Introduction: Amazing Homemade Pizza Dough

Picture of Amazing Homemade Pizza Dough

Pizza! Everyone loves a good pizza, well at least almost everyone. :) In this instructable I will show you how to make an amazing homemade pizza dough. This dough is incredible, it tastes just like what you will get at the restaurants! A friend of mine has been making pizza for over 20 years and he showed me this homemade recipe. It is my new go-to recipe for pizza dough. Homemade pizza doesn't have to be hard, join with me as I show you how to make an amazing homemade pizza! Let's get baking!

If you have any questions or comments, put them down below and I will get back to you as soon as I can.

Follow the easy steps below, or watch the video tutorial, or do both!

Step 1: Ingredients

Picture of Ingredients

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups of all purpose flour (can use bread flour)
  • 1 cup of semolina flour (Usually found on same aisle as all purpose flour or online)

**You can leave out the Semolina Flour, if you do just replace it with another cup of all purpose flour or bread flour, it just won't taste quite like mine, but it will still be good

  • 2 cups of water
  • 2 tsp of salt
  • 2 Tablespoons of olive oil
  • 2 1/2 tsp of active dry yeast (or 1 packet instant yeast)
  • 1 1/2 tsp of sugar
  • Cornmeal (couple pinches for pizza pan)

Toppings:

  • Your favorite pizza sauce (store bought or home made)
  • Mozzarella cheese or pizza blend (mozzarella, provolone, and Jack)
  • Pepperoni

***Use your favorite toppings (some of mine are bacon, onions, sausage, bell peppers, olives, etc.)

Tools:

  • Pizza pan
  • Whisk
  • Bowls
  • Wooden
  • Spoon
  • Damp cloth
  • Plastic Wrap

Step 2: Proof the Yeast

Picture of Proof the Yeast

To start off let's proof the yeast. To do this, heat up your water in the microwave to about 105 to 115 degrees F. Then add the sugar and the yeast. Next use a whisk and mix it around a little bit. Now just set it aside for about 5 to 10 minutes until it gets nice and foamy. The yeast is active and ready to go!

Step 3: Adding Oil

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Now we just add your oil to the bowl with the yeast and stir it with a whisk.

Step 4: Combine Dry Ingredients

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Now let's combine our dry ingredients, by adding the semolina flour and the salt to the all purpose flour. You can use bread flour as well if you like. The semolina flour will help make the dough chewier. Although you can substitute the semolina with all purpose flour if you like, it just won't be quite the same. But it will still be good.

Step 5: Mix in Dry Ingredients

Picture of Mix in Dry Ingredients

Now we just mix in our dry ingredients slowly with the yeast mixture, maybe about a 4th of it at a time. You can start with your whisk, then move to using a wooden spoon. After awhile it will get hard to use even the wooden spoon, and the dough will form.

Step 6: Knead the Dough

Picture of Knead the Dough

After the dough forms, I move from the wooden spoon to my hands. Start in the bowl, then pour out the dough onto your surface. Now continue adding your flour as you knead. Push down on the dough, then turn it a quarter turn, fold it toward you and push down with your palm, keep doing that for about 8 minutes. You will probably wind up with flour left over. Add flour as needed to keep it from sticking.

Step 7: Let the Dough Rise

Picture of Let the Dough Rise

Next we let the dough rise. We put some olive oil in a large bowl, about half of a tablespoon or about two teaspoons, then using our fingers make sure to coat the inside of the bowl. Now we add the dough and coat the dough with the oil in the bowl. Now we place some plastic wrap and then a damp cloth on top. Place the bowl in a warm area and let it rise for and hour to an hour and a half.

Step 8: Roll Out the Dough

Picture of Roll Out the Dough

Now we preheat the oven to 500 degrees F. Our dough has risen so we take it out and cut it into equal parts. This recipe makes 3 medium sized thinner crust pizzas or two large thick crust pizzas. You can flip the dough in the air like the pros, or use a rolling pin to get the dough into the pizza shape.

Step 9: Add Dough to Pizza Pan

Picture of Add Dough to Pizza Pan

Now we add some cornmeal to our pizza pan. This will keep the pizza from sticking. Although it is not completely necessary. The pan I am using is a nonstick pizza pan. The cornmeal does help it to get that classic bottom of the crust that you get at restaurants. Stretch out the pizza dough as needed to fill up the pan, then pinch the edges up a little bit.

