Gourmet Made Deliciously Simple

How to Make Homemade Pizza Dough like a Pro

This post is sponsored by Red Star Yeast. All opinions are mine alone.

Learn the pro secrets on how to make homemade pizza dough from scratch and start baking beautiful and flavorful pizzas at home on demand!

Learn the pro secrets on how to make homemade pizza dough from scratch and start baking beautiful and flavorful pizzas at home on demand!

Image credit: Red Star Yeast

Who doesn’t love pizza, right? Especially, if we’re talking about homemade pizza with light and airy crust and just the right toppings to satisfy your cravings. And while pizza is easy to make at home, you can always make it better with tips and tricks from the pros.

I learned a few great tips from Master Pizzaillo, Leo Spizzirri, at North American Pizza and Culinary Academy in Lisle, IL. And I’m thrilled to share them with you today!!

Image credit: Red Star Yeast

But before we jump into the pizza talk, let me first thank our amazing sponsor, Red Star Yeast. You know, I love my trusted Red Star Platinum Yeast. I use them all the time for breads, sweet rolls, croissants, and hand pies! Well, guess what? They just launched a brand new product, Platinum Instant Sourdough Yeast! It’s a perfect yeast for those of us who love a good sourdough bread, but have no idea how to (or don’t want to) maintain a starter! I’ve used this yeast in my homemade french bread recipe a few times now, and we just love it so much!!! The familiar soft and fluffy bread, but with a light tang!

This new Platinum Instant Sourdough is the same trusted Platinum yeast we love, but with added real rye-based sourdough starter to create authentic sourdough flavor. Magic, right? You’ve got to try it for yourself.

PLATINUM INSTANT SOURDOUGH IS REAL SOURDOUGH MADE REAL SIMPLE!

To celebrate this new product launch, Red Star Yeast is having a major sweepstake right now. You don’t want to miss this opportunity!!! Scroll to the bottom to learn more about it.

Image credit: Red Star Yeast

I’m so honored Red Star Yeast invited me to their launch event last week, and I got to attend Pizzaioli Masterclass at NAPCA along with fellow food bloggers. To say “it was a fun event” is simply an understatement.

In short 2 days, I’ve learned SO MUCH about history of yeast, all things pizza dough, French baguettes, croissants, and a little bit of macarons (I took the opportunity to ask a few questions from an award-winning French baker, what can I say!).

And today I want to share with you everything I’ve learned about making a perfect pizza dough from scratch. All you need is simple ingredients and a little know-how to create addicting crispy and light pizza crust, a perfect base for your favorite toppings!

Image credit: Red Star Yeast

How to make homemade pizza dough from scratch:

Image credit: Red Star Yeast

  1. Make a big well in the middle of flour.
  2. Pour all the water into the well.
  3. Sprinkle the yeast over the water. Form a claw with your hand and stir the yeast and water mixture, slowly incorporating flour into the wet mixture and creating a thicker and thicker paste. 
  4. Stir in olive oil.
  5. Once you have most of the dough formed, let it rest for 5 minutes. It will look pretty dry, but it’s totally normal.
  6. Add salt and knead until smooth. Then turn the dough onto the counter and cover with the bowl. Rest for 20 minutes. Divide the dough into 3 equal parts and knead into smooth balls. Place the dough balls on a tray and cover with plastic wrap. Or you may place in a plastic container with a lid, or ziplock bags.
  7. Refrigerate for at least 24 hours, or up to 2 days. (You can also freeze it for up to 2 weeks. Transfer the frozen dough into the fridge the night before.)
  8. Remove the pizza dough from the fridge 1 hour before using and allow it to come to room temperature. 

How to stretch pizza dough

Stretching a pizza dough from scratch

Image credit: Red Star Yeast

Tip 1: It’s important to bring the dough to room temperature before stretching it, or the dough will keep shrinking and you may overwork the dough which will lead to tough crust.

Tip 2: Use as little bench flour as you can for dusting. Excess flour will burn in hot oven, which will create bitter taste.

Tip 3: Handle the dough gently without deflating the air bubbles.

Tip 4: Never ever use a rolling pin to stretch pizza crust!

