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Best Outdoor Pizza Ovens of 2024

Outdoor Pizza Oven
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updated: July 9, 2024
edited by Amber Katz

As summer rolls in, bringing with it long days perfect for gathering family and friends, I found myself craving something beyond the usual BBQ cookout. This year, I switched things up and brought the Italian tradition of pizza parties to my backyard. I tested and compared a variety of the best outdoor pizza ovens available in 2024, each promising to transform my gatherings into culinary adventures. From wood-fired classics to sleek gas-powered models, I discovered the top options that will elevate your summer entertaining and make every get-together a slice of perfection.

My top outdoor pizza oven picks

Best large outdoor pizza oven: Ooni Koda 2 Max Gas Powered Pizza Oven

Ooni Koda 2 Max Gas Powered Pizza Oven

Ooni Koda 2 Max Gas Powered Pizza Oven

With a spacious 24-inch cooking area, you can effortlessly cook two 12-inch pizzas or three 10-inch pizzas at once—perfect for pizza parties. The two independently controlled temperature zones allow for versatile cooking, while the unique tapered flames and Ooni G2 Gas Technology™ ensure even heat distribution and efficient cooking. The digital temperature hub provided instant readings, so we always knew the perfect moment to launch our pizzas, making the entire process seamless and fun. I’m a proponent of data when it comes to baking, especially when making pizzas. The stone temperature and internal temperature digital display is an excellent feature.

Specifications

  • Type/fuel: Gas (propane tank or natural gas line)
  • Cooking area: 24 inches wide x 24 inches deep
  • Temperature: Top: 950 degrees Fahrenheit (750 degrees Fahrenheit in 30 minutes)
  • Size: 31.5 inches x 28.43 inches x 16.85 inches 
  • Weight: 95 pounds
  • Number of pizzas: Two 12-inch pizzas or three 10-inch pizzas
  • Price at time of publish: $999

Pros:

  • Extra large cooking area
  • Even heat distribution and digital temperature hub for precision control

Cons:

  • Larger size means you’ll need room to store when not in use
  • Gas only, so if you are looking for wood-fire taste you’ll need to look elsewhere

The bottom line:

If you want to make many pizzas at once, this is one of the best options thanks to a 24-inch cooking area and gas fuel source.

Best luxury pizza oven: Fontana NAPOLI Hybrid Gas & Wood Oven — New Gen Margherita

Fontana NAPOLI Hybrid Gas & Wood Oven — New Gen Margherita

Fontana NAPOLI Hybrid Gas & Wood Oven — New Gen Margherita

The Napoli outdoor oven, with a spacious 20-inch x 24-inch cooking area and a high-performance 54,000 BTU burner, offers 480 square inches of efficient, precise heat that cooks pizza in a variety of styles as well as countless other family favorite meals. Even with the extra large cooking area, the Napoli gets up to 750 degrees Fahrenheit in about 30 minutes. Even more impressive is the super fast rebound time when getting back up to temperature for the next pizza. The high temperatures (750 to 900 degrees Fahrenheit) are perfect for Neapolitan pizzas. The heat from the stone (especially the Saputo stone upgrade) is also perfect for New York City or East Coast-style pizza, which is my favorite. It’s easy enough to keep the bottom stone in the 600 to 650 degrees Fahrenheit sweet spot.

Designed for modern outdoor kitchens, the Napoli features sleek alloy handles, a durable metal gas knob, and a safe-to-touch exterior. The fully removable burner assembly and strategically placed oxygenation ports ensure easy maintenance and improved efficiency. Certified for one-inch clearance to combustibles, this oven fits into tight spaces safely. With energy efficiency, enhanced burner systems, and compatibility with premium Saputo stones, the Napoli offers an exceptional cooking experience for pizzas, roasts, steaks, vegetables, and more. This is a luxury item and you’ll know it from the first pizza you make, and well beyond the 100th pizza party. Crafted in Italy since 1978, the Napoli is built to endure all weather conditions with a solid welded bent-steel dome and advanced insulation for optimal heat retention.

