Are you throwing a pizza party? Do you sometimes find yourself eating your pizza a little later than you prepared or ordered it? Some people like their pizza cold, but if you enjoy yours warm, you might be wondering how to keep pizza warm.
I fall in the camp of those who love warm pizza. My family and most of my friends also prefer it warm with stretchy cheese, tantalizing toppings, and a chewy base.
Whether it’s pizza night with the family or having a group of friends over, I have learned a couple of ways to ensure that pizza stays warm for longer.
So, in this article, I will show you how to keep pizza warm based on what I have learned. Keep reading to find out more!
How To Keep Pizza Warm
Try any of these methods to keep your pizza warm and delicious. Your preferred method will depend on the equipment you have at hand.
1. Microwave Method
Microwaving is a fast and convenient way to warm food. That said, there is a risk of pizza becoming soggy or drying out if you are not careful with the way you microwave the slices.
The other downside is that you can only warm a few slices at a go, which might be impractical if you have a lot of pizza to keep warm. This method is best for warming leftovers or keeping a small-sized pizza warm for a short duration.
To get started, use a sharp knife or pizza slicer to separate the pizza into individual slices. Place a few slices on a microwave-safe plate, leaving sufficient space between the slices.
Then, take a microwave-safe cup and fill it halfway with water. Place the plate of pizza in the microwave, and next to it, place the cup of water.
The cup of water ensures that the pizza neither dries out nor becomes too soggy to enjoy. In particular, the water will absorb excess radiation inside the microwave to keep the pizza from overcooking and drying out. The water will also release steam, helping to keep the pizza moist enough but not soggy.
Heat the pizza for 1 minute and check if the cheese has melted. This should be enough to rewarm the pizza. If you are warming several slices, microwave for 2 minutes, but be sure to keep an eye on the slices to avoid overcooking.
2. Direct Oven Method
Using the oven is the best way to keep pizza warm, especially if you have a large pizza or several slices to warm. There are several methods of warming the pizza using an oven, and we will get into those in a bit. But, the first method is placing the pizza directly on the oven rack.
To get started, preheat the oven to 200 degrees Fahrenheit. At this temperature, you will be able to warm the pizza evenly without the risk of burning it or drying it out.
Once the oven is warm enough, place the pizza directly on the middle rack. Remove it from the box or baking sheet. By positioning it directly on the rack, the pizza will be less soggy when you are done warming it.
Lower the oven’s temperature to between 140 and 150 degrees Fahrenheit and leave the pizza in there to warm. Lowering the temperatures allows the oven to warm and not bake the pizza.
It is best to consume the oven-warmed pizza within 2 to 3 hours. Beyond this time, the pizza will not be dangerous to eat, but its flavor and quality will deteriorate.
3. Pizza Box and Oven Method
To keep your pizza warm for longer, you can leave it in the box and reheat the pizza in the oven when you are ready to serve. But, you should be very careful not to start a fire with the inflammable box.
To keep pizza in a box warm, first, open the ventilation holes on the box. This helps to release steam as you warm the pizza in the oven so the slices will not become soggy and unpalatable.
Most pizza boxes come with vent holes but if yours doesn’t have these, use a sharp knife to make a few slits on top of the box.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 200 degrees Fahrenheit. I suggest doing this as you wait for your pizza to arrive.
When you are ready to reheat the pizza, lower the temperature to 140 degrees Fahrenheit. This safe temperature will keep pizza warm without overcooking and drying it out or causing the cardboard to catch fire.
Then, position the box of pizza in the oven’s middle rack. Be sure that the box does not touch the oven’s side panels, as this can quickly start a fire.
Allow the pizza to warm for 10 to 15 minutes or until the cheese starts to bubble and glisten. After this, you can turn off the oven and leave the pizza in there to stay warm until you are ready to serve. For maximum flavor and delicious warmness, feast on the pizza within 1 hour of warming it.
4. Pizza and Oven Stone Method
If you have a pizza stone, it will come in handy when you want a convenient, mess-free way to keep pizza warm. With this method, your pizza will retain its warmth for up to 3 hours in the oven.
First, preheat the oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Then, place the pizza stone to warm up in the oven for 30 to 45 minutes. The non-glazed stone will absorb ambient heat, which will help keep the pizza warm for a few hours. The stone will also absorb the moisture released from heating the pizza, preventing the slices from becoming soggy.
Transfer the pizza onto the stone in the oven and cover it with aluminum foil. Tucking the aluminum foil lightly allows steam to escape, keeping the pizza nice and dry.
Lower the temperature to 140 degrees Fahrenheit or the lowest setting and let the pizza warm for 10 to 15 minutes. Then, turn off the oven and leave the pizza inside to stay warm for up to 2 hours.
5. Keep leftover pizza warm using a pan
For a quick, fuss-free way to keep pizza warm, try the skillet or pan method. The oven methods I have shown you above require prior preparation, including preheating and adjusting the temperatures.
If you are in a pinch and just have a few slices to keep warm, your good old non-stick pan is an excellent solution.
To get started, preheat a medium-sized non-stick pan on moderate heat on a stovetop. Then, place a few pizza slices on the pan, cover the pan, and heat the slices for 2 to 3 minutes. Be sure to dial down the heat to the lowest setting to allow the pizza base to warm up without burning.
Next, take the lid off and pour a few drops of water onto the pan, ensuring that the water does not touch the toppings. Put the lid back on and continue heating for another 3 minutes. This will warm the toppings and cheese.
Turn the heat off and serve the slices immediately. You can also leave the slices in the pan with the lid on to keep the pizza warm for up to 30 minutes. After this, the pizza will begin to lose its warmth.
6. Insulated Pizza Bag
The best way to keep pizza warm outdoors is with an insulated bag. Whether you are going camping or for a weekend picnic, you can bring your favorite pizza with you and enjoy it warm.
Insulated pizza bags are made using water and heat-proof material and are insulated to keep food warm. The bags also feature interior grommets that release steam, helping to keep pizza dry but warm.
For the best results, use any of the methods I have recommended above to heat your pizza. Then, wrap each slice in aluminum foil to retain heat without making the pizza base soggy. Stack up the slices in your insulated pizza bag and bring them along on your outdoor adventure.
- Position a cup of boiling water underneath the rack holding the pizza in the oven, and leave it there for five minutes. This will help keep the pizza warm and sufficiently moist if you plan on leaving it in the oven for longer than one hour.
- Ensure food safety at all times. To prevent harmful bacteria, keep food at a safe temperature of 140 degrees Fahrenheit or higher. Do not leave pizza out at room temperature for more than 2 hours.
- If you are warming leftover pizza, add some of your favorite toppings for extra flavor.
Enjoying Warm Pizza Just Got Easier
A slice of warm pizza is a seriously underrated pleasure. The good news is that you don’t have to be stuck with cold, floppy pizza—as you can see, there are plenty of easy hacks you can try to keep pizza warm for as long as 3 hours.
The secret to keeping pizza warm is to balance the source of heat; it should neither be too high nor too low. This will keep those slices adequately dry without hardening them. Try the tips I have recommended, and you will never have to contend with cold pizza again.