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Wouldn't it be great to recreate the crunch of a crispy Neopolitan pizza in the comfort of your own home? Unfortunately, your kitchen oven can't reach the 800-plus degrees Fahrenheit required to do so. This is where a pizza oven comes in handy. A good pizza oven is able to reach high temperatures without the long preheating times and extensive cleanup that standard kitchen ovens require.
Plus, a pizza oven is often far more versatile than the name implies. Perfectly seared steaks or roasted fish with extra-crispy skins are ideal in high-heat ovens. Quickly roasting vegetables and side dishes in a pizza oven helps develop flavors quickly, offering crisp exteriors and juicy, tender interiors. There's a wide range of pizza ovens available on the market, from brick, gas, or wood-fired outdoor ovens to pricier indoor models. Some are small and portable and some will make quite a statement in your backyard.
Our at-home testers tried out a variety of styles of pizza ovens from some of the most popular brands. They rated the pizza ovens on setup, heat retention, heat control, versatility, cooking time, and overall value. After extensive research and lots of pizza taste-testing, we rounded up the best options, including splurge-worthy models and more affordable picks.
Here, our list of the best pizza ovens for your next gourmet pizza night.
Best Overall: Ooni Koda Gas-Powered Outdoor Pizza Oven
Cooks pizza in 60 seconds
No assembly required
Can be tricky to rotate pizza
It couldn’t be easier. Just turn on the gas, and in about 15 minutes, the Ooni Koda pizza oven can reach temperatures of up to 932 degrees Fahrenheit (according to the manufacturer), or you can turn the heat control dial down for a lower, slower cook. Our tester found that the oven took about 25 minutes (at full power) for the pizza stone to reach 800 degrees Fahrenheit. With super-high heat, the Ooni Koda can cook pizza in 1 minute, so you can feed your family in no time at all. It’s also great at searing steaks and chops, roasting vegetables, and more.
This is an attractive oven with a sleek design, no chimney, and three legs that keep it stable on any surface. The body is powder-coated, cold-rolled steel with stainless steel accents. Our tester found that it was easy to transport, weighing about 20 pounds. When it’s time to store or travel, the legs fold down. This comes with a stone baking board for the perfect pizza crust. This oven can handle pizzas up to 13 inches if your aim is good (the pizza stone is 13 1/4 inches wide). If you need more space, it has a bigger brother that can handle pizzas up to 16 inches and can also be converted to run on natural gas.
While it's not fully weatherproof, our tester found it easy to move out of inclement weather, and cleaning is also simple. Ooni offers a three-year warranty if you purchase directly from its site.
Temperature range: Up to 932° | Heat Source: Propane Gas | Max Pizza Size: 13 inches
"The Koda isn’t just useful for pizza, either. We fired up whole fish, steak, lamb chops, pineapple, tomatoes, corn, sweet potatoes, beets, and other veggies." — Pete Scherer, Product Tester
Best for Wood-Fired Pizza: Ooni Karu 12 Multi-Fuel Pizza Oven
Cooks pizza in under a minute
Burns wood or lump charcoal
Gas adapter available
Burns through fuel quickly
Needs attention during cooking
There’s something about the flavor of wood-fired cooking that makes it incredibly appealing. The Ooni Karu can scratch that itch since it runs on wood or charcoal, just like many barbecue grills. Grab some hickory or mesquite or maple wood for their unique flavors, or load up charcoal snatched from the grill for heat and smoke without the woodiness. The oven is ready to cook in about 15 minutes and can reach 932 degrees Fahrenheit if you need the heat.
The body is stainless steel with ceramic fiber insulation, so it holds the heat in, while the Ooni baking stone retains heat for a perfect crust every time. The included pizza stone is 13 inches in diameter for family-sized pizzas, or you can toss in smaller individual ones as the family tops their own. They bake in about a minute, so no one will be waiting long. In fact, when put toward the back of the oven, our reviewer was able to cook pizzas in about 45 seconds.
A chimney baffle controls the heat by adjusting the oxygen flow for high heat or for low and slow cooking. A port on the back makes it easy to add more fuel for longer cooking sessions or to add new wood for different flavors. When it’s time to move or store, the legs fold down for a smaller footprint. A gas burner adapter is also available for separate purchase, to convert it to use propane.
