The Ultimate Ooni Pizza Oven Start Guide

by Lauren Grzina

From time to time we get calls from our customers saying something like "I've got my pizza oven...now what?"

So we spend time coaching our clients on how to get started or to help them work their way through the process of making pizza.

Making pizza is one of those very easy things to do .... especially when you are an expert, or you've done it a few times. Like most things worthwhile, there is a bit of practice required and know-how to get under your belt.



Choosing an Oven

Before you even try to start making pizza you need to choose your oven. 

The Ooni Koda is better for convenience. It's cheaper, is quick to set up and it's easy to maintain. The 12" Koda is better for transporting as it's smaller and lighter, which means you can take it to a family or friends house, or on a picnic.

The Karu is better suited to the enthusiast. It's a multi-fuel oven and can be run on charcoal, wood or gas (gas burner attachment sold separately). It has a chimney which can make it a little harder to set up and clean.

Both the Karu and the Koda are suitable to cook other food like steak, fish or vegetables, however, this must be done in a cast iron pan. In a 12" pizza oven you can fit a 22cm cast iron pan and in a 16" pizza oven you can fit a 30cm pan.

If you are still unsure about which oven is right for you contact FORM + DESIGN by email ([email protected]), by phone (1300 866 933) or by coming in store. Staff will be able to help give you personalised suggestions based on your individual needs and wants.


Set Up

Setting up your pizza oven should take you not more than 20mins. Inside the box the oven is assembled 

The video below only provides details on setting up an Ooni Koda, the information is not relevant to a Karu.

Making a Pizza

While making pizza from scratch yields the best results in the Ooni's, you can still achieve great results from store bought options.

If you're new to pizza making these are the step we recommend you take in order to become a pro.

Step 1: Learn and get comfortable with your new oven by practising with a frozen store-bought pizza.

Step 2: Make your own tomato sauce, but use buy ready-made dough.

Step 3: Once you're comfortable with the oven, dealing with dough and making sauce you can move onto making the dough with pizza flour pre-mix. All you need to do is add water, yeast and then knead and prove the dough.

If you find these instructions vague, check out our videos below which will give you an in depth walkthrough of each step. They even include recipes for the sauce and dough.





Accessories

There are many different accessories to aid the pizza making process. You don't need to buy them all at once, start with the essentials and once you're more acquainted with the pizza making process you'll be in a better position to tell what you'll need.

The bare minimum accessories are:

  • Pizza Peel: Without the pizza peel you cannot put the pizza in the oven, turn in or get it out. There are several different types of peels including: 
    • 12" Perforated Peel: These are great for launching your peel into the oven and getting the pizza out at the end. 
    • Turning peel: This peel has a smaller diameter than your pizza and helps you turn the pizza while it remains in the oven.
  • Bamboo Board/Peel: This board is shaped like a peel, but is basically a chopping board with a handle. Once the pizza is cooked, transfer your pizza from the oven to the board, cut the pizza and then you can easily slide the pizza onto a plate. (This is the best way to handle a pizza fresh out of the oven, as at this point it's too hot to touch.)
  • Rocker Chopper: While you can cut your pizza with a knife, a rocker chopper offers more control and is thus safer and more efficient than a knife.
  • Cover: The cover allows you to leave the oven outside or to easily carry it inside or on your adventures.
  • Insulating Gloves: When you've finished making your pizza, the stone will remain hot for some time. In order to clean it, you've need to use purpose built gloves. Otherwise you will burn yourself...badly.
  • Cast Iron Skillet, pan or Grizzler: If you want to use your oven for something other than pizza, such as fish, steak or vegetables you'll need a cast iron pan. You cannot put anything other than pizza straight onto the stone.


Maintenance

Cleaning the Koda oven is surprisingly easy. After you've finished cooking your pizza, you'll find a lot of debris stuck to the stone. To clean it requires little effort on your part, but must be done after every time you use the oven.

Step 1: Keep the oven on for 20mins after you've finished making the pizza

Step 2: With your gloves on, take out the stone, blow or dust off any loose debris.

Step 3: Put the stone back in the oven, but turned 180° and repeat steps 1 & 2

Step 4: Once completely clean, turn off you oven and leave the stone to cool before putting away. 



Other Yummy Projects

Besides Pizza, the Ooni ovens are also great for cooking steak, fish and vegetables. However, you will require a cast iron skillet, pan or grizzler.

View the video below to see how to cook restaurant style steak in the Ooni Koda 12" using a cast iron pan.