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Types of Pizza Ovens

Types of Pizza Ovens

Last updated on 4/20/2021

If you're starting a pizzeria, the most important investment you'll make is your pizza oven. While individual models vary, there are five types of commercial pizza ovens: brick, conveyor, deck, convention, and countertop. These five types categorize models of varying sizes and capabilities. Understanding how the different types of pizza ovens operate, their heating method, as well as their average cost, production volume, and dimensions helps you narrow your search.

Shop All Commercial Pizza Ovens

Click any of the sections below to learn about the different pizza oven types:
  1. Brick Pizza Oven
  2. Conveyor Pizza Oven
  3. Pizza Deck Oven
  4. Convection Pizza Oven
  5. Countertop Pizza Oven
  6. Pizza Oven Comparison Charts

What Is the Best Commercial Pizza Oven?

Foodservice professionals agree brick ovens are the best commercial pizza oven model. While it’s natural to want the best commercial pizza oven, you also need to consider your pizza order volume, budget, kitchen size, and the types of pizza you want to make. Use our guide to discover the best commercial pizza oven for your business. Be sure to check out our commercial pizza oven reviews as well!

Different Types of Pizza Ovens

variety of pizzas on plates and in pizza boxes

The different types of pizza ovens are distinguished by three main factors: how they operate, how much space they require, and how much they cost. We break down everything you need to know about each of the five pizza oven types so you can make an informed decision about the benefits and challenges of investing in each.

1. Brick Pizza Oven

Designed to cook pizzas slowly and evenly, brick pizza ovens are heated by burning wood and imbue pizzas with smoky flavors. The bricks take a long time to heat, but once they’re hot, brick pizza ovens maintain high temperatures.

You can design your brick pizza oven as an outdoor pizza oven. Outdoor pizza ovens offer the same wood-burning, artisan flavors as indoor models but usually take up less space. They’re perfect for pizzerias with attractive patio spaces and they elevate the menu of any wine garden.

Brick Pizza Oven Fast Facts

  • Brick Pizza Oven Pizzas Per Hour – Approximately 80
  • Brick Pizza Oven Cook Time – 2-5 Minutes
  • Brick Pizza Oven Heating Method – Convection, Reflection, and Conduction Heat
  • Brick Pizza Oven Preheat Time – 45-60 Minutes
  • Brick Pizza Oven Cost – Custom made, so cost varies by contractor, size, and materials.
  • The Best Types of Pizza to Cook in a Brick Pizza Oven – California-Style, New York, Neapolitan, Chicago, and Sicilian

Brick Pizza Oven Production Volume

Most brick pizza ovens can hold 10-12 pizzas at a time and can fully cook a pizza in less than five minutes. You can avoid heat recovery time by maintaining your brick oven’s fire. Most brick pizza ovens only have one cooking platform which limits their cooking space. They’re a reliable pizza oven for medium-sized operations, but high-volume pizzerias would do well to choose a conveyor oven.

Brick Pizza Oven Dimensions

Most brick pizza oven dimensions range from 150 cubic ft to 400 cubic ft., but they’re custom-designed to fit each location. Brick pizza ovens often reach from floor to ceiling and sit atop bases as large as 30 square feet. Restaurants use brick ovens for both function and presentation. A brick pizza oven serves as a centerpiece attraction and is usually built where customers can watch and appreciate it in action.

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2. Conveyor Pizza Oven

A conveyor oven churns out pizzas as fast as you can make them on a continuous cooking platform. Place the pizza on the conveyor belt, and the oven does the rest of the work by pulling it through at a set speed. Some models increase production capacity by stacking up to four conveyor ovens on top of each other. Conveyor ovens are the best option in settings where efficiency is the biggest priority, and you can purchase the gas or electric hookup style your business requires.