Our tester raved about the delicious results, as well as how fun the cooking itself was. And, if you want to go beyond pizza night, she successfully baked cornbread and grilled hot dogs. This might be a splurge, but you won't be disappointed.
Before the Ooni Karu, there was the Ooni 3, which offered similar wood-fired pizza capabilities. The Ooni 3 was one of the first cost-effective pizza ovens available to the public, which helped launch the high-quality homemade pizza revolution we see now. It was discontinued at the beginning of 2020 to make way for two more advanced models, the Karu and the Fyra. For those who still own the Ooni 3 and are interested in the gas burner connection, the same attachment can be used as the Karu 12. Ooni offers a three-year warranty if you purchase directly from its site.
Temperature range: Up to 932° | Heat Source: Wood, Charcoal, or Propane Gas | Max Pizza Size: 12 inches
"I've made good pizzas before, but ones from the Ooni Karu 12 Multi-Fuel Pizza Oven were stellar. Aside from producing delicious pizzas, it was fun and easy to start and stoke the fires." — Donna Currie, Product Tester
Best for Indoor Pizza: Breville Smart Oven Pizzaiolo Pizza Oven
Mimics wood-fired ovens
Multiple pizza settings
Manual control for infinite options
With an indoor pizza oven, you don’t need to worry about weather, fire, or lighting conditions. Sure, you can bake a pizza in your standard oven or countertop oven, but those can’t reach the temperatures required for authentic pizza. That’s where this oven from Breville shines since it can reach 750 degrees Fahrenheit and cook a pizza in about 2 minutes—so you can have pizzas for family movie night. It is well insulated, so the exterior stays as cool as possible, despite the super-high heat.
The pizza stone is designed to produce the essential char you’d find on wood-fired pizza, while radiant heat provides the attractive leopard-spotted crust and convection heat handles perfect cooking of the cheese and toppings. Unlike ovens that only allow overall temperature control, this one allows separate control of the heating elements for more or less heat on the top or bottom for custom cooking options.
Like other smart Breville appliances, this has easy-to-use settings, so it’s simple to choose frozen thin-crust pizza, deep dish, or a wood-fired style pizza. It’s also possible to customize the settings to get the perfect results for any pizza style and personal preference. Our tester successfully baked everything from frozen pizza to a thin Margherita pizza to a pan pizza layered with cheese and a meaty Bolognese. You won't get quite the same smoky flavor as a wood-fired grill, but for ease and convenience, the Breville cannot be beaten.
It comes with a stainless steel pizza peel for sliding pizzas in and out of the oven and a carbon steel pan with a removable handle for thicker pies.
Temperature range: Up to 750° | Heat Source: Electric | Max Pizza Size: 12 inches
"I loved the easy controls for the different styles of pizzas because I didn’t need to think too hard about what a pan pizza needed compared to New York style." — Donna Currie, Product Tester
Best Splurge: Roccbox Portable Wood and Gas Pizza Oven
Hot enough for Neapolitan pizza
Cooks pizza in one to three minutes
Good heat distribution and retention
Wood burning attachment is impractical
Pizza connoisseurs will delight in the Gozney Roccbox pizza oven. That’s because this portable oven—which can be powered by either gas through a propane hook-up or with wood—can turn out a pizza every 90 seconds. The oven works fast because it reaches scorching hot temperatures of more than 900 degrees Fahrenheit.
Retractable legs and a carrying strap allow you to bring to a park, your backyard, and other places, since moving the device is easy. (Do note, though, that carrying it around is a bit of a workout—the oven’s weight tops 50 pounds).
The oven has a built-in thermometer, so you can gauge the temperature, and is sold with a pizza peel so you can easily slip pizzas in and out of the oven. Its dual heating options are handy: You may prefer the flavor that comes with a wood-fired oven, but you can’t beat the convenience of a propane hook-up. And, the oven is ideal for cooking other foods that benefit from a high temperature as well—not just pizza: Our tester seared steak, caramelized peach and onion tarts, and crisped up a whole fish.
The price point is definitely high, but the design of the Roccbox coupled with its efficiency makes it a standout product and, according to our tester, you're going to end up with authentic Neapolitan pizza.
