Pizza has long been one of man’s best friends. Crispy, cheesy, melty, meaty – it’s a winning proposition all around. One of the beauties of pizza is how well it makes multiple meals. The ginormous 20-inch NY-style pizza pepperoni above (from the stupendous Fat Sully’s within Denver) provided 5 delicious meals over the course of 4 days. How many other foods can do that for ya?
The real problem (if you can really call it a problem) is figuring out the simplest way to eat it after Day 1. There are of course those that believe that reheating pizza in any fashion constitutes true sacrilege – that certain should always eat their leftovers cold. Certainly, cold pizza could be a delicious and easy option.
But sometimes you want something warm in your belly and wish to bring back the original flavors and get the hot grease flowing again. How should you go about doing so? Do you pop it in the microwave? Throw it on the grill? Luckily for you, we decided to test out the best ways to reheat your pizza. Our findings may surprise you (as they did me), and may in fact lead to a slice of pie that was even better than the initial.
So long, soggy slices! We found the best way to reheat pizza in the oven and on the stove.
Does the thought of day-old pizza give you chills? Regardless if the ‘za came from the delivery boy or Grandma’s cookbook, the question of how to reheat pizza the right way is one that’s troubled mankind for longer than any of us care to remember. So, let’s set the record straight. Here are two oh-so-easy ways to make that sad-looking slice taste as good as new once more.
How to Store Your Left Over Pizza
Your method of reheating is not the only factor in play as to how it will taste the next day(s); how you store your pizza in the fridge also matters. Most folks (including myself, before this article) just throw the box in the fridge and leave it at that. While acceptable, I learned that the best way to store pizza is to line a plate/tupperware with paper towels, then put on a layer of pizza, then cover with paper towels again, then wrap the whole thing in plastic wrap. This ensures ultimate freshness.
How to Reheat Pizza in Microwave
Before writing this article, throwing the ‘za in the microwave was my go-to method of reheating. It’s by far the fastest and most convenient method, and it’s all I ever really knew. So that’s where I started in this experiment. Now, because of some preliminary research, I knew this wasn’t going to be the best method, so I made some adjustments that I knew would make it better. If you are like me, you always just threw it in the microwave on full power for 30 or so seconds and came away with a sort of wet, rubbery mess. But it was still pizza, and ultimately, still tasty. Any combination of cheese and meat and bread is going to be good, even if not excellent.
After some asking around, though, I discovered there was a better microwave method. First, keep the paper towel between the plate and the pizza. That will absorb a few of the moisture. Then, change your microwave settings to be about 50% power. Instead of 30 seconds, go for a minute. A slow warm-up is always end up better than an instant nuking when it comes to pizza.
The result: Even with improvements to the methodology, the pizza still came out sort of wet and rubbery. Especially when the pizza was really good to start with, microwaving it just doesn’t do it simplyice. The crust on the finish of my slice has been so rubbery that I had to really yank on it with my teeth to eat it. The pizza was certainly still edible, but this method is not recommended unless you really only have a minute to reheat it and be on your way. If you must microwave it (say, at the office), have a paper towel handy and lower the microwave power
How exactly to Reheat Pizza in the Oven
If you’ve tried to reheat your delivery pizza (or simply tasty shipping copycats) in the oven before now, you may be shaking your head at the very idea of it. While the stove can often result in a dried-out slice of cheesy goo, there is a solution to get this right.
Step 1 1: Preheat the oven to 375ºF
It’s absolutely crucial that you allow the oven to heat up fully before you even attempt to reheat your tasty pizza. The very last thing you want is for the pizza get slowly warmer and warmer.
Step 2 2: Line a baking tray with foil
Line a baking tray with foil (or try this pizza pan from Taste of Home’s new line of bakeware) and pop it in the oven for a couple minutes. The idea is to get the tray and foil piping hot before it touches the pizza.
Step three 3: Put the pizza in the oven
Carefully take out the hot tray (make sure to use an oven mitt!) and place the pizza on it. Put the tray back into the stove for about 10 minutes, checking it now and then to ensure it doesn’t burn. The outcome ought to be a sizzling, tasty, crispy slice.
How to Reheat Pizza in a Grill
I was pretty excited about trying the grill. My wife makes a mean grilled pizza, so reheating some pie on the grill seemed quite natural. I set it to medium-high and let it warm up for a few minutes. I threw it right on the grate, no oil or anything, and let it cook for 6 minutes or so. I lifted the pizza to make sure the crust looked good (which it did), and made sure the cheese was bubbly on top (it was), and pulled it off to enjoy.
The result: Boy was this method a winner! The cheese was melty, but not rubbery. The pepperoni was crisp. The bottom crust had some awesome grill marks and the perfect amount of char. And the end crust was crunchy and delicious. On a nice day, this method is probably your best bet. The only downside is that while possible to do in poor weather (we are men, after all), it’s not the most convenient or pleasant.
How to Reheat Pizza in a Skillet
In the event that you don’t want to use the oven, there’s another, slightly quicker way to reheat your pizza. You can use a skillet-yep, exactly the same one you use for those tasty skillet dinners! It may sound just a little odd, but many people swear by this technique of reheating. Here’s what you should do:
Step 1 1: Heat the pizza in the skillet
Work with a nonstick skillet (we’ve got you covered with cookware, too) and stick it on medium heat. Place the cold slice of pizza directly onto the skillet and heat it for just a couple of minutes.
Step 2 2: Add a couple of drops of water
Next, put in a couple of drops of water to the pan’s base. Make sure that the drops are to the side of the pizza. (You don’t want them along with the slice!)
Step three 3: Cover the skillet
Put the lid along with the pan and continue to heat the pizza for an additional couple of minutes. The idea is that the skillet steams up and melts the cheese. Finally, take the slice from the pan and revel in the melted cheese and crcan bepy base. Yum!
Of course, there are plenty of cold pizza lovers on the market, too, but for your folks looking to recreate that fresh pizza taste, this can get you there!
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