How to Make Gluten Free Pizza Dough

Gluten free pizza dough made with only 8 ingredients!

There’s one huge reason why I haven’t committed to a gluten free diet: pizza. It’s silly, I know, but a slice of New York-style cheese pizza is my favorite food. Even after traveling the world and eating some pretty amazing meals, that perfect slice of pie still stands out. It’s my number one go-to meal, and I don’t know how to make gluten free pizza dough that stands up to my expectations.

I keep trying gluten free dough to try to get it right, but up until now, I’ve never been impressed. Part of the delight of pizza is its simplicity, and simple food has to be spectacular. Each individual components must stand on its own while also coming together perfectly. No pressure, right?

Gooey melted cheese; tangy, sweet, and acidic marinara sauce; and crunchy – yet chewy – crust. The dough is the vehicle that delivers all the toppings. It must be textured enough on the outside to give us a much-needed contrast, yet the insides have to be soft and easy to eat.

Simply stated, I haven’t had a perfect enough experience with gluten free pizza dough (until now).

The Challenge With Gluten Free Dough—There’s No Gluten

Too often, gluten free pizza dough is doughy, flavorless, and lacks texture. Boring, disappointing, and certainly not memorable. The gluten in the flour is what gives pizza dough its oomph, it’s elasticity.

Regular dough is kneaded and kneaded and kneaded some more. It rises and is punched down, only to rise again. This develops (and relaxes) a gluten network that creates a beautiful texture as it bakes.

With gluten free doughs, there is no kneading because there is no gluten to develop. This revelation this was the first step to making a better gluten free pizza dough – don’t knead!

If you’ve played around with dough recipes before, you might agree that gluten free doughs are super sticky. It’s impossible to knead that sticky mess anyway, and adding more flour will create a dense, dry finished product. So, embrace the stickiness and skip the kneading.

Yeast and the Power of the Rise

Now that we’ve realized how to make gluten free pizza dough without kneading, let’s talk about the yeast. Yeast is a living organism that gives rise to your dough. The yeast creates carbon dioxide bubbles as it heats up in the oven, creating air and rise inside the dough. This means that the insides stay soft and chewy while the hot oven creates a browned, crusty exterior.

Proofing the yeast for gluten free dough is super critical. Because there’s no gluten network, gluten free dough doesn’t rise as much as regular dough. Activating the yeast by feeding it with honey will get it raging and ready to go. In only five minutes, the mixture is foamy and yeasty-smelling (you know what I mean, how else do you describe that?).

A Brief Note about Toppings

Now that you know how to make gluten free pizza dough, it’s time to consider toppings. Where do you start? Marinara and mozzarella cheese is classic (although I always add a bit of provolone cheese, too, to amp up that cheesy flavor). Garlic oil and fresh mozzarella will add some excitement to your life (especially if you’re making a bacon and kale pizza, my personal favorite!).

My biggest piece of advice: don’t use too much sauce (a 4-ounce ladle should be enough), and don’t pile on the toppings. That includes the cheese! One cup of cheese should be your maximum. Too many toppings will create soggy dough, and no one wants that.

Let’s Get Started: How To Make Gluten Free Pizza Dough

The best part about this recipe (other than how delicious it tastes) – it only takes 8 ingredients to make it. Once you pick up a bag of gluten free flour, you should have all of the ingredients in your pantry at all times. So…what are you waiting for? Let’s make some pizza!

Baking instructions: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Bake pizza for about 15 minutes or until crust is golden brown and cheese is melted. Time will vary depending on if it’s a thin or thick crust.

 

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41 Comments

    1. Kimberly, 400 for about 15 minutes (until crust is golden brown). Time will vary a bit depending on if it’s thin or thick crust.

    1. Karen, 400 for about 15 minutes (until crust is golden brown). Time will vary a bit depending on if it’s thin or thick crust.

    1. Monica, 400 for about 15 minutes (until crust is golden brown). Time will vary a bit depending on if it’s thin or thick crust.

    1. Martina, 400 for about 15 minutes (until crust is golden brown). Time will vary a bit depending on if it’s thin or thick crust.

    1. Joyce, 400 for about 15 minutes (until crust is golden brown). Time will vary a bit depending on if it’s thin or thick crust.

  1. Is there a typo in the flour amount? Should it be 2 1/2 cups not 1 1/2 cup? If you make it with 1 1/2 cup of flour, it is like soup!

    1. Hi Maureen, it would not be a good idea to freeze the dough. The cold temperatures would kill the yeast and the dough would not rise after being frozen. However, you could partially bake the crust (without sauce or toppings), cool, securely wrap, and freeze the par-baked crust to making into pizza later!

  2. I made this pizza last night. Initially used 2 cups of flour but had to add 2 more cups in order for it to somewhat resemble dough. It did rise and it tasted okay, however the pizza did not look at all like the one in your pictures. The texture was more cake like than pizza. I used Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free All Purpose.

    Did you use Bob’s Red Mill 1 to 1?

    My search continues for gluten free pizza dough.

  3. I made this pizza dough tonight. It also did not look like your pictures – it was more of a cookie batter consistency when uncooked. I used Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free All Purpose Flour. It rised and it was tasty, but the texture was a crumb – not bread-like at all. I may make it again, but will now refer to it as Pizza Cake.

    1. Hi April, next time you can add more water if the dough is too dry and crumbly to create a smoother consistency!

  4. Hi I am making gluten free pizza cones but battling with the dough sticking to the moulds even if I spray them with oil. Any advice?

    1. Hi Kelvin. You can try spraying and then lightly coating the mould with gluten free flour. However, this might not be the best pizza dough for a mould.

  5. Thank you for this recipe and even more for all the explanations! This helps! I have started figuring out the things you say by trying to experiment with just replacing a naturally gluten free flour (buckwheat) for wheat in a regular recipe, but it really helps to read your explanations and know that yes indeed, without the gluten, things function differently. The honey tip also seems great. Can’t wait to try it!

  6. I tried to make a gluten-free stromboli using box gluten-free pizza dough, but it was very crumbly and not tasty at all. I was hoping to find a better recipe to work with, and was wondering if this dough is flexible enough for me to be folding it over to create stromboli crust? Do you think it will crumble too easily for this?

    1. Kim, We haven’t tried that particular flour so I can’t say for certain. However, just based on the ingredients in Bob’s GF flour, I would think it would work fine. Hope this helps. 🙂

  7. I made this pizza tonight! Overall the recipe was easy to follow, which I’m all about! Love the honey and yeast tip! Unfortunately the dough was sticky when trying to “stretch” it into the baking sheet (even after adding extra flour)! Then it broke apart while cooking In the oven….it still tasted really good but didn’t come out how the recipe stated!
    Please let me know if you have any tips

    1. Hi Cait this dough is a bit more sticky than your usual pizza dough. It doesn’t really “stretch” more than spread. Hope this helps for next time!

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