Ooni has come up with another amazing pizza oven called Ooni Karu 16 and it is probably the best Ooni pizza oven out there .
In this Ooni Karu 16 vs Ooni Pro 16 comparison, you would know why I liked it more than the Ooni Pro 16 oven which is an OG pizza oven from Ooni.
There are many models of pizza ovens that Ooni produces and most of them are portable.
You can bring them over to your camping trips and tailgating trips or picnics.
Recently, the company has made larger versions of these portable pizza ovens, and they have become instant favorites.
You can cook more in them while having the same power and ease.
This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. Please see my full disclosure for further information.
The Ooni Karu 16 is one of the newer releases from Ooni and it is an amazing pizza oven.
It can cook large pizzas, which means using it when serving more people than usual.
It is an amazing pizza oven that you can still bring on road trips and campings, but it has a larger cooking space.
So with that, we will be comparing the Karu 16 and the same old Ooni Pro 16 by looking at the features, materials, performance, and other things that make these pizza ovens great for your next pizza in your backyard.
Set Up And Assemble
Most portable pizza ovens on the market are pre-assembled or made to deliver in smaller packages. That is why there is not much assembly needed for them.
Both of these pizza ovens from Ooni do not need a lot of assembling.
They arrive as they are, and with a few tweaks, you will be able to start cooking in them.
While these pizza ovens are large compared to the earlier models from Ooni, they are not that heavy.
A single person can assemble the parts and even transfer the whole pizza oven.
The chimney is the only part that needs assembling which is pretty easy to do as it can be installed with a simple twist and turn.
From there, you are almost ready to cook your pizzas.
You will also need to secure the hinges on the doors by tightening the screws.
Pull out the foldable legs and then make sure that you place the pizza oven on a sturdy table before using it.
Although these pizza ovens are lighter than most pizza ovens on the market, they still need a sturdy table to stand on so that they do not have to wobble while they are cooking your pizzas.
You will also need to always use the legs under the pizza ovens as they help in giving the pizza ovens proper ventilation.
It makes way for air underneath to balance the temperature inside.
Also, make sure to set them up away from vegetation and if you are to put them under a roof, make sure that they are 6 feet under the roof so you do not burn anything with the firebox.
Build Quality And Materials
There is no doubt and no need for Ooni to prove how durable its pizza ovens are.
The pizza ovens have the best raw materials that are light yet sturdy and durable enough.
For example, the Ooni Pro 16 is made from brushed stainless steel which is very durable.
Although the pizza oven itself looks thin and light, it is very sturdy and strong.
The stainless steel construction also means that it can absorb heat very well.
The problem with this is that it does not do a good job retaining heat as it can cool down just as fast.
That is why the Ooni Pro 16 has ceramic fiber insulation, this does not necessarily mean that the surface of the Pro 16 is cool-to-touch all the time, but it is safe.
The insulation helps the pizza oven retain the temperature inside even if the weather is pretty cold.
The Karu 16 also has this and is a little different in terms of the materials outside it.
The Karu 16 has carbon steel which is also very durable. The difference is that it has a better way of protecting the interior of the pizza oven from the weather outside when it is cold.
The carbon steel also has a powder-coated finish which only makes it better for resisting any weather outdoors.
You can cook even when it is raining, snowing, or windy outside with this.
Both of these pizza ovens have the iconic foldable legs of Ooni, and since they are large pizza ovens, I did not feel too secure about having a single leg at the back of the pizza ovens.
This category is not too far from each other when comparing Karu 16 and Pro 16.
They have the same size and material used to make the cooking space for a crispy pizza.
The cooking floor of the pizza ovens is all cordierite stone. It is one of the most durable materials that you can use to make sure that there is no moisture left on the pizza dough.
What I mean by that is that the pizza stone helps in removing the excess moisture from the pizza dough.
That way, it can become crispier and will also help in cooking the pizza toppings.
The pizza stone is about 15 millimeters thick, which means it can absorb heat. From there, it releases the heat into the pizza oven and will make sure that the temperature is even inside.
The even heat distribution makes sure that the toppings cook along with the pizza crust.
The pizza crust will not be burn, and the toppings will not be left raw or uncooked during the process.
The size of the pizza stone is around 18 inches which means that it can fit up to 16 inches of dough with just enough room to manage it so you can turn it easily when you need to do so.
While the goal of the pizza stone is to make sure that the pizza inside cooks evenly, I still recommend turning the pizza now and then so that there will be no burnt sides on it.
Since the pizza stone needs to make up for a lot of space, Ooni decided to make the floor with two parts. That way, the parts will also have a little space to expand when heated.
Differences In Features
Aside from the fact that the pizza ovens have different features, they differ slightly, so we will be comparing them here in this category.
The thermometer is one of the most important features of the pizza ovens since you will be needing to measure the time and heat that the pizzas are cook on within the ovens.
The thermometer of Pro 16 is close to the other Ooni models as it is attached to the pizza oven door.
That way, it measures only the temperature inside the pizza oven.
The Karu 16 has its thermometer at the bottom of the door which means that it can continue to read the temperature inside the cooking chamber even if you remove the oven’s door.
Speaking of the door, these pizza ovens are pretty large, so they need to have a door to cover the large opening and prevent the heat from escaping through the front opening.
The Pro 16 has a door with the main idea is to cover the opening enough for the heat to stay inside but still give you a view of the interior.
This made Ooni create a door that has a mail opening which is simply an opening on the door itself to cover the cooking chamber while also being able to see the pizza inside it.
The door of the Karu 16 is more advanced as it covers the cooking chamber fully.
What makes it more advanced is the all-new View Flame feature: a hinged glass door in the middle.
It is a large glass that almost encompasses the whole of the pizza oven door.
This feature allows you to freely look inside the pizza oven without opening the door or allowing heat to escape.
Cooking In The Pizza Ovens
There are not a lot of differences when it comes to the experience of cooking in these pizza ovens.
Both can cook pizzas in just a few seconds, and both can cook the same quality.
The large pizza stone is perfect for cooking during small parties in my backyard.
I was able to cook enough pizzas for up to 5 people in just one go, and it cooked perfectly and quickly.
The Karu 16 was easier to manage because of the hinge on the door that allowed me to place the pizza oven door just under the opening and not on other places on the table.
The door also made it easier for me to look inside the pizza oven as it had full access inside.
The Pro 16 was a bit hard since the opening was smaller and I needed to duck down to view it.
Within just 90 seconds, the pizza ovens were able to produce a delicious pizza with crispy crusts.
This is no surprise since both can get up to a max temperature of 950 degrees Fahrenheit.
When I first looked at these pizza ovens, I thought that there was not much to compare aside from the design.
However, I was able to see the features, and there were so many differences.
I would buy the Karu 16 over the Pro 16 because of its more advanced features and ease of use.
It is one of the best pizza ovens that can cook large pizzas but is still portable.
The Pro 16 is a better choice if you want something that can cook the same pizzas as the Karu 16 but at a more budget-friendly price.
So it is up to you which pizza oven fits your preferences better.
If you like the post then do not forget to share it on social media!