How to care for pizza steel determines its longevity. Effective cleaning and seasoning methods will come in handy for all lovers of homemade pizza. It’s necessary to properly treat and carefully store baking steel to always get great pizza.
If you cook your pizza yourself then you know that various of accidents may happen during this process of making pizza on a pizza steel, such as toppings and sauce leaking out of the pie, melted cheese may burn, even if you followed the recipe meticulously. You end up with your pizza steel covered in various types of stains and dirt.
So, how do we treat pizza steel, how is pizza steel different from a cast iron skillet, why seasoning is important, how you should store it and how to get rid of rust? Keep reading and you’ll find out everything you need to know about it!
Steel is resistant to acids and alkaline materials. The thermal conductivity of steel is quite high. Such products do not rust and do not burn out. They can be either matte or polished.
How To Clean Your Pizza Steel
When you learn how to properly clean your pizza steel, you can prolong the life of your baking dish and your pizza will taste delicious without the burnt aftertaste. Before we begin, it’s important to set realistic expectations. No matter how well you clean your bakeware, you can’t make them look like new again. And that’s okay! The purpose of cleaning pizza steel is to obtain a smooth surface free of deposits, stains, and odors. If you want to learn how to clean pizza steel at home, we can help you. So, grab your dirty bakeware and get to work.
When cleaning pizza steel, you should use one of several techniques that will not damage it.
Do not proceed to wash your pizza steel in a dishwasher. Only hand clean your pizza steel with hot water to avoid damaging it as it may happen in a dishwasher as it is not very gentle with dishes.
Choose thick pizza steel to prevent warping.
If there is a need for hot cleaning, use heat-resistant gloves to avoid burns. Check that the surface on which the pizza steel will be cleaned is resistant to hot steel.
Using a blunt instrument, carefully scrape off pieces of food from the pizza steel. You can use a nylon brush or plastic spatula or bench scraper to remove any burnt food particles that have stuck to it. Gently clean the pizza steel where food is being cooked.
Never use soap on the pizza steel
Although intuitively this seems like the right solution, cleaning with harsh soap in reality will lead to the irreparable destruction of the pizza steel. After such a procedure, its surface will never be the same.
If necessary, wipe the pizza steel with a damp cloth. Remove any food particles that can be removed without using a scraper.
As a last resort, it is necessary to soak the pizza steel properly in hot water to deal with tough spots such as burnt melted cheese. Baked or burnt leftover food may need to be soaked to make it easier to remove later. Soak the pizza steel in clean water overnight and try again. Keep in mind that this will absorb a lot of moisture, so allow it to dry completely.
Removing Rust From Pizza Steel
You can always use steel wool to clean rust off pizza steel. But there are other options too.
Dilute table vinegar with water in a ratio of 1:1. Spread the resulting solution over all rusty areas with a kitchen sponge. Strongly rusty items are best completely immersed in a solution of vinegar.
Leave for several hours (from 2 to 24). Remove items and scrub with a brush if necessary. Rinse with water afterwards.
Vinegar is capable of cleaning even a terribly rusty sheet of metal, just watch this video.
Using Oven Self-cleaning Function
You can also use the self-cleaning function found in many ovens. It will make washing pizza steel much easier.
First, clean the oven until all grease and dried dough residues are completely removed.
Residual oil or any other fat will generate a lot of smoke when using the self-cleaning function. Clean the steel with a cloth and water.
Wipe the steel with a washcloth. First, remove the layer of fat and accumulation of dirt from the steel. Although you will be using the self-cleaning function, removing food residue beforehand will help prevent smoke.
It is necessary to remove all large particles of food that have dried to the steel.
Then, place the steel in the oven and preheat to 500 degrees.
It is necessary to gradually heat up the furnace to prevent warping of the steel due to a sharp temperature drop. Use the preheat function to increase the heat gradually. Leave the steel in the oven for at least an hour after the oven is heated to 500 degrees.
Last, turn on the self-cleaning function.
The self-cleaning function ensures that the oven heats up strongly and is designed to burn away grease and dirt. Run a full cycle. Do not interrupt unless there is a risk of fire.
How To Season Your Pizza Steel
Take the clean pizza steel and generously grease it with any type of high smoke point oil, then wipe the oil off with paper towel leaving a thin layer of grease. Place the pizza steel in a hot oven and heat it to 350-400 F degrees and wait for about 30-60 minutes.
Seasoning pizza steel is not much different from seasoning pizza stone made of other materials. See more in ‘5 Easy Steps How To Season A Pizza Stone‘.
Cleaning A Pizza Stone
Mix equal parts soda and warm water in a small bowl. Stir until the mixture turns into a homogeneous mass. It should have a consistency similar to toothpaste. This option will help remove stains that have stuck into the stone that cannot be cleaned off during regular wiping.
