This really is the BEST Pizza Dough recipe that we use all the time when making pizzas for our Friday night dinner and movies at home with the kids or casual pizza parties with friends where everybody gets to top their own. It's easy to make homemade pizza dough that is crispy and chewy with great flavor, and it makes the perfect base for all your favorite pizza topping combinations!

Craving pizza but want something a little different? Try our Cast Iron Pan Pizza (Copycat Pizza Hut Pizza Recipe)Chicago Deep Dish Pizza, Easy Stromboli Recipe, or Four Cheese Pizza with Tomato Basil Arugula Salad!

An image of balls of homemade pizza dough on parchment paper.

The BEST Pizza Dough Recipe

I have been making this easy homemade pizza dough recipe for years. It's really simple and uses ingredients we always have on hand. And it rises really quickly (only 30 minutes), so I can get things started and have cheesy, fantastic pizza customized with all of our favorite toppings ready in about an hour.

It hardly takes any longer than picking up pizza from our favorite pizza place. And it's definitely WAY less expensive to do a weekly pizza night tradition when you make them at home.

If you find yourself making pizza at home often, you might also want to try this whole wheat pizza dough or sourdough pizza dough next!

An image of a homemade pepperoni pizza on a cutting board.

How hot should the oven be to make homemade pizza?

Professional pizzerias use really hot ovens, which gives their crusts the signature crispy texture that can be hard to achieve at home. 

Cooking at lower temperatures (or overloading your pizza with too many toppings) can cause the pizza to cook slower, which can result in soggy, limp pizza that might taste okay, but won't be nearly as close to authentic pizzeria-style pizza that we're going for.

I recommend preheating your oven for AT LEAST 30 minutes, even up to an hour, at 500 degrees F (or 475 if that's as high as your oven will go). Many ovens will indicate that it is completely preheated when it actually is not all the way there, which is why I recommend the extra heating time.

If you are using a pizza stone, put it in the oven before turning the heat on so it has plenty of time to get hot as well. 

An image of a sliced pepperoni pizza.

Do I have to have a pizza stone?

A baking stone doesn't make a huge difference so it isn't totally necessary for making really great homemade pizza, but it certainly helps achieve a crispier crust and great results. They aren't too expensive, so if you find yourself making homemade pizza often, it's probably worth the investment.

If you have one, use it, but if not, my cheater approach is to turn a baking sheet over and use that to bake your pizzas on.

How to Make Pizza Dough

Combine warm water, yeast, and sugar in a large bowl. If using active dry yeast, you will need to let it proof for 5 minutes (until it starts to get foamy) before adding the flour, salt, and olive oil. Or if using instant yeast, you can add the flour, salt, and olive oil right away.

Stir together with a wooden spoon or dough hook until everything starts to come together, then knead for 5 minutes using a stand mixer with a dough hook attachment, or by turning the dough only a lightly floured surface and kneading for 6-7 minutes by hand until the dough is smooth and elastic. It should be tacky, but not so sticky that it is difficult to work with. If it is seeming too sticky, add a little extra flour, 1-2 tablespoons at a time.

Transfer the dough to a large clean bowl with 1-2 teaspoons of olive oil. Turn the dough to coat it in the oil, then cover the bowl with plastic wrap and stick it in the fridge for up to 3 days (if you are making the pizza dough in advance) or let it rise for at least 30 minutes or up to 1 ½ hours until doubled in size. I find that pizza dough is pretty forgiving, so I wouldn't sweat a super specific rise time. I usually just make it, then work on cleaning the kitchen and prepping our pizza sauce, grating cheese, and gathering toppings, and by the time I'm done with that I'm ready to start stretching out the dough.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (or 475 if that's as hot as your oven will go) for at least 30 minutes to an hour while the dough is rising.

When the dough has risen, divide it into 2-3 evenly sized balls (or more if you are making personal pizzas). I like to lightly dust the outside of each ball of pizza dough with a little additional flour.