Conveyor Deck Pizza Oven Fast Facts

  • Conveyor Deck Pizza Oven Pizza Per Hour – 75-100 per deck
  • Conveyor Deck Pizza Oven Cook Time – 4-5 Minutes
  • Conveyor Deck Pizza Oven Heating Method – Convection or Radiant Heat
  • Conveyor Deck Pizza Oven Preheat Time – 10-15 Minutes
  • Conveyor Deck Pizza Oven Cost – $5,000-$30,000
  • The Best Types of Pizza to Cook in a Conveyor Deck Pizza Oven – New York and Neapolitan

Conveyor Deck Pizza Oven Production Volume

Each deck on a large conveyor oven produces approximately 100 pizzas an hour. Medium-sized conveyor deck ovens typically produce 75 pizzas per deck each hour. It takes conveyor deck ovens four to five minutes to cook a pizza. Because the pizzas are passing under or through the constant heating elements, there is no time lost for heat recovery.

Conveyor Deck Pizza Oven Dimensions

Conveyor deck pizza oven dimensions range from 100 cubic ft. to 180 cubic ft., and most are wide enough to fit two large pizzas side by side. Restaurants need a lot of floor space to house a conveyor oven and accommodate the extended conveyor belts at their entrance and exit. A single-stack conveyor oven requires up to 150 cubic feet (about half the volume of a storage unit), while triple-stack ovens often take over 330 cubic feet (about the volume of a storage unit) of floor space.

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3. Pizza Deck Oven

chef removing pizza from avantco equipment triple deck pizza oven

Because their hot stone decks directly heat the pizza crust, cooking the dough completely without charring the toppings, pizza deck ovens are ideal for cooking pizza pies. Deck ovens also employ radiant heat, which sends infrared heat waves to warm the pizza throughout, preventing burned crusts and unmelted cheese.

Deck ovens are a great long-term investment because they last many years, even decades, and hold their resale value. Maintaining a pizza deck oven is easy, just scrub burn marks on the decks and wipe down the outside. Since they have no moving parts, pizza deck ovens rarely require professional repairs.

Pizza Deck Oven Fast Facts

  • Pizza Deck Oven Pizza Per Hour – Approximately 50 pizzas per deck
  • Pizza Deck Oven Cook Time – 6-8 Minutes
  • Pizza Deck Oven Heating Method – Conduction and Radiant Heat
  • Pizza Deck Oven Preheat Time – Approximately 60 Minutes
  • Pizza Deck Oven Cost – $5,000-$30,000
  • The Best Types of Pizza to Cook in a Pizza Deck Oven – New York, Chicago, Sicilian, and Neapolitan

Pizza Deck Oven Production Volume

On average, each pizza deck holds four to six pizzas and produces 50 pies an hour. Baking times range between six and eight minutes. Pizza deck ovens are not a hands-off cooking method. Your staff will need to monitor the pizzas while they cook and move them around, so you may lose time to heat recovery and run out of space. Some models overcome the inherent lack of cooking space by offering multiple stacked decks. Pizza deck ovens can have anywhere from one to six decks.

Pizza Deck Oven Dimensions

Pizza deck oven dimensions range from 100 to 180 cubic feet. They’re ideal for medium-sized pizzerias, since a high-capacity, four-deck oven requires approximately 160 cubic feet of space. While their overall size rivals conveyor ovens, pizza deck ovens have stacked designs that require more vertical space than horizontal.

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4. Convection Pizza Oven

Commercial pizza convection ovens circulate hot air, cooking every side of the pizza at once. Since the heat is coming from the circulating air, convection pizza ovens typically brown cheese toppings before they finish cooking the pizza dough. Since they are the least expensive to purchase and maintain, non-pizzerias do well to save money with commercial pizza ovens. By using a pizza stone in a conviction oven, one can even simulate the results of a brick pizza oven. By cleaning the inside daily and the intake fan weekly, you can cut down on replacement or repair costs.

