Pizza on a Baking Steel

pizza | Breadin5

After a year of our readers recommending the Baking Steel, I’ve finally given it a try. It is a little surprizing that this hadn’t happened earlier, since I have every other baking surface ever created. As you know, if you read my review of baking stones, I love my Lodge cast iron baking “stone,” but it isn’t perfect. The round shape makes it a bit hard to make baguettes and the lip around the edge makes it tough to clean. The handles on the Lodge are convenient for getting it in and out of the oven, but it means I can’t lay a baking sheet on top of it, so I have to take it out of the oven before baking anything on a baking sheet. None of those things prevented me from using it constantly, until I got the Baking Steel. The shape of the steel is more conducive to baking beyond just pizza and there is no lip or handles to work around. Just like the cast iron, the Baking Steel is virtually indestructible, heats up a bit quicker and conducts heat really well. In fact, I think the steel is the best heat conductor of any of my “stones.” The Baking Steel is a bit more expensive than my other stones. Is it worth it? For me, yes. The shape and heating properties make it worth the extra money, and I’ll use it daily and so it’s worth the investment. The fact that I don’t have to worry about it ever breaking (even on the grill) is a comfort as well.

baking steel | Breadin5

The dimensions of the baking steel 14×16 inches.

If you’d like a chance to win a Baking Steel with carrying case and a copy of our book, Artisan Pizza and Flatbread in Five Minutes a Day please leave a comment below about your favorite pizza. (The package is only available to be shipped in the USA and subject to all our regular contest rules.)This giveaway is over!

pizza 07

I made a breakfast pizza with prosciutto, cherry tomatoes, sautéed kale, soft goat cheese and fresh thyme, baked on our olive oil dough with an egg cracked on top.

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I rolled this one out a little thicker so that the crust would be nice and puffy.

pizza 04

This is our traditional Margherita pizza with our homemade tomato sauce, mozzarella and fresh basil.

pizza | Breadin5

Happy baking!

The good folks at Baking Steel sent this product for me to test and give away, but the opinions are all me!

705 thoughts to “Pizza on a Baking Steel”

  1. I absolutely love a chicken Alfredo pizza with fresh torn basil, spinach, and diced tomatoes. I usually use the light wheat dough found in the Artisan Breads book and substitute in 1/4c olive oil for some of the water. A-MAZING!

  2. Our most popular “house pizza” is made on the BBQ. Lightly toast one side of pizza dough, flip and top with slices of grilled chicken (seasoned w/your favorite grilling salt/spice combo, sliced Kalamata olives, caramelized onions and Fontina cheese. I don’t remember where we found the recipe, but we can’t make it fast enough for our friends.

    I have heard a lot of great comments lately regarding baking on a steel. I would love to try it.

  3. My husband is dairy-free. No cheese on his pizza. Not even a crumb of parmesan or he’s sick for days. We’ve created our own dairy-free toppings which create flavors and textures that have our friends stunned when they realize there’s no cheese on their pizza (which we have to point out to them while they’re helping themselves to another slice). The Davies Special: a light base of marinara (we strain the organic jarred marinara from Trader Joe’s while prepping the other ingredients),
    WELL-caramelized onions (adds the mouth-feel of melted cheese), medium-grilled red peppers, pre-cooked boiled kale, squeezed dry and cut into little chunks of slightly chewy veggie goodness, chopped artichoke hearts (the canned kind from Trader Joe’s that isn’t marinated, just lightly brined), sliced kalamata olives. Sauce first, all the toppings next so they don’t burn, onions on top to protect the underlayer. “O.M.G results” using your olive oil pizza dough recipe (I use only a tsp of sugar per 4-batch recipe). BTW, people don’t think they’re eating cheese, it’s a different experience, but it’s so yummy that they forget to miss it.

  4. I remember making pizza in a local shop in high school. The smell of pizza in the oven has always been a trip down memory lane.

    Making pizza with my children using your dough is so much fun. I would love to try different variations from your book.

  5. I used to make my own pizza crust but gave it up as too much work years ago. Now that I’ve found your book and website, I am going to start making my own again!

  6. Fresh blistered tomatoes, a little olive oil, paper thin sweet onions and sliced mushrooms. <3 Be still, my heart.

  7. My favorite pizza…. it’s gotta be a simple thin crust layered with garden fresh tomatoes, torn basil and fresh thin sliced buffalo mozzarella. Add a drizzle of olive oil. This pizza is only really possible in the heart of summertime with a thriving garden.

  8. I had this great pizza with prosciutto, figs, honey, and goat cheese at a pizza place in Brooklyn. So delicious!

  9. My all time favorite pizza is mascarpone cheese, smoked salmon, capers, and green onions, with cracked black pepper. It’s heavenly.

      1. Doug, hot-smoked or cold-smoked salmon? I’m guessing you add it and the pepper after baking off the crust with the mascarpone, capers, and green onion?

