One of the trends I’ve been seeing a lot in the last several years working in the outdoor/backyard design space has been the outdoor kitchen.
These have been around for a long time, of course, but with the rise of YouTube and readily available materials, more and more folks are DIYing it.
For those less versed in this space, you might wonder if you can build an outdoor kitchen using patio pavers, though. And if so, how, why, and how much?
Can You Use Pavers for Building an Outdoor Kitchen?
Patio pavers are a great material for building multiple parts of your outdoor kitchen. From the patio beneath the kitchen to the kitchen counter and more, patio pavers are a great solution for folks looking for a distinctive look and DIY projects.
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Why Use Pavers for Outdoor Kitchens?
Patio pavers are the perfect option for building an outdoor kitchen for many reasons.
They Create a Wide Variety of Options
Patio pavers come in a huge number of designs, colors, materials, and shapes, making them a perfect choice for your custom made outdoor kitchen.
With these various options, you have more design possibilities than with many other materials, making them the perfect choice for crafting a precise aesthetic.
They Come in Many Materials
Pavers also come in a wide range of materials that can improve the longevity of your outdoor kitchen space.
Typically, they come in concrete, stone, clay, brick, or travertine.
Pavers Are Easier to Work With For Some
If you’re going to DIY the project, you may also find that pavers are much easier to work with than some materials otherwise used to build outdoor kitchens.
They’re smaller and weigh less, there’s no pouring involved, and they’re adjustable, as needed, until you finalize them into position with adhesive, grout, cement, or some other “cementing” material.
Pavers Make the Kitchen Completely Customizable
Because you’re working with pieces of this size and nature, your kitchen is completely customizable.
That means you can form and reform your design to fit exactly where you need it all along the way.
This is especially helpful for small and/or awkward spaces where you’re building in the kitchen.
Types of Pavers for Outdoor Kitchen
As mentioned above, patio pavers come in many materials. These are the most common and beneficial to build with.
Brick pavers are exactly what they sound like: bricks!
They can be made of clay or concrete and aggregate and are usually dyed to look like traditional bricks.
They’re strong and stain-resistant and sealants can help prevent their color from fading.
Often the cheapest pavers available, concrete pavers are made from concrete mixed with aggregate.
They come in a wide range of colors and styles and many designs including interlocking patterns.
They have to be sealed to retain their color (else they stain very easily!).
They are also one of the strongest pavers out there and typically endure foul weather and high traffic the best of all materials.
The interlocking designs also are great for flooring in particular, because they allow for rainwater and spills to drain more easily than many other materials.
Natural Stone Pavers
Of all the types of pavers out there, natural stone are the most commonly found as fieldstone or flagstone pavers.
They do tend to be more expensive than brick and concrete pavers, however, so they’re not for everyone.
Certain types are better for various settings as well. For example, limestone pavers are one of the strongest options and will do well as edging and foundational pavers.
However, they’re not best as your flooring in the outdoor kitchen if it’s going to be a high traffic area. They break under pressure.
Travertine pavers are a type of thick stones that, though technically could be listed among stone pavers, are a bit unique.
They typically come in elegant designs, making them a great choice for aesthetic builds.
They’re also longer lasting than many other stone pavers and more durable against high traffic. However, they can fade or stain or erode in weather. Sealing them is recommended to help prevent this.
Clay pavers are hard-fired pavers that are long-lasting, impervious pavers to consider using in your outdoor kitchen.
The high temperature kilns used to make them fuse the clay particles together, making them super strong and durable.
This firing also creates the beautiful colors of the stones and helps to make them fade and stain resistant.
What Parts of an Outdoor Kitchen Can We Build with Pavers?
Many parts of the outdoor kitchen can be constructed using pavers. Depending on which pavers you use, even all parts could technically be made with them.
Having a built-in BBQ grill is a great addition to any outdoor kitchen. And the island where they reside can easily be made from most pavers.
Brick, concrete, and clay pavers can be used to build and complete the island, while stone and travertine pavers may be used to build this, but it will take many more pavers because of stacking.
Alternatively, you can build the island with brick or concrete, and finish the island with the tiles.
Here are some tutorials on building them.
- DIY Outdoor Kitchen Build
- How to Make a Stone BBQ Island on a Budget
- How to Build a Beautiful Grill Surround with Pavers
Pavers make for attractive, durable countertops for your outdoor kitchen.
If you already have a patio made of pavers, you’re all set on that kitchen floor!
If not, though, you can find some amazing online tutorials for how to construct the perfect patio floor for your outdoor kitchen.
Be sure to include any details in your tutorial search, like the types of pavers you want to use, or how to build a patio by yourself.
Here are some tutorials to get you started.
- How to Build a Patio All By Yourself
- How to Install Concrete Pavers
- DIY Concrete Paver Patio
- DIY Backyard Patio Makeover on a Budget
How to Build an Outdoor Kitchen With Pavers?
There are many different ways to build outdoor kitchens with pavers.
Here are a few basic things to consider as you decide on your plan, though, to help you get started.
- Decide how much space you have for building your outdoor kitchen. They are not one-size fits all models, but rather fully customizable to ensure you have exactly what you want and need in the right size space.
- Determine what components you want in your kitchen. Grill island only? Kitchen counters with storage? An outdoor refrigerator? Do you want a sink? Or how about a dining area?
- Determine the type of pavers you want to use. I’d recommend looking through some tutorials first to learn the skill level required for the different types of pavers you’re considering and make decisions from there.
- Should you hire a professional instead of DIYing it yourself? Do you have the time, the skills, and the physical strength required to build the patio, the counters, the grill island, and everything else you want installed?
- Understand your budget. Do you have the money to build the full kitchen now, or do you need to build it in stages? Do you want to get a short-term loan to finish it all now, or do you want to pay cash now for all materials and labor?
After you’ve made the decisions, you’ve got to get the process started.
If you’re hiring someone, look for “outdoor kitchen experts” in your area or professional contractors who work on residential projects.
If you’re going to DIY it, be sure to:
- Pick a date for building
- Recruit any help you’ll need along the way
- Have your building plan chosen and ready before the big day
- Purchase all supplies ahead of time (stick to your budget!)
- Leave some room in the budget for things that pop up as you build (things break and other things are forgotten or lost all the time!)
- Gather your supplies together that morning
- Protect any dry concrete mix from water until you’re ready to mix and pour
- Drink plenty of water and enjoy some food while you work – you’re burning calories out there!
- Build or refinish the patio first before beginning any other portions of the project
Here’s a great list of 21 different outdoor kitchen design ideas that might come in handy just about now.
Ideas for Your Outdoor Kitchen Using Pavers
There are literally thousands of ideas out there, just waiting for you to find them!
If you know of any particular styles, paver types, or details you already love, plug those keywords into your search on either site to see a more narrowed down list of ideas.
Outdoor Kitchen FAQs
Can you build an outdoor kitchen on top of pavers?
You can absolutely build yourself a new outdoor kitchen on top of an older paver patio.
The key is making sure that the patio is level. If it’s not, you’ll need to refinish any portions that would be beneath the kitchen. An uneven surface can cause issues later on.
Can you build a BBQ Island on top of pavers?
Yes! A BBQ island can easily be added to an existing patio. Or, if you don’t have or don’t want a full patio, you can lay out new pavers strictly as the “foundation” for your BBQ island.
How do you secure an outdoor kitchen island BBQ module to patio paver?
You don’t actually have to secure a BBQ island module to the patio pavers beneath. The modules are designed to safely function as an add-on.However, if you would like to secure them together, you can do so with SRW A28 Solvent-Based Adhesive. This is the best option for this kind of outdoor adhesive.