Strictly speaking, the Ninja Woodfire 8-1 Outdoor Oven isn’t really a “pizza oven” in form or function. And despite having “Woodfire” in the name, it isn’t even a wood-fired oven—it actually runs on electricity.
Despite this, I would argue that the Ninja Woodfire oven makes pizza better than any non-dedicated pizza oven I’ve ever used. It even comes with a pizza stone included, which tells you what the designers were thinking when they made it.
That said, the Ninja Woodfire will never be able to compete with a dedicated pizza oven for a number of reasons. For starters, it only reaches 700F at a maximum, which is below the ideal Neapolitan threshold by a good hundred 100° or so.
700F might be more than hot enough for New York or New Haven style, but with only a 12 inch baking surface, The Ninja Woodfire isn’t ideal for these styles, either. No big floppy New York slices in this oven.
After reviewing this unit for several weeks, we can safely say that the Ninja Woodfire is best suited for those looking to cook more than just pizza in their oven. But serious pizza makers should look to Ooni or Roccbox if they want real pizzeria quality pizza at home.
All in all, the Ninja Woodfire is a great oven with great design and good build-quality—it’s just not a true pizza oven. It’s basically a step up from a regular home oven, and a step below a pizza oven.
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Ninja Woodfire 8-1 Oven: Quick Facts
|Specification||Ninja Woodfire 8-1 Outdoor Oven|
|Baking Surface Size||12 inches|
|Fuel Types||Electric with optional wood pellets for flavor|
|Max Pizza Size||12-inch pizza|
|Pizza Stone Type||Cordierite ceramic|
Ninja Woodfire Oven Design and Appearance
Let’s get right into the look and feel of this oven. First off, the Ninja Woodfire Outdoor Oven’s design definitely catches the eye. It basically looks like a colorful toaster oven with a matte finish. I say this in a good way—I like the way it looks!
Its compact square shape makes The Ninja Woodfire a decent fit for most patios or backyards, without it overwhelming the space. And for those who like a bit of customization, there are a few color options to choose from.
So, if you’re particular about matching your outdoor decor or just want something that stands out, this oven should fit the bill nicely.
Material and Build Quality Analysis
Now, onto the nitty-gritty: the material and build quality. It’s all well and good having an oven that looks the part, but how does it hold up?
The Ninja Woodfire Outdoor Oven is constructed with weather proof stainless steel and aluminum and contained within a durable plastic matte shell.
Despite the plastic materials, the build quality actually feels quite solid, so don’t expect it to break or give up on you after using it for a while. However, like with any outdoor appliance, it’s worth thinking about how it might fare in extreme weather conditions before you start using it in a snowstorm.
That said, plastic isn’t something you expect on an oven that costs $300-$400. It works just fine, and it will hold up to the elements, but if you were expecting something with a stainless steel powder coated finish like an Ooni or Roccbox, you’re out of luck.
Ninja Woodfire Oven Technical Specifications
|Functionality||8-in-1: Pizza, Max Roast, Specialty Roast, Broil, Bake, Smoker, Dehydrate, Keep Warm|
|Capacity||Up to 12-lb turkey, 9-lb pork shoulder, 12-inch pizza, full sheet-pan meal, 8×11 casserole dish|
|Pizza Settings||Neapolitan, Thin Crust, Pan, New York, Frozen|
|BBQ Capability||2 racks of ribs, 8-lb chicken, 9-lb pork shoulder|
|Woodfire Flavor||Capability to add woodfire flavor with 1/2 cup of pellets up to 700°F|
|Outdoor Cooking Efficiency||Uses electric heat; designed for year-round outdoor use|
|Included Accessories||Pro-Heat Pan, Pizza Stone, Roast Rack, Accessory Frame, Pellet Scoop, All-Purpose Blend Starter Pack|
Dimensions, Weight, and Capacity
The Ninja Woodfire Outdoor Oven has been designed with practicality in mind. It offers a decent 12 inch cooking space, suitable for lots of different dishes including pizza. It also doesn’t take up too much room in your outdoor cooking area.
The Ninja Woodfire oven weighs 32 pounds, which is fairly light, but it still has a nice hefty feel to it (which I like). It’s also no problem to quickly move from one area to another, unlike heavier pizza ovens like the Alfa Nano.
Temperature Range and Heating Time
One of the critical aspects of any oven is its temperature range. The Ninja Woodfire Outdoor Oven provides a broad range from 105-700°F. This range allows for lots of cooking options, from slow-cooking meats and vegetables to a crispy pizza crust.
The Ninja Woodfire Oven heats up to 700F in about 25 minutes, which isn’t particularly fast for such a low temperature. That said, I don’t put a lot of emphasis on how long an oven takes to preheat if the results are good. More on that later.
