The Gozney Roccbox portable pizza oven is much loved by its fans and begrudgingly accepted by its detractors. On the brand's site, the small oven has an average 4.9/5 star review with around 1,900 opinions weighing in, and on Amazon it has a 4.7/5 star review with almost 700 customers sharing feedback. It promises to do what bigger, professional ovens do, but in a fraction of the space — and at a fraction of the cost.
The 44-pound oven can reach up to 950 degrees Fahrenheit and cook a Neapolitan-style pizza in one minute. It also has the ability to switch from a conventional gas burner to a wood-burner to up the flavor of your favorite pies.
At $499, it's one of the pricier portable pizza ovens, coming in $100 more than its competitor, the Ooni Koda 12. But for an extra C-note, you get some solid upgrades. Read on for our take on the cult-favorite Roccbox.
What's Good About the Gozney Roccbox Pizza Oven
The insulated build gets hot — and stays hot
The stainless steel oven is insulated with calcium silicate and has a 19mm cordierite stone (for those keeping track, that's 9mm thicker than Ooni's stone). Gozney covers the body with commercial-grade silicone, so you don't run the risk of inadvertently burning yourself if you accidentally touch the sides. When you light the burner, the oven heats up faster than a traditional oven for those familiar with cranking their home ovens to the max to try to cook a better pizza.
What's more, there's no time required between pies. This oven stays hot — I found that most pizzas I cooked were done within a minute — so the only limiting factor for how quickly you can cook pizzas is your own technique. And, because it stays so hot, you don't need a door on it (as with some other portable pizza ovens).
It delivers a solid pizza
Those who have tried and tried again to replicate Neapolitan or wood-fired pizzas with a conventional oven know that they can only get so close — crank the oven to 550 degrees, split the pie's time between that initial heat and a broiler on high, etc. You work with what you got. But with the Roccbox, you get both the direct and indirect heat at once; the burner's patented baffle plate sends the flame almost all the way to the oven door.
That means the dough gets cooked perfectly, with just the right amount of leopard-spotting; the cheese melts and toppings cook, all without charring or losing character. If you've been chasing the ideal dough and don't have the space (or money) to build or buy a large outdoor wood-fired pizza oven, the Roccbox puts you in that space with a portable footprint.
It's a fun, interactive oven
Some portable pizza ovens are designed so you don't screw up your pie. Not so with the Roccbox. Though it delivers a precise and excellent cook, you need to be attentive and participate in the process, or you'll get an uneven cook with a bit more char than you'd like. If you enjoy the physicality of cooking, you'll love this oven.
Slide the pizza onto the stone and after about 25 seconds, you'll need to use the turning peel to lift and rotate the pizza 180 degrees. There's a bit of technique involved, but nothing you can't pick up in a few tries. At about the one-minute mark, the pizza is ready to come out. But, depending on how hot your oven is — among other variables — these times will change, and you need to watch closely to ensure the best results.
What’s Not Ideal About the Gozney Roccbox Pizza Oven:
The cooking surface is focused
So it heats up and stays hot. But, the Roccbox has a very small cooking area — you have room for just one 10-inch pie inside, with very little room around the edges. That means your pizza gets even heat distribution, but that also means there's very little room for adjustment.
With traditional wood-fire pizza ovens, there's a bit more space to work in — but that's because they're bigger in general. With the Roccbox, you learn to work within your means, but it's worth noting: that super-insulated oven can take a little while to cool if it's gotten too hot. Turning the burner down won't immediately deliver the results you want — patience.
Don't buy into the camping hype
The brand and other retailers market this as a travel pizza oven, something ready to take to the woods to make pizzas while you camp. It's neat in theory, but practically speaking, less so. Load up the 16.3 x 21 x 18.6-inch oven into your SUV, but remember your 20-pound propane tank (if you're opting for the traditional burner). Then grab the pizza peel, the turning peel, a cutting board and your ingredients — you can let your dough rise for hours at your campsite, right?
Also, did I mention this thing gets really, really hot? If you're anywhere in the dry Western states during wildfire season, you'd be a fool to light this up at the wrong time — or at least you'd have to watch it like a hawk during the post-cook cool-down.
Gozney Roccbox: The Verdict
The Roccbox's portable size makes it perfect for those who more than dabble in pizza, but don't have the space to commit to a full-size wood-fired outdoor oven. Maybe you're renting, maybe you've got limited space, maybe you just don't want to fully commit to the real deal. That's okay. The Roccbox will arguably get you closer than any other portable pizza oven that cranks out 10-inch pies. It's dead simple to set up, fun to use and makes a delicious pizza. Hard to argue with that.