Outdoor Kitchen Island with Concrete Countertop

A sturdy cooking center turns a plain barbecue area into a stylish outdoor kitchen.

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Built with a metal frame, slate tile sides and a concrete countertop, this outdoor cooking center will stand the test of time.

Materials and Tools:
layout and marking tools - tape measure, square, level, pencil and chalk line
reciprocating saw
metal snips
screw gun
power actuated fastener
tile saw
tile installation tools
circular saw
concrete and concrete finishing tools
masonry drill
shots and pins for concrete fastening
self-drilling framing screws
board screws
three 3-5/8" metal track
twelve 3-5/8" x 8’ metal studs
six sheets cement backerboard
four sheets 5/8" CDX plywood
three pieces of 2x4x8 pressure-treated lumber
40 square feet of gauged slate tile
mortar
wire reinforcing
rebar
#15 building paper

Figure A

Steps:

1. Layout barbecue island dimensions on your patio or deck.

2. Bolt down the treated 2x4s to the surface to serve as a bottom plate.

3. Using metal stud and track, frame barbecue island to desired dimensions on top of treated lumber. Take careful consideration when measuring the opening for your barbecue unit.

Figure B

4. Install plywood on the front and exposed ends of the frame.

5. Lay plywood on the top with a 1/4-inch overhang to accommodate the backerboard and tile that will go on the front and sides.

6. Build a form for the concrete countertop by attaching a 1-1/2" ledger around all sides of the top.

7. Lay building paper, rebar and wire reinforcing within one inch of the form’s edges. Use wire to attach the pieces together. Spray the edges of the form with cooking spray. This will help prevent the concrete from sticking to the form.

Figure C

8. Mix cement and pour inside the form, make sure the mix is firmly spread into the corners. Screed, level and trowel smooth. Allow the concrete to sit at least overnight. It may take a few days to completely cure.

9. Attach cement backerboard on vertical surfaces for tile prep.

Figure D

10. Spread mortar on the backerboard and adhere slate tile with tight joints, no grout required.

11. When concrete is completely cured, remove ledger.

12. Set in barbecue unit and enjoy.

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