Pizza Night For Everyone + Gluten Free Pizza Dough Recipe
Homemade pizza is one of my favorite things to make, I’ve written about it several times. There are unlimited possibilities for topping the flat expanse of dough and it is always delicious. On Friday nights, we usually make two pizzas, enough to have some leftover for lunch the next day and an opportunity to have two (or sometimes three) different combinations of cheese, vegetables, and sauce or no sauce. A few years ago I learned that canned whole tomatoes make the absolute best sauce. I just crush them right on the dough with a sprinkle of salt and sometimes minced garlic or dried oregano. I love pizzas without sauce, too, topped with goat cheese, sweet vegetables (like beets, red peppers, or squash), and, sometimes, balsamic reduction. I adore caramelizing onions and I make them almost every time we have pizza.
I love sharing our pizza nights with friends whenever possible. When we have people over, I don’t want anyone to feel left out and do my best to cook and bake things that people with dietary restrictions can enjoy, too. There are plenty of pizza doughs, with and without gluten, that you can buy ready to stretch or already shaped for baking. Obviously I prefer to make my own and it is one of the easiest things you can make with flour water and yeast.
Gluten free pizza dough is only slightly more difficult. I am not a gluten free pizza expert but I enjoy this crust. My brother is a gluten free pizza afficianado and both he and my friend Emily, who also does not eat gluten, gave this their seal of approval.
Gluten Free Pizza Dough
Adapted from Cooks Illustrated
I definitely recommend pre-baking the crust before you top it. The original recipe suggests baking it until the crust is dark brown which will give you a really crispy crust but I don’t think it is necessary to bake it quite that long. I prepare my pizza dough on a piece of parchment paper and then slide it onto a pizza stone, this works well for the gluten free crust too.
My flour/starch blend is based on this recipe and I use a mixture of what I have on hand such as brown rice flour, white rice flour, teff flour, sorghum flour, cornmeal or others. For the starches I have most frequently used potato starch, corn starch, or arrowroot.
Makes enough for two 12-inch pizzas. The dough freezes well and can be used the same way once thawed.
12 ounces of gluten free flours (see above)
5 ounces of gluten free starches (see above)
2 1/2 ounces almond flour
1 1/2 tablespoons ground flax seed
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon instant yeast
1/4 cup olive oil
1 – 1 1/2 cups warm water
In the bowl of a stand mixed fitted with the dough hook attachment add the flours, starches, almond flour, flax seed, baking powder, salt, yeast, and olive oil. With the mixer running on low, pour in the water 1/4 cup at a time until the dough begins to come together into a ball. You may need to stop the mixer and scrape down the sides to make sure that the water reaches all of the flour. When the dough can be kneaded in a large soft ball, cover it and let it rise for about 1 1/2 hours. It will not rise much.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Cut the ball of dough in half and shape half of it on a sheet of parchment into a round thin disk. Olive oil on your hands will keep it from sticking. Place the parchment on a baking sheet or directly onto a pizza stone. Bake for 15 minutes or until the crust begins to turn golden brown. While the crust is baking, prepare your toppings. Remove the crust from the oven and top with sauce, cheese, and any other toppings you like. Return the pizza to the oven until the cheese is melted and baked to your liking, about 8 minutes. Serve immediately.
This is the dough recipe I use most often when my pizza is not gluten free.