Easy homemade pizza dough

Published 2:00 pm Tuesday, September 20, 2022

By Sarah Condley

Columnist

Brad and I occasionally enjoy pizza, but since we live out in the country, no one delivers to our house. If we purchase it at a local pizza shop, it’s cold by the time we get it home. And I, for one, don’t like cold pizza. I like my hot food hot and my cold food cold. Since we are tired of getting the pizza out and racing home before it cools off, we’ve started making it at home. We’ve attempted pre-made crusts and were happy with one of those until the company changed their recipe, which tastes like cardboard now.

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We’ve tried pizza crust mixes, and they were also just okay. One day recently, we wanted pizza but didn’t have any crust mixes in the pantry, so I went to the computer and found an “Easy Homemade Pizza Dough” recipe on the joyfoodsunshine.com website. The recipe did sound easy, even though there are numerous steps to the recipe, and the author said it would “yield the best pizza ever” in 30 minutes-start to finish.

Because of those comments, I figured we would try it and see what happened.

It was supper time, and I turned on the oven to preheat; simultaneously, I ensured one of the oven racks was at the lowest position.

After using a kitchen thermometer to ensure the water was at the right temperature, I poured the water into a large bowl, added the sugar and yeast, and stirred to combine. The mixture sat for about 5 minutes and became frothy and bubbly. I added the olive oil and gave it a gentle stir before adding 2 cups of all-purpose flour to the bowl. I stirred, adding a little more flour, until the dough formed a slightly sticky ball. I put the flour on the floured countertop and kneaded until I had a smooth dough. I did knead in about 1/4 cup of additional flour to get the smooth dough.

Brad and I like a thin crust pizza, and this recipe seemed to make a lot of pizza dough, so I put the dough on the largest rimmed cookie sheet pan I have and used my fingertips to spread the dough to the edges. As the recipe called for, I pricked the dough with a fork but didn’t prick it through to the pan.

Into the oven, the crust went for 5 minutes to prebake. When it came out, the crust had puffed in a few places, and I stabbed those bubbles with a fork.

Brad and I prefer an olive oil base versus a tomato base sauce, and after covering the crust with a light coating of olive oil, we added some oregano, garlic, and our favorite toppings. We sprinkled the top with “pizza” cheese, and into the oven it went. Within 15 minutes, the pizza was ready, and we sat down to eat, but not before Brad blessed the food.

I used a pizza cutter to cut square pieces of pizza, and we dug in. Brad and I agreed the crust was very good in flavor and texture; however, it was too thick for our liking. After a bit of talking, we decided we would give this recipe a thumbs up but would make a note that it makes enough for two thin-crust pizzas. Next time we’re in the mood for pizza, I’ll just cut this “Nailed It” recipe in half.

The author was correct. This recipe is easy and makes the best homemade pizza ever.

So the next time you have a craving for pizza, and you don’t want to order out, or you want a fun family activity, you might want to give this crust a try and make your own; I don’t think you will be disappointed.

Ingredients

• 1 cup warm water (105-110 degrees F)

• 1 tablespoon sugar

• 1 tablespoon active dry yeast

• 1 tablespoon olive oil

• 2 to 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

• 1 teaspoon salt

Instructions

• Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  Grease a pizza pan or large jelly roll pan and set aside.

• Put warm water into a large mixing bowl.

• Add sugar and yeast and stir to combine.

• Let mixture sit for 5 minutes, or until it becomes frothy and bubbles form.

• Add olive oil and gently stir to combine.

• Add 2 cups of flour and salt and mix with a spatula until a ball begins to form (dough will still be slightly sticky).  Add more flour as needed to form a dough ball.

• Transfer to a floured surface and knead into a smooth dough, adding up to 1/2 cup extra flour if needed.

• Roll dough into your desired shape and gently transfer to your prepared pan.  (Or bake on a pizza stone).

• To ensure the dough doesn’t form air pockets, use a fork to prick the dough all around (gently so you do not poke holes all the way through the crust).

• Bake on the lower rack of your preheated oven for 5 minutes and remove from your oven.  (This is just to very slightly prebake the dough.)  If you notice air bubbles forming, poke them with a fork to let the air out.

• Add pizza sauce and toppings of choice.

• Bake on the lower rack of your oven for around 15-20 minutes, until the crust looks crispy and lightly browned.