Want to make the best pizza dough at home? The simplest ingredients make the tastiest pizza dough! This easy pizza dough recipe crisps up easily when baked and works beautifully as the base any kind of pizza pie. All you need are just 7 ingredients and a little more than an hour to make this recipe. Makes 4 rounds.
2024 Update: This recipe was originally shared in November 2011. The recipe and post have been updated to include new photos, as well as more tips and tricks. I hope you love this pizza dough as much as my family does.
I was a kid who always enjoyed a good pizza pie, but I didn’t realize how much I loved pizza and the art of making it until I lived in Italy.
The summer before my senior year of college, I traipsed over to Italia with about a hundred other art students from the University of Georgia and lived in Cortona, a tiny Etruscan town atop a Tuscan hill.
Yes, it is the town that Under the Tuscan Sun was written in and based on. And yes, I met Frances Mayes while I resided there. And yes, she is awesome.
That summer, I learned of my love for all things Italian. Most days, I grabbed a slice or two of the eggplant pizza from the tiny pizzeria in Piazza della Repubblica before heading back up to the dorms for siesta.
I also ate the best pizza of my life in Florence at a little place called Semolina when my friend Gabby and I were stranded on the outskirts of the city, unsure how to reach our friends on the other side because there was a cab strike that day. The hotel manager felt bad for us and recommended a place that blew us away. I still have dreams about the veggie pie we consumed there. No joke.
So, needless to say, when the summer was over, I was sad to come home because there was absolutely no way I would be able to find Italian food so delicious in the States.
I went through a phase where I attempted to learn all foods Italian, and while my Italian cooking was good, it was never as wonderful as the dishes I loved in Italy. And after a year went by, I had all but forgotten my love for the simple and fantastic Italian cuisine and focused my efforts elsewhere.
However, when I moved to Mississippi for a job at a newspaper, I lived alone and began to come up with all kinds of things to prepare since I don’t like eating the same old things day after day. I suddenly re-discovered homemade pizza, and I fell in love with the pre-made box mix where you simply mix water in with their dough.
Why I love this recipe:
When I moved back to Tennessee, I decided to try my hand at making homemade pizza dough. Sure, it would take a little time, but certainly, it would be tasty.
Turns out, I fell even more in love with homemade pizza and have been perfecting the recipe ever since. And it’s pretty damn easy to make, too, which is always a plus.
All you really need with this dough is time, and the best part is that you can freeze whatever you don’t use immediately.
So let’s make my best pizza dough recipe, shall we?
What you need to make this recipe:
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- A large mixing bowl
- Liquid measuring cup
- Kitchen scale
- Standing mixer or stand mixer
- Rimmed sheet pan
Let’s talk ingredients!
In addition to the tools above, you’re going to need some ingredients to make this recipe, too! Chances are, you might already have some of them in your fridge or pantry. Scroll down to the recipe card for the full measurements and instructions.
There are a few pizza dough ingredients you need to pick up at the store…
- Water — heat it up in a saucepan on the stovetop or in the microwave until it’s warmed through, but not hot to touch. If it’s too warm, it will kill the yeast.
- Extra virgin olive oil — or regular olive oil, if you’d prefer
- Granulated sugar — or turbinado sugar, which is what I used in this original recipe. I’ve also used the same amount of honey in this pizza dough. The important thing is that we need some sweetness for the yeast to consume!
- Kosher salt — a medium grain kosher salt is my go-to. Similarly sized sea salt is awesome here, too.
- All-purpose flour — we keep unbleached AP flour in our household, but regular AP flour works, too. This is not the same thing as bread flour.
- Whole wheat flour — I love the texture this adds to our pizza dough and how it adds a lovely chewiness to the crust.
- Active dry yeast — or instant yeast, if that’s what you have on hand.
How to make homemade pizza crust
You start off in two separate bowls. You may also do this in a stand mixer.
Combine the wet ingredients. Pour the warm water, olive oil, salt and sugar into a liquid measuring cup. Stir until the sugar has completely dissolved.
Combine the dry ingredients. In the larger bowl, measure out the all purpose flour, whole wheat flour and active dry yeast. Whisk together.
Combine the wet and dry ingredients. Pour the liquid into the dry mixture.
Stir with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula until just mixed.
You can then use a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook to knead the dough. You may also turn it out onto a floured countertop to knead by hand, if you’d prefer.
It will be sticky to touch right now, but as you work it, it will become less tacky.
Knead the dough until it is elastic and completely combined. This should take about 5-7 minutes.
