I think homemade pizza dough is like cookies – everyone has their own opinion on what is “best.”
Crispy cookies or ultra-soft, thin or thick, over-baked or under-baked, chocolate chip or raisin (I kid – no one’s favorite cookie is a raisin cookie).
So I’m not saying this is the BEST pizza dough recipe ever, it’s just my personal favorite pizza dough.
(Please. I totally think it’s the best pizza crust ever. I’m just pretending I’ll happily acknowledge differences of opinions).
Some homemade pizza dough recipes are all of three ingredients (water, flour, yeast), and . . .they taste like it to me.
I want something with more flavor.
I don’t want the crust to be an after-thought to the toppings; I want it to be amazing on its own.
I was the child who never ever ate pizza crusts, so I’m kind of shocked every time I make pizza to discover again that I like the crust just as much (and sometimes more) than the toppings themselves.
I like a tiny bit of sweetness, and I want my homemade pizza dough to roll out really thin and be crispy on the edges and not doughy in the center. I also think using some wheat flour makes it a little better than doing all white flour.
I find all-white flour pizza crusts to sometimes be too fluffy (this is the main reason I hated homemade pizza for most of my life – it was always like eating pizza toppings on a giant squishy dinner roll. Bleck).
I clearly have way too many opinions about homemade pizza dough. And I’m not done yet. Not even close.
how to make homemade pizza dough
The whole pizza truth is that if you want killer pizza, you really need a pizza stone. Your homemade pizza just won’t be as good without one. I am in a life-time of debt to my sister-in-law, Megan, for giving me one for Christmas several years ago (well, it was to Bart AND me, but I’m pretty sure he’s never used it once since 2009 when we got it. He’s just the happy beneficiary of excellent pizza).
And a little tip a friend of mine told me that pretty much changed my pizza-making life: pizza crust gets better the longer you wait to cook it. Make it a day or two ahead and let it sit in your fridge.
But hey, I’ve also made homemade pizza dough twenty minutes before I stick it in the oven (completely ignoring the rising time altogether), and it’s delicious that way too.
I roll out my pizza dough on a silicon baking sheet, put all the toppings in and place the whole thing directly on my pizza stone. Then I use some metal tongs to pull it off onto a cookie sheet to cool.
And also, 500 degrees? Do it! (Yes, I’ve set off my fire alarm more than once when I forgot to the turn the oven off as soon as the pizza came out of the oven. I’m brilliant).
Told you I had too many opinions about pizza.
(By the way, the pizza in this picture is this strawberry balsamic pizza with chicken. And it is INCREDIBLY good).
Oh, and one last pro tip for homemade pizza? Cut it with kitchen scissors instead of a pizza cutter. WAY easier.
The best homemade pizza dough
My Favorite Homemade Pizza Dough
Wondering how to make homemade pizza dough? Here is the best homemade pizza dough recipe, plus all the tricks you need to make perfect pizza at home.
- 1 1/4 cups warm water
- 2 teaspoons instant yeast
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 cups white wheat flour if you're doing regular wheat flour, do 1 1/2 cups instead and increase the all-purpose flour to 1 1/2 cups.
In a stand mixer, add all ingredients and let mix for 5 minutes (or 10 minutes if you're doing it by hand). Resist the urge to add more flour. (If you want to use active dry yeast instead of instant yeast, mix the warm water and sugar together, then sprinkle the yeast on top and let it sit for 10 minutes before adding the remaining ingredients).
Spray a bowl with cooking spray, scrape your dough into the bowl and cover. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours and up to 3 days. Two to three hours before you're ready to make your pizza, take it out and let it come to room temperature and rise on the counter. (If you freeze half the dough, put it on the counter about 3-5 hours before you're ready to cook).
Preheat oven to 500 degrees (make sure you start it heating about 30 minutes before you want to put your pizza in so that your stone has time to get hot).
On a sheet of parchment paper or a silicon baking sheet, sprinkle a tablespoon or two of flour, and roll out your crust thinly.
Spread with desired toppings, place your pizza (with the parchment or silicon sheet) carefully on the pizza stone, and bake for 6-10 minutes (mine is always 8 minutes).
Slide the pizza onto a cookie sheet or pizza pan and let cool for a minute or two before slicing and serving.
(from Mel's Kitchen Cafe)
I 100% agree about the pizza stone. I got one for a birthday a few years back and it's changed my pizza eating life. Even those pre-made shells are improved by being on a stone.
Science Teacher Mommy says
My favorite pizza place ever (and I've been to a few) is called Beau Jo's. In Colorado. There are two locations but my favorite is the one up in the mountains. The setting cannot be beat. And the crust.
Oh. The crust. This stuff is so amazing that they serve it with HONEY BUTTER for dipping when you finish your pizza. They understand about flavor. And wheatness. And perfection.
