When you come to bake a pizza in your home, you’re almost certainly looking to reduce the mess and fuss of the process as much as possible. We definitely understand that - enough people have had melted cheese spilled on the inside of their oven to know when it’s a good time to protect the surfaces.
Pizza itself is possibly the world’s favorite food. Not only is it simply delicious, but the simplicity and customizability of the dish make it hard to turn down. With that said, though, it’s worth considering that not everyone in the world has handy access to a great pizza oven on short notice. Therefore, you might need to find an alternative, or even just a slightly better system.
In this system of looking for a better way to make pizza, you might be tempted by parchment paper and aluminum foil - they’re common, cheap, and really easy to work with!
We’re going to talk about using either of those options for your home pizza adventures in this article. So, let’s dive into it and talk about pizza making.
Can you cook pizza on parchment paper?
You can definitely cook pizza on parchment paper, though it’s not really ideal.
The reason that it does work well is that parchment paper is generally functional for pretty much everything you could want to use it for. Not only might it be convenient for preventing food from sticking to a baking tray in your oven, but also, it will cool quickly, allowing you to easily touch the paper itself.
A negative to bear in mind, however, is that not all parchment paper is created equal. For example, some parchment paper is only rated for cooking up to a total temperature of 420˚F. Other paper can be perfectly safe for cooking up to 450˚F.
Considering that home pizza baking is usually done in the general range of 430-450˚F, it can be quite unsafe to work with paper not rated for those high temperatures. The main risk, of course, would be the paper catching fire in your oven. The smaller, and much more likely, risk, though, would be the paper starting to char and crumble while it sits in your oven. This will likely lead to the pizza itself getting paper flakes across and throughout it, which is less than ideal.
The general takeaway from this point is that you should aim for recipes that stick to lower temperatures when using parchment paper, which will allow you to maintain your pizza’s quality.
The main thing that we really adore about parchment paper, and we’re sure we’re not alone in this, is that it prevents messes. It makes the inside of your oven much easier to clean since you can easily remove the paper and throw it into the trash.
This is great, but since you’re generally moving pizza onto a baking stone, the baking paper won’t actually do much to prevent the pizza from creating a mess. The extreme heat of a pizza stone does that already, so adding baking paper to the equation is unnecessary.
On top of that, parchment paper can lower the temperature at the center of the base of the pizza, leading to your food being a little soggy and undercooked in that region.
Related article Undercooked Pizza Dough (Best Way To fix It)
The takeaway from this point is that baking paper may be unnecessary if you’re working with a pizza stone. If you do find that your pizzas are generally overcooked in the center, though, you could use parchment paper to combat this problem.
Can you cook pizza on aluminum foil?
Aluminum foil can work as an interesting replacement for a pizza stone, though it can also reduce the overall crispiness of the pizza if used improperly.
Aluminum foil reflects heat very well on the shiny side, and we can use this to our advantage. For example, you could easily use the shiny side of some foil to reflect intense heat onto the base of a pizza sitting on the shelf above. This heat will serve to crisp the base of the pizza that you’re using a lot better than parchment paper would, allowing you to create some pizza magic in your home!
However, foil often behaves inconsistently. Since it’s so thin and there can be so many different changes in the production process, the final piece of foil that you’re working with can sometimes end up being a little too unpredictable.
Therefore, we would certainly recommend that, should you find yourself using foil to bake pizza, you check the pizza regularly. This will help to ensure that the pizza you’re working with will be cooked well, rather than overcooked or undercooked.
Something to bear in mind, however, is that if the foil is directly touching the base of the pizza, moisture will not be drawn from the dough as efficiently. This could lead to a soggier, less tasty pizza that is simply not quite as good as it could be.
The best way to avoid this is to ensure that the pizza is never directly touching the aluminum foil that you’re using. Instead, it should be sitting a short distance away, on a small shelf or cooling rack within the oven. This will increase air circulation, and thereby ensure that the pizza is cooked an awful lot better.
To sum up, there is no real way that parchment paper or aluminum foil will utterly destroy a pizza in your oven. You might find that there are some ways that pizza can be enhanced using these techniques, though.
To ensure that you get the best pizza possible, ensure that you aim for lower temperatures when using parchment paper, as it may burn. Also, ensure that you don’t place tinfoil directly against the base of the pizza you’re using. Instead, leave a buffer of a short distance to allow for the airflow within the oven to draw moisture out of the pizza dough. This will make sure that the final homemade pizza you create will be as well-baked as possible.