Temperature range: 932° | Heat Source: Wood or Propane Gas | Max Pizza Size: 11 inches
"When cooking pies, I found the oven’s heat transfer to be well-balanced between the top and bottom. Crust and toppings baked in proper proportion with only the desirable amount of charring." — Pete Scherer, Product Tester
Best for Easy Cleaning: Camp Chef Italia Artisan Pizza Oven
Great stainless steel design
Short feet for stability
Heats up quickly
Has a learning curve
If you want brick oven results without a brick oven, this propane-fired pizza oven has you covered, with a double-layered ceiling that keeps heat inside and cooks the top of the pizza properly at the same time the crust browns. This preheats quickly, so you’ll be ready to cook in about 15 minutes, and it gets hot enough to cook a pizza in 8 minutes or less with the 17,000 BTU burner—our tester baked 12-inch pizzas in about 3 minutes. In fact, you might want to turn the heat down just a little from the maximum to avoid incinerating the pizza while you pop open a beverage.
This has a built-in ignition valve and temperature adjustment, so you can turn the heat up or down to find the ideal temperature. A built-in temperature gauge lets you check the internal air temperature, and the ventilated door lets you keep the hot air in or ventilate it if it gets too hot. It's portable, but at nearly 50 pounds, not the lightest option.
The exterior is stainless steel for easy cleaning, and it will never rust. For the interior, our reviewer recommends leaving it on for about 15 minutes after cooking to burn up any leftover flour and cheese, and then grab a bench scraper to gather up charred bits.
This includes a 20 x 13-inch cordierite ceramic pizza stone, a regulator for the propane, and a 5-foot hose so you can attach a bulk propane tank. You can cook pizzas up to 13 inches in diameter. If you want something larger, you can fit an oval or rectangular pizza that’s as wide as the 20 inch stone. Our reviewer churned out "grill-quality" burgers and boneless chicken breasts, too.
Temperature range: Up to 700° | Heat Source: Propane Gas | Max Pizza Size: 13 inches
"Compared to making pizza in the kitchen oven, the Camp Chef cooks up pies faster and crispier, and it doesn’t take as long to either pre-heat or reheat between pizzas as a kitchen oven does." — Jennifer Burns Bright, Product Tester
Best Grill Insert: Onlyfire Universal Stainless Steel Pizza Oven Kit
Includes 14-inch stone
Easy to clean
Poor quality control
Instructions are lacking
If you have a gas-fired grill, maybe you don’t need another outdoor appliance just for pizza. This insert is designed to work inside a gas grill—with the lid open—while it provides a perfect space for cooking pizza evenly on the top and bottom, which is something you can't do by simply throwing a pizza on the grill grates or on a pizza stone on the grill. The base is 17 inches square, so it’s wise to measure your grill to make sure it fits. Our tester used the Onlyfire kit with her Weber grill as well as a smaller pellet grill with no problems. The included pizza stone is 14 inches, and a 13.5 inches-wide pizza peel is included to get the pizza neatly in and out of the oven.
The oven is made from stainless steel with a double-walled roof to keep the heat in, and it has a thermometer on one corner so you can check the internal temperature easily. While our tester found that this kit was a much better option than trying to cook a pizza directly on the grill, she warned there is a learning curve. In fact, she discovered she got the best results when she closed the grill (which goes against the instructions because it can damage the thermometer). You might not get perfect pizza (our reviewer found that the bottoms of her pizzas always cooked faster than the tops), but it's a solution for someone who loves to grill and doesn't have a dedicated pizza oven.
Since this relies on the grill for its heat source, the maximum temperature will depend on the power of the grill. A similar kit is also available for charcoal grills.
Temperature range: Max grill heat | Heat Source: Gas Grill | Max Pizza Size: 13.5 inches
"The Onlyfire Pizza Oven Kit is a step up from trying to cook pizza on the grill and failing to get the top cooked at the same time as the bottom." — Donna Currie, Product Tester
Best Budget: Presto Pizzazz Plus Rotating Oven
Designed for indoor use
Timer with alert
Top and bottom adjustable heating elements
12 inch max pizza size
Doesn't cook at extreme temperatures
If you prefer cooking your pizza indoors, but you don’t want to heat up your huge oven and your kitchen, this pizza oven does the job—and it’s fun to watch. It cooks pizza in about half the time oven-baking would take, whether you’re making a frozen pizza, or your own homemade version. The pizza tray rotates continuously to bake the pizza evenly without burning. It heats from both the top and bottom, and the heating elements can be controlled separately, so if the crust is browned before the cheese is gooey, you can turn up the top heat and turn down the bottom heat.
