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DIY Outdoor Bar: Popular How-To Guides, Kits, & 10 Unique Ideas

By Gabrielle Desmarais

January 18, 2023

If you’re in the midst of a backyard makeover… You might be interested in building a DIY outdoor bar for your next project.

It’s a fantastic idea!

If hosting friends and family is one of your favorite things to do… An outdoor bar will make the process far easier!

All of your cocktail supplies can remain right outside, and at the ready! Plus, you’ll have a bar top for all your guests to sit at.

Depending on your desire and experience-level… There are a wide variety of DIY outdoor bar ideas and plans to consider.

So in this article, we’ll go through some of the most popular how-to guides, kits, and ideas! There’s a lot to cover, so let’s not delay.

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outdoor bar seating at outdoor kitchen under pergola

Popular DIY Outdoor Bar Ideas

While it may not seem like it at first… Building an outdoor patio bar is an ambitious project!

As with any DIY project, you’ll need to find an option that matches your skill level.

So if you want to go it alone… Let’s review a few options that might suit your desires.

NOTE: We do not recommend wood as a good bar material. Rot and insect damage are just a couple of the abundant problems with using wood outdoors. Know that even though we’re showcasing DIY guides that use wood… They’re not an option designed to last for years!

Want to bring your idea to life?

Use our free 3D design tool to bring the outdoor kitchen of your dreams to reality in just a few minutes.

Wooden Bar Cart

If you’re wanting to put your woodworking skills to the test… Here’s a great outdoor bar cart tutorial to consider!

This is a simple DIY outdoor portable bar with two shelves. 

The only tools you’ll need for this project are a miter saw, drill jig, power drill, screwdriver, and sander. 

For details, refer to the complete DIY outdoor bar plan from Kreg’s website

But if you’re ready to graduate to a full-on DIY backyard bar… You’ll want to take a look at the next idea.

DIY Pallet Bar

It doesn’t get any simpler (or cheaper) than this project!

Most of the time, you can find used wood pallets for free… Which makes this idea quite low-stakes!

And if you’d like, this option could be easily modified to look like a tiki bar. Just cover it with a thatched roof!

Just keep in mind that this isn’t the most sturdy option out there. If you want to build an outdoor bar to last the long haul… You’ll want to seek another option. (We’ll discuss later!)

If you’re not dissuaded…

Watch the video for the step by step guide on this easy outdoor bar idea… And if it’s not for you, let’s look at another option.

Murphy Bar

Want to know how to build a wooden outdoor bar… But looking for something a little more sophisticated?

This Murphy bar is mounted to an exterior wall of your home… And pulls down to create a bar table/bar top that can be stowed away at any time!

The skill level required of this project is cranked up quite a bit… So take a close look at the video for details.

And just a fun design tip… Consider installing a bottle opener on the side for convenience!

Still not finding a homemade outdoor bar that sparks inspiration?

DIY Outdoor Bar Kits

If so… There are a couple outdoor bar kits we’d like to mention.

These will give you the complete experience of what a home bar can provide… Without the confusion of full DIY!

Newage Outdoor Cabinets

While Newage is primarily known for their outdoor kitchen cabinets… There are options to create your own bar island, too!

If you’re not familiar with Newage… They offer modular island cabinets you’ll assemble yourself. 

Essentially, you will choose the individual units you want to create your own layout. 

It’s this modularity that allows you to create a bar island with items from the Newage catalog!

You can opt for aluminum or stainless steel cabinets with plenty of storage… And they offer modules with a sink as well. 

However, there are a couple caveats here! 

Know that Newage cabinet sets do not come with the countertop, so you’ll have to purchase those separately. 

Additionally, only counter height islands are offered. Newage does offer an extended bar shelf you can buy separately… But if you want a true bar height option, you’ll want to seek other options!

a newage stainless steel cabinet system under a pergola

Urban Bonfire Classics

Like Newage… Urban Bonfire is a brand well-known for their outdoor kitchen cabinets

However, there are some differences! 

For one, Urban Bonfire offers cabinets made only from marine-grade aluminum with a proprietary powder-coated finish. 

You’ll also find a few options for pre-designed kits on their website. Celeste, Equinox, and Lagoon are a few layouts to consider. 

Urban Bonfire’s pre-designed layouts will include doors, open shelf storage, sinks, or refrigerators… Depending on the option you choose. 

If you don’t see an option you like… Urban Bonfire also provides custom islands! You’ll have to work with them directly to see exactly what is possible. 

Note that Urban Bonfire’s bar islands will be at the same height as their grill islands. So if you want your bar island to sit higher… Again, you’ll need to reach out to Urban Bonfire to see if they can customize this for you.

Still haven’t found the right match? Perhaps you’re interested in a more traditional aesthetic…

urban bonfire logo

Taverns-To-Go DIY Bar Outdoor

If you’re seeking a covered outdoor bar, Taverns-To-Go, well… Has you covered!

They offer wooden backyard patio bar kits you can build yourself!

Taverns-To-Go’s standard offering is made from pressure treated yellow pine lumber… And is currently offered in three sizes. (The roof is galvanized steel.)

