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Pizza Dough 101

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So you want to make your own pizza dough? Making pizza dough is all about the ratios. All you need is flour, water, salt, sugar, oil and yeast. The ratio you'll need depends on the crust you want to serve. Just check out this handy chart! As you develop your own signature crust, it’s important to consider these basic dough formulations as your jumping off point.


The gluten-forming proteins in flour are what gives your dough its structure and causes the dough to rise. Therefore, the higher the protein, the firmer the dough. As flour has a crucial part to play in dough formulas, most pizza operators express their formula based on flour percentage, as we did above.


This is the second most important ingredient in pizza dough.  Dough hydration will affect the consistency of the dough and vitally change your final crust texture. Softer dough contains more water than stiff dough. Therefore, more water makes a softer crust.


Yeast functions to leaven (raise) the dough through the production of carbon dioxide gas. Different yeasts will create different types of crust. The three types of yeast used in making pizza are compressed (cake), active dry or instant dry. Yeast levels range from 0.5-3% as compared to the overall weight of the flour in your recipe.


Salt doesn't just enhance the flavor but strengthens the gluten, making a firmer dough. For the most part, a salt level of 1% to 2% in comparison to flour weight is used.


Sugar not only adds flavor, but is helpful in the fermentation of the yeast. It will also give your dough that lovely golden brown color diners are looking for. Additionally, sugar increases the moisture retention of your dough, tenderizing the crust. While not a requirement in all pizza dough recipes, the typical amount used in a recipe is in the range between 2% and 4% of the flour weight.


This is the lubricant that makes your dough easier to work with. Oil limits friction in the bowl and controls the temperature. How much you use depends heavily on the style of crust. A typical range is 3 to 7%. Lean formulas range from 1-4% compared to flour weight. Rich formulas range from 5-14%.

While pizza’s perfection lives in its simplicity, pizza lovers do appreciate some effort. If you’re looking to add pizza to your menu, check out Bella Bello’s catalog of ingredients and speak to one of our specialists to start making some dough.

Our Pizza Dough Recipes

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