How to Make Homemade Pizzas

Once your dough is ready, pat or roll it out into circle-ish shapes and place on a pizza peel sprinkled with cornmeal or on a large piece of parchment paper set on a large, fairly sturdy cutting board. My personal preference is to stretch out my dough and set it on parchment paper since I don't have a pizza peel, but you can use a rolling pin (affiliate link) to roll the dough ¼" thin if you prefer. 

Top each circle of dough with about ¼ to ½ cup of sauce (classic pizza sauce is always a hit, but you could use BBQ sauce, pesto sauce, a white sauce, skip the sauce entirely if you feel like it). 

An image of pizza dough topped with homemade pizza sauce.

Add cheese and additional toppings to make your pizza however you like it!

Slide your pizza off of the pizza peel or cutting board onto the preheated pizza stone or upside-down baking sheet. I find it's easiest to just slide my rack out of the oven, then slide my piece of parchment paper with the pizza on it over onto the heated pizza stone.

Bake for 5-10 minutes. The cheese on top should be melted and the crust should be turning golden brown around the edges. The amount of time will depend on just how hot your oven is, how many toppings you added to your pizza, and how thick or thin the crust is.

An image of a homemade pizza with melted cheese and pepperoni on top.

How I shape pizza dough

I always shape my pizza dough by hand, rather than using a rolling pin.

A rolling pin totally works and gets uniform thinness, but I actually like a little bit of a thicker crust around the edges and thinner center, which also helps the pizza cook more evenly as well, and that isn't something you can achieve with a rolling pin.

These are the two best way I've found for achieving this is to shape the pizzas by hand. They both take a little practice, but neither is hard once you get the hang of it. And if you find that your dough keeps shrinking back as you are trying to stretch it out, let it rest for 5 minutes so the gluten can relax, then try again.

Method 1: Drape the dough over your fists

Start with a ball of dough and pat it out into a disc. Then make sure  you aren't wearing any rings and lay the dough on top of your balled fists, using them to rotate and gently stretch the dough. Go ahead and try giving it a little toss even!

This is going to cause the dough to thin more in the center while leaving a slightly thicker ring around the edges. 

Method 2: Steering wheel approach

My other technique starts the same way with flatting a ball of pizza dough into a disc. Then I hold it like a steering wheel with my hands at the top. The weight of the dough will cause it to naturally start to stretch on its own. 

Keep turning and rotating the "wheel" of pizza dough, holding it a couple inches in from the top, until it has stretched out into a large thin circle. 

An image of a sliced pepperoni pizza.

What is the best flour for pizza dough?

I highly recommend using bread flour when making this pizza dough recipe.

I know it's a pain buying a special ingredient if you don't regular stock bread flour in your pantry. And you CAN make this pizza dough recipe with all-purpose flour if that is all you have on hand.

BUT, there is a noticeable difference between pizza dough made with bread flour and all-purpose flour. Which is why I swear by it for making homemade pizza dough. 

Bread flour gives a crispier pizza crust that is truer to the classic pizzeria-style crust, which can be difficult to attain at home. 

I recommend either King Arthur Bread Flour or Bob's Red Mill Artisan Bread Flour. This post isn't sponsored, those are just two widely available brands that always have great quality to make the best pizza dough.

Can I use 00 Pizza Flour?

Yes, you can replace the bread flour in this pizza dough recipe with 00 flour, although it might require slightly more so the dough isn't too sticky.

For serious pizza aficionados, you might have heard of "00 pizza flour" or double zero flour which is a special type of finely ground Italian flour used for making pizza or pasta dough. Because of it's lower gluten content than regular flour and fine texture, it is said to make the best pizza dough with a chewy texture and crisp crust on the edges.

You will likely need an extra 100 grams of 00 flour (usually between ½ to 1 cup) if using it in this pizza dough recipe to replace the bread flour.

How long should you knead pizza dough?

If you aren't an experienced bread baker, you may wonder how long to knead pizza dough. If you are using a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment, I recommend about 5 minutes. If you are doing it by hand, I would probably go another minute or two longer at 6-7 minutes.

Kneading the dough helps develop the gluten in the flour, which is baker-speak for getting the texture right in your pizza dough so it has that wonderful chewy-crisp quality that I love in a good pizza crust.

