When you make pizza at home, there is a lot of equipment that you might need to invest in, and each piece of equipment will serve a purpose. One of the most important things you will need is a pizza pan or a pizza stone. But there is a lot of debate on whether pizza stones or pizza pans are best.
A pizza stone is porous, and well give you a far more crisp crust, whereas a perforated pizza pan cannot achieve this as well. That being said, the holes in these pizza pans are designed to allow heat to hit the base of the pizza and can somewhat mimic the baking results of a pizza stone.
In this article, we are going to be discovering which is better; pizza pan vs pizza stone as well as showing you some of our favourite product, no matter which method you choose.
Which Makes A Better Pizza?
The proof of the pudding is in the eating, or so they say, and that certainly applies where baking pizza is concerned. If you want perfect pizza crusts and evenly cooked toppings, then it is important to get the cooking spot on. Your pizza party guests will thank you.
In truth, you can achieve incredible baking results with both a pizza pan or a pizza stone. The most important thing is that you use one that is of high quality. Both types of baking equipment offer excellent heat distribution and will help to make a fluffy pizza crust and toppings that are golden brown if you use them correctly.
Traditionally, Italian chefs would use a pizza stone, but this isn’t to say that some of the modern cast iron pans or stainless steel pizza pans are not great. We gave a run-down of some of our favourite steel pizza pans in one of our recent posts – so be sure to take a look.
The pizza stone will draw out moisture from the pizza dough while it is in the oven, which will give you a crisp pizza bottom and is the best way to achieve a restaurant standard pizza. However, if you opt to use a pizza pan, you must choose one that is perforated as this will allow the heat of the oven to hit the bottom of the food from the moment it goes into the oven and gives the moisture somewhere to escape.
A pizza stone is usually a round piece of stoneware that is used for baking, although there are some types that are rectangular. These pizza stones are full of tiny holes which make them porous, and this is essential when you are cooking pizza since a lot of the pizza dough ingredients are wet, with flour being an exception. If the dough is not dried out during the cooking process, you will end up with a soggy bottom and a crust that is nowhere near as crisp as those New York-style pizzas that famous around the world.
When using a pizza stone, you must remember that they cannot quickly adapt to drastic temperature changes so you must always heat them in the oven before you start baking your food. You would slide the pizza onto the pizza stone using a pizza peel, and this method is quite popular when using a wood-fired pizza oven.
The pizza pan is similar to a stone in that it is a round product often with a non-stick surface that you would use to bake your favourite pizza dish.
There are some pizza pans that do not have, but it is important to find a perforated pan since these will allow the heat to cook the pizza from the bottom in a similar way to the pizza stone. You can heat your pizza pan just like you would with pizza stones, and it can be placed on the top rack of the oven to do this.
The main difference between a pizza pan and a pizza stone is that the pan, being made from metal, is not porous and so will not soak up moisture. Pizza pans are more common products to find in the kitchen rather than as part of the setup for an outdoor oven.
Where a pizza stone might crack if it is exposed to a quick temperature change, a pizza pan will not so they are seen to be more durable.
The Best Pizza Pans And Pizza Stones
it isn’t difficult to see that while there is a clear difference between the pizza pan and pizza stone, both are great for baking a tasty pizza dish in your home kitchen. There are factors to consider when choosing from the vast array of products out there, but we have taken a look at various types and have sourced some of the best pizza pans and pizza stones on the market.
CGH 9776-46 Pizza Baking Sheet
One of the best things about the pizza pan baking sheet is that it has a non-stick surface meaning that your pizza will never stick to the pan – something that many pizza fans have battled with. It is easy to clean, and the style with holes is ideal for allowing the pizza to cook evenly as well as producing that crisp pizza crust.
This is the best pizza pan for smaller pizzas thanks to its compact size; perfect if you want to use it for lunchtimes or for the kids. The metal material makes this durable, and the thin nature makes it ideal for creating a thin crust pizza.
WHLJKN Pizza Pan
You will notice that the material for most perforated pizza pans is steel or aluminium, this is because a cast iron pan is far thicker and this is what retains the heat and instantly starts cooking the pizza from the moment it enters the oven. This aluminium pan is small, at just 8 inches but there are others in the range that vary in size.
The style of this pizza pan is ideal for achieving the perfect crust, and once again, we are looking at a product that will resist any dough, meaning that nothing will get stuck to the surface. It is also easy to clean and thanks to the material.
Blumtal Pizza Stone With Paddle
If you prefer to use a pizza stone, then you might order this incredible piece of equipment that comes with a paddle for moving the pizza in and out of the oven.
A pizza stone will always give you incredible results and a crust that is to die for, and they are so easy to use. This stone heats up very quickly, so it doesn’t matter if you are in a rush. Unlike a pizza pan, these stones are not full of large holes, but this doesn’t mean that the quality will be compromised.
It boasts a non-stick surface; lots of pizza stones and pizza pans will have an oxide finish which is used to prevent dough from becoming stuck.
KateLuo 3 Pack Professional Pizza Pan Set
There are times when you might need more than just a single pizza pan, and that is where this set comes in extremely handy. It boasts three pans, all of varying sizes. You get a 5″ pan, an 8″ pan and a 9″ pan, so you are free to choose the best pizza pan for your needs each time you cook.
Of course, each of the pans is filled with holes to allow you to get a crisp base and fluffy crust. What’s even better is that the pans are very deep so you can easily replicate the deep crust pizzas that are famous in Chicago. However, if you fancy a thinner crust, the bottom of the pan pops out so you can simply place the pizza on top.
VonShef 33cm Pizza Stone
The best part of this pizza stone is that it comes with a metal stand, so once the food comes out of the oven, you can keep it at a hot temperature on the pizza screen – if you aren’t ready to dig into that tasty crust right away. It also comes with a pizza cutter for slicing up your pizzas precisely.
This stone measures 13″ so is great for medium-sized meals – most pizza pans and stone will be between 8 and 16 inches, and depending on the size pizza you want to create, you would select a pan or stone accordingly. 12-13″ is the most common size.
Your pizzas will cook to perfection with beautiful crisp crusts and golden-brown toppings and clean up could not be easier.
Mediterranean Baking Stone
If you want to be sure that your pizza crust will turn out perfectly, then using a top-quality stone is imperative, and you won’t go far wrong with this. It features materials that have been carefully crafted in Italy and can withstand heat up to 1200º – but of course, do remember to heat it up gradually to avoid damaging the pan.
It comes with a handy wooden pizza paddle for serving, which adds to the traditional feel you get from this excellent stone.
Pizza pans are excellent for cooking beautiful pizza with a perfect crust. However, you can achieve just as nice a crust when you use a pizza stone – so which is better?
Pizza pans must be perforated as this will allow the high temperatures to hit the base directly, mimicking the way a pizza stone would cook. Furthermore, pizza pans that follow this design will give the moisture somewhere to go and will prevent you from having a soggy base and crust.
If you don’t want to use a pizza pan, a stone is a great alternative and where pans might be used in a fan oven, a pan might not be as good in a wood-fired grill. The pan might not be able to withstand the super-hot temperatures, so a stone is the better option.
On the whole, both pizza pans and pizza stones will produce great cooking results and which you choose is largely down to your personal preference.
We have put together a list of some of the very best stones and pan products on the market, all of which boast high quality and features that make cooking your favourite food more simple than ever.