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Advice on proposed design - Parrilla and Steel pizza oven - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community



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Advice on proposed design - Parrilla and Steel pizza oven

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  • Advice on proposed design - Parrilla and Steel pizza oven

    Hi all,

    New to this forum and hoping for some advice on my proposed design. Im about to build an Argentinean parrilla BBQ with a wood fired steel/cast iron oven. It is inspired by my father-in-laws parrilla in northern Argentina (see pic below). Essentially it is just a small steel box oven suspended over the fire area. For grilling meat the Argentine way, you build the fire to one side and once the coals are white hot you spread them under the grill for a nice even slow grilling of the meat. The grill can also be adjusted in height over the coals for ultimate temp control.

    Id like to add a small oven above the fire and have requested quotes from local welders/metal workers to get it made up (see my sketch below). Not cheap, so I want to make sure it is as good as it can be. The goal is to bake pizzas, bread, potatoes, vegies and maybe roast inside the oven, as well as it being a warming area after the fires out.

    Cast iron would be perfect, but not many metalworkers around here can build with it. Alternative is 5-6mm steel I suppose. Not sure if I should allow for any draft holes in the box anywhere (apart from the door)?

    Thanks for any comments.
    Attached Files

  • #2
    Re: Advice on proposed design - Parrilla and Steel pizza oven

    Just got a new quote for the steel box/door frame thing on that sketch and it was way overbudget so i'm changing tack... maybe i can just span some firebrick slabs from wall to wall and create a little firebrick cube oven? It would be heated by the fire underneath.

    There is a local source that sells 450mm firebrick slabs, 50mm thick. Would the heat from the fire underneath pass through the 50mm thk slab to heat up the mini-oven above?

    I've posed the same question on the Australia forum.


    • #3
      Re: Advice on proposed design - Parrilla and Steel pizza oven

      White ovens don't really work well for pizza- not enough top heat.

      If you really want to combine the Parilla with a pizza oven, put a flat 12" high ceiling on the firebox, increase the width of the door to 16", and bake the pizza next to the coals, in the firebox. It's hard to tell from the picture, but it looks like the smoke from the fire is venting straight up and around the oven above it. With a 12" ceiling in place, the smoke will vent laterally and up through the first couple inches of grill area.

      Is the firebox 28" or wider? You need at least that much for a fire and a pizza.

      If you want Neapolitan pizza, you should insulate the ceiling, which will basically take the current oven area out of the picture completely.

      You might be able to skip the insulation and have a slow roasting oven above IF you didn't care too much about longer baked non Neapolitan pizza. Regardless of whether or not you insulate it, you'll need a flat ceiling running the distance of that entire left side- all the way to the grill.


      • #4
        Re: Advice on proposed design - Parrilla and Steel pizza oven

        Or build something like this guy...



        • #5
          Re: Advice on proposed design - Parrilla and Steel pizza oven

          I think your original idea of using firebrick is a better solution. The better conductivity of a steel box will mean it will heat up faster, but also cool down faster. At least the firebrick will retain more heat and take longer to lose it.
          Kindled with zeal and fired with passion.


          • #6
            Re: Advice on proposed design - Parrilla and Steel pizza oven

            Thanks for the feedback guys.

            David - this is an older thread than the other one, the steel box was my original idea but now the firebrick box is the current plan. Thanks for your info on the insulation, i'll look into that.

            ebbro - thats an awesome build and one of the ways i came across this site (after searching parrilla with oven) - just wish i had the space and $$ to build something like that!

            scott123 - good ideas, thanks, but i don't have the space for putting pizzas in with the fire. maybe i'll have to forgo the pizza idea and just keep it as a warming space for veg, roast, bread etc. Good tips about insulation. The current sketch for the box oven out of firebrick slabs is shown attached.

            i'm off learn about insulation/vermicrete now!


            • #7
              Re: Advice on proposed design - Parrilla and Steel pizza oven

              Harro, putting together a brick oven of this stature and not getting pizza out of it would be incredibly sad, imo.

              You're building the oven, right? If your design doesn't have the space for baking pizza, make it. This thing is a behemoth. The bottom left half of the oven should be more than enough space for a fire and a pizza, leaving the right half for the grill.

              If it comes down to a roasting/warming oven + grilled meat vs. pizza + grilled meat, then that should be a no brainer. Who cares about roasting/warming stuff when you can have wood fired oven pizza? Right side- grilled meat. Can't ever go wrong with grilled meat. But left? Pizza!