You don’t always need a pan to cook a frozen pizza. Certain brands have in their cooking directions to bake on the oven racks. While you can probably get away with it for most frozen pizzas. There is other options and methods to bake a pizza without a pan.
You can bake most frozen pizzas without using a pan. Instead place the pizza directly on the oven racks and follow the cooking instructions. A pizza can also cooked on a grill without needing a pan.
Usually frozen pizza’s will turn out really good this way but. There is two potential problems with cooking a frozen pizza on the oven rack.
So lets cover those issues, then I can share helpful tips and other ways to bake a frozen pizza without a pan.
Do You Need A Pan To Cook Frozen Pizza?
We covered this ground already and we now know you don’t always need to use a pan to bake your pizza. Which is good in case for some reason you don’t have a baking pan.
This did actually happen to me and family when we were on a vacation once. Quick story is that while out of town and staying in a hotel room with a kitchen. This room for some reason did not have a pizza pan or anything suitable.
Maybe someone took it with them? I don’t know why but anyways, we wanted to reheat leftover pizza and had to improvise. So I have been in this situation before.
What makes baking a pizza directly on the oven difficult is this. After the pizza has cooked and your ready to remove the pizza what do you use? grabbing a hot pizza with your hands is tricky for obvious reasons.
You don’t want it to burn you or fall apart. That is why a pan is useful when baking pizza’s. Other than that a pan unlike a pizza stone or steel doesn’t do much for baking a pizza.
The other potential problem is that the oven racks might not provide proper support. You don’t want the pizza do start to fall through the racks, making it impossible to eat and creating a mess in the oven.
Good news is most frozen pizzas will hold up just fine. The crust is solid enough and will be even more so once it crisps up a bit. Just be careful with thinner crust pizzas with heavy toppings and leftover pizza.
In conclusion pizza pans don’t do much in the cooking process. The thin metal might help crisp up the crust a bit, but nothing like a stone or pizza steel will.
The pans do make life easier though and you should get one if you don’t already. A specific pizza pan is one that is rounded and is spotted with perforated holes. Allowing the heat to reach the crust easily and proves for a crispier crust.
A lot of pizza restaurants use them for their ovens, especially conveyor ovens. You can find inexpensive ones on online like this Cuisinart pizza pan on Amazon.
Don’t Have A Pizza Pan?
Let’s say you don’t want to cook the pizza directly on the oven racks. You can get by without one this time.
You’re thinking there has to be other ways to do this? Here are 4 options for cooking without a pizza pan.
Pizza Stone or Steel
You are in luck and about to find out some creative ways to cook a pizza. First you should that pizza stones are my personal favorite way to bake a pizza.
Pizza stones are a great alternative to pans for many reasons. Which you can check out in the above post. The main being that they get the crust done and crispy very quickly.
Pizza steels are another option and from what I read are even better than stones. Pizza steels or baking steels are like glorified pans, specifically made for baking.
I have never tried one but plan to in the near future, but for now I really enjoy my pizza stone.
The easiest and most humble alternative to a pan is a piece of aluminum foil. Which is easy to come by and will work for most pizzas. One issue with foil is the pizza can stick to it after baking.
So use a non stick cooking spray like PAM, olive or vegetable oils or cornmeal/flour. Put these on the foil before placing the pizza on top. Also make sure to use more than one sheet of foil.
The goal with foil is to create a makeshift pan by layering the foil with about three layers. This makes its more supportive when the moving pizza in and out of your oven.
Cooking your pizza on the grill is a unique way to get the job done. You don’t need a pan to do this but you can use a pizza stone (High Five!).
Similar to using the oven rack you can slide the pizza onto the grill grates. Just make sure they are clean. You don’t want any leftover to cook onto the pizza or have the crust stick.
Just heat the grill for about 5 minutes first then brush off the grates. Again it might not hurt to spray the grates first. In this case you can brush your crust with oil first to prevent sticking.
Grilling is also a faster way to cook a pizza than the oven. Just watch it closely.
When you don’t have a oven, grill or any pans or foil. The microwave can be your saving grace. All you need is a big plate or use the table in the microwave.
I do not recommend this method as your pizza will end up very soft. It is hard to get a crispy crust using just a microwave. Most frozen pizzas will have microwave instructions to follow.
In my opinion the best part about microwaving a pizza. Is that its possibly the fastest, easiest and cleanest way.
Although I would never do this because the convenience does not outweigh the quality. But I’ll try not to judge if you end up liking your pizza this way.
Thawing Frozen Pizza
I have never seen instructions on a frozen pizza that says to thaw out the pizza first. Usually they are meant to be popped in a hot oven right from the freezer.
Some have said that the frost on the pizza causes the pizza to become soggy as it creates steam. I don’t notice this but have never tried to see the difference.
If I were to thaw a pizza out I would do this in the refrigerator overnight or for a couple hours first.