Cooking shows on TV and magazines have driven up the allure of buying a pizza oven for homeowners. A pizza oven can enhance your outdoor get-together and spice up your eating experience. Although the desire to buy one can be strong, pinpointing the right kind can present challenges. This is why I have compiled a list of all pizza oven types and pointed out their strong points to narrow your search criteria.
The best types of pizza ovens you are bound to find in the market include wood-fired ovens, gas (LP or Propane) ovens, electric ovens and pallet oven.
These kinds of pizza ovens utilize wood fuel for cooking. The wood-fired ovens are further subdivided into two; White ovens and black ovens. Black ovens utilize burning wood to heat up inside the chamber and cook your pizza. The chamber can also be heated using burning wood or coal, which is later swept out and the pizza introduced inside to cook. In white ovens, however, there is no burning wood or coal inside the chamber. Instead, heat is introduced into the chamber by means of heat transfer from an alternative combustion chamber. This means that the oven will remain clean from ash, hence the name, white oven.
Different pizza types require different cooking times and temperature, for example, the margarita pizza which is the base of all pizzas requires less cooking time. Margarita pizza, essentially, consists of the dough rolled round, tomato and mozzarella cheese. Adding toppings, for instance, chicken, fish, ham and so on, changes the pizza name and changes the required cooking time and temperature. Depending on the brand, A wood-fired pizza ovens can heat up to temperatures of over 1000 degrees meaning your pizza will cook in 2 to 5 minutes depending on the dough thickness and toppings added.
Wood-fired oven imparts a unique flavor to your pizza that's hard to replicate with other pizza oven types because of the even heat distribution and smoke. Wood-fired pizza oven is also advantageous to health-conscious individuals who like to top their pizzas with only fruits and vegetable. Due to the oven's shorter cooking time, the nutrients and antioxidants are retained in the pizza.
Cooking with wood-fired pizza oven also adds authenticity and character to your pizza. Most people's taste buds are aroused by characteristics of food such as chars and burns. The wood-fired oven can impart the chars and burns people so desire.
The wood-fired pizza oven is advantageous because you can use it for various purposes including roasting meat, baking bread, drying wet wood and so on. The oven can present challenges when using as you just need to manually load the wood into the chamber, heat it up, incorporate your pizza and get it out when cooked. But it's a fun activity to engage in. Maintenance is easy as it doesn't need cleaning with detergents each day. You just need to remove the ash and sweep it clean. The drawback to wood-fired pizza oven is that you need to build it from scratch as opposed to the electric and gas types that can be bought ready to use. Also, you can't quite control the heat so you might end up with an undercooked pizza if temperatures are too low and burnt pizza if temperatures are extremely high. Lucky for us, more and more well-known brick oven brands are coming out with their version of already-assembled, stainless steel ovens. These ovens take less time to heat up and reach just around 700 degrees, allowing you to make pizzas for dinner just anytime of the day. These stainless steel pizza ovens are generally muc cheaper too.
The gas pizza oven is the newer, innovative kind that accords you the convenience of not having to encounter smoke. It utilizes gas to distribute heat in the chamber. With this oven, you can control the cooking temperature, so excessive burning and undercooking are greatly minimized. It comes with additional features like double heat resistant glass, high-quality heat resistant materials, internal halogen light that illuminates your pizza enabling you to see how it's cooking. It's not permanently fixed meaning you can move it here and there. It comes with an wide door handle that's easy to handle and open plus sufficient cooking space that allows you to incorporate large pizzas. Heating time is greatly reduced, usually 16 minutes or less.
The radiant heat allows you to cook your pizzas in record time. The cooking temperatures can reach up to 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit enabling you to roast or bake other products like meats, bread or even boil water for different home use. The gas pizza oven allows your pizza to cook just right because you can adjust the temperature depending on the thickness of your dough and toppings incorporated.
The materials used to make the exteriors of the oven are heat resistant meaning the risk of getting burnt is eliminated. The intense and constant radiation heat is maintained by the presence of high-quality ceramic slab hearth and ceiling. This oven pretty much suits the modern kitchen designs because it comes in different sizes and beautiful designs. Its automatic cooking temperature after adjustment will save you the hassle of having to go to re-adjust firewood as it happens with wood-fired ovens. It's also easy to clean since it's made of stainless steel oven. The gas pizza oven, however, lacks a sense of authenticity and doesn't impart unique flavor and characteristics in your pizza.
These stainless-steel ovens are more modern, user-friendly and the most common pizza ovens found in homes. With newer versions coming out every year, they are more and more reliable and easy to manage heat sources. They usually come with top and bottom heating element. Because these ovens are electronically controlled, you can turn up one of the heating element without affecting the temperature of the other. This means your pizza cooks exactly how you want it.
Electric pizza ovens are compact and perfectly fit in every kitchen. You only need to plug when you want to use and store them without the need of too much space. They have efficient heat sources meaning they heat up upon switching on. They also cool off faster when turned off and unplugged. Electric pizza ovens save time and energy since the energy is only utilized when cooking the pizza instead of heating up the entire oven. Electric pizza ovens have excellent thermal qualities which, ideally, mean that you will not get undercooked or burnt pizza.
Due to their innovation, they are relatively inexpensive compared with other oven types. Although they can't match the wood-fired types regarding authenticity, character, and unique flavor, it’s the easiest oven to use - just plug, let it heat and incorporate your pizza. It's also easier to maintain because of the stainless-steel material and small size.
This stainless-steel oven is the dream choice for any pizza enthusiasts since it's eco-friendly and economical. This pizza oven kind uses pellets fuel to cook your pizza. Pellets are made of wood sawdust and compressed into ovular cylinders without any bonding agent. Wood pellets light quickly, burn hot, and emit little smoke and soot.
Using pellets to power your oven is almost like using wood, so it's an ancient, traditional and natural cooking method. Because the humidity level in pellets is low, about 6% to 8%, they have a slightly higher calorie yield compared to conventional wood. Pellet-fired oven eliminates the need to manually insert firewood into the chamber when firing it up and substituted by the burner which loads the pellets automatically, dosing the required amount for the cooking. This means that you only burn what is required, hence making them economical.
Pellets are advantageous since they come in bags that can be stored anywhere without taking up much space and rendering the place dirty. The pellets also add unique flavor and characteristic like chars and burns to your pizza. This oven also produces little ash making maintenance easier. The oven can be used to roast meats, bake bread and heat water and other foods. Compared with the wood-fired pizza oven, it takes a lot less time to heat up.
Overall, choosing a pizza oven for your home boils down to personal preferences. Electric ovens tend to produce pizzas that look and taste almost the same but are more convenient and relatively inexpensive to run. Gas ovens give distinctive pizza looks, tastes, and flavors every time, which is ideal for providing customized products. Wood-fired ovens bring about character, authenticity and a sense of homely feel. However, you might have to wait for hours for it to heat up. The pellet oven represents the modern style of cooking pizzas and comes in an array of innovative features. It can make your whole cooking experience easier.