Pizza ovens have become a hot item for home chefs seeking that perfect artisanal pizza with wood-fired flavor.
Overview of the Blackstone Pizza Oven
Blackstone utilizes their expertise in high-performance outdoor cooking appliances for this versatile stainless steel pizza oven. It can reach searing temperatures over 900°F to cook authentic stone-baked pizza and so much more.
Blackstone Pizza Oven Key features and specifications:
- Stainless steel construction with double-wall insulation
- Powerful high-pressure burner with adjustable regulator
- Patented rotating stone technology with top and bottom stones
- Heats up to 900°F+ to mimic wood fired oven performance
- Electronic ignition and quiet motorized 12 RPM rotating stone
- 16-inch pizza capacity
- Built-in stainless cart with swivel casters and integrated pizza peel holder
- Sure Spark electronic ignition with protection mode
- Fuel type: Propane tank (20 lb cylinder)
- Dimensions: 44 in. W × 33 in. H × 26.5 in. D
- Weight: 165 lbs
My Pizza Oven Testing Process and Parameters
To provide the most honest and accurate review, I rigorously tested the Blackstone pizza oven over the course of 2 months and 10 pizza cooks.
For context, I have owned and tested a variety of pizza ovens, including several budget-$300 units and the premium $600+ Ooni pizza oven.
I evaluated criteria like:
- Heat up time and temperature capabilities
- Ease of use and cooking experience
- Pizza dough cooking performance
- Versatility beyond just pizza
- Build construction and durability
- Quality of included cart and accessories
- Value relative to competitors
So without further ado, here is my detailed review and overview of my testing results across these criteria:
Blackstone Pizza Oven Performance and Pizza Cooking Experience
Heating Abilities Blazingly Hot and Fast
Right out of the box, I was impressed with how quickly the Blackstone pizza oven could heat up. The powerful propane burner efficiently brings the chamber to 700°F+ in just 10-15 minutes.
It can climb all the way to over 900°F in about 20-25 minutes. The built-in thermometer provides an accurate reading of the chamber temp.
This rapid preheat time is on par with my premium Ooni pizza oven and far faster than cheaper pizza ovens I’ve used. The Blackstone burner generates an incredible amount of heat.
Cooks Authentic Neapolitan Pizza in 90 Seconds
The true test is how well can it cook pizza? In a word, incredibly. At full temperature, the pizza oven bakes authentic Neapolitan style pizza with charred crust in just 60-90 seconds.
The top stone radiates intense heat from above to melt and brown the cheeses while the bottom rotating stone crisps and chars the bottom crust. The results are wood-fired pizza shop quality.
Outstanding Heat Distribution and Consistency
Throughout all my pizza cooks, the oven demonstrated impressively even heat distribution. This is thanks to the rotating stone, dual heating elements, and insulation. The top and bottom of the pizzas cooked evenly no matter where placed.
The oven also maintains its temperature impressively when loading pizzas. I could cook 5 pizzas in a row with no drop in temp or spike in cook times.
Makes Handling Multiple Pizzas Easy
The generous 16-inch cooking surface enables baking multiple personal sized pizzas at once, or doing a large 16-inch pizza.
Unlike some ovens, the Blackstone is not limited to only 12-inch pies. The rotating stone and burner design provide very even heat across its entire surface.
I could cook 2-3 10-12 inch pizzas simultaneously with no issues. When entertaining or feeding a crowd, this allows cranking out pies quickly.
Delivers Authentic Wood-Fired Pizza Flavor
A top priority for any home pizza oven is replicating true wood-fired pizza flavor. Between the super high temps and pizza stone, the Blackstone nails it.
My test pizzas came out with that quintessential charred, blistered crust and a subtle wood-fired taste. Toppings came out melty and nicely browned without burning.
Makes It Easy to Achieve Neapolitan Pizza Characteristics
The extremely hot temperatures allow properly recreating characteristics of authentic Neapolitan pizza:
- Blistered, blackened crust
- Melted, stretched mozzarella
- Thin, tender crust
- Subtle smoky undertones
With pies taking just 1-2 minutes to bake, you can achieve that perfect Neapolitan texture and appearance. The oven replicates the conditions of a 900°F wood fired oven beautifully.
Features and Ease of Use of the New Blackstone Pizza Oven
Quality Construction and Materials
The pizza oven itself is built from 304 stainless steel with a double layer construction to maximize insulation. The cooking chamber is polished to a mirror finish that reflects heat back into the cavity.
All materials from the burner to pizza stones feel very high end. Fit and finish is excellent with no rough welds or edges. The oven feels like it will hold up well over time.
Easy to Assemble Out of the Box
As expected from Blackstone, assembly out of the box is quick and straightforward. It ships with the two core pieces already attached. You simply have to bolt on the cart, caster wheels, back panel, and thermometer.
All hardware and tools are included, and it comes together with easy-to-follow instructions in 30-45 minutes max.
