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Hosting your own pizza party doesn’t have to be a stressful affair. With the right tools and a killer recipe, you’re sure to host a successful get together!
Want to throw a pizza party? We’re here to help! Over the past decade, we’ve become homemade pizza experts, perfecting recipes for the best pizza dough, pizza sauce and toppings. Our favorite is an Italian-style artisan pie: a thin, supple crust seared in a blazing hot oven, topped with simple, quality ingredients like peppery garden basil, sweet, juicy tomatoes, Pecorino cheese, and gooey fresh mozzarella.
Pizza Friday is one of our favorite ways to end the week, just the two of us or with friends, as we contend for the most creative and satisfying flavor combinations. To help you with your own pizza party, we’ve got a full list of resources below!
How to make pizza dough
The key to a great pizza is first in the dough. Dough making takes a bit of time to perfect, but practice makes perfect! Since the texture and feel of the dough is so important, we’ve created a video to show you the optimal texture and how to stretch the dough. We’ve got a few different methods for you too, from big sheet pans to cast iron skillets. Here are our favorite pizza dough recipes:
- Master recipe: Try this Pizza Dough Recipe for next-level pizza.
- Thin crust: This Thin Crust Pizza Dough is a bit easier: you can roll it out into a crispy thin crust.
- Pizza oven: Try Pizza Oven Dough if you have an outdoor pizza oven.
- Sheet pan: This Sheet Pan Pizza is extremely easy and makes a double-sized pizza in a large sheet pan.
- Pan pizza: It’s easy to make this single thick crust Pan Pizza right in a cast iron skillet.
- Focaccia pizza: This Focaccia Pizza makes a beautifully fluffy crust in a sheet pan.
- Gluten free: Got a gluten-free eater? Try this Gluten Free Pizza Dough.
Pizza party tools
The two essential tools for great pizza at home are a pizza stone, which makes for the perfect crisp crust, and a pizza peel to slide the pizza onto and off of the stone. If you really want to nerd out on pizza, a portable outdoor pizza oven makes next level pizza. But only the stone and peel are essential for the master recipe and thin crust pizza dough.
To slide your homemade pizza onto that pizza stone, we recommend a pizza peel. What’s a pizza peel? It’s a paddle shaped wooden tray with a handle: you’ve probably seen people in pizzerias use them! They’re essential to using a pizza stone. You can use a rimless baking sheet instead, but it’s much more difficult. Try this standard pizza peel!
To step up your pizza game a bit, try this conveyor pizza peel! It makes it very easy to slide the pizza on and off the pizza stone.
To make really, really good homemade pizza, you’ve got to have a pizza stone! You’ll preheat your oven with the pizza stone inside, which then makes the pizza crust perfectly crispy. Round pizza stone $36
Our favorite pizza recipes
With thousands of pizza topping combinations, there’s endless variety of pizzas you could serve at your pizza party! Here are a few of our favorite pizza topping recipes! Or, you could do a Make Your Own Pizza party. Here are a few of our top pizza pies:
- Best Pizza Margherita
- Greek Pizza
- White Pizza
- Spinach Artichoke Pizza
- Goat Cheese Pizza
- Pesto Pizza
- Perfect Neapolitan Pizza
- Best Ever Taco Pizza
- Veggie Pizza with Avocado
- Mexican Pizza
- Our Best Vegan Pizza Recipe
Make your own pizza party
Instead of making a bunch of different pizza flavors for your pizza party, why not let your guests join in the fun and do a Make Your Own Pizza party? This way, you can just have a bunch of pizza toppings and let guests decide what they’d like to add. Here are a few ideas for toppings to have on hand:
- Sauces: Easy Pizza Sauce, Basil Pesto, olive oil for brushing
- Mozzarella cheese
- Other cheeses: Feta cheese, goat cheese, burrata cheese, Parmesan cheese, or Pecorino cheese
- Vegetables: Chopped spinach leaves, chopped bell peppers, sliced red onions, thinly sliced tomatoes, avocado
- Preserved vegetables: Olives, roasted jarred red peppers, artichokes
- Sauteed vegetables: Sauteed mushrooms
- Herbs: Fresh basil, fresh thyme or fresh oregano
Appetizers for pizza party
Once you have all your pizza gear and toppings decided: what kind of appetizers for a pizza party? Here are a few salads and appetizers that would be perfect for a pizza party:
- Ranch Dip and veggies
- Classic Hummus or Glowing Green Hummus and veggies
- Burrata Salad
- Tomato Dip with Grilled Bread
- Strawberry Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette
- Chopped Salad
Sides for a pizza party
Want side dishes to pair with pizza? Check out our 10 Best Sides to Go with Pizza. It also includes specific pairings for some of our favorite pizza recipes.
- 500 grams* Tipo 00 or all-purpose flour (3 ⅓ cups)
- 8 grams instant or active dry yeast (2 teaspoons)
- 7 grams kosher salt (1 teaspoon)
- 338 grams warm water (1 ¼ cups + 3 tablespoons)
- 13 grams olive oil (1 tablespoon)
- Combine the flour, salt, and yeast in a bowl or the bowl of your stand mixer. Stir to combine. Add the water and olive oil and stir until a raggy dough forms. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface.
- Knead the dough by pushing with the base of your palm, then reforming it into a ball. Continue kneading for 8 minutes until the dough feels pillowy and has a smooth, stretchy exterior. If the dough is very sticky, add a small amount of flour while kneading. Alternatively: attach the dough hook to a stand mixer and start the mixer on medium-low speed, then allow the mixer to knead for 8 minutes.
- After the kneading is finished, divide the dough into 3 equal pieces. Using floured hands, gently shape each half into a boule (ball shape) by folding the dough under itself. Set each boule on a floured surface and dab the dough with a bit of olive oil to keep it moist. Cover all boules with a damp towel and allow them to rise until doubled in size, about 45 minutes to 1 hour.
- The dough can be used immediately. However for the BEST flavor, transfer the dough to separate sealed containers, large enough for the dough to double in size again, and store in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 days. (Alex and I don’t always do this, but we try when possible because it makes for a noticeably nutty, unique flavor that truly is the best homemade pizza dough you’ve ever had.)
- **If you’re using the dough after refrigerating: The day of serving, remove the dough from the containers, place it on a lightly floured surface covered with a towel, and allow it to come to room temperature before stretching, 30 to 45 minutes.
- To stretch the dough, place it on a lightly floured surface and gently press it into a circle, flipping several times and adding a pinch of flour if it is too sticky. Once you have about an 8-inch circle, pick up the dough and gently drape it over the knuckles on both of your hands. Slowly rotate it around, allowing gravity to stretch it into a circle about 11 inches in diameter. Do not overwork or fold the dough. If the dough starts to resist stretching, put it down and allow it to rest for a few minutes, at which point it will stretch more easily.
- We bake our pizzas at 500F and use a pizza peel to transfer it to a preheated pizza stone in the oven: the bake time is around 5 to 7 minutes. See our pizza recipe posts for baking instructions.
- Category: Main Dish
- Method: Baked
- Cuisine: Italian
Keywords: How to Throw a Pizza Party, Pizza Dough, Pizza Dough Recipe