5 Rustic Outdoor Kitchens That Will Leave You Jonesing for a Rugged Backyard Retreat

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Image Credit: Paul Anderson for Hunker

If there's one space that rustic style feels completely at home in, it's an outdoor kitchen. After all, an area inherently inspired by nature makes an ideal fit for wood finishes, industrial materials, and weathered details — all key components of the warm and cozy aesthetic. If you're thinking that "worn and weathered" isn't exactly your thing, don't be so quick to discount a rustic outdoor cook space.

The woodsy look often works better in tandem with other design styles — think modern, minimalist, or even Scandinavian. Whether you're jonesing for a rugged outdoor retreat, or an earthy cook space with subtle undertones, we've rounded up five rustic outdoor kitchens that will have you ready to commune with nature in no time.

1. Wood, wood, and more wood.

This jaw-dropping rustic outdoor kitchen by Pearson Design Group hones in on the aesthetic's most quintessential material: wood, of course. Still, the overall look feels far from a one trick pony. To recreate this culinary dream, add a few modern elements, like bar stools and a concrete countertop, to keep the look feeling fresh with a hint of contrast.

2. Balance rustic materials with modern amenities.

This rustic outdoor kitchen looks and feels perfectly balanced thanks to top of the line, modern appliances — including a beer tap, high-end grill, and even a ceramic cooker and smoker — to offset the rough textures. The chopped wood is a nice final touch to complete the woodsy culinary station.

3. Add an island.

This open-air kitchen shared by Leonie Williams oozes rustic charm thanks to a hefty, freestanding wood island and woven textures used throughout the space. Opt to paint the cabinets a casual slate blue to create contrast in a sea of wood materials.

4. Use color to anchor your space.

Image Credit: Paul Anderson for Hunker

Design rules apply to rustic outdoor kitchens as well, which means the right colors can make or break your open-air space. Consider adding hues seen in nature that will easily fit it with the warm wood tones used throughout. We love the combination of the orange corrugated ceiling and the green-painted countertop and backsplash that was used in this desert escape.

5. Keep it minimal.

If you ask us, rustic minimalism is a match made in design heaven, and this outdoor kitchen from Odoo Project is no exception. To bring this look into your home, pair unfinished wood with stainless steel fixtures and black trim for a result that feels modern, yet far from fussy.


Caitlin is the former social media manager and staff writer of TheEverygirl.com in Chicago, now working as a freelance writer from her laptop in New Zealand. She loves soulful, collected interior design that feels like a warm hug, English Breakfast tea, and trips to the theatre.

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