There’s nothing worse than serving up a delicious pizza after a hard day at work only to find that your pizza cutter has lost its sharpness and is incapable of delivering a decent cut.
What’s worse is that you don’t know whether you can sharpen it and don’t want to fork out extra money on a new pizza cutter that is inevitably going to do the same thing in the future.
This is why you’ve come to the right place and we have researched everything you need to know about pizza cutters and their maintenance. We’ll be taking you through why pizza cutters become dull as well as whether they can be sharpened and how best to go about sharpening them.
Although pizza cutters were first invented in 1892, they have become a necessity in the modern kitchen, helping to create the perfect pizza slices that a knife and fork simply don’t do.
So whether you’ve recently purchased a pizza cutter and want to know how to maintain it in the future or if your long lasting pizza cutter has finally become dull, we’ll take you through the process of how to properly take care of your utensil.
We’ve taken all of those burning questions you may have had about pizza cutters and compiled this article to answer the most asked questions there are.
From where the pizza cutter originated to whether they can be sharpened and how to go about maintaining them should they become dull. Once you’ve finished this guide, you’ll be an expert on how the pizza cutter works and how you should be taking care of it.
Pizza cutter origins
The pizza cutter was invented in 1892 by David S. Morgan but wasn’t intended for pizzas at all but wallpapers. This makes sense due to the fine lines that the cutter creates.
Originally known as a roller knife, it has become a hugely popular tool for pizza cutting within the last decade and thus is now made with pizzas in mind.
Pizza cutters can also be used for vegetables as well thanks to the accuracy and ease of use. The simple wheel and axle structure means that it is able to handle and use whilst being safe and sturdy, allowing you to create equal sized slices of pizza and other foods.
The cutter was invented during a period of time that saw a huge increase in immigration to the United States. Out of a huge 20 million people who moved to the United States between 1880-1920, 4 million of those people were Italian.
It’s no coincidence that it was during this time that traditional Italian dishes such as pizza became hugely popular. It’s likely that the roller knife became synonymous with pizza cutting during this period.
What can you use a pizza cutter for?
Just because it is called a pizza cutter doesn’t mean that it can only be used for pizzas. You can use pizza cutters on vegetables, lasagnas or deserts such as brownies.
This is thanks to the circular blade which can easily cut through and create equal, smaller pieces. Using the pizza cutter on these foods will not damage the blade in any way and prevent any mess that can be made when using a knife and fork.
It’s important to remember that inventions are usually made for something different on its inception. Just as the pizza cutter was originally supposed to be used to cut up wallpaper, you can use the cutter for anything if it can cut through it.
Some people nowadays even use it for thin fabrics as it can help to cut evenly across and avoid any wobbles that scissors can cause.
Do pizza cutters get dull?
The simple answer is yes, pizza cutters do get dull. As they’re not designed to be super sharp, they can become dull very easily and quickly if not used correctly.
Thanks to the circular shape, it can be tricky to sharpen it as it is hard to grip the blade but it can be done. You may find that when your pizza cutter is dull that it is not cutting through your pizza as well as it should be and therefore meaning you have to apply more pressure thus damaging it further.
There are other utensils you can use in place of a pizza cutter including knives or bladeless cutting methods. Bear in mind however that knives can also become dull over time and bladeless cutting won’t provide as sleek and equal results.
Because of the wheel and axle structure of the pizza cutter, the simple continuous cut through larger foods such as pizzas means that you are reducing the amount of excess mess in your kitchen and will make for nicer presentation which is ideal if you are having a nice meal.
Why is my pizza cutter dull?
So you’ve found that your pizza cutter has become dull and aren’t sure as to why this has happened. If you have had it a long time and have used it a long time, it’s probably because of continued use.
However, another reason could be that you are using the pizza cutter on the wrong surface. The pizza cutter can be dulled from surfaces such as stone, steel or pans as they are hard whereas materials such as wood or plastic are ideal as they are softer and will avoid any further damage.
It’s always better to think of your pizza cutter like a sharp knife. Just like knives, pizza cutters can become dull from continued or incorrect use. Even though they may not look the same thanks to the pizza cutter’s circular blade, it does become dull as it is not a naturally sharp blade.
Because of the way the pizza cutter works as it is wheeled through, there is an even use of the blade the whole way round the edge.
However, if you are applying a lot of pressure on the wheel especially on a hard surface as mentioned before, it will eventually cause the blade to become dull and it won’t be able to cut through efficiently.
Can you sharpen a pizza cutter?
