So you have bought yourself a pizza stone, and we congratulate you on that. You need to know the best temperature of your pizza stone.
There’s no doubt that a pizza stone could prove a worthwhile investment on your part simply because of how it helps you produce amazing pizza at home. But we do see a bit of a problem.
Getting the right temperature leads to a better crust and one you enjoy. So, what is the best temperature, and how big a difference does it make?
We plan on checking out and answering those questions for you today.
Your pizza stone should be an absolute minimum of 500F. It’s best if you get it closer to 550F as a minimum.
But don’t worry if this sounds as if it’s exceptionally hot. The average pizza stone is capable of withstanding temperatures as high as 900F, and that’s impressive.
However, this temperature is more important than you think. If your pizza stone is less than 500F, you can expect to run into a whole host of problems, and the odds of you enjoying your pizza will not be in your favor.
The Importance of Getting the Stone to the Right Temperature
Failure to get your pizza stone, and this applies no matter the brand, to the correct temperature will mean one thing, a bad crust.
A temperature below that 500F minimum will make your crust soggy, a bit cold, and generally disappointing.
You see, you need the heat in the stone to help bake that crust. The stone will make a significant difference to the crunch you can then achieve with your crust, so it makes sense that you need heat to do that.
Pre-heating is Key
Here is another important thing, you should not place your pizza on a cold pizza stone and then allow the oven to warm things up for you. Instead, pre-heating the stone remains the most important thing of all.
You must place your pizza stone in the oven and allow it to heat up. You want it to start working on the base of your crust as soon as you place your pizza on there.
That instant hit of heat will help get more of a crunch to your crust, and that’s what we all want when it comes to our pizza.
Why a Pizza Stone Works
The modern conventional oven is a great invention. However, it’s not that great when it comes to getting the traditional pizza experience.
The point we need to make is the need for the crust to have this exposure to high heat almost immediately. This makes such a difference to the crust and the crunch you can achieve, and it’s that crunch we always want with our pizza.
A pizza stone for use at home can closely copy what happens when a pizza is cooked in a traditional brick oven. With a brick oven, the heat is transferred to the brick surface.
That surface then holds the heat and starts cooking the crust as soon as it’s put on there.
Not using a pizza stone will lead to a difference in cooking time and ability between the toppings and the crust.
The oven is great at cooking the toppings, but the crust is left behind.
What you then get is the perfect topping, but you get to that bite with the crust and cannot help feel disappointed in your entire experience.
How to Correctly Pre-heat a Pizza Stone
So we have spoken about the need to pre-heat the pizza stone and get it up to temperature, but you probably want to know how to do this? Well, it’s easier than you may have imagined, so you have no excuse not to do it correctly.
You need to set your oven to the correct temperature. As we have already said, it needs to be a minimum of 500F for this to work.
Allow your oven to warm up, and then place the pizza stone in the oven. Pre-heating will take 45 minutes to one hour, so you need to plan ahead with this.
But we have a warning. Some people claim their pizza stone is hot enough after 15 minutes. Honestly, while we know you just want to cook your pizza, that 15-minute window is not long enough.
After 15 minutes, your pizza stone has only managed to move past the cold temperature it was before you placed it in the oven. If you go ahead and place your crust on this stone, then almost nothing will happen.
The only thing that will happen is you will feel very disappointed in your pizza, and that’s what we aim to stop.
The Difference the Time Will Make
We are not saying that your pizza will simply not cook if you fail to get it to that 500F. Also, the length of time your pizza stone takes to warm up will vary slightly. But what difference does the time make to your pizza?
If you only place the pizza stone in the oven for 15 minutes, then chances are your pizza will come out rather disappointing.
You may find the very edge of the pizza becomes crispy. But we do mean just the edge. The middle of the crust will not exactly come across as raw, but it’s not far off raw.
That means it’s soft, mushy, and just absolutely horrible.
Warming the pizza stone up for 30 minutes does improve the 15-minute pizza, but it’s still far from perfect.
It won’t come across as raw or uncooked as it does after 15 minutes, but it’s still far from cooked.
The crust has almost no crunch, and it’s still completely white. It has no color, and it’s amazing how a pale white crust changes your perception of taste just by the visual alone.
With a 45-minute long pre-heat, you will find we get close to producing the perfect pizza at home on your pizza stone.
At this point, the crust takes on a browner color, and you experience more of a crunch and the general idea that the crust has cooked.
It usually ends up with the crust having the same texture across the entire base rather than just on the edges.
At the 45-minute mark, you do get something that you would expect to find from a pizza stone, and we doubt you will find yourself disappointed with the result.
If you prefer even more color to your crust, we suggest going for the 60 minutes mark with your pre-heating.
In one hour, you should have the perfect crispy pizza, which will have a lovely brown color across the entire crust.
If you prefer a crispier pizza, we would always suggest pre-heating the stone for those 60 minutes.
Remember, you will still be cooking the pizza for the same length of time no matter how long you pre-heat the stone.
You can see with those descriptions how important pre-heating is when it comes to a pizza stone.
Eating the first two pizzas would not be a nice experience, but things change completely when you get to the 45-minute mark.
This also applies no matter the brand of pizza stone you own. That will not make a difference.
To get the best out of your pizza stone, you must get it up to a minimum temperature of 500F.
Anything below that will often mean a bad pizza crust, and your entire pizza experience is ruined.
A pizza stone can completely transform how you enjoy your pizza. You need that high initial heat to seal in the crust resulting in that crunch you always want. A pizza does not taste the same if that crunch is missing from the base.
We suggest indulging in a pizza stone if you wish to make pizza regularly at home. It completely changes everything, and you will then discover how your regular oven is just not that good at baking pizza.
You don’t need to go ahead and take some sort of temperature from the pizza stone. The key is pre-heating in the oven for at least 45 minutes with the oven at the right temperature. If you do this, it’s easy to get the pizza stone to the temperature you need.
So if you wish to go for something more authentic and have amazing pizza, invest in a stone and just make sure you hit those high temperatures first. We can guarantee you will love the outcome.