For pizza lovers who like to make pizza from scratch, we are always looking to improve our pizza-making skills. While the result of the pizza will depend on the recipe and how you make it, the oven that you use also plays a large part in making pizzas.
There are different types of pizza ovens: brick pizza ovens, convection pizza ovens, conveyor pizza ovens, deck pizza ovens, and countertop pizza ovens. These pizza ovens are specifically designed to cook pizza.
This article will talk about the different types of pizza ovens and the different fuel sources they use. Pizza ovens are not just for pizzerias. You can definitely buy a pizza oven to level up your pizza-making. If you want to find out which type of pizza oven is for you, whether for personal or commercial use, read on!
What Is A Pizza Oven?
A pizza oven is an appliance that is specifically designed to cook pizza. These ovens are not like regular domestic ovens and they typically have a higher temperature setting than regular ovens. Traditional pizza ovens are also bigger and are not usually placed in residential kitchens.
The high-temperature of pizza ovens can cook pizza in about 90 seconds or less. These pizza ovens can also give the pizza a crispier crust than if it were to be cooked in a regular oven.
Traditional pizza ovens use wood or coal for fuel and this is how they get their high temperatures. These pizza ovens are also usually made of brick but there are also pizza ovens made with stone and even stainless steel.
Types Of Pizza Ovens
There are different kinds of pizza ovens that are both suitable for commercial and residential kitchens. These pizza ovens come in different sizes and some come as a standalone pizza oven. For pizza lovers who like to make handcrafted pizzas, small and portable pizza ovens have emerged over the years so you can create authentic wood-fired pizza at home. Let’s take a look at the different styles of pizza oven.
Brick ovens have been said to be around since the Ancient Roman period. During the ancient civilization, brick ovens were used to make bread and other foods. These ovens are typically domed-shaped with enclosed heated spaces and are made with clay.
Brick ovens were also present during the Medieval period and the Renaissance and Industrial Era. It was during the Renaissance Era that Italy and other parts of Europe used brick ovens to bake their pizzas. Now, traditional brick pizza ovens are widely used all over the world.
Brick pizza ovens are typically made with refractory bricks, also known as fire bricks. These bricks can withstand high temperatures up to 1800 degrees Fahrenheit without cracking or deteriorating which is why they are used in brick ovens. The cooking surface of a brick oven is usually covered with fire bricks, clay, or ceramic tiles for heat retention and added insulation.
Brick ovens use wood or coal as their fuel source and the temperature can go as high as 900 to 1000 degrees Fahrenheit. This exceeds the highest temperature setting of a regular oven which is 500 to 550 degrees Fahrenheit.
This high temperature that a brick oven produces allows for the pizza to be cooked faster but still produce a crispy crust with a moist interior. Wood-fired pizza ovens also produce that famous char that Neapolitan pizzas have. Aside from pizzas and bread, other kinds of food can be cooked in a brick oven such as roasted meat and vegetables.
Nowadays, traditional brick pizza ovens are not limited to commercial pizzerias. Pizza lovers are now also able to build their own brick ovens at home. There are also pizza oven kits that are being sold if you do not want to build your own brick oven.
A convection pizza oven does not have as rich of a history as brick ovens do but it definitely gets the job done of cooking pizzas. Unlike brick ovens that use wood or coal as their fuel source, convection ovens use gas or electric heating.
Convection ovens have a standard temperature range of 425 to 500 degrees Fahrenheit and can cook pizza in about 5 to 7 minutes. Convection ovens come with fans that circulate hot air inside the oven’s interior.
Since convection ovens circulate hot air, the pizza is cooked on all sides all at once. This also cooks the pizza faster than a conventional oven would.
Unlike brick ovens, convection ovens are more compact and do not need to be built by yourself. Convection ovens are also cheaper than brick ovens and many people are now able to buy a convection oven for their home or for a small pizza place.
Deck Pizza Ovens
As the name implies, deck pizza ovens have enclosed baking chambers that have multiple shelves or decks. For large pizza establishments that need to cook a large number of pizzas each day, a deck pizza oven is often their go-to oven.
Like convection ovens, deck ovens also use gas or electricity as their fuel source. Convection ovens bake the food by transferring the heat from the deck to the food.
Deck ovens are typically made of stainless steel however, some deck ovens have stone-lined ceilings and surfaces. Stone hearth deck ovens can bake pizza faster and produce a charred crispy crust.
Deck ovens have a temperature range of 200 to 500 degrees Fahrenheit and can also bake and roast different kinds of food. What’s good about deck ovens is that each deck can be programmed individually. This way, you will be able to control each deck’s temperature controls. You will also not be limited to cooking pizza on the deck oven.
Deck ovens typically cook pizza between 5 to 10 minutes but deck ovens do need to be preheated for about 60 minutes.
Conveyor pizza ovens use steel mesh conveyor belts to move the pizza through a heated chamber. This cooking chamber blows hot air from its top and bottom heat sources to cook the pizza evenly.
Conveyor ovens have two kinds: full-sized freestanding units and countertop industrial units. The countertop conveyor oven is good for smaller pizza establishments that have limited space. Some conveyor oven models can be stackable for up to three units which is also good to save space.
