Savory Saturday: Olive Oil Pizza Dough
This is my go-to homemade pizza dough when I am cooking. The olive oil softens the crust while giving it a light, floral flavor. There is just enough sugar to get the yeast feasting instantly so they can work tirelessly to produce a light and bubbly dough.
If you are in a pinch, you can make this dough and eat it in one day, but if you have planned ahead and have the time to let the dough rest in the fridge, you’ll be rewarded with a deeper, light sour flavor and a texture that is both airy and crisp. It’s worth the wait.
Homemade olive oil pizza dough recipe
Makes two 8-ounce dough balls
- 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 2 tablespoons / 1 ounce olive oil
- 3/4 cup /6 ounces lukewarm water
- 2 1/4 cups / 10 ounces all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
Note: This recipe can easily be doubled and tripled so you have enough dough for the week.
Start this day the day before or up to three days before you plan to use it.
In the bowl of a stand mixer with paddle attached, combine the yeast, sugar, olive oil and 3/4 cup lukewarm water. Add the flour and salt. Start by mixing dough on low until everything is well combined. Then switch to the dough hook, increase speed of the mixer to medium-low and knead for 5 minutes. Alternatively, you can knead for 7 to 10 minutes by hand, on a lightly floured surface.
This dough should pull away from the sides of the bowl and be smooth and elastic.
Transfer to a container with a lid and refrigerate 24 to 48 hours. Make sure the container allows room for the dough to rise. After this first slow rise, dough balls can be frozen until ready to use. Defrost in the refrigerator for 6 to 8 hours.
Remove the dough from the refrigerator 1 hour and 30 minutes before you plan you eat. Let the dough sit in a warm spot, lightly covered with a cloth or plastic wrap for 1 hour.
Meanwhile, preheat your oven to 450 degrees F. If you are using a pizza stone (which I recommend), preheat the oven with the stone in it.
On a lightly floured surface, start by rolling out the dough to an 8-inch circle. At this point I prefer to form the pizza crust by hand. Start by carefully picking up the round of dough 1/2-inch in from the edge and gently pinch to form a subtle crust while rotating the dough around in a circle. The weight of the dough will stretch the dough to your final size: 12 inches. If the dough resists the stretching, let it rest for 5 minutes before you continue.
If you have a pizza peel, lightly dust the surface with semolina before placing the crust on top. If you don’t have one, an inverted cookie sheet works beautifully.
Brush the entire crust with olive oil. Top with whatever you’d like, making sure not to overload the thin crust with too many things.
Slide the pizza onto the preheated stone — or if you don’t have a stone you can preheat an inverted cookie sheet in the oven and bake the pizza directly on that.
Bake until the crust is bubbly and golden brown and the cheese has melted.
If you like to get a bit of char on your crust, bake the pizza in the top third of the oven and turn on the broiler for the last 5 minutes of baking. Watch the pizza carefully and rotate it to cook evenly.
Return the pizza to the peel top with finely grated Parmesan and then slice and serve.