Ciao, parlor life.

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Like a lot of people, over the past year and a half I got really good at homemade pizza. I have perfected my dough, my sauce, and my topping and cheese ratios. I have gotten better at forming my crusts and knowing when the pies are done. 

Which only meant one thing. The last thing to improve was my cooking method. 

RoccBox
Credit: Courtesy Gozney

Why it's time to buy a portable pizza oven

I've been using either my home oven or a stovetop pizza maker to cook my pies, with reasonable success. But we all know that the difference between a great home pizza and one that truly rivals one from a pizza parlor is getting that high heat, preferably with some wood involved.

If you have a loved one who has gone down this pizza rabbit hole and is ready for an upgrade, you might be thinking that a pizza oven would be the ideal gift this holiday season. Or if you are that pizzaiolo, you might be considering an investment in your new hobby. But with the proliferation of outdoor home pizza ovens comes the dilemma. These are expensive pieces of gear, so how do you know which one is worth the investment?

RoccBox
Credit: Courtesy Amazon

My choice: Gozney's Roccbox Portable Outdoor Pizza Oven

I am here to say that I am a fan of the Roccbox Portable Outdoor Pizza Oven from Gozney. This dual-fuel oven can use propane or wood, for maximum flexibility. The "rolling heat" function really gives you that consistent high heat that you get in pro ovens, while the silicone exterior both insulates the heat and helps make it a safer unit, so it is family friendly. The unit gets to about 950 degrees in between 20-30 minutes. Which means a thin-crust pizza cooks in about 90 seconds, just like in a pro shop! The detachable fuel boxes and retractable legs, as well as the shoulder strap on the cover make it portable enough to take with you on a road trip despite its sturdy construction. Do make sure you use it outdoors, though! 

Rocc Box
Credit: Courtesy Amazon

Roccbox Pizza Oven features I love

I love that the built-in thermometer lets me know exactly when my oven is at the ideal temp for my pizzas, and maintains the heat for me to knock out pie after pie without needing to wait for it to come back to temp. The baking stone base gives me the crispy browned bottom that I love, and the high heat provides that spotting and bit of welcome char on the edges. Beyond pizza, it is also great for other flatbreads like pita and naan. It comes with a perfectly sized pizza peel that is designed to move your pies in and out with aplomb.

Finally, I love the woodburning attachment for when I want that extra-special flavor. It takes regular wood, lump charcoal or briquettes for maximum fuel flexibility, no special products required. Bonus? You can get it in elegant gray or in a gorgeous olive green! If it is time to make the leap to an outdoor pizza oven, any cook will love the Roccbox.

To buy: Roccbox Portable Outdoor Pizza Oven ($499), amazon.com