This easy pizza dough recipe is great for beginners and produces a soft homemade pizza crust. Skip the pizza delivery because you only need 6 basic ingredients to begin!
This recipe is brought to you in partnership with Red Star Yeast.
Every great pizza begins with a great pizza crust. Some like it thin and crispy, while others prefer a thick and soft crust. This homemade pizza crust has it all: soft & chewy with a delicious crisp and AWESOME flavor. It’s my go-to pizza dough recipe and just a glance at the hundreds of reviews in the comments section tells me that it’s a favorite for many others too!
Easy Dough for Bread Beginners
This is a no-fuss dough recipe for beginners. You need just 6 basic ingredients, plus a little cornmeal for preparing the pan. (You can skip that if needed.) Most of the time is hands off as the dough rises. You might wonder… why waste the time when you can just buy frozen pizza dough? Frozen pizza dough is certainly convenient, but from-scratch crust has unbeatable flavor and texture that only comes from fresh dough. And you can use the dough for cheese breadsticks, too!
Reader, Andy, commented: “Super easy, super fast, super good! I don’t like doughy thick pizzas and I find with this recipe that I can make them thin and crunchy, I love how easy it is. I make pizza once or twice a month! Haven’t bought one for quite some time now! ★★★★★“
If you’ve ever made homemade bagels or sandwich bread, you can easily make pizza dough because it’s quicker, easier, and requires fewer steps.
Overview: Homemade Pizza Dough Ingredients
All pizza dough starts with the same basic ingredients: flour, yeast, water, salt, and olive oil. Here’s the breakdown of what I use in my homemade pizza crust recipe. The full printable recipe is below.
- Yeast: I use Platinum Yeast from Red Star. I have the best results when I use this instant yeast. The Platinum yeast is fantastic because its careful formula strengthens your dough and makes making working with yeast simple. You only need 1 standard packet of yeast (2 and 1/4 teaspoons) to get the job done.
- Water: I tested this pizza dough recipe with different amounts of water. 1 and 1/3 cups is the perfect amount. Use warm water to cut down on rise time, about 100-110°F. Anything over 130ºF kills the yeast.
- Flour: Use unbleached all-purpose white flour in this recipe. Bleaching the flour strips away some of the protein, which will affect how much water the flour absorbs. You can substitute bread flour for a chewier pizza crust. If you love whole grain bread, try this whole wheat pizza dough instead.
- Oil: A couple Tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil adds wonderful flavor to the dough. Don’t forget to brush the dough with olive oil before adding the toppings, which prevents the crust from tasting soggy.
- Salt: Salt adds necessary flavor.
- Sugar: 1 Tablespoon of sugar increases the yeast’s activity and tenderizes the dough, especially when paired with a little olive oil.
- Cornmeal: Cornmeal isn’t in the dough, but it’s used to dust the pizza pan. Cornmeal gives the pizza crust a little extra flavor and crisp. Most delivery pizzas you enjoy have cornmeal on the bottom crust!
You could also add 1 teaspoon each garlic powder and Italian seasoning blend to the dough when you add the flour.
Reader, Shane, commented: “Excellent pizza dough. I add about 1 tbs of garlic powder and Italian herbs to give the dough more flavor as well as 40 grams of cornmeal for a little crunch. It freezes well and makes a nice thin crust. ★★★★★“
This is a Lean Bread Dough
Pizza crust, like homemade bagels, artisan bread, and focaccia, requires a lean dough. A lean dough doesn’t use eggs or butter. Without the extra fat to make the dough soft, you’re promised a crusty pizza crust. (However, I recommend using some olive oil for flavor and to keep the interior on the softer side.) Recipes like dinner rolls, homemade breadsticks, and overnight cinnamon rolls require fat to yield a “rich dough,” which creates a softer and more dessert-like bread.
Overview: How to Make Easy Pizza Dough
- Make the dough: Mix the dough ingredients together by hand or use a hand-held or stand mixer. Do this in steps as described in the written recipe below.
- Knead: Knead by hand or with your mixer. I like doing this by hand.
- Rise: Place dough into a greased mixing bowl, cover tightly, and set aside to rise for about 90 minutes or overnight in the refrigerator.
- Punch & shape: Punch down risen dough to release air bubbles. Divide in 2. Roll dough out into a 12-inch circle. Cover and rest as you prep the pizza toppings.
- Top it: Top with favorite pizza toppings.
- Bake: Bake pizza at a very high temperature for only about 15 minutes.
