1. Onlyfire Pizza Oven Kit
Get it now on Amazon.com
What We Like
- Comes with a 14-inch stone
- Easily wipes clean
What We Don’t Like
- Dismal quality control
- There is a lack of instructions.
- The bottom of a dish will be done before the top
If you’ve ever tried to cook a pizza on a grill and had no luck getting the top and bottom to cook at the same time, then you need the Onlyfire Pizza Oven Kit.
In preparation for using the Onlyfire Pizza Oven Kit, I had previously baked pizzas in a variety of indoor and outdoor ovens using gas, wood, and electricity. The enclosure, pizza stone, thermometer, and peel in this set are compatible with the majority of gas grills. The pizza oven was loaded down with dough, toppings, and even some extras. I’ve formed views after eating a lot of pizza.
Contextualization: Not Ideal
Once the peel came, I had to put everything together. One or more of the holes in the wooden grip were not drilled all the way through, blocking their access. I made an effort to force a connection, but it was weak. Before I could put the peel together, I had to clean up the holes and the screw threads. That wasn’t a major issue, but it was clearly something that got past quality assurance.
To prevent harm, I would file or sand the peel’s sharp edges if I planned to use it often. Warning: “Metal edges may be harmful” was printed on the packaging. It was understandable that the edges wouldn’t be perfect for baking, but I hadn’t anticipated the peel to be a problem.
The design is a touch off
The pizza stone included in this set is designed to sit directly on the grill grates, so the whole package basically amounts to a low-slung stainless steel box with a holder at the bottom. The two fold-up side handles and lightweight design make it easy to transport to and from the grill, however oven mitts are necessary once the gas is ignited.
The pizza can be monitored thanks to a big viewing window in the oven’s front door, which can be flipped up to make room for a large pizza peel while loading and unloading the pizza. Even with my grilling gloves on, I was able to grab the door’s handle. A temperature gauge, which displays the oven’s current temperature, is located on the door’s right side.
The item I was sent had a few problems, unfortunately. Flaps on each side of the door existed where they should have been flush with the body because of poor construction. I contacted the manufacturer despite my lack of concern that the increased airflow would negatively impact my cooking due to the size of the door opening. The cooks, I was told, would not be harmed.
Furthermore, the unit’s base shook and wobbled unsteadily on the barbecue. We don’t have to worry about this happening since we’re not required to come into touch with grates. The fact remains, nevertheless, that there was still another issue with the construction of this pizza oven.
The pizza peel’s manageable size made it easy to transfer pies to and from the oven, but the flimsy metal made me nervous whenever I raised it with a pie on it. A pizza peel’s long wooden handle was useful for sliding pizzas into the oven, but when I put a hefty pizza on it, I found that holding the handle closer to my body provided more stability.
Although the provided metal peel worked OK for testing purposes, I ultimately decided to use one of my own peels made of wood since the dough doesn’t adhere to it.
My 17-inch square pizza kit was designed for gas barbecues. The good news is that it can be used on both a big Weber gas barbecue and a smaller pellet burner. Alternatively, you may get a kettle grill.
Fair performance with a rather high learning curve
The difficulty with grilling pizza is that the bottoms become cooked quicker than the tops due to the grill’s bottom heat source and the release of heat when the lid is raised. This pizza oven kit is mostly enclosed, with a low profile to retain the heat in so the top cooks at the same pace as the bottom.
In any case, that’s the intended result. We preferred this method over using a pizza stone or grill grate, although it wasn’t foolproof. No matter what I did (different temperatures, different pizzas, different dough thicknesses, different amounts of toppings), the pizza’s bottom nearly always finished cooking before the top. Making adjustments to the grill’s heat had little effect on the uneven cooking, since it impacted both the inside and outside temperatures.
An integral part of the instructions was to preheat the stainless steel housing before inserting the stone. In comparison to preheating the stone within the enclosure, this seemed cumbersome and illogical for cooking many pizzas in a succession. After giving it a go using that strategy, I decided to perform a little testing. Checking the stone’s temperature using an infrared thermometer and the oven’s thermometer allowed me to determine the efficacy of both techniques of heating. The enclosure soon heated up regardless of whether the stone was there or not, thus preheating it seemed unnecessary.