Ok, now let’s stretch the pizza dough…

  1. Dust the counter with a little bit of flour on and place the dough ball.
  2. Draw an imaginary line about one finger width all the way around the edges. That’s the guideline that we don’t want to cross over for that beautiful round edge, which is called “cornicione”, which means frame. 
  3. Then draw another imaginary line right in the center of the dough ball. With all of your fingertips, press forward until you reach the border, leaving dimples all over. Turn the dough over, and then press again from the center forward on the other half of the dough. This’s an important step. Pressing the dough with fingertips and creating dimples traps all the air bubbles inside the dough, so the crust bakes light and airy.
  4. Now you can stretch the dough by pulling the dough with your hands, stretching, slapping or throwing up in air. Have fun!
  5. If it’s getting too sticky, get a little bit of flour with only two fingers to dust.
  6. You want to see lots of bubbles on your stretched pizza dough, that’s how you get light and airy pizza crust!

Image credit: Red Star Yeast

Join #SourdoughItUp Sweepstakes

Now, as promised, here’s the details on a great opportunity for you to win one of five $500 baking prize packages! Seriously, you don’t wanna miss it! (And you bet, I’ll be entering this as well!)⁣

Here’s what you need to do:⁣

  • Use Platinum Instant Sourdough Yeast from Red Star to “sourdough up” your favorite yeast recipe.⁣
  • Take a photo of your final baked product that includes a packet of Platinum Instant Sourdough Yeast.⁣
  • Share your photo on Instagram using the hashtags #SourdoughItUp and tag @RedStarYeast in the picture between now and Oct. 31, 2019.⁣
  • The photo must be shared on a public Instagram account (otherwise we won’t see it!)⁣

Learn more about Platinum Instant Sourdough Yeast and check out other delicious recipes to try with this new yeast!

Image credit: Red Star Yeast

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How to Make Homemade Pizza Dough

Learn the pro secrets on how to make homemade pizza dough from scratch and start baking beautiful and flavorful pizzas at home on demand!

Yield: 3 dough balls (3 12-inch pizza)

Ingredients:

  • 450gr bread flour, or Napolitana 00 flour
  • 250gr water (cold or room temperature)
  • 1 packet (about 1 ½ teaspoons) Red Star Platinum Instant Sourdough Yeast
  • 10gr extra virgin olive oil
  • 12gr coarse sea salt

Directions:

  1. To make the pizza dough, add the flour in a large bowl and make a big well in the middle of flour.
  2. Pour all the water into the well.
  3. Sprinkle the yeast over the water. Form a claw with your hand and stir the yeast and water mixture, slowly incorporating flour into the wet mixture and creating a thicker and thicker paste.
  4. Stir in olive oil.
  5. Once you have most of the dough formed, let it rest for 5 minutes. It will look pretty dry, but it’s totally normal.
  6. Add salt and knead until smooth. Then turn the dough onto the counter and cover with the bowl. Rest for 20 minutes. Divide the dough into 3 equal parts and knead into smooth balls. Place the dough balls on a tray and cover with plastic wrap. Or you may place in a plastic container with a lid, or ziplock bags.
  7. Refrigerate for at least 24 hours, or up to 2 days. (You can also freeze it for up to 2 weeks. Transfer the frozen dough into the fridge the night before.)
  8. Remove the pizza dough from the fridge 1 hour before using and allow it to come to room temperature.
  9. To stretch the pizza dough, dust the counter with a little bit of flour on and place the dough ball.
  10. Draw an imaginary line about one finger width all the way around the edges. That’s the guideline that we don’t want to cross over for that beautiful round edge, which is called “cornicione”, which means frame.
  11. Then draw another imaginary line right in the center of the dough ball. With all of your fingertips, press forward until you reach the border, leaving dimples all over. Turn the dough over, and then press again from the center forward on the other half of the dough. This’s an important step. Pressing the dough with fingertips traps all the air bubbles inside the dough, so the crust is airy and light after baking.
  12. Now you can stretch the dough by pulling the dough with your hands, stretching, slapping or throwing up in air.
  13. If it’s getting too sticky, get a little bit of flour with only two fingers to dust.
  14. You want to see lots of bubbles on your stretched pizza dough, that’s how you get light and airy pizza crust!

Recipe provided by North American Pizza and Culinary Academy.

All images and text ©Shinee D. for Sweet & Savory by Shinee

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2 comments

  1. wow! wonderful, i really loved it.