Young bakers can lend a hand AND have fun in the process. Let the kids help you press down the dough and shape into a circle. They can add their cheeses and make pepperoni faces on top of the pie. Who doesn’t love a smiley pizza? 🙂
Favorite Pizza Pans
Let me share my top choices for pizza pans just in case you’re shopping for a new one. I use and love (affiliate links) this one and this one. If you like baking your homemade pizzas on pizza stones, I’ve used this one before and it’s wonderful.
If you don’t have a pizza pan, use a regular sheet pan. Grease it with olive oil and sprinkle with cornmeal as directed below, and then press the dough into whatever shape that will fit. Make sure the dough is about 1/2-inch thick. For a thinner pizza, stretch the dough out more.
FAQ: How Can I Make The Dough Ahead of Time?
Prepare the dough through step 3 below, but allow the dough to rise for 8-12 hours in the refrigerator. (If it needs to be in the refrigerator for longer, use cooler water in the dough which will slow the dough’s rise and allow for more time.) As a bonus, the slow rise gives the pizza dough wonderful flavor! When ready, continue with step 5 in the recipe below (the shaping step). If the dough didn’t quite double in size when rising, let it sit at room temperature for 30-45 minutes before shaping.
FAQ: How Do I Freeze Homemade Pizza Dough?
This recipe yields two 12-inch pizzas. After the pizza dough rises and you divide the dough in half (step 5), you can freeze one of the balls of dough to make pizza at a later time. Or you can simply freeze both balls of dough separately. Lightly coat all sides of the dough ball(s) with nonstick spray or olive oil. Place the dough ball(s) into individual zipped-top bag(s) and seal tightly, squeezing out all the air. Freeze for up to 3 months.
FAQ: How Do I Thaw Frozen Pizza Dough?
Place the frozen pizza dough in the refrigerator for about 8 hours or overnight. When ready to make pizza, remove the dough from the refrigerator and allow to rest for 30 minutes on the counter. Continue with step 5 in the recipe below.
Uses for Homemade Pizza Dough
Here are the many uses for this homemade pizza dough:
- Extra Cheese Pizza & Stuffed Crust Pizza
- Pesto Pizza (pictured above)
- Homemade Ham & Cheese Pockets
- Pepperoni Pizza Rolls
- Spinach Artichoke White Pizza
- Homemade BBQ Chicken Pizza
- Garlic Knots
- Margherita style: For 2 pizzas, when it’s time to top it in step 6 below, top with the following. (Feel free to halve for only 1 pizza.) Make a homemade tomato sauce by blending 1 28-ounce can San Marzano tomatoes, 1 Tablespoon olive oil, pinch of salt, and 2 minced cloves of garlic. Spread on shaped doughs. Top each with 2-3 ounces thinly sliced fresh mozzarella. Bake as directed, and then sprinkle each hot pizza with 2 Tbsp freshly grated parmesan cheese and a handful of roughly chopped fresh basil.
- Apple gorgonzola pizza is a favorite: For 1 pizza, when it’s time to top it in step 6 below, top with 1 and 1/2 cups (6oz or 168g) shredded mozzarella cheese, 8 ounces crumbled gorgonzola cheese, thin slices of apple, then sprinkle with chopped fresh or dried rosemary before baking.
- Or any other pizza topping you love: pepperoni, crumbled sausage, black olives, onions, mushrooms, jalapeños, etc
Here’s my flatbread pizza crust recipe and whole wheat pizza dough recipe.Print
Easy Homemade Pizza Dough
- Prep Time: 2 hours, 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 15 minutes
- Total Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes
- Yield: 2 12-inch pizzas
- Category: Dinner
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: American
Follow these basic instructions for a thick, crisp, and chewy pizza crust at home. The recipe yields enough pizza dough for two 12-inch pizzas and you can freeze half of the dough for later. Close to 2 pounds of dough total.
- 1 and 1/3 cups (320ml) warm water (between 100-110°F, 38-43°C)
- 2 and 1/4 teaspoons (7g) Platinum Yeast from Red Star instant yeast (1 standard packet)*
- 1 Tablespoon (13g) granulated sugar
- 2 Tablespoons (30ml) olive oil, plus more for pan and brushing on dough
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 and 1/2 cups (about 450g) unbleached all-purpose flour (spooned & leveled), plus more for hands and surface
- sprinkle of cornmeal for dusting the pan
- Whisk the warm water, yeast, and granulated sugar together in the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with a dough hook or paddle attachment. Cover and allow to rest for 5 minutes. *If you don’t have a stand mixer, simply use a large mixing bowl and mix the dough with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula in the next step.
