How To Light A pizza Oven

Cooking in your microwave oven can get boring for a gourmet kind of person. You can switch things up and use a pizza oven instead. First, you’ll want to get the fire in the pizza oven going. It may sound tricky, but it’s not that hard. 

How to Light a Pizza Oven

Here’s how you do it: make a cone shape with some wood logs and start a fire. When the inside of the oven turns black and reaches 350-400°C, that’s when you can put food or pizza in it. 

As a beginner, you might feel confused about the different types of pizza ovens and wood choices. Last time, I discussed in complete detail cooking on stone slabs in my blog post. 

Today, I am going to share tips for lighting a pizza oven.  Let us make the learning process easier as well as fun. We’ve also given some tips we learned by lighting different pizza ovens and using different wood types for flavor choice. Read further to find out! 

How to light a pizza oven

Lighting a pizza oven is easy as long as which type of pizza oven you are working with. Let us start with the most-used and our personal favorite wood-fired pizza oven. 

Step-by-step Wood-fired pizza oven lighting guide: 

Wood-fired pizza ovens are the ones that require wood logs and some considerations. These are also called outdoor pizza ovens and are often placed in patios for outdoor kitchen experience. To get the taste of Italian pizza, we use this method and the results are always appetizing.

Here are the steps to light your wood-fired pizza oven:

How to light a pizza oven
  1. Keep both the door and the chimney vent of your pizza oven open. 
  2. Get small logs of wood like Oak, Beech, pine cones, or any kind of Kindling. 
  3. Arrange the logs by placing them on top of each other in a crisscross pattern, just like building a mini dome or playing Jenga. 
  4. Put some firelighters in the middle and use a match and light the fire up inside the pizza oven. 
  5. Keep adding accordingly i.e. whether you want to maintain temperature or increase it. Just add three medium-sized logs to increase the fire. 
  6. See if the pizza dome is black and the wood is white or greyish. 
  7. Keep adding logs to heat the floor evenly, by now we recommend you use tongs and wear heat-resistant gloves. If the pizza oven is cold, this will take an hour or more to get to the perfect temperature. 
  8. Bring an Infrared Thermometer and see if the pizza oven has reached 350-400°C temperature. 
  9. Locate the smoke control and close it off so that what stays trapped. Do this once you make sure the temperature is 350-400°C.
  10. Gradually, the flames will die down, use pizza peel to move the burned ashes or charcoal to the side of the oven. The center should be free for your pizza or food to be placed in. 
  11. That’s it, your pizza oven is lit and is ready to cook food or pizza. 

Step-by-step Gas pizza oven lighting guide:

If you’re not a pro at maintaining the fire in a wood-fired pizza oven, just use a Gas pizza oven. Just by turning the knob, you get to maintain or increase heat in a gas pizza oven. The lighting guide is simple: 

Step-by-step Gas pizza oven lighting guide
  1. Turn the knob to the maximum heat option to heat the gas pizza oven. 
  2. Leave it empty for 30 minutes.
  3. Get an infrared thermometer and check the temperature. Once it reaches 400°C, put the pizza or food inside a gas oven by using a pizza peel. 
  4. Turn the knob to low heat as soon as you put the pizza or the needed in.
  5. Keep in mind that you need to light it up to the temperature according to the food you’re cooking.  

Step-by-step Electric Pizza Oven Lighting Guide:

People who prefer simple cooking methods and eat for hunger’s sake can just get an electric pizza oven. It can be lighted by electricity and comes with a guide depending on the model you’re using.

Step-by-step Electric Pizza Oven Lighting Guide

We recommend this if you prefer user-friendly equipment and prefer staying away from the smoke and ashes of a Wood-fired pizza oven. 

Pizza Oven Lighting Tips

Let us help make sure you don’t burn pizza on your first try. Get the best flavor out of the pizza oven by using these tips: 

Using Pizza oven fire starters

If you use fire starters instead of firelighters, you’ll get less smoke and more heat. Organic fire starters are a popular choice as they are eco-friendly and free from harmful chemicals.

Using Pizza oven fire starters

We also recommend using natural materials like newspaper, cardboard, or wood shavings as fire starters. Place them under your logs of wood. They ignite quickly and help build a strong firebase for your pizza oven.

Best wood for pizza oven lighting

One thing professional chefs know is the type of wood and its importance to produce flavor. You can significantly impact the flavor of your pizza by using different types of wood. Hardwoods like Oak, Beech, or Hickory are excellent choices for wood-fired pizza ovens. They provide a pleasant smoky aroma that enhances the taste of your dishes. Avoid using softwoods like Pine, even though they are cheap, they may give unwanted flavors.

Choosing the Right Fuel

For gas and electric pizza ovens, ensure you have a steady supply of fuel to maintain the desired temperature throughout the cooking process.

Choosing the Right Fuel

People usually use these if the fire is hard to maintain but forget that propane or natural gas supply needs maintenance as well. 

Maintaining the Fire

For wood-fired ovens, you may need to add additional wood logs during the cooking process to maintain the desired temperature. In gas ovens, you can adjust the heat settings accordingly to achieve the best cooking results. Regardless of the pizza oven type, monitoring the temperature is important for ideal heat-up.

Managing temperature fluctuations 

Wood-fired ovens can experience temperature fluctuations, especially as the flames die down. To maintain a steady cooking temperature, move the burned ashes or charcoal to the side of the oven, allowing the center to be free for cooking. In gas and electric ovens, make slight adjustments to the heat settings to prevent extreme fluctuations. 


How do you light a pizza oven?

The process of lighting a pizza oven varies based on the type of oven. For a wood-fired oven, create a cone shape with wood logs, light a fire, and wait until the inside reaches 350-400°C before cooking.

How do you light a metal pizza oven?

Lighting a metal pizza oven is similar to lighting a wood-fired oven. Use wood logs or fire starters to ignite a fire and wait for the oven to reach the desired temperature before cooking.

How do you light a commercial pizza oven?

Commercial pizza ovens often come with a user manual. Follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for lighting and maintaining the oven.

How do you light a pizza oven with pellets?

To light a pizza oven with pellets, fill the pellet hopper with pellets and place a fire lighter on it. Put it in the oven and wait for a few minutes as the fire starts to light up. Keep adding pellets until the oven reaches the desired temperature for cooking.

How do you start a fire in a pizza oven?

Follow the above guide for the wood-fired pizza oven. 

Where do you put the fire in a pizza oven?

For wood-fired ovens, place the firewood in a cone shape or crisscross pattern, leaving space for air circulation. 

Final words 

Overall, cooking in a wood-fired pizza oven gives an old-school vibe with an Italian-style Pizza taste. The crunchy crust with melted steamy cheese is the hallmark of a pizza oven and that’s why it’s better than microwave traditional pizza. Lastly, the pizza oven can stay hot for more than 2 hours and allows you to warm other foods too. 

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