If you’re having a hard time deciding whether to choose between a pizza stone vs cast iron, then we’re here to help.
However, we will not be deciding for you.
All we’re going to do is to show you the advantages and disadvantages of a pizza stone vs cast iron skillet.
At least we’re on the same page here when we say that your primary goal is to achieve your version of a ‘perfect’ pizza.
You’ll need to consider several factors in choosing the right material.
You can’t cook a pizza without having one of these pieces of equipment. However, it’s a matter of choosing the right one.
The first thing to consider is the type of crust you’re aiming to make.
Do you want a thin crust that is crispier than the usual? Do you prefer a pie with lots of meats and cheese as toppings?
Another essential thing to consider is your kitchen habits. Do you prefer working in a tidy environment without any clutter around?
All of these factors will significantly influence your decision in choosing between a pizza stone vs cast iron skillet.
These stoneware slabs of terra cotta material come in different shapes – round, square and rectangle.
The porous surface of the stone absorbs moisture from the dough as it bakes in the oven which in return makes the crust much crispier.
This is why stones are still the most preferred tool in making thin-crust pies.
Stones also come in different sizes and thickness.
You can get them in sizes ranging from 10-inches to 20-inches with a thickness ranging from ½ inch to 1-inch.
If you’re into saving money, you don’t need to buy new pizza stones.
You can opt for DIY stones using super-cheap unglazed quarry tiles.
However, you need to be cautious when it comes to using quarry tiles as a pizza stone.
Make sure that they are unglazed because a glazed one may contain lead that can transfer into the food.
The microscopic pores on the stone absorb moisture from the dough and evenly distribute heat throughout the pie.
This feature makes stones ideal in making crispy crust regardless of how thick and loaded the pie is.
You are sure that every bit is cooked adequately without the bottom of the pie getting burned.
Stones offer a more extensive range of sizes and shapes to choose.
You can also apply your creativity by forming your pie differently.
They don’t necessarily need to be round or square. With stones, your imagination is your limit when it comes to shapes.
Stones tend to crack or break when they undergo a drastic change in temperature. The same happens when you accidentally drop them.
Hence, why you should be extra careful in handling stones.
Moreover, be extra cautious when buying cheap ones, they are more likely to break.
You need to preheat the stone in the oven for 30 minutes.
Thicker stones should be preheated longer than 30 minutes.
You can maximize your time by turning on the oven while you prepare the pie on the counter.
Cleaning it would be troublesome because grease, cheese drippings and tiny particles from the dough can get stuck deep into its small pores.
Since you cannot soak it immediately in water, you’ll have to wait until it cools down before you can wash it.
That would be enough time to allow grease to harden more into the pores, which makes them harder to remove.
What’s worse is that you can’t use liquid detergents because the stone can absorb them. You’ll need to use a brush to scrub the surface.
Cast iron skillet is known for its heat retention property, and you can use it to make pizzas.
As long as you have these in your kitchen, you don’t need to buy any new equipment to bake pizza.
However, make sure to season the pan first to create a non-stick surface and to protect the cast iron from rust.
You can do this by spreading a thin coating of vegetable oil over the skillet then placing it upside down onto the middle rack of the oven at 375°F. Let it stay in the oven for 1 hour.
Cast iron skillet heat up in the oven quickly. They don’t crack or break even under a sudden change in temperature.
Furthermore, these products contain durable materials which makes them almost impossible to break, even if you drop them.
They have handles that make them easier to move in and out of the oven.
However, don’t make this an excuse for not wearing oven mitts.
Always wear your oven gloves when handling these things.
Cleaning them is super easy. Soak in water or place them under running water.
Additionally, washing them with liquid detergents is fine since they do not absorb liquids.
Enameled cast iron should not be used in temperatures above 400°F. Since pizza must bake at about 425°F.
Therefore, if you intend to use a cast iron skillet to cook pizza, make sure to choose the one without enamel.
These withstand a higher temperature, but we recommend not going beyond 500°F.
Cast iron skillets are heavy. Hence, the handles because you’ll need them to carry them around.
Be careful in handling these things because you absolutely won’t like it when you accidentally drop it on your toes.
We’re quite sure you now understand the difference between a pizza stone vs cast iron.
Now it’s time to face the reality of choosing which of these 2 is best suited for you.
In the end, it all depends on how you like your pizza and of course your habits.