Step 10: Add Those Toppings

Picture of Add Those Toppings

Next we just need to add our favorite toppings. I like to start with some olive oil drizzled on the top. Then add a light covering of pizza sauce. Then our cheese, I use a pizza blend of mozzarella, provolone, and jack. Now the pepperoni! Then bake it in a preheated oven (500 degrees F) for 7 to 12 minutes, until the crust is a light golden brown color and the cheese is all melted. Enjoy!

Step 11: Video Tutorial

Picture of Video Tutorial

Comments

ClaudioP34 (author)2017-02-23

As I promised you, I checked your pizza dough recipe. The ingredients are right but I think 1 h for rising is not enough. I use about 3-4 g of yeast for 500 g of flour, do the dough like you do until step 7, then I let it rise for about 20 hours (I prepare the dough the day before). If you reduce the amount of yeast, you can leave the dough rising longer. The wife of a friend of mine manage to reach 48 h. Or a bit more yeast, and you can prepare the dough in the morning. But do not let it rise less than 6 hours, 1 hour is not enough.

Then, about 1 or 2 h before cooking, I take out the dough and cut it into equal parts, then roll them again to form balls, and let the balls of dough sitting for 1-2 h.

Better avoiding the rolling pin (the pin makes the bubbles of gas escaping from the dough), just shape the pizza using your hands and applying few pressure: there is not a real need to flip it into the air!

The oven must be pre-heated at max power (500 degrees F is good!)

A trick: try adding the cheese after the pizza has been in the oven for some minutes. But maybe the American pizza cheese is different from the Italian mozzarella (the one for pizza, that is different from the one to be eaten raw).

That's my recipe for homemade pizza, let's try and let me know. Apart the rising time, the rest of your Instructable is like I do it.

About the Italian pizza you have at the restaurant, we do not have one style of pizza: the pizza in Rome is thin and crusty, the pizza in Naples is thicker. There are also some restaurant in Rome that cook a kind of thick pizza, but different from the one in Naples. And the restaurant have much powerful ovens too, that reach more than 500 F.

We do not have "pepperoni pizza" too, indeed in Italian the word "peperoni" means "peppers": years ago I brought some American friends to a pizza restaurant in Rome, and one of them ordered the "pizza con peperoni" thinking it was a "pepperoni pizza". You can imagine his face when he saw a pizza without tomato sauce, only with mozzarella and slices of peppers! If in Italy you want something similar to pepperoni pizza, you shall ask for a "Diavola" (Devil's pizza), which is with a kind of hot spicy salami.

Awesome thanks for sharing Claudio!! I wish my oven got hotter then 500! haha I have made this recipe several times and have only ever let it rise 1 to 2 hrs or until doubled, I will let it sit out and rise a lot longer next time. Good idea on the rolling pin. Since I am not a good pizza flipper. The last time I made it about 3 weeks ago, I did just stretch it with my fingers. Oh to visit Italy some day and try the food!!! haha :) Thanks again for your tips!

Home ovens don't go hotter, mine reach 250°C, that is a bit less than 500 °.

Flipping the dough in the air is mainly for show :-) I heard that flipping give a best "texture" to the Naples-stile pizza, but all the best pizza restaurants I tried in Italy are not flipping the dough in the air.

If you are going to visit Italy, let me know!

That makes total sense about the dough flipping. haha, it does look really cool! I live in a town home right now, when I buy a house with a back yard I am totally going to build a brick oven for making pizza and breads. I will definitely let you know if I visit Italy! It would be fun to bring my camera gear and film a couple of episodes over there! haha

ClaudioP34 (author)2017-02-23

I forgot, the semolina flour ("semola") is a good trick also! You can use the semolina even instead of the cornmeal for the pizza pan.

Yes! I recently discovered the art of adding semolina flour to the dough. I like the corn meal on the bottom haha because it resembles what the local pizza shops seem to use on the bottom of theirs. But I wouldn't only buy cornmeal for that haha, so if I ran out, I will just use semolina on the bottom too! Thanks for the tip!

grizzlybear52 (author)2016-08-06

Since there is only 2 of us now, we will need to freeze some of the dough for another time. When do you freeze the dough? Before it rises or after?

Great question! After it has fully risen. Then divide it up into balls, lightly spray with kitchen spray, then place in a freezer bag, squish all of the air out, then place it in the freezer. You can freeze it for up to 3 months or so. When you want to make another pizza, take the dough out of the freezer the night before, and let it thaw in the refrigerator, then take it out of the fridge about 30 minutes before stretching out the dough to make the pizza. Good luck!!

JulieP105 (author)2016-08-03

Make sure your yeast is active and not old. That's why you proof it before adding all your ingredients

Yes thank you, I explained that in step 2. :) I probably could have given a better explanation though.

