Anyone who's eaten barbecue fresh off the grill knows the allure of outdoor cooking. Everything seems to taste better that way, too. Add the advantage of keeping all the heat, grease and humidity that comes with cooking outside your home, and the prospect of an open air kitchen seems downright mouthwatering.
Elaborate outdoor kitchens and entertainment areas can be big-ticket items, though. A comprehensive package including luxuries like a refrigerator, stereo, cooking island and ritzy grilling equipment can carry a price tag of more than $35,000, but you don't have to be rich to have all the tools to cook outdoors. A grill with a large prep counter setup can cost as little as $3,000, and you can pick up an all-weather stainless steel refrigerator for around $500.