When it comes to reheating leftover pizza, the last thing you want is to lose its crispiness, flavor, and texture. This mostly happens if you leave the pizza in the fridge for longer, say 2-3 days.
The good news is, you can always retain the crust’s original taste if you reheat it correctly. To do this, you can use a toaster oven, pizza stone, microwave, gas grill, or a skillet.
No matter which method you opt for, you’ll always want to keep the original taste. It would be best to ask yourself a few questions before choosing your ideal method for reheating pizza.
For instance, how long is it going to take to reheat the leftover pizza? Are you in a hurry or late for work? Time is always money, and you don’t want to be late for whatever job meeting or class you may have scheduled.
Reheating pizza in a toaster oven is arguably the best method there is. Toaster ovens are quick, efficient, and very easy to use. Most of all, it’s the easiest way to make your leftover pizza taste fresh again.
Basically, a toaster oven is an ideal solution if you’re in a hurry and need to retain the pizza’s original taste – or at least come close. With the toaster oven’s high and direct heat warming up the rising air, your pizza re-melts fast, helping to keep the cheese fresh.
How to Reheat Pizza in Toaster Oven
The procedure is straightforward. It’s the same way you always reheat other foods, but this time the required temperature for reheating a leftover pizza is 425°F (or 218 °C for our English relatives).
And then you’ll need to leave the pizza inside for about 5 minutes. Anyways, let’s go through the step-by-step process.
Steps 1: Let the toaster oven preheat
The very first step, as expected, is to preheat the toaster oven to 450 °F. This is the optimal temp for recooking a leftover pizza without losing its taste.
Step 2: Cove the sheet pan
Use a cooking spray to cover the sheet pan. This prevents the pizza’s crust from sticking on the pan.
You can do with any pan size as long as it fits inside the toaster oven. Also, note that most pans will fill only about four pizza slices.
Step 3: Set the pizza slices
Place the slices one at a time. And Do Not overcrowd the slices; otherwise, you’ll end up with a mess of slices sticking to each other. You don’t want that, do you?
Step 4: Cook on medium heat
Cook the slices on medium heat and leave them for about 5 to 7 minutes, depending on how thick the slices are. Always look for melting cheese, which is a sign they’ve reheated enough.
Step 5: Take the pan off the oven
Use a spatula to remove the pan from the toaster oven.
Step 6: Let cool and serve
Leave the pizza slices for about 5 minutes to cool down before eating.
Using a Normal Sized Oven
Other than a toaster oven, the normal-sized oven is an excellent option if you’re looking to reheat more slices of pizza at once.
Size isn’t a limit with a standard oven. And it provides the best reheating of leftover pizza. That’s because it assures slow, yet keen reheating.
An oven actually retains the crispy, crunchy crust. The process is pretty much the same as the toaster oven but with a slight difference.
Step 1: Preheat the oven
The very first step is to preheat the oven to 450˚ F. Make sure to insert the baking pan inside the oven while it’s preheating.
Note that this is way above the 140 F required to kill any bacteria found in the pizza. So, you’re safe there!
Step 2: Remove the baking pan
Once the oven has reached the 450˚ F temperature, use a spatula to remove the baking pan.
Step 3: Set the slices on the pan
Place the pizza slices on the pan and return them inside the oven.
Step 4: Let cook for 10 minutes
Leave to cook for about 10 minutes. Check the cheese to see if it has re-melted
Step 5: Remove pizza from the oven
Once the 10-min timer has elapsed, remove the pizza from the oven. Once again, be careful and use the spatula.
Step 6: Let the slices cool
Let it rest for about 5 minutes before serving.
Alternative Methods For Reheating Pizza
Using a Stovetop and a Skillet
This is probably the simplest way to reheat a leftover pizza. All you have to do is place the skillet on the stovetop, heat it over medium heat, and place the pizza slices on the skillet.
Of course, the trick is to sprinkle some water on the sides of the pizza – on the skillet – and cover to make sure the steam cooks up the pizza.
