Nothing beats the crispy, smoky flavor of a homemade pizza. Unfortunately, only some have the space or budget for a massive outdoor oven.
Look no further than the Ooni Karu oven–you can get your best pizzas out of it by following a few tips!
Keep reading to find all the information you need regarding using this epic oven correctly. From set up to clean up, we have it all!
How should you Set Up Your Ooni Karu Pizza Oven?
Setting up the oven is an exciting experience that gives you the feeling of having your beloved in your home!
- First, unbox your shiny new oven and take a moment to admire its sleek design—no need to stress about complicated assembly or special tools. The oven comes with everything you need to get started. All you need is the included Allen key and screwdriver, and you’re ready to go.
- Assemble the legs and attach the chimney.
- Next, secure the thermometer to the base of the oven. After that, align the oven door and screw it in place. You’ll feel satisfied as you tighten the screws and see the door attach to the oven.
- Then, push the first stone to the back and the second one into the oven, creating the perfect surface for your pizza.
- Finally, insert the fuel basket into the back and get ready to fire up your new oven.
One of the most incredible things about the Ooni Karu pizza oven is its ability to use multiple fuel options. It gives you the flexibility to cook outdoors in any situation. Whether you want wood, charcoal, or gas, the Ooni Karu has you covered!
Set up for wood/charcoal as a fuel option.
You can add wood or charcoal fuel to your Ooni Karu to burn and create the perfect cooking environment for your pizzas. To set up the fuel:
Add wood or charcoal to the fuel basket and put it in the oven. Light the wood/ charcoal using a blowtorch.
Remove the chimney cap and leave the door on while cooking. It’ll help to draw in the fresh air and keep the fire burning hot and steady, creating the perfect conditions for your wood-fired or charcoal-cooked pizzas.
The wood-fired option is perfect for those who love cooking with wood’s authentic, smoky flavor. On the other hand, charcoal is an excellent option for those who want to cook quickly and with minimal fuss.
Set up for gas as a fuel option.
For those who prefer the convenience of gas, the Ooni Karu gas burner attachment is the perfect solution. Remove the chimney and door from the oven to get started, as these aren’t necessary when using gas. You can then add the chimney cap to the oven body to create a seal.
You’ll need to order the Ooni Gas Burner attachment to use gas as your fuel, as it doesn’t come with the oven. Once you have the attachment, it’s easy to install.
- Take off the oven’s rear ventilation cover.
- Take out the burner, and install the gas burner.
- Ensure that the gas burner is positioned so that the logo is pointing up.
- Push in and gradually spin the control knob anticlockwise until you hear a click and the gas burner lights.
- For 5 seconds, keep pressing and holding the handle, then let go.
To ensure that your pizza cooks uniformly, you can use the control knob on your gas burner to adjust the flame production.
How should you Preheat the Ooni Karu Pizza Oven?
Preheating the pizza oven is the most crucial part of a pizza-making adventure–to make it successful.
To preheat the Ooni Karu pizza oven, add your fuel of choice – wood, charcoal, or gas. If using wood or charcoal, use a kindling or a fire starter to get the fire going, and let it burn for at least 15-20 minutes until the stone temperature has reached 950°F (500°C).
To check the pizza stone temperature, use an accurate pizza oven thermometer. After getting a pizza oven, the must-have tool is an infrared pizza oven thermometer.
If using gas, turn on the gas burner and adjust the flame output using the control knob until the temperature inside the oven reaches the desired level.
How to Cook Pizza Using the Ooni Karu?
Making your favorite pizza in the Ooni Karu oven is an exciting experience! But it does take quite a lot of practice to get it right. Use the following steps for cooking delicious pizza in the Ooni Karu pizza oven:
- Roll out your room-temperature pizza dough on a floured surface using a rolling pin. Make sure to roll it out thin enough to ensure it cooks evenly.
- Once the dough is rolled out, transfer it to a floured pizza peel.
- Add your desired amount of pizza sauce to the dough and spread it out using a spoon or ladle.
