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The best pizza ovens you can buy

Business Insider

  • A high-quality pizza oven achieves high temperatures with minimal preheating, can cook mouth-watering pizzas of several sizes, and requires minimal clean-up.
  • The Gozney Roccbox Pizza Oven is our top pick because it’s easy to assemble and transport, reaches temps of up to 930-degrees Fahrenheit, and cooks delicious pizzas with crispy, flavorful crusts in 60 seconds.

Wouldn’t it be awesome to have a brick pizza oven in your backyard? You could host pizza parties and dish-out custom gourmet pizzas to guests with minimal effort. Unfortunately, not all of us have the funds or space for a true brick pizza oven. Luckily, there are several affordable pizza ovens that reach the same high temperatures without taking up dedicated space in your backyard.

There are essentially two main types of outdoor pizza ovens: gas and wood-fired. Gas ovens typically rely on propane and provide consistent fuel throughout the cooking process. Wood-fried ovens are a bit more temperamental. You need to keep a close watch on the wood — usually pellets — to ensure it’s getting plenty of airflow and doesn’t need to be replenished. Many purists claim wood-fired pizzas taste better. Charcoal can also often be used in wood-fired ovens. And, some ovens, including our top pick, offer both wood and gas options.

We also considered some indoor options, which are useful to have on hand when your dough balls are ready to go but the weather outside isn’t cooperating. However, don’t expect to find many indoor ovens that both reach 800-plus degrees Fahrenheit and don’t cost thousands of dollars.

When cooking pizza at high temperatures, you need to be careful that you aren’t using as much water in your dough. This is because the crust is cooking so quickly that there isn’t much time for the water to evaporate. If you use too much, the toppings will cook much faster than the dough, and you’ll have trouble rotating the pizza during the cooking process. 

This leads us to another tip: rotate your pizza. The side of the pizza closer to the heating element will bake faster. So, about halfway through the cooking process, use your pizza peel and maybe some tongs to rotate the pizza 180 degrees. With such high temperatures, practice grilling safety like you would with any outdoor grill.

For more tips on making outstanding pizza at home and what tools you’ll need to do it, check out our guide to the best pizza-making tools you can buy.

While researching the best pizza ovens, we looked at countless ratings and reviews of dozens of models from experts and buyers. Our guide features ovens that are durable, easy to use, and cook top-quality pizzas.

Here are the best pizza ovens you can buy:

The best pizza oven overall

Williams Sonoma

The Roccbox Pizza Oven from Gozney uses gas or wood to reach temperatures up to 930 degrees Fahrenheit in 30 minutes or less, so you can cook pizzas faster.

The Roccbox Pizza Oven is a powerful oven for such a small footprint. With the legs folded up, the oven is only 21 inches by 16.5 inches by 11 inches, so it’s small enough for you to pack and bring with you to parties or camping, though it does weigh almost 45 pounds. Most impressively, the oven gets up to 932 degrees Fahrenheit. Due to the high temps, the oven incinerates any debris so there’s virtually no clean-up. 

The oven comes with attachments for wood-burning and gas heating, an extensive user manual with recipes, a high-quality metal pizza peel, and a one-year warranty. The body of the oven is durable stainless steel covered with a safe-touch silicone jacket. A thermometer is built into the oven so you can easily tell how hot it is.

I used the Roccbox to make dozens of pizzas. I was impressed with how I could make delicious creations in about 60 seconds. I hosted a party where I made 12 pizzas in under an hour using this oven. And, the guests were impressed with the results.

Since the flames come from the back, you need to rotate the pizza halfway through, but the metal peel made that task easy. Overall, the Roccbox has improved the quality of my homemade pizzas.

J. Kenji López-Alt, the esteemed food journalist and culinary expert at Serious Eats, recommended the Roccbox because it cooked pizzas well when he tested it using gas, wood, and charcoal. He appreciated how it came almost fully assembled, reached top temperatures in 30 minutes, and the exterior didn’t get dangerously hot. However, he thought it was quite expensive and hard to transport. 

Real Homes recommended this model because it "produces perfect pizzas on demand." The reviewer found it took a few tries to fire it up in a breeze, and getting up to temperature took a while. But, overall, he was happy with the attractive design and value.

