The Best Pizza Steel For Crispy, Blistered Crusts

If you’re a pizza lover and desire to make pizzas with crispy, blistered crusts, then the best pizza steel is a must-try. The steel baking stone will help you cook tastier pizzas than your ordinary baking tray: thin, crispy on the outside, and chewy on the inside.

Finding good pizza steel, however, is never an easy task. You have to spend hours searching numerous models to find the right one for you. Most buyers also complain about models that don’t work as advertised and end up getting disappointed.

After hours of searching the market for the top-rated steel baking plates, making numerous comparisons, and analyzing previous users’ opinions, we found the following reliable models that stand from the rest.

What is a Pizza Steel And Benefits of Using Pizza Steel

Pizza steel is a baking plate purely made from steel and is used for making pizza. It also goes by the name baking steel. The fact that this tool is 100% made of steel makes it extremely durable and gives it excellent heat conductivity properties.

Apart from making pizza, this appliance is multi-functional and is also used for baking bread and other baked goods.

Compared to other baking tools like pizza stones, pizza steels tend to exhibit way better and faster heat transfer to foods—this is its secret to delivering quick cooking times and crispy pizza crust!

Here is a quick list of the benefits of using pizza steel to make pizza at home:

  • Exceptional heat conductivity

One of the key benefits of using pizza steel is that it’s extremely efficient at conducting heat. It moves heat to the pizza crust more quickly, allowing for faster cooking time. Moreover, steel retains heat better than stones, further speeding up its cooking process.

  • Virtually indestructible

Steel is known as an ultra-tough, ultra-durable material. And the fact that baking steels are purely made of steel means they are virtually indestructible and will serve you for a lifetime and some more.

They also won’t easily crack or break if you drop them accidentally.

The only thing that may affect their longevity is rust but proper seasoning will help prevent rusting and corrosion and enhance its durability.

  • Resistant to thermal shock

Another benefit of using pizza steels is that they’re extremely resistant to thermal shock and are less likely to break when exposed to extremely high oven temperatures quickly.

  • Incredibly versatile

Just because they come labeled as “pizza steels”, it doesn’t mean that they’re only meant for making that crispy pizza…you can use your steel to perfectly bake a variety of other foods including bread.

Besides, they double as griddles on stovetops and allow you to easily griddle various types of foods.

You can also use it on your cast iron skillet, place it atop the grates of your outdoor grill, or even use it as a chilled surface for ice creams, pastry-making, or confections.

  • Easy cleanup

The main aspect that makes the baking steel easy to clean is its flat surface. Another reason is that the surface is completely non-porous and doesn’t absorb any oils or chemicals, further making the cleanup easy.

On top of it all, the pizza develops a nonstick coating with continued seasoning and use, which makes cleaning it a breeze.

(We’ll get into specific details on how to clean your pizza steel—keep this tab open!)

Video: Is A Pizza Steel Worth Buying?

Our Best Pizza Steel Reviews

1. NerdChef Steel Stone

The NerdChef steel stone will completely change the way you make pizza at home with better blistering, gorgeous crusts, and faster cook times than your old baking trays. The model comes in up to 3 thickness options to choose from according to your needs.

Proudly made in the USA with laser-cut, high-quality American steel, this stone is extremely durable and unbreakable and you might even pass it to your grandchildren.

This steel will deliver up to 20x faster transfer of heat than ceramic stones and double the heat capacity, resulting in crispy, delicious pizza crust and faster cooking times! It is also pretty heavy and will hold heat with variation, even if you fire pizza after pizza on it.

Finger holes drilled on the steel corners will make it much easier for you to handle this baking plate or even allow you to hang it to a wall.

Cleaning the surface is also quite easy because it comes bead-blasted and smoothened by hand to minimize friction and ensure it slides easily.

Pros:

  • made in the USA
  • extremely durable
  • comes in 3 thickness options
  • excellent heat distribution
  • pre-seasoned surface
  • easy cleaning

Cons:

  • quite heavy for some oven racks
  • high price point

2. Artisan Steel – High Performance Pizza Steel

This is also a nice pizza steel 100% made in USA with quality steel. It is a solid and heavy-duty piece of baking tool that will last a lifetime. And it won’t break under extremely high oven temperatures.