Specifications

  • Type/fuel: Propane, wood, natural gas (with conversion kit)
  • Cooking area: 24 inches wide x 20 inches deep
  • Temperature: 900 degrees Fahrenheit (750 degrees Fahrenheit in 30 minutes or less)
  • Size: 31 inches wide x 33 inches deep x 24 inches tall (47 inches with chimney)
  • Weight: 220 pounds
  • Number of pizzas: One pizza up to 20 inches, two 10-inch pizzas
  • Price at time of publish: $3,999 (optional portable cart and pizza stone upgrade for additional cost)

Pros:

  • The cooking surface is massive and the interior is spacious but holds temperature efficiently. 
  • Sturdy construction and materials mean this is built to last, and the heat retention keeps the outside of the oven at safe temperatures compared to the 900-degree Fahrenheit interior.
  • Great for Neapolitan-style pizza, New York-/New Jersey-style pizza, and a massive list of other foods like roasts, steaks, veggies, and more.

Cons:

  • Luxury models like this are big which means a commitment to outdoor storage and safe keeping. The Fontana ovens are built for all weather conditions, but you’ll still need an area where the oven and/or cart rest or are stored.

The bottom line:

This is the ultimate outdoor pizza oven for those who are truly dedicated to creating exceptional pizzas at home. From the beautiful design to the massive cooking surface, the materials that retain heat while keeping the exterior safe to the extremely well-thought-out details that improve efficiency, this is the pizza oven you will use for life.

Best budget pizza oven: Pizzello Grande Outdoor 2-Layer Pizza Oven

Pizzello Grande Outdoor 2-Layer Pizza Oven

Pizzello Grande Outdoor 2-Layer Pizza Oven

The Pizzello Grande pizza oven and grill brings authentic wooden smoky flavors to any backyard, using wood, pellets, or charcoal. Heating up to 752 degrees Fahrenheit, it delivers the beautiful crisp crust pizza enthusiasts crave. With 288 square inches of cooking space, it can handle pizzas, side dishes, and veggies simultaneously. It can even roast a whole chicken if you remove the middle rack. The Pizzello Grande's stainless steel handle makes it easy to transport. Plus, it comes with all the essentials—a grill, pizza peel, cordierite pizza stone, and ash baffle—at no extra cost. The standout feature for me (aside from the budget price) is the top level grill. My favorite personal hack with a feature like this is using the grill as a warmer while a second pizza bakes, or reheating a pizza that has cooled a bit.

Specifications

  • Type/fuel: Wood, charcoal, pellet
  • Cooking area: 12 inches wide x 12 inches deep
  • Temperature: Top: 752 degrees Fahrenheit in 20 minutes
  • Size: 21.3 inches x 12.4 inches x 25.8 inches 
  • Weight: 24.02 pounds
  • Number of pizzas: One 12-inch pizza (additional top level grill rack)
  • Price at time of publish: $109.99

Pros:

  • Two cooking levels so you can have multiple meals going at once
  • It’s one of the lowest-price models available that still provides performance.

Cons:

  • Lower top temperature and longer rebound time (due to large inside volume)
  • No gas option means you’ll need wood, charcoal, and/or pellets on hand.

The bottom line:

Multiple racks add convenience to outdoor cooking, allowing you to make a pizza and sides at once—and the price is a bargain.

Best wood-fired pizza oven: Gozney Dome

Gozney Dome

Gozney Dome

Make wood-fired cooking easy with the Dome. The versatility is a standout when I look at this model.  Whether roasting, smoking, steaming, or baking, the Dome handles it all with ease, reaching up to 950 degrees Fahrenheit for perfect seared steak, crispy fish, or charred vegetables. “While it isn’t portable, it creates a delicious wood-fired charred crust,” says Leroy Hite, founder of Cutting Edge Firewood

The Dual Fuel model adds convenience with a built-in gas burner, allowing easy switching between wood and gas. (If you do opt for wood, Hite recommends medium-cut pizza wood in 8” splits.) The Dome’s thick stone, dense insulation, and rope-sealed door create the perfect environment for slow roasting, baking bread, or achieving a professional-grade wood-fired flavor in your backyard. With features like a steam injector for lighter, crunchier sourdough, the Dome offers endless culinary potential.

