Garden DIY: How to build a budget BBQ from a terracotta plant pot – ‘keep the cost down’

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Penny-pinching experts at have shared expert advice on how to keep costs down this summer and build a BBQ using low-cost materials. While a state-of-the-art, outdoor BBQ is a tempting investment, changeable British weather can often mean they don’t get used for the majority of the year. Whether you’re looking for a temporary, portable or permanent structure, there are plenty of cost-effective ways to get grilling in the garden including terracotta plant pots, an old toolbox and roasting trays.

1. Terracotta pot grill

This is a tiny grill that definitely won’t feed a huge group of individuals.

However, using a terracotta pot is an environmentally-friendly way to enjoy a BBQ on a smaller scale.

Terracotta plant pots can be purchased from supermarkets, garden centres, hardware stores and can even be found at the back of the garden.

They are a great size to put on a heat-resistant table and apart from the pot, all you need is a rack to cook the food on.

Place bricks at the bottom of the base to retain heat.

The bigger the pot, the harder it will be to heat up.

2. Toolbox

Using an old metal toolbox will allow you to upcycle something you no longer use.

However, if you don’t have one, you can often find them in old vintage shops, eBay or on online auction sites.

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The larger the toolbox, the more food you will be able to cook at one time.

Coat the toolbox in heat resistant paint, and then pop charcoal in the bottom and a grill or cooling rack over the opening.

3. Brick BBQ base

If you have excess bricks and paint left over, you can always build a solid base BBQ.

To do this, you need to create a square or squared semi-circle out of the materials you have and cement it together to make it a sturdy structure that is a comfortable height.

Once you’ve built it, you can lay a grill over the top.

You can also build this on a smaller scale by simply building a base of 12 to 15 bricks.

Build it up a brick or two high around the edges of the small structure.

4. BBQ barrel

You can make a BBQ using a clean bin, cask or keg but you will need to cut the metal cylinder shape in half, hinged and then painted with a heat protected coat.

The trickiest aspect of this is making a stand to put the barrel on.

The stand can be made out of scaffolding and fence posts.

A spokesperson for said: “It doesn’t matter how small your BBQ budget is this year, as we have collated some ways to save money, by making a new outdoor grill to cook for guests on.

“As people start fully emerging from lockdown for social occasions, outdoor events are likely to carry on being the preferred and safest option.

“The best part of making tailoring your own grill station is that you can keep the cost down whilst still customising everything you want, from the size of the cooking area, down to the materials you use to design them.”

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