Convenient Features Make Using a Breeze
Thoughtful design features make the pizza oven very simple and convenient to use. A few favorites:
- Built-in pizza peel holder always have peel at the ready
- Shelves for storing tools, wood, pizza ingredients
- Propane quick connect line no need for tools
- Smooth rolling casters easily move oven around
- Integrated cord wrap keep cord neatly stowed
It combines the performance of a premium pizza oven with family-friendly features.
SureSpark Ignition Lights Instantly and Reliably
The SureSpark ignition immediately fires up the powerful burner at the push of a button. There is no tedious charcoal chimney starter required.
It lit on the very first try every time during testing. I never had to retry ignition, which can’t be said for many pizza ovens. It makes firing up the oven quite literally a push button.
Intuitive Controls and Thermometer
A simple propane gas dial lets you adjust the flame intensity, while the ignition button turns the burner on/off. It couldn’t get much easier.
The built-in thermometer also takes the guesswork out of preheating. You know exactly when the oven is ready for pizza when it hits that 900+ degree sweet spot.
Blackstone Pizza Oven Versatility
Don’t let the name fool you, you are not limited just to pizza in this oven! Here are some of my test cooks beyond pizza:
Flawless Steak with Amazing Sear
At 900°F, the pizza oven delivers the ultimate steakhouse quality sear. Steaks came out beautifully crusted yet still juicy.
I did have to watch closely to avoid overcooking since the heat is so intense. But for quick searing, it beats my grill hands down.
Delicious Wood-Fired Salmon and Veggies
The oven adds wonderful smoky flavor to vegetables like asparagus, broccoli, peppers, and potatoes. Just toss veggies right on the stones.
Meaty fish like salmon achieves a lightly charred exterior without overcooking the interior thanks to the speed of the oven. It’s great for quick tasty wood-fired meals.
Blistered Flatbreads and Naan
The pizza oven excels at all kinds of flatbreads beyond just pizza. I loved making blistered naan, garlic breads, and flavored flatbreads. The crust bakes up beautifully in 60-90 seconds.
Smoked Chicken Wings to Perfection
For perfect crisp-skinned wings, I tossed them right on the stones with a touch of smoke wood. The super high heat crisps the skin while smoking adds flavor.
Much More Beyond Just Pizza
Other ideas I’m excited to try include shrimp, lobster tails, wraps, skewers, bruschettas, and so much more. The oven truly functions as an outdoor multi cooker thanks to its straight heat and live fire.
Blackstone Pizza Cart and Included Accessories
Heavy Duty Stainless Cart
The stainless cart comes included to provide a sturdy base for the 165 lb oven. It feels very solid and supports the weight of the oven when moving it.
Integrated Propane Tank Storage
A lower shelf on the cart accommodates propane tanks up to 20 lb. There are also clips to secure the tank and prevent rattling or tipping over.
Having the tank integrated into the cart itself makes for a cleaner, more contained look that takes up less space.
Convenient Storage for Tools and Supplies
In addition to the tank, there are two roomy shelves perfect for storing your pizza peels, ingredients, wood chunks, oven brushes and any other pizza night supplies.
Everything can be kept neatly organized right on the cart for easy access while cooking. No need for a separate table or cart.
Easy Mobility With Smooth Rolling Casters
Four all-terrain rolling casters are included to make it simple to move the entire oven/cart assembly. The front two casters can lock to keep it stationary during use.
I effortlessly rolled it out of my garage right onto the patio. The casters handle grass, bricks, or concrete with no issue, and lock securely in place while cooking.
Integrated Pizza Peel Holder
A dedicated slot on the right side of the cart allows vertically stowing the included pizza peel while cooking. You always know exactly where the peel is located.
The handle rests perfectly in the custom holder so the long paddle end doesn’t touch the ground. It’s a very thoughtful addition.
Blackstone Pizza Oven Included Accessories
Having the right accessories can make all the difference when cooking pizza. Here is an overview of what comes in the box:
Aluminum Pizza Peel Essential for Loading Pizzas
A 14.25 inch aluminum pizza peel is included for effortlessly launching pizzas into the oven. It features a thin edge that easily slides under the pizza dough without catching or tearing it when loading.
The long handle and light aluminum material gives plenty of leverage for launching pies. It’s a high-quality peel that any pizza chef needs.
Integrated Pizza Stone Removal Tool
The end of the included peel features an integrated stone removal tool designed to clear the stones of any stuck on debris.
After extended use, you may need to scrape the stones clean. The built-in metal scraper on the peel does the trick nicely.
Infrared Thermometer Takes the Guesswork Out
Knowing the exact oven temperature is key for pizza success. An infrared thermometer is included to give accurate real time temperature readings.
Just aim the laser at the top stone through the oven door and get instant feedback of where the temp is at. Take the guesswork out of preheating.
Recommended Blackstone Pizza Oven Accessories
While the pizza oven comes well equipped to start cooking, here are some additional accessories I recommend picking up:
Steel Brush For Cleaning Pizza Stones
Eventually pizza debris will accumulate on your stones. A long handled steel brush makes cleaning them off easy. Don’t risk scratches from the peel scraper.
