Thin Crust Pizza & Amazingly Easy Pizza Sauce

I recently had my bible study over for dinner and wanted to make them homemade pizzas. I wanted to try a different crust and this one was amazing! The crust was crisp and thin the way I like it. The sauce had a great flavor that didn’t overwhelm the other ingredients but complimented them so well. My bible study said it was the best pizza they’d ever had. I made it again for Adam because there were no leftovers and he agreed it was better than his favorite local pizza place. Annie was right, this is one recipe you should make tonight!! It does require some prep ahead as you refrigerate the dough for at least 24 hours, but that makes it the perfect pizza for entertaining, because you can make the dough and sauce ahead of time! This is now my go-to pizza recipe and it will be hard to ever stray from it! We topped the pizza with spinach (under the cheese), artichokes and tomatoes, but top yours with your favorite toppings.

Thin Crust Pizza & Amazingly Easy Pizza Sauce

Source: Annie’s Eats, originally Cook’s Illustrated, Jan. & Feb., 2011
Makes 2 12-inch pizzas


For the crust:
3 cups (16½ oz.) bread flour
2 tsp. sugar
½ tsp. instant yeast
1 1/3 cups ice water
1 tbsp. vegetable oil
1½ tsp. salt

For the sauce:
1 (28 oz.) can whole peeled tomatoes, drained
1 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 tsp. red wine vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. oregano
¼ tsp. ground black pepper

For the Dough:
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the flour, sugar, and yeast. Mix just to combine. On low speed, add the ice water and mix just until the dough is combined and all dry ingredients are incorporated, about 10 seconds. Let dough rest for 10 minutes.

Add in the oil and salt to the dough. Change attachment to dough hook & mix until the dough forms a smooth yet sticky ball that clears sides of the bowl, about 30-60 seconds. Knead in mixer for an additional 30 seconds or so (or you can knead knead briefly by hand). Transfer to a lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 24 hours and up to 3 days.

For the Sauce:
Combine all ingredients in a food processor or blender. Blend until smooth, about 30 seconds. Transfer to a bowl or container and refrigerate until ready to use. Makes enough sauce for 3-4 pizzas. I froze the leftover sauce and pulled it out the next time I made pizza.

Prepping the dough for use:

Once ready to make your pizza, remove the dough from the refrigerator and divide in half. (If you plan to freeze some of the dough, this the point where you wrap in plastic, place in a freezer bag and freeze.) Form each half into a ball and place on a lightly oiled baking sheet. Spray the dough balls lightly with cooking spray. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for 1 hour.

For Pizza Assembly:
Preheat oven to 500 degrees.

Transfer dough ball to a greased pizza baking sheet. Using well floured hands, gently stretch the dough to a 12-inch circle, leaving a thicker edge around the outside for the edge of the crust. Spray crust with cooking spray or brush lightly with olive oil.
Pre-bake crust in oven for 4-5 minutes. Remove pizza dough from oven & spread the pizza sauce evenly over the dough. Add desired toppings & cheese. Bake until the cheese is bubbling and slightly browned, 10-12 minutes. Let cool about briefly before serving.

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  1. Yummy-your pizza looks delish!!:)

  2. SO very excited about both of these recipes…they couldn't have been posted at a better time! We decided that we're definitely setting up a "make-your-own-pizza" station for my son and daughter's b-day party and I've been so stressed out, trying to find the perfect crust/sauce recipes. Their party is next Saturday (the 12th), but my husband and I decided that we better try it out prior to the party–not that we have any doubt about how good it will be, but because we can't wait until next weekend to try it! Looks delicious!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. With 4 kids, I make pizza probably once a week or so. I will for sure give this a try. They look so yummy!


  4. Macaroni and Cheesecake says:

    Thanks everyone! So glad it came at a great time Rachel! Hope the bday party goes well…that is a great idea for a kids bday party!

  5. Meredith! says:

    wow this looks amazing!! i love home made pizza!

  6. That looks fantastic. We are going to try it soon!

  7. BroncoMom says:

    This looks so yummy. Wish I had a slice right here in front of me!

  8. Kim Hildebrandt says:

    I made this for a family friday night Pizza night. Both of these recipies were awesome! I will make this dough as my GO to for thin crust pizza. I am still seeking a deep dish Chicago pizza yeasty dough recipe but this is the BEST fro thin crust! Thanks

  9. Cora Bullock says:

    I should stop looking at that pizza or else I might not be able to stop myself and make this one. With this recipe, starting a pizza restaurant may not be that impossible, since it looks really delicious.