How do you make the best pizza dough?

You need wheat flour, water, yeast and salt. I also use a bit of olive oil.

The wheat flour would be labeled "typo 00" in Italy, which means it has a lot of gluten and a high protein content. (I don't know the US categories, so someone might want one to suggest an edit here and add this information).

Use a mixer with dough hooks.

If you use fresh yeast:

  • Dissolve 20-25 g of yeast in 300 ml water at room temperature (a fork helps)
  • Put 500 g of wheat flour in a bowl
  • Start mixing and add the water with the yeast in small portions. Mix thoroughly – it takes time!

If you use dry yeast:

  • Put 500 g of wheat flour in a bowl and add the dried yeast. Blend with a fork. Move the mix to the margins of the bowl to create a pit in the middle.
  • Pour 300 ml of water at room temperature into the pit.
  • Start mixing in the center of the bowl, collecting the flour mix from the rim in small portions. Mix thoroughly—it takes time!

Continue (in both cases) like this:

  • The dough is supposed to be elastic; if not add some more flour or water, but only very little at once! It is OK when your mixing machine starts to protest.
  • Let the dough rest for a few minutes.
  • Then add a tea spoon of salt to the bowl and a table spoon of olive oil. Knead the dough with your hands for five minutes so that salt and oil are slowly worked into it. If do it with clean hands, the dough won't stick to them when your finished.
  • Put a towel on the bowl and let the dough prove at room temperature for app. 90 minutes. Alternatively, you can put wrap on the bowl and let it prove in your fridge (make sure to have enough headroom!). It will prove within 4 hours there and stay fresh for more than 48 hours, so you can prepare your dough days before.

If your ready for your pizza production, make four (thick) to six (thin) portions and roll the dough on plenty of wheat flour to the size you like. Roll it immediately before the pizza goes into the oven; if you can cook only one or two at a time, have the other dough balls covered with your towel.

Pizza is all about heat. Heat your oven to the max, put the pizza onto a solid oven tray (pre-heat it if you can) and use one of the bottom slots. Don't overload it with ingredients.


2 Replies to “How do you make the best pizza dough?”

  1. If you're looking to make pizza you should not skip Pizza Quest with Peter Reinhart. Below is a recipe from the site. I've been using this recipe for a long time and it never failed me. I'd advise to skip the sugar entirely if you like really thin pizza and place the stone relatively high in the oven for best results.


    • 5 1/4 cups (24 ounces by weight) unbleached bread flour
    • 2 teaspoons (0.5 oz.) kosher salt
    • 1 1/4 teaspoons (0.14 oz.) instant yeast (or 1 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast dissolved in the water)
    • 2 tablespoons (1 oz.) olive oil (optional)
    • 1 tablespoons (1/2 oz.) sugar or honey (optional)
    • 2 1/4 cups (18 oz.) room temperature water (less if using honey or oil)

    You can mix this by hand with a big spoon or in an electric mixer using the paddle (not the dough hook).

    • Combine all the ingredients in the bowl and mix for one minute, to form a coarse, sticky dough ball.
    • Let the dough rest for five minutes, then mix again for one minute to make a smooth, very tacky ball of dough.
    • Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled work surface, rub a little oil on your hands, and fold the dough into a smooth ball. Let it rest on the work surface for 5 minutes and then stretch and fold the dough into a tight ball. Repeat this again, two more times, at 5 minute intervals. Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and immediately place in the refrigerator. The dough can be used anywhere from 6 hours to three days after it goes in the fridge.
    • When ready to make the pizzas, pull the dough from the refrigerator two hours prior to when you plan to bake. Divide the dough into five 8-ounce pieces (if there is any extra dough divide it evenly among the dough balls). With either oil or flour on your hands, form each piece into a tight dough ball and place on a lightly oiled pan. Mist the dough balls with spray oil and cover loosely with plastic wrap or place the pan inside a large plastic bag. Give the dough at least 90 minutes before making the pizzas. If you don’t plan to use them all, place the extra dough balls inside of an oiled freezer bag and keep in the refrigerator (for up to three days) or in the freezer (for up to three months).
    • If using a pizza stone in your home oven, preheat the oven to the highest setting
    • one hour before you plan to make the pizzas. If using a wood-fired oven, you know what to do for your particular oven. If you do not have a baking stone you can bake the pizzas on a sheet pan.
    • Top with your favorite toppings
  2. Pizzeria Mozza has the best dough anywhere in my opinion. It's chewy, crispy, flavorful and has a varied texture. I've long tried to replicate it at home without much luck. But I tried this recipe a few weeks ago and, while time consuming, it was amazing. Now all I need is a coal-fired oven.

    • 22 ounces warm tap water
    • 1/2 ounce compressed yeast
    • 26 ounces bread flour
    • 1/2 ounce dark rye flour
    • 1/4 ounce wheat germ
    • 1/4 ounce honey
    • 1/2 ounce kosher salt

    Put the water in the bowl of a standing mixer. Add the yeast and let it sit for a few minutes to dissolve. Add the bread flour, rye flour, wheat germ, and honey and mix on low speed with a dough hook for 2 minutes. Add the salt, increase the speed to high, and mix the dough for 6 to 7 minutes, until the dough starts to pull away from the sides of the bowl. While the dough is mixing, lightly grease a large bowl with olive oil. Turn the dough out of the bowl and wrap it tightly with plastic wrap. Tightly wrap the perimeter of the bowl with kitchen twine or with another piece of plastic wrap to further seal the bowl. Set the dough aside at moderate room temperature (68-70 degrees) for 45 minutes. Dust your work surface lightly with flour and turn the dough out onto the floured surface. Turn the edges of the dough toward the center, acting as if the round has four sides. Turn the dough over and place it, folded side down, back in the bowl. Cover the bowl again with plastic wrap and set it aside for 45 minutes. Dust your work surface again lightly with flour and turn the dough out onto the floured surface. Divide the dough into six equal segments, each weighing approximately 7 ounces. Gently tuck the edges of each round of the dough under itself. Shape each segment into a round. Cover the dough rounds with a clean dish towel and let them rest for 5 minutes. Lightly flour your hands and use both hands pulling toward you to gather each round of dough into a taught ball. Dust a baking sheet generously with flour and place the dough rounds on the baking sheet. Cover the baking sheet with a dishcloth and set them again at moderate room temperature (68-70 degrees) for 1 hour. Leave the dough rounds at room temperature as you shape each round. Use the dough immediately.

    Note that Pizzeria Mozza's cookbook will be coming this summer:

    Final note: You really need a kitchen scale to get this right. I tried to covert from ounces to tablespoons & cups but each of the ingredients has a different weight so it was very hard to get right. At some point I will try to convert this so it can be done without a scale.


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