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Homemade Pizza Crust 101: all the tips, recipes and more you need!

With homemade pizza crust recipes, as well as tips and tricks to making crust well, you will be rocking family pizza night in no time!
Any good pizza is only as good as its crust. And oh boy, do we have crusts. Generally, I stick with a traditional crust, but I often like to pull out a whole-wheat or cauliflower pizza for funsies. And gluten-free pizza crust is my fave! This post is full of tips, tricks, and recipes. You are bound to leave knowing exactly how to make the best homemade pizza crust for your family regardless of dietary needs!

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Cauliflower Pizza Crust Recipe

Let’s start with one of the best crusts for dietary needs…the cauliflower crust. It sounds surprising and odd but gosh you need to give this a try! It is utterly delicious. Whip this up for your next pizza night and see if anyone even notices the difference. You will need your food processor to get that cauliflower fine enough. But gosh, this is easy!

Tip: cooking the crust prior to putting on the toppings ensures a crispy and not soggy crust.

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Cauliflower Pizza Crust

Ingredients

  • 1/2 head of cauliflower
  • 1/2 cup of shredded cheese I recommend mozzarella
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • salt and pepper

Instructions

  1. Put all ingredients into a food processor or blender and blend until finely ground.
  2. Dump ingredients onto parchment paper lined pizza pan.
  3. Press and form into a crust.
  4. Bake in a 425 degree oven for 10 minutes and then put toppings on top.

Recipe Notes

Note, if you find that this crust comes out a bit too watery for you add 4 tablespoons of flour to the dough.

Whole Wheat Crust Recipe

Whole wheat pizza dough has come a long, long way from itsย beginnings. If your family isn’t a fan of 100% whole wheat dough try mixing half all-purpose with half 100% whole-wheat and see if that is less offensive. Gradually increase the amount of whole-wheat until you get to 100%.

We think whole-wheat crusts are best for small pizzas. Something about the consistency of the dough and cooking. So try using this crust for personal pizza night. You might also prefer to put this crust on a pizza stone to ensure a nice crust that doesn’t resemble bread, too closely.

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Whole Wheat Pizza Crust

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons warm water
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 2 cups white whole-wheat flour
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

Instructions

  1. Stir the yeast, water, and honey together in a small bowl and let sit for 3 to 5 minutes until the top gets frothy and bubbly.
  2. Mix the flour and salt together, add the yeast mixture, and the oil.
  3. Mix well with a wooden spoon.
  4. Mix well until the dough forms a ball in the center of the bowl. Cover and let rise for 2 hours or until doubled in size.
  5. Flour your surface well.
  6. Place the dough on the surface and knead for 2-3 minutes.
  7. Shape into 2 balls, cover and let rest for 30 minutes.
  8. Shape into pizzas, top, and bake at 475 degrees for about 12 minutes or your desired doneness.

Recipe Notes

If your yeast mixture doesn't bubble, start over with a fresh batch of yeast.
If needed, work more flour into the dough as you knead if you find it too sticky.

No-yeast Pizza Dough Recipe

This no-yeast fast-rise dough is the fastest and easiest homemade dough. For busy weeknights, give this no-yeast pizza dough a try. This is the recipe to try if you are a bit uneasy of making your own pizza crust with yeast. This dough should be soft, not sticky. If you find it to be sticky, add more flour.
Tip: line your pan with parchment paper for a nice crust finish!

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No-yeast pizza dough

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2/3 cup milk

Instructions

  1. Stir dry ingredients together.
  2. Add milk, eggs, and honey.
  3. Grease a rimmed baking sheet well.
  4. Pour batter into baking sheet and tilt to coat.
  5. Bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes before topping.

Recipe Notes

Be sure to well grease the pan or you may get some sticking.

Gluten-Free:

Gluten-free pizza dough is easier than ever before with the fabulous and easy to find gluten-free pizza blends and gluten-free baking powder. (ours is Bob’s Red Mill) To the point…substitute your favorite gluten-free flour and baking powder in the traditional pizza dough recipe below. ย It’s my favorite pizza dough recipe, bar none.
With homemade pizza crust recipes, as well as tips and tricks to making crust well, you will be rocking family pizza night in no time!

Deep-Dish Pizza crust

I use a cast iron pan for my deep-dish pizza. Not only is it perfect for cooking, but it looks absolutely fantastic! Lightly grease the pan and press your dough in and up the sides. Cover and let proof for the recommended time. Seriously, this is fantastic for camping! Kids love having pizza on the fire.
Tip: Bake this dough on hot coals for about 25 minutes.

