Can You Use Kitchen Cabinets Outside? 7 Pros And Cons

outside kitchen cabinet

Many people love the idea of an outdoor kitchen, especially when you have enough space in your backyard. Almost every kitchen has cabinets, so it’s logical to wonder if you can use them outside as well.

Yes, you can use kitchen cabinets outside, but since it’ll be exposed to all the conditions of the outside environment, special attention must be paid to the materials.

Just as you can spec up your indoor kitchen cabinets, outdoor cabinets can be just as beautiful and functional. There are no limitations with design and functionality when it comes to outdoor kitchen cabinets. In my opinion, outdoor kitchen cabinets should be more durable and water-resistant than indoor cabinets since they will be constantly exposed to the outside elements.

Outdoor kitchens are becoming increasingly popular, as they allow you to enjoy the beauty of nature while cooking your favorite meals. In this article, we will discuss the pros and cons of using kitchen cabinets outside, as well as the best materials to use. We will also look at the best way to protect your investment and what to consider before making an outside kitchen cabinet.

What To Consider Before Making An Outside Kitchen Cabinet

While you can just go ahead and make a kitchen cabinet outside without planning, we recommend that you take the time to consider a few things first.

1. The Location Of Your Kitchen Cabinet

You need to consider the amount of sun and rain exposure, as well as whether or not you have a covered area. This is one of the major factors that will inform your decision to make an outdoor kitchen cabinet.

You wouldn’t want to have a cabinet in areas that are constantly wet or in direct sunlight as this will cause the material to warp and fade over time. Also, the cabinet shouldn’t obstruct any walkways or areas where kids play if you have kids.

Another thing to consider in terms of location is the proximity of your outdoor cabinets to your outdoor kitchen appliances. If you have a built-in grill, for example, you might want the cabinets to be close by so you can easily grab what you need while cooking.

2. The Material Of Your Kitchen Cabinet

As we mentioned before, the material of your outdoor kitchen cabinet is important because it will be constantly exposed to the elements. The materials should be very durable. If an inferior material is chosen, it will not be able to withstand the weather elements and, therefore, will not last as long.

Even if you have protection over the cabinet like a shed, it’s still important to choose a material that can withstand the elements because you never know when that protection might fail.

Some of the best materials for outdoor kitchen cabinets are stainless steel, aluminum, stone, concrete, wood, and polyethylene.

3. The Size Of Your Kitchen Cabinet

The size of the cabinet will be determined by the size of your outdoor kitchen, as well as how much storage you need. If you entertain often, you might want to go for a larger cabinet so that you have plenty of space to store all your cooking supplies.

On the other hand, if you have a smaller outdoor kitchen or you don’t entertain often, then a smaller cabinet might suffice. It all depends on your individual needs.

Pros Of Using Kitchen Cabinets Outside

Outside kitchen cabinets come with a lot of benefits. Here are some of the pros:

1. Outside Kitchen Cabinets Provide Extra Storage Space

If you entertain often or have a lot of cooking supplies, then outside kitchen cabinets can provide the extra storage space that you need. They are also great for storing things that you don’t use daily but still need to have within easy reach.

Another great thing about outside kitchen cabinets is that they can free up space in your indoor kitchen cabinets. This is especially beneficial if your indoor kitchen is small. This way you don’t have to stuff everything into your indoor kitchen cabinets and risk damaging them even if they won’t fit.

No one wants to be constantly running back and forth between the indoors and outdoors every time they need something when you are hosting a party or cooking a meal outside. With outside kitchen cabinets, everything you need is right there within easy reach.

2. Outside Kitchen Cabinets Provide Extra Counter Space

In addition to providing extra storage space, outside kitchen cabinets can also provide extra counter space. In addition to your main kitchen countertop, you can have an extra countertop on your outside kitchen cabinets. This is great for prep work when cooking outdoors.

