Easy No-Knead Pizza Dough

Love homemade pizza dough but hate the work to make it? This no-knead pizza dough recipe is simple and nearly hands-free. Plus you can make it ahead so it's ready when you want.

No-Knead Pizza Dough
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.

A No-Knead Pizza Dough That Works With Your Timeline

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!

And if that weren't enough to sell you on this pizza, you don’t have to do a bit of kneading.

No-Knead Pizza Dough
Emma Christensen

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
Emma Christensen

The Best Flour for No-Knead Pizza Dough

All-purpose, bread flour or Italian 00 flour will all work, but different flours yield different results. It all has to do with the amount of gluten in the flour.

  • All-purpose - just like the name suggests, it's good for nearly anything, including pizza dough. It doesn't have the best stretch, but works for thin Neapolitan or even deep-dish pizzas.
  • Whole wheat flour - can make it healthier, but combine it with all-purpose for the best consistency.
  • Bread flour - not only for bread, but great for a stretchy pizza dough that may have too much spring. It's a little hard to shape since it wants to bounce back.
  • Italian 00 flour (also called Caputo Tip 00 flour) - found in Italian and specialty markets, is designed for pizzas and foccacias. A little pricey, but worth it if you cook your pizza at super high temps.

For this recipe, almond flour or other gluten-free flours won't work, though (since it's all about the yeast doing the rise with the gluten). If you're looking for a gluten-free pizza dough, you are better off using one that's specifically formulated to use gluten-free flour, like our cauliflower pizza crust

Getting the Right Pizza Dough Consistency

To get the right consistency, measure your flour by weight. The dough should be slack or loose (see below). If the rough feels too dry, sprinkle some water on top before leaving to rise. The dough should be wet, but dust a little more flour when working with it, if it's too tacky to shape. With the right amount of water and flour, the dough should rise to be elastic and pliable.

Working With Loose Dough

This recipe makes a dough that’s soft and a bit wet. It's what bakers call a slack dough. Most no-knead recipes work best if they are slack doughs, meaning it has a high hydration--more water, and thus it's looser and heavier to work with. They produces lots of bubbles in the crust, which is great for pizza!

You can't shape it like other doughs. Instead of drooping it over your fist, try gently stretching it or pressing outward as you shape. Flour your work surface well and go with the flow. These slack doughs give you imperfect circles, but we've come to embrace the rustic shapes they make. We think it adds to that beautiful handmade feeling of our pizzas.

Storing Pizza Dough Overnight in the Fridge

This pizza dough will keep overnight (or up to 3 days) in your refrigerator. It's best to place it in a non-reactive (glass or metal) bowl and cover with plastic wrap (since your dough will continue to rise in the fridge).

When you're ready to make the pizza, let it warm up at room temperature for about 30 minutes. Then, shape out the dough (by stretching or using a flour-dusted rolling pin on a lightly dusted surface).

While the dough warms, you can prep the toppings and preheat the oven and your pizza stone or cast-iron skillet (if you're using one).

Freezing This Fast Pizza Dough

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

Homemade Pizza Recipes for No-Knead Dough

From the Editors Of Simply Recipes

Easy No-Knead Pizza Dough

Prep Time 10 mins
Rising 2 hrs
Total Time 2 hrs 10 mins
Servings 6 to 8
Yield 2 1-pound balls

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 in a zip-top freezer bag and frozen for up to 3 months. Allow the dough to thaw in the fridge overnight before using.

If halving the recipe, mix the dough by hand since the volume may be too small for your mixer to properly mix.

Ingredients

  • 4 cups (500g) all-purpose 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 with the paddle attachment, combine the flour, yeast, and salt on low speed. Add the water all at once and mix until the dough comes together and cleans the sides of the bowl, about 30 to 60 seconds. You don't need to knead it, just get all the ingredients mixed 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
    Emma Christensen
  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 48 hours. Take the dough out of the refrigerator about 1 hour before shaping.

    No-Knead Pizza Dough
    Emma Christensen
    No-Knead Pizza Dough
    Emma Christensen
  3. Shape and 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 in a zip-top freezer bag and frozen for up to 3 months. Allow the dough to thaw in the fridge overnight before using.

    No-Knead Pizza Dough
    Emma Christensen
No-Knead Pizza Dough
Emma Christensen
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
235 Calories
1g Fat
48g Carbs
7g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
×
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6 to 8
Amount per serving
Calories 235
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 1g 2%
Saturated Fat 0g 1%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 400mg 17%
Total Carbohydrate 48g 17%
Dietary Fiber 2g 7%
Total Sugars 0g
Protein 7g
Vitamin C 0mg 0%
Calcium 11mg 1%
Iron 3mg 16%
Potassium 74mg 2%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.