Sai 22 made it! (author)2016-07-23

I think less water would have been better. I had to add a whole lot of flour. About to find out how it tastes, looks good though. Thanks

AnnabellaMarie (author)Sai 222016-08-02

The amount of flour will vary depending on the weather in your area. On a humid day, you might have to change your ratio a little, for example.

Absolutely right!

Great glad you made it! Really? I found the amount of water to be spot on when I made the dough. How did it taste??

Do you have weights for the dry ingredients? Sai 22 might have used flour that had been stirred up and not as dense as needed. Weighing dry ingredients for baking is always more accurate than cups and spoons. I use strong bread flour but think I'll try your recipe. Homemade pizza dough is great and your photos look good too.

No I don't, I haven't ever weighed my flour by going the grams route. I just get the cups and use it, I don't use all the flour. But I bake my yeast doughs by feel, so I have never really had an issue with it. Thanks! Try it out and let me know what you think! :) I just made it again a few days ago, delish!

Sai 22 (author)Sai 222016-07-24

I forgot to take a photo.of it after it came ouy of the oven. It was ad thick and spongy as the classic Pizza Hut deep pan recipe. Awesome.
I will try with less water next time.
Thanks again

Thanks for sharing!

SuzyM1 (author)2016-07-21

I let my dough proof overnight or for 12 to 14 hours. It makes a wonderful no knead dough. You can also make bread from it in the oven or a French (Dutch) oven.

Just make it before bedtime cover in an oiled bowl, preferably wood, and the next morning you have a nice proofed dough you can use in the day or evening. : )

PattyP17 (author)SuzyM12016-07-24

Wow. Where I live, even though the house is very cool, the yeast would proof, then fall and not rise again in that amount of time.

SuzyM1 (author)PattyP172016-07-25

I have never heard of dough falling after this amount of time. Some people even proof their dough for 24 hours. In the winter I put the covered dough in the warmest room of the house.
You can put it on the oven with the light on also.
This dough can even be proofed in the the refrigerator so there may be a problem with your ingredients or other issue if your dough is falling. That just does not normally happen at all unless the dough is moved or tampered with in some way.
In Italy, it is very common for dough to be proofed overnight or longer.
I doubt proofing has anything to do with where you live. : )

Great tip! Thanks for sharing.

Rongdallas1 (author)2016-07-21

I didn't get all the way through the comments yet. But I like a very thin crust.

What about baking it on Himalayan salt, I have not checked the price yet.

It might be a good way to bake many things.

I don't have any experience with Himalayan salt. Try it out and let me know! :) For a thinner crust just use a little less dough and stretch it thinner, should do the trick.

Okay, I ordered a salt block from Amazon. They had the best price and it will only take about a little over a week to get delivered.

Great! Let me know how it goes!!

I will ask a pizza restaurant in my area how they make the different skins and really see what the method is.
They want to sell restaurant to me but I am already retired, so it is out of the question.

sockdujour made it! (author)2016-07-24

Great instructions! Thank you for sharing. The dough was much easier to make than I thought it would be. And it tasted great. My Chicago born & raised pizza snob husband really liked it and requested I make it again. Soon. But maybe with more "traditional" toppings than corn.

Well thank you!! :) I am glad you both liked it! That was a bit brave to put corn on it, I don't think I have ever tried a pizza with corn as a topping. haha :)

PattyP17 (author)2016-07-24

Ahhh! This came along at the right time. I was just thinking in the last few days that I needed a home made pizza dough recipe! Thanks!

You are welcome! Let me know how it turns out! :)

oldmitch (author)2016-07-23

Looks great! Two things I found that help with pizza and bread baking, 1) let the dough rest 15 minutes or so after mixing the dry and wet ingredients and combining them, then do your kneading, but 5 minutes is usually enough. 2) weighing the flour(s) will help make your pizza consistent. The variation of humidity really can vary your results. Your pizza looks very good. I started using semolina just a little while ago. It does make a difference!

Well thank you! And thanks for the tips, I will try those next time for sure.

McScribble (author)2016-07-22

I love how much you love cooking (and eating the finished product :). I've been making homemade pizzas for our family every Friday night for a long time using a recipe I got in a book from Goodwill and have never seen a need to switch, but I want to compare it to this one. Hadn't heard or thought of substituting semolina. Not sure if I can get it where we live now in Europe but I really want to try this variation out. It looks great. Thanks for sharing!