Our new favorite way to cook pizza is on my cast iron skillet on the grill. At yes, 500 degrees. I actually usually cook my crust for a few minutes first, then top. It keeps it from being doughy in the middle and basically broils the toppings. Science Teacher Mommy likes her veggies crunchy.
I will definitely try this recipe though . . . I've been looking for one.
Last thing (because obviously my pizza opinions are strong too): I topped my last pizza with sauteed zucchini and asparagus. Delightful.
Krista Hansen says
I have a great pizza dough recipe that I love too. And it uses bread flour! It has forever changed pizza night at our house! I also agree with pizza stone, 500 degrees, making it the day before and always 8 minutes. I love being able to make my favorite pizza at home. Yummy!
Peaceful Reader says
I also am constantly in search of the perfect pizza crust. I like a little sweetness, like honey, with mine. It should be a compliment to the toppings but not overpowered or overpowering. I think I've tried this one already but will have to remake to remind myself if it was as good as you say!
This was a great pizza crust recipe! I'm making it again for dinner tonight. I came back to also tell you thanks for the parchment paper tip! I had too many years of ruined pizzas from attempting to slide the unbaked pizza onto the stone without toppings falling off or the dough bunching up.
I made pizza every week for 5 years, but got out of the habit when we moved last fall. I mean we still eat pizza regularly, I’m just not the one making it. I also do the super hot oven with a pizza stone. I haven’t used a silicon mat, because mine says not to use over 400degrees. I roll and top the pizza on parchment then put it and the parchment onto the stone. After about 5 minutes I slide the parchment out and let it finish baking directly on the stone. It makes the crust crispier (which I like).
Hi thanks for the recipe! I have a couple of questions…do you use a dough hook when mixing it up? Also, are you putting the pizzastone in the oven while it’s preheating and putting the pizza directly onto the hot stone, or do you put the pizza on a cold (room temp) pizza stone?
Janssen Bradshaw says
Yes, I use the dough hook attachment on my KitchenAid!
And I always leave my pizza stone in the oven (in three years in our last house, I never took it out once), so yes, it’s getting hot the whole time the oven is preheating. A super hot pizza stone is the key to getting a nice crispy crust that isn’t doughy!
Do you mean you leave your pizza stone in the oven even when you’re not using it? When you’re cooking other things? Thinking of getting a pizza stone and wondering where I’d store it. Thanks!
Janssen Bradshaw says
Yes – I never take it out of the oven! It stays in there permanently (and I’ve heard that it helps everything bake more evenly because it absorbs heat and redistributes it).
Oh I’ve got to try this! I have one and hate putting it away in my small kitchen – not putting it away sounds great 😆 Does baking on the silicone mat affect the crust bottom getting crispy? Trying your recipe next pizza night!
Janssen Bradshaw says
It’s probably a little less crispy than it would be without it (or using parchment paper instead), but it’s still fully cooked with great crisp on the outer edge!
Thank you for replying so fast! I’m making it tonight!! Excited to try it!
Using the silicone baking sheet is genius! I always have the hardest time transferring the pizza to the pizza stone, but not anymore. Now to try out your crust recipe. Have you ever made it by hand? I don’t have a stand mixer (trying to decide if I’ll use it enough to justify the space it takes up!).
Janssen Bradshaw says
I haven’t made it by hand, but I’m sure it’ll be fine!
And I wasn’t sure I’d use mine either and now I’ve used it at least once a week and often daily for the last 12 years.
Analese Bell says
I’m not a big fan of homemade pizza because of the dough. It always turns out too doughy and just blah. I tried this the other night and EVERYONE in my family loved it. I think all of the extra tips with the pizza stone, rolling it out super thin, etc were game changing. This will be made on a weekly basis! Thanks!
Quick question for you: do you put your pizza stone on the middle rack of the oven? (I bake most things one rack lower than middle usually, but I feel like raising or lowering it by even one place at 500 degrees could potentially leave me with a very undesired outcome.😬)
Janssen Bradshaw says
It’s on the bottom rack!
Hi! Is this dough initially very sticky? I had a hard time getting it off my hands!!
Thanks for sharing!
Janssen Bradshaw says
I usually leave it fairly sticky and it gets less sticky as it rises (and then I sprinkle some flour on it when I roll it out to bake).
What? We have the same tradition! “Pizza Night Movie Night” were some of my youngest’s first words! 😉 His “Is it Friday yet?” T-shirt is our favorite. This is perfect, thanks for the recipe! Also, what have been your kiddos favorites? Do you have a list of movies that are both kid and adult friendly (both parties enjoy watching). Disney+ is definitely giving us more and more options!
Lynette Ballard says
This recipe sounds amazing. My family would love the whole wheat in it. My husband makes an overnight sourdough that makes amazing pizza. We grill it in the bbq with the pizza stone and it’s our favorite ever!