Artisan steel is high-performance and offers a .25-inch thick highly conductive surface than the stone surface of wood-fired ovens, enabling you to easily bake super-crispy and bubbly pizzas in a fraction of time than it normally takes.

The surface is low friction to facilitate easy sliding and easy use. At only 16lbs, this steel feels a bit lighter than our previous model and won’t easily overwhelm your oven racks.

Unlike pizza stones, this steel is multi-purpose and can also be used for frozen for cold serving or to prep cold slab ice cream. You can even use it to roast veggies in your BBQ or use it at moderate temperatures to bake rustic bread.

A set of easy-to-understand instructions are included in the box to guide you on how to use and take good care of this steel as you continue using it.

Pros:

  • made in USA
  • solid and heavy-duty construction
  • low friction surface
  • ultra-conductive steel surface
  • makes crispy and bubbly pizzas
  • multi-purpose

Cons:

  • some users complained their steel came rusted
  • poorly finished edges might cut your hands

3. Conductive Cooking Square Pizza Steel

If you’re looking for the best pizza steel to enable you to make restaurant-quality pizza at home, this model is a viable choice. Featuring a 14 x 14-inch square shape, the steel offers you an ultra-conductive surface for creating brick-oven-like pizza perfectly and quickly.

The 100% USA-crafted model features high-quality low-carbon steel for exceptional durability and longevity. It comes in two thickness options, the thinner 3/16-inches model and the 3/8-inch thicker model.

Faster cooking times become a reality with this steel plate. Unlike the other baking plates that take up to 25 minutes to get your pizza ready, this super-conductive plate will make it ready in just under 5 minutes!

Moreover, its consistent and even temperatures across the surface will give your pizza the tastiest crust you’ve ever had in your life!

Smooth and drag-free surface of this steel enables your pizzas to slide on and off easily, so you won’t have to worry about the dough sticking and leaving behind a mess.

Pros:

  • made in the USA
  • two thickness options
  • ultra-conductive steel surface
  • smooth, drag-free surface
  • fast cooking times

Cons:

  • takes long to preheat
  • big and heavy design makes cleaning a challenge

4. Fire & Slice Pre-Seasoned Carbon Steel Pizza Pan

So you want a thicker steel plate to meet your needs for faster cooking times and be able to cook many pizzas at once? If that’s your case, then you’ll find this Fire & Slice pizza pan a worthy investment for you.

This pizza plate is made to cook hot and fast while remaining unaffected by rapid temperature changes like the clay and ceramic stones. It is proudly made in the USA using quality materials and guarantees you a lifetime performance.

Apart from the ½-inch model, you can also get this steel pizza pan in 1/4-inch, 3/8-inch, giving you a choice between thin, thick, or something in between.

The manufacturer sends this pizza pan to you double pre-seasoned. This is a rare gesture because it will keep the pan from rusting. But more importantly, it will create a nonstick surface and ensure you make flavorful pizzas at home.

When not baking pizza, you can use this workhorse as a square baking pan, griddle for your indoor/outdoor stovetop, or as a grilling stone or oven stone for cooking your favorite veggie and protein.

Pros:

  • made in USA
  • extreme sturdiness and durability
  • double pre-seasoned
  • superior heat distribution
  • varying thickness options
  • multi-purpose
  • easy to clean

Cons:

  • extremely heavy for some ovens
  • poor finishing on the finger holes
  • quite thick and takes longer to heat

5. Pizzacraft Square Steel Baking Plate

The Pizzacraft Square Steel Baking Plate is easy on your wallet compared to other steels on this list. Despite that, it has a super-conductive surface and will let you whip up professional pizzas in a matter of minutes.

Its quality is great and it feels like a solid piece of steel that will last forever. No possibility of cracking or breaking like the pizzas tones. It is also well finished and has no sharp or rough edges that might end up injuring you.

Heat distribution is excellent for this baking plate and ensures all corners of the plate get the same amount of heat. This eliminates the possibility of hot spots and ensures you get uniformly browned pizzas. The plate will also hold temperatures for longer.

You’ll like that this black square plate is armed with a hole in the corner to enable you to easily handle it or hand it on the wall in case you don’t want it to remain in your oven all the time.

For perfect pizza cooking results at a great price, this Pizzacraft square model is your go-to cooking device.