- Add the olive oil, salt, and flour. Beat on low speed for 2 minutes. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. With lightly floured hands, knead the dough for 5 minutes (for a visual, watch me do it in the video above). The dough can be a little too heavy for a mixer to knead it, but you can certainly use the mixer on low speed instead. After kneading, the dough should still feel a little soft. Poke it with your finger – if it slowly bounces back, your dough is ready to rise. If not, keep kneading.
- Lightly grease a large bowl with oil or nonstick spray– just use the same bowl you used for the dough. Place the dough in the bowl, turning it to coat all sides in the oil. Cover the bowl with aluminum foil, plastic wrap, or a clean kitchen towel. Allow the dough to rise at room temperature for 60-90 minutes or until double in size. (Tip: For the warm environment on a particularly cold day, heat your oven to 150°F (66°C). Turn the oven off, place the dough inside, and keep the door slightly ajar. This will be a warm environment for your dough to rise. After about 30 minutes, close the oven door to trap the air inside with the rising dough. When it’s doubled in size, remove from the oven.)
- Preheat oven to 475°F (246°C). Allow it to heat for at least 15-20 minutes as you shape the pizza. (If using a pizza stone, place it in the oven to preheat as well.) Lightly grease baking sheet or pizza pan with nonstick spray or olive oil. Sprinkle lightly with cornmeal, which gives the crust extra crunch and flavor.
- Shape the dough: When the dough is ready, punch it down to release any air bubbles. Divide the dough in half. (If not making 2 pizzas, freeze half of the dough for another time. See freezing instructions below.) On a lightly floured work surface using lightly floured hands or rolling pin, gently flatten the dough into a disc. Place on prepared pan and, using lightly floured hands, stretch and flatten the disc into a 12-inch circle, about 1/2-inch thick. If the dough keeps shrinking back as you try to stretch it, stop what you’re doing, cover it lightly for 5-10 minutes, then try again. Once shaped into a 12-inch circle, lift the edge of the dough up to create a lip around the edges. I simply pinch the edges up to create the rim. If using a pizza stone, place the dough directly on baker’s peels dusted with cornmeal.
- Cover dough lightly with plastic wrap or a clean kitchen towel and allow to rest for a few minutes as you prepare your pizza toppings. I suggest pepperoni & green peppers or jalapeño slices, extra cheese pizza, Hawaiian pizza, pesto pizza, spinach artichoke white pizza, or homemade BBQ chicken pizza.
- Top & bake the pizza: Using your fingers, push dents into the surface of the dough to prevent bubbling. To prevent the filling from making your pizza crust soggy, brush the top lightly with olive oil. Top with your favorite toppings and bake for 13-15 minutes or until the crust is golden brown.
- Slice hot pizza and serve immediately. Cover leftover pizza tightly and store in the refrigerator. Reheat as you prefer. Baked pizza slices can be frozen up to 3 months.
- Freezing Instructions: This recipe yields enough dough for two 12-inch pizzas, a little less than 2 pounds total. After the pizza dough rises and you divide the dough in half (step 5), you can freeze one of the balls of dough to make pizza at a later time. Or you can simply freeze both balls of dough separately. Lightly coat all sides of the dough ball(s) with nonstick spray or olive oil. Place the dough ball(s) into individual zipped-top bag(s) and seal tightly, squeezing out all the air. Freeze for up to 3 months. To thaw, place the frozen pizza dough in the refrigerator for about 8 hours or overnight. When ready to make pizza, remove the dough from the refrigerator and allow to rest for 30 minutes on the counter. Preheat the oven and continue with step 5, punching down the dough to release air if needed.
- Overnight/All Day Instructions: Prepare the dough through step 3, but allow the dough to rise for 8-12 hours in the refrigerator. (If it needs to be in the refrigerator for longer, use cooler water in the dough which will slow the dough’s rise and allow for more time.) The slow rise gives the pizza dough wonderful flavor! When ready, continue with step 4. If the dough didn’t quite double in size overnight, let it sit at room temperature for 30-45 minutes before punching down (step 5).
- Special Tools (affiliate links): Stand Mixer | Dough Scraper | Pizza Pan | Pastry Brush | Pizza Cutter
- Yeast: Red Star Platinum yeast is an instant yeast. You can use active dry yeast instead. The rise time will be at least 90 minutes. Reference my Baking with Yeast Guide for answers to common yeast FAQs.
- Pictured Pizza: This recipe yields 2 pizzas. For each, top with 1/2 cup pizza sauce, 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, pepperoni slices, thinly sliced green pepper or jalapeño, and a sprinkle of Italian seasoning blend or dried basil.
Recipe originally published on Sally’s Baking Addiction in 2013
Keywords: pizza, pizza dough, pizza crust
Reader Comments & Reviews
I have failed time and time again with yeast in the past. This weekend my goal was to make the pizza crust, and tonight overnight cinnamon rolls. The crust turned out AmAzInG. Thank you for all the instructions and video, so helpful. Wish I could post a photo, perfect crust!