It’s also great for setting up a buffet line or serving food. If you have a lot of friends and family over, then having extra counter space can be a lifesaver. It allows you to have everything within easy reach and makes serving food a breeze.

Extra counter space also comes in handy if you like to entertain. It provides a place for people to put their plates and glasses on while they mingle and socialize. It’s also a great place to set up a bar area if you like to serve drinks.

3. Outside Kitchen Cabinets Saves Time

You might be thinking how can outside kitchen cabinets save you time? Well, if you entertain often or have a lot of cooking supplies, then having everything within easy reach can save you a lot of time.

Imagine having to run back and forth between the indoors and outdoors every time you need something when you are hosting a party or cooking a meal outside. With outside kitchen cabinets, everything you need is right there within easy reach.

This can save you a lot of time and energy, which is especially beneficial if you are hosting a large party or gathering.

4. Outside Kitchen Cabinets Helps Keeps Your Things Free Of Dust

If you live in an area with a lot of dust or pollen, then having your things stored in the open can cause them to become covered in dust. The cabinet outside will provide you with a clean place to store your things and keep them free of dust.

5. Add To The Aesthetics Of Your Outdoor Kitchen

Kitchen cabinets are not hidden and are usually one of the first things you notice when you enter the kitchen. There are many different styles and designs of outside kitchen cabinets that can add to the aesthetics of your outdoor kitchen. Whatever design you want can be achieved with the right kitchen cabinets.

Cons Of Using Kitchen Cabinets Outside

There are also some potential drawbacks to using kitchen cabinets outside. Here are some of the cons:

1. It Needs To Be Protected From The Weather

One of the main drawbacks to using kitchen cabinets outside is that it needs to be protected from the weather. If you live in an area with a lot of rain or snow, then your kitchen cabinets will need to be made out of materials that can withstand the elements.

If there is no covering over the outside kitchen area, then the cabinets will need to be made out of weather-resistant materials. This includes materials like stainless steel or aluminum. The problem with this is it begins to rust over time. This means you also need to spend extra money to build a protective shelter over the cabinet.

2. Security Of Your Things

There is always the issue of security when you think of an outside kitchen cabinet. It will be difficult for someone to steal your installed kitchen cabinet but that cannot be said for other things you might store in it.

You will need to take measures to ensure the security of your things if you decide to use an outside kitchen cabinet. This includes adding locks to the cabinet doors.

You should also consider storing valuable items in a safe or inside the house rather than in an outside kitchen cabinet.

How To Maintain Outdoor Kitchen Cabinet

Like any other piece of furniture, you will need to maintain your outside kitchen cabinet to keep it in good condition. Here are some tips on how to do this:

1. Keep It Under A Protective Shelter

To help your outdoor kitchen cabinet last for a long time, it is important to install it under a protective shelter. Installing it in an open space without any sort of protection will cause it to be damaged by the environmental elements quickly. It’ll get beaten by the rain, when it’s snowing the cabinet will be constantly wet, and when the sun shines it’ll start to fade.

2. Clean It Regularly

Outside cabinets will easily get dirty because of the constant exposure to dust and pollen. So, you must clean it regularly. Wipe down the cabinet doors and drawers with a damp cloth regularly to remove any dirt or debris. If there are any tough stains, you can use a mild soap and water solution to remove them. If you damage your cabinet with abrasive materials, then you risk the cost of refacing your kitchen cabinet.

It is also important to keep your outdoor kitchen cabinet clean and free from food particles at all times to prevent cockroaches from inhabiting the kitchen cabinet.

3. Don’t Use Abrasive And Harsh Chemicals

When cleaning your outside kitchen cabinet, avoid using harsh chemicals and abrasive cleaners. These can damage the finish of the cabinet and make it more susceptible to dirt and stains. Instead, opt for gentle cleaning solutions that won’t damage the cabinet.