A timer turns off the heat automatically, so you can walk away without worrying about a burned pizza, and an audible signal will alert you that your pizza is done. The pizza tray is removable and has a nonstick coating for easy cleaning. This can cook pizzas up to 12-inches in diameter.
You may have noticed a couple of versions of the Presto Pizzazz when browsing for second-hand models. While the packaging and finishes have changed a little bit from time to time, the pizza maker and its controls have stayed essentially the same with every model.
Temperature range: Unspecified | Heat Source: Electric | Max Pizza Size: 12 inches
Best Compact Countertop: Breville Crispy Crust Pizza Maker
Built for indoor use
Reaches higher temperatures than most ovens
Very easy to use
Temperature dial isn't exact
Breville's Smart Oven Pizzaiolo Pizza Oven earned a rave review in our testing, but it's definitely a splurge. The Breville Crispy Crust Pizza Maker strikes a happy balance between your home oven that can’t quite reach high-enough temperatures for authentic pizzas and higher-end outdoor models at a more modest price point than the brand's smart option. Plus, its compact size is great for crowded kitchens.
The countertop pizza maker looks a little like an oversized waffle maker, but inside, you’ll find a 12-inch pizza stone that's heated from both the top and bottom by coils that can reach temperatures up to 660 degrees Fahrenheit. The machine is operated by two knobs on the top. One knob turns it off and on, and the other knob specifies the heat level and thickness of your pizza dough for the best possible results. You can watch your pizza cook through the window on top of the pizza maker to make sure it’s exactly how you like it.
The machine’s outside is finished in powder-coated metal to make cleaning up as simple as wiping off any flour or sauce. The pizza stone inside should be allowed to cool entirely before brushing or scraping off any stuck-on bits. Avoid soaking the stone in water to clean to prevent cracking. While the machine may take up a fair amount of space in your bottom cabinets, it’s convenient enough to stow it when it isn’t in use.
Price-wise, the Crispy Crust Pizza Maker hits a median price point pizza enthusiasts can surely appreciate. If you make one pizza at home every month, this pizza maker will likely pay for itself in less than seven months. But once you get the hang of it, you’ll probably use it far more often than that. For those interested in cooking various doughs in their machine, the pizza maker can also be used for baking naan and other flatbreads.
Temperature range: 660° | Heat Source: Electric | Max Pizza Size: 11 inches
The Ooni Koda Gas-Powered Outdoor Pizza Oven is our top pick because of its one-of-a-kind combination of consistently authentic results, portability, and eye-catching design. If you're looking for an indoor option, we recommend the Breville Smart Oven Pizzaiolo Pizza Oven. It offers versatile temperature control and simple-to-use settings.
What to Look for When Buying a Pizza Oven
Location and Size
Before considering anything else, you should decide where you’re going to put your pizza oven and how much space you have to comfortably use it. If you live in an apartment or home with limited outdoor space, chances are you need a smaller electric indoor oven. Electric ovens typically accommodate up to a 12-inch pizza and take up a moderate amount of counter space while in use.
If you can invest in an outdoor pizza oven, you have a lot more options. Most pizza ovens covered here simply require a stable wood, metal, or stone surface large enough to put your oven on without risk of toppling over. The overall size of the oven will depend largely on how big the cooking area inside the oven is. On average, most pizza ovens can comfortably accommodate a 12- to 13-inch pizza, while larger models can handle up to 16-inch pizzas.
With pizza ovens, you want the hottest one you can afford. Ideally, you want to cook your pizza at 750 degrees Fahrenheit or higher. An authentic Neopolitan pizza is traditionally cooked in a wood-fired oven at a minimum of 800 degrees Fahrenheit and is finished in 60 to 90 seconds. That might sound extreme, but remember that most of those pizzas are made in large, brick wood-fired ovens that churn out hundreds of pizzas a day. You can get pretty close to that at home with several outdoor models designed to burn wood, reaching temperatures from 800 to 900 degrees Fahrenheit.
