When you decide to add an outdoor kitchen to your home, designing that kitchen really is one of the most exciting parts of the process. Looking at different designs and figuring out what will work for your home is just as fun as designing the kitchen inside your home, simply because there are so many decisions to make.

One of the decisions that you will have to decide fairly early on is what countertop you want for your outdoor kitchen. There are lots of different options to choose from when it comes to your countertops, book a discovery call with us to look at the different options available.

In this guide, we’re looking at one of the most popular styles of countertops – butcher’s block. Butcher’s block has been used for many years, and one of the biggest perks of this type of countertop is that it is easy to look after. You might expect this to make it perfect for an outdoor kitchen, but is this actually the case?

Here we’re taking a look at whether, or not, you can use butcher’s block outdoors. Keep on reading to find out more!

What Is Butchers Block?

First things first, let’s take a look at what butcher’s block is. As we have said, butchers block is a type of countertop that has been very popular for quite some years. This style of countertop mimics the countertops found in traditional butcher’s stores, and it is made using wood.

Butcher’s block is an incredibly popular type of countertop, primarily because it is very hard-wearing. There is so much to love about this style of countertop, and that’s without even mentioning how good it looks. Butcher’s block is timeless, so it is a good investment for your money as it will never go out of fashion.

A lot of people opt for butcher’s block countertops inside their home’s kitchen, but is it possible to use this type of countertop in an outdoor kitchen? Well, that’s a very good question.

As we said earlier, a lot of people expect that butcher’s block will be perfect for outdoor kitchens because this style of countertop is super hard-wearing. But most of the time this isn’t the case. You can use the butcher’s block outside, but you will have to take steps to protect and preserve your butcher’s block. Let’s take a look at why this is.

Can You Use Butchers Block Outside?

Can You Use Butchers Block Outside

So, let’s take a look at whether, or not, butcher’s block is suitable for use in an outdoor kitchen. If you are really interested in fitting butcher’s block on top of the counters in your outdoor kitchen, then this is something that you can do. However, you cannot simply fit the butcher’s block and leave it.

If you want to use the butcher’s block outside, then you will have to take steps to preserve your butcher’s block for outdoor use. You cannot simply fit a butcher’s block that is designed for indoor use outside and leave it as the butcher’s block will quickly become damaged. That is because butcher’s block isn’t designed for outdoor use.

In order for the butcher’s block to be fitted in an outdoor kitchen, you will need to make it waterproof. Butcher’s block is made using wood, so it isn’t naturally waterproof, instead, it will become impacted by the water which can cause discoloration, warping, and lots more.

So, if you want to use butcher’s block outdoors, you can, you’ll just have to do some preparation work for it first.

Is Butchers Block Waterproof?

Unlike some types of countertops that are waterproof, butcher’s block is not. That is why butcher’s block can become damaged when it comes into constant contact with water. If you constantly pour water on an indoor butcher’s block then it will become damaged.

Likewise, if you fit butcher’s block outdoors in an area where it rains a lot, your butcher’s block will become damaged.

As well as not being waterproof, butcher’s block is also not water-resistant. This means that there is very little to protect the butcher’s block against water when it comes into contact with it. A small amount of water is fine, but any more and your butcher’s block could become very damaged.

Thankfully, it is possible to make your butcher’s block waterproof. So, if you have always dreamed of an outdoor kitchen with a butcher’s block countertop, then this is something that you can do. But you’ll have to waterproof it first, so let’s take a look at how to do this.

How Do You Waterproof Butchers Block For Outdoor Use?

How Do You Waterproof Butchers Block For Outdoor Use

As we have established, it is perfectly fine to fit a butcher’s block in your outdoor kitchen, however, you will need to take steps to protect the butcher’s block against the great outdoors. As the butcher’s block is made of wood, it can easily become damaged by the elements. But thankfully, waterproofing it is easy.

All you need to do to seal your butcher’s block is add a sealant to the wood. If you pay for somebody to fit your outdoor kitchen for you, they will usually do this step for you so that your outdoor kitchen is safe and ready to use.

The waterproof sealant that is added to the butcher’s block essentially seals the wood, as the name suggests. The sealant protects the wood that is used to make the butcher’s block from the elements as it totally covers the wood.

The sealant itself is waterproof, so when water comes into contact with the sealant, it will simply roll off. The water will not be allowed to penetrate the wood or build up and damage the wood. Instead, the water will simply roll away, leaving the butcher’s block as good as new.

How To Protect Butchers Block Outside

The first step to protecting the butcher’s block that you plan on fitting in your outdoor kitchen is sealing it. A good quality sealant will protect your butcher’s block against the elements and ensure that it doesn’t become damaged in the cooking process too.

However, there are additional steps that you will need to take in order to protect your butcher’s block.

Regularly re-sealing your butcher’s block is one of them. When it comes to butcher’s block, you cannot simply seal it once and leave it be. Over time, the seal on the butcher’s block will start to wear, and eventually, gaps will appear in the seal.

Water will be able to penetrate these gaps and access your butcher’s block, which will eventually damage the butcher’s block. So, regularly resealing it is essential.

In addition to this, caring for your butcher’s block is essential. Whenever you use your butcher’s block, make sure that you clean it regularly, especially after you use your outdoor kitchen. Make sure that you use non-abrasive cleaners when cleaning your butcher’s block as these will not damage the butcher’s block or the sealant that is protecting it.


In short, you absolutely can use the butcher’s block outdoors if you want to. Butcher’s block is pretty hard wearing, however, it can become damaged by the elements. For that reason, it is important to seal your butcher’s block before using it outdoors.

If you are interested in using butcher’s block in the design of your outdoor kitchen, book a discovery call with us to discuss your options.

We hope you’ve found this information helpful, thank you for reading!