Pizza is one of the most popular foods in America. It’s no wonder that more pizzerias are opening all over the country. It’s a booming industry and having the right type of commercial oven can make or break you. It is absolutely essential for any restaurant, whether pizza is your main focus or not, to have the right restaurant equipment. So, how do you know that you’re choosing the right equipment? Here’s a quick guide to help you pick the perfect commercial pizza oven.
What types of commercial pizza ovens are there?
Not all pizza ovens are created equally. What works for the mom and pop pizzeria around the corner won’t necessarily work for commercial operations. You’ll want equipment that can easily handle your restaurant’s needs. There are four main types of pizza ovens.
Most pizza enthusiasts will agree that brick oven pizzas have the most authentic taste. Usually made out of heat-resistant bricks and modeled after ancient ovens, they’re a fan favorite. These are usually fueled by burning wood, but more modern models can use gas or coal. Brick ovens take about an hour to heat up but make up for it by cooking up to twelve pizzas in five minutes or less. This is the best option for pizzerias that have a traditional theme for their establishment.
If you own a restaurant where pizza is not your main focus, this restaurant equipment is perfect for you. A convection oven can handle more than just pizza and most are designed to be compact in size. As a generally low output machine, a convection oven can usually bake five to ten pizzas in about six minutes. The downside is that they may cook pizzas unevenly and leave the edges looking a little burned. If you buy a convection oven, expect some trial and error to find the perfect combination of temperature and time.
It’s obvious where this type of commercial oven gets its name. A conveyor oven has a conveyor belt that will automatically move the pizza through the baking process. These ovens are great for restaurants that need to make a large number of pizzas quickly. This equipment is built to automate the cooking process and therefore requires little to no supervision.
These types of commercial pizza ovens are great for a moderate workload. The simple design means there are no moving parts to maintain and cleaning is easy. They work by heating a ceramic, metal, or stone deck within the metal frame on which the uncooked pizza is placed. It cooks both pizza and toppings at the same time and can usually cook up to 6 pizzas at once. However, the pizzas will need to be manually rotated to get an even bake.
What to keep in mind
Now that you know what types of commercial pizza ovens are available to you, which one should you buy for your pizzeria? Before you make your choice, always keep these five things in mind.
- The space you have available
You should get a good idea of how much space you have for your restaurant equipment. You don’t want to buy an oven and then find out you don’t have the room. Brick ovens are generally large and tend to be placed where customers can watch the process. Conveyors also require quite a bit of space. If your kitchen is more on the compact side, consider a pizza deck or a couple of convection ovens.
- Your highest output
Think about how many pizzas you might need to make on a daily basis. Full-time pizzerias need a much higher output than restaurants that don’t primarily serve pizza. If you expect to have a large number of customers at one time, then a conveyor oven is the way to go. Brick and deck pizza ovens are good for restaurants expecting a fair or moderate amount of customers. For restaurants who only get the occasional order of pizza, convection ovens do the trick.
- The type of pizza you serve
It may seem like a trivial matter, but the kind of pizza you make can impact your restaurant equipment choices. If you focus on smaller, thinner pizzas like New York and Neapolitan, brick and pizza deck ovens may burn the dough. For thin crusts, conveyor and convection ovens can quickly cook both dough and toppings to perfection. On the other hand, if your pizzeria specializes in Chicago or Sicilian style pizzas, you may want a larger option. Brick and deck ovens can evenly cook these thick-crust pizzas with no problem.
- Type of fuel
Does your pizza establishment have the proper hookups for gas or electric equipment? Conveyor, convection, and pizza deck ovens all rely on one or the other. Brick ovens will usually take gas, coal, or wood to keep the fire going. Keep what fuel source you have available in mind while shopping for a new commercial pizza oven.
- Your budget
The number one rule of when you spend money on something is to stick to your budget. Only buy what you can comfortably afford. Tabletop convection ovens are some of the cheapest models, usually in the $100-$10,000 range. Conveyor ovens are more on the expensive side and carry the weight of maintenance costs. Deck ovens have a wide variety of prices depending on who you buy from. The price of brick ovens will largely depend on who builds it for you. Do some research to find commercial ovens that have prices within your range.
Find the highest quality restaurant equipment for your pizzeria
Are you starting a new pizza restaurant or just looking for a new, quality commercial pizza oven? Golden Light Equipment Co. offers high-quality equipment for your restaurant at affordable prices. Give us a call today at (806) 373-4277 or Contact Us by email to learn more about our Products and Services. You can also stop by in person at 1010 SW 6th Avenue in Amarillo, Texas to see our showroom.