To help retain heat and achieve those high temperatures, many ovens have an insulated or double-layered ceiling to keep heat concentrated in the oven. Some ovens have dual-heating elements on both the top and bottom of the oven to help regulate the baking of both the crust and toppings.
While many pizza ovens include the claim that heat is distributed evenly throughout the oven, you will likely still need to rotate the pizza once or twice while it bakes—even for pizzas that only cook for a minute or two. It will only take a few tries to get used to handling a pizza peel to move your dough around.
Almost all small and medium-sized pizza ovens on the market today have a streamlined contemporary look with a stainless steel finish and an interior pizza stone baking surface. Some models come in black or grey instead of silver, but most do not have a variety of color options.
The heat source in smaller pizza ovens is most often at the back of the oven, although, in the Camp Chef Italia Artisan Pizza Oven, the heat source is located below the pizza stone. Ovens with an open flame typically allow the flame to extend part of the way across the oven roof to directly heat a greater portion of the pizza. The shape of the oven has a vaulted roof that is meant to imitate the heating pattern of traditional brick ovens.
Pizza ovens are turned on with an ignition knob for gas-powered ovens, which usually includes a dial to control the flame output. Wood- and charcoal-fired ovens use a starter and are match-lit like their grill cousins. Electric pizza ovens are typically set to a specific time or temperature with a dial and have an indicator light to alert you when it has finished preheating.
Several small pizza oven models have collapsible legs and detachable parts for when you want to make pizzas or barbecue at the park, on a camping trip, or at a friend’s backyard cookout. Portable pizza ovens are designed to quickly assemble and disassemble and usually come with a carrying bag to keep everything together. While the oven you choose may be portable, keep in mind that it might not necessarily be light. Some portable ovens are as little as 25 pounds, while some can weigh up to 50 pounds.
Pizza ovens come in a wide range of prices, depending on their versatility or convenience. Small gas-powered outdoor ovens can cost $300 to $400 on the lower end of the spectrum and around $700 for a wood and gas combination oven. You can expect to get years of use out of these ovens, similar to investing in a high-quality grill.
Indoor and electric pizza ovens can also vary widely in price, from the conveniently priced Presto Pizzazz Plus Rotating oven that costs less than $50 to the Breville Smart Oven Pizzaiolo Pizza Oven which runs about $1,000. If that’s a bit on the high end for you, Breville also makes a less expensive pizza maker called the Crispy Crust Pizza Maker, which maxes out around 660 degrees Fahrenheit, but will only set you back about $200.
Most pizza ovens come with a 1-year warranty, while a few offer extended warranties of up to 3 years. You can expect your pizza oven to last for many years, but if you find that it needs repair after the warranty expires, some companies offer replacement parts, and local professional kitchen equipment repair services are likely able to help.
Types of Pizza Ovens
Propane and Gas
Gas-fueled ovens should be used exclusively outdoors, and are generally considered the easiest pizza ovens to use with fantastic results. With a gas connection, the oven heats up faster than a wood oven, reaching the highest required temperatures for excellent pizza-making. Many people prefer the easier cleanup due to less ash and wood debris with a gas pizza oven.
Gas ovens can either be connected easily to a propane tank or a natural gas connection. If opting for a natural gas connection, the gas line should be installed by a professional to avoid any issues.
Wood and Charcoal
Like gas ovens, wood and charcoal ovens should be used outdoors only. For many, nothing compares to the taste of a wood-fired or char-grilled meal. Maple, hickory, and mesquite are popular wood-burning choices, all imparting different smoked flavors to your pizzas and roasted dishes. Once you’ve got the fire going and at the optimal heat, there’s some effort to maintaining it, but most wood-burning model pizza ovens make it easy to add more wood.
Many wood-fired contemporary pizza ovens have interchangeable components that make switching from wood to gas simple. This versatility comes with a cost, though—bringing the price of the ovens up to $700 or more, plus the cost of the additional components. For outdoor cooks who want it all, a hybrid oven is worth the price.