Specifications

  • Type/fuel: Wood-fire and gas-fuel
  • Cooking area: 21.6 inches wide x 18.5 inches deep 
  • Temperature: Top: 950 degrees Fahrenheit 
  • Size: 28.8 inches x 24.8 inches x 26 inches
  • Weight: 128 pounds
  • Number of pizzas: One 16-inch pizza, two to three 10-inch pizzas
  • Price at time of publish: $1999

Pros:

  • Gorgeous visual design and large cooking area
  • Thick stone construction and rope-sealed door help maintain temperature for baking, slow roasting, and more.

Cons:

  • This oven is heavy; you won’t be moving it in and out of the house between uses. It’ll need a weatherproof cover and semi-permanent space outdoors.
  • Double the price point of comparable ovens in this size and performance range

The bottom line:

Though you sacrifice portability with the Gozney Dome, the consistent professional-caliber results are worth the investment for serious pizza lovers and outdoor cooks alike.

Best portable pizza oven: Ooni Koda 12 Gas Powered Pizza Oven

Ooni Koda 12 Gas Powered Pizza Oven

Ooni Koda 12 Gas Powered Pizza Oven

The Ooni Koda 12 offers the ultimate ease and control (compared to wood-fire/pellets) with its gas-fueled design, reaching a scorching 950 degrees Fahrenheit in just 15 minutes. Weighing only 20.4 pounds and fitting in any outdoor space, this oven is as portable as it is powerful. This model outperformed the electric models for best portable for three reasons. It’s lighter, easy to clean, and you don’t need to find an outlet. Aside from making sure you have propane handy, you’re set.

It’s also ready to use right out of the box. Simply flip open the foldable legs, insert the stone baking board, and connect it to a gas tank. The instant gas ignition and heat control dial make cooking a breeze, whether it's pizza, roasted fish, vegetables, or steaks. Wood-fire is great but involves lugging fuel and cleaning/disposing of the fuel. Electric means you can only cook outdoors near a power source or outlet. The Koda 12 allows you to bring your fuel with you with no cleanup. “We like the Ooni Koda because it's compact, with just as much power as its counterparts with chimneys,” says Marceil Van Camp and Katy Knauff, owners of Kamp Social House in Seattle, Washington. “Its size means we can take it camping, and we've even used it while sailing.”

Specifications

  • Type/fuel: Propane gas (tank)
  • Cooking area: 13.2 inches x 13.2 inches
  • Temperature: 950 degrees Fahrenheit in 15 minutes
  • Size: 15.5 inches wide x 24.4 inches deep x 11.7 inches tall
  • Weight: 20.4 pounds
  • Number of pizzas: One 12-inch pizza
  • Price at time of publish: $399

Pros:

  • Light and portable, with a decent-sized cooking area
  • Low price point and great for beginners

Cons:

  • No bottom heating element means you’ll be limited to Neapolitan-style pizzas (light bottom crust, charred top crust).
  • It takes a while for the stone to get fully up to temperature, as opposed to the internal temperature which gets to top temp in 15 minutes.

The bottom line:

If you want to make pizza at home, while camping, visiting friends, etc., this oven is the most portable option that makes great pizzas on the go—but it does take a while to heat up.

Best dual fuel pizza oven: Ooni Karu 16 Multi-Fuel Pizza Oven

Ooni Karu 16 Multi-Fuel Pizza Oven

Ooni Karu 16 Multi-Fuel Pizza Oven

The Ooni Karu 16 oven brings the most versatile Ooni outdoor cooking experience and advanced technology to the pizza party. “I love the Ooni because it is so versatile based on what I'm making and the flavor profile I'm going for,” says Steve Chiappetti, Executive Chef of the Albert restaurant in downtown Chicago, Illinois. “You can cook over natural wood, wood chips or hook up propane. The variety of heat sources gives the user a lot of flexibility in controlling temperature and flavor.”

With multiple fuel options, you can cook with wood or charcoal out of the box or use gas with the optional gas burner for a low-maintenance option. Speaking of using wood in the oven, Hilte said: “[The oven] easily heats to 800- or 900-degrees F in about 15 minutes. It is portable and you can put it on any non-flammable service, so you can cook in your backyard or even take it camping. Mini-cut pizza wood in 6” size works great for this size, just 4 or 5 pieces holds temps of 900 F for more than 20 minutes.”

