natural Gas Grill

    Item featured: Coyote Ready-To-Assemble 8 Ft Outdoor Kitchen Island With 36-Inch S-Series Gas Grill

  • By now, you probably know that building an outdoor kitchen can be a pretty involved process. It’s worth the effort, and many even find it enjoyable, but an outdoor kitchen doesn’t just appear in your backyard overnight (we’re working on that technology, though). Getting started requires a good deal of researching — you know, that thing you’re doing right now — and planning, followed by careful selection of both products and BBQ island materials. And that’s not even accounting for the back-and-forth with your contractor during the construction period, which can feel like a lifetime as you watch your outdoor kitchen come together bit by bit. Wouldn’t it be nice if there was a shortcut around the common headaches homeowners face on their journey to a better backyard?

    Actually, there is! Prefab outdoor kitchens are exactly what they sound like: grill islands that have already been partially built, finished, and paired with outdoor kitchen components in a single, easy-to-order package. This simple solution removes most of the planning and waiting, not to mention that it can be taken with you when you move. Sound too good to be true? See for yourself!

Benefits of Finished BBQ Grill Islands

  • Simple Ordering

    Forget the long hours of research or outright guesswork when gathering products and materials for your outdoor space — with outdoor kitchen kits, everything matches and everything fits. That means you can place a single order and be done.

  • Speedy Installation

    BBQ island kits are shipped in separate pieces but can generally be assembled with only a few tools in an afternoon. Certain brands may call for a contractor to be present during installation, but isn’t that worth the luxury of same-day grilling?

  • Yours for Life

    With BBQ grill islands, you don’t have to leave outdoor living behind when you move. Just enlist the help of a moving company to transport it whole to your home. Good luck doing that with an outdoor kitchen island built into a slab.

  • Value Purchase

    Looking for a catch? It certainly isn’t cost. The price range of prefab outdoor kitchens is similar to what you’d normally pay for a custom job in many locations, with the added benefit of not having to funnel the project through a contractor.

  • Weber Summit Grill Center Natural Gas Grill With Rotisserie, Sear Burner & Side Burner

    Item featured: Weber Summit Grill Center Natural Gas Grill With Rotisserie, Sear Burner & Side Burner

  • How to Install Finished BBQ Island Kits

    You didn’t think we’d tell you that you can assemble an outdoor kitchen kit in an afternoon and then not explain how, did you? Unfortunately, the degree of installation and assembly varies from model to model, but we can at least give you a general idea of what to expect when your BBQ island kit arrives.

    Unpacking

    Individual pieces of the island will arrive flat-packed, but don’t be fooled by how compact they come — those boxes are heavy. Make sure you have a friend or two ready to help move boxes and set up the outdoor kitchen kit. Bonus points if they bring a pallet jack! (Or you can just rent one for the day from a home-improvement store.) Before you start unboxing, take inventory of what you have to ensure all components and parts are present. Mis-shipments are rare, but you’d hate to waste half an afternoon on a project you can’t complete.

  • Weber Summit Grill Center Natural Gas Grill With Rotisserie, Sear Burner & Side Burner

    Item featured: Weber Summit Grill Center Natural Gas Grill With Rotisserie, Sear Burner & Side Burner

Now’s also the time to ensure you’re 100% settled on the installation site. We advise against trying to disassemble and reassemble your BBQ grill island elsewhere if you grow tired of it’s placement in your backyard — it’s technically possible but will be, as one of our experts so eloquently put it, “a righteous pain.” Mont Alpi and TYTUS do equip their outdoor kitchen kits with locking, heavy-duty caster wheels so you can relocate them without having to undo your handiwork, but it’s still best to be totally comfortable with where your island is going before you lift a finger.

  • Assembly

    Installation instructions differ depending on the BBQ grill island you select, so be sure to carefully read your owner’s manual before beginning assembly. What we can tell you is this: you’ll rarely need to have anything more than a screwdriver and a few drill bits to complete the assembly. You’ll likely have to bolt panels together, but any additional hardware (like self-tapping screws) should be included in the packaging.

    Once you’ve put the frame together, you and that buddy of yours will need to place appliances and components like doors and drawers into their respective cutouts. Next comes the countertop, then most of the hard work is done. If you chose a BBQ island kit with a natural gas grill, plan ahead and make sure you have a licensed plumber on standby to make the final connection to your fuel. Trying to DIY this final step can present a serious safety hazard and potentially void your warranty.

Still can’t believe it’s that easy? Check out this video to see how quickly the folks at Coyote were able to set up one of their BBQ grill islands.

You’re Done!