- Sprinkle shredded cheese (preferably mozzarella) over the sauce.
- Add your preferred toppings, but make sure not to overload the pizza, as this can affect how evenly it cooks.
- Once you’ve added your toppings, slide the pizza onto the preheated pizza stone in the Ooni Karu oven using the peel.
- Cook the pizza for about 60-90 seconds. Rotate it using the pizza peel to ensure even cooking.
- Once the pizza is cooked to your desired level of doneness, use the pizza peel to remove it from the oven and transfer it to a cutting board.
- Use a pizza cutter to slice the pizza and serve it hot.
- Enjoy your delicious homemade pizza!
It’s important to note that the cooking time for your pizza may vary depending on the thickness of your dough and the toppings.
Bonus Tips and Tricks to Use Ooni Karu the Right Way
There are countless ways to improve your cooking game to get the most out of your Ooni Karu. We care about our beloved audience. Therefore, we have curated a list of tips and tricks for you.
Read on to find out how you can use your Ooni Karu pizza oven to its full potential!
Season your Ooni Karu Pizza Oven
To prepare your Ooni Karu oven for its first use, you must season it. This involves running the oven at its highest temperature for at least 30 minutes, allowing it to cool, and then wiping the inside with dry paper towels.
By doing so, any oils or coatings that may be left over from the manufacturing process will be burned off. It ensures that your oven is ready to use for cooking.
This simple yet essential step is crucial to getting the best results from your Ooni Karu and will help you achieve the perfect cooking environment for all your favorite recipes.
Pick your fuel type.
We recommend using a mixture of charcoal and wood to enhance your cooking experience. This tip is beneficial if you’re a beginner, as cooking with charcoal and wood is easier. To do this, layer some charcoal in the fuel basket and add a few wood chunks.
Having a charcoal base will help you achieve consistent temperature. Moreover, the wood will add a smoky flavor to your pizza and add flames!
Preheat your oven correctly.
Preheating the oven is the key to cooking great pizza in the Ooni Karu. Make sure the oven is up to temperature before you start cooking. This will help you cook your pizza evenly and promptly.
Don’t overfill your fuel basket.
We know that it’s tempting to fill up your fuel basket to the top. However, it can interrupt the airflow, causing a lot of smoke and burning your pizza.
An easier way is to add wood or charcoal, little by little. You can do this by opening the hatch at the back of the oven and adding chunks of wood to keep the flame going.
Place your Ooni Karu oven on a flat surface in the wind’s direction.
When placing your Ooni Karu pizza oven, it is recommended to place it on a stable, heat-resistant surface that is level and flat. Additionally, you should place the oven in a location that is sheltered from the wind, as the wind can affect the temperature and cooking performance of the oven.
Last comes the direction of placement–you should place the Ooni Karu pizza oven in the direction of the prevailing wind in your area. For example, if the wind is blowing from east to west, your pizza oven rear should be in the west and face east. This way, the airflow will help fire instead of resisting it.
If you’re unsure about the direction of the prevailing wind in your area, you can check with your local weather service or observe the direction of the wind during different times of the day.
Use high-quality ingredients
The Ooni Karu pizza oven cooks pizza quickly at high temperatures, so it’s important to use high-quality ingredients to withstand the heat. Choose fresh toppings, and make sure your dough is appropriately rested and proofed.
Use a pizza peel
A pizza peel is essential for cooking pizza in the Ooni Karu. It allows you to slide your pizza onto the pizza stone without burning your hands or ruining your pizza.
Rotate your pizza
To ensure that your pizza cooks evenly, be vigilant about rotating it every 20-30 seconds.
You can use a pizza peel to rotate your pizza 180 degrees each time and check the bottom of the crust for doneness.
Watch the temperature
The Ooni Karu pizza oven can get very hot, so it’s vital to oversee the temperature. The oven comes with an attached thermometer, but it does not measure the temperature of the pizza stone inside the oven.
We recommend using an infrared thermometer to monitor the temperature inside the oven and adjust the heat as needed to ensure that your pizza cooks evenly. If you find the pizza stone temperature mounting high, low the flame. Otherwise, it’ll give you pizzas burnt bottom.