How long should pizza dough rise?

Pizza dough should rise until it has doubled in size. Which can be anywhere from 30 minutes to 1 ½ hours, depending on how warm it is in your house. That said, I almost always give mine about 30-45 minutes because I don't like to wait longer and that's about as much time as it takes me to clean my kitchen and prep everything else.

I find this is a really easy, forgiving dough and a more specific rise time really isn't necessary. If it looks noticeably bigger than when you first put it into the bowl and covered with plastic wrap, you should be good to go ahead and start making your pizzas.

An image of balls of easy pizza dough.

Make-Ahead & Freezing Instructions

Make-Ahead: You can make the dough up to 3 days in advance and just keep in in the fridge covered with plastic wrap until you are ready to make your pizzas. Just combine all the ingredients and knead like normal, then place the dough in a clean bowl with a little oil and transfer to the fridge immediately, skipping the rising time.

When you want to make your pizzas, just pull the dough out of the fridge and let it sit on the counter for two hours to come up to room temperature and rise before proceeding like normal.

I actually think the flavor and texture of the crust of the pizza is even better when the dough is made at least a day in advance!

Freezing: You can actually even freeze pizza dough to always have some one hand. Make the dough like normal and let it rise, then divide it into 2-3 balls. Rub a little extra olive oil around each ball of dough, then place the balls of dough into freezer-safe ziploc bags and freeze completely. You can keep the balls of frozen pizza dough in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Thaw overnight in the fridge for at least 12 hours, then let it sit on the counter at room temperature for at least 1 hour before using.

Best Pizza Toppings

You can top your pizza however you like, but keep in mind that because pizza cooks so quickly at such a high temperature, the ingredients won't have a lot of extra time to cook.

So things like sausage need to be cooked in advance, and it's best to slice veggies on the thin side, or even roast them first.

Also, I always spread my sauce over the dough then sprinkle with half of my shredded cheese first, followed by the toppings and then the rest of the cheese. I find having cheese on the top and bottom helps the pizza cook more evenly, not be as soggy (especially if using toppings like pineapple or sliced tomatoes), and the toppings don't all slide right off.

An image of a pizza topped with homemade tomato sauce and shredded mozzarella cheese.

Here is our long list of our favorite pizza toppings. We change it up all the time and when we have friends over, it's fun to pull out a bunch of different toppings so everyone can make their own!

  • Cheese: freshly grated mozzarella cheese (it melts so much better than the pre-shredded kind), ricotta or burrata cheese (if you want to get all fancy), freshly grated parmesan or pecorino romano
  • Meats: pepperoni (forever and always), cooked sausage, Canadian bacon, crumbled cooked bacon, sliced Italian meatballs, leftover grilled chicken
  • Veggies: sliced green, red, or yellow peppers, chopped red onions, sliced olives, sliced mushrooms (we prefer fresh), thinly sliced Roma tomatoes, roasted red peppers (so good!), minced garlic, artichoke hearts, roasted broccoli, thinly sliced zucchini (a personal favorite that I came to love on pizza while traveling through Italy), caramelized onions
  • Fruit: Sorry, Italians, but we love pineapple tidbits (if using, be sure to drain these really, really well or they will make your pizza soggy) or even pear (especially good with a balsamic drizzle and arugula)
  • Herbs & spices: fresh basil leaves or other herbs (add these right as the pizza is coming out of the oven) or dried Italian seasoning, parsley, or red pepper flakes.
  • Olive oil

I would love to hear your other favorite toppings in the comments below and will update this list periodically as I think of more toppings!

Also, anybody else love dipping your pizza in ranch dressing or butter garlic sauce? So good!

An image of a sliced homemade pepperoni pizza.

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The BEST Pizza Dough Recipe

4.84 from 103 votes
Amy Nash
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Additional Time 30 mins
Total Time 1 hr
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Servings 18 -20 slices
This really is the BEST Pizza Dough recipe that we use all the time when making pizzas for our Friday night dinner and movies at home with the kids or casual pizza parties with friends where everybody gets to top their own. It's easy to make homemade pizza dough that is crispy and chewy with great flavor, and it makes the perfect base for all your favorite pizza topping combinations! Be sure to watch the video below the recipe instructions to see how I make it!

