When it comes to making authentic Italian-style pizzas at home, there isn’t too much that comes close to the Ooni Pizza Oven. It’s the perfect solution to the backyard entertaining area that’s missing that something extra, and being small and portable means cleanup and storage is a whole lot easier than a brick model, or even a BBQ.
That said, if you’re looking to whip up some incredible pizzas from the comfort of your own home, then the Ooni might just have to land on the top of your pizza oven list. You’ll have your pizzas done in just 60 seconds, and that’s perfect for those at-home pizza parties when making 5 or more pizzas for friends and family will take far too long in the traditional oven.
Let’s take a deeper looker below at the Ooni Pizza Oven and why you should consider one!
Why the Ooni Pizza Oven?
If you’ve always wanted to try your hand at making some authentically-cooked pizzas at home that are perfectly crisped in wood-fired ovens, then this might be the best investment for your pizza-making activities yet.
The Ooni is a small, portable pizza oven that offers a design that looks great, is easy to clean and even easier to use. There aren’t any multi-step set-up requirements here and you’ll be able to get cooking in no time at all.
It’s good to keep in mind that the Ooni is one of the most suitable pizza ovens out there for those who can’t install a true pizza oven. Whether size constraints prevent you from fitting the oven, or you’re renting, the Ooni is going to be the next best thing when compared to a wood-fired, built-in pizza oven in the backyard.
In all, we’re confident in saying that the Ooni offers a homemade pizza-cooking experience that’s as close to a genuine pizza oven as you’ll get.
What’s in Our Ooni Pizza Oven Review
Below we’ll take a look over everything you need to know about the Ooni Pizza Oven as well as how to use it, the temperature inside the oven and where you’ll be able to buy an Ooni Pizza Oven at the best price.
We’ll also take a look at how best to clean the oven and what other accessories and tools you might need to make your experience with the Ooni the best.
We’ll take a look at:
- The Ooni Brand
- How to Use the Ooni
- Comparing the Ooni 3 and Ooni Pro
- Where to Buy the Ooni
- How to Use the Ooni
- Some Essential Accessories
Take a look at our review below.
A Bit About the Ooni
To kick off our review, we’ll take a look at what the Ooni Pizza Oven is and how it came to be one of our favourite pizza ovens.
Keeping things simple, the Ooni Oven is an outdoor pizza oven that is wood-fired and portable. That said, it brings the best of both worlds; that authentic pizza taste along with a small and easy to clean oven.
We’re glad to say that the Ooni is also incredibly light and designed to be picked up and moved when you’re finished, making it a tonne more versatile than fixed or brick models that you have to commit to having in your backyard for years to come. That in mind, you can make wood-fired pizza in just about any location you’d like, whether it be a public park, the backyard, by the beach or anywhere else.
As we mentioned, the design of the oven and the heat transfer is so optimal that you can have your pizzas done in literally 60 seconds and sometimes less depending on your ingredients.
One big perk that makes us love the Ooni so much is the airflow-focused design. A lot of small or portable pizza ovens get far too hot quickly, and as a result have to be turned down or used for only a few minutes at a time before things become dangerous. With the Ooni, you’re getting great airflow which sustains an incredible 480º without presenting any issues.
All that said, the Ooni is the ideal companion for pizza making and getting a crunchy, chewy and well-cooked pizza in less than a minute.
Using the Ooni
We’re glad to say that when it comes to using the Ooni that things happen quite quickly and are as simple as possible.
You’ll find that the Ooni heats up within just a few minutes. We noticed that you’ll see the oven hitting the prime temperature of 480 degrees within around ten minutes, and being fuelled by anything from wood pellets to charcoal and propane gas (depending on the model) means there’s a good chance you’ll always have a fuel source handy — especially if you already use an outdoor BBQ from time to time.
We’d also like to point out that the compact design also makes fuelling the Ooni a tonne easier than some other models out there. You won’t need to spend time stacking and ‘stuffing’ the oven with your fuel, but rather just set it in there and get started. A big plus for those who want to spend as little time fiddling as possible.
To end, the Ooni can heat up and have your pizzas done in a shorter time than it takes for a pizza delivery. And the results are magnificent.