Pros:

  • solid steel construction
  • comes pre-seasoned
  • excellent heat distribution
  • makes perfect crispy crust pizza
  • fairly priced
  • cleans with a damp cloth wipe

Cons:

  • may rust quickly if not well cared for

6. Sur La Table Baking Steel

Are you wondering what could make a perfect gift for your loved ones who are crazy about pizza or simply love baking at home? If yes, why not gift them this best pizza steel from Sur La Table and help them upgrade their pizza game?

This baking plate is proudly made in USA, Hanover, Massachusetts using top-quality, heavy-duty steel for a quality, long-lasting investment. It is heat safe up to 1800 degrees F, so it will hold up to extremely high oven temperatures without bending or twisting.

Featuring a square design, this steel is a quarter-inch thick and has stunning heat conductivity and distribution. It boasts 8x better heat conductivity than ceramic stoles—resulting in crispier pizza crusts that are chewy, just like the ones you get at your local pizzeria.

Don’t forget that this steel plate also cleans up pretty quickly. It is multi-purpose and doubles as a griddle. It is compatible with convection and induction cooktops. You can use it as a hot plate or cold plate.

Pros:

  • made in USA
  • virtually indestructible
  • multi-purpose steel plate
  • produces stunning, crispy crusts
  • easy to clean
  • withstands high oven temperatures

Cons:

  • highly vulnerable to stains

7. Hans Grill Pizza Steel

Time to upgrade your pizza game with this reasonably priced Hans Grill pizza steel. Like the other baking steels featured in this guide, this model is built to last and will never break or shatter. If you give it good care, it will last a lifetime!

It comes in a square-ish 14 x 14 inches design and has a thickness of ¼-inches. It conducts 30% more heat compared to the traditional pizza stones, enabling you to cook your favorite deep-dish pizza faster than ever before at home. The high heat conductivity also gives your pizza a crispy and blistering crust and makes it even tastier.

The steel plate comes pre-seasoned with food-safe linseed oil, so it has a non-stick coat that lets your pizzas slide on and off its surface easily.

Because this is multi-purpose pizza steel, you can use it as a hot or cold plate. You can use it as a flat surface for cooking on with your grill or chill in the fridge and place it over ice to use as a cold serving slab.

Cleanup is hassle-free for this steel and you don’t need any excessive scrubbing. Just a gentle wash by your hands will make the surface clean and ready for next use.

Pros:

  • premium quality steel construction
  • fair price point
  • thicker for superior heat retention
  • exceptional heat conductivity
  • forms crispy pizza crust
  • suitable for cold foods as well

Cons:

  • both front and back can rust easily

8. Fane 1/4 x 16″ x 16″ Steel Plate

If you’re tired of repeatedly replacing your pizza ceramic stones which keep breaking for no reason, perhaps this virtually indestructible Fans steel plate will prove as a better alternative for you.

This is a high-quality product that comes at a great price point compared to the higher pried steel models. It is made from the same A36 grade steel that other manufacturers use to make pizza steels, yet they put exaggerated price tags on them.

It has a nice heft so you should handle it with care. With a 16×16-inch square design, this pizza stone comes in just the perfect size to make the cooking of various types of pizza easy for you.

The steel plate is ¼-inch thick and will preheat for around 45 minutes. Once it gets hot, it distributes temperature evenly across its surface with its excellent conductivity properties. This results in faster-cooked pizzas with that crispy crust you’ve always desired.

The only problem with this pizza plate is that it is industrial steel, so it arrives very dirty and might not have the nice finish and fancy look as in other steel stones. Nonetheless, you just need to give it a few scrubs and it is ready for use.

Pros:

  • unbreakable piece of steel
  • larger than most of the pizza steels
  • good value for money
  • easy to maintain

Cons:

  • doesn’t come pre-seasoned
  • arrived in a dirty state
  • poorly finished edges and corners are a bit sharp

9. Primica Pizza Steel Baking Stone

The Primica pizza steel baking stone is another highly recommended best pizza steel that will transform your home oven into a pizza oven that makes restaurant-quality pizzas.

Nice crispy bottom on the pizza base makes your pizza treats better and tastier. And this is exactly what this steel baking stone enables you to achieve with just your home oven.

