Jessica DeMay

Pizza Dough Recipe

The secret to making a mouth-wateringly delicious pizza is using the right pizza dough recipe. To create a homemade pizza crust with the flavor and texture of a professionally-made pie, try this fool-proof recipe. Once you taste the results, you’ll never go back to your old pizza dough recipe again.

Would you like to make authentic pizza at home, but aren't sure where to begin? Here you will find what you are looking for and learn how to make delicious different types of pizza, including:

  • Neapolitan pizza
  • American pizza
  • Sicilian pizza
  • Roman pizza
  • Sourdough pizza
  • Pre-fermented Biga pizza

Let's begin with the basics...

Baking the Dough from Scratch

Italian food is all about simplicity. For the standard pizza dough, you will need a few ingredients and a bit of patience to let the dough rise.

This article contains recipes for each type of pizza, but before we delve into the recipes, you should be aware of a few secrets that will turn your pizza making into a success.

How to Mix

In general, it is best to combine all the ingredients, such as flour, water, and yeast, in one bog bowl. But before you throw in everything at once, you have to know there’s a specific order to follow.

Start by mixing flour with yeast and sugar (yes, sugar, it makes the fermentation more natural), then pour water in the bowl and mix everything with a wooden spoon. You should take care how you activate the yeast, it depends on what kind you are using. If you use fresh yeast, you will get a better result if you dissolve it in a glass with a little bit of lukewarm water first. Once your yeast is fully dissolved, add it to the flour along with more water. Then mix all the ingredients using a hand or a wooden spoon until the flour has absorbed all the liquid.

Add more flour if the dough feels too wet, or more water if it feels too dry until a homogenous mixture is obtained.

André Guidon says, "Try to learn dough making without weighting the flour, this way you will always have a consistent product despite any humidity changes and you will learn how the dough should feel."

How to Knead

The best way to knead is by using your hands. Sprinkle some flour on a working table and transfer the dough there. Push the dough with your palm, fold it over itself with your fingers, and pull it back. Repeat this process several times, until the dough looks homogeneous and soft.

If you feel that the dough is sticky, add some more flour to your working surface and continue kneading. Just don't tear the dough, as this will destroy the gluten fibres you have built up through kneading. Work the dough for 15-20 minutes until it appears smooth and springy.

Pro tip: You can test the dough by poking it with a finger. If the dough springs back up, it's ready to bulk ferment.

Do's and Don'ts

DO

  • Let the dough bulk ferment in the fridge for 18-72 hours, depending on how much yeast you've used. Unless you have time to rest the dough overnight, let it rise at room temperature in a bowl covered with plastic wrap for at least six hours.
  • Let your cold fermented dough sit at room temperature for 20 minutes before kneading it.
  • Cook your pizza in an oven designed specifically for pizzas.

DON'T

  • Don't dissolve the yeast in hot or cold water, as this will kill it.
  • Don't roll out dough that springs back too hard. Let it rest for 20-30 minutes and soften up so it can be stretched easily.

Secret Tips for the Perfect Pizza Dough

  • For a crunchy and tasty result, use Tipo 00 flour and add 50% Manitoba.
  • Add a pinch of sugar, it helps facilitate the leavening. When added to yeast, it acts as an activator. As an alternative to sugar, you can use a few grams of honey or malt.

FAQ

How much yeast do I need per 1kg of flour?

When using fresh yeast, the standard measure is 20/25g for 1kg of flour. Using dry yeast, you will need around 7 grams of yeast per kg of flour (about a third of fresh yeast).

You should keep in mind that this will depend on the type of pizza you are making. For example, Neapolitan Pizza only requires 0.1-3 grams of fresh yeast per 1kg of flour.

How long should the dough leaven for? 

Depending on the type of pizza and the amount of yeast, the baking time varies. A standard pizza dough with 20g yeast per 1kg flour takes 3-5 hours to rise at room temperature.

If possible, let the dough rest in the fridge for at least 24 hours. By slowing down the leavening process, your pizza will have more complex flavors and better texture. 

General Instructions for the Pizza Dough Recipes Below

  1. In a bowl, combine the flour and the finely crumbled yeast.
  2. Mix with a wooden spoon while pouring warm water into the bowl.
  3. Continually mix so that it is absorbed by the flour and the yeast is completely dissolved.
  4. Add salt and sugar, then drizzle in extra virgin olive oil while constantly stirring (don't use any oil for Neapolitan Pizza). The dough is called 'no knead' when it is mixed roughly.
  5. Allow the bowl to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes, covered with a kitchen towel.
  6. After that, fold the dough back onto itself and transfer it to the working table. 
  7. Keep kneading the dough. You do not need to worry if the consistency is sticky. Just sprinkle flour on top to make it easier to work with. 
  8. Cover the dough with a kitchen towel and let it rise for another 20 minutes.
  9. Resume the kneading after 20 minutes and keep kneading for 15-20 minutes until the dough feels springy.
  10. Get yourself a decent pizza oven. Your pizza making experience will be limited by conventional electric ovens. Cook your pizzas at temperatures ranging between 450 to 500°F for best results.
  11. Let the dough rise at room temperature for at least 4 hours, or in the fridge for at least 24 hours, before returning it to the bowl.

Recipes for each type of pizza

Neapolitan Pizza

Neapolitan Pizza

Traditional Neapolitan Pizza has a fluffy crust and crunchy base, and it is cooked in a wood-fired pizza oven. The dough is the result of a long leavening process. Italian food is delicious because patience is the secret ingredient.

If you are cooking it at home, set the oven at 500°F and use a pre-heated pizza stone.