Electric pizza ovens are made for indoor countertop use. There is a heating unit at the bottom of the pizza oven and often a second heat source at the top of the oven. The top heat source increases the overall temperature output and gives you the control to regulate cooking the crust and toppings independently.
If you already have a gas-powered grill, you might consider trying a pizza oven grill insert before buying a separate oven entirely. With the same basic cooking techniques at play, a grill insert is constructed with a pizza stone base and a double-walled roof to retain heat inside the oven. The only difference is that your grill is providing the heat source from below instead of an independent heat source.
Based in Scotland, Ooni is a popular international brand that exclusively makes pizza ovens. In 2012, owners Kristian Tapaninaho and Darina Garland launched a Kickstarter campaign that funded the creation of the first-ever portable pizza oven, and Ooni has only grown from there. Now Ooni has five pizza oven models, and a line of accessories that includes a variety of pizza peels, griddle plates, pizza cutters, carrying bags and covers, and more.
The love of all things outdoor cooking is perfected in the outdoor ovens, grills, and smokers produced by Camp Chef. But Camp Chef doesn’t make casual “roughing it” cookware—its ranges and cooking systems are built for serious cooks who demand the same high-quality equipment that they would find in a high-end kitchen; built for the outdoors. The equipment is in the mid-to-high price range, but will easily last you for many years and miles.
Gozney, founded by pizza enthusiast Tom Gozney, makes both traditional and contemporary pizza ovens for home and commercial kitchens. Based out of the UK, the portable Roccbox has gained international popularity with its ultra-modern design, median price point, and versatility as a hybrid wood or gas-fueled oven. Roccbox comes in a lime green color, in addition to the more ubiquitous grey, for those looking for some colorful expression while churning out excellent piping hot pizzas.
While not as widely known as some small kitchen appliance brands, Presto has a wide range of convenient countertop cooking appliances in niches that other brands don’t always provide, including canning kits and cookers, indoor smokers, and turkey fryers. Beginning in 1905, Presto made its name producing pressure canners and, eventually, the first “saucepan-style pressure cooker.” Today, Presto continues to find new ways to create kitchen appliances at affordable prices for almost any household.
If you’re a coffee enthusiast, you probably know Breville as the luxury brand of home café appliances, but its list of kitchen appliances doesn’t stop there. Breville has branched out to create an impressive line of countertop machines, including food processors, juicers, griddles, bread and ice cream makers, and technologically advanced wine decanters. The uniform brushed stainless steel finish creates a consistent look across their entire product line, which is chocked-full of premium equipment.
Onlyfire has created a small range of products focused on taking your current grilling equipment and making it more adaptable. Its products include pizza oven inserts and kits, rotisserie motors and attachments, fire pit parts and materials, and grill accessories for a wide variety of grill types. Most of its products are reasonably priced for outdoor cooking enthusiasts looking to add some special gear to their collection without going overboard.
Pizzas ovens have the benefit of extremely high heat, which makes it easier to clean your pizza oven when you’re finished cooking. Say that some cheese melted off the side of your pizza while it was baking—the high-temperature oven will likely incinerate any bits left inside the oven. Once the oven has cooled enough to handle the pizza stone, you’ll simply need to wipe it off and return it to the oven. If there is an especially tough mess left behind, you may need to gently scrub it out with a soft metal grill brush while the oven is still warm. At no point should you soak the pizza stone in water or wash it in the dishwasher. Stones are sensitive to water, which will make them brittle and prone to cracking. The outside of your oven can be washed with soapy water and a sponge after it has been turned off and cooled.
Some pizza ovens come with accessories to make your pizza making easier; in other cases, you may want to pick up additional accessories. First, you’ll want to make sure you can judge the temperature of your pizza oven. If you’re using an outdoor oven, check and see if your oven has a built-in thermometer. If not, you should pick up an infrared thermometer to easily and safely take the temperature of the inside of the oven without having to reach inside the oven.
A peel may seem intimidating if you’ve never used one before, but they’re much easier to handle than you may imagine—and a must for inserting and removing your pizza from an oven. Many ovens come with a peel made to fit the specific size of that oven. Peels are made of wood or metal and can be perforated to help clear excess flour from the bottom of your pie. There is also a smaller round peel designed to turn your pizza from inside the oven.