Preheat your pizza oven before launching every pizza.
Preheating your Ooni pizza oven before launching every pizza is important for several reasons:
- Preheating your Ooni pizza oven is essential for achieving consistent cooking results, for it ensures that the cooking surface is evenly heated. Launching a pizza onto a cold or insufficiently heated oven may result in an unevenly cooked pizza, with some parts being undercooked and others overcooked.
- Preheating your Ooni pizza oven can significantly reduce the cooking time required for each pizza. A properly preheated oven will allow the pizza to cook faster, resulting in a shorter cooking time.
- The preheating process allows the oven to reach its optimal cooking temperature, which helps your pizza achieve the perfect crust, texture, and flavor.
- Preheating your Ooni pizza oven can also prevent your pizza from sticking to the cooking surface. A properly preheated oven will create a dry, non-stick surface allowing your pizza to slide easily into and out of the oven.
In short, preheating your Ooni pizza oven before launching every pizza is essential for achieving consistent, high-quality results in a short time.
Experiment with different toppings
The beauty of cooking pizza in the Ooni Karu is that you can experiment with different toppings and flavor combinations. Try different sauces, cheeses, and toppings to find your perfect pizza.
Use a pizza oven brush.
The Ooni pizza oven brush is a handy 2-in-1 tool. It’s designed to help you clean your oven with ease and efficiency. This tool features both bristles and a scraper, making it perfect for removing excess flour, food debris, and ash from your pizza stone baking board.
The bristles can be used to quickly brush off any excess flour or food particles, while the scraper can be flipped over to remove any fallen food from the oven floor.
Give your Chimney a Wiggle
When using the chimney of your Ooni Karu pizza oven, it’s essential to keep in mind that soot and debris can build up inside over time. To prevent this buildup from affecting the performance of your oven, it’s recommended to perform a “Chimney Toggle Wiggle” after every few wood-fired cooks.
This involves giving the vent toggle a gentle wiggle to dislodge any buildup and ensure that there is a clear air passageway for your fire. By doing so, you can maintain optimal airflow within the oven, which will help to ensure consistent cooking temperatures and improve the overall performance of your Ooni Karu.
How should you Clean up your Ooni Karu?
The beauty of the Ooni Karu is that it’s self-cleaning, thanks to its incredibly high temperatures. The intense heat generated during cooking burns off any remaining food residue, leaving your oven clean.
After using the oven, you should allow it to cool completely before attempting to clean it. Once cooled, you can easily remove any burnt material by using the removable ashtray.
We recommend that you empty it regularly to ensure proper airflow. Additionally, you can use a damp paper towel to clean the door window.
With these tips and tricks, you’ll be cooking up delicious pizzas in your Ooni Karu in no time!
Is it okay to use wood pellets in Ooni Karu?
The answer is no.
Ooni Karu is designed to be used with gas, hardwood kindling, and lump wood charcoal. It’s not compatible with wood pellets.
Attempting to use pellets as fuel in the Ooni Karu can prevent the oven from reaching its optimal temperature. This can ultimately impact the quality of your cooking.
Therefore, it’s best to stick with the recommended fuel types for the Ooni Karu to ensure the best possible cooking experience.
How should I extinguish my Ooni Karu pizza oven?
When it comes to extinguishing your Ooni Karu pizza oven, it’s crucial to allow it to burn through any remaining solid fuels before attempting to put it out.
Once the cooking process is complete, let the oven burn off any remaining fuel and allow it to cool naturally.
The cooling time can vary as it depends on the ambient temperature. Typically, it takes around 60 minutes to cool down.
We appreciate your time and hope that you found the article helpful. Now that you know all the secrets of using the Ooni Karu pizza oven, it’s only fair to test it out yourself.
So why settle for a boring, mediocre pie when you can have Ooni Karu’s mouthwatering pizza in your own backyard?
Get ready to take your outdoor cooking to new heights with the Ooni Karu oven!
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