Ooni vs. Solo Stove vs. Stoke: Best Pizza Ovens (2023)
Making pizza at home can be a fun and tasty experience. It can also be a frustrating experience if you are not quite sure what you are doing. In considering Solo Stove vs. Ooni, or a competitor like Stove, there are notable differences between the features and price points.
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See our high-level takeaways below, or skip to our full review!Our Take:
- Options For Any Preference
- Hard To Turn Pizza In Small Ovens
- Highest Quality
- Reaches 950 Degrees In 20 Minutes
- Cooks Pizza in Just 60 Seconds
- 1% For The Planet Member
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- Signature Airflow
- Only One Size
- Demi-Dome Heat Retention
- Ceramic Insulation
- Gas Burner or Wood-Fired
- Stainless Steel Durability
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- Incredible Value
- New Brand
- Accessories Included
- 365-Day Trial Period
- Never-Ending Warranty
- 4th Leg For Stability
- Heat-Resistant Shell
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If you're looking for the best backyard pizza oven, there are a few things you'll want to consider. Ooni is the most well-known brand, but Solo Stove built a strong reputation for smokeless fire pits and recently rolled out its first-ever pizza oven. Stoke is also worth considering if you're looking for an affordable entry-level model.
In comparing Ooni vs. Solo Stove vs. Stoke, there are a few key differences between the brands, and we will help you decide which one is right for you.
Ooni vs. Solo Stove vs. Stoke
Making pizza at home can be a fun and tasty experience. It can also be a frustrating experience if you are not quite sure what you are doing. Indoor ovens work great for cooking a frozen pizza, but if you are interested in restaurant-quality pizza night, you need an outdoor pizza oven that reaches above 700 degrees Fahrenheit.
That's why brands such as Ooni, Solo Stove, and Stoke have gained so much in popularity. If you care about authentic-tasting pizza, you know your indoor oven isn't good enough.
What Is The Best Outdoor Pizza Oven?
While pizza ovens are not new, for a long time, they either came in the form of permanent structures in your backyard or big and bulky equipment you didn't have room for. Then Ooni changed the game, and brands like Roccbox were ready for the ride.
In the past few years, most people decided on a pizza oven after comparingOoni and Roccbox, but new pizza ovens like those from Solo Stove and Stoke are changing the game.
But do Solo Stove and Stoke stack up against Ooni's wide selection of pizza ovens? Let's dive in to find out.
Just make sure that you learn how to properly clean your pizza stone to preserve that authentic taste! You will be glad you did, because any of these pizza ovens make fantastic pizza.
Ooni Pizza Ovens
Ooni blazed the path in developing outdoor pizza ovens for residential use. Before Ooni, a wood-fired oven would have to be constructed in your backyard. An authentic experience was only accessible to the wealthy.
But now, it is straightforward to purchase an Ooni and set it up in your backyard and grill perfect pizzas on high heat. And that high temperature is the key. Pizza stones absorb moisture, and temperatures reaching as high as 900 degrees Fahrenheit cook a nice crisp crust.
Wood-Fired Ooni Ovens
While several multi-fuel ovens are designed to work with wood chunks, the Ooni Fyra is designed to work exclusively with wood pellets. The Ooni Fyra is probably Ooni's most portable pizza oven.
The Fyra is big enough for 12" inch pizzas, and at only 22 lbs, it isn't heavy. The Ooni Fyra's compact size is too small to fit wood logs or even wood chunks. Instead, the Fyra features a unique pellet hopper, similar to what you might find on a Pit Boss or Traeger smoker.
The pellet hopper feeds fuel to the fire as it burns and, in some ways, is a more consistent heating source than the chunked wood because it is fed consistently and evenly.
The Ooni Fyra is an excellent option if you often find yourself on the go, and the pellet hopper offers authentic, smoky wood flavoring. If you want a larger outdoor pizza oven or wood pellets don't feel original enough for you, check out the multi-fuel models featured below.
