Skip to content


Your cart is empty

Article: Your Guide to Designing an Outdoor Kitchen for Small Spaces

Your Guide to Designing an Outdoor Kitchen for Small Spaces

Your Guide to Designing an Outdoor Kitchen for Small Spaces

Backyard barbecues are a quintessential part of Australian life. But what if your outdoor space feels more like a postage stamp than a sprawling patio? 

What if your balcony is tight and cozy, or your deck is more walkway than party way?

Fear not! With a touch of strategic planning and some clever design tricks, you can transform even the most compact area into a functional and stylish outdoor kitchen.

In the realm of outdoor living, size should never inhibit your dreams of creating a luxurious culinary oasis right in your backyard. Embracing ingenuity and strategic design, you can transform even the most modest outdoor areas into inviting hubs for dining, entertaining, and making cherished memories. Are you ready to embark on this journey of culinary creativity for your pint sized area? Let's dive into the world of compact outdoor kitchens and discover how to turn your space constraints into assets. This guide will equip you with the knowledge and inspiration to create your very own miniature outdoor kitchen

Measure your space 

In the quest to create your dream outdoor kitchen, one crucial step stands paramount: measuring up your space. Before delving into design inspirations and layout decisions, it's imperative to understand the dimensions and contours of your outdoor area. Armed with a measuring tape and a keen eye for detail, take stock of the available space, noting any existing structures or potential obstacles.  Dont forget to measure where your services are located, such as power points, gas outlet or water for sinks. Accurate measurements serve as the foundation for crafting a functional and aesthetically pleasing outdoor kitchen. And if you have limited space then every millimeter is important, whether it's determining the perfect placement for your grill or ensuring seamless traffic flow around your area.

Strategic Layouts for Efficiency and Elegance

Gone are the days when outdoor kitchens were solely reserved for vast expanses of land. Today, we embrace the mantra of 'less is more' and leverage intelligent layouts to optimize every inch of available space

The Galley Layout is a timeless arrangement, with all components aligned along a single wall, it epitomizes efficiency. When you picture the layout of your alfresco area, picture your  BBQ, counter top, and storage units neatly arranged in a line for a seamless workflow.

For balconies, picture the layout in a straight line along one of the walls. Also Consider shade, shelter and warmth as to where it is bests located.  Even in the narrowest of spaces you can arrange your outdoor kitchen equipment in the galley layout configuration, as there is no need for bulky corner units or kitchen islands. 

For example, look at the outdoor kitchen below. It features a 4 burner BBQ and a drink cooler. It also has an added side shelf to maximize the workbench. All this in less than 2m of space.

Stainless steel BBQ and drinks cooler

Furniture that Multitasks

In a small outdoor kitchen, every piece of furniture must pull double duty, seamlessly blending functionality with style. Try some of the following tips to help keep you space useful, practical and make the most of the limited space.

  • Ottomans with Storage: Furniture with built in storage is one of the most functional ways to maximize your space and there are plenty of Ottoman type seats with inbuilt storage included. These versatile pieces offer additional seating for guests while discreetly concealing outdoor essentials like cushions, throws, or grilling tools.
  • Folding Tables: Invest in a sturdy folding table that effortlessly expands to accommodate gatherings and then can be easily put away when not in use, optimizing your space on your veranda, patio, deck or balcony.
  • Bar Seating with Storage: Elevate your outdoor experience with bar stools, again, make the most of every piece of furniture by selecting bar stools featuring built-in storage compartments. This can help keep essential items within arm's reach without cluttering precious floor space or requiring additional cupboards.

Essential Ingredients for Small-Space Outdoor Kitchens

Curating the perfect outdoor kitchen for your compact space requires thoughtful selection of essential elements that prioritize functionality without sacrificing style.

Think about what equipment and accessories you really need and cull the rest. Are you happy with just a BBQ and some side cabinets, or if you have slightly more space will a beverage cooler fit?

  • Compact Grill:¬†Not every alfresco area requires a massive BBQ. Think of how often and how many people you will be catering for, and select a BBQ that fits your needs. Choose a BBQ grill that seamlessly integrates into your space, offering optimal functionality without being to large for you area. Look for clever features like side shelves for additional prep space and consider built-in options for streamlined elegance.

  • Under counter Refrigerator: Keep beverages and ingredients cool without using precious counter top real estate. A compact under counter refrigerator is the epitome of convenience in a small outdoor kitchen.

  • Sink with Folding Tap: Embrace efficiency with a small sink boasting a folding Tap, and add a cover over your sink so the area doubles up as extra preparation area on your bench top. From food prep to cleanup, this space-saving solution ensures every task is accomplished with ease, leaving you more time to savor the moment and uses all the available space.

Experience Inspiration: Cronin Pre-designed packages

Sometimes its hard to picture what is possible for your outdoor kitchen. With all the different appliances and options available, visualizing what is possible can be a challenge. That is why Cronin Alfresco has come up with a range of compact, pre-designed outdoor kitchens, perfect for the outdoor area that has limited space. From "The Tennyson", with 4 burner BBQ and storage cabinets, to "The Magil, that includes a sink and under bench Beveridge cooler, the pre-designed outdoor kitchen range is compact but packed full of features. See the full list HERE

Crafting Your Culinary Haven

Armed with these strategic insights and a vision for maximizing your small outdoor space, you're poised to embark on a transformative journey. Say goodbye to limitations and hello to endless possibilities as you design an outdoor kitchen that reflects your style, facilitates your culinary aspirations, and beckons loved ones to gather and celebrate life's moments

At Cronin Alfresco, we specialize in transforming outdoor spaces, no matter their size, into havens of culinary delight. Explore our collection online or schedule a consultation with our design experts today, and let us help you craft the outdoor kitchen of your dreams. With innovation, expertise, and a touch of creativity, your small space can become the ultimate destination for alfresco dining and entertaining.

For more information contact Cronin Alfresco to learn more about our stainless steel modular cabinets and get started on your dream outdoor space today.







Author - Shaun O.

Shaun is the Managing Director of Cronin Alfresco and Cronin Fabrication, with over 20 years of experience in the sheet metal industry. His expertise in the field has helped Cronin Fabrication become a leading provider of sheet metal fabrication services and wire products in Adelaide.Under his leadership, Cronin Alfresco has also established itself as a trusted designer and provider of high-quality alfresco kitchens. 

Read more

Creating a Seamless Indoor-Outdoor Living Space with a Stainless Steel Outdoor Kitchen
outdoor kitchen

Creating a Seamless Indoor-Outdoor Living Space with a Stainless Steel Outdoor Kitchen

Outdoor kitchens are becoming increasingly popular in Australia, and for good reason. Not only do they offer the convenience of having all your cooking needs in one place, but they also create a se...

Read more