Pizza Warming and Holding Equipment Buyers' Guide
Whether you're running a pizza delivery business or a simple concession stand that happens to serve pizza by the slice, the right pizza warming equipment can help prepare you to offer quick and satisfying service. Here we'll help you choose from the many types of equipment designed to keep pizzas fresh, hot, and ready to eat as they make their way from the oven to your guests.
Before you start shopping, it's important to figure out how many pizzas your new equipment will need to hold and the size of the largest pie or pizza box you'll be holding. Knowing those two pieces of information will help you find the best pizza warming solution for your business.
Electric Holding Cabinets
Electric pizza holding cabinets provide solutions for holding several pizzas in a hot-and-ready state for as long as a few hours. They're the ideal solution for pizzerias that need to keep orders hot and fresh until they can be picked up, delivered, or served to dine-in guests. Equipment manufacturers often build specialized versions of their heated holding cabinets designed to hold pizza boxes.
This type of equipment comes in smaller countertop versions that accommodate a dozen or so pizzas, depending on the size of each. Lighter versions of these half-size pizza holding cabinets are equipped with handles to they can be picked up and relocated or placed on a cart for transportation.
Full-size electric pizza warming cabinets have capacities for two or three dozen pizzas. These larger cabinets are generally mounted on casters so they can easily be wheeled from one place to another. Electric pizza cabinets keep pizza hot via heating elements, and many are insulated so they can maintain serving temperatures while being transported short distances.
Many electric pizza holding cabinets can also hold a variety of other foods. Some are designed with racks that can hold both food pans and pizza boxes. That feature lets cooks keep common pizzeria staples like chicken wings and mozzarella sticks warm and fresh alongside the pizza.
Pass-thru doors can dramatically improve your kitchen's workflow. Pass-thru models have one door on each of two opposite ends, allowing pizzas to be loaded and unloaded from both sides. Installing one of these units between the kitchen and the service counter can save your staff a lot of footwork they'd otherwise invest in passing pizzas between those two sections of your restaurant.
Pizza Delivery Bags
Pizza delivery bags help operators overcome the challenge of keeping delivery pizza hot on its way to its destination. These bags are typically made of vinyl and insulated with thick foam. They're designed to keep pizza at an ideal serving temperature for an hour or so.
Pizza bags come in a number of sizes, with 18 and 22 inches being the most popular. Large pizza bags can carry half a dozen or so pies, depending on the thickness of each box. Small pizza pouches are available for when you just need to tote one at a time.
Countertop Pizza Warming
Maybe you run a full-service pizza parlor and want to set up a pizza buffet. In that case, you need buffet equipment that's suitable for keeping pizza hot and accessible to customers. There are a couple types of countertop buffet warmer suitable for serving pizzas.
- Simple countertop warming trays heat pizzas from underneath and keep food hot for a short period of time.
- Heated shelves with overhead lights can keep pizza more consistently warm by heating it from both below and above.
If you're outfitting a concession stand or a food kiosk to sell pizza by the pie or by the slice, you'll want a pizza merchandising solution that can entice passersby with a glimpse of your cheesy treats. These glass-walled cases give potential customers a look at your products while keeping pizza hot and fresh.
A dry pizza display case can keep pies fresh for an hour or so, but tends to dry them out if they are held much longer than that. For extended holding, choose a humidity-controlled pizza merchandiser that will keep products hot while preserving their texture.
Pizza merchandisers take many forms. A popular one employs spinning racks that enhance pizza presentation and keeps pies more evenly heated, but a stationary rack merchandiser is a more economical alternative.
Heated shelf merchandisers make ideal solutions for displaying packaged items, especially single-serving pizzas and packaged slices. Shelf merchandisers can also hold packaged sandwiches, pretzels, and other entrees.