All told, installing a prefab outdoor kitchen requires only a few hours of your time and some basic know-how. It’s also much more palatable for homeowners who shudder at the thought of workers digging up their yard and traipsing around their property for weeks on end. It’s worth noting that outdoor kitchen kits are technically freestanding structures, whereas many custom islands are built into a concrete slab. This can be a huge benefit for homeowners who have strict HOA policies or local building codes that forbid backyard construction.

How Prefab Outdoor Kitchens Compare to Custom Outdoor Kitchens

At this point, we suspect your “too good to be true” sensors are going off. With the incredible convenience and numerous benefits of BBQ island kits, why would anyone ever go the traditional route and hire a contractor for weeks of building? There has to be something that pushes most homeowners to construct an outdoor kitchen from the ground up, right? Well, let’s check the tape!

  • Outdoor Kitchen Kits

    • Comparably priced
    • Rarely require a contractor
    • Components and materials are included in a single, finished package
    • Very limited customization
    • Installation takes an afternoon at most
    • Can be taken with you when you move
  • Custom Outdoor Kitchen Islands

    • Comparably priced
    • Almost always require a contractor
    • Components and materials must be ordered individually
    • Can be fully customized
    • Installation can take weeks
    • Can’t be taken with you when you move

Did something in that comparison chart stand out to you? Even with almost everything going in favor of prefab outdoor kitchen kits, it’s that little word — “custom” — that leads many homeowners to build from scratch instead. If you already have a dream outdoor kitchen design you won’t compromise on or just hate being boxed in (think of how those poor BBQ grill island components must feel!), then this single drawback might outweigh the many benefits.

  • Blaze BBQ Island With 32-Inch 4-Burner Propane Gas Grill & Power Burner

    Item featured: Blaze BBQ Island With 32-Inch 4-Burner Propane Gas Grill & Power Burner

  • Finished BBQ Grill Islands Can’t Be Fully Customized

    It should be mentioned that you do have some choices when it comes to prefab outdoor kitchens. Brands may offer a few different island lengths and more than one option for components, materials, colors, and fuel types. But, overall, you’re still playing by their rules, so don’t expect to totally personalize your space with a BBQ island kit (almost all of which have a linear layout, by the way).

    Are you really into a certain outdoor kitchen kit, but wish it had granite countertops instead of concrete? Too bad. Want to swap out that outdoor refrigerator for a side burner? No dice. In love with everything about the island except for the grill? Better look elsewhere. Contrast this with the experience you’d have building a custom outdoor kitchen, which puts you in the driver’s seat for every little decision. With a prefab outdoor kitchen, nearly all of those choices are already made for you.

  • Blaze BBQ Island With 32-Inch 4-Burner Propane Gas Grill & Power Burner

    Item featured: Mont Alpi 400 Deluxe 45 Degree Propane Gas Island Grill W/ Refrigerator Cabinet, Infrared Side Burner, & Rotisserie Kit

  • Finished Grill Islands are Comparably Priced

    We thought this point was worth explaining a little more in depth, mostly because you might find it hard to believe. Just like any other outdoor kitchen project, the cost of BBQ island kits varies depending on materials, brands, and components. Picking an island with a fridge and side burner instead of one with just a grill will obviously raise the price, as will purchasing a longer island that needs more materials to be completed.

    That being said, BBQ grill islands still generally fall within the same price range as their customized counterparts. Of course, the cost of an outdoor kitchen is terribly difficult to pin down — there are many variables like components, materials, and what contractors in your area charge. But at least you know what you’re getting into with prefab outdoor kitchens, which often end up costing less than what you’d pay for the individual components, materials, and labor that go into a from-scratch project. That’s a tremendous value considering convenience is also factored into the cost of a BBQ island kit.

    We want to make it clear that you’re not paying for junk, either. Most of our prefab outdoor kitchens include grills and storage components made from 304-grade stainless steel, the standard for outdoor durability. Every outdoor kitchen kit brand is highly reliable, but make sure to do your homework with our grill buying guides before purchasing an entire island. Be certain you like the grill, or you might dislike the entire island!

  • Blaze BBQ Island With 32-Inch 4-Burner Propane Gas Grill & Power Burner

    Item featured: Mont Alpi 400 Deluxe 45 Degree Propane Gas Island Grill W/ Refrigerator Cabinet, Infrared Side Burner, & Rotisserie Kit

Interested in learning more about BBQ island kits? Call our outdoor living experts at 1-877-743-2269, and they can point you in the right direction. But if you want to grace your backyard with something a little more personalized, visit the fine folks at our Free Outdoor Living Design Service. What they do might not be prefab, but it’s definitely fab!

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