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Buying guide for
The Best Outdoor Pizza Ovens
Pizza is good even when it’s bad, or so the saying goes, but why settle for subpar pies when you can make your own? There is no reason why you cannot make pizza to rival that found in your local pizzeria at a fraction of the cost of an outdoor pizza oven. A pizza oven provides another alfresco cooking option when you don’t want to grill, and it is always a huge hit at family gatherings or garden parties.
Pizza ovens are fairly large purchases, so it’s important to think about what you want from yours. Perhaps the most important consideration is the fuel type. What do you prefer: the authentic flavor of a wood-burning pizza oven, the convenience of a gas oven, or the ability to use a variety of fuels? Other factors to consider include the size and weight of the oven, its maximum temperature, and the type of cooking surface.
Read on for our full guide to outdoor pizza ovens and see some of our favorites.
Best Overall: Ooni Fyra 12 Wood Pellet Pizza Oven
PROS: It only takes 15 minutes to reach 932 degrees, and pizza bakes in 60 seconds. This is perfect for fast, high-volume pizza production. The 22-pound design makes it highly portable. Pellets of hardwood help maintain oven temperature and give pizza a smokey, aromatic flavor. No cleaning is required.
CONS:The cost of purchasing wood pellets on an ongoing basis. Requires a lot of table space.
Best Deal: BIG HORN OUTDOORS Pizza Ovens
PROS: It reaches temperatures of 860 degrees, is ready to cook in 18 minutes, and can cook a pizza in 90 seconds. Made of stainless steel. Only 25 pounds for easy transport and storage.
CONS: Some consumers noted that the pizza stone broke after little use.
Best for Experts:Camp Chef Italia Artisan Pizza Oven
PROS: The double-layered ceiling bakes like a brick oven. In 15 minutes, it is ready to cook. It is lightweight and easy to move. The built-in valve ignition/micro-adjust valve allows you to control the flame. A temperature gauge monitors internal temperatures. The door is ventilated and has a handle. The temperature reaches 700 degrees. Uses a 1lb disposable propane bottle or regulator with a 5' hose to connect to a standard bulk propane tank.
CONS: Some consumers reported that when using disposable propane bottles the oven does not get hot enough.
Pizza ovens that use wood for fuel provide that authentic smoky flavor that you can only get from a pizza cooked in a wood-fired oven. It does require some effort, however, to keep the wood burning at the correct temperature. It is possible to find ovens that use wood pellets rather than kindling, but they don’t tend to have that distinctive wood-fired taste.
For outdoor pizza ovens, gas is a far more straightforward fuel source. All you need to do is connect a gas tank to your oven, set the temperature or flame strength, and leave the oven alone. Some users are willing to sacrifice flavor for ease of use, even if it’s not quite as complex.
A charcoal-fired outdoor pizza oven is less common (but not unheard of). Charcoal ovens are ideal for cooking some types of pizza, such as New York and other American pizza varieties.
It is important to consider both the external size as well as the size of the interior cooking area of any outdoor pizza oven you are considering. There are many smaller ovens that can only cook pizzas up to 12 or 14 inches, but there are also some larger ovens that can cook pizzas up to 18 inches. Many compact options are lightweight, portable, and may even have foldable legs to make them even easier to carry.
A few outdoor pizza ovens are extremely heavy, while others are quite light. If your pizza oven will be positioned in one place in your yard, the weight won’t matter that much, but if you’d prefer a portable option, it should be lightweight.
Features of Outdoor Pizza Ovens
The base of pizza ovens with stone cooking floors is usually crisp with some charred spots.
You can get a slightly smoky flavor with some gas outdoor pizza ovens that have a smoker function, much like a wood-burning pizza oven.
A waterproof cover is sometimes included with outdoor pizza ovens to ensure they remain in good condition even in bad weather.
Accessories for Outdoor Pizza Ovens
To go with your new outdoor pizza oven, you’ll need a few accessories. Here are some we recommend.
Wooden pizza peel: Ironwood Gourmet Napoli Pizza Peel
Wooden pizza peels are a good option for sliding pizzas into your oven since the raw dough does not stick to the textured surface as it does to aluminum peels. Made from pure acacia wood, this pizza peel measures 196 square inches.
Aluminum pizza peel: Kitchen Supply Aluminum Pizza Peel
For retrieving and turning pizzas without mishap, aluminum peels are better than wooden ones. Due to the thin edge of the aluminum peel, it is easier to get between the crust and the cooking surface.
Heatproof gloves: Grill Heat Aid Extreme Heat-Resistant Gloves
A pizza oven that reaches 700°F to 900°F can easily cause a nasty burn. Heat-resistant gloves protect hands against temperatures up to 932°F.
Infrared thermometer: Etekcity Infrared Thermometer
If you want to become a pizzaiolo, you must understand the importance of temperature when cooking pizza. You’ll get subpar results if your oven is too hot or too cold when you cook the pizza. Infrared thermometers can be used to measure the temperature inside your oven from a safe distance.
You may like to review our other “Outdoor Pizza Ovens in our shop.”
The Prices of Outdoor Pizza Ovens
The price of outdoor pizza ovens ranges from $100 to $5,000.
Typically, an outdoor pizza oven costs between $100 and $200. It usually runs on gas and may not run on other fuel sources.
Typically, these pizza ovens cost between $200 and $500. You will find wood-fired ovens and multi-fuel options that give you a choice of wood, gas, charcoal, or pellets at this price.
The price of a high-end outdoor pizza oven ranges from $500 to $1,000.
It costs about $3,000 to $5,000 to install a custom-built brick pizza oven in your yard.
Tips for Outdoor Pizza Ovens
- Try out your pizza dough recipe. It is the dough recipe that makes the difference between a decent pizza and an exceptional pizza. Longer proofing times tend to produce more complex flavors. You can play around with your recipe until you get the pizza you like.
- Be sure to read the instructions carefully. Each outdoor oven operates differently. Make sure to read the instructions before you use it on its first outing to avoid any mishaps.
- Think about how many pizzas you want to make in a row. There are some pizza ovens that lose considerable heat after making each pie and require a few minutes of rest in between. You might run into this problem if you plan on making many pizzas at once.
- Don’t overload your pizza with toppings. This causes pizzas not to cook through as quickly, leaving you with a soggy, doughy base. Less is more when it comes to pizza toppings.