One of the most enjoyable things about growing your own food is using the produce you grow to create delicious dinners for you and your family. There is something special about taking food from the ground and eating it right there and then, especially if you can cook and eat al fresco. If you love to cook outdoors, a barbecue can be a good idea – but how about something a little different? How do you like the idea of being able to cook pizza outdoors in your very own DIY pizza oven? Like the sound of that? Then read on.
What You Will Need To Make a DIY Pizza Oven:
The cool thing about this simple DIY pizza oven design is that you can make it using materials that you may already have to hand, materials that can come from your own garden or nearby or which can easily be sourced for next to nothing from a reclamation yard or friends or neighbours.
To make the base, to raise your oven to a comfortable working height you will need:
Reclaimed breeze blocks, bricks or rocks. Glass bottles to stack in the inside of the base structure. Clay mix to create a level top to the base.
To make the oven itself you will need:
Clay & sand (or mud that has a good mix of both), straw and water. This will make the cob for your oven dome. Sand (mixed with some mud) will also be used to create a dome shape to support the oven as it dries. Newspaper, to cover the support dome, to make it easier to remove once the oven dome has dried.
Making Your DIY Pizza Oven
- Dig to a depth of around 20cm to form a foundation for the structure.
- Build a dry stone wall, brick or breeze block base to the height you want your oven to be less around 15cm.
- Fill the inside of the base with glass wine bottles, stacked flat.
- Cover the base with a 15cm thick layer of clay-rich mud and leave to dry.
- Build a mound of wet sand (mixed with a little mud) to form the shape of your dome.
- Cover the dome in newspaper to help make removing this material easier later on.
- Mould cob material (mix of clay, sand, straw and water) around this dome to form your oven. Remember to leave a hole in the top for a chimney and an arched doorway to the front.
- Leave cob to dry – this may take a few days, depending on the climate where you live.
- Once the cob is dry enough to hold its shape well, remove the material from inside and clean it out.
- Build your chimney by forming clay around a glass bottle and leaving it to dry, at which point you can easily remove the bottle.
- Build a small fire within the chimney and keep it going steadily for 6-8 hours to bake the cob and harden the structure.
You can now begin to use your cob oven to make your own delicious pizzas topped with produce you have grown in your polytunnel garden. Have you made your own pizza oven? Let us know below.
Why Build a Pizza Oven?
Pizza ovens have endless possibilities and can be used often during parties, family get-togethers and on warm summer nights. Making your own pizza is a great way to use up root vegetables if you fancy something refreshingly healthy for dinner.
Your pizza oven will quickly become the social hub of your garden.
Elizabeth Waddington is a writer and green living consultant living in Scotland. Permaculture and sustainability are at the heart of everything she does, from designing gardens and farms around the world, to inspiring and facilitating positive change for small companies and individuals.
She also works on her own property, where she grows fruit and vegetables, keeps chickens and is working on the eco-renovation of an old stone barn.