The new hinged oven door design with ViewFlame™ technology increases visibility, and the mounted digital thermometer displays the internal temperature for precise cooking. I can’t stress enough how much an attached thermometer helps, especially when you’re learning.

Preheat the Karu 16 to 950 degrees Fahrenheit in just 15 minutes and cook everything from  16-inch pizzas, roasted meats, seared vegetables, to fresh bread. Flame-cook epic meals outdoors and ramp up your outdoor parties. Whether you're aiming for the rustic wood-fired flavor or the convenience of gas, the Karu 16 is a one-stop shop at a reasonable price.

Specifications

  • Type/fuel: Wood, charcoal, gas (with burner, sold separately)
  • Cooking area: 16.7 inches x 16.7 inches
  • Temperature: 950 degrees Fahrenheit in 15 minutes
  • Size: 20 inches wide x 32 inches deep x 33 inches tall (with chimney)
  • Weight: 62.6 pounds
  • Number of pizzas: One 16-inch pizza or two 10-inch pizzas
  • Price at time of publish: $799

Pros:

  • Generous cooking area allowing several sizes/quantities
  • Hybrid fuel sources allow flexibility and creativity
  • Hinged door with ViewFlame™ technology and digital thermometer means you have ultimate control from start to finish.

Cons:

  • Heavier option (while this is for good reason) means you’ll need ample space to store and possibly a helping hand stowing the oven away.

The bottom line:

Though it’s a little heavier, the Karu 16 gives you the freedom to choose the fuel type that suits your pizza-making needs—and the included mounted digital thermometer takes the guesswork out of cooking.

Best beginner pizza oven: Breville, the Smart Oven® Pizzaiolo

Breville, the Smart Oven® Pizzaiolo

Breville, the Smart Oven® Pizzaiolo

I was shocked to learn it was possible to achieve brick-oven performance with a countertop model pizza oven. The Pizzaiolo was the first domestic countertop oven to hit 750 degrees Fahrenheit and cook an authentic wood-fired pizza in just two minutes. It replicates the three types of heat generated by a brick oven—conductive, radiant, and convective. The Element iQ® system ensures perfect results for various pizza styles, including New York, Pan, Thin & Crispy, and Frozen. With preset functions and a manual mode for customization, you can impress with diverse pizzas effortlessly. There’s even an app (Breville+), which offers recipes and a complete cooking experience. It’s worth it.

Breville's heating elements provide evenly controlled radiant heat for a “leopard-spotted” crust, while convective heat ensures perfectly baked toppings. This typically takes longer to master (you never really master it). The Pizzaiolo’s design keeps extreme temperatures inside while the exterior stays cool and safe, which is important for an indoor model. The deck-to-door setup moves the pizza closer to the elements, and the integrated deflector shield protects delicate toppings. Breville is a long-trusted brand and hit the mark with this pizza oven. 

“The Breville is a great countertop option that can easily live on the counter in your kitchen or entertaining area,” says Michael Vakneen, chef and pizzaiolo at Pop Up Pizza located at the Plaza Hotel & Casino in downtown Las Vegas. “For those that may not have any outdoor electricity, this is the best option in the market for an indoor oven option. The setting allows you to cook a little bit more precisely by having specific temps with images indicating the pizza styles desired by the user. For example, there are settings for pan pizza, New York, wood fired, and thin and crispy Chicago style

Specifications

  • Type/fuel: Electric
  • Cooking area: 12-inch diameter circle stone
  • Temperature: 750 degrees Fahrenheit in about 15 minutes
  • Size: 18.1 inches wide x 18.5 inches deep x 10.6 inches tall
  • Weight: 32.3 pounds
  • Number of pizzas: One 12-inch pizza
  • Price at time of publish: $999.95

Pros:

  • From the digital temperature controls to the Breville+ app support, it’s perfect for beginners, casual pizza makers, and seasoned veterans.
  • Cook a variety of pizza styles as well as other meals

Cons:

  • While you can achieve a wood-fire style crust, the electric power source means you won’t have the wood-fire flavor.
  • Maximum size is a single 12-inch pizza, so a pizza party may take a while.