The ¼-inch thick stone is capable of reaching extremely high temperatures while still maintaining an equal distribution of heat. This is key for reduced pizza cooking times and crispy crusts, just like you can make with the classic wood-burning pizza oven, only that this time you’re not relying on firewood or natural fuel.

The size (16” x 13.4”) is great too and will enable you to prepare larger pizzas easily. Cleaning the stone is easy and a set of instructions are included to guide you through the entire process. When not using it to make pizza, it can double as the best baking steel for bread.

Because this stone is also designed to easily drain grease, fat, and oil away, it also promotes a healthier cooking experience for your pizzas. Its sleek black surface gives it a minimalist aesthetic appeal.

Pros:

  • super-easy to clean
  • exceptional heat distribution
  • makes gorgeous crusty with even browning
  • great price point

Cons:

  • takes longer to heat up

10. Deedro Round Stainless Steel Pizza Pan

The Deedro round baking steel for pizza is unique from the other models on this list because it is made using stainless steel. This not only gives it a natural luster and smooth surface but also makes cleanup breeze compared to the non-stainless steel plates.

Despite this unique design, this pan is also built to last. The heavy-gauge stainless steel material is rust-free and warp-resistant and won’t break or shatter like pizza stones. It is safe to use in standard and convection ovens and has superior thermal shock resistance.

When it comes to baking your pizza, this round pan evenly distributes heat across the entire surface to eliminate undercooked or undone spots while giving your pizza that mouthwatering crispy crust your desire.

Smooth, mirror-finished surface ensures easy release of your pizzas after baking and you’ll never have to deal with your pizzas sticking on the plate. The Deedro pan has a smooth rim without sharp edges to offer comfortable handling and easy transportation without harming your hands.

You can use Deedro for home as well commercial pizza baking. It is compatible with both conventional and conveyor ovens.

Pros:

  • thick gauge stainless steel construction
  • rust-free pure stainless steel
  • hassle-free cleanup
  • dishwasher safe
  • beautiful mirror finish
  • non-toxic; no chemical coatings

Cons:

  • raw doughs tend to stick on the surface

Things to Consider When Buying Pizza Steel

When shopping for the best baking steel for the first time, it is normal to feel lost and clueless about where to start your search. In this part, we have outlined some important factors that will help you easily choose the right steel for you.

Size

You should start by checking the size of the steel model you plan to buy. Make sure it comes in the right size to easily fit in your oven.

To be sure, you’d want to take the dimensions of your oven to help you easily determine which model will hassle-freely fit inside.

Shape

The shape the pizza steel comes in should play a role in your selection process. You’ll find the baking steels in shapes like square, circle, and rectangular.

Rectangular models are the best choice we recommend to you because they tend to offer you more room around your pizza while making it easier to remove your pizza.

They’re also more versatile and will easily accommodate other types of food you might want to bake at home.

Thickness

We discussed this crucial factor earlier and mentioned that the right thickness of pizza steel will depend on your unique needs—i.e., the number of pizzas you intend to cook and how fast you want to cook them.

However, you should choose the right thickness depending on your oven cooking capabilities.

If you get pizza steel that heats at a faster rate than your oven, then you’re most likely going to end up with an unevenly cooked pizza.

For instance, if your oven has a lower maximum temperature setting than the performance of your steel, then you should go for a thinner model to increase the likelihood of cooking your pizza evenly and perfectly.

If, on the other hand, you have a more powerful oven, you should be on the thicker models so that it heats the bottom of your pizza at the same speed the oven ceiling radiates heat onto the top part of your pizza.

Budget

Don’t forget to keep the amount of cash you plan to spend on pizza steel in mind. These baking devices can cost you anywhere from $50 bucks all the way up to $150 or more.

The price is usually influenced by the size and quality of a model.

If you plan to make pizza frequently and want to make them good, with the crispy crust, and your budget allows, you can get a high-end steel pizza.

However, if you plan to make pizza occasionally and you’re on a tight budget, you might want to not go for a ceramic pizza stone instead.

How Thick Should a Pizza Steel Be?

Pizza steels are usually categorized into thin and thick models. The thickness for most models on the market today runs from 3/16-inch to as thick as ½-inch.

That said, thickness is a key factor to consider when buying pizza steel because it directly the baking time as well as the number of pizzas you can consequently cook on your pizza baking steel.