Gas-Powered Ooni Ovens
The reality is that cooking with wood provides unique flavoring that you don't get with gas oven-cooked pies. Still, gas-powered ovens offer significantly more control. With a gas-powered oven, you turn a knob, allow the oven to heat up to its maximum temperature, and you are good to go.
The gas-powered Ooni Koda is available in two sizes. The 12" Ooni Koda is the more portable pizza oven that makes personal-sized pizzas. These smaller pizza ovens will work well in your backyard outdoor space but are particularly enticing if you envision taking your pizza oven on your beach and mountain getaways.
It is worth investing in the 16" Ooni Koda if you have a family or plan to cook for friends and gatherings frequently. Those 16" pies naturally feed more people. Aside from that, we find the larger ovens easier to work with. Because the openings are larger, it is easier to work with your stainless steel turning peel and pizza peel.
The Ooni Koda reaches cooking temperature in under 20 minutes. When cooking at the maximum temperature (950 degrees Fahrenheit), you can cook your stone-baked pizza in only 60 seconds. Whether you choose the smaller model or the larger model, you can turn out multiple pizzas quickly.
If there is one downside to the Ooni Kodas, they don't have a built-in thermometer. This makes an infrared thermometer necessary to ensure your pizza cooks at the correct temperature. An infrared thermometer (also called an IR thermometer) will work fine, so this isn't a deal-breaker, but it is worth noting.
Ooni Multi-Fuel Pizza Ovens
There is no reason to bury the lede here. Ooni multi-fuel pizza ovens are industry-leading appliances that provide convenience when needed and more sophisticated flavor when desired.
Ooni made the best outdoor pizza ovens on the market for many years, and the multi-fuel Ooni Pro led the way. The Ooni Pro works with charcoal or wood chunks or with the gas burner, which is sold separately. While the Ooni Pro was for many years the standard, the Ooni team introduced the Karu in multiple sizes, and it is even more of a game-changer.
If you can't decide which fuel source is right for you, the Ooni Karu is the best choice.
The smaller Ooni Karu 12 multi-fuel pizza oven has a sleek, stainless steel look reminiscent of the original Ooni Pro. If you want a do-it-all portable oven that will get your pizzas cooked in only 60 seconds, go with the Ooni Karu 12.
With all of that considered, the Ooni Karu 16 might be the best residential pizza oven that money can buy. In fact, it is the only personal pizza oven to be 'Recommended for Domestic Use' by the Associazione Verace Napoletana, which is the premier authority on Neapolitan-style pizza.
The Karu 16 features a glass-hinged door with ViewFlame technology that increases heat retention within the oven while maintaining visibility. But saying that it is a glass-hinged door is underselling the feature. The Ooni Karu 16 has a super tall cooking chamber, which means it will fit much more than pizza, and the ViewFlame technology enables you to monitor whatever you are cooking up for dinner.
The Karu 16 also features a built-in thermometer. There is no better portable pizza oven.
Is Ooni a Good Brand?
Ooni is a slightly higher price than the competition, but they offer something for everyone, and their Ooni pizza ovens are incredibly high quality. If you are looking to save space or looking for a portable pizza oven that you can take on a camping trip, the Ooni Fyra allows for wood-fired flavoring in a small package.
The Ooni Koda is propane-compatible and available in multiple sizes, while the Ooni Karu is a multi-fuel appliance that will completely change how you think about dinner.
Cooking with wood and charcoal-fueled flames creates undeniable flavoring, and Ooni not only pioneered domestic pizza ovens but continues to innovate authentic experiences. Home chefs everywhere are changing up their weekly menu because ofOoni in ways that they haven't since sliced bread.
In our estimation, the Ooni Karu 16 may be the best outdoor pizza oven that money can buy.
Solo Stove Pizza Ovens
Solo Stove is perhaps the best-known maker of the stainless steel fire pit. In many ways, the Solo Stove name is synonymous with the smokeless fire pit in the same way that Ooni is synonymous with backyard pizza ovens.
But Solo Stove has evolved beyond smokeless fire pits, entered the backyard market with a grill, and is now set to take on Ooni and Roccbox with the introduction of the Solo Stove Pi pizza oven.
