An outdoor pizza oven isn’t just for cooking great pizza whenever you want, it’s also great for cooking and baking a whole slew of popular foods that a conventional grill might be used for.
Let’s find out what else you can cook in a pizza oven that will give you more reasons to get creative with your recipes.
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Popular foods to cook in a pizza oven
Related Post: 6 Reasons To Get an Outdoor Pizza Oven for Your Home
Even if you have an outdoor built-in pizza oven or a portable pizza oven, you can enjoy a variety of dishes that are placed into a standard oven or a BBQ grill. You’ll have more room with a dome oven than you will with a portable pizza oven. The only difference is that dome ovens let you cook more than one item at a time, while portable models only allow one dish at a time aside from just pizza.
The list of foods included here is simply general ideas to give an idea of what else can go into a pizza oven. You can always find recipes online that appeal to you depending on the type of food you want to make and how it can best fit in your pizza oven. Obviously, recipes like beer can chicken, or a rack of ribs won’t fit inside a slim pizza oven but would work fine in a dome oven.
· Bread and flatbread
· Dutch oven recipes
· Pan-cooked food
No matter what you’re in the mood to eat, these dishes take the most time, but not nearly as long as most ovens might take. This is when you need to decide which meal you’re going to prepare and if it needs to go into a pan or a tray. As long as your cooking tray fits inside a portable pizza oven, it’ll work fine.
Here are some popular recipes and dishes that are always fun to make.
· Pan-seared steak
This method works best in a cast-iron skillet or pan that’s entirely made of iron, so don’t use any plastic handles for this one. You’ll take advantage of the high heat around 540-600 degrees Fahrenheit to cook your steak like a rib eye or anything that’s a bit fattier than most steaks.
· Roasted chicken or turkey
This method uses any cut of chicken or turkey that can fit in a roasting pan and sits above a metal rack so the heat gets underneath. The heat for this is best when you have 450-540 degrees Fahrenheit to get the best roast.
Although any casserole dish will work, use a metal casserole pan due to the heat involved. You want to heat your oven to 450-540 degrees Fahrenheit to cook this dish achieving an excellent crust on top when it’s done. Great for Mac and Cheese and many other oven-baked favorites you might know.
· Salmon filets
This is a great method to roast salmon filets with heat set around 450-540 degrees Fahrenheit. You can use a pan, though the best method is using a slab of wood that you would normally use for smoking or barbecuing. Soak the wood in water before laying your filets on it and allow the steam to help cook these filets. The overhead heat will provide a great roasted surface.
· Grilled shrimp
These are best when pan-grilled with a bit of butter and topped with some lemon. These won’t take long at all and can also double as a side dish or starter if you like. You’ll want at least 540-600 Fahrenheit to grill these in your pizza oven.
You can’t have a main dish without adding a delicious side dish. These can be prepared before your main dish and will hold their heat until you’re ready to serve. Just cover with some aluminum foil or allow them to sit in their pan until you can put them all together on a plate for family and friends.
· Roasted corn
Most folks love fresh steamed corn on the cob when you grill them on the BBQ, so set the pizza oven to 540-600 Fahrenheit and be sure to use corn that still has the husk on it. If not, you can still get away with aluminum foil wrapped around each ear of corn you put in.
· Pan-roasted vegetables or ratatouille
Once again you want to use a shallow metal pan so you don’t get thermal shock from 450-540 degrees Fahrenheit heat. The advantage here is that the high heat cooks your veggies fast so you don’t lose any of the nutrients that get lost when cooking them in your home oven.
· Gratin potatoes or baked potatoes
The amazing crust that you get from 450-540 degrees Fahrenheit pizza oven is perfect for these dishes using a cast-iron skillet or metal casserole pan. You can up your game by adding cheese and toppings in the last five minutes of baking.
· Focaccia or flatbread
As you know already, bread bakes better at 500+ degrees Fahrenheit, so ideally you can start when peak temperatures are at artisan pizza level. These go well as a snack too, but depending on what you add, these are nice added sides for meals as well.