Conveyor ovens also use gas or electric burners as their power source. You will find some major U.S. pizza chains use conveyor pizza ovens as these are reliable and convenient to use.
The downside with conveyor pizza ovens is you really can’t achieve authentic Italian-style pizza with them. Conveyor pizza ovens have a temperature range of 400 to 600 degrees Fahrenheit and these units have digital controls that can give you a precise temperature.
Countertop Pizza Ovens
These types of pizza ovens are small and compact and are meant to be placed on a kitchen countertop or other flat surfaces. For pizza lovers who occasionally make pizza from scratch, they may opt for a countertop pizza oven as it does not take up so much space.
Most countertop pizza ovens use electrical heating for their power source but there are also other models that run on wood, gas, or both. Since these types of ovens are designed specifically for baking pizzas, most countertop pizza ovens can reach a maximum temperature of at least 750 degrees Fahrenheit. Most countertop pizza ovens are also standalone ovens and some are portable that can be brought anywhere.
Gas Pizza Oven vs. Wood Oven Vs. Coal Ovens vs. Electric Ovens
As you can see, pizza ovens have different fuel sources. Their fuel source will depend on their make and their type. Traditional brick ovens use wood or coal as their fuel source while non-traditional pizza ovens will often have gas or electric heating systems. Let’s take a look at the different fuel sources of pizza ovens.
Gas Pizza Oven
As you may have probably guessed, gas pizza ovens use natural gas or propane to bake the pizza. Gas ovens typically heat up fairly quickly and can provide a more consistent temperature.
You can also have more precise temperature control with gas ovens. The knobs or dials on gas ovens can allow you to have a more consistent pizza.
Gas ovens are also easier to use because you can control the temperature by adjusting the settings via the oven’s knob or dial. If you want a Neapolitan-style pizza, you would have to get a wood-fired pizza oven instead of an oven powered by gas.
Wood-fired pizza ovens use wood as their power source. Wood-fired pizza ovens typically have a temperature range of 850 to 900 degrees Fahrenheit. The high temperatures that wood ovens can achieve cook the pizza quicker and can produce a crispy crust.
Traditional wood-fired pizza ovens are usually made of bricks with stone or clay cooking surfaces to retain the heat. Brick pizza ovens fall under this category and these types of ovens produce pizzas with a distinct smokey flavor.
These types of ovens are large outdoor ovens so ample space is needed if you are planning on building one. Wood-fired brick ovens are also installed in most Italian pizzeria kitchens to provide their customers with authentic Italian pizza.
Nowadays, portable wood-fired ovens, like Ooni, have emerged. These small, modernized wood-fired ovens give pizza lovers the ability to cook pizza at home even without having to install a brick oven.
Like traditional wood-fired ovens, the shape of coal furnaces is typically a dome. Some people use charcoal for their brick ovens instead of wood as coal can cook at higher temperatures than wood does.
Charcoal pizza ovens have a temperature range of at least 800 to 1000 degrees Fahrenheit. This is a lot hotter than the maximum temperature of wood-fired ovens.
Pizzerias that use coal-fired pizza ovens use anthracite coal which has fewer impurities, a longer burn time, and a higher carbon content. The pizzas are cooked using the “fire-in-the-oven” technique in coal ovens. This technique produces a sizable flame on top of the bed of coals and the oven is heated to an extremely high temperature. As a result, the pizzas can be cooked quickly.
These types of ovens use electrical heating components to create heat and cook the pizza. Electric ovens are practical to use as they can be plugged into an electric socket if needed to be used. The downside is, if there is no electricity, it is also impossible to use an electric oven unless you have a generator that has enough power to run an electric oven.
Like gas ovens, electric ovens can also provide precise and equal heat distribution as well as accurate temperature controls. Some people prefer using electric ovens, especially indoors as no open flames and other dangerous fuels are involved. Like with gas ovens, you probably won’t be able to achieve a smokey flavor with your pizza.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Pizza Ovens Worth It?
If you like to make pizza from scratch and like the flavor of a charred and smokey pizza, then we’d say yes, a pizza oven is worth it. Pizza ovens have a higher temperature setting than regular ovens which is ideal when making pizza.
There are a lot of smaller and portable pizza ovens that use a wood, gas, or electric heating system to cook pizza. Some non-traditional pizza ovens even have a multi-fuel heating system which can be convenient if you don’t want multiple pizza ovens at home. – If you are planning on opening a pizzeria, a pizza oven is definitely a must.
Which Type Of Oven Is The Best For Pizza?
This will definitely depend on what kind of pizza you like to eat. For a Neapolitan-style pizza, a wood-fired pizza oven is the best option. If you are more of a New York pizza lover, then a gas oven is the best option for you.
Brick pizza ovens, conveyor pizza ovens, convection pizza ovens, deck pizza ovens, and countertop pizza ovens are designed to make pizzas. Traditional pizza ovens, like brick ovens, use wood or coal as their fuel source. Non-traditional pizza ovens often use gas or electric heating system.
It is known that pizzerias use pizza ovens to cook their pizzas. But, pizza ovens are not just for commercial use. There are different types of pizza ovens and some of these can be used in residential homes. If you have any questions, let us know via the comment section on our website!