It’s Pizza Night!
Friday night is pizza night at our house! Sometimes we’ll order pizza from our local pizza shop, but there’s nothing quite as satisfying as making a hot delicious pizza pie with your own hands! Especially, with homemade pizza crust! I am a pizza crust lover for sure!
It’s much easier than you think! I love to make my dough a day ahead, the overnight rest or fermentation in the refrigerator really deepens the flavor and seems to make the dough a little easier to work with.
You can make a quick homemade pizza sauce with your food processor or blender – it tastes so much better than anything you’d buy in a can or jar. Recipe Here!
How Do You Like Your Pizza?
There are so many different styles of pizza: Neapolitan, NY style, Chicago Deep Dish, Sicilian… and everyone seems to have their personal favorite! I love trying all different kinds! When I was in college, I worked at 3 different pizza shops and learned a little from each one of them!
What flour should I use for Pizza Crust?
Different flours can give you slightly different crust results. These are the various flour and flour combinations I’ve tried:
(All three had an overnight rise/ferment in the refrigerator and were baked on a preheated pizza stone at 475 degrees F.)
- All-Purpose Flour – You probably already have this flour in your pantry – handy! The dough was not hard to roll/stretch out. Results were a chewy, “bready” crust.
- Bread Flour – Bread flour is available at most grocery stores. This dough wants to spring back a bit when stretching out. (When this happens give it a rest for several minutes and come back to it.) When baked, this crust gets a nice crunch and char on the bottom (see pic below), chewy in the center, lots of bubbles in dough. Lighter in texture. This is my favorite.
- Italian 00 flour + All-Purpose Flour – 00 flour can be harder to source and more expensive. It’s a very finely milled flour which is nice for pasta dough. For pizza crust, I mix it with half all-purpose flour as it doesn’t brown very well in our home ovens – commercial pizza ovens are much hotter. To me, this crust seemed a little denser than the bread flour crust, but when taste testing side-by-side the other 3 members of my family liked the flavor of this crust the best.
“When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie, that’s amore!”Jack Brooks
Easy Homemade Pizza Dough (Makes 1, 12-inch pizza)
- 3/4 cup water (room temperature) plus more if needed
- 1 tablespoon olive oil plus extra for greasing bowl
- 2 1/4 cups flour + more if needed see notes for flour options
- 1 1/4 oz. package or 2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast (rapid rise)
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- You can mix pizza dough by hand, with a stand mixer or in a food processor.
- Combine oil and water in a liquid measuring cup.
- Use dough blade or metal multi-purpose blade (if you don't have a dough blade) - pulse to combine dry ingredients. Then add liquid while running unit on high speed. When mixture forms a ball, pulse several times to knead dough. If dough seems too wet or dry, you can add a little flour or water. Turn dough out onto lightly floured surface and knead by hand for a few turns.
- Use dough hook. (or start with flat beater and mix just until wet and dry ingred. come together into shaggy texture - then switch to dough hook) Use only Speed 2. While stirring the dry ingredients, pour the oil and water in a slow steady stream. Knead dough on speed 2 for 3-5 minutes or until dough forms a smooth ball and cleans the side of the bowl. If dough seems too wet or dry, you can add a little flour or water.
Mixing/Kneading By Hand:
- In large bowl, stir together dry ingredients, then stir in wet ingredients. Once mixture forms shaggy texture. Turn out onto lightly floured surface and knead 5-7 minutes or until dough becomes smooth and supple. (not too sticky.)
- If refrigerating dough overnight: Place dough in lightly greased zip-top bag and refrigerate for 8-12 hours. If making pizza the same day, place dough in lightly greased bowl, turn dough in greased bowl to coat with oil. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and set in warm place to rise. Allow dough to rise 1 - 2 1/2 hours or until doubled in size.
Form Ball/Second Rise-Rest:
- Remove dough from refrigerator or bowl, gently press to deflate. If sticky, sprinkle lightly with flour and form into a ball. Cover ball with plastic wrap and allow dough to rest/rise about 30 min. - 1 hour or longer if it was refrigerated. Dough should be room temperature and puffy. While dough is resting/rising preheat oven to 450-500 degrees F. (I usually use 475) If using pizza stone, place on bottom rack of oven for preheating.
Form Pizza & Bake:
- Using hands or rolling pin, gently stretch/roll dough to round shape. If dough is very stretchy and keeps springing back, cover and let rest for about 15 minutes. Top as desired and bake for about 7-12 minutes on pizza stone or in pizza pan.
