When planning the menu for your next camping trip, you should consider having pizza. And I am not saying you should check out the closest take-out restaurant.
You can enjoy that delicious brick oven taste without leaving the campground by following a few easy steps.
You will need to obtain a large 16” brick and 2 cinder blocks from your local hardware store to create an oven. Once heated by the campfire, the brick holds its heat for a long period of time.
Placing the dough directly on the brick will allow it to cook quickly, providing an authentic brick oven pizza flavor and is a great replacement for a pizza stone or steel.
Prepping the Brick
Use a mild dish detergent to scrub the brick, and rinse it thoroughly, especially if this is the first time it is going to be used. Scrub vigorously with a soap pad to ensure that any extraneous dirt from the hardware store is washed away. After each use, always make sure that the brick is completely cleaned and rinsed.
Assembling The Oven
To assemble a sturdy campfire oven, you will need:
- 2 small tower cinder blocks
- 1 16” square patio brick
About two hours before you are ready to start preparing your meal, start the campfire. Place one of the cinder blocks near the fire and rest the 16” brick vertically against it so that the flat, smooth bottom is facing the fire. Heating the stone in this way will reduce the amount of time it will take to get the stone hot for cooking later.
If you do not want to move the 16” brick later (it will be heavy and hot), you can skip this step, and simply build a fire under the stone. However, depending on the weather, it may take an hour or more of intense heat for the stone to be hot enough to cook on.
About a half hour before you are ready to cook, scoop up a small amount of coals with a shovel and start a small fire at the edge of your campfire ring. Place a cinder block on either side of the fire about 15” to 16” apart.
Using a pair of heat resistant gloves, quickly and carefully place the 16” brick on top of the cinder blocks so that the corners are securely placed on top, and so that the 16” brick does not move.
Make sure there is no wobble or instability at all. Keep a strong flame burning under the stone until a small amount of water placed in the center bubbles and sizzles.
Making the Pizza
- 1 ball pizza dough
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1/2 cup tomato sauce
- Fresh or dried basil
- Fresh tomato sliced thin
- Pepperoni sliced thin
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 Tbsp cornmeal
- vegetable oil as needed
- Gently stretch the ball of dough into a thin layer and lay out on a pizza tin. Pour 2 to 3 tbsp on the 16” brick and rub into the stone with a paper towel. Quickly flip the dough onto the hot stone, spread and flatten into a thin round crust.
- Allow to cook 5 to 6 minutes
- Drizzle the olive oil on the dough and sprinkle with cornmeal.
- Slide the tin underneath and quickly flip the dough over.
- Allow to cook 3 to 4 more minutes. Dough should be stiff enough to slide onto the tin, but not cooked through.
- Remove the tin and bring the dough to your prep area.
- Spread tomato sauce on the dough leaving a 3⁄4 inch edge without sauce.
- Sprinkle with basil to taste.
- Add sliced tomato, evenly spaced on the top of the sauce.
- Spread mozzarella cheese over the sauce and tomatoes. If you want to, add pepperoni evenly spaced on top of cheese.
- Slide the pizza back onto the brick, removing the pizza tin. Turn the tin over and place on top of the pie to help trap in the heat and cook the cheese.
- Continue cooking the pizza for 8 to 12 minutes until the bottom crust is toasted brown and cheese is completely melted. If any edge is too puffy or doughy, simply press flat with fingers or a fork.
- Slide the tin under the pie, and remove from heat.
- Cut and serve.
We have enjoyed a variety of campfire pizzas in our backyard and on many camping trips. Our family has experimented with toppings and spices to create a plethora of gourmet style pies.
The kids love this recipe so much that my son has made this meal a few times on Boy Scout campouts. The scouts have so much fun customizing the pies. In fact, last time they enjoyed crumbling bacon on top.
You can also make the dough thicker and stick it in one of your cast iron pans for a deep dish version.
