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This Whole Wheat Pizza Dough recipe makes a pizza crust that is crispy around the edges and slightly chewy in the middle, just like we like it!

Do you have a Friday night pizza tradition at your house? Be sure to try our No-Cook Homemade Pizza SauceFour Cheese Pizza with Tomato Basil Arugula Salad, or Easy Stromboli Recipe!

An image of a ball of whole wheat pizza dough.

Whole Wheat Pizza Dough

We have been making this pizza dough recipe for years and it’s super easy to throw together in about 10 minutes.

I especially love it topped with pesto sauce and plenty of veggies. I feel like the nutty, yeasty flavor of the whole wheat pizza dough is even better with those toppings than the classic kind, actually, which is why I have a separate post where I share our favorite veggie pizza made with this whole wheat pizza dough as the crust.

While whole wheat pizza dough doesn’t have quite the same taste and texture as classic pizzeria-style pizza dough, it’s pretty darn wonderful in it’s own right and we make it almost as often as the other kind.

An image of a whole wheat veggie pizza.   

Ingredients in Whole Wheat Pizza Dough

Whole Wheat Flour: Obviously, whole wheat flour is used in this pizza dough. If you are worried about going all the way whole wheat, you can absolutely use half whole wheat and half all-purpose or bread flour when you are starting out. 

Active dry yeast: I almost always use active dry yeast because I buy it in bulk and keep it in my fridge. When using active dry yeast, you need to let it proof for 5 minutes in warm water until it gets foamy. If it doesn’t start to foam, it’s probably not good anymore and you should throw it out. You can use instant yeast, if you have some on hand, and skip the step where you let the yeast proof for 5 minutes.

Sugar: It’s just 1 teaspoon but it helps “feed” the active dry yeast so it can proof.

Honey: I love the subtle flavor honey adds to whole wheat bread dough and it does the same thing with this pizza dough recipe. The biggest complaint most people have about whole wheat pizza dough is that it tastes bland, and this little addition helps correct that.

Olive oil: Using olive oil also helps with the flavor of this whole wheat pizza dough. You will use some in the dough itself, and use a little more to coat the bowl that the dough rises in so it doesn’t stick. If you want, you can even brush some around the crust of your pizza before baking for extra flavor!

Salt: This is the last really important ingredient to make sure your pizza dough isn’t bland. Don’t forget it!

An image of whole wheat pizza dough stretched out into a circle.

How to Make Whole Wheat Pizza Dough

1. Start by proofing the yeast in the warm water mixed with a little sugar and the honey. Once the yeast is foamy (about 5 minutes), you’re ready to move on to the next step.

An image showing yeast proofing in a glass bowl.

2. Add the olive oil, salt, and flour, mixing until combined.

3. Knead for 5 minutes, either by hand or using a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment until smooth and elastic.

4. Drizzle a little olive oil in a large bowl and add the pizza dough, turning it once to coat in the oil. Cover with plastic wrap and let it rise for 60-90 minutes until doubled in size.

An image of whole wheat pizza dough rising in a bowl.   

Tips For Making the Best Whole Wheat Pizza Dough

  • Professional pizzerias use really hot ovens, which gives their crusts the signature crispy texture that can be hard to achieve at home. 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).
  • If you are have a pizza stone, put it in the oven before turning the heat on so it has plenty of time to get hot as well. It really helps get the crust crispier on the bottom. Alternatively, you can flip a baking sheet upside down and use that as a makeshift pizza stone.
  • Sprinkle a little cornmeal under your whole wheat pizza dough for extra texture and flavor to your crust.

An image of a ball of homemade whole wheat pizza dough.

MAKE-AHEAD & FREEZING INSTRUCTIONS

Make-Ahead: You can make this whole wheat pizza dough up to 3 days in advance. Just skip the rising process and keep in in the fridge covered with plastic wrap until you are ready to make your pizzas.

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.

Freezing: You can freeze this whole wheat 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.

  An image of a whole wheat veggie pizza. 

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Whole Wheat Pizza Dough
Yield: 16 Servings

Whole Wheat Pizza Dough

Prep Time 15 minutes
Additional Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 cups warm water (around 110 degrees F)
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast or instant yeast
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 3/4 cups whole wheat flour

Instructions

  1. Combine the warm water, granulated sugar, honey, and yeast together in a large bowl. If using active dry yeast, let it proof for 5 minutes until foamy. If using instant yeast, proceed immediately to the next step.
  2. Add the olive oil, salt, and flour, and mix until combined either using a large wooden spoon or a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment.
  3. Knead for 5 minutes using the dough hook attachment on medium-low speed or by hand until the dough is smooth and elastic. If it is too sticky, you can add another 1/4 cup of flour.
  4. Add a little olive oil to a large, clean bowl and transfer the ball of pizza dough to that bowl, turning to coat in the oil. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise for about 60-90 minutes until doubled in size.
  5. While the dough is rising, preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (or as high as your oven will go). If you have a pizza stone, place that on the bottom rack of your oven before heating the oven so it can get really hot at the same time.
  6. When the dough has risen, divide it into two evenly-sized balls.
  7. Working with one ball of dough at a time, dust the dough with a little flour, then flatten it into a round disc. Use your hands to press and stretch the dough into a large, thin circle. If the dough keeps shrinking back, let it rest for 5 minutes before trying again. I like to do this on a sheet of parchment paper to make it easy to transfer my pizza to the oven.
  8. If you plan to load you pizza with lots of toppings, go ahead and bake it plain for 5 minutes first so the middle can cook through, then remove it, top, and return it to the oven to finish baking for about 10 minutes more. If you aren't going crazy on the toppings, you can top it immediately and bake for 15 minutes until the crust is brown around the edges.

Notes

  • You can add 2 tablespoons of Italian seasoning (or a mix of dried basil, oregano, rosemary, thyme, and marjoram) to the dough for additional flavor. I usually skip this, but it's fun for a little variety every now and then.
  • 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 whole wheat 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.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

16

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 86Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 134mgCarbohydrates: 17gFiber: 2gSugar: 1gProtein: 3g