The Best Outdoor Kitchen Cabinet Materials & Items You Need

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The Best Outdoor Kitchen Cabinet Materials & Items You Need

When choosing kitchen cabinets for indoor space, look at their storage space and design. Cabinets inside the kitchen usually last 15-20 years before you need to get new ones, fix them up, or change their look. So, you don’t have to worry too much about how long they will last.

But for cabinets outside, their durability matters a lot when you decide. They must hold up well outdoors, especially in harsh weather like rain and snow. So, picking the right type of material for outdoor kitchen cabinets is key to using them for a long time.

Table of Contents

Best Materials for Outdoor Kitchen Cabinets


Masonry outdoor kitchen cabinet

Masonry cabinetry uses a metal frame or concrete blocks covered with stucco, decorative stone, or brick. It offers a natural look and unique aesthetic to outdoor kitchens, often with a built-in design. You can pick materials balanced with your home’s exterior or nearby features, like a patio or rock wall.

Masonry cabinet structures are known for their durability and ability to withstand various climates and weather conditions.

Relatively, there are some drawbacks. Masonry outdoor kitchen cabinets may require more time to design and are more expensive to install. Also, adding accessories to them can take a lot of work.

Stainless Steel

Stainless steel kitchen cabinets are a top choice for outdoor cooking areas. Their main advantage is durability, especially those made from high-quality stainless steel.

Rust is a big concern for steel cabinets outdoors. A powder-coated finish adds extra rust protection. For outdoor kitchen stainless steel cabinets, grade 304 stands out as the best option, especially when they lack a protective powder coating. You will benefit from its excellent resistance to rust and corrosion.

The steel’s thickness in the cabinets is also crucial. It’s measured in gauges, and a lower gauge number means thicker steel, so the cabinet is stronger. Look for cabinets in the 16-20 gauge range.

Stainless Steel outdoor kitchen cabinet

The craftsmanship is another key aspect. Choose cabinets with sturdy frames and welded corners to ensure they last.

Stainless steel’s design flexibility also makes it suitable for outdoor kitchens. The powder coating not only stops rust but allows for various decorative finishes, such as solid colors, patterns, and even a wood-like appearance.

The steel look blends well with outdoor kitchen appliances, offering a modern and stylish look.

Marine-Grade Aluminum

Marine-Grade Aluminum outdoor kitchen cabinet

Marine-grade aluminum is a good choice for cabinet material, especially because it does not easily corrode. That’s why it’s ideal for marine use.

Outdoor marine-grade aluminum kitchen cabinets have a thick build, which keeps them stable. They weigh less than steel cabinets.

Such cabinets can also have a powder coat, adding more years to their use. Marine-grade aluminum kitchen cabinets will last a long time.

They offer a good option besides stainless steel cabinets. You can pick different finishes and add extras like slide-out drawers and places to hang things.


HDPE outdoor kitchen cabinet

HDPE, or high-density polyethylene, is weather-resistant for outdoor kitchen cabinets. It is available in many colors and unique finish styles. It doesn’t get damaged by rust, corrosion, rotting, or other environmental harm.

HDPE is strong for how much it weighs, making it an excellent material for outdoor kitchens because it lasts a long time. It does not hold onto most chemicals and solvents so that it won’t pick up oils or grease from cooking.

The best part is that HDPE outdoor kitchen cabinets are very easy to keep clean. Since HDPE does not let water through, you can use a hose or power washer on them without worry.

The robust and man-made resin is used in various items, like outdoor furniture, boat decks, and kitchen cabinets.

However, HDPE can be affected by high heat. Like wood, HDPE cabinets need a protective jacket for your grill insert.


PVC outdoor kitchen cabinet

PVC, or polyvinyl chloride, represents a newer choice among materials for outdoor kitchen cabinets. The synthetic polymer has become one of the most common plastic types.

Good reasons for its use: PVC is totally weatherproof and does not rust or stain. Like aluminum, PVC is often chosen near water because of its durability.

However, lower-cost PVC or vinyl cabinets might lose color due to long-time exposure to the sun’s UV rays and can change shape with big temperature changes. This is why choosing high-quality PVC cabinets is advisable for your outdoor kitchen.

PVC kitchen cabinets are also very easy to clean and maintain. Being totally waterproof, a quick wash with a hose or pressure washer is all you need to keep them looking new.

What You Should Have in Your Outdoor Kitchen Cabinets

When cooking outside, it’s crucial to minimize trips to the indoor kitchen without having too many duplicate items in both spaces. Here are five key items to include in your outdoor kitchen.

High-Quality Grill

An outdoor kitchen isn’t complete without a grill. It’s essential for preparing a wide range of meals, and a high-quality grill helps you cook more and better.

Consider getting a grill with added features like burners for boiling water or a rotisserie attachment for more cooking options. For those who love the taste of charred meat, a charcoal grill might be ideal. And if you’re serious about meats, consider adding a smoker for that extra flavor and tenderness.

bbq grill for outdoor

Grilling Tools and Utensils

Keeping your tools for grilling outside saves you many trips to the indoor kitchen for things you might forget. You should have:

Grilling Tools and Utensils
  • At least two metal spatulas, so turning food over becomes easy.
  • A fork for grilling helps with handling big pieces of meat.
  • Metal tongs give you a good grip on smaller items.
  • Brushes for putting sauce or marinade on food evenly.
  • Skewers, perfect for making kabobs or cooking many small pieces together.


Choose dishes that won’t break for outdoor meals. Such dishes need to be stronger than those used inside because of daily use. If kids take their plates around the yard, you need something tough enough if they leave it in the grass.

Dishes with fun designs can help you tell them apart from the ones you use inside.

Garbage Cans

You should have at least one garbage can and a recycling bin for your outdoor kitchen. Using just a trash bag is not the best idea. Animals might get into it, or the bag could tear.

A solid trash can offers more protection, and you can empty it when it’s full. Try to find cans that go well with your outdoor area’s look to make everything look united.

Ice Chests

ice chest for outdoor cabinet

Outdoor kitchen areas often become the main spot for parties, and a successful party needs plenty of ice. Using ice chests for drinks lets your guests serve themselves without waiting for you to offer.

Have enough ice chests to place one on each side of your patio or entertainment area. Choose ice chests with drain spouts to make cleaning up easier after your guests leave.


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