Well thank you! I appreciate it! Definitely try it out and let me know how it turns out. If you click on the highlighted semolina flour it will take you to an amazon link where you can buy the semolina. May or may not be worth it for you.

hmmm I might want to try this.. thank you! :D

Awesome! Let me know if you do and how you like it!

boatmakertoo (author)2016-07-21

Basic bread dough with olive oil (or corn oil, or canola....) becomes pizza dough. The semolina is a nice touch. The oil makes the dough stretchable in the traditional manner. The problem that I have with the unfrozen store bought dough is that if not used quickly, it ferments in the container and the container bursts leaving a gooey mess in the refrigerator. The revealed recipe takes very little time and is well worth the effort. Sauce is not necessarily king because one can make a pizza with no sauce at all. I sometimes use thinly sliced tomatoes with the juicy parts removed on top of the cheese and add partially cooked bacon strips on top of the slices. The oven finishes the bacon. Only cover about 1/3 to 1/2 of the crust with tomato slices or the whole thing gets very soggy.

I guess the sauce is the king phrase only applies to those that like tomato based sauce. You are right, though, I have had awesome pizzas that didn't have any kind of tomato based sauce. Like a BBq chicken pizza..mmm. My personal favorite though is a tomato based sauce. mmm partially cooked bacon slices, your toppings ideas sounds great, I will give it a try next time. Thanks for sharing!

VincentV37 (author)2016-07-21

I Hate to Ruin anyone's Dreams of Awesome pie.....So Anyone Listening, ignore This ! Actually Frozen Pizza Crust works Great, but there are Variations. Using Biscuit Mix, Pancake Mix, and Cake Mix.....Believe it or Not ! However....Nothing Beats Homemade, as Long as it is Browned Before Final Product ! Next to the Dough, the Sauce is King.

I actually just made a pizza with an old frozen bread dough that I had in the freezer for a long time. It wound up being pretty good too. haha and yes sauce is king next to the dough. I have a recipe for a good sauce, maybe I will showcase that soon.

VincentV37 (author)2016-07-21

I Love Pizza......it seems Better Later.....Like an Hour or So.......But like a Maugwei.....Do Not feed me Chikin wings After Mid-Nite......Hillarious Results to follow !

hahaha yes Pizza is awesome!!

VincentV37 (author)VincentV372016-07-21

I Can't Spell......But this has yet to Stop Me ! LOLO

PattyP17 (author)VincentV372016-07-24

Your spelling is fine, just using too many caps :-D

JeffG2 (author)2016-07-17

Nice I'ble, one minor "quibble." According to my Italian friends, a rolling pin is a no-no because it flattens the crust and inhibits the rise. This requires mastering the skill of stretching the dough out over one's fists as the old time pizzaiolos do it. Honestly, I can't do this and a rolling pin is fine. Other than that, my one suggestion is to use minimal toppings as well as substitute tomato paste brushed over the surface instead of sauce; otherwise the pizza gets soggy.

Thanks!

RobertA2 (author)JeffG22016-07-22

I have to seriously doubt that Real Italians use tomato paste on pizza. I grew up in an Italian neighborhood, there was only 1 pizza restaurant in a 1 mile radius [Brooklyn, NY]. They never used tomato paste, my mother and many others never used tomato paste. To each him own.

Thanks! Yes, for the life of me, I can't do the stretching either, by throwing it up in the air, etc. I can only get it so far, in my experience the dough has risen just fine with a rolling pin, although, I would prefer to be a master pizza slinger. haha maybe some day!! My same friend that taught me this dough, showed me a recipe for home made pizza sauce which is excellent, I just didn't have the time to incorporate it into this instructable. I agree minimal sauce! :)

I too use minimal sauce on my pizzas. Too much tomato sauce on the dough makes for a soggy pie. I pour a little bit in the center of the dough and spread it out using the back of a spoon.

Regarding toppings: I love veggies, so I load up my pies with a lot of diced vegetables, over the cheese layer. I also sprinkle in some fresh herbs from the garden. In general, using fresh stuff makes for the best-tasting pizza pie.

Wild-Bill (author)2016-07-21

Nice instructable. I have been making pizza from scratch for years now. I cannot remember when I started using Durum Semolina (pasta flour) on a whim. I try a lot of things on a whim. Semolina adds more elasticity to the dough. I have added a lot of other things to the dough over the years. One I stayed with for a couple of years was 7 grain porridge. I started doing that after having this incredible pizza made with multi-grain dough. It was just too much trouble. My latest off the cuff addition that I have been doing for a few years now is garlic powder. It adds something scrumptious to the crust. For your recipe try about 3 Tablespoons. I cook my pizzas, which are thin crust, directly on field tiles (inexpensive unglazed tiles) in my oven and one day I am going to get around to building that wood fired pizza oven. Bon Appétit

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