4. Don’t Use It As A Sitting Tool

Your outside kitchen cabinet is not a stool or a chair, so don’t use it as one. Sitting on top of the cabinet can damage the doors and drawers. If you sit on it, it might also cause the counter of the cabinet to break or bend if the weight is too much.

If you need extra seating in your outdoor kitchen, get some chairs or stools instead. If you

What To Consider When Choosing Outdoor Kitchen Cabinet Material

When deciding on what type of material to choose for an outdoor kitchen cabinet, consider the following factors:

1. The Climate In Your Area

One of the main factors to consider is the climate in your area. If you live in an area with extreme weather conditions, then you will need to choose a material that can withstand these conditions. For example, if you live in an area with a lot of rain, then you will need to choose a waterproof material.

Some materials like wood can be treated to make them more weather-resistant but this will add to the cost of the cabinet.

If you live in an area with moderate weather conditions, then you have more options when it comes to choosing a material for your outdoor kitchen cabinet.

2. Durability Of The Material

You cannot compromise on durability when it comes to choosing a material for an outdoor kitchen cabinet. The material should be able to withstand the outside conditions. Unlike indoor cabinets where most of the outside conditions such as rain storms, snow, and sun are not present, outdoor cabinets are constantly exposed to these conditions. So, the material should be able to withstand all of these without getting damaged.

3. Cost Of Material

The cost of the material is another important factor to consider. Your budget will determine what you can and cannot afford. Some materials like stainless steel are more expensive than others but they offer a higher level of durability.

You should also consider the cost of installation when deciding on material. Some materials like concrete need to be installed by a professional which will add to the cost.

4. Ease Of Maintenance

The material you choose should also be easy to maintain. Outdoor kitchen cabinets need to be cleaned regularly to remove dirt, dust, pollen, and stains. You don’t want to struggle in getting your kitchen cabinet clean and organized all year round.

5. Aesthetics

The final thing to consider is the aesthetics of the material. The material should be able to complement the style of your outdoor kitchen, grill, and countertop.

The Best Materials For Outside Kitchen Cabinets

There are a few different materials that you can choose for your outdoor kitchen cabinet. Here are a few materials that are popular for outdoor kitchen cabinets:

1. Stainless Steel

Stainless steel is a popular material for outdoor kitchen cabinets because it is very durable. It is also easy to clean and maintain. They come in different colors including chrome, bronze, and silver. The only downside is that it can be quite expensive.

2. Wood

Wood is another popular material for outdoor kitchen cabinets. It is less expensive than stainless steel and can be treated to make it more weather-resistant. If you want to maintain the natural appearance of outdoor spaces, wood is the best material for you. One downside is it will rot if it is not treated properly and exposed to prolonged moisture.

3. Concrete

Many people choose concrete for outdoor countertops and kitchen cabinets because it is very durable. It is also easy to clean and maintain. Comparing it to wood or metal, they will not warp or corrode when exposed to water. Because it is a porous material, you just have to make sure you seal it properly to protect it from moisture. The downside of concrete is that it can be quite expensive and it needs to be installed by a professional.

4. Polyethylene

Polyethylene is a type of plastic that is very popular for outdoor kitchen cabinets. It is less expensive than stainless steel or concrete and can be molded into different shapes and sizes. They are also waterproof and also come in different colors. The only downside is that they are not as durable as other materials and with time, they will break down.


Installing kitchen cabinets outside is not a new concept. People have been using them for a long time and you can do the same. When done right, they can offer a lot of benefits. Take all of the above factors into consideration to make sure you get the most out of your outdoor kitchen cabinets. Use the best material that fits your needs, budget, and style to create a beautiful and functional space. With a little bit of planning, you can create the perfect outdoor kitchen for your home. Thanks for reading. I hope this article was helpful.

David A. Morris

Home On Point is owned by David Morris. I am a real estate professional and a huge fan of beautiful homes. I like researching ways to keep homes shining at all times and I am excited to share them as I learn along.

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