A Simple & Easy Basic Pizza Dough

This is where you remind me to take pictures of the food before I let my family dig in. Pizza is always a hit in our house and it is hard to hold off the family for blog photos, particularly for our Friday family nights.

While I love my Pizza Hut Pizza Dough recipe, I have been relying on my other pizza dough recipe these past few weeks because of the simplicity of this dough and how easily it rolls out and comes together. This is a fantastic recipe that I have adapted for my bread machine and it makes one delicious pizza. The recipe offers instructions for making the dough in a food processor (recommended by Bittman), by hand, or with a stand mixer. At the bottom, I offer how I am able to adapt this for the bread machine. Basically, you can make it with something or nothing at all, which is why this recipe is an all-around winner in my book!

Basic Pizza Dough (courtesy of “How to Cook Everything,” by Mark Bittman)

1 teaspoon instant or rapid-rise yeast
3 cups all-purpose or bread flour, plus more as needed
2 teaspoons coarse kosher or sea slat, plus extra for sprinkling
1 to 1 1/4 cups water
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon olive oil

Combine the yeast, flour, and 2 teaspoons salt in the container of a food processor. Turn the machine on and add 1 cup water and the 2 tablespoons of oil through the feed tube. Process for 30 seconds, adding more water, a little at a time, until the mixture forms a ball and is slightly sticky to the touch. If it is dry, add another tablespoon or two of water and process for another 10 seconds. Turn the dough onto a floured work surface and knead by hand a few seconds to form a smooth, round dough ball. Grease a bowl with the remaining olive oil, and place the dough in it. Cover with plastic wrap or a damp cloth and let it rise in a warm draft-free area until the dough doubles in size, 1 to 2 hours. You can cu this rising time short if you are in a hurry or you can let the dough rise more slowly in the refrigerator for six to eight hours.

To make this dough by hand: Combine half the flour with the salt and yeast and stir to blend. Add 1 cup water and the 2 tablespoons olive oil; stir with a wooden spoon until smooth. Add remaining flour a bit at a time; when the mixture becomes too stiff to stir with a spoon, begin kneading, adding as little flour as possible- just enough to keep the dough from being a sticky mess. Knead until smooth but still quite moist, about ten minutes. Proceed as above.

To make this dough with a standing mixer: The machine must be fairly powerful or it will stall. Combine half the flour with the salt, yeast, 2 tablespoons olive oil, and 1 cup water; blend with the machines paddle. With the machine on slow speed, add flour a little at a time until the mix has become a sticky ball that pulls away from the sides of the bowl (switch to the dough hook if necessary). Knead for a minute by hand, adding as little flour as possible, then proceed as above.

To make this dough with the bread machine: Add ingredients as follows- warm water, olive oil, flour, salt, and then add yeast at the top. Turn machine on and select the dough setting. When the machine beeps, you can roll out the dough onto your pizza stone/pan.

Amy’s Friday Night Pizza Routine

1 ball of pizza dough
1 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup 5 or 4 cheese blend
Toppings of your choice
1 can crushed tomatoes
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. While the oven is preheating, cook the crushed tomatoes, sugar, and salt in a pot over low heat for fifteen minutes. Bake the crust only for eight to ten minutes. Pull the crust out and then top with the crushed tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, 5-cheese blend, and toppings of your choice. Put pizza back in and cook for ten to twelve minutes or until the cheese is bubbly and the crust is nicely browned. To earn the coolest mom in the world award, be sure to serve this with some homemade slushies for a special treat.

Related Links:

Notebook Experiments: Will We Like Wheat Pizza Crust?

Freezer Worthy Pizza Sauce

Getting to Know the Bread Machine

Published May 11, 2009 by:

Amy Allen Clark is the founder of MomAdvice.com. You can read all about her here.

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