Convection Pizza Oven Fast Facts

  • Convection Pizza Oven Pizza Per Hour – Approximately 40 pizzas per chamber
  • Convection Pizza Oven Cook Time – 5-6 Minutes
  • Convection Pizza Oven Heating Method – Convection Heat
  • Convection Pizza Oven Preheat Time – 15-20 Minutes
  • Convection Pizza Oven Cost – $1,000-$10,000
  • The Best Types of Pizza to Cook in a Convection Pizza Oven – New York and Neapolitan

Convection Pizza Oven Production Volume

On average, convection pizza ovens produce 40 pizzas per chamber each hour. Most models have two to five racks per chamber and can fit one or two 16" pizzas on each rack. It usually takes a convection oven five to six minutes to cook one pizza. Cook times vary depending on the temperature and the number of pizzas in the oven. You will lose some heat when you open the door to remove your pizzas, but most convection ovens counter this effect and minimize heat recovery time. Commercial convection ovens are best suited to restaurants that want pizza as a menu option but aren’t pizza-focused.

Convection Pizza Oven Dimensions

Most convection pizza ovens require 15 to 60 cubic feet, making them the ideal choice for restaurants with limited space. Some convection pizza ovens have a narrow width and an elevated height to reserve precious floor space for other pizza shop equipment and storage.

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5. Countertop Pizza Oven

chef removing pizza from avantco equipment countertop pizza oven with pizza boxes in background

You can save money and space by purchasing a countertop version of convection, conveyor, and deck ovens. While the number of pizzas a countertop pizza oven makes per hour varies widely by oven type, they all produce fewer pizzas than their full-sized counterparts. Most countertop pizza ovens are electric, so you can install them anywhere there is an electrical hookup or outlet.

Not only do countertop pizza ovens save floor space, but you can also stack them on top of each other or other pieces of equipment to save valuable countertop space as well. They are the ideal choice of equipment for food trucks and concession stands.

  • Types of Countertop Pizza Ovens – Convection, Conveyor, and Deck
  • Countertop Pizza Oven Cook Times – Countertop pizza ovens yield compatible cook times to their full-sized versions.
  • Countertop Pizza Oven Preheat Time – Approximately 12 minutes but varies by oven style.
  • Countertop Pizza Oven Cost – $100-$11,000
  • The Best Types of Pizza to Cook in a Countertop Pizza Oven – New York, Neapolitan, Heating Frozen Pizza

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Comparison Chart of Pizza Oven Efficiencies

Oven TypePizzas Produced
/ Hour
SizeCostHeating MethodPreheat TimeCooking TimeOperator Skill Level
Convection40 / chamber15 ft3-60 ft3$1,000-$10,000Convection heat15-20 minutes5-6 minutesLow
Conveyor80 / belt150 ft3-300 ft3$5,000-$30,000Convection or radiant heat10-15 minutes4-5 minutesLow-Medium
Deck50 / deck100 ft3-180 ft3$5,000-$30,000Conduction and radiant heat60 minutes6-8 minutesMedium-High
Brick80 / deck150 ft3-400 ft3 or moreLargely varies by contractor, size, materials, and aesthetic designConvection, reflection, and conduction heat45-60 minutes2-5 minutesHigh

How to Make Different Types of Pizza: The Best Oven for Each

Oven TypePizza StyleTopping LevelCrust Thickness
ConvectionNew York and NeapolitanLight and Medium ToppingsThin and Medium Crusts
ConveyorNew York and NeapolitanLight and Medium ToppingsThin and Medium Crusts
DeckNew York, Neapolitan, Chicago, and SicilianLight and Heavy ToppingsAll Crusts
BrickCalifornia-Style, New York, Neapolitan, Chicago, and SicilianLight and Heavy ToppingsAll Crusts

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By taking your operational needs and financial requirements into consideration, you can find the best commercial pizza oven for your business. Whether you need a steady stream of pizzas or want to diversify your menu with a couple of pies, there is an ideal pizza maker for your needs. For more pizzeria essentials, check out our pizza box sizing guide.

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