I’ll also add that 700F max temperature is quite low for a pizza oven, even an electric one. By comparison, other electric pizza ovens, like the Breville Pizzaiolo, reaches 750F while the Ooni Volt can hit 850F.
That said, the Ninja Woodfire is an 8-1 oven that isn’t exclusively designed for pizza, and I appreciate that. Just be aware that if you want an oven that’s exclusively designed for pizza, the Ninja Woodfire isn’t for you.
Ninja Woodfire Oven Setup Process
Setting Up the Ninja Woodfire Oven
Alright, let’s talk about setting this bad boy up. Thankfully, the installation process for this oven is pretty straightforward.
To setup the Ninja Woodfire, all you have to do is take it out of the box, wipe out the interior with a cloth, plug it in, and you’re ready to go. The oven also includes a box where you can insert wood pellets to add a smoky flavor to your pizza, which is a nice touch for an electric oven.
Equipment or Accessories Needed
While the Ninja Woodfire comes with most of the essentials, depending on your cooking plans, you might want to invest in a few extras.
For example, if you want to use the Nina Woodfire as a pizza oven, you’ll need to buy a pizza peel. You can buy one with your order directly from Ninja for $29.99, or you can use your own if you already have one (as long as it’s not larger than 12 inches and fits in the opening of the oven).
Ninja Woodfire Oven Performance
In our testing, the Ninja Woodfire works extremely well for an oven that only hits 700F at the maximum. With the included pizza stone, you can make great New York or New Haven style pizza, as long as you’re content with it being only 12 inches big.
That said, is the Ninja Woodfire a major improvement over what your regular home oven can achieve with a pizza steel? I’m not so sure that it is.
A pizza steel in a regular home oven can easily make great New York or New Haven style pizza of any size. You can also make Neapolitan style, albeit you won’t get the same leopard spotting on the crust. This isn’t that different from what we were able to get using the Ninja Woodfire.
Ideally, a pizza oven should be able to hit at least 800-900F. This is the sweet spot that will allow you to cook any style of pizza with great results.
But the Ninja Woodfire is still great at making pizza, it’s just not a dedicated pizza oven. So, if you’re looking for an oven to cook lots of different dishes including pizza, this is a great option.
On the other hand, if you’re looking for a pizza oven that will work as well as an Ooni, the Ninja Woodfire is not ideal.
Heating Efficiency and Cooking Time
The Ninja Woodfire Oven has impressive heating efficiency, and we didn’t notice much of a drop in the temperature between making pizzas. We used an infrared thermometer to test this along with the built-in thermostat.
Unfortunately, the Ninja Woodfire doesn’t include a viewing window or hole in the door so you can see how your pizza is turning out. This is clearly part of why this oven retains heat so well, but as soon as you open the door to check your food, the temperature drops. So, it’s a tradeoff.
At the maximum 700F temperature, we were able to cook a decent (but not perfect) Neapolitan style pizza in about 6-7 minutes. Then, we turned down the temperature to around 600F and cooked a New Haven style pizza in just under 10 minutes. This is about exactly what we expected given the tech specs of the oven.
Wood Pellet “Smoker” Adds A Nice Touch
One of the drawbacks to using an electric or gas pizza oven is that you don’t get the nice smoky flavor that comes with wood. The Ninja Woodfire attempts to give you the best of both worlds by including a “smoker” box on the side of the unit.
We used this feature while cooking our Neapolitan pizza, and while the crust was far from perfect due to the low temperature, it did have a hint of a smoky flavor. It’s never going to replace my Ooni Karu 12G or Roccbox, but if you don’t own a pizza oven it’s a nice feature to have.
The Ninja Woodfire Isn’t Just For Making Pizza
I just want to reiterate this point in case I haven’t made it clear. The Ninja Woodfire is designed with making pizza in mind (hence the included pizza stone), but it’s not a “pizza oven”, per se. A real portable pizza oven can reach higher temperatures and generally has a smaller chamber to intensify the heat.
That said, the Ninja Woodfire is much more versatile than a pizza oven, so if you’re looking to make several different dishes (including pizza) using a single appliance, this oven is the way to go.
Ninja Woodfire Oven Pros and Cons
Advantages and Disadvantages of the Ninja Woodfire Oven
- Versatility: The 8-in-1 functionality of the Ninja Woodfire Outdoor Oven let’s you grill, smoke, roast, bake, and more, making it a multifunctional tool for various cooking needs.
- Precise temperature controls.
- Built-in presets make it easy for beginners to use to make various dishes and styles of pizza.
- Decent airflow considering the size and shape of the oven chamber.
- Relatively compact Design
- Low maximum temperature (700F) makes it not ideal for Neapolitan style pizza.
