Homemade pizza is a meal that we make almost weekly in our house. Pizza is one of our favorite foods, and there are so many ways to top a pizza that it never gets old. And when you make your own pizza at home, it is both more economical and healthful than take-out. Homemade pizza dough is so easy to make, it’s becoming harder and harder for me to justify ordering take-out.
When making pizza dough, I alternate between this whole wheat version and this pizza dough, which is made with white bread flour. Both are equally delicious, and for variety’s sake, it’s nice to have two recipes to choose from. Both recipes make two balls of dough, which is enough for two medium pizzas. One pizza is enough for our family of three (and even provides some leftovers for lunch the next day), so I always freeze the second dough ball. Then we can have homemade pizza a second time for even less work. I’ve included instructions for freezing pizza dough with the recipe below.
This particular pizza that you see in the photo was actually made from frozen dough. (I’ve found that the frozen dough is even easier to work with than the fresh- it rolls out nicely to make a uniform, thin crust.) This was a “clean out the vegetable drawer” dinner night, so we topped the pizza with thin slices of zucchini, yellow squash, and red onion. Not our usual choices, but tasty nonetheless.
Whole Wheat Pizza Dough
Makes 2 dough balls, enough for 2 medium pizzas
- 1 1/2 cups warm water (110 degrees)
- 1 envelope (2 1/4 teaspoons) instant or rapid-rise yeast
- 2-2 1/4 cups (11 to 12 2/3 ounces) bread flour
- 2 cups (11 ounces) whole wheat flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- Place the warm water in a liquid measuring cup. Sprinkle the yeast over the water and stir gently to combine. Set aside and let stand for about 5 minutes.
- Place 2 cups of the bread flour, the whole wheat flour, and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix briefly on low speed.
- Add the olive oil to the water and yeast mixture, and then, with the mixer on low speed, slowly pour the water mixture into the flour mixture. Once the ingredients are well combined, turn off the mixer and switch to the dough hook attachment. Knead the dough on low speed until it is smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. If the dough seems overly sticky, you can add the remaining 1/4 cup of bread flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, during the kneading process. (At this point, you can freeze half or all of the dough. Freezing directions are below.)
- Form the dough into a ball and transfer it to a lightly oiled bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let it rise in a warm place until nearly doubled in size, about 1-1 1/2 hours.
- To assemble pizzas, roll each half of the dough out into a 14-inch circle. (I use a combination of rolling with a rolling pin and stretching the dough with my hands.) Place dough on a piece of parchment paper that has been sprinkled with cornmeal, and place the parchment paper on a baking sheet. Top pizza as desired.
- To bake pizza, preheat a pizza stone in a 500 degree oven for at least 30 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 425 degrees and slide the pizza and parchment paper onto the stone, using the baking sheet to help with the transfer. Bake until the cheese begins to brown and the crust edges are golden, about 8 to 12 minutes. Remove from the oven and let stand a few minutes before slicing.
To freeze pizza dough: After kneading, divide the dough in half and form each half into a smooth, round ball. Dust each dough ball with flour and place in a zip-top plastic bag; place dough in freezer. Pizza dough can be frozen for up to one month. To use, thaw dough in refrigerator overnight, and then let it warm up on the counter for about 2 hours before using.
Recipe adapted from The America’s Test Kitchen Healthy Family Cookbook.