Comparing the Ooni and the Other Models
To give you a little more insight into the Ooni, we’ll take a look below at one of the brand’s competing pizza ovens and let you know whether one of these might be better for you or not.
Keep in mind, however, that price and usability still remain paramount in our review and the original Ooni model still checks off everything on our requirements list.
The Uuni and the Ooni
If you’ve taken a look online for a pizza oven in the past, you’ll know that there was an Uuni pizza oven that was raved about in reviews and likely by your friends too.
We’re happy to say that there’s absolutely no difference between the Uuni and the Ooni pizza oven, they’re exactly the same oven, though there was a simple name change.
This was possibly down to the wording being hard to understand or say for customers, so the Uuni just became the Ooni.
That in mind — if you do find a used Uuni pizza oven, or have spotted a few online and wondered whether they were legitimate pizza ovens or not, we’re confident in saying that these are legitimate.
In all, both the Uuni and the Ooni are excellent outdoor pizza ovens.
The Ooni 3 and Ooni Pro Models
For our readers who have sneakily taken a peek at the Ooni website before finishing our review, you’ll have spotted that there are a few different models of the Ooni pizza oven up for grabs.
These other models are also small and portable enough to move around the home or pack into a car, however, there are a few little differences that might make these ovens just a tad more suitable for you.
For starters, the Ooni Pro is quite a bit larger than the Ooni 3, and to be exact, it’s actually twice the size of the oven. That said, it’s a little less portable than the smaller Ooni 3, though you’ll be able to make pizzas up to 16-inches, which means for those bigger family gatherings this might be your best bet.
On top of this, the Ooni Pro is the right size to use as a BBQ too. If you’re a frequent roaster of vegetables or meats, then the Pro might also be a better option for you too.
In all, the Ooni 3 is your compact, portable pizza-cooking companion, whereas the Pro is a bit bigger and great for cooking more than just pizza.
Another key difference here is the fuel.
As we mentioned above, these pizza ovens can be fuelled by anything from wooden pellets, charcoal and propane gas which is great for those who already have these fuels from their BBQ’ing days.
The Ooni Pro takes all three of these fuel types we mentioned above, however, the Ooni 3 is restricted to just wood pellets for now.
Keeping in mind that one of the biggest selling points of these pizza ovens is their ability to be moved around easily or stored in a car, portability was an important ‘feature’ or judgment metric for us.
For our readers looking for small and light, both of these pizza ovens are a great option and you’ll be in good hands with either. However, one is smaller and lighter than the other, so you’ll have to do a few checks to make sure just how small and light you need.
The Ooni 3 can be packed in a bag quite easily to be stored and transported, whereas the Ooni Pro is a little more hefty and can be a bit of a struggle to move depending on how strong you are or where you’ll be storing the oven.
Another key area where the differences between the models does become apparent is pricing. If you’re on a budget or strictly not looking to spend too much on one of these ovens, then the Ooni 3 is going to be a winner for you.
The Ooni 3 does come with fewer features and a smaller design, which brings its price down to a manageable $300 which we believe is quite fair and relatively low when compared to many other pizza ovens in this class.
The Ooni Pro on the other hand is $599, which is a whole lot more for not too many added features, in our opinion.
Whichever model you choose though, you’ll see that these ovens last a long time and aren’t prone to wear and tear, rust or any other issues down the line.
Summary of the Ooni 3 vs Ooni Pro
With all of the above said, we’ll take a quick look at the Ooni 3 and the Pro model and why you might want to consider one over the other.
As we mentioned, the Ooni 3 is only fuelled by one fuel type, which means you will be out of luck if you want to make use of propane or charcoal to get that crispy well-done pizza from the comfort of your outdoor patio. A possible dealbreaker for some.
The Ooni 3 is, of course, the more portable option here, so if you’re someone who enjoys taking your pizza-making activities to the beach, park or the farmlands then the Ooni 3 will make your life a whole lot easier.
We’d stand by the Ooni 3 being the pizza oven for those who are cooking for just two people, or perhaps a third guest or visitor. If you’re making pizzas for more than three, then you’re going to be a little frustrated by the time it takes to cook and place a new pizza in the oven.
