What if we told you that you’ve probably been washing your pizza stone wrong all along? These things are pretty challenging to clean, so you might have been soaking them in hot soapy water to make your task easier.
But that’s actually the wrong way to clean a pizza stone. You have to clean these cooking tools in a particular — and cautious — way.
We’re here to show you how to clean a pizza stone properly. We’ll also share deep-cleaning methods, as well as tackling burnt pizza stones, and finally, valuable maintenance tips.
Let’s get right into it!
- Avoid using soap and water to clean your pizza stone, as the porous surface can absorb the soap and affect the taste of your pizza.
- For regular cleaning, let the stone cool, scrape off debris with a rubber spatula, wipe it with a dampened microfiber cloth, and air dry thoroughly.
- To deep clean, create a baking soda paste, apply it to stains, scrub with a nylon-bristled brush, and wipe with a dampened cloth before air drying.
- When cleaning a burnt pizza stone, heat it in the oven at 500 degrees for an hour, let it cool, scrub with a nylon-bristled brush, and wipe it with a dampened cloth.
Can You Wash a Pizza Stone With Soap and Water?
Washing your pizza stone with soap and water doesn’t sound like a bad idea. After all, some food debris can be really sticky on the stone. But soap and water is actually never good.
Don’t panic. We’ve done it, too.
But overall, you should avoid cleaning a pizza stone with soap and water. They’re not like pots and pans.
Why? The pizza stone is porous. It’s usually made from ceramic, stone, or cast iron. So it will absorb the cleaners you use. The next time you cook a pizza, the soap will get into the pizza, and then (yep, gross), you’ll end up eating it.
Clean your pizza stone with cleaners that you won’t mind eating. Soap probably isn’t one of them.
How to Clean a Pizza Stone
- Time: 20 minutes
- Difficulty: Easy
What You’ll Need
1. Let the Stone Cool
It might be tempting to plop the warm stone into warm water. After all, won’t that loosen some of the caked-on cheese?
Well, you should let the stone cool first. It’s safer for you since you’ll avoid burns. But putting a hot stone in water can also cause the stone to chip or crack since it’s a drastic temperature change.
2. Scrape Off Debris
Use your rubber or plastic spatula as a scraper to remove as much debris as possible. This includes cheese, roasted vegetables, or stubborn crusts. Avoid metal spatulas as this can scratch your stone.
3. Wipe the Stone
Dampen a microfiber cloth in warm water and wipe down the stone to remove grease and food debris.
4. Air Dry
Wipe the stone down with a clean dish towel. Then leave it to air dry thoroughly. Place it on a dish rack so that it can drip-dry vertically. It might take a good few hours to dry fully.
How to Deep Clean a Pizza Stone
Just keep in mind that a stained pizza stone is perfectly normal, and sometimes, you can’t get rid of all the marks. After using your pizza stone for a few months, you’ll notice that it’s discolored in areas, but that doesn’t mean it’s too filthy to use. It’s just part and parcel of using a pizza stone.
If you want to avoid stains on your pizza stone altogether, you can always lay down parchment paper underneath your pizza.
However, if you want to try and tackle stains, this method can certainly help.
- Time: 10 minutes
- Difficulty: Easy
What You’ll Need
1. Make a Baking Soda Paste
Baking soda is a natural abrasive cleaner, so it’s great at cleaning a pizza stone and removing grease stains.
In a bowl, mix one tablespoon of baking soda with a few drops of water until you’ve made a paste.
2. Clean Stone With Paste
Apply the baking soda paste to the stone. Scrub it gently with your nylon-bristled brush or stone brush, moving in circular motions. Spend extra time on sticky stains.
Don’t be frustrated if all the stains don’t lift. Remember that this is a normal part of owning a pizza stone.
3. Wipe the Stone
Wipe the stone with a dampened microfiber cloth to remove baking soda residue and loosened food debris. Let the stone air dry on a drying rack vertically for a few hours before using it again.
How to Clean a Burnt Pizza Stone
Is there anything you can do to clean a pizza stone that is black? We’ll be honest: not always. But don’t fret. Just because your pizza stone is darkened and discolored doesn’t mean that it’s dirty. You can still use it as normal.
