Build a DIY outdoor pallet coffee table with drink cooler for relaxing on the patio this summer. This intermediate outdoor furniture woodworking plan and design features waterfall legs and a drink trough or planter.
This outdoor coffee table with drink trough is part of our Pallets Aplenty pallet wood projects series. See more pallet project ideas here, and be sure to check out this octagon outdoor coffee table plan and build large pallet planters with this tutorial, too.
DIY Outdoor Pallet Coffee Table
A while back we featured the most amazing outdoor dining table with inset drink holders. The idea was really genius and has been made hundreds of times.
So that got us thinking. What about those of you that like to sit around and talk on a patio, but don’t necessarily have room for a huge dining table. This really cool coffee sized table with a drink cooler was born.
My wife and I sat down and started thinking about plans. Chevrons are getting old and so we didn’t want to do a chevron, while we liked the idea of herringbone, we decided to try something different. Still with some movement from section to section.
My wife drew up a cool looking top and as I drew it up in 3D I came up with waterfall over the edge table top design, integrating the legs and the tabletop. And the modern waterfall coffee table was born!
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We knew that we wanted to make if out of pallet wood. (We literally have have a full pallet 4′ high of broken down pallets in our backyard that needs to be used up!!)
We designed the table around the center planter box, we bought off Amazon here. The bin comes in different sizes as well, if you wanted to make your table bigger or smaller to fit your needs.
The very best part about this design is it’s many options for how to use it. You can use it for a cooler for drinks at a summer party, you can plant it with beautiful flowers or cool succulents or put it in your family room and fill it with craft supplies, or toys to be a Legos play table.
How to Build an Outdoor Coffee Table from Pallets
Please note: The video was built a little different than the plans. The plans have a small lip that the planter box will sit on, holding it just below the top layer of the table, as well as an optional cover to extend the tabletop when the box is not in use.
Outdoor Pallet Coffee Table Dimensions
We designed this outdoor coffee table to be big enough to use for entertaining, but small enough to fit a regular size deck or patio. It measures 49 1/2″ L x 27 1/2″ W x 18″ H. The inset drink trough uses a 30 inch planter box, which measures 29.75″ L x 8″ W x 5″ H.
Outdoor Pallet Coffee Table FAQs
Where do I get pallet wood to build a table?
We found a local place that sells broken down pallets by the pallet full, so we bought a pallet of pallet boards. (So far, we’ve used this pallet wood to make jumbo yard dominoes, an easy rustic memo board, a DIY wood tray, and a wood Christmas tree advent calendar.)
How many pallets does it take to build a table?
To build this pallet coffee table, you’ll need 3-5 pallets worth of 40″ or longer boards, or approximately 25-30 boards (plus a couple of 2x4s for support structure).
Gather the wood of approximately the same thickness. Not all pallets are the same, but if you can find most the the same thickness, the panels will work better.
The dimensions of the plans are designed for boards that are all around 3 1/4″ wide and 5/8″ thick. Depending on the pallets you use, you might have to adjust the measurements of the boards to work with the design.
Can I build a pallet table with new lumber?
If you don’t have pallets and just want to purchase the wood, sub these red cedar flat top fence pickets from Home Depot. (Also available in 6ft length here or dog-ear here, if your store doesn’t stock the flat top boards.)
The cedar fence pickets are the same dimensions as the pallet wood the plan is designed for, and the cedar is naturally weather resistant so it’s a great material for a DIY outdoor coffee table.
How do I waterproof an outdoor pallet table?
We chose to treat the pallet wood with teak oil after sanding the surfaces smooth. Teak oil penetrates the wood to protect it from water, without giving the table a shiny finish like many other outdoor weatherproofing treatments do. It’s also easy to apply or reapply later as needed.
DIY Rustic Pallet Wood Coffee Table With Drink Cooler
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- Pallet Wood: approximately 3-5 pallets worth of 40″ or longer boards, or 25-30 boards
- Alternate lumber options: 5/8″ x 3 1/2″ cedar fence pickets
- 2-3 Pine 2×4’s (or pallet wood if they are big enough.)
- Plastic Flower Box Planter, White, 30-Inch Length
- Teak Oil
- Printable woodworking plan
We decided to try the biscuit join to keep the tabletop boards together, so that you cannot see holes where screws are. But if you do not have a biscuit cutter you could also secure them together using a Kreg Jig pocket hole jig on the back of the panels.
- Table Saw (to rip boards to uniform width)
- Compound Miter Saw
- Rafter Square
- Biscuit Joiner or Kreg Jig (for legs and top)
- Brad Nailer
- Bar Clamps
- Tape Measure
Purchase the outdoor coffee table with drink trough woodworking plans here.
This outdoor coffee table is great for ice and drinks when hosting a party or growing flowers!
What do you think of our pallet wood coffee table with drink cooler?
Be sure to also check out these other amazing Pallet Challenge projects
pallet wood spice rack | Red Cottage Chronicles
scalloped farmhouse headboard | This Mama’s Dance
stacked pallet coffee table | AD Aesthetic
rustic pallet wood crown molding | The Weathered Fox
under bed toy storage | Our House Now a Home
outdoor coffee table with drink cooler | Remodelaholic (you are here!)
outdoor pallet bar | Our Crafty Mom
hexagon side table | Lemon Thistle
paper roll pallet memo board | Cupcakes and Crinoline
And you’ll also love these other pallet projects:
- large pallet wood planter
- scrap pallet wood jumbo yard dominoes
- easy DIY pallet wood memo board
- pallet wood blanket ladder or shoe storage
- plus 85 more amazing pallet wood projects
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I am the husband of the amazing Cassity of Remodelaholic. I love to problem solve and to design and build things inside and outside the house to make life better. I am a professional Landscape Architect by trade and love the outdoors.