Skip to Content

Can a Pizza Dough Recipe be Reliable?

Four pizza options

After Mom had finally finished experimenting with pancakes, she went next to find a reliable pizza dough. For a long time, she just bought refrigerated dough from the store, but we had pizza for dinner so much, it was getting expensive!

There are so many pizza dough recipes out there, with so many variations. Every week we would try one and give Mom our feedback. Eventually, we all just kind of got tired of it and didn’t think of it as a treat anymore.

Close up of Pizza Crust

Water Temperature Matters for Dough

After a long break, we found a base recipe to start adapting from for reliable dough. The main suggestion of this particular combination concerned the temperature of the water when mixing it with the yeast.

As we have come to find out, this matters way more than most people seem to realize! All of the recipes that we went through just said, “Luke warm water.” What does that mean? That can mean a lot of different temperatures to a lot of different people. This recipe was very helpful in giving a range of 110 to 115 degrees.

Measuring Water Temperature

Most of the time we just get the water from our faucet and then microwave for 30 seconds. It almost always comes out just right.

Ever since we did a science experiment last year concerning how yeast grows, we add sugar to the yeast to help it foam.

After about 10 minutes of allowing the yeast to bubble up, we pour in the flour one cup at a time. Next, we sprinkle in the salt and oil.

The next ingredients are optional, but we love to include some basil and a healthy amount of garlic powder. It just adds a bit more flavor to whatever pizza toppings you prefer.

Dough Pulling from sides of Mixer

Letting the Dough Rise

A lot of recipes for pizza dough just say, “Allow the dough to double.” This can be hard to judge. But we would say it needs a minimum of an hour. We usually try to give it 2 hours, however.

Over and over again we have noticed that if you have the right temperature of water in the beginning, it will rise beautifully.

Pizza dough after rising.

We have a hunch that pizza tastes better when it is cooked at a very high temperature. So we pretend that we have a wood-fired oven, crank it all the way up to 500 degrees, and hope for the best.

Next, we flour our surface and start cutting the dough into 8 small pieces. You could make this into 2 large pizzas, but just do not enjoy that much rolling. Plus, by now you all probably know that we like individual portions so we can all choose different toppings.

Close up of pizza dough texture

Our goal is a circle. Sometimes we get there. Most of the time we do not.

Rolling out pizza dough

Cooking Pizza Dough Strategies

In our experimenting, we have also found that it really matters what kind of pizza pan you using. The ones with larger holes seem to produce a softer crust, while the ones with a lot of little holes make a nice crispy crust.

We lay four dough pies on a pan and cook for about 4 minutes. When they come out they are so puffy!

While we dress these, we put the other pan in for an initial baking. Skipping this step has always meant a rather chewy bottom of our pieces, and sometimes just a bit under cooked while the top is almost burned.

To speed up the process, we just take a little knife and let the steam out so they are easier to add the toppings. Next, back into the steaming hot oven for another 4-5 minutes.

Finished pizza

All of these techniques have created a very reliable recipe for us that we still look forward to eating, even if we get it a lot!

Close up of finished pizza crust

There are so many different ways of using this dough. Have you tried our Stromboli’s for Picky Eaters?

Reliable Pizza Dough

Reliable Pizza Dough

Yield: 8
Prep Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 35 minutes

This dough can be use for so many recipes!


  • 1 Cup + 1 Tablespoon Water (110 to 115 degrees)
  • 2 1/4 Teaspoons Active Dry Yeast
  • 1 Teaspoon Sugar
  • 3 cups All Purpose Flour
  • 1 Teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • 1 Tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 Teaspoons Garlic Powder
  • 1 Teaspoon Dried Basil


  1. Measure water and heat to 110-115 degrees.
  2. Add yeast, sugar, and water to the mixer and allow to rise for 10 minutes.
  3. Using the dough hook, slowly add in the flour, one cup at a time.
  4. With mixer running, add salt, olive oil, garlic powder and basil.
  5. Dough should come together and "clean" the bowl and as it spins.
  6. Transfer to a large oiled bowl and cover. Let rise for an hour or 2 depending on the temperature of the room.
  7. Heat oven to 500 degrees
  8. Gently scoop dough onto a floured surface, and cut into 8 equal pieces. Roll into flat circles.
  9. Lay onto a pizza pan and cook for 4 minutes.
  10. Take out of oven add toppings of choice.
  11. Return to oven for 4-5 minutes, until top is lightly browned and edges look crispy.


Thank you Simple Joy for your water temperature suggestion.

Did you experiment with this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

Skip to Recipe