A Clay Oven Cook’s Tools

There are several tools needed to cook with a clay oven. Lets get straight to it.

Pizza paddles

These funny spade looking things are for transporting your yummy pizzas in and out of a hot oven. You would do with just one paddle but I made two (also the handles really don’t need to be that long – half the length is fine). The larger one is for making the pizza on and putting uncooked pizzas into the oven. The smaller one is for taking the cooked pizzas out, while people can keep making another pizza on the larger one. It is important to put the rolled pizza base onto the well floured large pizza paddle before toppings go on the pizza base. Otherwise the topping loadded pizzas are too hard to transport onto the paddle without ruining the beautifully topped pizza.

Both paddles in action

You should really try to see if you can make these yourself with some stainless steel or aluminium sheet metal. The prices I’ve seen for these in the shops are daylight robbery in my opinion…


My garden hoe is dual purpose. I also use it to poke firewood in the clay oven, and emptying the oven of ember and ash. It is important to soak the hoe in a bucket of water while it’s not being used as a firewood poker to stop the wooden handle charring.


A mop is required for wiping the oven floor clean so bakings can be done straight on the oven floor. This mop serves this single purpose only and I do not use it other cleaning purpose. Soak the mop in a bucket of water before using it in the oven. Make sure you get a mop that does not have any plastic bits.

A mop and a hoe need to soak in water before use

Bucket (metal is the best option)

For soaking your hoe and mop.

Metal wheelbarrow

This is used for transporting firewood as well as taking the hot ember emptied from the oven.

Metal bristle brush

This is a good thing to have but not absolutely necessary. It’s useful when pizza topping accidentally fly off the pizza base while being shoved into the oven. In the case of such an accident, use the metal brush to push the unfortunate pizza toppings into the ember and brush the oven floor clean.

As you can see, I bought a metal bristle brush and attached it to a stick using some backyard engineering – It really doesn’t need to be fancy!

Oven thermometer

A good thing to have to save numerous loafs of brunt bread. One of the best 7 dollars I’ve invested! They say you can judge the temperature of the oven by feeling with your fist (sounds more insane than it really is), but trust me, once the temperature drops to around 250 C, a fist becomes VERY INSENSITIVE for telling how hot a oven is – and 250 C can still really burn your bread! (One day I’ll get around to tell you more about the lessons I learnt.)


6 thoughts on “A Clay Oven Cook’s Tools

    • Thanks 🙂 Perhaps you could build a clay oven and drive all the other pizzeria around you out of business 😉 It is definitely the best way to cook pizzas and have awesome parties 🙂

  1. I opened this post and burst out laughing because sitting next to me at this very instant in amongst a small mountain of bubble wrap is the freshly delivered Pizza paddle that I ordered earlier this week from a Dutch pizza maker who has a clay oven pizza business!!!
    You been reading my mind?

    Yes, ouch… it was pricey, but with no garden and no garden shed to do any tinkering around with, we reckoned that obtaining all the bits we needed, both tools and paddle parts would actually end up more expensive if we were only making one. (we only need and have room for one in our apartment anyway)

    I tried to convince Little Mr and Kiwi Daughter when I unwrapped it that I’d bought a special kid spanking tool for when they are naughty, but they didn’t buy that line as they already know we are a no hitting household and they’ve seen Himself lug the heavy unglazed street stone into the kitchen that we bought for the oven this week too, so they’ve been asking pizza making related questions and thus made the connection pretty fast.

    I’ve also already taken the precautionary step of explaining to Himself and kids that this is NOT for shovelling the snow that presently lying on the street outside..
    Mine has a shorter handle, (needed in a galley kitchen). Now I just need to get my dough recipe in order…

    Great Post (VERY helpful to see your tools) and great to see that if you have access to a few tools that it’s really possible to make your own 🙂

    • Haha! Funny about the spanking tool! You should hang it somewhere prominent in the house (and perhaps with a sign underneath!)

      It’s great to know you are really getting on with the whole baking on a stone hearth thing! Check my recipes page for my basic pizza dough recipe – everyone always asks for my recipe, but it’s really really really basic! Oh and perhaps you’d like to read the tips on it too – but I’m guessing you probably know them anyway 🙂

      My paddles really don’t need to be that long. Gets in the way a little actually. I thought about just sawing it shorter but well, I guess it hasn’t been a bother enough to actually get the saw out. I bet you miss having a Kiwi garage where all the good old backyard engineering are done 😉

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