  10. I would love to try the recipe’s in the cookbook, I use veggie cheese to make my own pizza. My favorite is ham and pineapple!

    I make my own pizza because of allergies

  11. What a great contest! My son makes a wicked Mexican Vegetarian Pizza using the olive oil dough and topped with: re-fried beans, dices onion, habanero tabasco sauce, seitan strips, corn, fresh grated mozerella and cheddar cheese, cracked black pepper, and topped with cold and creamy guacamole when served. Did I mention he’s only five? (But in all honesty, I make the guacamole.) ;-D Good luck everyone. Thanks Jeff and Zoe!

  12. Homemade pizza is my favorite, especially with homemade pesto, olives, mushrooms and fresh mozzarella!

  13. Pizza is my favorite food, and now the pizza you have taught me to make is my favorite pizza. Just a Margherita. Yum!

  14. Those pizzas look really nice, coming from France it does look like the one we have here. I also like the NY style pizza with the folding crust! 2 different Style that are amazing! I usually use cream as a base and I add diced ham, oignons, cheese, oregano and rosemary! The best pizza ever!

      1. Morning Jeff!
        I must have really shown my disappointment when I did not win your baking steel contest… My wonderful (adult) kids gave me one for Mother’s day. They are reaping the benefits at Sunday lunch with how awesome my bread is turning out! I want to explore using it more, do you have any links to some good info on them?

  15. I just wanted to mention that I have been using the baking steel for over 2 years. I first saw it on kick starter and got one of the early models. No stone can even compare to it. My biggest problem is deciding whether to put it on the bottom on bake or the top on broil. So far my best results have been on the bottom at 500° or maximum oven temperature. For some reason logic would tell me that placing it on the top rack on broil should make it as hot as it could possibly get. But for some unknown reason I get better results on the bottom of the oven. I get a beautiful black speckling underneath from the baking steel. I am convinced there is no better way to cook a pizza at home in a conventional oven. Once you start using it you will never go back to a stone.

    1. I just got one as a gift from my adult kids for mothers day Jeff. Do you have any sites you would suggest for learning more how to bake bread etc with it? I have used it several times and LOVE the results but feel quite “insecure” trying to figure out the bst ways to use it!

      1. I don’t think the basic method for baking is any different than our instructions in any of our books or in this post, no need for modifications from that. I usually put my baking stone (or cast iron) near the center of the oven, though you can adjust the browning by manipulating that: bottom crust gets browner when you place on the bottom shelf, top crust gets browner when you place near the top of the oven.

      2. I don’t think there are any “special Links” to baking with the steel. It is just a different (IMO superior) surface to make your hearth. It retains more heat and seems to get the oven hotter that a stone. Any recipe will do. I have to admit I started baking bread after reading “The Bread Baker’s Apprentice: Mastering the Art of Extraordinary Bread by Peter Reinhart”. After trying that I was intrigued by Jeff and Zoe’s concept of 5 minutes a day bread and storing dough for up to two weeks. For me I had to have a better understanding of traditional methods before I could move on to the no knead method. I am happy to say I have all their books and rarely use anything else. I strongly recommend their original book “The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day” and once you get that down you will have the basic concept down.

      3. Wow, thank you for the kind words. A baker always is pleased to be compared favorably to Peter R!

      4. You deserve it and all the success you have gotten. Now I need a 5 minute bagel recipe!

      5. Thanks for the encouragement! I agree… a 5 min bagel YUM! Get right on that Jeff and Zoe!

  16. Hi

    I have the artisan pizza in 5 minutes book and i’d like to try some recipes, but they are too large. I’d like to make 1/4 of the recipe, how can I do that? Only divide by 4, including yeast ?

    Thanks in advance,

    1. Exactly! But you’ll lose the advantage of storing the dough… Could always just delay baking a couple days.

      1. Or freeze up the rest of the dough in your portion preference size! Once you make one, you will add it to your menu rotation!

  17. Baking Steel now have a sheet that is thicker …. And more expensive. Do you think there is any advantage to have the half inch thick over the quarter inch thick sheet ?? Did you have any moment you though a thicker one would be better ?

    I am new at all this started with the master recipe… My god, the trips to the baker’s place will be a lot less frequent with fresh bread made at home !!

    Thanks for your input about the baking steel !

    1. We’ve only tested withe the original, and it worked great. In general, thicker is better with ceramic materials, but I bet it doesn’t matter with steel.

  18. Wondering if you use baking steel to bake your loaves of bread or is the steel just recommended for pizza & flat breads?

    1. When you use a loaf pan, the use of a steel (or baking stone) is less important. Some people, using some ovens, find that the steel or stone helps even out the hot and cold spots in ovens, especially cheaper ones. But in general, you don’t need it and it certainly shortens the preheat time, which is very nice in the warm seasons.

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