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 tried this recipe for the first time last week and my husband and I loved it. I followed the recipe exactly other than adding 2 tsp. King Arthur Pizza Dough Flavor, and I did the room temp. rise. For other pizza dough recipes I’ve tried, I prebaked the crust about 5 min. before topping. I might prebake next time just because we like our crust extra crunchy, but without the prebake, this crust held up just fine. Not sure how several reviewers ended up with their dough so soggy. I weighed all ingredients and used a dough hook on my mixer, and it came together beautifully. One question I have is, will it work to substitute honey for the 1 Tbsp. sugar? Thanks for sharing a great recipe!
This pizza dough recipe is phenomenal. this coming from a baker- it turns out perfect every time. I don’t use any other recipe. Don’t forget the cornmeal. it makes a difference in the overall texture and mouthfeel. Love it! thanks Sally!
I love this recipe, crispy, makes 2, thicker than a thin crust but not to thick!
Dough tastes great, but first couple times I made it the dough was way too sticky and wet. I weigh all my ingredients too. I only added 1 cup of water instead of 1 and 1/3 and it turned out perfect!
This became nothing but a hard to clean mess, no matter how much flour I added. Very wasteful experiment.
Best pizza dough recipe I gave come across. I have been pizza every Friday night for the last 3 years, this is by far the best easiest recipe I have come across! My search is over! I prepared this in the morning & let the yeast rise for about 10minutes I let the dough sit all day, ten minutes before toppings I punched down . Thank you sally
Great recipe, I have made this many times and we all love it. I would like to make pizzas for my daughter’s birthday party, but we will be out for some of the day so I can’t make them fresh. Would this plan work: Make the dough in the morning and allow for the 90 minute prove. Then roll the dough, add the sauce/toppings and leave the pizzas like this on a trays in the fridge for approx 4 hours before baking? I have left them previously like this in the fridge, but only for about 90 mins before baking, so I am not sure if there’s a risk the dough will over-prove in the longer time-frame. Many thanks
Hi Caroline! The pizza dough may puff a bit too much during that time, and with the sauce and toppings already in place, it would be difficult to punch/press it back down. How about rolling out the dough, keeping the rounds tightly covered in the refrigerator, and then doing the sauce and toppings once you are ready to bake them? That way you can punch out any air that might cause it to rise during that time.
This is my go to pizza dough recipe for it. As you say, depending on humidity etc I might add a little extra flour (carefully) but I never need much and it always works perfectly. thanks!
Hi, Sally! I am planning on using this overnight dough recipe for your stromboli recipe. My question is – do I need to let the dough rise at room/warm temp (outside refrigerator) for the time you recommend (60-90) minutes IN ADDITION to the 8-12 hours in the refrigerator overnight? Or do i just prepare the dough as directed, place in oiled bowl (covered obviously), and then pop in the refrigerator immediately for the 8-12 hrs? Thank you in advance!
Hi Kirsten, for the overnight rise, you let the dough rise in the refrigerator instead of at room temperature, not in addition to.
My six year old son and I made this dough together and it turned out great. We make it again soon! Thank you for sharing!
I’ve been trying out different homemade pizza dough recipes and we loved this one! I used active dry yeast and let it rise for a full 90 minutes. I also used bread flour so I added 2 extra tablespoons of water as directed in the notes. I did add additional flour (little bits at a time) while kneeling the dough as it was sticky but it wasn’t a problem at all! I made two pizzas and the first one I cooked 15 minutes exactly and it was super crispy. My husband likes his crust extra crispy. The second one I baked for 12 minutes and it was crisp around the edges and the dough was soft and chewy in the center. So good! Definitely will make this again! Thank you ☺️
Best quick pizza dough EVER. I usually use my sourdough but I didn’t plan ahead this time. I used bread flour. This is a very wet dough as others have said but that is what provided the best stretch and flavor, texture and bubbles. I made a summer salad burrata pizza with huge bubbles. I’d rate this 10 out of 5 if possible. You need to be gentle with wet dough and bake at a high heat.
This looks great! Quick question, do I need to add anything for high altitude?
Hi Megan, we wish we could help, but we have no experience baking at high altitude. We know some readers have found this chart helpful: https://www.kingarthurflour.com/learn/high-altitude-baking.html
I love this recipe! It’s on a regular replay here. I almost always use bread flour and it turns out beautifully. I started with your flat bread recipe first and it was good but I love that this is light, crispy and slightly chewy. As always, thanks Sally!