So amazing!!!!!!! Thanks for the recipe, loved it!!!!!
Followed to the letter and it turned out perfectly……deleting every other pizza recipe in my files….
I made according to recipe and dough isn’t rising much. Can it still be used?
Hi Amy! See the tip in step 3 for details on creating a warm environment for your dough to rise – given enough time and warmth, your dough should rise eventually!
I’ve been using a focaccia dough recipe for my pizza crust for over 15 years, but wanted something better. I finally made it to this recipe, and like everything else I’ve tried from Sally’s website, it was wonderful. Thank you for sharing with and educating us, Sally! My family thanks you too!!
Hello from Val d’Or, Quebec, Canada
I personally use a one cup of corn flour and two cup of regular flour, it give the dough a crusty texture that we only find in restaurant.
Add in sequence about one third of olive oil when you knead the dough, just add flour if needed but not too much.
Let it rise and put the dough in the refrigerator overnight.
Have a look at the bubbly dough coming out of the Frigidaire.
Make 2 or 3 small pizza
Give it a try
Yup, 5 stars. Super easy and everyone liked it. Thanks!
This is my all-time favorite pizza dough recipe. I’ve divided it into 2 large, 3 medium and even 4 small portions to customize each person’s topping. I make this at least once a month and do not even crave ordering pizza from anyplace else.
This dough was awesome. Based on some other comments I used 1/2 bread flour and 1/2 AP flour. It was a very tasty and easy to make dough. This would make fantastic breadsticks.
I had a quick question. I don’t have a scale and I am trying to figure out how much 150 gr of regular oil will be in cups? I would love if you could help me convert it into cups.
Hi Emily, This recipe only calls for 2 Tablespoons (30ml) olive oil.
I was wanting to make a few pizzas and put them in the freezer so I can make them at a later date. Would this be possible with this dough recipe? Any suggestions? Thanks
Hi Stacy! You could par bake the dough for 5-8 minutes, then freeze. Let it thaw before topping and baking. Make sure you roll the dough/flatten thin as it will puff up without toppings on.
This is my go-to recipe….absolutely perfect……just made one tonight, cooked on the grill. I would like to make up to 6 pizzas for friends, not sure of the proper order…..so, I mix the dough, let it rise……can I then form it into 12″ rounds, and place in the fridge in a pizza box, without the toppings, maybe cover with saran wrap…..take out 30 minutes before, put on the toppings, and bake…..??? Just not sure of the order of things…..thank you!!! Love your recipe….it has been the best one I’ve come across.
Hi Kathy, so glad you enjoy this homemade pizza dough! The best way to prep the dough in advance is to use the Overnight/All Day Instructions in the recipe notes. If you’d like to form it into rounds ahead of time, your method could certainly work. Refrigerate and cover tightly. Remove about 30 minutes before cooking and pat down the dough rounds if they have gotten puffy.
After years of making homemade pizzas for my kids (most Fridays), I decided to invest in a pizza stone. I tried the prescribed pizza dough recipe, but it all went a bit wrong due to me not heating the stone up enough. Second time round I decided I needed an easier recipe and thus remembered stumbling across this one in the first instance. Came out absolutely perfect!!! A lot of recipes claim to be easy and have the perfect crust blah blah blah, but this one really did! And was so easy to make the dough. I like the fact you only have to proof the dough once. Thank you!!! Will be using this recipe over and over for many many years to come.
This recipe is absolutely AWESOME! We bought a pizza oven at the beginning of the pandemic and make the best pizza we’ve ever had thanks to this recipe. We get four crusts out of it, which makes a really nice big personal pizza. It freezes really well and cooks up just as fresh and tasty once thawed. Thanks for this and so many other fantastic recipes!
Do I need to bake the pizza on the first rack or in the middle it’s okay?
Hi Lizakim, You can bake this pizza on the middle rack but if you notice that your cheese is melting before the crust is finished baking you can move it to a lower rack. Enjoy!
I really like this recipe and always make it. Used to get really good, until I realized that the cheese melts quickly, but the crust doesn’t. Brought the temperature down by 50, but still the dough looks pale and not golden. Can you help with this? Any suggestions?
Hi Aida, You have a few options! You can roll the dough thinner so that it bakes through better, and also try lowering the rack in your oven so that the cheese doesn’t melt as fast. Or you can pre-bake your crust (about 5-8 minutes on the same oven temperature) before adding your toppings to guarantee a crisp crust. Hope this helps!
