Whether you’re pulling a steaming hot hand-tossed pizza out of the oven or a personal frozen pie out of the microwave, you probably can’t wait to slice the delicious crust and dig in.
Unlike delivery pizza, you most likely need to cut it up yourself before serving. As you pull open the silverware drawer, you can’t seem to find the classic circular pizza cutter that slices the pizza perfectly every time.
Before you start clenching your fist and getting ready to tear the pizza apart with your bare hands from sheer hangry (hungry+angry) frustration, take a deep breath and read through this article.
Just because a pizza cutter has “pizza” in the name doesn’t mean that other tools can’t divvy up a pizza in a pinch. We’ve listed several different pizza cutter alternatives to help you figure out what to use if you don’t have a pizza cutter.
While it might seem a little weird at first to use the same tool for cutting pizza as you use for paper, scissors are the preferred method for pizza cutting for some folks. We’d recommend that you don’t knock it until you try it–many pizza lovers swear by this trick!
Naturally, you will want to use a different pair of scissors for your pizza than you use for craft projects or household needs. Regular scissors will probably not work.
A pair of heavy-duty kitchen scissors are specially designed to tear through the pizza effectively. Also, you will avoid getting germs and gunk such as dried glue on your pizza if you use a special pair of kitchen shears to cut your pizza.
Make sure to wash the kitchen shears with warm water and gentle soap after using them so that you don’t get build-up on them. When we don’t clean kitchen shears, we run the risk of them developing bacteria, clogging with food waste, dulling, or rusting.
If you want a tool specifically designed to help you cut your pizza, look no further than pizza shears. With all of the convenience of kitchen shears and the special design of a pizza cutter, pizza scissors are a great alternative to a traditional rolling pizza cutter. Usually, these scissors look like any other pair of scissors or kitchen shears.
The main difference between pizza scissors and regular scissors (and kitchen shears) is that they sometimes include an attached spatula. The attached spatula makes it easy to slice and serve the pizza with the same tool. This lowers the number of dirty dishes after a wonderful pizza night and increases the convenience level for whoever is tasked with slicing the pizza. It’s an innovative invention for the pizza-loving community.
The stationary nature of pizza scissors will make them a lot easier to sharpen than a regular rolling pizza cutter. Speaking of which, if your pizza cutter seems out of commission because it’s not cutting through crusts like it used to, it may just need to be sharpened.
We’d wait to throw out a pizza cutter until you’ve tried sharpening it and cleaning it. If you try sharpening it and it works, you may not even need these tips–but you’re welcome to experiment with pizza cutting methods to find what feels best to you.
Since a knife is a blade, it should be able to slice a pizza as long as it is sharp and wide enough to split the pizza into triangles or squares. Take care to let the pizza cool completely before cutting it with a chef’s knife.
As James Beard Award-winning chef Ann Kim explains in an article on foodandwine.com, “‘When you use a wheel, because of the motion of it going around, there’s less likelihood for the cheese to stick,’ Kim explains. ‘But if you were to use, say, a chef’s knife to cut through it, I can see how the cheese might stick.
What I would suggest is just to have either a clean dish towel or a paper towel at your disposal. And just carefully, lightly, swipe through and then go for that second cut. That’s what I would recommend. I also think, if you are using a chef’s knife, wait for it to cool down because that will prevent the cheese from sticking to a room temperature knife.’
While it might be tempting to cut the pizza as soon as you pull it from the oven, your patience and perseverance will be rewarded. After all, no one likes a pizza that’s been stripped of all its cheesy goodness because somebody couldn’t resist the urge to cut the pizza right away. Good things take time, and a pizza with its layer of cheese intact is a good, yummy thing worth the wait.
Some recommend only cutting pizza with a chef’s knife that is long enough to span the full diameter of the pizza for the cleanest cut. However, a smaller chef’s knife should work if that is all you have available. As long as you let the pizza cool before cutting and follow Chef Kim’s suggestions, a chef’s knife is a great alternative to a pizza cutter.
This common kitchen tool looks like a regular knife with a squared-off, thick, broad blade. Even if you don’t know the name of this kitchen tool, you will probably recognize it from our picture below. It looks a little like a machete for the kitchen, so you’ll feel like a total warrior chopping your pizza with this tool.
A meat cleaver is good for more than just cutting a pizza. It has multiple uses in the kitchen and even in the pizza-making process.
As expressdigest shares, “If you’re making homemade pizza, you can use the meat cleaver to spin the pizza inside the oven and take it out of the oven. As for slicing, the meat cleaver allows you to create the perfect slices in one go. You can also use the tool to serve the slices to the people you’re sharing the pizza with.” (https://expressdigest.com/what-can-i-use-instead-of-a-pizza-cutter/)
If you are going to use your meat cleaver as a spatula to serve pizza, make sure that those you are serving keep their fingers and hands out of the way when you place it on their plate.
If the blade is sharp enough to cut through a thick, crunchy crust, it could do some damage to unsuspecting fingers. Better to be safe than sorry, so give them a heads up and watch where your blade is as you’re serving up tasty slices.
Do you cut pizza right out of the oven?
Depending on the tools you are using to cut the pizza, you may want to wait for your pizza to cool before attempting to slice it. When using a traditional pizza roller, the rotating design of the blade makes it safe to cut a hot or warm pizza.
As we discussed above, a stationary blade like a chef’s knife might clump cheese or catch toppings if you try to use it to cut the pizza while the pie is still hot. To preserve the toppings and avoid a stringy cheesy mess, we would suggest waiting until the pizza has cooled at least a little before cutting it.
You can always test a small part of the pizza before cutting it. If a corner of the pizza’s cheese clumps around the knife or other tool you are using, it might be best to let it cool a little longer.
If you really can’t wait, you can always tuck the pie in the fridge or freezer for a few minutes to help speed up the process. Just don’t let it stay there too long or else you’ll be back to square one.