How to Clean a Pizza Stone

Updated: Mar. 14, 2024

Keep your pies fresh and your pizza stones fresher. Learning how to clean a pizza stone will prevent build-up and bacteria that could ruin your homemade pizzas.

Using a pizza stone is one of the secrets of perfect homemade pizzas. They keep your pies crispy because they maintain a lot of heat and can mimic the way a pizza oven cooks your pizza. But with the wrong care, your pizza crusts might start turning out soft and mushy rather than classically crisp.

Learning how to clean a pizza stone is easier than you think. A pizza stone is made out of porous materials like stone or ceramic. Because these materials are porous, that means it’s easier to retain moisture when soaked in water. If there’s moisture in your pizza stone when cooking, it won’t have any more room to suck in the moisture from the pizza crust. The result? The feared floppy crust with no brown edges.

Just like your cast-iron pans and wooden spoons, a pizza stone is a tool that should never go in the dishwasher. It’s also important to never soak it in your sink overnight. Luckily, there are two quick methods for removing grease, melted cheese and caked-on sauces that can help lengthen the lifespan of your pizza stone. You’ll be on your way to browned and bubbly Neapolitan pizzas in no time.

How Often to Clean a Pizza Stone

You should clean your pizza stone after each use. This will keep it fresh when you’re making the best pizzas ever, and you won’t have to deal with crumbs from last week’s pizza. Note that it is natural for your stone to get darker over time. Don’t try to buff away those signs of age! Darker stains actually result in a more seasoned crust, similar to cooking on a seasoned cast-iron skillet.


  • Bench Scraper: This tool comes in handy in the kitchen for everything from transferring chopped veggies to a pot to cleaning. Use the scraper to get stuck-on bits of food off your pizza stone.
  • Microfiber cloths: Use non-abrasive cloths to wipe down your stone once you’ve scraped it clean.
  • Baking soda: Ever-trusty baking soda has so many uses, and of course it can also clean your pizza stone when it needs some extra love.

How to Clean a Pizza Stone

So you’ve just figured out how to use a pizza stone, and now you’re wondering what the best way to clean it is. Here are two methods.

Cleaning a pizza stone with a scraper

Step 1: Allow the stone to cool completely

Always be sure the stone has completely cooled before cleaning. The stone can retain a lot of very high heat, so it will take awhile to cool. It’s important to wait so you don’t burn your hands.

Step 2: Gently scrape away food

Once cooled, lightly wet the stone under running water or with a damp cloth—just don’t get it too wet. Now, use your bench scraper to remove any tough bits of melted food. Try not to scrape with the corners of the bench scraper, as this could create small scratches on the surface of the stone. Instead, use the whole plane of the scraper to gently loosen the food.

Step 3: Buff away light stains

If there are no bits of stuck-on food and you just want to remove excess olive oil or sauce that spilled over, you could skip the bench scraper. Instead, use a damp cloth to buff away any light stains.

Cleaning a pizza stone with baking soda

If you use your pizza stone for more than pizza, chances are it gets a bit more dirty or grimy than usual. For tough stains and melted foods, you should opt for a deep clean. Still no soap though! We don’t want Dawn-flavored pizza dough. Instead, use baking soda.

Step 1: Make a paste

Make a paste with equal parts water and baking soda. You shouldn’t need too much—start with one tablespoon each.

Step 2: Scrub

Using a cloth, scrub the tough spots or stains with the paste until they are buffed out. For deep stains, you can let the paste rest for a few minutes. Wipe away the paste with a damp cloth, and let your pizza stone completely dry before storing it.

How to Deep Clean a Pizza Stone

OK, so you’ve tried your best and there is still food on your pizza stone. Don’t worry, there is a way to deep clean the stone. Because the stone can withstand so much heat, the deep cleaning process is a breeze.

Simply set your oven to 500°F and place the pizza stone on the top rack. After about an hour, you should see bubbles forming from the grease. At this point, you can turn the oven off and let it cool down with the stone still in there. Once cool, wipe the stone clean with a damp cloth and let it dry completely.

How to Maintain Your Pizza Stone

Your pizza stone is now sparkling clean and you’re wondering how best to keep it in shape. There are a few things to keep in mind that will maintain the integrity of your pizza stone. Cleaning your pizza stone after ease use means you’re off to a good start.

Once your stone is wiped down, you’ll want to let it air dry on a drying rack. Just like too much water can damage the stone, the same is true for oils. Save the food-grade oil for maintaining your cutting boards—you don’t want to use this on a pizza stone. This means no “seasoning” like you would with a cast iron skillet either.

Another product you should never use on your stone is steel wool. This can create scuffs and scrapes on the surface of the stone. If a damp rag and the flat edge of a bench scraper isn’t doing the trick, try a stiff brush.

At the end of the day, remember that a pizza stone is a pretty low-maintenance kitchen tool. All it wants is to be dry and preheated with your oven so that it doesn’t experience thermal shock (Thermal shock can cause your pizza stone to crack if you put a cold stone in a hot oven).

If you’re really worried about keeping your stone clean, you can cover it with a sheet of parchment paper. Pizzas usually cook around 500°F, and parchment paper can withstand heat up to 450°, but it won’t hurt your pizza if the paper reaches 500°. Note that the parchment paper might darken or get crispy.