The bottom line:

Whether you use it outdoors or indoors, the Breville Pizzaiolo efficiently replicates the brick oven experience at home, with the added bonus of presets (and an app) that make perfect results on command (and custom controls for when you want to get creative).

Best electric pizza oven: Ooni Volt 12 Electric Pizza Oven

Ooni Volt 12 Electric Pizza Oven

Ooni Volt 12 Electric Pizza Oven

The Ooni Volt, Ooni's first all-electric pizza oven, opens new possibilities for making restaurant-quality pizza at home, indoors or out. With a heat-retaining triple-paned borosilicate glass door and adjustable dials to control the top and bottom heating elements, this versatile oven reaches 850 degrees Fahrenheit in just 20 minutes, cooking fresh stone-baked pizza in only 90 seconds. You may be thinking to yourself “90 seconds and burnt” or “90 seconds and undercooked on the bottom.” I can attest to the cooking speed and rebound time. We were able to get 8 to 10 pizzas made in an hour, and that’s mostly due to the slower pace of dough stretching and topping placement when your assistant chef is 5 years old.

Which brings me to a good point: The convenience is a great fit for busy families, even ones that include pizza experts. “Time is tight when you own and operate a restaurant and have a 10-month-old on your lap 24-7,” says Shealyn Brand, co-owner of Coniglio's in Morristown, New Jersey, wife of Nino Coniglio (who apprenticed with the famed Dom DeMarco, founder of DiFara's Pizzeria), and a pizza expert who appeared on Hulu's Best in Dough reality competition series. “Because of this, I was instantly hyped about the Ooni Volt Electric. It's ready-to-use out of the box and can be used indoors and outdoors. Plus, it's easy to store—which is good for people like me with tiny kitchens and limited counter space. You can get a nice, quick bake on a Neapolitan pie.”

Perfect for both novice and expert pizza-makers, the Ooni Volt features manual and automatic heat settings, a built-in timer, temperature control, and a boost mode to quickly return the stone to cooking temperature between bakes, which I can tell you I wish I had in my many years in the restaurant/pizza industry. And I can say the same for the internal oven light that lets you keep an eye on your pizza so you don’t let any heat out. This is helpful for cooking the pizza evenly and keeping the stone hot. Simply plug it into an electrical outlet, and you're ready to make Neapolitan-style pizza without the mess of charcoal or emissions. The Ooni Volt is the ultimate easy-to-use, high-performance pizza oven for any pizza lover. (For even more details, check out my in-depth review of the Ooni Volt 12.)

Specifications

  • Type/fuel: Electric
  • Cooking area: 13 inches x 13 inches
  • Temperature: 850 degrees Fahrenheit in 20 minutes
  • Size: 20.8 inches wide x 24.2 inches deep x 10.9 inches tall
  • Weight: 39.7 pounds
  • Number of pizzas: One 12-inch pizza
  • Price at time of publish: $899

Pros:

  • This is the most powerful electric pizza oven, so much so that it competes with similar sized gas and woodfired models.
  • The boost mode is possibly my favorite feature on any pizza oven. The amount of control you have over top and bottom temperature, and the rebound speed for the pizza stone is impressive.

Cons:

  • Great for outdoors, as long as you have access to electricity. Tailgaters and those cooking away from an outlet may want to look elsewhere.
  • While this model is great for pumping out pizzas quickly, it’s still just a single pizza cooking space.

The bottom line:

Another great option for indoor or outdoor use, the Volt makes a delicious pizza in record time—90 seconds.

Best pizza ovens for parties: Fontana ROMA Hybrid Gas & Wood Oven — New Gen Marinara

Fontana ROMA Hybrid Gas & Wood Oven — New Gen Marinara

Fontana ROMA Hybrid Gas & Wood Oven — New Gen Marinara

The ROMA Hybrid Gas & Wood Oven — New Gen Marinara is designed for those who crave the versatility and tradition of authentic Italian outdoor cooking. With a vast 900 square inches of cooking space and a powerful 75,000 BTU burner, this oven can handle large gatherings effortlessly, accommodating up to four 10-inch pizzas simultaneously. Choose between gas and wood-burning modes to suit your cooking style. Built with 100% Italian craftsmanship since 1978, the ROMA heats up to 900 degrees Fahrenheit, reaching 750 degrees within 30 minutes for quick, perfect Neapolitan pizzas.