And if your friends or family have a gluten intolerance, try our gluten-free zucchini pizza for a healthy, fresh alternative!
How about a little late-night campfire reading? If you’re pondering the thought of a life without pizza, or wondering what it would be like to pine away for your favorite comfort foods among the stars, as an astronaut out in space, check out Allison’s post, “What’s Cooking? Space Food and the Gastronaut Question.”
Have fun and enjoy!
About Jennifer Swartvagher
Jennifer is an experienced journalist and author. Her work has been featured on TODAY Parents, The New York Times Blog, BlogHer, Scary Mommy, and scores of other parenting and cooking publications.
32 thoughts on “Enjoy A Night Under The Stars With Campfire Pizza”
I love making homemade pizzas. Also the picture you used with the thin crust pizza is just mouthwatering. I love thin crust and I’m planning to make exactly just that.
Nice idea for camping and to build your own oven. I think it would be great for summer camps and groups. I like deep pan version so I would have that. It may take more time to set up, but there is less washing up to do as there are no plates required.
A pizza made on a campfire. That’s ingenious. Will definitely have to try it out next time I go camping. One suggestion though, you can actually put oil IN the pan and then cook the pie. The crust would be deep fried in that oil and it always comes out super crispy and delicious. Pizzahut in my country does this with their pizzas and people love it.
That’s a fantastic idea. I camp out often in the warmer months and am always on the lookout for new meal options. In fact, I could even set this up in my back yard. Thanks for the inspiration!
I wish this was something I could do at home! Unfortunately, where I live we are legally not allowed to have open fires in our backyard. This is something I will have to try when I go camping this summer. I’m even growing most of the veggies involved in my garden, so I will have to make this recipe using my homegrown ingredients. The only thing that I think I would do differently would be to actually make the pizza dough from scratch. Even if pizza dough seems like a lot of work, no knead pizza dough is the answer for you! It can be made in bulk and stored in the fridge or frozen for when you need it. Its so simple and there really is no kneading involved! Just mix the ingredients and wait!
I love this idea. The only thing that seems to be stopping me is the brick. Does anyone have a suggestion as to where I can pick one up for this type of thing?
We purchased our brick at Lowes. You can find one at any hardware store.
This sounds so good! The quality of restaurant pizza gets worse by the year it seems. I can’t even order it anymore… And I miss it so bad! I’m curious as to wether or not I can make this work in a wood stove. I’ll let you know how it turns out. Wish me luck!
Can’t wait to hear how it turns out.
This is such a great idea. I have never imagined cooking pizza in the outdoors, but this could turn camping into glamping. I wonder if I could attempt it in my own backyard with the kids. Are there any safety concerns?
We make pizza in our backyard with the kids. Just make sure the little ones know to stand back from the fire, and you should be fine.
what a great idea, never thought of having a campfire pizza before, so may be worth giving a go!
I think I would be scared of it burning really fast without a clear heat measure! But this would be great if you went with a large group of friends!
I love this idea; we are always looking for recipes to make outdoors. Even when we aren’t camping we like to cook over our firepit in our backyard. For this recipe, did you cook over a traditional wood campfire? I know I’ve seen several recipes that were labelled as campfire recipes but were actually cooked over coals.
We used a traditional wood campfire to make our pizza.
I have a pizza oven at home and it honestly tastes much better than the pizzas at restaurants.
It may be that I add some of my favorite ingredients that make them much tastier, but also that the oven is preparing them very nice.
Thanks for the recipe, might try it later!
Just reporting back to say that I tried this out at the weekend, during a rare spell of hot weather and it turned out perfectly! It was delicious and so easy to make. I just used good old ham and mushrooms as a topping. I’d recommend giving it a try!
I love camping, and doing something like this would make it an even bigger adventure! Seriously, just reading it has brought out the kid in me. I can’t wait to try it when we go camping this June; there’s six adults and four children – or probably 10 children once we get going with this this idea!!
Thank you so much for sharing.
