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Old 12-20-2009, 11:28 AM   #1
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Using a paving stone as a pizza/baking stone

has anyone here used a paving stone as pizza/ baking stone? AB says it is a good option in his gear book, I am just worried about getting the wrong kind of stone. At the same time I do no want to spend the money on a fancy "Pizza/Bread Stone."

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Old 12-20-2009, 12:09 PM   #2
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I'm not sure about food safety and paving stones. You might want to see what they are made of before you try it. Not sure about stuff like lead content, etc.
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Old 12-20-2009, 01:29 PM   #3
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Two things come to mind here:

1) Find a not so fancy pizza stone at Walmart/K-Mart/Target for $12-$16. My kids gave me one 8-10 years ago (I know it was under $15) that is still chugging along just fine.

2) Buy a lead test kit, they run about $8-$15, and test your paving stone to make sure it is lead free.
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Old 12-20-2009, 01:38 PM   #4
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I purchased a regular 16" pizza stone with a wire rack holder for less than $21, and I don't have to worry about lead, glazing or any other nonsense. Just invest in a pizza stone...

Some cheap workarounds, simply aren't worth the time, effort or trouble!
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Old 12-20-2009, 02:28 PM   #5
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We're glad we bought a Hearthkit some 5-6 years ago. Since, we bake well over 50 loaves of bread per season (Dec thru May) i think we recovered the cost of the Hearthkit within four years. Those round 1/2" thick pizza stones don't hold a candle to the thicker hearthkit. If and when, God forbid, I have to replace the Hearthkit (they seem to be out of business) I hope fibrament is still available.
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Old 12-20-2009, 04:35 PM   #6
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I purchased a regular 16" pizza stone with a wire rack holder for less than $21, and I don't have to worry about lead, glazing or any other nonsense. Just invest in a pizza stone...

Some cheap workarounds, simply aren't worth the time, effort or trouble!
I agree. Paving stones are made out of many different materials,......some probably safe and some probably not so. And you have no way of knowing which are safe and which are not. A lead kit is fine as far as it goes; but there are many other materials that are unsafe that you will not be testing for.

Just buy a pizza stone. it may cost a little more that you are comfortable with; but how much is your health and that of your family worth??
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Old 12-20-2009, 04:38 PM   #7
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My local Safeway has a decent stone for $9.
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Old 12-20-2009, 04:39 PM   #8
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i have a stone from pampered chef .. 20 bucks i think ..
been on the grill a lot ..
i like it ..
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Old 12-20-2009, 06:28 PM   #9
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I am not sure if the moisture content is going to be an issue but I put a charcoal chimney onto our patio and removed the top layer of the stone when it popped. Someone wasn't too happy with me, especially on a 3 month old patio. :)
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Old 03-18-2010, 11:25 AM   #10
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I have been using unglazed quarry tiles (from a home improvement store) for many years. I was steered to that by Italian home cooks. They stressed the importance that the tiles be UNglazed.

The price is surely right.

I don't know what pavers are made of nor how thick or heavy they would be in terms of awkwardness to handle and or store when you're not using them.
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Old 03-18-2010, 11:29 AM   #11
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Yes, I saw the episode where AB used one, unfortunatelly I do not exactly remember what kind it was. Id you do get one, plese let us know how it's working for you. I wouldn't mind get one my self.
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Old 03-18-2010, 11:50 AM   #12
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This website can be a hoot- some people are advocating cooking on pavement while others are washing the vitamin enrichment off their rice.
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Old 03-19-2010, 10:21 AM   #13
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Yes, I saw the episode where AB used one, unfortunatelly I do not exactly remember what kind it was. Id you do get one, plese let us know how it's working for you. I wouldn't mind get one my self.
He mentions a "quarry tile", which I suspect is not just any pavement stone, but a specific type. With pavement stones, there's risk of lead and radon, so you do have to be careful -- they don't have food safety in mind when they manufacture them.
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Old 03-19-2010, 10:40 AM   #14
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He mentions a "quarry tile", which I suspect is not just any pavement stone, but a specific type. With pavement stones, there's risk of lead and radon, so you do have to be careful -- they don't have food safety in mind when they manufacture them.
Yes, it was unglazed quarry tile. However, I have no problem using an actual pizza stone.
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Old 03-20-2010, 03:18 AM   #15
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I heard unglazed tiles were safe to use for a stone. You could maybe use a sheet pan an put those on top. But don't get glazed ones, just use the UNGLAZED ones.
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Old 03-20-2010, 07:51 AM   #16
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You could maybe use a sheet pan an put those on top.
That would kind of defeat most of the point of using a stone in the first place though.
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Old 06-08-2010, 04:06 PM   #17
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Never tried to use a paving stone, anyway, thanks for some info regarding the use of this paving stone and maybe, I still need more idea for food safety about this paving. :)
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Old 07-13-2011, 09:44 AM   #18
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I just saw this post and have to say, for anyone reading this, using a paving stone was never mentioned by Alton Brown. He said to use quarry stones like was mentioned by ChefJune. They are made from clay or shales, not concrete like the majority of paving stones. It's rare to find the right ones at home improvement stores (in the midwest anyway) anymore and buying the wrong kind is not worth the terrible flavors (and possible toxins) it will place in your food.

If you don't know what you're looking for, then get a pizza stone. It's a good investment!
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Old 07-13-2011, 07:28 PM   #19
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Unglazed quarry tiles are available at Lowes. They are red, made from clay. The color is a dark terracotta.

The ones I bought were 12 inches square, so for a big pizza, you might need 4.

I do not worry about using them--lord only knows what baking stones are made out of, particulary if you buy a Chinese made one.
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Old 07-14-2011, 08:29 AM   #20
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My local Lowe's doesn't stock them.. nor do any in the area and, thus, the reason for bit about not finding them in the midwest. When I lived in TN the Lowe's down there had them.
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