Made a pizza today using this exact recipe and it turned out amazing! Thank you so much for the recipe!
I’ve been married for 42 years and been cooking for longer than that. After making this pizza dough and adding toppings of pepperoni, ham, green peppers & pineapple, my husband told me today this is the best pizza you’ve ever made!! So this will be my do to recipe for a wonderful pizza and great compliments ;). Thank you!
Hi Joyce, Thanks for trying this recipe! So glad you and your husband loved it.
New to the whole making your own pizza dough experience, but I have made this a half dozen times over the last few months. I follow the recipe exactly and it comes out perfect every time. My husband and son are in heaven- no more frozen pizzas! I am a huge fan- every single recipe I make from this Sally’s Baking Addiction is a success.
Made these last night for us and our granddaughters. Everything was perfect and we all loved it. First time making homemade crust. We followed the recipe exactly.
OMG!!! I just got thru making this pizza dough. I can bake something!!! I will learning how to bake with your instructions!!! Thank You, Teacher!!!
Can you use less sugar maybe 1 tsp instead
Hi Marsha, The sugar increases the yeast’s activity and tenderizes the dough, we don’t recommend skipping it. You could use honey instead. If you try reducing the sugar, please let us know how it goes!
Please help! This is the second pizza dough recipe I’ve tried…each time, I follow it to the letter and the dough is always so wet and unworkable! I read a while ago that you’re not supposed to add flour while kneading but as the dough is from the recipe measurements, it’s so sticky and even after 20 minutes of kneading with both my hands and dough scrapers, I make almost no progress! What’s happening and what can I do?
Hi Karen, the dough can certainly be sticky, depending on lots of variables like even the temperature and humidity in your kitchen. Feel free to add additional flour, about a tablespoon at a time, to help the dough come together. Generously flouring your hands will also help when handling the dough.
Thanks for the advice Michelle! I am relieved to hear that I can add flour! That will certainly help make life easier!!
Can I use 00 pizza flour? Would I have to adjust anything in the recipe? Thanks!
Hi Lauren, Pizza flour typically has a higher protein level and forms a stronger gluten network. It creates a chewier pizza crust. We published this recipe with all-purpose flour since it’s more commonly used in kitchens, but you can use either with no changes to the recipe. Enjoy!
This was a simple and great recipe thanks for making a great dinner so easy!
This was an AWESOME crust recipe. 1/2 of recipe made a nice 14” round thin crust. I froze the other half. really good. Used my dough hook and the quick yeast. I didn’t realize that even 20 degrees too hot would possibly kill the yeast. I used a thermometer and made sure it was only 110. I actually had the dough double!!!! after proofing in a oven that was heated to 150 degrees, it doubled in about 90 minutes.
I baked at 425, not 475 suggested in the recipe for about 15 minutes. The recipe was meant for a 12” pizza (not 14) so we reduced the heat a little. Used our usual Canadian bacon (whole package), pineapple, olives (really)and the sauce was Boboli. We rolled dough with rolling pin to get it to 14”.
Thanks for all the tips and detailed steps!
Started this dough at 12 in the afternoon. Do I still refrigerate for a rise to be done at 6?
Hi Christine, We are just seeing this but if you every run into this problem again, you can let the dough rise at room temperature for 60-90 minutes until almost doubled in size and then place it in the refrigerator for a few hours.
Could I make this and allow to sit on the counter for 4 to 6 hrs? Its winter here and cooler. Want to make and let the kids go sledding for the day. Will it compromise the dough?
Hi Katie! See recipe notes for Overnight/All Day Instructions. Enjoy!
Great pizza crust recipe! I used it to make twisty garlic breadsticks. Instead of rolling it into two 12-inch discs, I rolled it into a rectangle roughly 12×18 inches, covered half with a thickened garlic Alfredo sauce, and folded the other half on top. I then cut it into 12 strips, twisted each strip, brushed with butter, and baked them for 14 minutes. Turned out wonderful!
Trying this recipe for the first time and needed 5.5 cups instead of 3.5 before the dough had the right consistency. Not sure why. Its pretty dry where I am with temps of about 75f (32c). Letting it raise right now. Hope it turns out well.
Same here. Needed much more flour than what was in the recipe
Is there any way to speed up the thawing process after frozen?
I froze the dough after making it and would like to use it but usually don’t know 8 hours ahead of time that I want to use it.
Hi Tanya! Thawing slowly in the refrigerator really is the best way, otherwise it will thaw unevenly and may still be frozen in the middle when you go to use it.
when I freeze my dough, I make it a flatter disc that fits in a frozen bag. (maybe an inch thick). It takes less time to thaw and is easier to store…