You could opt for a 6’ x 4’, 8’ x 5’, or 10’ x 5’ selection… Depending on your preferences and needs.

They also have a line designed for use with a BBQ island. Instead of full wood construction… Only the frame is wood, and the sides and roof are galvanized steel.

This is a bit safer for an outdoor kitchen… However, we would still proceed with caution. (Especially without proper ventilation.)

No matter which option you choose, the design will be the same.

Kits from Taverns-To-Go will have a wraparound bar on three sides, small storage shelves on the wall, and a work shelf inside the bar.

taverns to go logo

All in all, it’s a great garden bar option!

But if you’re not a fan of the look and want something more versatile… There’s something else to consider.

Ready to Assemble DIY Outdoor Concrete Bar

You’ll notice that so far, this showcase of DIY outdoor bar ideas has been missing some popular aesthetics!

Modern, stone, and brick finishes are completely absent… What gives?

Well, traditionally… These finishes haven’t exactly been DIY-friendly! In the case of stone or brick, you really need a masonry background to pull it off properly.

But with a ready to assemble bar island… You get the unique finish you want, without all the hard work!

In fact, you don’t need any construction experience to install an RTA bar kit.

These kits are made from high-performance concrete panels. The finish is fully incorporated into the panel… Which means all you need to do is bolt them together! (The concrete also makes it a safe DIY outdoor kitchen with bar.)

You’ll also receive a concrete or granite countertop, which simply gets placed on top of the frame.

And if you want any bar appliances (sink, refrigerator, storage, etc.)… Those will come with your RTA kit as well!

rta logo
l shaped outdoor kitchen with sink and bar seating

In just a few short hours, you’ll be serving up your favorite drinks!

Just to give you a sense of the range possible with an RTA bar island… Let’s take a look at some outdoor bar ideas DIY!

Easy outdoor bar solution

Design the outdoor bar space custom to your needs. Use our free 3D design tool to get started.

DIY Outdoor Bar Ideas

With all this talk about building an outdoor bar… You’re going to want some idea of what it may look like first!

So, let’s browse!

DIY Outdoor Covered Bar 

galley style outdoor kitchen under gazebo with bar lighting

This outdoor bar idea is nestled nicely under a large gazebo!

You don’t get just one bar island with this example, either… Sometimes you need double the space!

Plus, this galley-style bar has all the accessories you could need for the perfect cocktail night.

On the left island… You’ll find a drop-in cooler to keep beverages and garnishes refreshingly cold.

On the right, there’s an outdoor sink to quickly rinse glassware and hands… And an outdoor refrigerator for cans of beer or other refreshments.

And once your guests all have a beverage in hand… They can mosey on over to the seating area just a few steps away!

Easy DIY Outdoor Bar with Roof

tiered outside kitchen countertop with bar seating

Looking for something a bit different?

This outdoor kitchen bar might be more your speed!

Between the grill and bar island… There’s plenty of bar stools for everyone to be engaged while you grill!

Your guests will feel like they’re at an upscale bar, especially with that view!

And to help make your life a little easier… The bar island has a refreshment center from Coyote.

It features a small sink, integrated cutting board, and drop in cooler… For all of your cocktail station needs!

And of course, there’s plenty of counter space leftover for prepping and serving.

DIY Outdoor Mini Bar 

small outdoor kitchen with mini bar

Just because you’re wondering how to build an outdoor bar… That doesn’t mean you always want a massive bar!

Sometimes, a nice mini bar will do. Especially when paired with an outdoor kitchen!

And while the stone outdoor kitchen is the star of the show here… There’s a lot to love about this small bar.

You’ve got a lovely sink with a gooseneck faucet to keep hands and glasses clean.

There’s also a pull out trash bin to keep cans and bottles from littering your backyard… And the handle is the perfect place to hang a dish towel!

You’ll also peek at a drop in cooler to the left of the sink.

DIY Outdoor Bar and Grill by the Pool

rta outdoor kitchen under a custom structure with a firepit pool and slide

If you want a poolside outdoor bar… The concept is easier to pull off than you might think!

Just take this homeowner’s island, for example.

This DIY L-shaped outdoor bar and kitchen is just a few feet from the pool… Which means refreshments are never far out of reach!

Like the previous examples you’ve seen… This homeowner opted for an outdoor sink and refrigerator for their bar island. They’ve also added an access door underneath the sink, in case repairs need to be made.

We can’t forget about the grill island, either! It comes fully stocked with a gas grill and power burner for optimal versatility.

Outdoor Bar Ideas for Party 

outdoor kitchen with bar and dining table on patio with additional seating

If hosting an outdoor party is your main goal… Look no further than this outdoor bar idea! (Really, the entire outdoor space is gorgeous!)

This modern outdoor bar fits in perfectly with this homeowner’s aesthetic. While there are plenty of sleek, lean lines throughout the space… There’s still a homey atmosphere retained.

While not visible in this image, this outdoor kitchen has a refrigerator and combination storage to make hosting easier.

Guests can enjoy drinks at the bar while you cook… And dine on a full meal at the dining table just a few steps away.