Traditional Pizza Dough

This is my favorite, most-used of all the pizza crust recipes. I use it on cookie sheets, in cast-iron pans, even in mini form. We make breadsticks, cinnamon rolls, and more with this. This crust has a nice crunchy, yet soft dough.

With homemade pizza crust recipes, as well as tips and tricks to making crust well, you will be rocking family pizza night in no time!

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Traditional Pizza Dough

Ingredients

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour more flour for kneading
  • 1 package active dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

Instructions

  1. Mix 1 cup of flour with the yeast and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Stir in the water and oil.
  2. Use an electric mixer on low for 30 seconds (or mix by hand with a wooden spoon for 2 minutes)
  3. Beat on high for 4 minutes (or move on to adding more flour)
  4. Use a wooden spoon to stir in as much of the rest of the flour, as you can.
  5. Turn the dough onto a well-floured surface and knead.
  6. Knead for about 6 minutes (if you didn't use a mixer, knead for about 8 minutes), adding flour if needed. You want a nice elastic and stretchy dough that isn't too sticky.
  7. Divide the dough in half and cover. Rest for 10 min.
  8. Press into pizza pans.

Recipe Notes

If making a thin crust do not let the dough rise after pressing into the pizza pan.
If making a pan pizza press the dough into the pizza pan, cover, and let rise until doubled in size.

Looking for delicious sauces you can make at home? These are our favorite quick & easy ones…
–> quick and easy homemade pizza sauce
–> garlic white sauce
–> barbecue pizza sauce

Tips and Tricks for homemade pizza dough:

  • To freeze homemade dough immediately after making it, wrap it in double wrap and place in freezer. Take it out and put it in the fridge the night before you intend to use it.
  • If using cold dough, allow to stand on the counter for 30 minutes before using.
  • If struggling to roll out the dough, let it rest about 15 minutes and try again.
  • Brush the outside edge of the crust with olive oil or milk for a nice golden brown crust.
  • For gluten-free pizza, allowing rest time is vital.
  • For gluten-free pizza, properly grease the pan because gluten-free pizza tends to stick more easily.
  • For gluten-free pizza, roll your crust out a bit thinner to be sure it cooks through.
  • If you don’t want to knead your dough at all and still use a traditional recipe, simply mix the batter, cover, and place in the fridge overnight. You’ll come back to dough that is ready to use.
  • A hotter oven makes for a better pizza. Use the hottest temperature your dough will allow. Better yet, prebake the dough and blast the heat on the toppings.
  • Pizza stones are worth it.
  • A crispier, thinner crust comes from a wetter, stickier dough. Therefore, a thicker, chewier crust comes from a dryer, more floured dough.
  • Pressing your dough into a circle is better than using a pin, if possible. (which is why the pro’s throw and twirl)

What are your favorite pizza crust recipes? ย Any tricks we missed? ย Let us know in the comments!

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4 Comments

  1. March 10, 2017 / 12:23 pm

    I’ve yet to try a cauliflower crust — if I did I’d have to hand in my Italian membership card. They get pretty temperamental about their pizza. They’ve been known to stop by, unannounced, if they heard you were making pizza. They want to make sure you are following the rules and regulations. They are pretty stodgy! Now I would gladly come over to your house and try it out. :-) I’d even bring a bottle of chianti — I have one that’s been aging for 20 years. Should be about ready to drink. I got it on sale for a $1.99 – I’m sure it’s worth much more now that it’s aged.
    Your pizza does look good. We have a steel that we use for our pizza. It gets super hot and we have a pizza peel that we use to put it in the oven. Have a great weekend. – What time are you eating???????

    • Nellie
      Author
      March 10, 2017 / 12:57 pm

      I am eating whenever you are here :). That chainti sounds wonderful and it’s inspiring me to go grab several bottles of cheap wine and put them in the basement for years :)

  2. Charline
    January 26, 2015 / 11:23 pm

    I’ll have to try some of these. I had never heard of pizza until I moved to Chicago (1958) and my mother made the first pizza I’d ever tasted for my birthday party. She got the recipe off a can of Jay’s Potato Chips – that’s right, a pizza crust from crushed potato chips! It was actually pretty good (with ground Italian sausage, pizza sauce, and slices of cheese melted on top) but today I shudder at the thought of the fat and salt it must have contained.

    I’ve eaten a lot of pizzas since then, but the only ones I really remember (except for the ones my husband makes for us now with fresh tomato chunks instead of the sauce that started to give my stomach fits) is my first, grease, salt, and all!

    • January 27, 2015 / 11:22 am

      That’s a fun memory to have! Definitely not good for you, but hey! Sometimes life is about those little moments.

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