When planning your dream outdoor kitchen, choosing your countertop plays an important part in its design. You need to select a durable material as not doing so basically means pouring money down the drain.
The kitchen countertop you pick should be able to stand up to the elements as it will be subjected to changing weather conditions. There are many materials to consider; each with its advantages and disadvantages.
In this post, we examine the most suitable materials for outdoor kitchen countertops to help you select one that suits your lifestyle and budget.
Top 5 Materials for Outdoor Kitchen Countertops
Get your backyard makeover started by picking the best outdoor kitchen countertop material.
Outdoor granite countertops perform well, as they can withstand changing temperatures. So you don’t need to worry about hot pots or pans damaging the stone. Moreover, when sealed properly, there’s no need to fear mildew, mould, or stains, so it will withstand all the fancy drinks and barbecue sauces amidst your outdoor entertaining and dining.
This natural stone is available in a wide variety of colours and graining patterns. This allows it to work equally well in traditional or contemporary designs.
Homeowners can also choose from a wide range of finishes. Regardless of the style you choose, you won’t have to worry about its colour or finish fading under the sun. However, sunlight heats up darker stones so it’s best to go with lighter colours outdoors, especially if there is no shade over the countertop.
Porcelain is a durable, non-porous stone, making it a suitable option for outdoor kitchen countertop applications. This also means you don’t have to worry about spills and food prep staining the countertop, or having it sealed annually to maintain its beauty and durability. Porcelain countertops are also resistant to cold and heat so changing temperatures won’t damage your outdoor kitchen countertop. Porcelain is however susceptible to scratching and chipping, so be careful not to drop heavy objects on it or drag anything over its work surface.
Similar to granite, porcelain slabs are also available in a wide range of colours, patterns, and finishes, allowing them to work flawlessly in modern, contemporary, and traditional outdoor kitchens.
Moreover, manufacturers can produce porcelain to mimic the appearance of natural stone. So, you can get an outdoor kitchen countertop that offers the sophistication of natural stone at a fraction of the cost.
Quartzite is a natural stone that is typically confused with quartz, but the latter is an artificial product. Quartzite countertops are sturdy and the surface colour doesn’t fade under direct sunlight, making them suitable for outdoor applications. However, they need to be sealed regularly to ensure the surface isn’t damaged by hot pots, pans, or liquid spills. Note: it’s still best to use trivets and coasters to protect their beauty.
You can find quartzite countertops with veining patterns similar to marble at a fraction of the cost. This makes it suitable for homeowners on a budget.
Also, make sure you use cutting boards and do not use the surface to dice, cut, or chop vegetables or meat as this can destroy the sealing. With quartzite, there is no need to use special cleaners as water and mild liquid soap are enough to keep the surface clean.
Concrete is a customizable and flexible countertop option for outdoor applications. It offers a uniform and sleek appearance that attracts many modern and contemporary design lovers. There are virtually limitless colour options, and you can integrate features like a draining board too.
However, concrete may show signs of wear and tear from regular use and the colour can fade with exposure to sunlight. Furthermore, it requires expert installation to prevent the stone from breaking or cracking. While a stylish addition, it requires a fair bit of maintenance and needs to be sealed periodically.
Slate is one of the strongest materials suitable for outdoor applications, but its sturdiness, along with other aspects of the stone, can vary between slabs. Some are harder and denser and can withstand stains from spills and usage. However, more porous varieties may scratch, stain, and crack easily. Basic maintenance includes an annual sealant.
While a tough material, slate is softer than other natural stones, making it prone to chipping and scratching. When dealing with scratches on a kitchen countertop, you can use sandpaper to lightly remove visible ones. However, like granite, slate is heat-resistant so you can place hot pots and pans on it without worrying.
With their ability to withstand changing temperatures and meet the needs of an outdoor kitchen countertop, these are some of your best options. However, it’s worth investing in shade to protect the material and retain its beauty. Hopefully, this has given you enough ideas for your outdoor kitchen space to ensure you choose the best option for your home.