Then afterward… Lounging under the pergola looks quite enticing!

Overall, this backyard is a shining example of what a complete outdoor living space with a bar can look like.

DIY Outdoor Bar with Sink 

rta outdoor kitchen with granite countertop

The first thing you’ll notice about this bar are the beautiful granite countertops!

Its marbled, gray hue provides a stunning surface for drinks and appetizers. The overhang is perfect for guests to cozy up to the countertop, too!

This DIY outdoor bar design also features a sink to keep glassware spotless between uses.

We can’t forget about the BBQ island, either! This homeowner opted for a power burner and gas grill.

Plus, we would be remiss not to mention that fire pit! The placement is excellent for gazing while you’re enjoying a drink at the bar.

And with the stone finish being a near-perfect match for the patio… This DIY outdoor patio bar is quite cohesive!

DIY Outdoor Serving Bar

l shaped outdoor kitchen with storage drawers and two kamado cookers

Need all the counterspace in the world? 

This serving bar is exactly what you need! 

You could have all your appetizers on the left… And beverages on the right… Or however you would like to configure it!

There’s also ample storage in this layout for all your outdoor bartending needs. Keep tumblers, glassware, towels, and more right outside. 

Plus, the dual kamado smoker makes it easy to have good eats while you relax!

DIY Outdoor Bar with Pizza Oven

moks outdoor grill station with bar seating

Beer and pizza are a classic combination… So why not pair your bar island with an outdoor pizza oven

Well, that’s what this homeowner did!

You’ve got the summer kitchen with a pizza oven on the left… Directly facing your bar island on the right. (Complete with matching stools!)

Guests can watch their pizza bubble away in the oven, while sipping on their favorite beverage. 

And if somehow, someone’s still hungry after… Fire up the grill for some quick burgers!

In this design, versatility is the name of the game.

Outdoor Bar Plans DIY

moks l shaped outdoor kitchen with bar seating and additional seating at dining table

This DIY outdoor bar offers a sleek, modern finish! The navy marine hue creates a stunning aesthetic in this space. 

But we’re talking about the bar island, here!

This is another excellent example of how you can keep things simple… And you don’t miss out on anything!

The bar island has a sink and access door beneath. The countertop leaves plenty of space for prepping drinks, or serving up food. 

On the other side, there’s room for three guests to chat the night away. 

As an added bonus… You have the grill island! The built-in grill, outdoor refrigerator, and pull out trash take the hosting potential to another level. 

DIY Outdoor Bar with Fridge

outdoor bar island with refrigerator and tv above

We love the look of this DIY modern outdoor bar… And it couldn’t be more simple!

This DIY outdoor bar kitchen comes with a sleek, black plank finish… And a refined granite bar top.

For features, this bar area includes an outdoor refrigerator, pull out trash and recycle, and triple drawer storage.

If you’re going for the essentials… You won’t need anything else, here!

The fridge will keep drinks cool… The waste bins will keep your space free of bottles and cans… And the drawer storage will stow away any of your bartending needs!

And for an added bonus… The TV on top is perfect for watching the game, right outside.

At this point, you’ve seen quite a few DIY outdoor bar guides and ideas.

If you want a kit… What’s the best place to start?

Getting Started with Your Outdoor DIY Bar Kit

If you’re looking for the best combination of simplicity with a hands-on process… A ready to assemble bar kit is the answer!

We already showcased some of the benefits earlier… So we won’t repeat ourselves.

You’ve seen the ease of assembly, but what about the ease of design?

If you want a custom, easy to build outdoor bar… There’s no better option!

Test out our free online design tool to see it for yourself!

In just a few clicks… A complete 3D render of your outdoor bar DIY design will be presented in front of you!

From there, one of our Design Experts will work one-on-one with you to nail down the details. Once you’re happy with it… We’ll get to work!

The DIY outdoor BBQ bar panels will be shipped to your door… Then it’s ready for you to assemble in a few hours! (Which means you’ll be serving up drinks in no time!)

And if you want to pair it with an outdoor grill station… We’ve got you covered there, too!

Well, what are you waiting for?

Create your free DIY outdoor bar plans… And we’ll be in touch!

Need Help With Your Plans?

Talk to one of our expert designers and they will guide you from planning to installation. Schedule a call today.

FAQ

The cost to build an outdoor bar depends widely on how simple or complex the project is. If you’re just making a simple wood pallet bar… That may be free or just a few dollars. Most thrifty, DIY projects land at around $1,000. If you want a professional outdoor bar kit, these can cost upwards of $12,000+.

If you’re on a tight budget, most homeowners make do with what they already have. If they’re not looking for a long-term solution… Upcycling a piece of existing outdoor furniture or building a bar from a wood pallet are the thriftiest options.

If you want your outdoor bar to last for decades… The best material to use is concrete, hands down. And when topped with granite or concrete countertops, your island is nearly bulletproof!

The cheapest outdoor bar material is wood. Just keep in mind, if you use wood… It may not last as long as you’d like!

This depends entirely on where you live. The fastest way to know if you need a permit is to call or visit the town hall for zoning guidance.

 

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