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Expert Shopper Patio

The trendiest backyard upgrades

Transform your outdoor space with a few trendy items.

Now that barbecue season is here, many people are looking for products that will transform their backyards and patios into the ultimate outdoor entertainment spaces. While many people have already invested in the basics, including patio furniture and string lights, this year, specialized outdoor appliances are taking over.

The Ooni Pizza Oven and Solo Stove, in particular, have garnered the most attention as top outdoor entertaining purchases. While they’re modest investments, many people agree they’re worth their prices because they’re both fun and functional — not to mention they’re well made, portable and offer years of use.

In this video:

BestReviews’ Jacob Palmer joins Gary Gelfand and Scott Moak to share two of the hottest outdoor products of the season — the Ooni Koda Pizza Oven and Solo Stove  Bonfire.

The Ooni Pizza Oven, which is easy to set up on most outdoor surfaces, ranks high as one of the best-selling outdoor pizza ovens on the market. According to Palmer, the Ooni “makes it possible to have restaurant-quality, thin-crust pizza right at home.” The gas-powered oven, available in 12- and 16-inch sizes, cooks pies in as little as 60 seconds.

Ooni delivers more than fresh pizza, though. “It’s one of those things that gives you a hobby and something to obsess over,” says Palmer. Although the Ooni has a slight learning curve — which contributes to the fun — it doesn’t take too much trial and error to learn the ins and outs of making the perfect pie.

The Solo Stove, a wood-burning fire pit, is the other “It” product. It has a smokeless design from unique airflow technology that delivers a clean burn with plenty of heat. “It gives you a more authentic fire than a propane fire table would give you,” says Palmer, noting that the Solo Stove is well suited for late-night “backyard hangs.”

Unlike other fire pits and tables on the market, which are bulky and stationary, the Solo Stove is light enough for one person to carry with or without the included travel case. Given its portable design, it’s as popular for home use as it is for tailgating, camping, and RVing. “If you want to go on the road, to a friend’s house, or to a park, you can take it with you,” says Palmer.

Regarding the rising popularity of both outdoor appliances, Palmer says it boils down to people wanting to take their backyard spaces to the next level with products that are fun, easy to use, and deliver authentic experiences. “You can do whatever you want in your own backyard,” says Palmer.

Shop this segment

Ooni Koda Pizza Oven

The popular gas pizza oven only takes 15 minutes to preheat and cooks pizza in 60 seconds. It cooks thoroughly and evenly thanks to an efficient design with superior heat retention.

Sold by Amazon and Ooni

Solo Stove Bonfire

The best-selling Solo Stove, a smokeless fire pit, earns high marks for its sleek, minimalist design. It’s one of the easiest portable fire pits to set up and clean, making it popular for on-the-road use.

Sold by Amazon, Wayfair and Solo Stove

Ooni 12-Inch Long-Handle Pizza Peel

The long-handled design of this Ooni pizza peel makes it easy and safe to retrieve pies, stromboli, and calzones. The aluminum peel is durable yet lightweight and easy to handle.

Sold by Amazon and Ooni

Ooni Koda Cover

This Ooni Koda travel cover makes the pizza oven even portable with a padded, ergonomic handle. It’s available in 12- and 16-inch sizes to accommodate both models.

Sold by Amazon and Ooni

Solo Stove Roasting Sticks and Fire Poker Set

If you’re a fan of making s’mores or roasting marshmallows and hot dogs, this fire pit tool is worth the investment. Each piece is crafted from heavy-duty 304 stainless steel and holds up to plenty of use.

Sold by Amazon and Solo Stove

Solo Stove Fire Pit Starters

These nontoxic fire starters, which are pet-safe, are made with 100% recycled hardwood. They’re also water-resistant, so they’re ideal for use in humid or damp weather.

Sold by Amazon and Solo Stove

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Sian Babish writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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