However, we do have one method that’s worth a try.
- Time: 4 hours
- Difficulty: Intermediate
What You’ll Need
1. Cook the Pizza Stone
Place the pizza stone in the oven and set it to 500 degrees. Once the oven has reached the temperature, let it cook for one hour.
You might want to rotate the stone every 20 minutes to ensure all sides get evenly heated.
2. Let the Stone Cool
Turn the oven off. Leave the stone in the oven for another 1-2 hours to cool down. When it’s cool, scrub the stone with your stone brush to remove loosened black parts.
Once it’s mostly clean, wipe the stone with a dampened microfiber cloth to give it one final clean.
Pizza Stone Care and Maintenance Tips
Who knew that pizza stones were so sensitive? These handy things can make your pizza nice and crispy. But if you want your pizza stone to work properly and last a while, you need to take good care of it.
Here are our top care and cleaning tips:
- No soap or cleaning chemicals: Avoid soap, oils, and cleaning chemicals altogether. Baking soda works just fine, as well as water and a stone brush.
- Season your stone: Before the first cooking session, season your stone by baking some buttery cookies on it. This seasons it naturally without causing grease build-up.
- Dry thoroughly: Before storing your pizza stone, ensure it’s 100 percent dry. You might want to leave it drip-drying overnight to ensure this. If it’s still slightly damp, you could end up with a mold issue.
- Avoid the dishwasher: This might seem pretty obvious now that you know lots about how to clean a pizza stone. But yes, certainly avoid putting your stone in the dishwasher.
- No sharp objects: Don’t clean the pizza stone with steel wool or other metallic cleaners. This will scratch your pizza stone. If you’re struggling with stubborn debris, medium grit sandpaper is a better option.
- Don’t deep clean after every use: Scraping food off and wiping the pizza stone with water is enough for regular cleaning. The baking soda trick is only necessary for deep cleans.
- Don’t submerge in water: You might think leaving a pizza stone to soak in water will make your cleaning task easier, but the stone will soak all that water right up. The next time you make pizza using the stone, it won’t be crispy.
- Use a steel pizza peel: To transfer your pizza off the stone to your plate, use a steel pizza peel. If you use a plastic or rubber spatula, it could easily melt. A wooden pizza steel is a good option, but they’re harder to clean.
- Avoid cracking: You don’t want your pizza stone to crack. To prevent that, avoid sudden temperature changes, too much moisture, putting frozen pizza on a hot stone, dropping the pizza stone (obviously), or putting the hot pizza stone onto a cold countertop.
- Store the pizza stone in the oven: This saves you cupboard space but remember to remove the stone if issuing a self-cleaning cycle on your oven.
- Use parchment paper: If you’re scared of staining your pizza stone and don’t want to go through the whole cleaning debacle, you can always lay parchment paper down before your pizza. This will make it easier to clean the stone. Plus, your pizza will never taste funny if you have used soap on the stone before.
I Washed My Pizza Stone With Soap
Honestly… so have we. The best way to clean a pizza stone was news to us, too! So you’re not alone if you’ve done this.
But now that you know how bad it is — what do you do?
- Cover the stone: Completely cover the pizza stone with pieces of bread.
- Bake the stone: Put the stone in the oven at 350 degrees until the bread is toasted. The dough should absorb the soap within the stone’s pores.
- Clean as usual: Remove the bread, toss them in the garbage, then clean the pizza stone as usual, using the above methods. Repeat these three steps if necessary. You may also want to lay down parchment paper the next few times you cook a pizza.
Love Every Bite
A pizza stone is a wonderful investment. As if pizza isn’t good enough already, a pizza stone can make it much better.
When you know how to clean a baking stone properly, you will up your pizza game. You’ll also ensure your pizza stone lasts a long time.
Remember never to use soap or too much water to clean your stone. Scraping off excess food and wiping the stone with a damp cloth is enough. Try a baking soda paste instead of soapy water if you have sticky stains. Trust us, it works!