Welp. I know what to do with the rarely-used fire pit in my backyard now. I’ve been incredibly spoiled by a couple of places that make some awesome wood-fired pizzas. I will definitely have to try this out when the weather improves.
I’ll be going camping with a few of my friends soon and we were making a list of all the kinds of food we could prepare there. I can honestly tell you we could never have thought of pulling off a pizza on a campfire. Your pictures of that beautiful thin crust camp-fire pizza have completely changed my mind and I am going to make sure we attempt to recreate this delicious recipe. I just hope we can come close!
If you can reply could you please tell me any other precautions you took to prevent burning your hand etc while you were manipulating the pizza and all the other tools? Thanks.
This is such an ingenious idea! I’ve never thought twice while prepping for the general campfire food of hot dogs, buns, and condiments; it’s always seemed like the easiest food to make over a fire. I’ll be sure to switch up the menu and try this the next time I go camping. Would ACE Hardware happen to carry this sized brick (or Walmart for that matter)?
Why does this look so good? The comfort food, hard to resist. I like the small tomatoes. I never thought of that. Great flavor to add. I think the olive oil is enough. I’ve used walnut oil that makes everything taste amazing. Thanks for this one it’s making want to have some now. Lol.
This is such a brilliant idea to have an excellent camping meal! My dad has been wanting to try something new when we went camping, and now we have an idea that can satisfy the whole group in one go!
I make homemade pizza, and they are so good. I have a bread maker so I make the dough in it so it’s really super tasty. I wish my husband and I did camp out because I would love to try this I know it would be fun, and yummy too.
I enjoy reading this very much. You are always full of creative knowledge! This is a great idea and I’ll have to try it out when I go camping next time. For the fire would the time vary if we are using different type of dough? Like say for example whole wheat? Also if we were to do this in our backyard, could we replace the 16″ brick with a large flower pot? I’ve seen some people use it as a BBQ successfully.
The type of dough should not matter. A terracotta flower pot would work very well. Just be mindful that the thinner material may be more prone to cracking.
Hah, I never thought setting up a campfire for a pizza would be that easy. I’m going to try this tonight and report back with the results. I was planning on ordering some Chipotle but I guess making my own makes more sense! 😀
This sounds like such a fun idea! I love making home made dough for my pizza, I usually make it for my boyfriend and myself every couple weeks. We live in an apartment so we don’t have anywhere to do this at home but my parents have a fire pit in their back yard and and they’ve been thinking of building a pizza oven. This sounds like a great idea to try in the meantime, especially since our area is having such beautiful weather this year. Cooking and dining outside is so much fun, especially when you can make something delicious like pizza!
I must admit I have never though of making pizza outdoors. This is such a great idea and can even be done on the barbecue. I am certainly going to do this with my family. I know they will love it as its going to give the barbecue a new twist. We don’t really do much camping.
I got so excited when I saw this! Since I love both camping and cooking, I am making a hobby of learning to make really delicious camping food. It’s so much more fun and interesting than preparing PB&Js every day. Last time, we made stir fry vegetables and grilled fish. Next time, I’m definitely trying this pizza recipe. Keep the camping dishes coming!
This is a very fun and interesting idea, and would make for great easy pizza! I had never thought about doing this on a camping trip but I definitely plan on trying it now. I can see this bringing in the other campers around us too, and that’s part of the fun of camping. I think I would rather do it in the way where you place the fire directly under the brick, and perhaps trial and error will help me figure out how to do that the best.
I My mouth started to water as soon as I saw this recipe. I have a question though, can you recreate this recipe on a charcoal grill. I can’t make a camp fire where I love currently, but am allowed to have a grill. I would love to get some nice smoky flavor on a pizza. The oven just doesn’t cut it sometimes.
YES! We have made this before, on our last camping trip actually. We brought all the things needed, and had the dough prepared already. It was so easy to throw it all together when needed. Turned out great too, nothing like we expected. It was crispy and fabulous!!