This oven's modern design features sleek alloy handles, a durable metal gas knob, and an ignitor button, ensuring it’s both stylish and built to last. The ROMA’s solid welded bent-steel dome and advanced insulation provide superior heat retention, while the redesigned chimney entrance and strategically placed oxygenation ports enhance efficiency. Easy to maintain with a fully removable burner assembly, the ROMA is safe to use with its insulated exterior and sturdy metal feet. Certified for minimal space requirements and energy efficiency, consuming five times less wood than traditional ovens, the ROMA offers unmatched cooking versatility, from pizzas to roasts.

Specifications

  • Type/fuel: Propane, wood, natural gas (with conversion kit)
  • Cooking area: 28 inches x 32 inches 
  • Temperature: 900 degrees Fahrenheit (750 degrees Fahrenheit in 30 minutes or less)
  • Size: 39 inches wide x 41 inches deep x 26 inches tall (47 inches with chimney)
  • Weight: 330 pounds
  • Number of pizzas: One 26-inch pizza, two 12-inch pizzas, four 10-inch pizzas
  • Price at time of publish: $6,149 (optional portable cart and pizza stone upgrade for additional cost)

Pros:

  • Massive cooking surface means you will be instantly known for your pizza parties
  • Fontana doesn’t just make pizza ovens, they make conversation pieces. This model is particularly gorgeous and a great centerpiece for your backyard cooking area.

Cons:

  • This is a luxury pizza oven, and you are definitely paying for quality. Make sure you’re ready for the investment. If you are, it’s worth it.
  • This is a heavy pizza oven and some (easy) assembly is required.

The bottom line:

The ROMA is a stunning oven that’ll be the star of your next party, cooking up to four pizzas at once, allows you to customize your fuel type, and is extremely efficient (it consumes five times less wood than traditional ovens).

Most versatile pizza oven: Ninja Woodfire™ 8-in-1 Outdoor Oven | OO101B

Ninja Woodfire™ 8-in-1 Outdoor Oven | OO101B

Ninja Woodfire™ 8-in-1 Outdoor Oven | OO101B

Reimagine your outdoor cooking with the Ninja Woodfire™ Outdoor Oven. This electric oven offers 8-in-1 versatility with a temperature range of 105 to 700 degrees Fahrenheit, perfect for everything from charred pizzas to slow-smoked ribs. Woodfire Technology adds authentic wood-fire flavor with just a half cup of pellets. No need to store a pile of wood.

With its 8-in-1 functionality, you can transform any space into a full-fledged outdoor kitchen, handling tasks like pizza, roasting, broiling, baking, smoking, dehydrating, and keeping food warm. It reaches 700 degrees Fahrenheit for premium brick oven-inspired results and can feed a crowd with ease. The complete temperature control makes it user-friendly, and its high heat roasting quickly delivers crispy outsides and juicy insides. The BBQ smoker function and artisan pizza feature are particularly impressive, and the oven is built for year-round outdoor use.

Specifications

  • Type/fuel: Electric (wood pellet optional for wood-fired flavor)
  • Cooking area: 13 inches x 13 inches
  • Temperature: 700 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Size: 18 inches wide x 21.5 inches deep x 15.1 inches tall
  • Weight: 32.4 pounds
  • Number of pizzas: One 13-inch pizza
  • Price at time of publish: $299.99

Pros:

  • The electric power source and precision controls make this easy for beginners and allow so much more cooking options than just pizzas.
  • Wood-fire flavor without the burden of having tons of fuel on hand. A half cup of pellets is all you need.
  • Very affordable

Cons:

  • While it can cook an impressive variety of dishes and meals, it can still only cook one at a time. You’ll need to plan ahead or limit yourself to either pizza or a roast.

The bottom line:

Using only a half cup of pellets (optional), you can get all the wood-fire flavor without the inconvenience with this versatile electric pizza oven. You can make anything from pizza to ribs—though the smaller size means you’ll have to cook in batches.

