Ooni 3 on a table outdoor
Outdoor Pizza Ovens Pizza Ovens

Ooni 3: A Wood-powered Outdoor Pizza Oven Review

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The Ooni 3 is one of Ooni’s oldest outdoor pizza ovens. Predecessor of the Ooni Frya 12, the model was one Ooni’s best products. Though many models have succeeded this, no model has come close to how popular the Ooni 3 was.

front side view of ooni 3
front side view of ooni 3

Front-side View of Ooni 3

side view of ooni 3

Side View of Ooni 3

rear view of ooni 3

Rear View of Ooni 3

Ooni 3 was one of the most economical outdoor pizza ovens of its time providing one of the best price to performance ratios.

Did the Ooni 3 deserve the fame it got or was it overhyped? I’ll let you be the judge of that after going through this article.

Here’s an in-depth review of the wood-powered Uuni 3:

A Pre-rebranding Model

The company changed its name from Uuni to Ooni in July 2018. The Uuni 3 is one of those ovens that were released before the rebranding of the company.

Although three years isn’t that long a time, it’s still a considerable time. Despite being three-year-old, the Uuni 3 serves well to date.

In fact, the Uuni 3 is one of the best budget outdoor pizza ovens. You’ll see why.

Build Quality

Being made of stainless steel, the oven feels strong and sturdy. Because it is not made up of carbon (like the Ooni Koda 12), it feels a bit less solid than the carbon ones.

All in all, the oven gives a premium feel. Upon one close look, one can easily tell this is a well-produced product.

Portability

Even though the oven is made up of steel instead of carbon, it’s still pretty light in weight. The Uuni 3 is one of the lightest wood-powered pizza ovens weighing 12 kg.

The oven has different parts that can be disassembled easily. Breaking the oven up into smaller parts helps a lot with transportation.

The chimney, like that of other models except the Ooni Karu 12, is a long one. That is the only thing that might disturb you.

I would suggest you get the Uuni 3 Carry Cover. Not only will it make carrying the oven around easier but it will also prevent the oven from accumulating dust when not in dust.

carry cover of ooni 3

Efficiency: Lowest Pre-heat Time

This is a strong point of this oven. The Uuni 3 takes just 10 minutes to pre-heat to around 500 degrees Celsius (932 degrees Fahrenheit). Most ovens take around 15 minutes while some take even up to 20 minutes.

This time is when heated from scratch. If you’re looking for the shortest pre-heat time, this is the oven for you.

However, you will have to keep the oven topped with the wooden pellets (I’ll get into this in the later section). Otherwise, the temperature will drop, and the pre-heat time will be more than 10 minutes.

Fuel Source

The Uuni 3 is a wood-powered outdoor pizza oven. It uses special hardwood pellets as its fuel source.

Ooni oak wood pellets as a pizza accessory

Because the fuel source is wood, you can cook authentic flavoured pizzas. Whether you use normal wood or the provided wood pellets, you will get almost the same rich flavour – different from that of normal fast-food pizzas.

The air intake is at the back. The chimney further allows the air to be sucked in. Because of these two things, you don’t have to worry about the fire dying out.

Normal Wood vs. Hardwood Pellets

Normal wood can also be used. However, I would not recommend using normal wood instead of the special wooden pellets because of several reasons.

Firstly, the wood pellets leave minimum ash. Secondly, the smoke produced is less and isn’t irritating. Lastly, wood pellets will last much longer than wood of the same weight will. This is because the wood pellets are quite dense – denser than normal wood is.

Wood Pellets Efficiency

Because the pellets are quite dense, they’re quite effective. 1 kg of hardwood pellets can last for 3-4 hours of consistent use.

One bag has 3 kg of hardwood pellets. A 3g hardwood pellets bag can last for 8-12 hours and costs roughly $25. For under $30, you can power your Uuni 3 for eight to twelve hours.

You can get Ooni’s hardwood pellets from here.

Ooni oak wood pellet pack

Image Source: Ooni

Heat Consistency

Keeping the oven topped up with the pellets is extremely important. If you run out of fuel, the temperature will drop. Consequently, the oven will take more time to pre-heat.

Not keeping the oven topped up with the fuel source will also lead to non-uniform heat distribution because of which the pizza won’t be cooked evenly.

Make sure not to let the fuel end. This is the simplest way to avoid uneven heat distribution.

Pizza Flavour

The Ooni 3 is a wood-powered outdoor pizza oven. Cooking pizzas from wood will give your pizzas an authentic BBQ-styled flavour.

Wood-powered ovens cannot give you the same taste as fast-food pizza ovens. So, if you’re looking for a budget outdoor pizza oven that can give you authentic tase, this is a good choice. Its successor, the Oony Frya 12, is also a good option if you’re going to be switching back and forth between different fuel sources.

Pricing

The oven is under $500. Because it’s rare to find a new Ooni 3, you’ll get it for much cheaper than $500. For $500, the oven is one of the best provided how quickly it heats up.

The price to performance ratio is great but not one of the best. I feel like the oven should cost less since it isn’t a multi-fuel oven.

Bottom Line

All in all, the Ooni 3 is a great budget wood-powered outdoor pizza oven. Pre-heating to 500 degrees Celsius in 10 minutes, the oven can cook stones pizzas in around a minute.

The Uuni 3 is a good choice for people looking for a wood-powered pizza oven at a low price tag. The build quality is excellent, and the oven will last for many years if taken proper care of.

However, the model is really hard to find. If you can’t find it, I would suggest using the Ooni Koda 12 as its alternate.

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