Ingredients for 4 balls of dough:

  • 482g Tipo 00
  • 17g fine sea salt
  • 0.48g fresh yeast or 0.16g instant dry yeast.
  • 289ml lukewarm water

Tip: if you need to make more than 4 pizzas, use our pizza dough calculator.

  1. Mix the flour, salt, and yeast with a wooden spoon or dough whisk in a large bowl.
  2. Add water and mix until the flour absorbs all the water.
  3. Turn and knead the dough until it looks homogeneous. 
  4. Rest the mixture (bulk ferment) for 18 to 24 hours, until it has at least doubled in volume.
  5. Divide the dough into four equally sized pieces on your flour-dusted working surface. 
  6. Roll each piece into a ball.
  7. Refrigerate for 24 to 48 hours.
  8. At least one hour before you plan to cook the pizza, take the dough out of the refrigerator. 

American Pizza Dough

american pizza

Pizza dough made in New York City is a close relative of Neapolitan-style dough-still thin-crust, but thicker than its Italian cousin.

Ingredients for four 14 inch pizzas

  • 500g all-purpose or bread flour
  • 300ml water
  • 3.5g instant dry yeast 
  • 10g salt
  • A pinch of sugar
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  1. Stir the flour, salt, and yeast mixture into the water and mix until all the flour is incorporated.
  2. Add oil and knead for about 4 to 5 minutes.
  3. Separate the dough into four balls and let them rise for 30 minutes at room temperature.
  4. After this, place the dough balls into an airtight container and refrigerate overnight.
  5. Let the dough rest at room temperature for one hour before stretching. 

Sicilian Pizza Dough Recipe

sicilian pizza

This classic Sicilian style pizza recipe is cooked in a large sheet pan. It is thick and soft, and its texture is similar to focaccia.

Ingredients for a large pan 

  • 500g all-purpose flour
  • 10g sea salt
  • A pinch of sugar
  • 3 large tablespoons of olive oil
  • 10g fresh yeast 
  • 300g lukewarm water
  1. Mix flour, yeast, salt, olive oil, and a pinch of sugar with just enough water to create a homogenous mixture. 
  2. Refrigerate the dough for at least 24 hours. 
  3. Cover the bottom and edges of a half-sheet pan with olive oil.
  4. Transfer the dough to the pan and stretch it with your hands. Allow the dough to relax, uncovered, for about 10 to 15 minutes, then stretch it again. 
  5. Let the dough rise in the pan for at least an hour before you add the toppings. 

Roman Pizza Dough Recipe

roman pizza

Roman pizza has a paper thin crust and just melts in your mouth.

Ingredients for three large pizzas

  • 340g Tipo 00 flour
  • 100g durum flour
  • 9g salt
  • 260ml water
  • 1g fresh yeast
  1. Add flour to a bowl.
  2. Dissolve the yeast in 100 ml of the water.
  3. Stir in the yeast mixture into the flour along with 400 ml of water.
  4. Add the remaining ingredients and mix until it appears homogeneous and all the water has been fully absorbed.
  5. Knead the dough for 20 minutes on a work surface.
  6. Bulk ferment for 30 minutes.
  7. Divide the dough into four 180g pieces.
  8. And let them ferment for at least six hours in an airtight container.

No-knead Sourdough Pizza Dough Recipe

Sourdough Pizza

The crispiness and chewiness of sourdough pizza are definitely worth the extra effort. It's a dough that bakes perfectly every time and holds all your favorite toppings. Please be aware that this dough may take up to 4 days to make.

Ingredients for four pizzas

  • 500g tipo 00 flour
  • 100g sourdough starter discard (100% hydration)
  • 15g sea salt
  • 350ml water
  1. Before beginning this recipe, be sure to refresh your sourdough with equal parts water and flour and let rest for 8 hours.
  2. Pour 350ml of lukewarm water into a bowl and add 100g of sourdough starter.
  3. Dissolve the sourdough in the water until it appears milky.
  4. Combine the flour with the sea salt and stir until all the water is absorbed.
  5. Cover and let it rest for 2 hours.
  6. Dump the dough onto a work surface, roll into a ball, and bulk ferment for 6 hours.
  7. Divide into four equal pieces and roll into balls.
  8. Allow them to rest at room temperature for 2 hours before stretching.

Biga Pizza Dough Recipe

biga pizza

Biga is a form of prefermentation used in Italian baking. Pizza is much lighter and more digestible with this method, which uses only a small amount of fresh yeast.

Ingredients for four pizzas

For the Biga

  • 600g Tipo 00 flour
  • 300ml water
  • 3gr fresh yeast or 1g dry yeast

For the Dough

  • 900g Biga
  • 100ml water
  • 15g sea salt

Making the Biga

  1. Mix 50ml of the water with the yeast.
  2. Fill a large container with the flour.
  3. Slowly pour in the water and yeast mixture.
  4. Shake the plastic container to mix everything together.
  5. Let it rest for one hour at room temperature with a plastic wrap on top.
  6. Put it in the fridge and let it ferment for another 48 hours.

Making the Dough

  1. One hour before you start making the dough, remove your Biga dough from the fridge.
  2. In the container with the dough, add the water and the salt.
  3. Mix everything together and let it ferment at room temperature for at least six hours.
  4. Divide into 250g pieces and form into balls.
  5. Before you stretch them, let them rest for two hours.
Jessica DeMay
Jessica is the lead content creator of Dishcrawl. She has lived in Italy (Napoli) for 7 years and has since become absolutely obsessed with pizza.
© 2021 Dishcrawl. All rights reserved.
Dishcrawl participates in various affiliate programs, which means we may get paid commissions on certain products purchased through our links to retailer sites.
TwitterPinterestInstagram
crossmenu