The Roccbox has a 4.6-star average customer rating on Williams Sonoma’s website. The most common pros noted by buyers are that the oven is well-designed, the right size, durable, easy to use, and easy to clean. Several commenters chose the Roccbox after looking at more expensive alternatives. In addition to making pizza, buyers were impressed with how this oven handles steak, salmon, pork chops, and roasted vegetables. One reviewer suggested that you pick up a cast iron grill pan that fits this unit since the oven opening is somewhat narrow. — James Brains

Pros: Heats up to 932 degrees Fahrenheit in about 30 minutes, easy to assemble, self-cleaning, sleek design, great for more than just pizza

Cons: Expensive, 12-inch maximum pizza size, heavy

The best budget outdoor pizza oven

Amazon

If you are looking for an affordable outdoor pizza grill, consider the Pizzacraft PizzaQue Portable Outdoor Pizza Oven, which can turn out gourmet pies in about four minutes.

The Pizzacraft PizzaQue Portable Outdoor Pizza Oven makes patio pizza-making an affordable option for any family. The oven is only 18-inches round and 12-inches high, but it fits pizzas up to 14 inches in diameter and can reach temperatures over 700 degrees Fahrenheit, using a standard propane tank. The oven weighs less than 26 pounds, which makes it easy to transport. Pizzacraft offers a 30-day return policy and a one-year limited warranty.

NEPA Pizza Review recommended the PizzaQue because it was amazed by the quality of pizzas it produced. The reviewer used it to help out at an outdoor charity event and made 65 pizzas in five hours. He noted that 8-inch pizzas took about four minutes and 12-inch pizzas were closer to six minutes. Event attendees remarked on the high quality of the pizzas — crisp on the bottom with gooey cheese on top. The main negative he touched on was that the temperature drops with strong wind gusts, by as much as 50 degrees. 

Cooking Pots ‘n’ Pans, Kitchenette Jen, BBQ Smarts, Indoor Grill Source, and Stones and Pizza also recommended this model.

Around 90% of the Amazon buyers who reviewed the Pizzacraft PizzaQue Portable Outdoor Pizza Oven gave it 4 or 5 stars. One user was impressed that it only took 15 minutes to preheat the oven. He used a long strip of aluminum foil to cover the opening when preheating and cooking to block off heat loss, though he still needed to rotate the pizza every couple of minutes. Others compared the pizzas they were able to make to artisan pies you might get at a restaurant. — James Brains

Pros: Affordable, preheats to 700 degrees Fahrenheit quickly, built-in thermometer, lightweight, fits 14-inch pizzas

Cons: Poorly insulated

The best wood-fired pizza oven

Amazon

Featuring a wood-pellet heat source, portable design, and efficient heating and cooking, the Ooni 3 Pizza Oven is ideal for wood-fired pizza lovers.

The Ooni 3 Pizza Oven is made of 430-grade stainless steel for long-term durability. The body features ceramic insulation to maintain heat efficiency. This model is heated by wood pellets, though a gas burner attachment is optional. The oven has a striking appearance with a large chimney for optimal airflow. It fits pizzas up to 13 inches in diameter. 

Busted Wallet recommended the Ooni 3 because of its excellent performance and value. The reviewer was impressed with the design and liked that the oven is easy to transport and set up. He also appreciated how hot the oven gets. His only complaints were that there was discoloration of the steel after the first use and cooking at extreme temperatures took some time to master. 

The Ooni 3 is one of three pizza ovens recommended by Serious Eats. J. Kenji López-Alt found the oven got up to temperature in as little as 15 minutes. A 20-pound bag of wood pellets was enough to make 50 pizzas. He didn’t like that you had to keep an eye on the pellets to make sure the airflow was just right and that they weren’t jammed in the metal tube.

About 82% of the buyers who reviewed the Ooni 3 Pizza Oven on Amazon gave it a positive rating. A buyer who also owns a previous version noted that the Ooni 3 has better insulation for more efficient cooking, an improved hopper for better airflow, and the flames are directed to the roof of the oven rather than directly onto the pizza. Other reviewers found the oven produces delicious pizzas with crispy crusts. However, one buyer warned you must rotate the pizza every 20 to 30 seconds and keep a close eye on the pellets to ensure they are burning properly — echoing what López-Alt said.

Due to a recent name change, you might find the Ooni 3 marketed as the Uuni 3. The company changed its name to Ooni in 2018 so buyers would have a better chance at pronouncing it correctly. — James Brains

Pros: Excellent value, heats quickly to 900 degrees Fahrenheit, portable, produces delicious pizzas

Cons: Have to babysit it to ensure the pellets are burning properly, somewhat of a learning curve for new users

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jamesbrains55@gmail.com (James Brains)

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