Making pizza - photo of a combination pizza. A round pizza crust with red sauce, pineapple chunks, olives, bacon and pepperoni with white cheese on top.

How To Make The Best Homemade Pizza Recipe

Homemade pizza has always been a big part of our childhood. Our mom grew up next to an Italian family and the tastes and smells of her Italian friend’s home was a wonderful part of her childhood and became part of her.
    She (her neighbor) taught her the secret of a good Italian sauce, how to make pasta, and making pizza and about the secrets of lasagna.  The memories are sweet for her, so in turn mom shared those memories and recipes with us.
Making pizza has always been a big part of our childhood. Our mom grew up next to an Italian family and the tastes and smells of her Italian friend’s home was a wonderful part of her childhood and became part of her.


Now the smell of garlic sauteing in the kitchen has become part of our lives. For this recipe, you are going to need a good Italian sauce.  If you don’t feel up to it, you can buy sauce, but trust us… it is just not the same.

So, come along with us.  Grab a seat in Auntie Betty’s kitchen and let her teach you how to make pizza.



Making homemade pizza - homemade pizza dough in a metal bowl with green paint.  The dough has risen up and over the edge of the bowl and pushing up on the plastic wrap making a bubble.


Now Auntie Betty would always go down to Lucci’s Deli the local Italian shop by bus and she would buy their already prepared dough for her pizza. But our mom always made her own pizza dough wanting to make sure that we had the best ingredients available and to avoid hydrogenated oils, soy, and high fructose corn syrup. So if you do use a store bought dough, next time try to use the dough recipe. It is so good!

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Making homemade pizza - Photo of a canning jar with homemade pizza sauce, shredded white and yellow cheese, slices of pepperoni and a bunch of fresh parsley.


Homemade Pizza Recipe

When Making Pizza You Can Use A Bread Maker Or Do It By Hand


It can be made in a bread maker and put on the dough setting instead of baking it or you can make it in your stand mixer.  I know it is faster just buying it, but the homemade dough is wonderful.  There is something so delicious about the yeasty smell in your kitchen.  So, put on some really good music (how about some Sinatra?), and let’s make some dough!  Grab your apron and let’s get started!

We found this to be the best pizza dough recipe. We love a good thick crust pizza so this is our go to recipe for our pizza night.

 What you will need for thick crust pizza dough

Thick Crust Pizza Dough Recipe


1 Cup warm milk or warm water

1 Free Range Egg

1 Teaspoon Celtic Sea Salt

2 Tablespoons Raw Sugar

3 Cups We like to use the best flour we can so we use Organic all purpose Flour but you use what you have.

1 1/2 Teaspoon active dry yeast (we have never tried this with instant yeast)


If you are using a bread machine add wet ingredients to the bottom of the pan then add flour. In separate corners add yeast, salt, sugar, and dry milk. Turn the bread machine on the dough and press “start”. Leave it alone until It beeps and turns off. Then pull the ball of dough and sit it in an oiled bowl with oiled cling wrap over the top and let the pizza dough rise again until you are ready to use it.

If you don’t have a bread machine get a big bowl and pour the warm milk into it and sugar. Sprinkle the yeast on top and let sit for 10 to 15 minutes until the yeast mixture is puffy. This will assure you that your yeast is good. If it does not get puffy you will need new yeast and to start again with new milk and sugar.

Add to yeast mixture with with your dry ingredients.  We like to use our stand mixer for this with the dough hook, but you can do it with a bowl and big wooden spoon. Mix until the dough is elastic and a nice dough ball has been formed and then cover with oiled plastic wrap to rise in a warm place in a greased bowl for about an hour or until doubled in size.

You are almost there friends! It won’t be long until you are eating really great pizza your whole family will love.

Preheat your oven and your pizza stone if you have one to 425 degrees F (220c.). This is also amazing cooked in a large cast-iron pan. Pre-heat this pan too. The dough is cooked on a pretty high temperature but it gives it the traditional pizza dough texture.


On a lightly floured work surface with a bit of cornmeal and pinch of salt, roll out the dough to the desired size on a counter. This recipe makes one large pizza dough but you can do individual pizzas, a couple of medium pizzas. Now to move your pizza dough to the pan or to the pizza stone so the finished product looks like a pizza. After you roll out the dough sprinkle a little bit of cornmeal on top and fold it in half. This keeps it from sticking to itself. Sprinkle a little more and fold in half again (in 4ths).  Remove your preheated pizza stone and place the folded dough inside the pan and then quickly unfold the dough to make a circle.  Place in the preheated oven and bake for 7-10 minutes, remove it from the oven when golden brown. 

Take a knife and tap the bottom of the dough and it should make a tapping sound and not be doughy.  

Add a small amount of your Italian tomato sauce and whatever your favorite toppings on top, and bake until cheese is melted (about six minutes or so).

Using oven mitts if you are using a pan or a pizza peel if using a pizza stone remove the pizza from the oven and using a pizza cutting wheel slice it in desired size slices and serve.


Now you have two options.

You can make homemade pizza sauce or buy it in a jar.   We love the homemade sauce so let’s proceed with that. So, while your dough is rising let’s start our sauce! Grab your stock pot and garlic and let’s begin.