Thick steel tends to retain more heat and this is beneficial in reducing the baking time.

Thicker steels also enable you to cook more pizzas, one after the other, since you won’t have to wait for the unit to heat up again.

To understand this, picture what happens when you place frozen pizza on the steel surface. It causes the temperature to drop. Since the cold pizza is blocking the surface it sits on from getting reheated, the temperature will drop further for every pizza you cook.

Since a thick model retains more energy and holds temperatures better than a thin model, it will be able to cook more pizzas one after the other compared to the thin models.

Due to the high heat that comes with a thick model, it tends to make your pizza crisper, and the chances of finding charring on your pizza are higher.

However, thick steels will require a longer preheating time than thin models.

Don’t forget that the thicker the steel is, the heavier it becomes and the higher its pricing point.

Overall, how thick your pizza should be will depend on how many pizzas you intend to cook and how faster you want to cook them.

PRO TIP: If you have a restaurant and regularly cook a run of pizzas and water to cook them first, go for a thicker model (but be ready to spend more). If you only cook a few pizzas in your home, lean towards the side of thinner 3/16 models.

Pizza Steel VS Stone – Which is Best?

Pizza steel and pizza stone are two baking tools designed to accomplish the same job of cooking pizza by transferring heat directly into its base.

However, there’s an ongoing debate on which of the two makes pizza better than the other. Needless to mention, the main thing setting them apart is the type of material used on each. Other than that, how do they compare?

Our quick guide will bring out the key differences between the two options to give you a clear picture of which one is best for you.

  • Durability: Steel is, hands down, the winner here due to its virtually indestructible nature. Stones like ceramic are vulnerable to cracking or shattering if accidentally dropped or banged. The stones are highly vulnerable to thermal shock and are highly likely to crack or break if exposed to extremely high temperatures quickly.
  • Heat conductivity: Pizza steels boast excellent heat transfer and retention and are the winner in this category. Pizza stones, on the other hand, are made using different materials such as ceramic, cordierite, and clay. While all these materials conduct heat pretty well, they are no match for steel. For this reason, pizzas made using stones take longer to cook and may lack the light, crisp base you get with pizza steel.
  • Affordability: stones are more affordable than steels, and this explains why they’re more common in many homes. The price difference between the two options is so vast that you can save as much as $50 bucks by choosing stone over steel.

So, that’s how the two pizza baking tools compare in key areas. For this quick comparison, it is crystal clear that steel is the best performer and the winner.

If you’re a professional pizza maker, steel will be the best option for you because it will help you make tastier pizzas at a faster rate. For occasional, home-based bakers, the inexpensive pizza stone will make a good choice for you.

How to Clean Pizza Steel?

Just like any other baking appliance, your pizza steel needs cleaning after every use to make it ready for the next pizza baking session.

Below are the key steps to follow to clean your pizza steel correctly:

WARNING! Before we can even get into the specific cleaning steps, we would like to warn you to only clean your baking steel after it has cooled down. You don’t want to get serious burns on your hands by cleaning it hot!

Step 1. Scrap it off

The first thing you need to do is scrape off those huge chunks of burned dough on your steel surface. A bench scraper or spatula will do the job perfectly well.

Step 2. Wipe it down with a damp cloth

Once you have the big chunks of burnt food off the surface, you can now use a damp cloth or sponge to wipe the surface. This step will help eliminate those smaller burnt-on foods particles and stains that didn’t go away in the first step.

Step 3. Use cleaning block

If some stains and marks prove stubborn and refuse to go away, resort to using a cleaning block. Chances are high you have for cleaning your bbq within reach. Or you can easily find one from the local stores.

NOTE: Don’t use dish soap or any kind of detergents to clean your steel surface. Use warm water and elbow grease instead. Also, DON’T put your steel in the dishwasher as this might end up damaging the steel.

Step 4. Dry it

Once your steel is completely clean and spec-free, wipe it off with a soft dry cloth and store it in a dry area to prevent it from getting attacked by rust.

Final Verdict

Not all the pizza steels out there will please you, so you should be careful which model you choose to ensure it will meet your specific pizza baking needs. We have just listed the top-rated, most dependable models above to help you narrow down your choices for easier selection.

We’re now confident that you’ll have an easy time deciding the best pizza steel to order today and start making good pizza that’s crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside.

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