Pizza is a worldwide phenomenon, and often hotly debated. Pizza is something that has managed to stand through time and still remains one of the most popular foods in many countries across our globe. When it comes to making pizza at home, a lot of people ask what is the best temperature to cook pizza? This guide explains.
Understanding the science involved here
One of the biggest challenges that pizza makers face is deciding the right temperature that would be right to cook a perfect pizza.
Cooking anything at a high temperature decreases the time required to cook it. In the case of baking pizza, high temperature plays some other important roles as well. The first requirement for a great pizza is to have a crispy and fluffy crust.
This is something you can get from cooking it at high temperatures only. High temperature enables the gases within the dough to expand quickly which will result in a fluffy pizza.
There comes a challenge when people want to cook the best pizza at home. The majority of ovens that people have in their homes can’t heat up to the level to cook a perfect pizza. The perfect pizza that you get in the best restaurants is made in special ovens. The good news is, you can cook a perfect pizza even if you don’t have a such oven. The only thing you need here is a pizza stone.
A pizza stone is a simple tool that helps you achieve the best temperature to cook pizza at your home. Pizza stones are made up of ceramic or other similar materials and are shaped like pizzas. Make sure the pizza is a little smaller than the stone that you are using. The temperature in an oven is distributed evenly across the entire area. This is not something you would want for a delicious pizza.
A pizza steel or stone absorbs the majority of heat and that heat is eventually used to elevate the temperature of your pizza further. Since the stone delivers heat directly into the pizza, it will result in a crispy crust. The pizza stone is something that would amplify the amount of heat around the pizza.
The best temperature to cook pizza
Generally, experts emphasize a lot on the importance of the best temperature to cook pizza and there are several reasons for it. There are four things that you will get for sure with the high temperature here.
First, it helps you get the perfect texture. Everyone loves pizza with a crunchy crust with certain levels of airiness inside. It is almost impossible to have such a crust by applying lower temperatures. That is why you have to rise up the temperature and incorporate the use of a pizza stone to heat it up further.
Second, you can cook the sauce the best way at high temperatures. There is nothing more annoying than sinking your teeth into the cold sauce while eating pizza. Avoid this thing altogether by opting for high temperatures to cook pizza. With this, you can enjoy a pizza that has a warm and perfectly cooked pizza sauce just as you like.
Third, it works best to give you a delicious topping. This is another important factor that defines the quality of a pizza. No matter which topping you are going for, it must be cooked perfectly. A thoroughly cooked topping will enhance the taste of your pizza further. There is no other way to cook the topping perfectly than cooking it at a higher temperature.
Fourth, getting a bubbling cheese becomes a lot easier with it. You can have bubbling cheese on your pizza even at home. And guess what the trick is, yes it is cooking at high temperatures.
Celsius or Fahrenheit?
We’ve done the hard yards for you, and here’s degrees F converted to C. We’ve also given you a rough estimation of what typical ovens can reach in range.
|Max temp typical conventional oven||400°||204°|
|High temp hot conventional oven||450°||232°|
|Max temp hot conventional oven||500°||260°|
|Commercial electric/gas oven||550°||288°|
|Commercial electric/gas oven||600°||316°|
|Wood fired oven||650°||343°|
|Wood fired oven||700°||371°|
The highest temperature to cook pizza
The best temperature to cook pizza really is the highest temperature, most of the time.
As you can see in the table of temperatures above, you are restricted in temperatures by the type of oven that you have.
There are many different types of ovens available in the market. You can basically boil them down to four types of oven.
Typical conventional oven
This is the stock standard oven that most homes have in them. It doesn’t really matter if it is electric or gas powered, they typically have a maximum temperature of 400°F / 200°c.
Hot conventional oven
These are more specialty ovens, found in high end chef kitchens in homes. You can find hot conventional ovens in some oven ranges only. These will have a maximum temperature of around 500°F / 260°c.
Commercial electric/gas oven
This is what you will find in your local restaurant. Unless it’s a pizzeria with a wood fired oven, most restaurants have commercial grade equipment which will often reach maximum temperatures of around 600°F / 300°c.
Wood fired oven
This is where pizza cooking is ideal. An outdoor wood fired oven can reach extremely hot temperatures of up to 800°F / 420°c.
What about adding a pizza steel or pizza stone?
In case you have a fire and brick oven in your backyard, you can easily reach up to 800F and have a perfectly cooked pizza of any type. But the limit of conventional kitchen ovens is not like that.
So, you won’t be able to raise the temperature more than 500-550F. So the best thing you have got here is a pizza steel or stone. It will simplify the overall process of having a perfect pizza at home.
You can use a pizza stone in case you are cooking in a convection oven as well. Convection ovens have fans to regulate heat evenly inside but the maximum limit is still around 500-550F.
Wood fired pizza oven
Ideally if you have room, and the money, you would build or install a wood fired pizza oven in your yard.
Coming to the best temperature to cook pizza in a wood-fired brick oven, and setting the flame the right way is really important. Since you are aiming for high temperatures, go for the woods with high burning values. You may have different options based on where you live.
Make sure the flames are reaching the central part of the dome before you place your pizza in there. Keep on adding wood continuously to maintain the right temperature throughout this process.
Some important points to keep in mind
Whatever temperature we have stated above should be maintained inside the oven before putting the pizza in there. It is highly recommended to preheat the oven beforehand. Along with that, you have to preheat the pizza stone as well. The job is not done after just putting the pizza inside.
You have to check the pizza every 5 minutes or so. It will let you know the status of the pizza and avoid you from overcooking it. In case some parts of the pizza turn brown earlier than others, you can flip the sides.
When you see the color of the pizza turning medium to dark brown with all the cheese melted, it is time to take out the pizza.
One thing that you should know is the fact that the best temperature to cook pizza alone can’t make the best pizza. You must pay close attention to the ingredients you choose and the right process of making the dough. Whether you prefer Italian or other pizzas should be considered as well because you need different processes for both of them.
The right type of flour along with the proper amount of water, instant yeast, and other things matters a lot for cooking the best pizza at home. We hope these points help you in cooking one of the best pizzas right in your home.