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How To Reheat Pizza

Learn how to reheat pizza with this helpful guide! Discover the best methods, from the oven to the air fryer, so you never settle for cold pizza again.

There are right and wrong ways to reheat pizza. The correct ways yield cheesy and lightly crisp leftovers with that pleasant chew, whereas going about it wrong can yield gummy or even hard results with an off flavor. Whether dealing with a classic New York slice, your favorite deep-dish, or a few thin-crust slices, knowing how to reheat pizza correctly is necessary. Each method in this guide works every time and doesn’t require much time. Don’t you hate reheating methods that take away from the quick convenience of leftovers?

How To Reheat Pizza

Pizza Storage

Before diving into the various ways to reheat pizza, let’s talk storage because if pizza isn’t stored correctly, you might not even get to reheat it since you’ll have to throw it out. First and foremost, ensure leftover pizza is cooled to room temperature. Hot pizza in a container will cause moisture buildup, leading to a soggy crust.

Secondly, store the pizza within an hour if ordered from a restaurant or within two hours for homemade pizza. Leaving it at room temperature for too long can lead to bacterial growth, increasing the risk of foodborne illness. Once cooled, store slices in a shallow airtight container, or wrap them in foil, and place them into a freezer bag, squeezing as much air as possible before sealing. You can also just tightly wrap a slice or two in foil if you plan to reheat the pizza in a day or so.

After the pizza is in a container or wrapped, you can choose between refrigerator or freezer storage. Refrigeration is best if you eat the leftover pizza within a few days (3-4 days). For longer-term storage, freeze the pizza. When frozen, pizza will keep for 3 months, although consumption within 1-2 months is ideal to avoid losing quality.

Ways To Reheat Leftover Pizza

Now that we’ve covered pizza storage, let’s explore exactly how to reheat pizza with these methods:

Oven Reheating

Reheating leftover pizza in the oven (or toaster oven) is nearly identical to a fresh slice. The crust is crispy, the cheese is melted and gooey, and everything is heated evenly. This method works for anything from a single slice to an almost whole pie. The only drawback is that it takes slightly longer than others on this list. To reheat pizza in the oven, follow these steps:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F.
  2. Arrange the slice or slices on a large sheet of aluminum foil and transfer the foil with the slice to the center oven rack. Alternatively, you can place the slices directly on the rack if you don’t mind a little cleanup.
  3. Reheat for 8-10 minutes or until the crust is crispy and the cheese is bubbling.
  4. Enjoy.

Notes: Although placing the pizza on foil or directly onto the rack is best, you can also use a baking sheet. If you do, place it in the oven as it reheats so the sheet is nice and hot when you add the slices. That bottom crust will be incredible. Furthermore, if using a toaster oven instead of a conventional one, expect the pizza to be reheated in 5-7 minutes instead of 8-10 minutes, as they tend to reheat food more quickly.

How To Reheat Pizza In The Oven

Skillet Reheating

Reheating pizza in a skillet is the second-best method. With this method, you get a golden brown underside with piping-hot toppings. Some prefer it over the oven because skillet reheating requires less time. As for drawbacks, not much of the texture on the outer crust, especially the top, is restored, plus more monitoring is needed. Here’s how to reheat pizza in a skillet:

  1. Heat a non-stick skillet on the stovetop over medium heat.
  2. Arrange a slice (or slices) in a single layer.
  3. Cover with a lid and reheat for 4-5 minutes. You’ll know the pizza is ready when the cheese starts to bubble. If the cheese is not melting as much as you like, add a teaspoon or two of water to move things along.
  4. Uncover and reheat for another minute.
  5. Use a spatula or tongs to transfer the reheated pizza to a plate, then serve immediately.
How To Reheat Pizza On The Stove

Air Fryer Reheating

If you’re lucky enough to own an air fryer, you can use it for reheating pizza. The circulating hot air helps revive the crust’s crispiness while ensuring the toppings are heated evenly, and the appliance does all this very quickly. Unfortunately, the average air fryer can only accommodate a slice or two (unless you have a convection oven with an air fryer function). Here’s how to reheat pizza in an air fryer:

  1. Preheat your air fryer to 350°F.
  2. Place a slice of pizza or two in the air fryer basket in a single layer. If reheating two, ensure they’re not overlapping.
  3. Reheat for 3-4 minutes or until the crust is crispy and the cheese is bubbly. Total time may vary depending on the model you use.
  4. Carefully remove the pizza from the air fryer and let it cool for a minute before serving.
How To Reheat Pizza In The Air Fryer

Microwave Reheating

Yes, the microwave is often considered a no-go for reheating food because it compromises texture. Still, pizza reheated in the microwave isn’t so bad, especially when time is of the essence. It does come in last on the list because it will not produce the same level of crispiness as the oven or skillet methods, but it is still an effective way to warm up your slices. Follow these steps for microwave reheating:

  1. Arrange a slice of pizza, or multiple slices, on a microwave-safe plate in a single layer. Leave some space between each slice.
  2. Place a damp paper towel over the pizza to help prevent the crust from becoming too dry during reheating.
  3. Microwave the pizza on high power for 30-60 seconds or until the cheese is melted and the crust is warm.
  4. Carefully remove the plate from the microwave (it will be hot!), let the pizza cool, then enjoy.

Notes: This method will work for any pizza, although it works particularly well for thin crust. Thin-crust pizza tends to become quite tough in the fridge, so the moisture from the damp paper towel softens it, resulting in an ideal texture.

How To Reheat Pizza In The Microwave

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Monique McArthur
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