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3 Types of Outdoor Pizza Oven to Try for an Authentic Italian BBQ Feast

bbq pizza oven

2020 has arrived. So it’s the perfect time to freshen up your grill game and try new things. Whether you’re a three-times-a-week barbecue fanatic or a casual griller, we have some tasty insights to share. Outdoor pizza ovens are hotting up, and they’re a great way to mix up your barbecue repertoire.

Why not add some Italian flair to proceedings and cook an authentic Italian pizza on an outdoor pizza oven? It’s a chance to say ‘arrivederci’ (that’s goodbye in Italian for the uninitiated) to fast food and supermarket pizza, while still enjoying a tasty slice. Cooking using wood also creates a distinctive taste and texture that simply can’t be beaten by a traditional kitchen oven.

Cooking pizzas also gives you the freedom to express your culinary style and creativity thanks to the infinitely delicious world of toppings. There are so many different combinations of tastes and textures to explore, the flavour possibilities are truly endless. The best part is, it couldn’t be easier to cook delicious pizzas using a pizza oven – and, it’s so much quicker than using your kitchen oven, or even ordering a takeaway.

So, how do you get started with this traditional, authentic cooking method that’s taken the barbecue world by storm? Here are 3 types of outdoor pizza oven that you can use to craft mouth-watering artisan pizzas right in your own back garden.

1. Brick outdoor pizza oven

A brick outdoor pizza oven is great if you’ve got the space. There are lots of different styles and types, and they can even be custom designed and built to perfectly suit your garden space. The basics of a pizza oven are a base, a cast, a domed oven space, and a chimney. The bases can be either a pedestal built up from the floor or incorporated into a layout with tabletop space.

If you are more the hands on type, you can build a pizza oven yourself, although this is a big job and requires some skill with brick cutting and laying. Or, you can create the base and buy a premade oven. If all this sounds a little exhausting, you can always hire a company to design and install the entire thing.

These kinds of pizza ovens are usually a lot bigger than other types of pizza oven, so you’ll get lots of space to cook multiple pizzas at the same time, and even experiment with other dishes, like tasty sides.

When it comes to fuel for traditional brick pizza ovens, use kiln dried logs, or you can try our compressed saw dust logs specifically designed for pizza ovens.

Is a brick outdoor pizza oven the right choice for you?

To bring all this information together, a good quality brick outdoor pizza oven is a fantastic choice if you’re looking for a reliable, long term cooking tool. It delivers a distinctive wood-fired flavour, and you’ll know you’re using an authentic cooking technique that’s stood the test of time.

However, brick pizza ovens do take up a lot of space, and they can be very difficult to move. Plus, they can be quite expensive, especially if you don’t have the know-how to build one yourself.

If you’re passionate about pizza, have plenty of outdoor space and are in your own, long-term home, then a brick outdoor pizza oven could be a fantastic investment for you.

However, if you’re not sure how long you’re going to be living in your home, or have a relatively small budget, keep reading to find out about the other types of pizza oven you could choose.

2. Portable wood burning pizza oven

These kinds of pizza ovens are much smaller than their brick counterparts, and they’re portable too. Usually, these are made of metal, like stainless steel, but they can also be ceramic.

Portable wood burning pizza ovens are becoming increasingly popular. They offer the performance of a brick pizza oven, without taking up as much space, and they can be stored away. There are a number of brands developing their own portable pizza ovens, so shop around to find the perfect one for you. Many of these ovens come with clever gadgets like temperature sensors or gas ignition that can really make it easier to cook delicious pizzas.

There’s a wide range of different sized portable pizza ovens out there. Some are tabletop, while others are free standing units with space for plenty of additional food. These kinds of oven are usually fuelled by kindling, wood pellets, or, sometimes, gas. If you want a hint of wood smoke, go for a wood fuel like our kiln dried kindling wood. A gas pizza oven will get up to temperature quicker, but you’ll lose the distinctive smoky taste of a wood fired oven.

Is a portable wood burning pizza oven your ideal cooking tool?

Portable wood burning pizza ovens are extremely trendy – but are they right for you? They’re ideal if you’ve got a limited amount of garden space, or want to move your oven around. With a model that burns wood, you’ll get the distinctive wood-fired flavour of an authentic Italian pizza, with the help of some special features available on some models.

However, these pizza ovens do have a lot less space than a brick oven – so if you’re cooking for a large party, expect to be managing the oven for a while. While the cook time of each pizza is very low, it can be a lot of work to move single pizzas in and out of a small oven. Also, these portable models can be expensive, so if you’re on a budget, they might not be the best choice.

3. Barbecue Pizza Ovens

This style of pizza oven sits on top of your existing barbecue. Simply light your barbecue as you would for any other kind of grilling, then place the barbecue pizza oven on top. It’ll absorb the heat from the fire and then radiate it internally to cook your pizzas.

Using this style of pizza oven is much better than just putting a pizza straight on the grill. This is because the oven gets a lot hotter than a barbecue grill – and it provides the consistent heat that you need to cook pizza.

Barbecue pizza ovens are available for both charcoal and gas barbecues. Like with portable wood burning pizza ovens, if you want a smoky flavour, go for a model that’s specifically for charcoal barbecues. You won’t get quite the same effect as you would with a traditional brick oven, but you’ll still get more of a tang than if you use gas.

Should you get a barbecue pizza oven?

Barbecue pizza ovens are affordable, portable, and compact. They’re ideal if you’ve already got a barbecue setup that you really like, and if you’re an experienced barbecue pro who can manage a fire well. However, as these ovens are limited by the space on top of a barbecue, they can only really accommodate one pizza at a time.

The great thing about a barbecue pizza oven is that you can use your existing charcoal and barbecue, so there’s less experimenting to get started. If you’re looking for a quick and easy way to test out this delicious method of cooking, then a barbecue pizza oven is a great choice.

So, if you’re looking to get started cooking authentic pizza on an outdoor pizza oven, why not try one of these 3 options?

At Big K, we love to see people experimenting and trying new things on their barbecues. Let us know about your Italian pizza oven feasts on our social media: Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook.