Thin Crust Pizza Dough
Think it takes hours to make homemade pizza dough from scratch? Think again. Just a couple of ingredients and a few minutes of hands on time will reward you with perfect thin crust pizza dough every single time. Pizza night will now be tastier than ever.
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Homemade pizza dough was on my culinary bucket list for years. I tried several variations with a billion types of flour and was always left with a chewy, puffy crust. Not a fan of puffy crust…not a fan at all. I like a thin crust pizza that’s crispy, one with some crunch.
Not like a cracker but it needs to have some substance and it definitely needs to be able to hold a boatload of toppings if I’m feeling especially gluttonous. This Thin Crust Pizza Dough is just what you’re looking for it you want a traditional Neopolitan pizza dough for a true Italian style pizza.
What Is Pizza Dough
Pizza night is all the rage in our house but it can got south quickly if our pizza dough doesn’t live up to our standards. This thin crust pizza recipe is our go-to for perfect pizza every time.
A great pizza dough is the foundation of a really great pizza so you want to be sure you choose a recipe that’s going to make your pizza the best it can be.
Pizza dough is considered to be a lean bread dough which means it contains no eggs or butter. Without the extra fat, the dough can bake into a crispy pizza crust.
A rich dough contains eggs and butter, like in this brioche recipe, and is used for making things like cinnamon rolls or dinner rolls.
What Kind of Flour Makes the Best Pizza Dough
Let’s talk flour for a moment, shall we? Flour is finicky. There are so many types of flour that you could get lost in the dust if you don’t know what to use. Literally.
Whole wheat flour is great but it’s a completely different texture and not at all what we want for a thin, crispy pizza crust. BUT we do love this easy Whole Wheat Pizza dough!
All-purpose flour gave me the super puffy crust I highly dislike. Two thumbs down.
And I’m not even going to get into the varieties of gluten-free flour. Not today.
The winner was 00 flour….what is 00 flour, you ask? Caputo 00 flour is a finely ground flour with a lower gluten content than most flours. Less gluten means less elasticity. Caputo 00 flour is commonly found in a lot of Italian pasta recipes, it’s relatively easy to find these days in most well-stocked grocery stores.
I found mine at an Italian specialty store but you can also buy it online here. If you can’t find it, you can use bread flour in this recipe with good results but the crust will not be quite as thin.
Ingredients in Homemade Pizza Dough
Every pizza dough begins with the same basic ingredients: Flour, yeast, sugar, salt, oil and water. It doesn’t get simpler than that.
Using high quality ingredients is key here, as I mentioned before.
- Flour – As I said before, a Caputo 00 Flour is your best bet because of the lower gluten content but bread flour, or even all purpose flour, will work. Your crust will be a little puffier but it’s still chewy, crispy and amazing. Add a couple extra teaspoons of water if using bread flour since it contains more protein than 00 Flour and All Purpose Flour.
- Yeast – I’ve made this recipe with both Instant Yeast and regular yeast. I find that Instant Yeast works exceptionally well and is much less fussy to work with since you can just whisk it right into the dry ingredients without proofing ahead of time.
- Water – As you may have guessed….nothing fancy here BUT be sure you use warm water to cut down on rise time. A temperature of 110˚F is best, anything above 130˚F will kill the yeast.
- Oil – Extra Virgin Olive Oil adds a great flavor to the dough and a brush on top of your dough before adding your sauce/toppings will keep the pizza from getting soggy.
- Sugar – Sugar is used to feed the yeast and increase its activity. It also tenderizes the dough.
- Salt – Flavor….that’s all
You’ll also notice I used cornmeal on the pizza pan. Our local pizza shop bakes all their pizzas in cornmeal to give it a little extra flavor, texture and crunch!
How To Make It
Let’s get started….this simple dough is made in a mixer. Basically, dump all the dry ingredients in and start the kneading process on low. Add the water and olive oil. You can also make this by hand if you don’t own a mixer.
When the dough becomes a “ball” and pulls away from the sides. Transfer to a lightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap.
Allow the dough to rise in a warm, no drafty place until doubled in size.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and divide in half, for 2 14-inch crusts, or in quarters for 4 7-inch crusts. Form the dough into balls and lightly oil the surface if storing for later. Place in a zip top bag and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
How To Freeze It
Once the pizza dough rises, divide it up into either 2 balls or 4 smaller balls. Lightly coat the dough in olive oil and transfer to individual freezer bags. Squeeze out the air and freeze for up to 3 months.
To thaw frozen pizza dough, place in the refrigerator and thaw for 8 hours or overnight.
You can make the dough in advance during your weekly kitchen prep session…if you have one. I know lots of people that have a kitchen prep day and I would love to have the discipline to do this…but I don’t.
However, I will always have this dough readily available, as well as, my No Cook Pizza Sauce because even on the craziest, head-spinning nights you can whip something amazing up in 10 minutes flat. Sprinkle with a bit of Pizza seasoning for true pizzeria flavor.
