Just about every pizza enthusiast I've met eventually confesses their dream of owning a wood-fired oven. While some pizza fans research this daunting task in detail and even picture where they’d like to put their oven, others only know that they run on wood and they look awesome. Purists argue that nothing can match the heat, speed, and flavor of a wood-fired oven – and by most pizza experts’ standards, wood-fired ovens are the only way to cook a truly authentic Naples-style pizza.
While wood-fired ovens are certainly an amazing and efficient way to cook, today we’re announcing the arrival of a game-changing accessory for your charcoal grill. It’s called the PizzaQue Pizza Kit for Kettle Grills, and it might just be the closest thing out there to a wood-fired oven. The kit was created to take your kettle-style grill and transform it into a piping hot pizza-producing machine. The PizzaQue Pizza Kit for Kettle Grills can be run on charcoal alone or with added wood chunks if you’d like to turn up the heat and bake even faster. It fits both 18” and 22.2” diameter Weber® and Master Forge® grills. Let’s take a look at what’s included in the kit, and how it works.
What’s in the Box?
The PizzaQue Pizza Kit for Kettle Grills consists of three main parts: the kettle insert, a charcoal “fence”, and a 15” pizza stone. Let’s take a closer look at the parts.
The kettle insert is the main component of the kit. It’s assembled from a few pieces of steel and some included nuts and bolts. The insert is essentially a ring with an opening at the front to slide pizzas in and out of your grill. We've mounted a simple dial thermometer to the right of the insert opening to help gauge what temperature you’re cooking at.
While it’s a really simple part of the kit, the charcoal fence plays an important role in cooking the perfect pizza. Four pieces of wire mesh are connected together to form a box which holds the charcoal right where you need it: elevated and out from underneath the pizza stone. The fence is placed on the smaller of the two grill grates inside your kettle grill. Lit charcoal is placed in a “U” shape just outside the fence at the back of the grill.
Lastly, we have the pizza stone… you know what this is for! The pizza stone is the fiery deck on which you bake a pizza. When used in combination with the charcoal fence, this stone is set at the perfect height to make a crispy, delicious, wood-fired pizza. With a diameter of 15 inches, there’s plenty of room for a nice-sized pie.
Note: As you unbox your PizzaQue Pizza Kit for Kettle Grills, be sure to check out our YouTube video on how to assemble it.
How to Use the Kit
After assembly, it’s time to learn how to operate the kit. After you've installed the oven insert, you’ll notice a few different ways to go about preheating that are referenced in the included manual. After selecting the preheat method that best suits you, go ahead and fire up the coals. Once the coals are in place, put the lid of your grill on top of the kettle insert, and you’ll be ready to cook in about 5 to 10 minutes. Like most other pizza ovens, you’ll transfer your freshly-made pizza onto the hot stone using a pizza peel. With this kit we’ve included a pizza peel so you’re ready to cook right out of the box (assuming you have ingredients, of course!). After placing your pizza on the hot stone, you’ll need to rotate it using the peel at least 2 but up to 3 times so that it cooks evenly.
Playing with Fire
Controlling a live fire is a little different that adjusting a propane burner, so based on your experience level, your first few pizzas will give you some insight on how to steadily control the oven’s temperature. I recommend using the oven without wood chunks the first few times to get acquainted with how the whole process works. Once you’ve got the process down with charcoal, add some wood chunks to turn up the heat and decrease cooking time. Adding a few wood chunks on top of the lit coals takes the fire from hot to a blazing, pizza-blistering inferno. While we say that the kit allows you to cook a pizza in 3-5 minutes at around 900°F, using wood chunks pizza times can often shrink down to as fast as 2 minutes per pie at temperatures of over 1000°F! Adding wood chunks while you cook will also impart your pizza with a wonderful smoky, wood-fired flavor.
If you’re on a quest for wood-fired pizza from the comfort of your own backyard, the PizzaQue Pizza Kit for Kettle Grills is the perfect purchase to make this dream come true.