Baking soda is sodium bicarbonate, which is great for cleaning dirt and grease. Soda is the best cleaner for pizza stones as it is medium abrasive and won’t change the taste of the food.
Just don’t confuse baking soda and baking powder, they are not the same thing. Baking soda, by the way, is very useful in household.
Dry it with a damp paper towel. After wiping, you need to apply a layer of soda mixture on the surface of the stove. Apply it with a damp cloth when you feel that the usual rinse no longer gives the desired result.
Re-walk over the problem areas of the pizza stone after cleaning if you are not satisfied with its appearance. Repeat the process until the problem area becomes lighter or disappears completely.
Let the stone dry completely. This will absorb more moisture than if you simply rubbed it with paper towel but wait about a day before using it again. Residual moisture can damage the stone.
You can store the stone directly in the oven, which will constantly maintain its temperature. You just need to take it out while cooking other food.
If after the holiday there is some soda left, and not just dirty kitchenware, then you can use it for cleaning, just soak the steel in it for several hours. Orthophosphoric acid, which is part of soda drinks, is able to clean grease and dirt from the steel. If there is no time to wait, then you can slightly boil the liquid in a steel for 5-10 minutes. After that, it remains only to clean off the dirt with water.
When cooking, use baking parchment or foil. It’s the easiest way to avoid tough stains.
In addition, it is better to remove fat immediately after using the steel. And even if there is absolutely no free minute for this, then at least leave it in water. This will greatly reduce the time to clean up the dish.
If, for some reason, this could not be done, it is possible to apply the appropriate method from the proposed ones. At the same time, when using cleaning products, you should not forget about protecting your hands. In any case, protective gloves are required.
Separately, it should be said that it is not recommended to cut on pizza steel or pizza stone. This can leave scratches on the material and severely dull your knife or pizza cutter. Learn how to sharpen your knives, if they are not sharp enough after all, here.
Cleaning Glass And Ceramic Bakeware
Mechanical cleaning with abrasives can only scratch the surface made of such materials. However, there are other chemical methods, including:
- sprinkle the bottom with mustard and pour hot water (it is better to leave it overnight, and in the morning just rinse with running water);
- the dough baking powder will do well with the old fat, first sprinkle the surface of the sheet with it, and then moisten it (you can use a spray bottle). After half an hour, rinse with water;
- in a ratio of 3 to 1, take soda and salt, dilute with water (the composition should turn out to be thick). Apply on a sheet and leave overnight, in the morning it will not be difficult to wash off the dirt with water.
When choosing specialized products in stores, it is important to read the composition. It is better if there is a mark “for glass”, “for ceramics”.
How To Care For Pizza Steel: FAQ
Do you oil a pizza steel?
Olive oil or any other type of fat can cause smoke when you cook food. Although some consider the process of cleaning a pizza steel to be similar to cleaning a cast iron skillet, the pores of the pizza steel actually absorb oil rather than creating a non-stick surface.
To create a non-stick coating, use cornmeal on the surface of the pizza steel.
How many times do you season pizza steel?
There is no need to re-season pizza steels before each use, re-season it every six months, depending on how often you bake pizza. Some pizza steels come pre-seasoned, so you can use new pizza steel right away after buying. Use a thin layer of high smoke point oil.
How do you treat Baking Steel?
Same as cleaning your pizza steel, you should let it cool completely before treating, if you are going to clean it, then scrape off burnt food first, and do not use harsh soaps. To season it you can use flaxseed oil or any high smoke point oil, pour a thin layer of oil and do not put the steel straight into hot oven, heat it after placing the steel inside. Carefully watch the seasoning process to prevent fires as seasoning requires high temperature.
What can I use instead of nylon brush?
Using any damp cloth would be enough, just don’t use harsh soap unless it is a thick pizza steel.
If you do not want to spend a lot of time cleaning your favorite pizza steel, be sure to cover the bottom of the pizza steel when cooking with parchment paper. Also, do not leave a dirty pizza steel for a long time, because it is much easier to clean it fresh. After use, fill the pizza steel with hot water, the grease will soak. But if the oil stains remain on the pizza steel for a long time, it will be very difficult to clean the product. In some cases, it’s even impossible.
Use steel wool to clean off rust if it appeared which can happen to non-stainless pizza steels.
Season pizza steels as seasoning creates non-stick surface.
Use nylon brush to clean your pizza steel and paper towels to thoroughly dry it from excess moisture.
Store in dry places and do not put anything heavy onto the pizza steel.
Treat your favorite pizza steel correctly so it will delight you with long service life! We hope our recommendations have helped you find out how to clean the pizza steel from soot and grease stains without damaging the material of the product.