AmazingRibs.com is supported by our Pitmaster Club. Also, when you buy with links on our site we may earn a finder’s fee. Click to see how we test and review products.

Ooni Karu 16 Multi-Fuel Pizza Oven Rated And Reviewed

Share on:
ooni karu 16

Until Ooni, if you wanted an authentic restaurant-grade pizza you had to pay thousands for an installation. Then, in 2012, Ooni pretty much invented the lightweight modestly priced but awesome backyard pizza oven. Since then they have improved their designs and there are many imitators.

Ooni has introduced a series of steadily improving pizza ovens culminating in the remarkable Ooni Karu for about $800. It can bake a 16-inch pie in less than 2 minutes as you can see in real-time in the video below, and yes, that means the sausage is cooked through, the cheese is bubbling, and there are the desirable leopard spots on the underside. Here’s a video of how to make a pizza with the Ooni Karu 16:

Up your game: Join our Pitmaster Club. Try it out for free for 30 days. No credit card is needed. No spam. Join now and Be Amazing!

It burns either 5-inch log splits or charcoal, and with an optional $100 attachment, it can burn propane. I got a Karu up to 900°F in 30 minutes on a frigid 7°F day with propane.

There’s a chimney at the front to help pull the smoke and heat across the top of the pie and a glass front door to retain heat. It has folding legs and good looks. There’s a thermometer under the stone, and unlike its competitors from Gozney, the stone can be removed for cleaning.

Like what you’re reading? Click here to get Smoke Signals, our free monthly email that tells you about new articles, recipes, product reviews, science, myth-busting, and more. Be Amazing!

There’s an optional cover that doubles as a carrying case for portability. I never bother to use it and Karu remains rain and snowproof. Just remember to put the plug in the chimney and take it out when you preheat.

Mascarpone, Nutella, Strawberry Pizza

You’ll need a pizza peel (Ooni sells a nice metal one that is more slippery than wood) and, although there is a thermometer, I like having an Infrared gun thermometer. I also bought an adapter so I can run it off a 1-pound propane tank rather than a 20-gallon tank, perfect for picnics, beach parties, and tailgaters.

Because it is essentially a broiler, you can cook steaks and other foods on it in a pan. You don’t want steak juices and fat on the porous stone. But that is a nice feature, you can remove and clean the stone if it gets cheese or sauce on it. You can’t do that on many other devices, notably the Gozney units.

Get a sneak peak at Meathead’s next book. He shares chapters with members of our Pitmaster Club as he finishes them. Click here for a free 30 day trial. No credit card needed. No spam. Click here to Be Amazing!

My only complaint is that it is easy to slide the pie into the flame if you are not careful. It would be nice if they put a small flange in front of the flame as they have done with the less expensive Koda.

Although this design has all the bells and whistles, I prefer the 16-inch Ooni Koda for only $600 or the 14-inch Koda for $400. They don’t have or need a door or chimney because they burn only gas. So they are simpler, lighter weight, and lower profile. I see no need to burn wood or charcoal. Maintaining temperature is trickier with these fuels, and in 2 minutes they don’t impact the flavor.

Warranty

All Ooni products come with a one-year warranty as standard. If you’ve ordered an oven or gas burner, you can extend it to a three-year warranty by registering it on Ooni’s website.

We thank Ooni for providing a Karu 16 for our tests.

  • Item Price:
    $ 799
  • Where to buy (buying from this supplier supports this website):
  • Made in USA:
    no
  • Review Method:
    Cooked On It
    We have hands-on experience testing this product. We have also gathered info from the manufacturer, owners and other reliable sources.
  • Primary Function:
    Pizza Oven
  • Fuel:
    Charcoal, Propane Gas, Logs, More Than One Fuel

Related articles

Related reviews

Published On: 11/10/2022 Last Modified: 11/29/2022

  • Meathead - Founder and publisher of AmazingRibs.com, Meathead is known as the site's Hedonism Evangelist and BBQ Whisperer. He is also the author of the New York Times Best Seller "Meathead, The Science of Great Barbecue and Grilling", named one of the "100 Best Cookbooks of All Time" by Southern Living.

 

High quality websites are expensive to run. If you help us, we’ll pay you back bigtime with an ad-free experience and a lot of freebies!

Millions come to AmazingRibs.com every month for high quality tested recipes, tips on technique, science, mythbusting, product reviews, and inspiration. But it is expensive to run a website with more than 2,000 pages and we don’t have a big corporate partner to subsidize us.

Our most important source of sustenance is people who join our Pitmaster Club. But please don’t think of it as a donation. Members get MANY great benefits. We block all third-party ads, we give members free ebooks, magazines, interviews, webinars, more recipes, a monthly sweepstakes with prizes worth up to $2,000, discounts on products, and best of all a community of like-minded cooks free of flame wars. Click below to see all the benefits, take a free 30 day trial, and help keep this site alive.


Post comments and questions below

grouchy?

1) Please try the search box at the top of every page before you ask for help.

2) Try to post your question to the appropriate page.

3) Tell us everything we need to know to help such as the type of cooker and thermometer. Dial thermometers are often off by as much as 50°F so if you are not using a good digital thermometer we probably can’t help you with time and temp questions. Please read this article about thermometers.

4) If you are a member of the Pitmaster Club, your comments login is probably different.

5) Posts with links in them may not appear immediately.

Moderators

  Max

Click for comments...

Spotlight

These are not paid ads, they are a curated selection of products we love.

All of the products below have been tested and are highly recommended. Click here to read more about our review process.

Use Our Links To Help Keep Us Alive

Many merchants pay us a small referral fee when you click our “buy now” links. This has zero impact on the price you pay but helps support the site.


A Propane Smoker That Performs Under Pressure

The Masterbuilt MPS 340/G ThermoTemp XL Propane Smoker is the first propane smoker with a thermostat, making this baby foolproof. All you need to do is add wood to the tray above the burner to start smokin’. Click here to read our detailed review.


Our Favorite Backyard Smoker

The amazing Karubecue is the most innovative smoker in the world. At its crux is a patented firebox that burns logs above the cooking chamber and sucks heat and extremely clean blue smoke into the thermostat-controlled oven. Click here for our review of this superb smoker.


Groundbreaking Hybrid Thermometer!

Thermapen One Instant Read Thermometer

The FireBoard Spark is a hybrid combining instant-read capability, a cabled temperature probe, Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi connectivity. Couple that with high standards of design and workmanship and it’s a “must own.” Click here to read our comprehensive Platinum Medal review.


The Cool Kettle With The Hinged Hood We Always Wanted


It’s hard to beat a Weber kettle, but Napoleon holds its own and adds some unique features to make their 22″ Pro Cart a great alternative! Click here for more about what makes this grill special.