If you are fond of making pizza on a regular basis, you might want to consider buying either pizza steel or a pizza stone. They can elevate your pizza cooking to a whole new level.
In this Pizza Steel vs Pizza Stone post, you would be learning about the different positives of using both of them and which one is a better option than the other.
Compared to a steel pan, the baking stone or baking steel can create a more satisfying pizza fit for your cooking needs. They conduct and retain heat incredibly well which is great for cooking that crispy crust that you love.
There are some noticeable differences between the two but they are both great in baking bread and other food as well.
Most pizza stones absorb oils and other flavors that make every cooking session better. This also allows the stone to be seasoned meaning it becomes stronger through time.
Pizza Steels heat up so quickly and they are great at retaining heat. You can wash them easily and are ready for the next use.
If you are in the middle of the two and you are having a hard time choosing, I will help you decide by talking about their features and performance along with other factors in order for you to decide which is better for you.
Pizza Stones are made to retain heat in order for you to get that evenly cooked crust.
There are some baking stones that let you cook other recipes but make sure that they are not too heavy so the stones would not break.
Pizza Stones are also porous which means that you get all the unnecessary moisture out of the pizza and keep the oil on the stone. This allows you to have that crispy crust with evenly cooked surfaces and different flavors on every cooking session.
Most pizza stones are made out of ceramic or cordierite which is perfect for retaining heat and transferring it on the crust of the pizza.
Pizza Steels do not have much of a difference. They heat up very quickly and retain that heat for a longer time. It transfers heat immediately to the pizza crust and you do not have to worry about the temperature of food.
Pizza Steels are obviously made out of steel which means that they are very sturdy. You do not risk breaking them just by dropping them.
That also means that the pizza steel can reach higher temperatures as it is a better conductor and retains that temperature for a longer time.
Pizza Stones are perfect for crispy crusts on pizza. You can even adjust your dough and it will give you the desired crispiness or chewiness of your crust.
However, they are not limited to pizza alone. You can cook sausages, cookies, vegetables, and even roast chicken on a pizza stone.
The pizza stone, having retained some flavor from other recipes, makes your tortillas, pita, and bread taste better and more flavorful. You do not have to worry about your leftovers from last night as you can reheat them easily with the pizza stone.
The downside of some pizza stones is that they are not advised to put them on direct heat. Exposing them with direct heat such as grills will be risky as they are more likely to break.
With a properly preheated pizza stone, you will get a great pizza within minutes. Depending on the thickness of your crust, you will have the pizza in no time.
Pizza Steels are very great at retaining heat. It goes up to the highest temperature almost instantaneously.
Steel is a great heat conductor so if you put it in the oven, it will take a shorter period of time to heat up compared to a baking stone. This means that you can cook pizza in no time as well.
Cooking other food on pizza steel is great as well. It does not absorb any liquid and other flavors do not stick onto it and you can make other recipes quickly while maintaining their flavors.
Pizza steels can also be used on any heat source. They are immune to thermal shock and can handle higher temperatures than pizza stones.
You can use them on grills to cook steak and other meat with speed. They heat up very fast and you do not need to preheat them for every recipe.
Seasoning and maintenance
When it comes to seasoning and maintenance, you might find it hard to imagine why seasoning baking steel is needed. Pizza stones obviously need to be seasoned for more benefits.
Most pizza stones absorb oil which makes it great for seasoning. They can help in making the stones non-stick.
Most pizza stones need to be oiled or dusted first to avoid dough sticking on the surface. However, with regular use, the stones are seasoned and become non-stick through time.
Pizza stones can last for many years if handled and taken care of properly. You should avoid putting them in places where it may drop as they are fragile.
That means that a simple unnoticed crack can be a factor. You need to avoid dropping a pizza stone at all costs.
Pizza stones are also prone to thermal shock. This means that you cannot put them on a cold surface and then immediately put it in heat.
If your pizza stone is still hot, do not run them in cold water because it can cause cracks. Another thing is that you should avoid putting cold food on a hot pizza stone as it may break it as well.
Pizza steels, on the other hand, do not absorb any fluid at all. But by regular use as well, they can be seasoned perfectly.
Seasoning pizza steels is important to keep rusts out of the surface. You would not want any part of the steel to go with your food.
