Pizza stones are not necessarily made of stone. They may be made out of ceramic or even salt. When discussing pizza stones, it’s more about their effectiveness rather than what the material is. After all, what people care about the most is the crispiness of their pizza’s crust and its overall taste.
What are pizza stones and how do they work?
A pizza stone is a baking stone specifically designed for cooking pizza. It functions like a cookie sheet, absorbing the dough’s extra moisture so that the crust will turn crispier. These types of baking stones are meant to emulate the experience of cooking pizza in a brick oven. Brick oven pizzas are considered to be the best-quality pizzas.
In contrast metal or glass, a stone surface is a less powerful heat conductor so the food does not burn quickly. It also holds heat more evenly and, when preheated, creates a light, fluffy pizza crust.
Does the size and shape matter?
The most commons shape of a pizza is round, but it’s not the only one out there. Pizza can be a rectangle, a square, or any shape you can think of! Yet, pizzas are typically round because pizza makers stretch the dough and toss it into the air in a circular motion, resulting in a circular shape.
Now, if the shape of a pizza rarely matters, what about the shape of the stone? The answer is yes, it does. It’s not a deal-breaker type of difference, but for pizza lovers, it could be the fine line that separates the great from the good.
Pizza stones are typically round and square. A round stone is the preferred shape because it allows every inch of the pizza to be heated. The targeted heat results in a better crust and decreases the likelihood of the pizza getting burned. The negatives of using a round stone are the difficulty of placing the pizza and the lack of flexibility when it comes to cooking other food.
The weaknesses of a round pizza stone are essentially the strengths of a square pizza stone. You can cook other food on it, and it’s easy to fit a rectangular-shaped pizza onto it. Since it has a larger surface area than a round stone, it retains more heat, resulting in a crispier crust, which some people like.
If the shape matters, what about the size? You bet it does! Longer and wider pizza stones, such as a square pizza stone, retain heat and cook pizza faster. A thicker stone takes a while to heat, but when it does, it cooks the pizza much faster than a thinner stone would.
The Verdict: Which Pizza Stone Shape Should You Use?
While the shape does make a difference, in the end, it’s pretty negligible. What’s more, both shapes offer something that the other doesn’t. If you’re a dedicated pizza lover, then maybe you should go for the round one. However, if you’d like more versatile bakeware that you could use for different types of food, then the square pizza stone could be the answer. Ultimately, what matters is the enjoyment you get from cooking your favorite food, whether that’s pizza or something else.