- Small 12 inch baking surface makes it not ideal for New York and New Haven style, despite the lower temperature.
- Good at most things, great at none. It’s a “jack of all trades” oven, similar to a regular home oven.
Ninja Woodfire Oven Price and Availability
|Specification||Ninja Woodfire Oven||Ooni Volt 12||Breville Pizzaiolo|
|Max pizza size||12 inches||12 inches||12 inches|
|Weight||32 pounds||39.2 pounds||45.6 pounds|
|Fuel Types||Electric with optional wood pellets for flavor||All-electric (indoor/outdoor use)||All-electric (countertop)|
|Dimensions||21.5 x 18 x 15.1||24.2 x 20.8 x 10.9 inches||18.1″ x 18.5″ x 10.6″|
|Design/Construction Material||Stainless steel, plastic exterior shell||stainless steel||Stainless steel|
|Preheating Time||25 minutes||20 minutes||15 minutes|
|Warranty Period||1-year limited||1-year (2 years if registered)||2-year limited|
The Ninja Woodfire isn’t the most expensive “pizza oven” out there, but considering its limitations it isn’t cheap either.
If we compare the Ninja Woodfire to other electric pizza ovens, like the Breville Pizzaiolo or the Ooni Volt 12, the Woodfire is much less expensive ($399 vs $999). However, both the Breville and Ooni are superior at making pizza due to their very different designs, and you can see it in the results.
On the other hand, the Ninja Woodfire has the ability to “smoke” using wood pellets, which can add a nice flavor to the crust that Breville and the Ooni Volt 12 can’t match. It’s still not a deal breaker, though.
That said, the Ninja Woodfire can cook more than just pizza, so it really depends on what you’re looking for.
If you want the best pizza oven (electric or otherwise), the Ninja Woodfire isn’t the best choice. But if you want a multi-function oven that can make very tasty (but not perfect) pizza, then it might be your best bet.
Ninja Woodfire Alternatives
I keep talking about dedicated pizza ovens that make better pizza than the Ninja Woodfire, so it’s only fair that I mention them here.
For the same price ($399) you can buy the Ooni Koda 12 propane pizza oven which can easily hit temperatures up to 950F. This is more than enough to make a perfect Neapolitan pizza in only under 90 seconds.
And then there’s the Ooni Koda 16 at only $599, which can make a perfect 16 inch New York style pizza in just a few minutes. While the temperature of the Ninja Woodfire is great for New York (or New Haven) style, at only 12 inches it really can’t do it justice.
If you want a fully featured, 16 inch pizza oven, look no further than the Ooni Karu 16. This pizza oven can make large New York style pizza under a low propane flame, or you can switch to wood and make an authentic Neapolitan pizza. When I think “portable pizza oven”, this is the oven that immediately comes to my mind.
After diving into the Ninja Woodfire 8-1 Outdoor Oven, it’s clear that this oven offers a unique blend of versatility and functionality.
While it may not be the top choice for die-hard pizza makers seeking that perfect Neapolitan crust, its 8-in-1 capabilities make it a solid choice for those wanting a multifunctional outdoor cooking appliance.
Its design, build quality, and features are all great, but you have to weigh its pros and cons based on your specific needs. Whether you’re a pizza purist or someone looking for a jack-of-all-trades oven, it’s all about finding the right fit.
If you want a dedicated pizza oven, I’d check out Ooni or Roccbox over the Ninja Woodfire.
- Versatile 8-in-1 functionality suitable for various dishes.
- Precise temperature controls with a range of 105-700°F.
- Compact design suitable for most outdoor spaces.
- Offers a unique wood pellet “smoker” feature for added flavor.
- Priced reasonably compared to other electric pizza ovens but has its limitations.
- Ideal for those seeking a multifunctional oven rather than a dedicated pizza oven.
Can the Ninja Woodfire Oven be used indoors or is it strictly an outdoor appliance?
The Ninja Woodfire Oven is designed primarily for outdoor use. While it offers electric heating and has a compact design, it’s essential to ensure proper ventilation when using any wood-fired appliance. Using it indoors could lead to smoke and potential safety hazards. Always refer to the manufacturer’s guidelines and use the oven in open spaces to ensure safety and optimal performance.
How does the Ninja Woodfire Oven’s cleaning and maintenance compare to other outdoor ovens?
Cleaning and maintaining the Ninja Woodfire Oven is relatively straightforward. Given its electric nature and the option to use wood pellets, there’s less ash residue compared to traditional wood-fired ovens. However, like all outdoor appliances, it’s recommended to regularly check for any debris, clean the interior after use, and consider using a protective cover when not in use to prolong its lifespan and maintain its appearance. Always refer to the user manual for specific cleaning instructions and recommendations.