How to Throw a Pizza Party

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!

Pizza party

Over hundreds of years, pizza has grown from a lowly peasant Italian food to a worldwide phenomenon. There’s variations of all kinds, from frozen to delivery to deep dish. But our favorite is the Italian-style: 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 is endlessly versatile; nearly anything you can find in your pantry or farmer’s market can transform into a topping. 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. Our love for the Italian pizza was solidified on our honeymoon in Rome (which we revisited 7 years later). Since then, we’ve been working to perfect the art and science of pizza making at home. To help you with your own pizza party, we’ve got a full list of resources below.

Related: How to Make Artisan Pizza at Home | Homemade Pizza for Beginners

Pizza party | Pizza dough

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, Alex created a video a few years ago that shows the optimal texture. We’ve also included our two tried-and-true methods for dough-making, one with a food processor and one with a stand mixer.

Here are all our secrets to making perfect pizza dough:

Pizza party pizza peel
Margherita pizza on a pizza peel

Essential pizza 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. And if you really want to nerd out on pizza, a portable outdoor pizza oven. But only the stone and peel are essential; here are our recommendations:

Pizza peel

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. Standard pizza peel $21

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. Conveyor pizza peel $57

What's the best pizza stone?

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

Related: What’s the Best Pizza Stone? | How to Clean a Pizza Stone

Our favorite pizza recipes

With literally 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: see below.

Pizza party

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: Best Homemade Pizza Sauce, Basil Pesto, Olive oil for brushing
  • Shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Feta cheese, goat cheese, burrata cheese, Parmesan cheese, or Pecorino cheese
  • Chopped spinach leaves, chopped bell peppers, sliced red onions, thinly sliced tomatoes, avocado
  • Olives, roasted jarred red peppers, artichokes
  • Sauteed mushrooms
  • Fresh basil, fresh thyme or fresh oregano
Chopped salad recipe | Radish salad
Radish chopped salad is a fitting for a pizza party

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:

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About the Authors

Sonja Overhiser

Cookbook Author and writer

Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.

Alex Overhiser

Cookbook Author and photographer

Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.


  • Reply
    Mikkel Magnuson
    December 28, 2015 at 7:56 am

    Hi ! Thanks so much for all the wonderful recipes and the enthusiasm you have shown through out the year through your blogs. I apprecitate your hardwork and patience . I am going to try this recipe surely this week. Happy new Year to you in advance.

  • Reply
    Eva R.
    January 23, 2016 at 8:41 pm

    We rarely repeat recipes, but your Greek pizza makes an appearance on our table more than a few times a month! Thanks for the lovely pizza inspiration!

    • Reply
      January 31, 2016 at 8:57 pm

      So fun! The Greek pizza is one of our favorites too. Thanks for letting us know!

  • Reply
    Malin Andersson
    March 18, 2016 at 8:35 am

    Actually, I am planning for a pizza party. Therefore, I came across your blog for new recipe and I am going to cook this recipe. 

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