Easy No-Knead Pizza Dough

No-knead pizza dough! So EASY. Make it ahead so it's ready when you want it. Use with any pizza recipe.

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Photography Credit: Emma Christensen

It seems that every time I decide to make pizza at home (usually on a Friday night) my well-laid plans are disrupted by a last-minute impulse to go to the movies or to meet with friends.

That’s why I love this dough recipe.

You can make it and let it rise, then use it — or change your mind and leave it in the fridge for the next day. Or even the day after that. Or even freeze it for a few weeks. It’s a very forgiving dough!

No-Knead Pizza DoughAnd if that weren’t enough to sell you on this pizza, you don’t have to do a bit of kneading.

Furthermore, an overnight rise in the refrigerator helps develop fantastic flavor. The dough is soft and full of delicious air bubbles.

This recipe makes about two pounds of dough, which is enough for four 10-inch personal pizzas or two larger pizzas. Use it to make any pizza recipe you like!

By the way, if you like this no-knead approach, check out Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day by Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francois and My Bread by Jim Lahey. This pizza recipe was based on their no-knead techniques.

No-Knead Pizza Dough

Easy No-Knead Pizza Dough Recipe

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  • Prep time: 5 minutes
  • Rising time: 2 hours
  • Yield: 2 1-pound balls of dough (enough for 4 10-inch pizzas)

This recipe makes two 1-pound balls of pizza dough, which is enough for two large pizzas or four "personal sized" 10-inch pizzas.

Instant or rapid-rise yeast is actually a different strain of yeast from the usual granulated yeast. It is designed to be mixed directly into the flour. If you can’t find it, use the equivalent amount of active dry yeast and proof it in warm water according to the package directions.

Leftover dough can be placed it in a zip-top freezer bag and frozen for up to 3 months. Allow the dough to thaw in the fridge before using.

If halving the recipe (which is fine!), mix the dough by hand since the volume may be too small for your mixer to properly mix.

Ingredients

  • 4 cups (500g) flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons (slightly less than a full packet) instant yeast
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/2 cups (350g) lukewarm water
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil

Method

1 Make the dough: In a stand mixer on low speed with the paddle attachment, mix the flour, yeast, and salt to combine. Add the water all at once and mix until the dough comes together and cleans the sides of the bowl, 30 to 60 seconds -- you don't need to knead it, just get all the ingredients mixed it together. The dough will be soft and slightly sticky, with no more visible streaks of flour on the surface.

To mix by hand, follow the same procedure using a large bowl and a wooden spoon.

No-Knead Pizza Dough

2 Let the dough rise: Drizzle a large, clean mixing bowl with oil. Flour your hands and form the dough into a rough ball. Transfer it to the oiled bowl and twirl it around a few times to coat it with oil.

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and leave to rise for 2 to 3 hours at room temperature, until doubled in bulk.

After rising, you can refrigerate the dough for up to 3 days; take dough out of the refrigerator about 1 hour before shaping.

No-Knead Pizza Dough No-Knead Pizza Dough

3 Use the dough: Once risen, the dough is ready to be shaped into pizzas and baked. Use this dough for any pizza recipe you want to make and follow recipe instructions for shaping and baking times.

Any leftover dough can be placed it in a zip-top freezer bag and frozen for up to 3 months. Allow the dough to thaw in the fridge before using.

No-Knead Pizza Dough

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Sally Vargas

Sally Pasley Vargas is a freelance writer and the author of three cookbooks (Food for Friends, The Tao of Cooking, Ten Speed Press, and The Cranberry Cookbook). She currently writes the column The Confident Cook for The Boston Globe along with seasonal recipes for the Wednesday Food Section.

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No-Knead Pizza Dough

Showing 4 of 24 Comments

  • Linda G

    Can you make it with GF flour/bread mix?

  • Hugh Pastoriza

    This dough came out great! I’ve been trolling for the best pizza dough recipe to make at home for ages and this was super straightforward and quick. I doubled the recipe for a big crowd of kids and adults, and made a few in the oven and a few on the grill. Delicious – and I’m a former New Yorker with high pizza standards!

  • Amy

    Hi! My dough is rising as I type this, and I plan to freeze some of it, but I wonder: when I thaw the frozen dough, does it need to rise again before using or is it ready to go once thawed? Thank you!

  • Gary in Massena

    Hmmmm…… Aside from the omission of sugar this doesn’t seem overly different from Elise’s tried and true Pizza recipe (http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/homemade_pizza/).

    Am I missing something? What new does this recipe/version bring to the table?

  • Mistie

    We are certainly all pizza lovers in our home but I’ve always steered clear of making my own dough. I always thought it would be too messy and awkward but you have made it look quite simple here so I am keen to give it a go. It’s great that the dough can be frozen too. Ideal for moms like me, I can make it up in bulk when the kids are busy :)

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