What To Make With It
Pizza always saves the day. Especially THIS grilled pizza or THESE Reuben inspired pizzas.
We also love this California Cobb Pizza with avocado….it tastes so fresh and healthy! But if you’re looking for something a little more hearty, this easy Stromboli is nothing short of amazing and EASY!
This easy dough recipe is also perfect for making our favorite Garlic Knots!!! They come together in just 10 minutes.
If you’re looking for a low carb option….this easy Cauliflower Pizza Crust is top of our list!
We also love this Neapolitan Pizza….it’s so simple and perfect.
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Get the Recipe: Thin Crust Pizza Dough Recipe
- 3 1/2 cups 00 flour , or bread flour
- 2 1/4 teaspoons Instant yeast, 1 packet
- 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 1/2 cup warm water 110 degrees
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, mix together the flour, yeast, sugar and salt.
- Slowly add the water and olive oil and continue mixing until the dough forms a ball and has pulled away from the sides. If the dough is too sticky, add flour 1 teaspoon at a time.
- Transfer the dough to a large, lightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Allow the dough to rest and double in size, approximately 1 hour.
- Transfer to a lightly floured surface and divide the dough into 2 equal pieces. Form each piece into a ball and allow to rest 10 minutes before rolling out.
- If storing for later, lightly coat each dough ball with olive oil and store in a zip top bag for up to 5 days.
28 Comments on “Thin Crust Pizza Dough”
Homemade pizza dough is STILL on my bucket list, but you’ve inspired me!
Homemade pizza is one of the few meals that I actually like making (I’m more of a dessert person!) This dough looks great. I’ll have to keep a lookout for that flour!
How interesting! It really does look perfect!
I agree thick puffy pizza crust is not for me either. The best way is always homemade dough and it comes together so quick and easy. I have not added sugar to my dough before but will definitively give it a try.
Pizza dough and I are still trying to get on the same page, maybe if I try this recipe it will come out perfect like yours 🙂
I prefer this kind of crust too, although every now and then I go for the puff. But usually not. I’m always up for a new pizza recipe, thanks for this and the info on the flour
Good to know this is a fail proof recipe. I’ve been afraid of making my own dough but will try yours for sure!
Your description of a crispy crust that can hold up to lots of toppings makes me really want to try this!
I’ve been looking for a new go-go pizza dough recipes. I’ll have to give this one a try!
Love this recipe. It looks like perfection to me. My dad taught me how to make homemade dough and I’ve never looked back. It’s just so much better.
My husband could LIVE off of pizza! I totally needed this!
At what temperature do you bake this and for how long? Just in the process of making this dough. 🙂
This is my go to pizza dough recipe. It’s pretty much fool proof. The crust has a nice chew to it and great flavor. Works with any type of pizza.
I am so glad you love it! It definitely took quite a few tries to make it perfect. Thanks so much!
Hi Kellie! I make this pizza dough almost every Friday night and we love it! I always find I need to add about one more cup of flour to get the dough to form a ball. Is that common? I’ve thought about altering the amount of water but I’m afraid to do that. What do you think?
Hi, Christine! Fellow baker here and I did the same as you(as well as forgetting the half cup of water, oops!) To combat that, I added about another cup of bread flour and kept kneading and it’s okay but it might be too bready possibly. It’s not too bad but you need 1 1/2 cups of water to combat the flour ratio. Otherwise(like I learned), your dough will be dry. Hope this helps! I hope this dough isn’t a fail for me, though.
Question. At what temp and how long do you bake this? Also do you prebake it before adding the sauce, etc.?
So, you can bake it at 425 for 10 minutes before adding the toppings. Then, it’s about 8 minutes more to cook with the sauce and cheese.
Worked a treat. I put everything in the breadmaker on dough setting. 1.5 hours later we’re read to go.
I’m so glad you loved it! Thank you for your comment!
This was super easy and so good we could not stop eating our pizza.
I’m so glad you enjoyed it. It’s a weekly menu must have!
Works a treat. Sharing with neighbours during lockdown. I put in my breadmaking on dough setting. Comes out 1.5 hours later as perfect dough. Thank you.
So glad you liked it! Thank you for your comment!
Hi. I’m going to try your recipe tonight. It looks like what I am looking for. Thin and crisp. I hate bready pizza crust.
One thing. I used to always make my own sauce in Italian food like pizza, lasagna, ect. Not a fan of jar sauce.
Until I saw in my grocery store a line of sauces by the famous Italian place in NYC called Rao’s. After trying it I use it all the time. And they make a pizza sauce. It is marvelous.
I don’t know if this goes against a recipe site like yours but, I thought I’d pass it along anyway.
We use Rao’s all the time but I also have a recipe for no cook pizza sauce that can be made in just minutes. Thank you for your comment!
Is there a reason for transferring the dough to a clean bowl to rise. I just oil the dough in the mixing bowl.
I just prefer to use a clean dough because sometimes the dough gets stickier as it rises.