What to consider when choosing an outdoor pizza oven

Size and capacity

Size and capacity are a great starting point when choosing an outdoor pizza oven. Whether you're baking for a cozy family dinner or a full-blown pizza party, make sure your oven can handle the crowd. A bigger oven means more pizzas at once, and less time waiting for the cooking surface to reheat after subsequent pizzas. However, bigger isn’t necessarily always better. “When looking for a pizza oven, we think it is important to think about your lifestyle as pizza making can be a social event, so having one that's too large can be isolating,” says Van Camp and Knauff. “For us, we wanted something portable and powerful so we can have pizza parties anywhere!”

Material and construction quality

Material and construction quality ensure your oven will withstand repeated use. Durable materials like stainless steel or stone look great and offer superior heat retention. A well-built oven promises longevity and consistent performance. The material can also affect how hot the outside surface of the pizza oven can get. This helps with safety, among other considerations.

Fuel type

Outdoor pizza ovens are often available in one of the following options: wood-fired, (wood) pellet fired, propane, or gas. You can also find ovens that are a combination of one or more of these fuel types, typically referred to as hybrid pizza ovens. Each variety can add distinct flavors and experiences to your pizza-making endeavors.

“Choosing between a wood-fired pizza oven and a gas model comes down mostly to the cooking experience you’re looking for,” says Michael Hollander of The BBQ Depot. “If you want a totally authentic experience, spending hours outside enjoying tending the flames, then a wood-fired outdoor pizza oven may be right for you. If you’re newer to the outdoor cooking world or are simply looking for something less labor-intensive, then go with a gas-fueled model.”

Here’s a brief overview about the different fuel types:

Wood-fired and (wood) pellet pizza ovens: These fuel sources give that smoky, traditional flavor, but the downside is that it takes longer to get the wood or pellets to reach temperature. If you’re into wood-fired pizza, be particular about what wood you use. “Hardwoods are ideal for creating the high temperatures needed for pizza crust as they burn hot and produce little ash,” says Hite. “Avoid using pine or other softwoods as they burn at a lower temperature and produce ash and creosote which can leave an unpleasant, acrid taste in a pizza crust.”

Gas pizza ovens (propane or those that use natural gas hookups): These fuel sources offer convenience and control. “Natural gas and propane pizza ovens can heat up very quickly, some heating to 1700° F in under 90 seconds,” says Hollander. “Gas ovens are also very easy to clean and maintain.” While an oven that is hooked up to a natural gas line makes a nice built-in, you sacrifice portability. Personally, I prefer propane.

Though electricity isn’t a fuel type the way wood or gas is, you will find electric options on the market. These heat up quickly (and usually more evenly), do not add fuel costs to your pizza-making budget, and cook pizza fast, too. I love electric for beginning pizza makers for these reasons. “Electric ovens are the future of pizza ovens,” says Vakneen. “This technology is sweeping across the country mainly due to the versatility of cooking at super high temperatures and doing it consistently.”

Cooking temperature range

The cooking temperature range is crucial. Higher temps mean crispier crusts and faster bakes, bringing your pizza to perfection in no time. Look for an oven reaching at least 800 degrees Fahrenheit for that authentic Neapolitan style. Being able to control the temperature allows for versatility in cooking different styles of pizza. “If you like a chewy, thicker crust, ideal oven temp is 400-450 F. For a thin, crispy crust, ideal oven temp is around 900 F,” says Hite.

Ease of use and maintenance

Ease of use and maintenance will keep you spinning pies effortlessly like a professional. Look for features like easy ignition, temperature controls (both top and bottom are ideal), and simple cleaning processes. An oven that's a breeze to maintain means more time enjoying pizza and less time scrubbing.

Price

Of course, you’ll want to find an option that fits your budget without compromising on quality. With outdoor pizza ovens available at various price points, there's something for everyone. Invest wisely to get the best balance of performance, durability, and cost. You can find options ranging from as low as $200 to $300 for entry-level models, and as high as $8,000 to $10,000 for luxury high-end set-ups.

Additional gear required to create pizzas

You’ll want a large prep area for opening the dough and preparing your pizzas. Some models either include or provide optional add-on carts/tables. If you’re going for a luxury model like a Fontana brand, I highly recommend getting the cart add-on since they are designed specifically for the oven.

