This easy pizza dough recipe is weeknight-friendly and can be ready to bake in just fifteen minutes. The perfect quick pizza dough for busy evenings.
I love homemade pizza, but let’s be honest: on busy weeknights, you don’t always have an hour-and-then-some to let your dough rise.
Enter this quick pizza dough!
Why is this dough ready so quickly?
This dough isn’t too different from any other bread recipe – we’re just reducing the typical 1-hour rise time to 10 minutes so we can bake it sooner.
We can get away with cutting this corner because pizza dough is more forgiving than a loaf of bread: it can be pressed into shape pretty easily, without extra shaping or kneading.
So really, it isn’t that this dough is special or faster: it’s that we’re cheating and skipping a step to get dinner ready more quickly.
This speedy schedule does mean we sacrifice some of the flavor and elasticity of dough that’s had ample rise time (learn more about these variables in Everyday Artisan Bread!) but as long as you salt your dough and use flavorful toppings, the trade-off is more than worth it when you’re in a hurry.
Let the pizza dough rise longer if you can!
This recipe is designed to be bake-able within just fifteen minutes, but you definitely don’t HAVE to bake your pizza that quickly! If you can, we actually recommend letting your dough rise a bit longer to develop more flavor and a chewier texture.
If you have time, let the dough rise for a full hour, then lightly knead it to work out some of the extra air and shape your pizza as usual!
If you don’t have a full hour to let the dough rise, no worries – just let it sit as long as you can! We suggest 10 minutes at a minimum: this lets the dough relax so it’s easier to shape, and gives the yeast a chance to start working so the dough will rise in the oven.
Our favorite way to bake pizza
You can use this homemade pizza dough recipe with any baking method you like! Our favorite pizza technique is to use a baking steel or pizza stone.
Preheat a pizza stone or baking steel.
Place a baking stone or steel (we love our Baking Steel!) on your lowest oven rack and preheat the oven to 450-500° Fahrenheit. (I typically bake my pizza at 500°F, but not everyone is comfortable cranking their oven up that high. 450° will get the job done, too!) Give your baking steel as much preheating time as you can – an hour is best, but at the very least leave it in the oven the entire time it’s heating up.
Use a cutting board and parchment paper to transfer your pizza to the oven.
Put a piece of parchment paper over a large cutting board or an unrimmed baking sheet, then press your pizza into shape on top of the paper. When you’ve added your toppings, pick up the cutting board and use it to slide the pizza and the parchment paper onto your baking steel. (You can use a pizza peel for this too if you have one!) Check out this video for a visual: How to Use a Pizza Stone.
If you prefer not to use parchment paper, you can generously dust a cutting board or inverted baking sheet with cornmeal so the pizza slides off (this can take some practice!)
When the pizza is cooked, use tongs to pull the pizza off the stone and back onto your cutting board. Let it cool for a few minutes, then slice and serve!
Video: How to make quick pizza dough
Easy homemade pizza dough – ready to bake in 15 minutes.
- 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 cup warm water (about 100 degrees – you should be able to comfortably hold your hand in it at this temp)
- 3 Tablespoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 2 1/2 cups (300g) all purpose flour, plus extra for dusting
- Your favorite pizza toppings!
- Mix yeast, sugar, and warm water in a large bowl (you can also use a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook). Let stand 3-4 minutes until yeast begins to foam.
- Add olive oil and salt to yeast mixture.
- Stir in most of the flour, reserving about 1/2 cup, until dough starts to come together.
- Take a look at your dough. If it is still too wet, add remaining flour a bit at a time and knead between each addition. The dough should pull itself into a ball as you stir but should still be slightly sticky to the touch. If the dough is too dry, add a splash of water or olive oil and stir or knead to work the liquid into the dough.
- Cover dough with a tea towel and let it rest for at least 10 minutes. (If you have more time, let it rest for up to an hour to develop more flavor).
- Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and roll or shape normally.
- Top with your favorite sauce, cheese, and toppings, and bake with your favorite method! We like to bake pizza on a hot baking steel at 450-500°F for 10-20 minutes until the cheese is bubbly and the crust is browned.
How much dough does this recipe make? This recipe makes enough for one sheet-pan sized pizza, two 10-12″ pizzas, or 4-6 individual pizzas (depending on size and how thin you stretch your dough!) If you don’t need that much pizza, you can keep extra dough in the fridge (in a large mixing bowl, covered, with plenty of room to rise!) for up to 24 hours – when you’re ready to use it, punch it down and let it warm up on the counter for an hour or so, then use normally (you get great flavor this way!)
How to bake pizza dough. We prefer baking on a hot baking steel or pizza stone. You can also use this dough for deep dish pizza in a cast iron skillet, grilled flatbread, or a pan pizza. Read the full post above for more on our favorite baking methods!
How long should I let my dough rise? Because pizza can be pressed into shape, the dough is a bit more forgiving than when you make a loaf of bread – which is why we can get away with just a short 10-minute rest (instead of a 1-hour rise) if we need to. But if you have time, let this dough rise for up to an hour to build more flavor and produce a chewier, airier crust!
Adding flavor to this dough. Because we’re baking this dough so quickly, it won’t have the same depth of flavor as dough that’s been through a long rise time (but it’s still a tasty back-pocket recipe for busy weeknights!) Add dried herbs, chopped or roasted garlic, Italian seasoning, fresh ground pepper, or shredded cheese (parmesan, sharp cheddar, asiago) to this pizza dough to give it an extra boost of flavor. You can also brush the pizza with herb- or garlic-infused olive oil (or melted butter) when it comes out of the oven!
Suggested toppings. Use a thin layer of marinara sauce and shredded mozzarella for a classic cheese pizza! We also love adding extra cheeses (parmesan, cheddar, gruyere, fontina, ricotta) meats (pepperoni, sausage, sliced meatballs, grilled chicken) and veggies (bell peppers, onions, mushrooms, black olives, tomatoes, spinach, you name it!) to our homemade pizza. For some topping inspiration, check out our Corn and Cilantro Pizza, Mushroom Flatbread, Breakfast Pizza, or this Italian Sausage and Arugula Pizza.
To easily remove sticky dough from a mixing bowl, run your hand under cold water and then run your wet hand around the edges of the dough as you flip the bowl towards your floured surface. The dough will release easily and in one piece.
Substitutions. Use 1 cup of wheat flour for 1 cup of all purpose flour if you like. You can also use bread flour in place of the all purpose flour for a chewier crumb. Use honey or agave syrup in place of the sugar. If you have a jar of active dry yeast, you can use the 2 teaspoons called for in the recipe. If you just have a packet of active dry yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons) it’s fine to use the entire packet so you don’t have leftovers!
Adapted from AllRecipes.com
Keywords: weeknight, homemade, easy