Breaking pizza steel will be hard so you do not have to worry about it that much. Dropping them will be a small problem as well but you might end up leaving dents on the steel so avoid dropping them as well.
Pizza steel is perfect for any amount of heat. They can handle very high heat and you do not risk breaking them with thermal shock.
Steel is not that fragile and it can handle sudden changes in temperature very well. This means that you can immediately wash the pizza steel right after use even if it is still hot.
You can also put cold food on warm pizza steel and you do not have to worry about it breaking.
Cleaning (Pizza Stone)
There are steps that you can use to clean your pizza stone in order to maintain its features and avoid breaking them.
1. Cool it down first
- As I have mentioned above, pizza stones are not resistant to thermal shock. This means that running them immediately on water after it has been sitting in the oven will crack the stone or even break it.
- You also need to wait for it to cool down to avoid getting burned.
2. Burn the rest
- If there are some pieces of food left on the surface, try and put it back to the oven and crank it up to its highest temperature.
- That will burn the excess food on the stone and will be easier to remove with a scrub.
3. Scrub gently
- Do not use too much force on the stone when scrubbing to avoid scratches.
- Avoid using steel wool or steel spatula to prevent deep cuts on the stone as well.
4. Dry and store
- You can wipe the pizza stone with a dry cloth or with a brush to remove excess dirt.
- After washing the pizza stone, make sure to store it in a room temperature storage.
Cleaning (Pizza Steel)
1. Cool it down
- Just like the Pizza Stone, Pizza Steel needs to be cooled down before cleaning it so you would not burn yourself.
- It may also do harmful things on the steel such as deformation if you put it immediately on cold water.
2. Use proper tools
- If there is extra dough stuck on the steel, use a grill stone cleaning block to scrape it off.
3. Do not use too much pressure
- Do not scrub the pizza steel too hard as it may leave dents and scratches on the surface.
4. Use water and soap
- You can use water and soap if and only if there are rusts on steel.
- Scrub it with sandpaper and wash away the gust from the steel in order to remove the rust properly.
5. Wipe the pizza steel dry with a clean cloth.
Cooking on the Pizza Stone and Pizza Steel
I tried both the pizza stone and the pizza steel with one pizza recipe and they both did great. I also used the same techniques and there are some differences in the output of the two.
I preheated both of them for 30 minutes under 500 degrees Fahrenheit before putting the pizza on them. With the same thickness of the crust and the same ingredients, I judged them on how well and fast they can cook the pizza.
The pizza that I cooked on the pizza stone took longer and there were some burnt spots. I do not know if those burnt spots are caused by dents or scratches but they did not make much difference in the taste.
The pizza steel cooked the pizza a little quicker with a one-minute advantage on the stone. It cooked the pizza evenly and melted all the cheese throughout the surface of the pizza.
The pizza stone produced more taste than the pizza steel. I assumed that this was because of the oils that were absorbed by the older pizza stone which the pizza steel lacks.
Cooking other recipes were great with both as well. They did great on cookies and vegetables but the pizza steel is notably faster.
I liked the slower cooking on the pizza stone when it comes to thicker pieces of meat though. The super high heat on the pizza steel burnt some of the meat while the inside was still raw.
I tried cooking the same thick meat on the pizza steel with lower temperature and it cooked it perfectly. It was a little slower but it tasted great and I attained the right amount of flavor from the pizza steel as well as from the pizza stone.
Deciding between pizza stone and pizza steel is a difficult job. It really depends on how often you want to cook or how well you want the pizza to be.
Pizza Steels and Pizza Stones both perform very well in cooking that perfect pizza with the perfect crust. If you lack a brick oven and you want that pizza that is like it came out of one, the pizza steel and pizza stone can do the job for you.
I advise that you buy them both but if you are considering a cheaper choice due to the budget, then I suggest you buy a pizza stone as it is relatively cheaper and then buy the pizza steel after you made money from your pizza.
If you want to really attain that perfect crunchy crust on your pizza, then consider investing in more expensive pizza steel. Either way, you will be satisfied with the results that both baking surfaces offer you.
Since the Pizza Steel and Pizza Stone are almost identical when it comes to their performance, the main factor here is the longevity. The pizza steel is going to last forever, but there is a chance that the stone can break under really high temperatures.
So, check out both the pizza stone and the pizza steel and tell us which one you like better!
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