It is as easy as it sounds. There isn’t much to learn here. Still, here’s a step-by-step procedure on how to reheat a leftover pizza using a skillet.
- Step 1: Set the skillet and stovetop
First, you need to place a skillet on the stovetop and light it up. Make sure to heat the skillet on medium heat.
- Step 2: Add the slices
Secondly, add the slices of pizza and cook for like 2 to 3 minutes. Make sure the skillet is uncovered.
- Step 3: Spray the pan with water
Add a little water on the pan, and then cover it. Make sure you don’t sprinkle the water directly on the pizza slices. Instead, spray the sides of the pan.
By adding water, you’re creating steam that will guarantee the toppings are hot and well cooked.
- Step 4: Let cook
After covering the skillet, leave the pizza to cook for about 4 to 5 minutes, depending on the pizza’s thickness.
- Step 5: Remove and serve
Uncover the skillet and check to see if the cheese has melted. Finally, remove the skillet from the stovetop and let the pizza cool off before eating.
Using a Gas Grill
The gas grill is something very few folks ever think about when it comes to reheating something. It’s always about grilling and barbecuing. But it never crosses your head that it can also be used to reheat a leftover pizza.
Now, there isn’t much of a process involved in this. The only thing you need to know is to use low heat. You don’t want to burn the pizza slices.
Once you’ve set the gas grill on low heat, you can place the slices over the grill and turn it from time to time to make sure the cheese is melted.
Using a Pizza Stone
If you have a pizza stone, then you’re a few steps away from having your leftover pizza reheated. A pizza stone is not only fast, but it creates an almost original taste.
All you need to do is place the pizza slices over the pizza stone and turn the temperatures to about 400 degrees F.
You’ll then leave the pizza cooking for a few minutes before finally removing it using a spatula. The best thing about the pizza stone is that the crust feels more crunchy and charred.
Using a Microwave
Finally, microwaving pizza to reheat it is probably the most common method among pizza eaters. It’s fast and very, very simple!
Most pizza experts don’t really recommend this method. This is because microwaving doesn’t cook the inside of the pizza, and the crust is always very dried up.
Also, with a microwave, the pizza’s original taste gets lost. However, this is the fastest method, especially if you’re in a hurry and very late.
The best way to microwave a pizza to heat it is by being creative. The trick is placing the pizza pan (or plate) over a cup of water before turning on the microwave.
The water helps add humidity to the pizza, preventing the crust from being dried up completely. Without the mug of water, the crust may feel rubbery.
Also, it’s advisable to place a towel between the pizza slices. This is to help absorb some of the moisture.
Toaster Oven vs. Alternative Pizza Reheating Methods
I guess we’ve established that using a microwave to reheat pizza should only be your last resort. This is because it produces the least tasty pizza.
When it comes to retaining the taste, the toaster oven is a clear winner. The standard oven is also really fast and produces a timely result. And honestly, the quality is just as good as using a toaster oven.
The only advantage a regular oven has over a toaster oven is size. While a toaster oven is limited to about five slices of pizza, the normal-sized pizza can reheat an entire box of pizza.
However, the smaller the oven is, the better the result. The confined heat guarantees quality pizza. And that’s why a toaster oven is best.
When compared to skillet, gas grill, and pizza stone, only the latter comes close. While a skillet is the easiest to reheat a pizza, it doesn’t match the toaster oven.
With a skillet, the crispiness is retained, and the crust feels crunchy as expected. The only difference is the cheese and the pepperoni, both of which aren’t cooked well compared to using a toaster oven.
You’ll want to be sure you choose a method that retains the original taste of your leftover pizza. It should also be fast—you don’t want to get late for work!
And that method is none other than reheating pizza in a toaster oven. Of course, nothing’s perfect, and this method has its downsides.
So, you’d have to contend with reheating few slices at a time. Nonetheless, using a toaster oven is the best way to reheat pizza that was left out overnight. It keeps the crust crispy, the cheese melted, and just as tasty as it came ordered.