Ingredients
  

  • 1 ½ cups warm water (110 degrees F)
  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
  • 2 ¼ teaspoons active dry yeast or instant yeast (1 package)
  • 3 ½ to 4 cups bread flour, (455g to 520g)
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons salt

Instructions
 

  • Place a pizza stone in the oven if you have one. Preheat oven to 500 degrees F (or 475 if that's as high as your oven will go) while preparing the pizza dough so it can be completely hot when you are ready to bake the pizzas.
  • Combine warm water, sugar, and yeast in a large bowl. If using active dry yeast, let it proof for 5 minutes until foamy. If using instant yeast, there is no need to wait for the yeast to proof.
  • Add flour, olive oil, and salt and stir well with a wooden spoon or mix in a stand mixer with a dough hook until combined.
  • Knead for 5 minutes using a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment or 6-7 minutes by hand until smooth and elastic. The dough will be tacky and slightly sticky, but should still be manageable to work with.
  • Drizzle a clean bowl with a little olive oil, then place the ball of dough in the bowl and turn it to coat in the oil. Cover with plastic wrap or a clean cloth and let rise for at least 30 minutes (or up to 1 ½ hours) until doubled in size.
  • Divide the dough into 2 or 3 balls (or more if you want to make personal-size pizzas).
  • Roll, pat, or stretch the dough out until it is roughly ¼" thick, then top with ¼-½ cup of pizza sauce, freshly grated mozzarella cheese, and other toppings.
  • Bake for 5-10 minutes until the cheese is melted and the crust is golden brown and crispy around the edges.
  • Cool slightly before cutting and serving.

Video

Notes

  • After rising, the dough can be divided into smaller balls, then frozen for up to 3 months. Rub each ball with a little olive oil first, then place in a freezer-safe ziploc bag before freezing. To thaw, set the dough in the fridge overnight for at least 12 hours, then let it sit at room temperature for 1 hour before using.
  • This pizza dough recipe can be made up to 3 days in advance. Just transfer it to the fridge before letting it rise. Remove from the fridge and let it rise for 1-2 hours before using.
  • See post for pizza topping ideas.

Nutrition

Calories: 108kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 261mg | Potassium: 39mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 1IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 5mg | Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe? Show me on Instagram!Mention @HouseOfNashEats or tag #houseofnasheats!

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About the author

Hi, I'm Amy

I enjoy exploring the world through food, culture, and travel and sharing the adventure with mostly from-scratch, family friendly recipes that I think of as modern comfort cooking.

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Reader questions and reviews

  1. I find this recipe easy to make. I think cooking at a higher temp stops the crust from getting soggy. Second time using this recipe. :0)

  2. My family absolutely loooves when I cook this pizza. Thanks for sharing the recipe!! There’s an issue that I have had repeatedly—the dough is incredibly sticky!! It’s so sticky that I cannot roll it out. I have to quickly put it on my stone, spread it out there, and pop it into the oven. I haven’t seen that anyone else is having this issue. Obviously, it’s something I am doing incorrectly. Do you have any tips or ideas about what I might be doing wrong? 

      1. I just made this yesterday and I had the same problem. Our house tends to be a little more humid so I'm guessing that is the cause.

  3. I just made this recipe on Friday night. Everyone was very impressed! We had leftovers for lunch yesterday and they crisped right up, something my man is extremely picky about with pizza. We have adult children coming over for dinner tonight and he’s requested we make this again! Three days in a row. I’d say this recipe is a keeper!! Thanks so much for publishing this! 💗

  4. Tried this for the first time for my family specialty pizzas. First was a garlic white sauce pizza topped with smoked sausage and smoked mozzarella. Tried this a number of years ago and the whole family loved it. Second was a white garlic/pesto sauce with smoked sausage.

    Go big or go home, right?

    Home runs, both!

