When cold weather rolls around like it is right now, you might find yourself wistfully looking out at your patio or backyard, longing to sit on those now tarp-covered chairs. The good news is that you can still enjoy your backyard in cold weather, and it all starts by investing in an outdoor fireplace. The best outdoor fireplaces will help keep you and your guests warm for winter patio hangouts, but it’s also a great way to keep the party going on those occasionally chilly summer evenings.
Outdoor fireplaces vary widely in size, price and function. Smaller fire pits are more affordable and give that classic sitting-around-the-campfire feeling. But, since the fire isn’t contained, you might get a smoke smell in your clothes or a stinging in your eyes as the fire moves with the wind.
Chimineas are another option to consider for an outdoor fireplace. They function very similarly to an indoor fireplace — there’s a hearth where the fire is built and a stack that directs the smoke into the air and away from you. A chiminea will keep the smoke smell out of your clothing, and they’re also safer than a regular fire pit. However, they’re sometimes more expensive. Plus, some chimineas only have a hearth that opens on one side, which makes it harder for people to gather around the flame.
All in all, the best outdoor fireplace is super dependant on your exact needs. And, lucky for you, there are tons and tons of outdoor fireplaces to choose from in this world, so we’re sure you’ll find the most perfect option for your backyard.
We’ve picked out some of the best outdoor fireplaces you can buy online, including pits and chimineas that suit a variety of design preferences. Some of the below are even making for the best Christmas gifts of 2021, so check out the best picks below.
1. Hampton Bay 55.5 in. Outdoor Chimenea
This rustic outdoor chiminea from Hampton Bay has a number of features that make it a great all-around pick. The base has a steel mesh cover that extends around the entire spherical firebox, allowing people to sit around it and get equal warmth. The pipe is almost 5 feet tall, helping to keep the smoke away from you while you sit in front of the fire. Plus, a poker is included to help you maintain the flame. And at 35 pounds, it’s solid but not so heavy you couldn’t move it.
2. Solo Stove Bonfire
While we wouldn’t necessarily consider most bonfires to be fireplaces, the Solo Stove is an exception. First and foremost, this baby is visually gorgeous with a full stainless steel exterior for viewing pleasure. It’s totally log-friendly and portable if you want to bring it to a friend’s place for a backyard BBQ or the next tailgate. Best part of all? The Solo Stove uses the brand’s signature 360° Airflow Design™ that not only creates one of the best burns on the planet, but an almost smoke-free experience.
3. Sunjoy Maryland Bel Aire Fireplace
PART OF THE FURNITURE
If you’ve created a second living room in your backyard, you’re going to want an outdoor fireplace that feels like a piece of your furniture. Think of it as your backyard’s television. That said, this outdoor fireplace from Sunjoy hits the nail on the head. It has that all-eyes-on-me aesthetic that your flatscreen has on your mantle inside with an ample number of space on two end tables for added accessories. You really can’t go wrong with this beauty.
4. KRM Propane Fire Pit Table
BEST ALTERNATIVE TO FIREWOOD
Fire may have been man’s first discovery, but actually making a fire hasn’t gotten much easier in the intervening two million years. If you struggle with getting a wood fireplace going, consider this easy option from KRM, which uses propane as its source. It has an easy ignition dial, similar to a kitchen burner. The included lid converts the fire pit into a table when it’s not in use.
5. Necessories Santa Fe Compact Outdoor Fireplace
If you want something that looks more permanent, this option has a steepled design and a classic stone look (but is actually made from sturdy concrete). At 6 feet tall, it makes a great focal point for a backyard, without overwhelming smaller spaces. The brand also sells matching wood boxes that you can attach to the side. The fireplace has clear instructions and is meant to be fairly easy to assemble — one reviewer described it as “adult LEGO.”
6. Endless Summer Wood Burning Pagoda Chiminea
BEST FOR COOKING
This pagoda-shaped chiminea looks a bit like a pizza oven, and you actually can use it for cooking. There’s a pull-out cooking grid that sits on top of the flame. The firebox is housed in a mesh spark screen that extends around the entire chiminea, giving you 360-degree access to the flame. It’s a compact option that will suit smaller spaces — the chiminea is less than four feet tall.
7. Fire Sense Solid Base Revolver Steel Fire Pit
This fire pit from Fire Sense has a simple, modern look, and it’s well-suited to place between two chairs on a patio or balcony. It’s two feet by two feet and 14 inches tall, so it’s one of the more compact fire pits on this list. The best feature is the included wooden top — you can place it over the pit when the pit’s not in use to turn it into an end table. Like most of the options on this list, this fire pit is designed for use with wood, not charcoal.
8. Sand and Stable Bastoam Outdoor Backyard Steel Wood Burning Chiminea
BEST OLD SCHOOL
This charming outdoor fireplace has a dated look that calls to mind winter vacations at lakeside cabins. The compact size makes it well suited to small patios, while the wide mouth offers plenty of warmth. This chiminea includes a cover to protect it when not in use. Best part of all? It’s on sale right now for over 30% off.
9. Terrain Weathering Steel Obelisk Chiminea
This chiminea has a distinctly modern look thanks to its angular shape and minimalist design. It has two openings at the base. One is the actual firebox, and the chamber below it is where you can store firewood, keeping it close at hand when building the fire. The obelisk is just under 5 feet tall.
10. BioLite FirePit+ Wood & Charcoal Burning Fire Pit
Did you ever think that one of the best outdoor fireplaces could be in any way technologically savvy? Well, get ready to be shocked. The BioLite FirePit+ Wood & Charcoal Burning Fire Pit uses advanced technology to create a fully smokeless atmosphere for anyone using the pit. It radiates heat outward and creates highly-efficient flames that are visible uptop and through the mesh body. You can control the size of the flames manually or through the free Bluetooth app available for download. Last but not least, you see that box on the exterior? You can even charge your phone through that.
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