This process of kneading helps with gluten formation and development. It will ensure the crust has the right strength and structure, which will impact the texture of it.
Divide the dough into four evenly-sized balls. (I like to use a kitchen scale* (affiliate link) to ensure they are about the same size, but you can eyeball it.)
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and add a sprinkle of cornmeal on the parchment.
Place the dough balls on the parchment paper. Cover with plastic wrap or a damp kitchen towel, and let it proof for about 45 minutes, or until the dough balls have doubled in size.
DID YOU KNOW?
The proof time will be dependent on how warm your kitchen is. If your kitchen is cooler, it will take longer. If your kitchen is warmer, the pizza dough rises a little faster. Keep an eye on your dough!
Once the dough has risen, you can freeze them or you can make pizza immediately. Your choice!
How to freeze easy homemade pizza dough
Wrap the risen dough tightly in plastic wrap. Press into a flatter round.
Place in the freezer and freeze until solid. This will keep for up to 3-4 months.
Thaw in the refrigerator until workable, then roll out and make the pizza.
How to make pizza with homemade pizza dough
Sprinkle cornmeal onto a pizza pan or a flat surface in your kitchen. You can also do this on a lightly floured surface.
Use your hands to shape the pizza dough. Roll out with a rolling pin (or a wine bottle.)
We like to make ours extremely thin, but you can leave yours thicker, if desired.
Bake on a hot pizza stone or in a pizza pan for 10-15 minutes in a 425F oven until the crust is crispy and cooked through.
More pizza toppings to try:
- Additional cheeses, like parmesan cheese or even goat cheese
- Vegetables, like onions, bell peppers, mushrooms, garlic, etc.
- Protein, like salami, ground pork, etc.
- Fresh herbs, like basil and oregano
Frequently Asked Questions
If you don’t want to get an arm workout in while kneading the dough, use a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook. This is a great way to make it easier and less labor-intensive.
This pizza dough recipe calls for flour, water, oil, salt, sugar and yeast. These are the basic ingredients for most pizza doughs.
We use a combination of all-purpose flour and whole wheat flour in this recipe. Other recipes call for bread flour.
More pizza recipes to try:
- Pork and Pineapple Pizza
- Pepperoni Pizza Rolls
- Puff Pastry Pizza
- How to Grill Pizza
- Grilled Hawaiian Pizza
And that, my friends, is how you make delicious homemade pizza dough.
Easy as pie, no?
Here’s my recipe for you…
Simple and Delicious Pizza Dough
- 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour 270g
- 1 cup whole wheat flour 130g
- 2 ¼ teaspoons active dry yeast 1 packet / 9g
- 1 cup warm water
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 40g
- 2 teaspoons granulated sugar 10g
- 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt 7g
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- Combine the AP flour, the whole wheat flour and yeast. Mix the ingredients together with a whisk and set aside. You may also do this in the bowl of a stand mixer.
- Combine the warm water, olive oil, sugar and salt in a liquid measuring cup or another bowl. Stir until the sugar has completely dissolved into the liquid.
- Pour the wet ingredients into the flour mixture. Stir with a wooden spoon until the mixture begins coming together.
- Turn out onto a floured counter and knead for five minutes, working the dough until it is elastic. You may also do this in a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook.
- Divide the dough into four evenly sized balls. Splash them with a little bit of olive oil, place them on a parchment-lined sheet pan. Let rise for 45 minutes (or until the dough has doubled in size.)
- Once the dough has doubled in size, you may roll out the dough to make a pizza OR freeze it for later.
- To make a pizza: Preheat the oven to 425°F. Let the pizza stone (or the pan you'll be using) preheat in the oven, too.
- Lightly flour the surface of a flat counter, and roll out a round of pizza dough.
- Once the oven and pizza stone are heated, remove the pizza stone from the oven using an oven mitt.
- Transfer the pizza dough to the hot pizza stone. Swirl on pizza sauce and any toppings you desire, then transfer into the oven.
- Bake the pizza for 10-15 minutes, checking every few minutes to confirm the toppings and crust are not burning.
- Once the pizza is cooked through and the dough is crisp, remove from the oven, cut into slices and enjoy warm!
Erin Parker is a Southern gal living in Texas with her husband and two daughters. She started The Speckled Palate to share what she was cooking as a newlywed… and over the years, it’s evolved to capture her love for hosting. Specifically, the EASIEST, lowest key entertaining because everyone deserves to see their people and connect over good food. Learn more about her…