In all, both of these pizza ovens are great for small groups and getting pizzas cooked with ease out of the kitchen, though depending on your fuel type, number of guests and portability requirements, one will shine above the other.
Where to Buy an Ooni Pizza Oven
If our review and comparison has you on the lookout for a new Ooni pizza oven, then we have a few pointers on where to find one at a great price.
Of course, the easiest place to looking is the Ooni website. You’ll often find deals here along with the best way to order accessories and attachments for the pizza oven you choose, which may make your pizza-cooking experience even better!
You can also find these pizza ovens available on Amazon Prime, so getting your hands on a new pizza oven in just a few days has never been easier. Typically, Amazon will have these pizza ovens delivered within just 2 days.
One thing to keep in mind is that your pizza oven may come with the old labelling on the side, on the box or in the user manual. Don’t be too concerned about this as it’s just a cosmetic change and won’t affect the quality of the appliance. The re-naming of the Uuni may take up to a year for all older stock to be replaced with the new labels.
Using the Ooni Pizza Oven
When it comes to making the pizza, we’re happy to say that the Ooni is incredibly easy to use and delivers excellent wood-fired pizzas every time you use it.
We’ll take a quick look below at how to use the Ooni Pizza Oven and what to expect during your pizza-cooking experience at home.
Finding a Surface
Unlike almost all portable pizza ovens, the Ooni model encapsulates almost all of the heat put out by the coals, wood pellets or propane. What this means is that you can set it down on almost any surface and get cooking. Just don’t have it near anything flammable and you’re good to go.
Throughout our use, placing it on a wooden deck, timber countertops and stone countertops was fine and left no heat marks or anything of the sort.
Starting the Ooni
When it comes to lighting up your Ooni, this step will depend on which of the two models you chose. As we mentioned, the Ooni 3 only takes wooden pellets, so for this oven you’ll just need to fill the pellet hopper with the pellets of your choosing and kickstart the pizza oven with a blow torch or a starter light and you’re good to go.
If you’re not too sure on how to do this, Ooni has a tonne of resources on their website about how to start your Ooni pizza oven.
For the Pro model, you’ll either follow the same pellet steps, or just spark the propane gas and you’re all set.
Make the Pizza!
As your Ooni begins to heat up, you’re now free to get started making your pizzas. If you’ve not made pizza at home before, we’re also happy to say that Ooni’s website has you covered for this too.
Whatever you do though, get creative and have some fun. You’ll be setting these down in a wood-fired pizza oven so they’ll be bound to taste great regardless of what you’re putting on them.
Cooking the Pizza
When the pizzas are made and ready to cook, all you’ll need to do is set them down on the peel and move them into the Ooni. Make sure you keep a close eye on these as they’ll be done in around 60 seconds, so don’t over-cook them!
One final thing to note is that you will need to rotate these pizzas as they’re cooking because you’ll want them to be evenly cooked across all sides, rather than having one side crisped and one not.
Take your pizza out of the oven and enjoy. If you have more pizzas to make or cook just repeat those steps above and you’re soon to be a favourite among family and friends when it comes to pizza night.
How Hot is the Ooni
As you might have guessed, cooking a pizza in 60 seconds is quite quick, and this is down to how hot the Ooni oven is.
Keep in mind that the 500-degree oven isn’t going to burn your pizzas, unless you leave them in too long, but rather prompt your dough and the toppings to cook almost instantly. This is the ideal way to cook pizza and it’s going to give you that crispy crust and nice, well-done topping without any sign of sogginess.
The temperatures inside the oven will hit 500 degrees Celsius, so keeping pizzas in this oven for around 60 seconds is paramount.
Cleaning the Ooni
Typically the least fun step in making pizza is getting everything cleaned up, and with that, we’re happy to say that the Ooni’s cleanup process is effortless. In fact, the Ooni is one of the lowest maintenance pizza ovens we’ve seen on the market today.
Cleaning the Exterior
All you’ll need to do is have a damp cloth and wipe down all of the steel edges and you’re good to go. It’s good to use a cloth without any scratchy or abrasive parts as you’ll want to keep this steel looking as polished as possible.