Aluminum Pizza Peel To Launch Multiple Pies
The included peel is great, but having a second peel speeds up continuously loading pies. I’d recommend a perforated aluminum peel.
Infrared Therm/Probe Monitors Food Temps
Use an instant read thermometer for monitoring food doneness. The infrared helps monitor the oven temp itself.
Having both tools gives you temperature knowledge and prevents under/over cooking.
Smoke Tubes For Extra Wood Fired Flavor
Add a touch more smoky flavor using smoke tubes loaded with wood chips or pellets. The built in smoke alone is great but smoke tubes enhance it further.
Pizza Oven Cover For Outdoor Storage
Unless storing your oven indoors, be sure to buy a heavy duty cover to protect from the elements when not in use.
Pizza Cook Times at Each Temperature
Achieving the perfect pizza requires preheating the oven to the ideal target temperature. Here are approximate pizza cook times at varying temperatures:
- 700°F 2-4 minutes
- 750°F 1.5-3 minutes
- 800°F 1-2 minutes
- 850°F+ 60-90 seconds
I recommend preheating to at least 800°F+ to achieve proper Neapolitan pizza characteristics in a fast 1-2 minutes.
Tips and Tricks for Owning the Blackstone Pizza Oven
After extensive testing, here are some pro tips I’ve learned for getting the most out of your Blackstone pizza oven:
- Let it fully preheat and wait for it to hit 900°F before cooking.
- Use an infrared thermometer to monitor exact temp.
- Load pizza quickly and close the door for fastest cooking.
- Use lighter pizza pans or stones thick stones retain more heat.
- Rotate pizzas if any hotspots develop.
- Brush excess flour off stretched dough before loading pizza.
- Don’t overload with too many toppings or dough will burn.
- Add a smoke tube for extra wood fired flavor.
- Oil peel lightly between pizzas to prevent sticking.
- Have a second peel handy for launching multiple pies faster.
- Let the oven fully cool before trying to clean pizza stones.
- Store indoors or purchase a protective cover if leaving outside.
Learn more tips in my video tutorials showing the Blackstone pizza oven in action!
Comparison to Other Top Pizza Ovens
How does the new Blackstone pizza oven stack up to competitors like Ooni, Gozney, and others? Here is a detailed features comparison:
Blackstone vs Ooni Karu
- Blackstone heats up faster thanks to powerful propane burner
- Ooni only uses wood as fuel more work to manage temps
- Both use dual pizza stones Ooni stones are cordierite
- Blackstone easier to use with electronic ignition
- Ooni Karu has more accessories available
Blackstone vs Gozney Roccbox
- Gozney uses dual fuel (wood & gas) whereas Blackstone is gas only
- Blackstone has faster preheat time than Roccbox wood/gas mode
- Roccbox offers premium ceramic pizza stones
- Both use rotating pizza stone technology
- Roccbox only cooks up to 12” pizza, Blackstone does 16”
Blackstone vs Bertello Outdoor Pizza Oven
- Blackstone much faster preheat time (~25 min vs 1+ hour)
- Bertello uses lower direct flame vs Blackstone’s indirect heat
- Blackstone burner more powerful (46,000 BTU) vs Bertello (15,000 BTU)
- Both feature built-in thermometers
- Blackstone accommodates larger 16-inch pizza
The Blackstone pizza oven holds its own against top competitors with faster preheat, larger capacity, and superior heat distribution thanks to its indirect burner and rotating pizza stone technology.
Should You Buy the Blackstone Pizza Oven?
At a MSRP of $799 including the cart and accessories, the Blackstone Pizza Oven sits at the higher end of the price spectrum for home pizza ovens. Is it worth the investment? Here is my verdict after extensive testing.
Reasons to consider buying:
- Blazing fast preheat time unmatched by competitors
- Cooks 16-inch pizza unlike many ovens limited to 12-inch
- High temperatures (900°F+) ideal for Neapolitan pizza
- Super versatile beyond just pizza
- Quality construction and materials built to last
- Generous 16” cooking surface to handle multiple pies
- Excellent heat distribution from rotating stone
- Features like integrated peel holder for convenience
- Accommodates propane tank inside cart
- Includes core pizza making accessories
Downsides to consider:
- On the pricier side at $800 but you pay for quality!
- Can only use propane no wood or charcoal fuel option
- Cordierite pizza stones better than included pizza stones
- Some complaints of unreliable igniter requiring replacement
For the home pizza fanatic or frequent entertainer who will get regular use from the oven, I believe the Blackstone pizza oven is worth the premium investment and outperforms comparably priced competitors.
That said, those just looking for occasional pizza ability may be better served by a more budget-friendly option under $500.
So should you buy the Blackstone pizza oven? If you love pizza and see yourself using it at least weekly, I wholeheartedly recommend going for it! Just be ready to make A LOT of pizza!