This Gozney Roccbox review might be a little overdue.
We've been reviewing pizza ovens of all shapes and sizes for about 4 years now. And nearly every pizza oven review we released was met with dozens of comments claiming that the Gozney Roccbox was a far superior pizza oven.
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So when we tested eight 12-inch pizza ovens against each other a few months ago, we were excited to finally be able to see what all the hype was about.
12.2" by 13.4"
12" x 3.25"
Liquid propane gas; optional wood burner
Max. pizza size
Gozney Roccbox: with dual-fuel options
The Gozney Roccbox is a dual-fuel capable pizza oven, but with your base purchase of the oven alone it's prepared to cook with gas. Gozney also sells a wood burner separately and the burners are incredibly easy to exchange.
We have reviewed several different brands before that offer dual-fuel options and no other brand has perfected the detachable burner system as well as Gozney.
Gas Fired Oven
The Gozney Roccbox comes with a gas burner, and this burner means business. At full power on a nice day, it can heat the pizza stone up to 700° within 10 minutes. The flame rolls over the roof of the oven and sometimes even peeks out the open door. The heat it produces is truly impressive.
At these extreme temperatures, you can cook Neapolitan-style pizza in 90 seconds. However, it does take some real skill and the right ingredients to cook the crust and the toppings evenly. We typically heat the Roccbox oven up with the gas burner on high but then turn the flame down to low right before launching the pizza to prevent the toppings from burning.
Recovery time between pizzas is quick, enabling you to cook consecutive pizzas one after another during a pizza party.
Wood Fired Cooking
For an extra $100, you can purchase the detachable wood burner for your Gozney Roccbox pizza oven.
Can I be honest?
It's not necessary.
Wood burners on 12-inch pizza ovens are all too small to fit very much fuel and because of that, you have to add fuel about every 5 minutes. (This statement goes for pretty much every brand of 12-inch wood pizza oven we've tested). It is a constant chore to keep the wood burner firing and it never does reach the high temperatures that you can achieve with the gas burner that is already included in your purchase.
Also, you literally cannot taste the difference. We've done blind taste tests around here so many times, and as much as people are convinced they CAN tell the difference, they cannot.
Portable Pizza Oven
Most 12" pizza ovens are intended to be portable, though some make it easier than others. Though the Roccbox pizza oven weighs a hefty 44 pounds, it includes the most simple, yet powerful velcro carry strap that really simplifies the mobility of this oven.
The fact that you can safely carry this pizza oven with one hand using the strap makes it more portable in my opinion than a bulky, but lighter oven that I have to manage with 2 hands. Also, and maybe more importantly, the pizza stone is locked in place and secure and you don't have to worry about it slipping out of the oven during transport.
The Roccbox cover (sold separately) also includes this velcro strap handle feature.
Many might argue that the Gozney Roccbox is overpriced and might be tempted to "save money" by choosing a less expensive oven. But something to consider is that the Roccbox includes a pizza peel, which is a necessary accessory for using a pizza oven.
We've used a LOT of different pizza peels over the last several years and they are definitely not all created equal. Some peels will cause even the most experienced pizza slingers to fail their launch because they are just simply garbage.
Gozney however, included quite possibly our all-time favorite pizza peel with the purchase of their oven. They say it's an $85 value, and while I'm a big fan of this peel, I don't know that I would be willing to spend $85 on it alone, but it's definitely justification for the overall price of the Roccbox oven.
So if you're comparing prices of pizza ovens, be sure to factor in the additional expense of purchasing the peel that you will require. And I don't recommend going cheap here if you want to actually enjoy your outdoor pizza-making experience.
The Gozney Roccbox has a truly unique design that utilizes a safe-touch commercial-grade silicone jacket on the outside of the oven. Between the silicone jacket and the incredibly dense insulation within the oven body itself, the intense heat that you're able to achieve inside the oven stays right where it belongs.
We've tested it, and while the Roccbox isn't exactly cool to the touch when fired up, it is definitely safe to touch.
Our Gozney Roccbox Review
What is the difference between the Gozney Roccbox and the Ooni Karu 12G pizza ovens?
The Gozney Roccbox and Ooni Karu 12G are both leaders in the world of pizza ovens, leaving many consumers to debate which one to purchase.
Ooni Karu 12G
While the Roccbox Oven does cost more than the Ooni Karu 12G, you must remember that it includes the (high quality) pizza peel, which will need to be purchased separately for the Ooni. For reference, Ooni's 12" perforated pizza peel costs $60, which closes in the price gap to within $10 of each other.
To point out the obvious, without additional purchases, the Roccbox is a gas-fired oven and the Karu 12G is a wood-fired oven. They both can achieve dual-fuel capabilities at about the same price of $99.
Which fuel source do you think you'll use more often?
Propane gas is super easy to source and super easy to control. It also helps the oven temperature recover quickly between pizzas.
Wood for 12" ovens isn't easy to source yourself. You might think (as we did) that you'll just cut down your own splits of wood rather than spend $30-$45 on a box of fuel already cut to size, but the truth is that's a lot of work and we don't always have the tools we need to cut logs short enough.
Also, as I mentioned previously, 12" ovens don't have a lot of space for a wood fire. The Karu 12G does have more room for wood than the Roccbox however, it is still a constant chore to keep the fire fed and hot enough to cook pizzas.
We've used plenty of other ovens with dual-fuel capabilities during all of our testing for the best pizza oven, and pretty much every single time we have preferred cooking with gas over wood (at this size).
Now, give me a big pizza oven like my Alfa 4 Pizze and I prefer wood 100%. But at that size I'm working with much longer logs and don't have to fight to keep my fire hot enough.
Considering ease of use
Cooking with gas, I would consider both of these pizza ovens to be equally easy to use. For both of them you have to move to the back of the oven to adjust the gas knob so there isn't really an advantage over one or the other in that regard.
Cooking with wood, I would consider the Ooni Karu 12G to be easier to use. There's more room for fuel and that really helps with fire management.
Switching between fuel types, the Roccbox is the clear winner. It is super simple to remove one burner and switch to the next and it's even possible to make the switch with a hot oven (using the proper high heat gloves, of course). The Karu 12G requires reaching inside the oven to pull out the fuel tray and it's hard to do that without getting soot all up your arm.
I know you're probably going to hate this answer, but they all taste the same. Wood, gas, Roccbox, Karu, it doesn't matter. The pizzas all taste the same. The difference is in the experience of making them.
Is the Gozney Roccbox worth it?
If you find a 12" pizza oven for a lower price than the Roccbox (and we know you definitely can), they usually cost less for a reason. Gozney built a high-quality pizza oven that's meant to last. The Roccbox is easy to use, looks great in the backyard, and sets you up for success with your very first cook.