Cleaning the Interior
On the interior of the oven, the 500º heat basically does all of the internal cleaning itself. There’s no chance of any bacteria or any other impurities living in here as you cook, so all you’ll really need to do is wipe out the interior if you’d like to. Other than that, the Ooni essentially cleans itself.
Cleaning the Pizza Stone
One final thing to note is that you’ll need to be sure to at least wipe or scrub off the pizza stone each time you’re using your pizza oven. If you fail to do this, you’ll notice that your pizzas taste progressively worse as the previous pizza’s flour or base will stick and burn to this stone, making your pizzas taste awful.
The best way to do this, and the easiest way to remember to clean the stone is to wipe it down just before you get started cooking your pizza. You can clean this stone easily with a wet cloth or paper towel with some tongs. Wipe it around a few times and you’ll see all of the loose flour and other ingredients simply wipe off the stone.
Those few steps out of the way, and you’ll have a nice and clean pizza oven. Pretty easy if we do say so ourselves.
Some Essential Accessories
As we outlined above, there are a few accessories on the Ooni website and also across plenty of web stores online that will help you get the most out of your pizza oven.
We’re sure you’ll agree, you want the best experience possible from your Ooni, and that means investing in just a few little essentials that makes cleaning, cooking and storage a bit easier for you and your family.
For a lot of our readers, cooking pizza can feel a little overwhelming or like a struggle when you do it at home for the first time, and these tools and accessories will definitely help you out.
Some Wood Pellets
To kick things off, you’ll want some wood pellets. We know that these aren’t an essential for the Pro model, though they’re the easiest fuel types to start with, and because of this, we suggest that all our readers get started on their pizza cooking journeys with pellets.
You can find these online and at your local hardware store for just a few dollars, and being wood, they’re the best way to get that wood-smoke and wood-flavoured pizza crusts that we all love to eat when we go out!
A Propane Torch
To make starting or lighting your oven a whole lot safer and easier, we suggest investing in a propane torch. These tools are going to be your saving grace when it comes to getting a far reach into the pizza oven without putting your hand or arm too deep into it.
These torches will quickly light your pellets without issue and the long-neck designs of these propane torches will mean you can often light your Ooni without putting your hand or arm anywhere near the flames on the inside.
As there isn’t a temperature metre on the Ooni you’ll want to invest in your own model to tell you when your pizza oven is ready to go. We suggest an infrared thermometer as these models don’t need you to get too close to the fire and you can just point the thermometer at the oven and get a quick reading.
You’ll typically find these online for only $10 to $15.
A Wooden Pizza Peel
When you do purchase your Ooni online, you’ll notice that the peel that comes included in the box is a stainless steel model. Of course, this works just fine, though we’d certainly suggest opting for a wooden variant to get a better experience and a slightly better transfer.
These, again, only cost around $10 to $15 and you’ll be maximising that awesome wood-smoked flavour that comes out of the oven.
To end, buying a few pizza peels is a good idea when it comes to making pizza with friends and family since everyone will have their own pizza peel to get to work on.
To make the pizza-making experience just that little more fun, we suggest getting your hands on semolina flour as our final must-have ‘accessory.’
When you’re making your pizzas and transferring them to the pizza oven, you’ll want this hand-off to be as smooth as possible, so the semolina flour is the key to sliding these pizzas to and from the oven.
As you might already know, semolina does have a rougher feel than typical flour and that means it’s easier than ever when it comes time to slide your pizzas in and out of the pizza oven.
You might find that sometimes the pizzas still don’t slide too well, and that’s when you’ll have to pinch the pizza’s edges up and add a little more flour and we’re sure they’ll slide just fine after this.
From our review above, it’s clear to see that we’re obsessed with the affordable, well-built and easy to use Ooni pizza ovens.
They’re designed with ease of use in mind, longevity and in all, they’re one of the best portable pizza ovens out there when it comes to getting your hands on some wood-fired pizzas from the comfort of your own home!
For the newbies to pizza cooking at home, we suggest the Ooni 3 and for those who need something with just a tad more oomph, the Ooni Pro might be the best for you.