Skip to Content

Should You Defrost Pizza Before Cooking? (Food Hacks Explained)

Should You Defrost Pizza Before Cooking? (Food Hacks Explained)

Most people will just put their frozen pizza in the oven, bake it, and then eat it. After all, that’s the way it should be done!

But did you know that you can significantly improve the quality and taste of your regular frozen pizza by defrosting it before putting it in the oven?

Defrosting your frozen pizza before baking will put a lot of moisture back into the pizza, resulting in a better crust, bottom, and overall taste. Letting it thaw will only take 30 to 60 minutes and take your pizza to a new level. 

Read on to learn about all the benefits of defrosting frozen pizza and how long you should let it thaw and bake in the oven.

Is it Okay to Defrost Frozen Pizza Before Cooking?

While it’s perfectly fine to put your frozen pizza from the freezer directly in the oven, you can absolutely defrost it before cooking if you want to.

Frozen pizza brands generally advise against defrosting your pizza, but that mainly concerns food safety.

And while it’s a good and important point, you generally don’t have to worry about food safety and your health if you let your frozen pizza thaw the right way! (Read more on this further down in the article)

But why would you want to defrost frozen pizza? After all, isn’t it supposed to be fast and convenient?

It certainly is! But if you’ve got a little extra time, defrosting your frozen pizza before putting it in the oven holds many advantages!

Is it Better to Cook Pizza Frozen or Thawed?

two freshly baked frozen pizzas

Even though frozen pizza doesn’t need to be defrosted before putting it in the oven, and many people don’t do it, cooking it thawed rather than in its frozen state will produce a better pizza.

Here is why:

Your pizza won’t be as dry

All the pizza’s moisture sits on top of it while frozen. That’s all the ice crystals you’ll typically see on your pizza in the freezer.

If you bake it as is, the moisture on top will quickly evaporate.

On the other hand, if you let it thaw, all that moisture will get back into your pizza, making it much juicier and tastier when it comes out of the oven!

You will get the perfect crust

Personally, I don’t like my pizza crust and bottom to be super dry and hard!

Unfortunately, that’s usually what you get when baking a frozen pizza straight out of the freezer. 

Again, the moisture plays a vital role here, as it’ll reactivate your crust and make it complete; soft on the inside and crunchy on the outside. Yummy!

Your pizza will taste better

Believe me when I tell you, a thawed frozen pizza will taste so much better!

Frozen pizza can have a very basic and dull flavor.

Defrosting your frozen pizza can bring a lot of flavor back into it. With some brands, you can even expect a pizza that’s very close to one baked at a restaurant. It can make that much of a difference!

Of course, this will depend on the brand you choose.

And again, if you don’t have that extra time or are okay with a regular frozen pizza, there’s nothing wrong with that.

But if you want to invest that little extra time to enhance your frozen pizza, be sure to keep on reading!

RELATED ARTICLE: 5 Tips on How to Keep Pizza Crust Soft

How Long Should Frozen Pizza Thaw?

two frozen pizzas thawing at room temperature for 30 minutes in the kitchen

Alright, so I have convinced you to defrost your frozen pizza. But how long should you let it thaw?

I have tried this out many times and found that the optimal thawing time is between 30 and 60 minutes.

In other words, all you need for your upgraded frozen pizza is about half an hour extra before you cook it!

This time frame ensures that your pizza is almost completely thawed and has just enough moisture in it.

Some people put it in the fridge to thaw overnight, but defrosting it for such a long time often results in a soggy pizza, as it’ll have absorbed too much moisture.

So, 30 to 60 minutes isn’t such a long time, is it? And if you can spare that extra half an hour or so, you should try it!

RELATED ARTICLE: How Long Can You Keep Pizza in the Freezer?

Can You Defrost Frozen Pizza in the Microwave?

You can certainly defrost your frozen pizza in the microwave. It’ll reduce the thawing time before baking it in the oven and can still produce okay results.

However, using this shortcut isn’t the same as letting it thaw for those 30 to 60 minutes.

That’s because microwaving your frozen pizza will eliminate most of its moisture.

And so, while you will undoubtedly get a defrosted pizza in no time, you will most likely still end up with a dry and hard pizza once it comes out of the oven.

How Long Should You Cook Thawed Frozen Pizza?

a defrosted frozen pizza baking in the oven

Your frozen pizza is now thawed and ready for the oven. Should you still follow the cooking instructions on the packaging, or have things changed?

Your thawed pizza will undoubtedly cook faster than if it had remained frozen, so you can disregard the cooking instructions’ time suggestions.

How long you will have to cook it will remain on the brand and type of frozen pizza!

Generally speaking, it’ll need about 2/3 of the time needed to cook a fully frozen pizza. If you cook it at the suggested oven temperature of about 425 to 450F, that is!

For most frozen pizza brands, that’s somewhere between 8 and 12 minutes. But once again, this will depend on the pizza you’ve bought!

The best and easiest thing to do is keep an eye on your pizza. Once it starts to brown and the cheese is bubbling, it’s time to take it out.

PRO TIP: If you have a pizza stone, you can bake your thawed frozen pizza on that instead. It’ll make for an even nicer and tastier pizza!

Related Articles