When your pizza is cooked and cooled for just a moment, it’s time to slice it up. Pizza cutters come in two main styles: the classic pizza cutting wheel and the rocking pizza cutter. The rocking cutter is usually a little sharper than a wheel cutter and can slice perfectly even slices. Unfortunately, it can only cut pizzas as large as it is long, and can get unwieldy or difficult to store over 12 inches. The cutting wheel is compact, less expensive, and can slice through pizzas of any size. You’ll want to pay attention to how evenly you’re slicing your pizza, and you may need to use a little more force to get through thick crusts or heavy toppings.
How hot does a pizza oven get?
Some pizza ovens claim to reach temperatures of over 900 degrees Fahrenheit. These ovens are typically gas-fired, although some wood-fired ovens can also reach very high temperatures. Most outdoor pizza ovens heat up to temperatures from 700 to 800 degrees Fahrenheit. Most indoor electric pizza ovens heat up to temperatures from 600 to 750 degrees Fahrenheit.
How does a pizza oven work?
Pizza ovens are built differently than conventional home and restaurant ovens. They are typically compact, with a stone base and a domed roof. The stone base retains heat to help cook the bottom of the pizza easily, while the tight domed roof conducts heat over and around the top of the pizza to promote even cooking. The design of a pizza oven is meant to retain and optimize as much heat as possible, which makes it cook at temperatures much hotter than conventional ovens.
While some pizza ovens may have a removable door on the front to help retain heat, many do not. Pizza ovens are able to maintain their high temperatures by keeping the front opening relatively small. The high oven temperature makes it possible to cook multiple pizzas in quick succession without losing much heat between pizzas.
Pizza ovens are heated in a variety of ways, including propane gas, wood, charcoal-fired, or electric. Most pizza ovens built for home use are made for the outdoors because it’s generally safer to use higher-heat equipment outdoors.
What can you cook in a pizza oven?
Pizza ovens are obviously made for cooking pizzas at very high temperatures, but they’re more versatile than you might expect. Most pizza ovens come with temperature controls making it possible to cook other foods at high temperatures without scorching them. This can be ideal for anyone interested in baking breads, like sourdough and focaccia and dough-based pastries, that respond well to higher-temperature ovens like those found in professional bakeries.
These high-temperature ovens are also great for quickly roasting vegetables, as well as meats, including chicken, steaks, ribs, and sausages. Side dishes and meats that can be cooked in a cast iron or ceramic skillet, are ideal for cooking in a pizza oven. Foods with excessive oils and fats should not be cooked directly on the surface of the oven to avoid grease seeping into the stone. Many people enjoy the smoked flavor that wood-fired pizza ovens impart to the meats and vegetables in the oven. Try a variety of hardwoods to see which smoked flavor you like the best. Good options include maple, oak, walnut, hickory, and ash.
What is a pizza oven stone made of?
Most traditional pizza stones are made with clay or ceramic that has been fired at high temperatures and can retain and withstand the heat of the ovens. The insulation properties of clay stones are ideal, but the stones themselves must be treated with care to avoid cracking.
Oven stones are also made of cast iron and cordierite, which can withstand more wear and tear than traditional clay and ceramic stones. Regardless of which stone material you choose, almost all of the options are heavy and require special care when cleaning.
Why Trust The Spruce Eats?
Donna Currie is a food writer, product tester, and author of the cookbook Make Ahead Bread. She's made more than her fair share of pizza—in the oven, on grills, and with dedicated pizza makers—and personally tested the Breville Smart Oven Pizzaiolo Pizza Oven, Ooni Karu 12 Multi-Fuel Pizza Oven, and Onlyfire Pizza Oven Kit for this roundup—in addition to some pizza stones if you're looking for one of those.
This roundup was updated by Jenny Kellerhals, who also wrote the accompanying pizza oven buying guide. After a decade in NYC pastry kitchens, Jenny has finally learned how to balance yeasted dough recipes and baking intuition to perfect her favorite pizza dough. Since she lives in a second-floor walk-up apartment in Queens, she thinks the Breville Crispy Crust Pizza Maker is just fabulous.