I tried the Ooni Koda 2 Max – here’s 3 features I loved and 1 I didn't

I ate my bodyweight in pizza, steak and dessert from the Ooni Koda 2 Max – here’s my honest thoughts on the new pizza oven

Ooni Koda 2 Max
(Image credit: Beth Girdler-Maslen / T3)

Ooni recently launched its newest pizza oven, the Ooni Koda 2 Max. Part of the popular Koda series, the Ooni Koda 2 Max features a huge 24-inch cooking area, two independent cooking zones and new Ooni G2 Gas technology, putting it well in the race for the best pizza oven crown.

I recently got to see the Ooni Koda 2 Max in action as I was very kindly invited to the launch event. While the weather was less than ideal, and we had to cower underneath a gazebo to avoid the rain, the Ooni Koda 2 Max definitely didn’t disappoint.

Not only did I get to have a delicious three course meal cooked by the Ooni Koda 2 Max, and a special appearance from the Ooni Koda 12 which took care of the appetisers, but I also got to understand how the new pizza oven works and test out its new features. Now that I’ve tried the Ooni Koda 2 Max, here’s three features I loved and one I wasn’t completely sold on.

1. Two independent cooking zones

Taking a leaf out of the best air fryers book, the Ooni Koda 2 Max has two independently controlled gas burners for dual-zone cooking. Inside the mouth of the pizza oven are two split stones which allows for side-by-side customisable cooking, meaning you can cook low and slow on one side and hot and fast on the other.

Seeing this in action was really impressive. After listening to a speech from the Ooni founder, Kristian Tapaninaho, about the company and the new pizza oven, we got to watch the three course meal being made, which consisted of scallops, turbot, pizza, steak and lamb chops. When making the pizza flatbread, the Ooni Koda 2 Max had one side at a high heat to perfectly crisp up the base and give it that nice char, while the other side was a lot lower to slow cook the lamb.

Ooni Koda 2 Max

(Image credit: Beth Girdler-Maslen / T3)

I use my pizza oven almost every weekend, and I’ve wanted to expand my cooking horizons with it, as I typically stick to pizza, flatbreads and naan breads. Seeing the Ooni Koda 2 Max easily tackle fish, meat and dessert made me more excited to give this a go.

2. Easy-to-use controls

I’ve tried an Ooni pizza oven before, but after seeing the Ooni Koda 2 Max in its entirety, I was really impressed by the controls and display, specifically where they were located. With a 24-inch cooking area, the Ooni Koda 2 Max isn’t small by any stretch of the imagination, but it positions its controls in a time-saving way, so the pizza oven isn’t made even bigger by a huge control panel.

Instead, the gas burner controls are located on the right side of the Ooni Koda 2 Max, keeping them conveniently out of the way and not directly underneath the pizza oven mouth. The controls don’t stick out too much either, and the main digital temperature hub sits just below the mouth to show you accurate temperature readings.

As smart technology finds its way into almost every aspect of the home and garden, the Ooni Koda 2 Max has app connectivity so you can sync the pizza oven with the Ooni app. We got to see the app in action, but the Ooni team stressed how this was just an exciting extra and not a necessity for the Ooni Koda 2 Max to work. As someone who avoids downloading apps unless I absolutely need to, I appreciated seeing how the app worked but like how there was no pressure to use it if you didn’t want to.

3. The big, big size!

As mentioned above, the Ooni Koda 2 Max is a pretty huge pizza oven, and the photos really don’t do it justice. It measures 80cm x 72.2cm x 42.8cm and weighs 43kg, plus as a gas-powered pizza oven, you’ll also have to consider the gas canister to go along with it.

Having said that, I liked the size of the Ooni Koda 2 Max, mainly because it feels like more of a permanent fixture in the garden and can fit a huge dessert pizza inside it! One of the many reasons people love Ooni pizza ovens is their compact size that can easily be out on show or stored away. But as someone who uses my pizza oven on a weekly basis, it’s annoying to have to put it away after each use.

With the Ooni Koda 2 Max’s big size, it can (and should, in my opinion) permanently stay out in your garden. Since outdoor kitchens are becoming more popular this year, the Ooni Koda 2 Max is the perfect appliance to introduce to your outdoor space, and with its sleek and industrial-looking design, why wouldn’t you want to?!

Ooni Koda 2 Max

(Image credit: Beth Girdler-Maslen / T3)

The Ooni Koda 2 Max feature I’m not sure about…

Speaking of size, the Ooni Koda 2 Max comes with many accessories (bought separately) to make your pizza-making experience easier and more authentic. It can sit anywhere in your garden with its four legs, but it can also be bought with an Ooni Pizza Table, and this is the feature I’m not too sure about.

I got to see the Ooni Koda 2 Max on the pizza table, and I actually really liked the stand which might sound a little misleading, but hear me out. Available in multiple sizes, it gives the Ooni Koda 2 Max a good level of height and has multiple shelves for storage. But the storage is where I think it falls short.

Ooni Koda 2 Max

(Image credit: Beth Girdler-Maslen / T3)

I have the Gozney Dome S1 and find that its stand is better for storing things as it has space on the sides rather than underneath. As a very clumsy person, I find it much easier to remove my pizza and place it on the side rather than move it underneath, where my other ingredients are waiting.

But this is a very small design flaw (if you can even call it that!) that doesn't take away from the brilliant design and performance of the Ooni Koda 2 Max. The Ooni Koda 2 Max is available to pre-order now at Ooni for £799.

Bethan Girdler-Maslen
Home Editor

Beth is Home Editor for T3, looking after style, living and wellness. From the comfiest mattresses to what strange things you can cook in an air fryer, Beth covers sleep, yoga, smart home, coffee machines, grooming tools, fragrances, gardening and much more. If it's something that goes in your house, chances are Beth knows about it and has the latest reviews and recommendations! She's also in the know about the latest deals and discount codes from top brands and retailers.

Having always been passionate about writing, she’s written for websites, newspapers and magazines on a variety of topics, from jewellery and culture, to food and telecoms. You can find her work across numerous sites, including Wedding Ideas Magazine, Health & Wellbeing, The Bristol Post, Fashion & Style Directory, TechRadar, CreativeBloq and more. In her spare time, Beth enjoys running, reading, baking and attempting craft projects that will probably end in disaster!