Five In-depth Tips for Superior Pizza with Ooni Ovens

So, you’re ready to explore the vibrant world of homemade pizza? Bravo! Whether you’re stepping into it for the first time or are just looking to step up your game, our top tips can help.

Reaching pizza perfection might seem overly ambitious, but with an Ooni Pizza Oven, you’re already halfway there. Here are Lakeland’s five Ooni oven tips to avoid common pizza-making pitfalls and ensure you get the best out of your Ooni experience.

1. Pizzaiolos Like It Hot

You’re not dealing with any old oven here, the Ooni is built for heat – so let it blast! Whether you cook with wood-fired or electric, every Ooni oven is able to hit the pizza perfect sweet spot of 500°C in just 15 minutes. If you skimp on the proper preheat of at least 15 minutes, you’re in danger of being left with lacklustre toppings and a limp, pale base. Whatever you do, don’t rush this important stage of cooking.

The Ooni Koda 12 Gas Powered Pizza Oven has an adjustable heat control that dial lets you increase or decrease the flame, giving you control over the heat. Save this function for other Ooni oven dishes, for pizza, 500°C is how crispy crusts and toasted bases are made.

If you want to be sure that your cooking surface is hot enough, use this Ooni Infrared Temperature Gun. It’s a point-and-press digital thermometer, perfect for checking your oven, pizza stone or an outdoor BBQ grill.

Once your Ooni is scorching hot, your pizza only needs 60 to 90 seconds to cook. This rapido baking time is the traditional Neapolitan way, ensuring an evenly baked crust and mouth-watering melted toppings.

2. Prove You’ve Got What It Takes

It’s easy to get fixated on toppings, but it’s dough that’s carries a great pizza performance, literally. As your foundation layer, it’s important to give your dough due attention from the first moment.

Failing to let your dough prove for at least 24 hours could result in a dense, heavy base. It might seem like an agonising wait, but it’s this slow rise time that helps develop complex flavours and a delightfully light, bubbled crust.

Don’t just take our word for it, have a look at Ooni’s tips for working with their Neapolitan Pizza Dough Mix. After adding water and kneading everything together, they instruct all prospective chefs to cover their dough with a damp cloth and place it in the fridge overnight to prove.

Adding water is another part of the process that might sound simple but is vital to get right. If your dough feels tough and not elastic, or if it tears easily, it may be too dry. Strike a hydration balance around 55-65% for dough that’s delightfully supple and easy to handle. Both the Ooni Neapolitan and New York dough mixes suggest using around 57% water: dry ingredients, with the option to add olive oil for a softer base.

Here’s Ooni’s Perfect Pizza Dough recipe for anyone wanting to make their dough from scratch.

3.Tips For Toppings

The bit we all get excited about, toppings. Creativity can run wild as we try to load on our favourite flavours and create a hot new take on classic combos. But deep down we know that overloading our pizzas will just leave to sogginess. As much as you can, practice restraint.

Choose fresh, high-quality ingredients and slice them thinly using a sharp knife to allow for uniform cooking. When you add them to the base, try to distribute everything evenly, avoiding a mix of under and overwhelming mouthfuls.

Toppings that are too wet or juicy, such as fresh pineapple, could render your pizza soggy. We’ve got nothing against the Hawaiian option, but if you are adding pineapple make sure to do it in the last 30 seconds of cooking.

And, if it wouldn’t stifle your creative spirit too much, we would always suggest having a look at some recipes. Just for inspiration! The Ooni ‘Cooking with Fire’ Cookbook is full of excellent ideas, or start planning today by browsing the recipes on our blog.

4. The Appeal of A Good Pizza Peel

One of the underrated challenges of cooking pizza is the seemingly simple act of getting it in and out of the oven. In this battle, the pizza peel is your ally. Without one, you’re risking a pizza slipping or sticking, and you might come away with a few burns to remember your mistake by.

Ooni have a few peel models to choose from. Perhaps a perforated peel appeals, as it releases steam and extra flour for a seriously crisp crust. Or choose between a large aluminium peel, able to retrieve a 12” pizza, and a smaller turning peel designed for adjusting food whilst it cooks and whisking out small pizzas.

If you’re using a portable Ooni, like the Frya 12 Wood Pellet Oven, then packing a wooden peel that can double up as a serving board seems like a smart move.

Regardless of the type, always remember to flour your peel generously, as forgetting this step could lead to the dough sticking and morphing from pizza to puddle.

5. The Art of the Ooni Experience

Making pizza isn’t just about cooking; it’s about creating an experience. Forget this, and you’re missing out on half the fun.

While your oven sits close by on a patio surface or Ooni Modular Table, transform your own dining table into a blissful summer scene. Lakeland’s outdoor dining range has fairy lights and stylish melamine dinnerware to complete the picture.

Make sure to save tabletop space for some of our recommended pizza pairings. This Cottage Delight Garlic Balsamic Glaze is made for drizzling and crust dipping. While anyone used to dining out will have grown accustomed to the tastebud zing of Chilli Oil, so don’t go without at home!

Each of these tips, detailed with the right tools, will elevate your pizza-making game. The Ooni pizza oven isn’t just a cooking device; it’s a tool to unleash your culinary potential and create unforgettable dining experiences. Say goodbye to pizza-making blunders and let the adventures begin!