· Camembert or Brie
These are cheeses that will be gooey and tasty additions when roasted at 450-540 degrees Fahrenheit. Place these inside small baking dishes for the best effect if you buy them as little pucks wrapped in their rind. They’ll be perfect for dipping when used in combination with flatbread or focaccia.
These are fun before or after a meal and are very easy to keep hungry groups from waiting too long for the main dishes. The nice part is that these will be ready in a matter of minutes. Even frozen bites such as premade meatballs with dipping sauce are perfect too.
· Nachos and cheese
You won’t need much heat to warm up nachos but with 320-400 degrees Fahrenheit heat, this is perfect for melting nacho cheese. You can also spice it up a bit by adding some pickled jalapeno slices or any other toppings you love over the top so they get roasted as the cheese melts.
· Mini kebabs
Take some wooden skewers and a variety of meat and veggies that are roasted at 540-600 Fahrenheit heat for a few minutes. Lay your skewers over a metal pan so the juices drip into the pan and not all over your pizza oven.
· Sourdough pretzels
There’s nothing like fresh-made pretzels baked at 500+ degrees Fahrenheit heat, but you will need to make your dough beforehand. As soon as your oven hits peak temperature, these will cook as quickly as pizza dough. These will make a great snack with some fresh mustard and sprinkled sea salt.
· Pizza muffins
Just like you would make regular muffins, you want 500+ degrees Fahrenheit to make these pizza muffins a smash hit. Just layer the inside of the muffin trays with pizza dough and add sauce, toppings, and cheese over the top. Be sure that your pizza dough has some semolina or 00 flour on the underside so they don’t stick.
If you have a sweet tooth for desserts, your pizza oven will come to the rescue to bake many types of favorites that are quick and easy to make. Most people never think that pies or crumbles are possible, but now you can put a new twist on s’mores and rice crispy treats. Nearly any cookie or brownie recipe will do for this task making them delightful additions to your pizza oven.
· Pies and crumbles
Take an ordinary pie pan and make your dessert pies using 450-540 degrees Fahrenheit heat. You’ll want to cook these ahead of time to allow the insides to cook off so your guests don’t burn their tongues.
You can select any ready mix or home recipe to cook these in a pizza oven that’s 450-540 degrees Fahrenheit. You can add these to any conventional baking pan or tray and have them cook in mere minutes.
· Cinnamon rolls and carrot cake
These classic desserts are pleasant comforts when your pizza oven has reached 450-540 degrees Fahrenheit. Keep an eye on heavier cakes so they don’t burn and allow them to cool down before serving them.
· S’mores or rice crispy treats
Some of the easiest things to make around a campfire are perfect for a pizza oven that’s dropped to 320-400 degrees Fahrenheit. Using medium to large baking trays or pans, these heat up gooey ingredients very quickly. These will also need some supervision to prepare them and let them stand for a few minutes before eating.
Is cooking in a pizza oven healthier?
Cooking outdoors always has an element of feeling more connected to healthy eating, but the truth is hard to hide. Pizza ovens add a new twist to regular cooking that’s added with real heat generated by a wood-fired oven. Pizza oven heat has always been more efficient at cooking meals quickly since the top and bottom are evenly cooked. The added flavors that are baked in from burning wood fuel help add original flavors you can’t get elsewhere.
Why is your pizza oven temperature important?
When foods are cooked in a pizza oven, the time is reduced since the temperature is much higher than in conventional ovens. Vegetables are preserved more for their vitamin content and you get less chance of veggies that are mushy and bland tasting. Besides being able to cook food faster due to the high heat, some pizza dome ovens are perfect for making stews, soups, and food inside Dutch ovens which require lower temps for longer periods.
What are the benefits?
The main benefit is being able to use your pizza oven for more than just making pizza. If you’ve ever wondered what else can you cook in a pizza oven, there isn’t any limit if a cooking vessel fits inside. It also gives you a chance to cook entire meals outdoors if you don’t want to fire up a BBQ pit or if you also plan to add pizza to your menu. Truly, the best advantage is experimenting with favorites you’ve made in your oven in a very different way.
Related: 5 Things You Need to Know Before You Buy an Outdoor Pizza Oven
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