  5. Hubby can eat pizza every day of the week. Homemade is best. Love that you can freeze the dough. Perfect for when the pizza craving hits. YES....I do have a pizza stone. Works amazing.

  6. This is the easiest pizza dough recipe out there. You won't reach for canned or boxed pizza dough ever again once you make it.

  7. How awesome is it that pizza can be ready so quickly it takes the same time it would take to go and buy it from a pizzeria? I love treating myself to a pizzeria-pizza (also because I have no wood-fired oven at home!) but homemade is always best! Will give your dough recipe a try next time!

  8. I always make pizza dough at home. Pizza tastes so much better with fresh homemade pizza dough. Love the step by step instructions. very helpful.

  9. Easy, delicious pizza dough. I loved it; it will be my go-to from now on.  All the family members have requested to make pizza again soon! Thanks so much!!

  10. I love making pizza at home and always look for new recipes! Yours looks amazing and I'm going to try it next weekend!

  11. I have made this several times and we love it. Question though, i use my dough hook, but after five minutes my dough is kinda lumpy - not smooth like the picture. Do i need to let it go longer or less time?

  12. I used your recipe for a fun make-your-own-pizza night for my husband and I. It was easy to make and tasted great! Thanks for your detailed instructions.

  13. My kids are huge pizza lovers. I tried this dough and they loved it! I guess no more frozen pizzas here then, lol

  14. I LOVE this recipe, I make it every Friday night, there is enough for two largish pizzas. I have gotten so many compliments on it. Thanks so much for sharing! 

  15. ok, so I literally never leave reviews for recipes... but, this really is the best pizza crust.. it has literally ruined me for all other pizza! I never thought I would want to make my own pizza dough (like ever), now I make this every Friday and my family is always excited!

    1. Thank you, Sophia! Your comment absolutely made my day! I'm so glad this recipe has started a new tradition for your family!

  16. This recipe was so easy to make. I used 4 cups flour with 2 tsp salt and it was perfect for us. I will be making this often . Thanks.

  17. This recipe is amazing!  The best I have tried.  I am really curious if this would work with with double zero flour....

  18. Thanks for making such a detailed guide to pizza crust! Recently, I've been experimenting with gluten free options and I found that Tapioca flour + Chickpea flour make a great alternative!

  19. How long can I let dough sit covered after making before using it.   Made the dough and let sit to rise but made a bit to early, will it be ok setting out longer than the 1-1 and 1/2 for rising?

    1. You can make this dough a full day in advance and just place it in the fridge for a slower rise. If you make it at noon and want to eat at, say, 6, I would stick it in the fridge for a couple of hours, then pull it out so it has 2 hours to come up to room temperature and finish its rise.

  20. I have never made pizza crust because I was intimidated; until I found this recipe! It’s SO easy and SO delicious! My family loves it and I’ve started adding herbs to the dough and it just keeps getting better! Thank you for helping this apprehensive bread baker to step into the unknown! 

  21. I use this as my go to recipe for Pizza it is fantastic. Tonight we made 1 pizza and then with the dough for a second we made a divine foccacia bread with garlic cheese and rosemary dipped in Mince. What a versatile recipe!

  22. Just had to let you know that I've been on the "hunt" for the perfect homemade pizza dough that my husband would like (from Jersey 😉 haha) and was told last night that it (made with your recipe) was, and I quote, "THE best pizza you've ever made me!" 😉 So thank you, thank you!! Think the key was honestly some of your tips to drive home things I knew at heart but would let other recipes worry me about (like long, long prep times with starters and LONG rise times...) as well as truly trusting you to honestly cook it as hot as my oven would go- went for it at 550 F and was perfectly cooked in exactly 8 min. was honestly a little worried I'd gone like 30 seconds too long as bottom was a bit burned but think it was the little bit of Semolina flour I'd used on pan to press it out hoping it would slide onto the second pan I put in the oven about 20 min ahead of time- not so much LOL, so just ended up swapping pans and once cooked of course it slides easily to the cutting board! (but he said it was great as it was) Btw- that hot of an oven made using whole milk shredded mozzarella as bottom cheese "layer" cook up wonderful (not overly "wet" as it can be otherwise!)... now I'll feel good about going back to shredding my own 'block' of mozzarella to avoid the coating they put on the preshredded stuff (though some ARE better!)
    SO, Super yummy (good amt of salt btw too- used 1/2 tsp coarse sea salt and the rest flaked kosher salt which does cut the sodium total!) and also was inspired to make up a batch of pizza sauce using yours as inspiration- used our fav jarred one and mixed with a can of tomato paste and some of my own dried herbs and garlic, etc.! Love the texture the paste adds! Thanks again!! 🙂 Finally feel worthy of getting a pizza stone and peel! Yum, yum gonna be a tasty summer!

