Are you looking for an Easy Basic Pizza Dough Recipe? I created this dough that has everything I think a great pizza dough should have, a great flavor while being both crunchy and chewy
It's time for a Pizza Party!
Let's admit it. The toppings are nice, but the crust makes the pie!
And so my search began. Looking for a good Basic Pizza Dough recipe. After some trial and error, I came up with this dough that has everything I want. Great flavor while being both crunchy and chewy. Perfect! So convenient to make it in a bread machine, but you could do it by hand, with a food processor, or a standing mixer with a dough hook. And I'll tell you how.
BASIC PIZZA DOUGH RECIPE INGREDIENTS
- 3 cups (375g) flour - Bread flour is preferred
- Active dry yeast
- Hot water -105º to 115ºF
- 1 ½ teaspoons sugar - needed to wake up that yeast
- 1 ½ tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
CAN I SUBSTITUTE REGULAR ALL-PURPOSE FLOUR FOR THE BREAD FLOUR?
Sure you can, however, the crust will not have the same chew.
Bread flour contains more protein than all-purpose, usually about 11% more. This results in more gluten. Gluten is what gives bread (especially french bread) its chew and rise. Nooks and crannies.
All-purpose's lower protein content means it may yield a slightly wetter dough or batter. Gluten-free all-purpose flour blends perform similarly to regular all-purpose, and can generally be substituted one-to-one.
So you can have your gluten-free pizza dough.
Do I need to prove my Yeast?
The short answer when using active dry yeast is NO, you don't have to prove it. It was often said you did, you had to "wake it up" so to speak, but most bakers today will say it's not necessary. As long as the shelf date on your yeast is current, you should be fine to just add it to the dry ingredients.
You will see that I used Red Star Premier Classique active dry yeast. To tell you the truth, this yeast is normally used in brewing and winemaking. BUT we were (are?) in the middle of a pandemic and when lockdowns first started the first things to go were toilet paper, flour, yeast, pasta, beans (dried and canned), and of course, hand and counter sanitizers. The ONLY yeast I could find was the Red Star Premier Classique, so I did a little research and YES, it works fine for baking. As well as winemaking. So my options are open.
HOW TO MAKE THE DOUGH FOR THIS BASIC PIZZA RECIPE
- In a Bread Machine - the easiest way of all. First off, you have the perfect environment for rising the dough. Secondly, you just put your ingredients into the machine according to the manufacturer's directions, turn it on, and walk away until it's time to roll it out.
- Free Standing Mixer with a Dough Hook - Almost as easy as a bread machine, but the dough rise may be a bit more challenging, depending on how warm/cold your kitchen is. To properly rise the dough you need to place your container in a draft-free, warm area.
- A Food Processor - Really, all a food processor does is mix the dough up for you. The rest needs to be done by hand, but as shown below, by hand can be very therapeutic and good for your soul.
- By Hand - Some people, myself included when I have the time, enjoy kneading the dough. It can be very calming and therapeutic. Plus it works for those hands! You just need to make the dough by hand too.
I used my free-standing mixer with a dough hook.
Cover the basic pizza dough and allow it to rise for about 1 ½ hours.
Once the dough has risen, cut it into halves (or smaller if making mini pizza) and form it into a ball. Let this ball rest, covered in plastic wrap, for at least 10 minutes.
Using your hands, start gently from the center of the dough to push it and pull it into a round.
Unless you are a master at pizza dough throwing, you may find a rolling pin helpful in getting the crust thin enough, and round enough.
Top your Basic Pizza Crust with your toppings of choice
TIPS FOR SUCCESS
- Preheat your oven to 500ºF for at least 30 minutes. Most commercial pizza ovens run 700ºF plus, so get your oven as hot as you can. (You may need to disable your smoke detectors for this).
- A pizza stone, heated as the oven is heating, is an added plus for getting a crispy bottom.
- If you don't have a pizza stone, try for a pizza pan that has holes in it to allow the heat to get to the crust.
- If you must use a cookie sheet, use a heavy ply one and heat it for at least 15 minutes, then carefully slide your dough onto it.
- Bake your pizza in the bottom third of the oven, closer to the heat source is best.
- Weighing your flour will yield consistent results.
- Keep your sauce and any toppings at least ½ inch away from the edge of the pie to allow the outer crust to rise, the topped crust will stay flat.
- If your dough is fighting with you when you try to roll it out, springing back into its original form, let it sit for a few minutes to rest - give it a short time out to allow the gluten to relax.
BASIC PIZZA DOUGH STORAGE
- In the refrigerator - this dough will keep in the refrigerator for up to a week. Place it in a zip-top bag, and press to remove as much air as you can.
- In the freezer - store wrapped dough for up to 90 days in the freezer. Thaw in the refrigerator before using.
Now that you have the perfect dough, how about a family night pizza party?
Make it a complete meal by adding one of these delicious salads
Baby Greens Salad with Light Balsamic Vinaigrette
Shaved Asparagus Salad with Fennel
Basic Pizza Dough Recipe
- Bread Machine optional
- Stand Mixer with dough hook
- Rolling Pin
- 3 cups 375g bread flour
- 1 ½ teaspoons salt
- 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons warm 105 to 115º F water
- 1 ½ teaspoons active dry yeast
- 1 ½ teaspoons sugar
- 1 ½ tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- Choose your method to prepare the doughIf using a bread machinePlace the ingredients into the bread machine according to manufacturers' directions (usually liquids, salt, sugar, flour, then yeast) and turn on the machine to pizza dough. Let the machine do the work while you kick back and enjoy the kids, folding laundry, or if you are lucky enough, having a cocktail, beer or glass of wine.
- If using a free-standing mixerMix the dry ingredients in the bowl of your mixer that has been fitted with a dough hook. Turn on medium-low speed, add the liquid and then let the food processor do the kneading for about 10 minutes. Rub extra virgin olive oil over the ball, place in a large bowl, cover with plastic wrap and allow to double in size, about 1 ½ hours.
- If using a food processorPlace the dry ingredients in the bowl of the food processor. Add the olive oil and then, with the processor running add the liquid down the shoot and process until a ball is formed. Turn the ball out onto a well-floured counter or board and knead for 15 to 20 minutes, or until smooth and elastic. Rub extra virgin olive oil over the ball, place in a large bowl, cover with plastic wrap and allow to double in size, about 1 ½ hours.
- If doing by hand: Same as a food processor, but you have to mix the ingredients by hand before you get to turn it out and knead it.
- Once the dough has risen, separate it into 2 portions. Using your hands, hold and fold the dough until you have made a ball, with no seams. Use your fingers to roll the dough into itself. Set the dough on the counter and let sit for 10 minutes.
- After the dough has rested, place it onto a floured surface and gently, with the tips of your fingers, starting in the middle and turning the dough as you work, work the dough into about a 6-inch circle. Then take a lightly floured rolling pin, and again, working from the middle, roll the dough into a 10 to 12 inch round. Place the round on a pizza stone or pizza screen. Top with sauce and your favorite toppings; place in an oven that has been preheated to 500 degrees for at least 30 minutes and preferably has preheated pizza stones for you to slide onto, and cook, 10 to 15 minutes, or until crisp and bubbly.
Great crust...easy to make. Crank your oven up to 500 degrees and you have a great homemade pizza!