What flour should I use for Pizza Crust?Different flours can give you slightly different crust results. These are the various flour and flour combinations I've tried: (All three had an overnight rise/ferment in the refrigerator and were baked on a preheated pizza stone at 475 degrees F.)
- All-Purpose Flour - You probably already have this flour in your pantry - handy! The dough was not hard to roll/stretch out. Results were a chewy, "bready" crust.
- Bread Flour - Bread flour is available at most grocery stores. This dough wants to spring back a bit when stretching out. (When this happens give it a rest for several minutes and come back to it.) When baked, this crust gets a nice crunch and char on the bottom (see pic below), chewy in the center, lots of bubbles in dough. Lighter in texture. This is my favorite.
- Italian 00 flour + All-Purpose Flour - 00 flour can be harder to source and more expensive. It's a very finely milled flour which is nice for pasta dough. For pizza crust, I mix it with half all-purpose flour as it doesn't brown very well in our home ovens - commercial pizza ovens are much hotter. To me, this crust seemed a little denser than the bread flour crust, but when taste testing side-by-side the other 3 members of my family liked the flavor of this crust the best.
I used bread flour and even after letting it rest for almost an hour “after” the second rise I still couldn’t get it to stay stretched. I must have done something wrong just not sure what, can you offer some advise? MY pizza would have been about the size of a soft ball and thick as all get out.
Hi Perry! Wow that was some stubborn dough! Did it seem to be room temperature? Was it soft and puffy? Trying to get a sense of the texture.
Yes it was at room temperature and it did seem to be soft but I don’t know about puffy, I’d say more rubbery than puffy. It did seem a bit dense.
Hi Perry – I wish I had a definitive answer for you. I am thinking perhaps it needed more moisture/water in the dough or it needed to rest longer. Did you knead the dough by hand or with food processor or stand mixer – I’m working in the kitchen today – I’ll mix up a batch and see if I have any more thoughts for you.
Should the dough be sticky to the touch? If so, a little tacky or really sticky. My wife thought mine should have been a little stickier which may lend to your thoughts of it needing more water.
One more question – Did you do the overnight rise or all-in-one-day? I need to do some testing on a double batch with the 6qt stand mixer – thought maybe I’d test half the batch each way.
Could it be that I over-kneaded the dough? I used my stand mixer and I didn’t actually time how long I let it knead. The bowl was clean and a nice ball had formed but it may have taken longer than the 5 min stated. I guess I don’t know what happens if one over-kneads dough.
I did the all in one day rise. I have a setting on my counter top oven for dough rise and I let the dough rise for 2 hours, it almost tripled in size. I gently punched the dough down cut it into two pieces and let it rest for about 45 minutes before I tried to stretch it.
Ok – I’ll try to replicate that. For the first rise, it may have gone a little too far (to triple), but I don’t think that would’ve affected the stretchability.
Hi there Perry – Made the dough yesterday and pizza for dinner. I used King Arthur Bread Flour and my stand mixer. The exact amount of ingredients – didn’t add any additional flour or water. I kneaded for just under 5 minutes (speed 2) once the ingredients started to form dough. (after kneading the dough formed a soft ball – cleaned the sides of the bowl, wasn’t really sticky. Kind of the texture when you press into a memory foam item. I let rise on counter for 2 hours (had to run daughter to the mall.) It tripled in size, pushed it down, formed dough ball – lightly covered with plastic wrap and let sit out on counter. I checked in 17 minutes in and it was somewhat soft and squishy. (then had to pick other daughter up from practice) Didn’t get to stretch until about 45 minutes later. It was fairly easy to stretch out. Made a nice large pizza. I will say I like the taste/texture a bit better when I make the dough a day ahead. But the pizza was gobbled up regardless – lol! Let me know if that helps at all? or if you have any other questions!
Thank you for your kind response Christina, I’ll give it another try this week-end.
Can I use bread machine to make dough? Thank you
Hi Linda! I don’t have a bread machine – so I can’t say for sure. Sorry!
What if I just have regular yeast. Not the instant rise. What difference would that make?
Hi Rick – Doesn’t make a huge difference. May rise a little bit more slowly. You want to add the regular yeast to your room temp or a little warmer water (not over 110 degrees F.), stir and let it sit about 5 minutes – will get foamy. This “activates” the regular yeast. (instant yeast is processed in a different way and doesn’t need this step.) Happy pizza baking!
Your bread machine will make pizza dough.