Solo Stove Pi Pizza Oven
The Solo Stove Pi pizza oven is only available in one size, but it is a gorgeous outdoor pizza oven made from the same handsome stainless steel as its fire pit siblings. And while it would be easy to introduce an outdoor pizza oven that is the same as every other outdoor pizza oven, Solo Stove put innovation thoughtfully into their new backyard appliance.
What do we mean? The Solo Stove Pi pizza oven isn't built with a smokeless design like the fire pits, but it does feature an advanced airflow design that promotes heat circulation and a whole convection-style cooking experience.
Additionally, the demi-dome chamber further facilitates proper airflow that allows for an even bake across your pizzas. The upper portion of the Pi pizza oven also includes ceramic insulation to support heat retention.
The advanced airflow, demi-dome construction, and ceramic insulation result in a pizza oven that will cook multiple pizzas evenly without needing to reheat the oven in between pizzas. Your homemade pizza cooked in the Pi pizza oven will maintain consistency between pies.
The other big game differentiator is the panoramic opening, which is only made possible by the heat circulation and retention features listed above. Most outdoor pizza ovens either feature a door or an opening so small that it is hard to get the pizza in and out.
Because of the innovative design, the Pi oven can get away with a super-wide opening that makes it much easier to turn your pizzas on the pizza stone.
Solo Stove Fire Pits
Solo Stove offers fire pits in a variety of sizes. The Solo Stove Bonfire and Yukon are the most popular models you might consider pairing with the Solo Stove Pi pizza oven. All of the Solo Stove stainless steel fire pits feature smokeless fire technology.
If you are considering a fire pit, the bonfire is the most popular model, which is just the right size for a small family and can easily move around the backyard. The Solo Stove Bonfire is also portable enough to take on a weekend trip.
The Solo Stove Yukon is much larger and intended to be stationary. It is big enough for large gatherings, but not so big that you wouldn't enjoy it on your own. You can design a patio or garden area with the Yukon as a centerpiece. The Solo Stove team truly offers something for everyone.
The smallest, ultra-portable fire pit is the ranger, but it is intended for more beach and mountain getaways than a permanent spot in your backyard. If you plan to choose an ultra-portable pizza oven like the Ooni Fyra, the Solo Stove Ranger will go nicely with it. The Solo Stove Pi is too big for a weekend getaway.
Is Solo Stove Pi Worth It?
The Solo Stove Pi is worth the investment. When it comes to smokeless fire pits, and comparing brands like Breeo and Solo Stove, Breeo might have a slight edge on durability and quality. The same is true in comparing Solo Stove's pizza oven to brands like Roccbox and Ooni.
Still, Solo Stove came out with a bang, and we love their pizza oven. It is ahead of Roccbox and many other mainstay brands in terms of quality. Only the Ooni Karu 16 may be a complete pizza oven.
And if you are designing the perfect backyard space, there is something to be said for pairing beautiful stainless steel accessories together. That is where Solo Stove shines above the competition.
Heck, buy a pizza oven bundle that includes stainless steel pizza peel, a pizza cutter, and a shelter (cover). Then when you are ready, go ahead and buy a Bonfire bundle, too.
Stoke Pizza Ovens
If Ooni and Solo Stove are a little out of your price range but still interested in purchasing an outdoor pizza, you should know that the Stoke outdoor pizza oven is perhaps the best value among the best outdoor pizza ovens.
The Stoke pizza ovens are affordable, but they aren't built cheaply. Instead, the Stoke pizza ovens are designed to be sleek and efficient. They may not feature some of the bells and whistles that some other brands offer, but most consumers don't need them.
Gas-Powered Stoke Ovens
The Propane-powered Stoke pizza ovens are available in two sizes. The smaller 13" model is genuinely perfect for those that need a portable pizza oven. It comes with a carry case, and it is effortless to set up and move as required. If you plan to take it with you, you need to make sure that you have access to propane wherever you plan to set up your new pizza oven.