    1. Sorry for the slow response (it has been a crazy last week of school for the kids!) but your comment made my day! I'm so glad this recipe and the tips were so helpful! Incidentally, I lived in New Jersey myself for a couple of years so I consider myself very picky about my crusts as well! LOL.

  23. Love this recipe! It’s a key staple in our home! 

    I’m trying to have a gluten free diet and would love to still eat gluten free pizza. Do you know if I substituted the flour from this recipe to oat flour (to be gluten free), the ratio would be the same?

    1. I don't have experience with oat flour, sorry! I have used Bob's Red Mill 1-to-1 baking flour in other recipes though and had good success.

  24. I’ve made this several times. The bread flour really makes a difference in the dough texture. My FIL loves this and goes crazy when I say pizza is for dinner. I divide the risen dough into four balls to make slightly larger personal pizzas. 
    I also shred my own block of mozzarella in the food processor. They put some extra stuff in the preshredded bags to preserve it which just doesn’t taste great. 
    Other than that I follow the recipe exactly and I keep coming back to it. 

  25. Thanks for such a great recipe! I will no longer be looking for a recipe for pizza dough. This is perfect. I made one pizza and froze the second portion. Both came out so well. Dough just perfectly seasoned and the right thickness and nice and crispy. I loaded it with so many toppings had to give it about 11 minutes to bake (at 500F). Thanks again!

  26. I make homemade pizza dough a lot & this recipe is super easy & is one of my faves! For anyone questioning the 2 teaspoons of salt...it is PERFECT! Mine never comes out too salty. It has great flavor! I throw in about 3/4 tsp garlic sometimes too.

    1. Thanks, Sharlee! I'm so glad it's such a hit with your family! Love the idea of adding garlic to the dough too.

  27. You used to have a “Jump to Recipe” link and now you don’t.  It’s really annoying.  This is my go to pizza dough recipe.  I’ve memorized it but sometimes I need to check.  Please put it back. Thank you.  

    1. I'm sorry, Cheryl! I'm working on it! I promise! I actually just took it down a few days ago and am in the middle of converting all of my recipe to a better recipe card plug-in with all the bells and whistles that should make my site even easier to use. I hope to have them all converted over by next week and then it will be back! Thank you for your patience!

    1. Yes, you can substitute double zero flour (or use half bread flour and half 00 flour) without adjusting any other measurements in the recipe.

  28. Ok, so I'm only 12, but I was never intimidated to make any
    kind of bread and I've been making this for about two years now every Wednesday-ish. My mom loves it, ND I get to experience making supper for my family once every week! Totally recommend this recipe!

    1. Thank you for this amazing review, Natalia! I'm so glad to hear it's a favorite at your house too and that you are the one who enjoys making it!

  29. Can the dough be frozen after being in the fridge 24 hrs and then let to sit out to room temp for 2 hrs? Or put back on fridge? Power went out right before we were about to bake.

  30. Hi Amy,
    Your recipe sounds great. Just got an outdoor pizza oven and want to try your recipe. Your pizza sauce looks nice and thick. Do you mind sharing that recipe also?
    Thanks,
    Ted

    1. I have tried it a couple of times and so far haven't loved the results enough to share but I need to keep working with it! If you do and have good results, let me know your approach!

  31. 5 stars
    This truly is the best pizza crust. I used 00 Pizza Flour and had to use 100 grams more flour, but I expected that. Soooo good. Thanks!