In my past life I must have been a pizza chef or, at the very least, the Norman Peterson of pizza patrons. I love pizza. LOVE it. There’s just something magical about the combination of crust, cheese, sauce, and toppings that makes biting into a hot slice of pizza the perfect way to end the week (or to begin it. Or to just roll with it.)
But not all pizzas are created equal (I’m looking at you, nostalgia-inducing cafeteria pizza), and I’d spent almost a year searching the internet for the perfect pizza crust recipe when I stumbled upon FritzFamily’s The World’s Best Bread Machine Pizza Dough Recipe a few months ago. With “world’s best” in the title, I knew I had to try it. I’ve used this pizza dough recipe four times now, and I’ve yet to be disappointed. The crust is light, with a crisp texture on the outside and a soft, chewy texture on the inside. It rises well and always cooks perfectly throughout.
So here it is, my current favorite pizza crust recipe (and what to top it with!):
FritzFamily’s The World’s Best Bread Machine Pizza Dough Recipe
Yields two crusts
- 1 cup warm water
- 1/3 cup Stella Artois beer, flat*
- 1 tsp honey
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1 1/4 tsp salt
- 2 tbsps cornmeal
- 3 1/2 cups AP or bread flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp onion powder
- 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning (I use roughly 1/8 tsp of the following: basil, oregano, thyme, rosemary, black pepper, red pepper)
- 1 1/2 tsp active dry yeast
For pizza stone and bowl:
- Olive oil, for coating
- 1-2 tsps of corn meal
*To flatten beer quickly, add 1/8 tsp of baking soda to beer and let sit for at least 5 minutes.
- Add wet ingredients to the bread machine. Add in dry ingredients, leaving out the baking powder and yeast. Create a small well in the center of the dry ingredients and add baking powder and yeast, making sure they don’t touch the wet ingredients. Select dough cycle and start.
- Coat a nonreactive bowl with olive oil. Add in dough (turning to coat in olive oil) and cover with a clean dish cloth. Let rise for 30 minutes. Split in half.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Sprinkle light covering of corn meal onto pizza stone.
- Remove pizza dough from bowl and roll out onto pizza stone using a rolling pin. Brush on a light covering of olive oil (1/2-1 tsp). Top crust with a light layer of pizza sauce (see below for recipe) and bake for 4-5 minutes at 400 degrees.
- Remove from oven and add toppings.
Some Assembly Required
- Pepperoni (as many as you desire)
- 4-5 slices of bacon, crumbled
- 1/2 green bell pepper, sliced
- Mozzarella Cheese ball (roughly 3-4 ounces)
- Asiago, Parmesan, Provolone, and Gouda cheeses, shredded
- Pizza sauce (Homestyle or Pizzeria)
- 1/2-1 tsp olive oil, for bell peppers
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- Precook pepperonis on stovetop for 30-45 seconds over medium-high heat. Drain.
- Precook bacon in oven for 12-13 minutes on 375 degrees (flip bacon halfway through). Drain.
- Cook bell pepper in olive oil and black pepper on stovetop over medium-high heat until soft (3-5 minutes).
- Top pizza crust with second layer of sauce. Add cheeses, bell pepper, and meats.
- Bake at 400 degrees for 13-18 minutes or until pizza is cooked through.
- Top with red pepper flakes and grated Parmesan cheese.