1-2 Tbsp of good-quality olive oil

4-5 cloves of fresh garlic instead of using a press I prefer to chop my garlic for this sauce

A Large 29 oz. can of Hunt’s Tomato Sauce

Small can of Tomato Paste

1 Tbsp of Dry Parsley

1/4 cup or so of Grated Parmesan and Romano Cheese



First, you will chop your garlic and set it aside.

Put a tablespoon or so of good olive oil in your saucepan and turn it comparatively low.

Add to these 4 – 5 cloves of chopped garlic. Cook slowly while stirring until just fragrant and golden but not brown. If you overcook the garlic it will give your sauce a sharp taste that will ruin your sauce but done until lightly golden gives your sauce a really great flavor.

Next, add a can of tomato sauce and small tomato paste to your pot.

Stir well.

Finally, add your grated Romano cheese together with some Parmesan cheese to your pizza sauce and season with parsley flakes.


Time To Simmer

Cover and simmer the pizza sauce for at least 10 minutes as a result it will allow all of the flavors mingle as mom would always say and it will thicken your pizza sauce to perfection.

Now that your dough has risen, and your sauce has simmered, let’s start looking for our pizza toppings. We have cheese – freshly grated

​​​​Making homemade pizza - photo of halves of french bread spread with provolone cheese slices, pepperoni and olive slices on a pizza stone and the pizza stone is sitting on a basket to protect the surface of the table.


Homemade Pizza – French Bread Pizzas

Don’t have time to make the dough and let it rise?  Use some hoagie rolls or a loaf of French bread from the grocery store (or make our recipe ) for some crisp bread pizzas. Preheat your oven to 450* F.

  • Take the bread and slice it lengthwise
  • For extra flavor baste some melted butter with garlic on the top
  • Spoon pizza sauce on top of the bread and spread it across it
  • Add your favorite toppings on top. How about some sliced mushrooms and sliced olives for a vegetarian French Bread pizza?  It is so easy.   
  • Sprinkle with parmesan cheese
  • Add shredded cheese or fresh mozzarella
  • Put your pizza on a cookie sheet in a preheated oven 
  • Bake for 13 min or until your cheese is melted and bubbly.
  • For a crispier crust just leave it in a bit longer. Make sure to keep an eye on it!


Making homemade pizza - photo of hand spreading olives and mushrooms on a homemade pizza.  Red pizza sauce is spread on the pizza dough.


You can make all kinds of different pizzas using the same pizza base to make your favorite pizza.


Learn how to make the perfect thin crust pizza here too!


Homemade Pizza – Vegetable Pizzas


Vegetable pizzas are really delicious.

  • Choose your favorite crust and roll out the dough. 
  • Put the dough on a pizza pan, pizza stone, or even a cookie sheet.
  • Then spoon on the pizza sauce.  

You can choose your favorite toppings such as 

  • onions
  • peppers
  • mushrooms
  • olives
  • tomatoes
  • sun-dried tomatoes
  • jalapenos
  • red pepper flakes
  • marinated eggplant
  • artichoke hearts
  • small broccoli flowerets
  • sauteed zucchini dices

Add your favorite vegetarian cheese or use your favorite cheese shreds.

Put in a preheated 450* F oven until the bottom of the pizza is done when tapped with a knife and the cheese is melted


Homemade Pizza – Hawaiian Pizza


Hawaiian pizza is so flavorful and we really love it! 

  • Pick your favorite crust below
  • Preheat your oven to 450* F when crust is done
  • Roll out the pizza dough to the shape of your pan
  • Place the dough onto the pan

Great toppings to use are

  • Bbq sauce
  • Ham slices
  • Diced bacon
  • provolone cheese or mozzerella cheese
  • parmesagne cheese
  • mushrooms 
  • olives



​​​​Making homemade pizza - Closeup photo of a homemade round pizza cooked on a pizza stone with homemade sauce, olives, chopped bacon, pepperoni and pieces of sweet pineapple.


Making Homemade Pizza – Combo Pizza


A combo pizza is the best of both worlds.


  • Choose your pizza dough recipe below
  • When dough has finished rising make your sauce recipe below
  • Roll out the dough and place it in your favorite pan
  • Prepare your toppings like olives
  • mushrooms
  • onions
  • bell peppers
  • pineapple
  • ham
  • bacon
  • jalapenos
  • cheese
  • sausage


This one is a one-of-a-kind pizza with pineapple chunks, uncured (nitrate and nitrite-free) pepperoni with diced olives.  with a mix of mozzarella and cheddar cheeses melted on top.


​​​Making homemade pizza - photo of a cheese and pepperoni pizza in a rectangular stone cookie sheet with homemade sauce and cheddar cheese


Making Homemade Pizza – Classic Pepperoni Pizza


This homemade pizza is cooked on a stoneware cookie sheet. It is a simple pepperoni and cheddar cheese with a garnish of fresh flat leaf parsley from the Cottage Garden.


Are you ready to start making homemade pizza?

Let’s choose the crust

Other Italian Recipes

Learn how to make these desserts too



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