Smoke-Free Fire Pit Ideas

Bring On the S’mores with These Smoke-Free Fire Pit Ideas


These fire features help take the party outside while keeping the air clear.

There are few things more inviting than the warmth, crackling and glow of a fire outdoors. As the evenings grow cooler, fire pits can extend the time you can enjoy your backyard. Create a welcoming gathering place with a handful of chairs drawn around the fire and plenty of hot cider and nibbles, and your guests may be tempted to linger well after sundown.

If you’re thinking about adding a fire feature to your landscape, you can go for a smoke-free design. Many contemporary built-in fire pits burn natural gas rather than logs as fuel, saving the air from polluting wood smoke. With plenty of styles to choose from, here are some ideas for including a gas fire pit in your own backyard.

Intimate gathering.

Sink into a cushy chair and relax in front of the fire in the backyard, as the owners of this modern farmhouse-style home do. The rim of this built-in fire pit is wide enough that it could be used for serving a tray of drinks or plate of appetizers without its being too close to the flames.

Beacon in the dark.

When choosing the position of your fire pit, consider whether you’d be able to see the fire element from inside the house. The flicker of flames can tempt you to step outside and enjoy the evening in the garden when you might otherwise be prone to stay inside. Here, a meandering path through lush foliage leads to the entrance to an inviting circular fire pit and seating area.

Black and gold.

To get this look, coordinate materials and colors for every element, from built-in seating to throw pillows, fire features and even potted succulents. Using clear glass to fill the fire pit rather than the typical black stones really makes the flames sparkle.

Narrow fire.

A long row of flames dances under a concave stone wall in this contemporary design. A long, narrow fire feature works well in a side yard or on a skinny terrace, as it can easily be slotted into a slim space to provide warmth and light.

Sunken and sandy.

Dangle your feet over the sandy floor of a sunken fire pit. To allow proper drainage of rainwater, make the ground material permeable by using sand, gravel or wide-set pavers and have a professional install underground drainage to convey water through the landscape.

Cozy corner.

A quarter-circle-shaped concrete fire pit is slotted into this corner nook and makes every spot along the benches a front-row seat for the warm glow. For built-in seating and fire pit arrangements, be particularly careful how you position the seating in relation to the fire feature — once it’s in place, there’s no flexibility to change it. Here, the distance from bench to fire pit allows people to put their feet up on the thick concrete sides.

Fiery orbs.

Aconcrete fire pit piled high with flame-proof concrete balls adds a whimsical focal point to the backyard whether or not the fire is lit. “Fire balls” come in a variety of materials, including concrete, terra cotta and even porcelain in different colors.

Natural stone.

The backyard of this winery in San Luis Obispo, California, blends beautifully with the surrounding hills and ornamental grasses and with the seat-height walls made of caramel-colored stones. The fire pit in this well-loved Houzz photo is informal, with one side made up of a natural boulder. As a nod to the industry of the area, the glass in the fire pit is from recycled wine bottles.

Urban chic.

A fire pit set into a raised concrete bed creates a second gathering spot in this urban backyard. While the deck and lounge chairs may get more use during the day, pulling up a few chairs around the crackling fire would be an ideal way to spend the evening.

Here at Ferrara-Buist Landscape, we love helping to make your outdoor living space something that you use year-round. If a smokeless modern fireplace is not what you have in mind some into our design center to see all the other options.

Vincent J. DePaoli

Vincent J. DePaoli

Ferrara Buist Landscape

Let Ferrara-Buist landscape design and build your dream home !  Call us today or come in to our design center and have a chat with Vincent.