The Napoli Outdoor Oven has become one of the most popular home pizza ovens, leading the charge for home pizza cooking. Our Napoli Pizza Oven review is here to show you how it compares to the competition.
Our love for pizza is nothing new. Everyone has their favorite topping, style, and way of making it. This passion for one of the world’s best foods has seen thousands of us starting making our own homemade versions, and with that has come a surge in popularity for home pizza ovens.
At the forefront of the revolution is the Napoli Outdoor Pizza Oven. And it’s for good reason. Put simply, this is the best outdoor pizza oven out there today.
It might not have the daunting build of a wood-fired traditional oven, but what it offers at a fraction of the cost is remarkable.
More importantly, the homemade pizza it produces is as good as it gets.
Let’s take a closer look.
Straight out of the box, this is a sleek-looking oven.
With a black material build and letter box shape, this thing looks almost minimalist in design. Pizza cooking is a quick and simple form of cooking, so we wouldn’t have it any other way.
Inside the oven, the Napoli boasts a beautiful cordierite pizza stone. We love to see this included in a home oven. Cordierite is far more durable than ceramic, and is known for withstanding very high temperatures (source) without breaking. It does this all while retaining heat to cook the base of your pizza.
When bought on their own, cordierite stones can be expensive. To have one included with the Napoli Pizza Oven is a big win. Other ovens tend to include cheaper and less reliable materials, like ceramic, with the bulk of what you pay going towards the shell of the oven.
The Napoli’s compact size also makes it easily portable. This makes it easy to take out and put away at home, or even taking on the road with you to make the perfect partner for your portable RV grill or camp grill grate.
A lot of traditional and modern pizza ovens stubbornly only allow you to use one type of fuel. This is usually wood for older ovens, and either charcoal or gas on newer ones.
Napoli have decided “Why not all three?”. That gives you a lot more flexibility when cooking. Wood and charcoal is great for the purists, but if you’re struggling for time then it’s great to be able to fall back on propane.
The oven does only allow wood pellets, and not wood logs. In an ideal world, we’d have the latter but given the ovens’s more compact size Napoli has done well to include wood pellets.
Wood pellets also come in different types and aromas, so while they don’t burn hot or as purely as logs, you can still squeeze some beautiful, woody flavors out of them to improve the flavors of your pizza. Check out our guide to the best wood for pizza ovens to find out more.
Annoyingly, the gas option for the Napoli isn’t included and you will have to buy the propane attachment separately.
Performance & pizza quality
Understandably, people might have reservations about whether the taste of the pizzas from this oven can match that of traditional ovens.
The answer is, it comes pretty darn close.
This use of cordierite comes to the fore when examining the power performance of the Napoli. Unlike other types of stone material, cordierite is built to stand up to extremely high temperatures, and can cope with heat up to about 880°F. So the oven is well built to stand up to exposures to these heat levels.
The brand claims that the oven can reach around 930°F, although in our tests we could only get it to about 850°F. This is still good however, and definitely up to the task of high temperature pizza cooking.
The oven’s durable build helps it maintain good cooking temperatures consistently. Cooking at about 450°F for pizza, we didn’t observe any significant temperature fluctuations. A lot of ovens or grills are let down by poor temperature retention due to poor material build, so I”m pleased to say that this doesn’t suffer anything like this.
The wood pellet pizza we cooked in our tests came out with a good, chewy base, with a nice char along its rim.
When we tested with charcoal, we didn’t see as much of a char but was nicely cooked otherwise. It did have a richer, smoky flavor. This might not be for everyone, but for people who love coal-cooked pizza, this is definitely a big plus.
The oven’s performance with propane was disappointing. We could taste the fuel in our pizza, and the overall quality wasn’t too dissimilar to a standard kitchen oven. It was very quick to heat up however, far quicker than either wood or charcoal. Does this mean it’s worth getting the propane attachment? Probably not. But if you’re out on the road or at a tailgate, and all other means have failed you, it’s always useful to have a backup option.
Cleaning & maintenance
Anyone who has a charcoal grill or smoker will testify to the pain of cleaning up after cooking it. As a result many outdoor cookers have developed cleaning trays to help speed up the process.
The Napoli is thankfully a breeze to clean. With the pizza only cooking on its stone, you just to wipe down the cordierite. A little bit of ash might form around the stone, but there’s no need to get into any crevices in the oven to clean it out.
How to use the Napoli
If using gas, install the propane burner and then slide the wood burning tray over the burner.
Turn on the burner and let the oven preheat.
Once the oven has reached target temperature, open the wood access door and add your choice of wood pellets. The propane burner will light the wood for added flavor.
Use the server to add your pizza, and cook for about 90 seconds.
The Napoli Outdoor is a lightweight and modern home pizza oven that does a great job at recreating traditional wood-fired pizza for newcomers and pros alike.
It looks amazing, retains heat well, and can reach high temperatures.Napoli have produced a pizza oven that finally makes authentic home pizza cooking accessible to newcomers.
While undoubtedly of high quality, there is a steep learning curve to using it and the lack of a built-in temperature gauge can make things tricky too.
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Last update on 2020-11-10 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API