Some other non-negotiables for me when it comes to pizza-making gear would be a quality (and size-appropriate) pizza peel. This is the wood (or sometimes aluminum or steel) paddle used to get your dough from the prep area to the pizza stone, and then back out with ease. The Ooni aluminum pizza peel has quickly replaced my traditional wood peel at home, which surprised me since I’ve used a wood pizza peel for nearly two decades.

Some other essentials I recommend are:

  • A digital infrared temperature gauge/thermometer (even if the oven has one). I find it helpful to have a backup to test for hot/cold spots and some additional temperature monitoring.
  • A heat-resistant glove is great to have on hand for beginners and expert pizza makers alike.
  • A dough knife/scraper is a must-have. Nothing fancy, just a sturdy, 6-inch to 10-inch wide dough knife to help with cleaning the peel, moving the dough balls, breaking up stubborn burnt-on ingredients on your pizza stone (after it’s cooled off, of course), and more.

How I tested and selected outdoor pizza ovens

Personal experience

My criteria for an outdoor pizza oven was a matter of what I wanted my final product to be. Growing up and living on the East Coast in the United States, I have grown accustomed to a specific New Jersey- and New York-style pizza. This is a brown bottom crust with a golden top crust. Many consumers in the United States as well as around the world are used to many different pizza styles, the most popular of which is Neapolitan style. At-home pizza ovens tend to lean toward this style, marked for its dark brown to lightly charred top crust and a lighter bottom crust (in some cases still slightly undercooked). Any oven that has a top and bottom heating element is automatically in consideration for me, and individual heat controls are even better.

Top temperature

Another factor to consider is speed of achieving top temperature/optimum cooking temperature. A good oven can get to 750 degrees Fahrenheit in about 30 minutes. A great oven can get to at least that temperature in 15 to 20 minutes. Another thing to consider is rebound time, which is the speed at which the pizza stone gets back up to temperature after removing a finished pizza. Cold dough and ingredients can drop the temperature of a stone quickly, and you’ll want to wait until the stone gets back up to your preferred temperature (I prefer to go a bit higher) before placing your next pizza. Ovens with individual controls for top and bottom temperature are ideal because they allow you to divert more heat to the bottom stone to get you up to temperature quicker.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

What type of outdoor pizza oven is best?

This depends on what you want in terms of taste and style. If you’re a fan of wood-fired flavor, you’ll want a wood-burning or a wood-pellet oven. If you’re looking for precision and performance, propane gas or natural gas are great options. Electric is also a great option for control and precision if you want something that doesn’t require external fuel. Hybrid ovens are the way to go since you can cook with various fuel sources to cover all of your needs. I’m particularly drawn to wood-fire/propane hybrids with individual heat control. You can get wood-fired flavor without the wait to get to temperature.

What is a good size outdoor pizza oven?

Depending on your individual needs, you can’t necessarily go wrong with the size of the cooking area. If you’re just getting started, or plan to use the oven in tandem with other outdoor cooking fixtures, you can get going with a 12-inch cooking area. My personal baseline is a 14-inch pizza stone (ideally larger to give some wiggle room) if you're making a few pizzas for your friends or family. However, if you want to be known for your amazing pizza parties and create memory after memory, find yourself a cooking area that can accommodate two pizzas at a time. The ovens that can handle two to three 10-inch pizzas are great for backyard gatherings and pizza parties.

What is the world's number-one pizza oven brand?

Year after year, Ooni takes the win for the number-one pizza oven brand. The brand continues to innovate ovens in a range of sizes, fuel types, and designs. From electric to woodfire, propane to natural gas, you can find a good fit for your pizza goals.

Is an outdoor pizza oven worth it?

Consider how often you think you’ll be having a pizza party. How cold is it where you live? How many people would you be cooking for? Do you have room to store/house your pizza ovens? If you’ve ever wanted to try and make homemade pizza, and want to upgrade from the painstaking process of heating a pizza stone in a standard kitchen oven (to a maximum of 600 degrees if you’re lucky), then there’s a pizza oven for you. If you’re on the fence, get a model that boasts cooking a variety of meals. If you’re ready to dive in and want to make pizza night a weekly fixture, splurge for a larger oven or luxury model. No matter your experience and skill level, making pizza at home will be fun and easy when you have the right oven.

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