How to choose a pizza pan
Making great homemade pizza is easier than it may appear, and shouldn’t be daunting. With the use of a pizza pan, there’s no messing around with stones and peels, which makes the process a breeze. Just press your dough into the pan, add toppings and bake!
Keep reading to discover everything needed before buying the perfect pizza pan, including some recommendations, such as our top pick, the Lodge Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Pizza Pan.
What to consider about pizza pans
Pizza pans come in all sizes, ranging from 9-inch pans to make personal pies to 20-inch pizza pans to make pizzas for the whole household to share. There’s no right or wrong answer when it comes to size, so long as the pan fits in the oven.
The vast majority of pizza pans are circular, as this is the most common and traditional pizza shape, and what we love about using a pizza pan rather than a pizza stone is that it’s easier to get a uniformly round shape. However, there are also square and rectangular pizza pans for making styles of pizza that are four-sided, such as Detroit-style pizza.
Most pizza pans are made from steel or aluminum with a non-stick coating. These are lightweight and affordable. They’re easy to use since there’s little chance of sticking, and there’s no ongoing upkeep involved, other than washing the pan after use.
Users can also find cast iron pizza pans. What’s great about cast iron is that it retains heat well, generally resulting in a crispier crust than you’d get using a steel or aluminum pan. The downside with cast iron is that there are more steps for maintaining it, as users must keep seasoning topped up to maintain the non-stick coating. That said, a well-maintained cast iron pan can last several lifetimes.
What to look for in a quality pizza pan
High heat resistance
Pizza pans’ designs allow them to withstand relatively high temperatures. However, the best pizza recipes use the hottest setting an oven can handle. If the maximum temperature a user’s pizza pan can withstand is 425 or 450 degrees, the finished pizza might not be as good as hoped. Pans that withstand extreme temperatures also work on grills or in pizza ovens.
A quality non-stick coating can be a blessing. However, you need to be careful with non-stick coatings to prevent scratching from metal utensils. They can also wear over time, especially if washed in the dishwasher.
Whether it’s better to buy a deep or shallow pizza pan will depend on the type of pizza the household is craving. New York-style pies are easier to handle in a shallow pizza pan, while deep pan pizzas are best cooked in deep pans, as their name suggests.
Cost of a pizza pan
The majority of pizza pans cost $15- $50, but large cast iron pizza pans can cost over $100.
Pizza pan FAQ
Should you grease a pizza pan?
A. Users can grease a pizza pan, but they don’t always have to. Using a non-stick pan should prevent the pizza from sticking, but this can change over time as the coating deteriorates. Even if the pan is completely non-stick, some deep pan pizzas can benefit from having a drizzle of olive oil at the bottom of the pan to help the crust crisp up. When making thin-crust pizzas, don’t oil or grease the pan, but sprinkle some cornmeal or semolina instead to prevent sticking.
Do pizza pans need holes?
A. Some pizza pans are perforated with small holes. The idea behind this is to increase airflow and heat transfer into the base of the pizza to allow quicker and more even crisping. While some people swear by perforated pizza pans, others find them no better than solid pizza pans, so the choice is yours.
What’s the best pizza pan to buy?
Top pizza pan
What you need to know: This heavy-duty cast iron pizza pan is perfect for serious pizza lovers who want to cook at high temperatures.
What you’ll love: The sizable 14-inch diameter is excellent for making pizzas to share, and it’s pre-seasoned with vegetable oil to prevent sticking. It also includes loop handles for easier use.
What you should consider: It’s on the pricey end of the spectrum.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top pizza pan for the money
What you need to know: This is a large, durable pan for those who want to make deep-dish pizza.
What you’ll love: It has excellent heat conduction for even cooking, making the base nice and crisp. It can also use it for thin-crust pizzas.
What you should consider: It can be hard to remove thin-crust pizzas. Coating easily scratched by metal utensils.
Worth checking out
What you need to know: This is a standard pizza crisper pan with a perforated base for better airflow and a reliably crispy crust.
What you’ll love: It measures 14 inches in diameter, so great for making large pizzas for groups, and the handles make it easier to get out of the oven.
What you should consider: The non-stick coating deteriorates over time.
Lauren Corona is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money.
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