Backyard grilling has never been the same since kitchens were moved outdoors. This brings us to one of our favorite items in an outdoor kitchen – countertops. When it comes to outdoor kitchens, this is one item that might not always stand out like a showy mantelpiece, but if it isn’t there, the room is quite incomplete, wouldn’t you agree?
When done right, it is not just functional but can become the focal point of your kitchen. So, when it’s such an intrinsic part of your indoor kitchen, there’s really no reason why you shouldn’t include it in your outdoor kitchen as well.
Having a countertop lets you prep, cook, and even eat your meals outdoors, but you need to put some thought into what you need before just selecting one. We help you choose the best material for your outdoor kitchen countertop.
Best Outdoor Kitchen Countertops Compared
Quartz: Given that quartz resists staining and doesn’t need sealing, polish, or buffing, One would think an engineered stone would be an ideal and logical choice for an outdoor kitchen.
Quartz is non-porous, extremely sturdy, requires minimum maintenance, and can handle spills, scratches, and stains when the proper cleaning care is maintained. Even better, it comes in various colors, which are quite uniform in pattern and texture compared to other natural stones.
Unfortunately, Quartz countertops are sensitive to UV rays and extreme temperatures, making it a poor choice for outdoor kitchens.
Granite: This is still one of the most popular options for indoor kitchens. But when you consider that it’s stain, heat, scratch, and cut resistant, it’s easy to see where the appeal lies and why many people opt for granite for their outdoor kitchen. While it does work for outdoor kitchens, remember that granite differs in hardness and porosity.
You also need to be sure to reseal your granite every year, especially if it is used in an outdoor kitchen. As for colors, granite might have differences in patterns and appearances, as it is a natural stone. So while it’s not easy to get granite that looks absolutely consistent, the character of each slab makes it unique and stunning.
To get it to look as consistent as possible, pick granite slabs that are taken from the same quarry. Working with a granite countertop fabrication company that specializes in outdoor countertops can save you a lot of time and money by helping you choose the right type of granite that will properly withstand the elements.
Some stones may deteriorate in the sun’s UV rays or formulate different forms of stains such as rust or elemental stains.
Marble: As far as aesthetics go, marble is classic and timeless, and you’d be hard pressed to find a better-looking material. But it’s not the most versatile or hardy of stones, so an outdoor kitchen that is open to the elements or used roughly might not be the right space for marble.
Apart from being a softer material, marble is more prone to scratches, dents, stains, etching, and heat, if not cared for properly. You can put this down to the fact that marble is calcium carbonate.
When any acidic items like tomato, wine, or lime juice fall on it, it eats into it, leaving behind a haze or etching, an issue that you don’t have to worry about with other natural stones.
Soapstone: Heat and stain-resistant, soapstone brings to mind a rustic, charming appeal that only this muted metamorphic rock can impart. Mostly available in bluish-gray, green-gray, gray, white, or soft black that is often veined or speckled, soapstone is non-porous, dense, and can resist bacteria and chemicals quite easily.
As far as thermal conductivity is concerned, it beats both granite and marble. But while soapstone has its pros, it also has its share of disadvantages. For one, its high-talc content makes it prone to scratches. This is not a low-maintenance material, so be prepared to spend time and effort on its upkeep, which includes applying mineral or walnut oil to it once or twice a month.
Its surfaces also naturally darken over time, so do not expect your soapstone countertop to look exactly as it did when you bought it as the years go by.
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To pick the best material for your outdoor kitchen countertop, you have to first identify how much you plan to use your kitchen and how roughly or gently you will use it. Then you have to see how your countertop fits in with your outdoor kitchen’s overall design and layout.
Choosing a countertop is not a decision that can be made in isolation, and the right team of experts will be able to help you narrow down your list to know exactly what you need.
At GranitePro, we look at all aspects right down to the material, finish, and seams of your countertop to ensure it fits your space and lifestyle perfectly.
Contact us today to get the correct guidance on how to simplify your search and achieve incredible functionality and aesthetics with the right outdoor kitchen countertop.