The larger 16" model offers more space to make a larger pie and provides you with more reason to maneuver. One of the downsides to the ultra-portable pizza ovens is that the openings are so small that it can be challenging to turn your pizza.
The bigger gas-powered Stoke pizza oven provides you with extra room to turn your pie and get it in and out of the oven.
Wood-Fired Ooni Ovens
In considering the best outdoor pizza ovens, preference still plays an important role. While a gas burner is much easier to control than a wood fire, gas flames don't produce the same great taste as wood-fired flames.
The Stoke wood-fired oven only comes in one size for now, so that is also something to consider. Nonetheless, the choice is pretty simple. Choose the Stoke stove with a propane burner if you want your oven to get hot quickly and stay hot with little effort.
On the other hand, hardwood smoke flavoring is critical if you are interested in authentic tasting pies. That smoke flavoring cooks right into the crust, and the results are undeniable.
Is Stoke A Good Brand?
The fact that Stoke includes necessary accessories in the primary purchase price of the pizza oven makes the brand an incredible value and very affordable to the average consumer. This is especially true when you consider that the trial period for a Stoke stove is a whopping 365-days. The Stoke team also offers a never-ending warranty.
Still, the keyword above is "value." It is one thing to create an affordable appliance and another to create a high-quality appliance that is sold at an affordable price. The Stoke pizza oven walks this line perfectly. Stoke stoves are sleek, cook great pies, and feature everything you need and nothing you don't.
Baking Neapolitan Style Pizza
Neapolitan-style pizza is the most common pie cooked in outdoor pizza ovens. A hot oven is one of the keys to a crispy crust, but there are a few other tips worth considering as you start your backyard pizza connoisseur journey.
Homemade Pizza Tips
Naples, Italy is known for making the tastiest pizzas in the world. Since pizza was born in Naples, you better believe that they do it better than anyone else. Putting an authentic Neapolitan slice of pizza in your mouth is an unparalleled experience.
It all starts with the ingredients. The traditional Italian dough is made with 00 flour, which features more elasticity than American flour. The high elasticity allows for a thinner dough, which will result in a crispier crust.
You will notice that authentic sauce is slightly different from most American sauces. Authentic pizza calls for placing San Marzano tomatoes right on the crust. No added sugars or other seasonings are necessary. You can make a sauce with fire-roasted tomatoes and simple herbs and spices such as basil and oregano for a slightly more American feel.
Does The Pizza Stone Matter?
The way you bake your pizza matters more than you might think. Even if you don't have one of the outdoor pizza ovens listed above, you can still find a baking stone for your oven. Of course, we recommend choosing from the ovens above, all of which come with a pizza stone.
The pizza stone is essential because it helps absorb moisture from the dough while evenly distributing heat across the bottom of the pie.
Is Store Bought Dough and Sauce Good Enough?
We won't judge you for using store-bought dough and sauce if you are just getting started. We did the same when we were in a hurry. Still, for the most authentic and flavor-packed tastes, we recommend that you use a wood-fired oven, and slowly learn how to make your ingredients from scratch.
Better Than Your Favorite Pizzeria?
At one point, eating brick oven pizza was a treat reserved for date night, but the brands above make the same results achievable in your backyard. Ooni, Solo Stove, and Stoke are among the best outdoor pizza ovens available and certainly are our favorites. So which should you choose?
Which Pizza Oven Should You Choose?
In considering Solo Stove vs. Ooni, or a competitor like Stove, there are notable differences between the features and price points.
For the gold standard in pizza ovens, choose the Ooni Karu 16. As a reminder, it is the only domestic pizza oven 'Recommended for Domestic Use' by the Associazione Verace Napoletana.
For something new and innovative, consider the Solo Stove Pi, which features a signature airflow design, demi-dome construction, and ceramic insulation. Plus, it will look great with your Solo Stove Bonfire.
If the Ooni Karu and Solo Stove Pi are too expensive for you, opt for the Stoke Wood-Fired Oven, which is incredibly sleek and completely functional. It might not have all the advanced features, but it cooks a pie very well and is much more affordable.
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