As with most kitchen utensils, pizza cutters can be sharpened and maintained. Although this can be a bit tricky the first time you do it thanks to the unconventional shape, it does become easier the more you maintain the pizza cutter.
To sharpen a pizza cutter, you must hold it at a 45 degree angle and sharpen the wheel from the inside out. By having it at this angle, it is less likely to spin out of control and you’ll have a better grip.
Wet the pizza cutter and grind it against the stone and apply pressure to ensure that the edges are being sharpened.
The tools you can use to sharpen a pizza cutter include whetstones and knife sharpeners. Always follow the instructions given with your chosen tool to ensure that you are using it correctly to prevent any permanent damage to the sharpening tool and also to the pizza cutter itself.
However, making sure that you have a strong grip of the pizza cutter is the most important aspect as the wheel can be difficult to maneuver initially.
What surfaces are best to use a pizza cutter?
As mentioned before, the best surfaces to use a pizza cutter on are softer services such as wood and plastic. Wood is the best option to go for hence why pizzas are often served on wooden boards at restaurants.
If you decide to go for a wooden cutting board then opt for a harder wood as this will withstand the longevity of your cutter. Although pizza cutters will likely need sharpening at some point in their lifespan, this will assist in reducing the amount of times you will have to do it.
Always think of your pizza cutter like a sharp knife and replicate the surfaces you would use a sharp knife on, however, also note that the circular blade is a unique and unusual shape for a blade and therefore needs a bit of extra care.
Bear in mind also that if you use the pizza cutter on harder surfaces then it can cause scratches which may not be repairable. Equally, softer woods may also be vulnerable to scratches that are highly visible thanks to the lighter color.
By opting for harder woods, not only are you using a material that is friendly on your pizza cutter blade, but scratches and cuts won’t be as noticeable thanks to the darker coloring that hard wood tends to have.
Can I use my pizza cutter on a stone?
Although stone is used to sharpen pizza cutters, they are often the cause of the utensil becoming dull in the first place.
Stone surfaces can actually damage your pizza cutter if used regularly because of how hard the surface is. It’s best to avoid using pizza cutters on stone surfaces at any cost. This will only cause further damage and money to repair or replace.
A lot of people opt to use knife sharpeners or whetstones as these can assist a bit in maintaining the grip of the pizza cutter and reducing the risk of damage.
Knife sharpeners are probably the best option because pizza cutters are a lot like sharp knives and need to follow the same maintenance as them.
Whetstones can also be used and are a popular choice but they may not sharpen the pizza cutter as well as you would like due to the movement of the wheel of the pizza cutter.
Do I let the pizza cool before cutting?
This won’t affect the sharpness of the blade directly, but it is advisable to let the pizza cool before cutting as this will prevent any cheese from slipping off the pizza and onto the blade.
Bear in mind that if a lot of cheese blocks the cutter, it may cause you to put a lot of unnecessary pressure on the cutter whilst trying to continue cutting and therefore, blunting the edges, especially if cutting on a hard surface.
If you wait a bit before cutting, you’ll be able to avoid this scenario and be able to apply a suitable amount of pressure to your cutting and thus keep the blade sharp.
Knowing when is the best time to cut the pizza will mean that you are getting the best use out of your pizza cutter and will reduce any premature damage to the blade.
Although pizza cutters are not the most expensive item, this will avoid having to spend more money on them because they keep getting dull and you don’t have the tools to maintain and sharpen it.
In conclusion, pizza cutters may be a small utensil kept in kitchens around the globe but just like knives, they do need to be used correctly and maintained as such. If you don’t use the pizza cutter correctly then it’s going to become damaged and need sharpening before it completely breaks.
Although they are not the most expensive utensil in the kitchen, the last thing you want to do is be spending more money every so often on pizza cutters when they can be simply sharpened to solve the problem.
By following the tricks and tips given in this guide, you’ll be able to get the most out of your pizza cutter and maybe find more use for it in the future whether you use it on vegetables, brownies or even wallpaper!
Always remember to avoid using the pizza cutter on hard surfaces if possible and try to invest in some hard wood cutting boards in order to maintain the cutter well without having to sharpen it a lot.
When it does come to sharpening the blade, it’s best to use a knife sharpener and try to angle the blade at a 45 degree angle in order to maintain a better grip.
By doing this, you are reducing any risk to the blade and also yourself. Pizza cutters have become a huge essential part of any kitchen and it’s easy to see why.
From humble beginnings as a wallpaper cutter to the main utensil with pizzas, pizza cutters are highly unique and simple in their structure and yet provide the best results.