The pizzas required to be rotated sometimes because, as is the case with many pizza ovens, they baked more quickly in the rear than in the front. That wasn’t hard to accomplish, but it did contribute to the problem of uneven cooking since heat was lost while the oven door was open.
The oven did a decent job for the most part. Some of the pizzas turned out well after a lot of trial and error. However, even on the occasions when the pizzas turned out properly, the bottoms were always crispier than the tops. I would have liked less possibility of the bottom crust burning and more uniform cooking.
I was thinking about putting a pizza stone on top of the oven before I started using it to keep the heat in. But it shouldn’t be required with this kind of oven; it should function as designed.
The pizza oven’s instruction page was sparse, so I looked it up online and discovered a warning against using the oven with the grill lid down, since doing so may cause the thermometer to blacken and become unusable. Rather to risk damaging it, I baked pizza after pizza without closing the cover.
After making many subpar pizzas with the lid open, I finally decided to ignore the thermometer and cook one with the lid closed. In the end, I was satisfied with the outcomes. The thermometer seems to be functioning well so far. However, this does not guarantee success. Many customers complain in reviews that their thermometer stopped working or changed color, fogged up, or became illegible.
There are several remote-read thermometers available that would work with this oven, and they’re not too expensive. If you want to make a good pizza, it’s probably better to keep the grill lid closed and be okay with the fact that the thermometer may not make it.
I threw a pan of broccoli and peppers onto the grill beside enough pizzas to serve the neighborhood. The fact that the oven has a wider range of potential uses is welcome news.
Stone and stainless steel
Stainless steel, the material used to create the housing, does a decent job of maintaining temperature. But since the metal is so thin, the oven is very portable and lightweight.
There’s a claim that the lid is double-walled for better heat retention, but I don’t believe it. The top seems to be the same thickness as the rest of the oven, so if there is a second layer there, there isn’t much air between them. I assumed there would be a thicker insulating layer between the two walls if they were insulated, as there is with air-insulated baking sheets.
This cordierite pizza stone is 14 inches in diameter and is 14 of an inch thick. It functions in the same way as conventional oven or grill pizza stones. This stone is really removable and may be used independently.
General independent instruction is provided
The accompanying instructions are probably not enough for someone who has never used a pizza oven before, and internet instructions might be confusing and conflicting. The provided piece of cleaning instructions is very difficult to read since it is written over a picture. In an effort to locate additional information or a more user-friendly official handbook, I went online. Reviews on the internet show that many customers have issues with the fact that there are no guidelines provided.
Maintaining a clean environment: a breeze
The pizza stone may either be scraped clean or turned over and baked on to remove any residue left from a spill. The residue may be scraped or washed off, and it just requires water and no soap to clean. The stainless steel housing may be cleaned with a pressure washer or a sponge and soapy water. Expect the stainless steel to darken and the stone to become brown or blotchy over time when they are used in a grill; this is to be anticipated.
High in cost
Since it serves just one purpose and must be heated with a grill, it’s clear that this is an overpriced item. Alternatives that cost less but look the same may be found. Standalone ovens are often the most costly option, and these machines stand on their own.
Compare and contrast the Onlyfire Pizza Oven Kit with the Ooni Karu 12 Multi-Fuel Pizza Oven
There’s no denying that the Ooni Karu 12 Multi-Fuel Pizza Oven, which I also tried, is more costly than the Onlyfire that I evaluated. In contrast, the Ooni Karu provides far more. It’s a separate oven, so you can have pizza baking while you prepare chicken wings and hamburgers on the grill. Better still, it can uniformly cook a pizza from top to bottom in under a minute.
The pizzas cooked on the Onlyfire fared better than those cooked on the grill directly, but the learning curve was high and the absence of clear instruction contributed to hit-or-miss outcomes.
I recommend using a pizza stone in the oven as a low-cost alternative. But if you’re serious about pizza and have a little of cash to spare for grilling outside, I highly recommend saving up for an Ooni Karu.
The results aren’t spectacular, but they grill just OK.
However, I am reluctant to endorse this pizza oven due to the poor quality of the manufacture I experienced with the test oven I got. Perhaps the one I got was an exception and the others are all flawless. Even while I didn’t completely botch the pizzas I made, I wasn’t really impressed with the end product, either. Even though I had better results when the grill lid was closed, I fear that doing so might damage the thermometer.