I’ve never made a pizza base from scratch, this is just how I like it, perfect for thin & crispy.
The only change I made was Basil infused olive oil
My go to recipe every single time ♥️
OMGosh! So delicious and so easy to make. I made a 14 inch pizza out of the dough and saved enough for the freezer to make another pizza next week. My husband loved it! I turned the dough out onto a floured surface to knead it just until it blistered then oiled it with olive oil and let rise in an olive oil greased bowl. It only took 40 minutes to double. I will be using this recipe again.
Unfortunately, this dough was way too wet with just the ingredients listed. I lost count with how many extra tbsps I added to get it to a consistency where I could even get it out of the bowl. I picked this because Sally’s recipes are usually always great and highly reviewed, but I am afraid I might have wasted a lot of time getting this recipe to work.
Hi Drew, There are a lot of variables that go into the consistency of dough, even down to the weather and humidity in the air. There’s nothing wrong with adding a little more flour to bring the dough into a less sticky and knead-able consistency. Thank you for giving this recipe a try!
This recipe ROCKS, my family and I save $$$ on take out pizza and now make our own at home using Sally’s recipe. Hint, I throw everything in my breadmaker and use the “dough” setting, it comes out perfect every dang time. Already a fan of Sally’s and have many cookbooks of hers, thanks again Sally, you have never disappointed me yet.
My first time making pizza a crust at 58 years young. Very easy to make. The only hard part for me was rolling it out (never really good at that pie rolling thing. I stick to cobblers and cakes) The crust turned out crispy and soft where it should be, but not too soft. All in all it turned out really good and my hubby highly approved.
This dough is very wet dispute the how many time I’ve made it. I reduces the water to 1 1/4 cups, and I still add a lot of flour. I end up using close to 500g. It comes out perfect once I make these adjustments.
Just started making this. I always weigh ingredients and this dough is pretty wet. I should have realized because, as written, its a 73% hydration dough. Sally must add quite a bit of flour during kneading to kneed it like she does in the video. Anyway, instead of adding too much more flour I decided to just go with the wet dough and switched to a slap and fold technique I learned while making ciabatta bread. Now I’m doing some folds and rests. Its starting to look like a dough now. I’m sure it will turn out great.
I have made this recipe so many times. It always comes out perfect.
This is my go to pizza dough recipe. I’ve tried and tested many others and none stand up to this recipe. My 11 year old daughter loves making it as well. We dont have a stand mixer so we knead it by hand from start to finish and she finds it really easy to work with. Thank you so much for sharing!
Can I prepare this crust and then top it. Iam afraid if I don’t the dough will become soggy
Hi Robin, we usually don’t, but feel free to pre-bake it for a few minutes if you want an extra crispy crust.
This dough recipe was really good and I plan to make it my go to now. Thank you so much! I pre-cooked it for about 8-10 minutes before putting on the toppings, and put in the oven for a further 8-10 minutes until cheese was bubbling . The end product was enjoyed by all including my 10 year old nephew who polished one off by himself after a day of fasting in Ramadan. He loved it!!
Ramadan Mubarak! Super excited to make this pizza today.
3rd time I’m trying it and it came out beautifully… The dough is super soft and the pizza once done is just magically chewy to bite into. 5 stars all the way.
Thank you Sally for this share!
I really loved your artisan bread recipe, so I thought I’d try this, but the dough was just far too wet and sticky to knead, so I ended up having to put at least twice the amount of flour in as the recipe says to make it workable. It took so long to prepare and was so messy, it was really frustrating. Think I will go back to the Jamie Oliver recipe I was using previously.
I had the same exact experience! 🙁
It is especially unfortunate as most of Sally’s recipes work perfectly for me- and this one i have tried multiple times but the dough was just too wet.
I made this dough for the first time and it turned out perfect!!! Truth be told this isn’t the first recipe of yours I have tried and the results were outstanding. The crust of this pizza dough was both soft and cripsy at the same time.
second time i made this pizza dough and turn out great for me .i just started making this pizza dough,because i needing a change from fast food and start a healthy life style and enjoying.thank you for helping me make this pizza dough and this web page.
second time i made this pizza dough and turn out great for me .i just started making this pizza dough,because i needing a change from fast food and start a healthy life style and enjoying.