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Perfect and Easy Gluten Free Pizza Dough

Updated: Oct 8, 2023

It has taken me years to perfect my gluten free pizza dough recipe. Spending countless hours researching techniques on how to make a gluten free dough rise properly while still maintaining a light and airy texture is no easy feat.

But I did it. Because, a perfect gluten free pizza dough recipe is not just about an amazing pizza. It is about the memories we make eating that pizza. I don't know about you, but our weekends lately are usually spent picking out a movie, cozying up on the couch in our sweatpants and indulging in pizza with our young kids. If you know me then you know how much I love to get dressed up and go out. To put on my silver sparkle heels and hit the town. However, pizza night with my family has been special. A time for us all to just relax. This lockdown has been hard on everyone, but one thing I hope we do not give up is our pizza and movie nights together. Granted, we do sometimes skip the movie and go right to a tv series. We are loving the show 'The Goldbergs' and are binge watching it on Hulu. It's about a loud, hilarious, Jewish family... so basically us! What's not to love?

This pizza dough is made even easier by using a bread machine to do all of the work for you. Seriously, it takes me less than 4 minutes for me to measure out all my ingredients and plop them into the bread machine. I push a button and then I have about 90 minutes to do whatever else I need to do that day. The only actual work is prepping the toppings that I want to put on the pizza. We are obsessed with pizza and love lots of choices, so I always make 3 giant pizzas. Even though we are only 2 adults and 2 children, ages 7 and 3, we like to have more than we need. And leftovers. Who doesn't love leftover pizza?

Pretty much every week I make the same 3 pizzas:

1. Spinach, Tomato and Fresh Garlic

2. Bbq Chicken with Pineapple

3. Half Cheese & Half Salami... for the kids of course

The crust is crispy on the bottom but so incredibly soft and buttery on the inside. I do go a bit crazy with my toppings. I like everything to be fresh! I even grill chicken breasts the day before and make my own bbq mixture to brush on top of the chicken and to use for my bbq sauce on the pizza. The spinach and tomato pizza has about 6 cloves of fresh pressed garlic, because once you are married for over 10 years no one cares about the amount of garlic on your pizza.

For the dough I cannot stress enough how much easier it is with a bread machine. Of course you can make pizza dough manually, but why? Invest in a bread machine. Now, the good ones range between 100-150€ ($125-175). The one I have is from Beem and it even has a gluten free bake setting for when I am baking homemade gluten free bread. I use this machine for EVERYTHING! German pretzels, donuts, cinnamon rolls, bagels, breads, and yeast based cakes. I use my bread machine more than I use my slow cooker!

Here are all the ingredients that I use for my pizza dough.

The bottle has sparkling water. Nothing flavored. Just normal tap water with added gas. I love to use sparkling water instead of still water because the bubbles help to give the gluten free dough just a bit of extra airiness and to help the dough rise a smidge more.

Tip: You have to make sure that your water is not too hot. I once read that it should be warm but not boiling. That is totally wrong. It should be just barely warm to the touch. I highly recommend getting a candy thermometer if you do not have one already. Technically the water should not go about 38C or 100F. If the water is too hot it will not interact with the yeast properly resulting in a dough that will not have risen.

This was just a bit too warm, so I added an ice cube, waited for it to melt, and the temperature was perfect!

With a bread machine you must always start by adding your wet ingredients and then you add your dry on the top. Do not stir! I like doing the 4 corners method, mostly because then I know for sure I didn't forget anything. However, you do not have to do this. The yeast goes right in the middle. I like to dig a small hole for the yeast. Finally, close your bread machine and press the dough setting. Then back away. Go do something, whatever you want, for 90 minutes.

I used my bread machine twice. Once for a batch for 2 pizza doughs and then again for just 1 pizza dough. (I just halved the recipe). However I wanted to see if the dough was significantly more wet if it would taste better. So now I will show you pictures and videos from two different times. (When I say more wet, I mean about 1-2 tablespoons more water)

Here is a video of the dough in the beginning of the mixing stage. It is a bit wet which is fine. It can stick a little to the sides and bottom. Better to have a dough that is more wet than too dry. This is a video of the more wet dough. This is what you want to have. Use this video for future reference.

Here you can see the dryer dough being mixed. The taste in the end was still very good. A solid B+ on the grading scale. But if you are going for 100% greatness, make sure your dough looks like the video above. You can always add a bit of water or more flour once your bread machine has started. Just open the lid and add if you feel it necessary.

The dry dough: Here is the dough after it has mixed for about 25 minutes. I left the flour on the side so that you can see how much it rose after 60 minutes. This is a picture of the more dry dough. It still tasted great but the other was just over the top better. Why am I including this? Because I want you to still see that the dough rose.

Look how much is grew!

Here is the more wet dough after it had mixed and rested, completing the 90 minute dough cycle. See how sticky it is when I press into it. This is the PERFECT consistency that you are looking to achieve.

Make sure you have a clean service ready that is lightly floured. You are going to need around 1/4 cup of flour to dust your service. You want to knead the dough into the flour that is sprinkled upon your board so that the dough is no longer sticky. The dough pictured below is enough for 1 very large pizza.

Once you have rolled out your dough I like to crimp the edges so that it forms a nice crust. This video was taken from the more dry dough. You can see that it is cracking a bit in places. This dough was also harder to roll out while the more wet dough was incredibly pliable and stretchy.

Now is my favorite part. TOPPINGS! When I make pizza I don't actually make my own tomato sauce. I know, I know. How could I? But, in my defense, this canned pizza sauce is so delicious and is just the perfect amount for 2 of my pizzas. It's made from 100% Italian tomatoes and tastes so fresh.

No fear, I do make my own bbq sauce and I make sure it sits for a day in my refrigerator so that its flavor really can develop.

Tip: Grill chicken breasts about 2-3 minutes less than what you normally would do. You are cooking the chicken again (when you bake the pizza) and under-grilling the chicken breasts ensures a juicy chicken that is not dry and overcooked when baked on the pizza

And I do add pineapple to my pizza. I love it. The sweet acidic pineapple against the tanginess of the bbq sauce pairs so well. Many people say pineapple doesn't belong on a pizza. Well, you're wrong. At least here in Germany we love pineapple on pizza. Granted Germans also love ingredients like tuna fish, corn or even seafood on their pizza so who am I to say what belongs on a pizza.

I love to pile on my ingredients, covering every centimeter of my pizza dough. I do not skimp on my toppings.

OMG all that garlic! In my opinion you can never have enough garlic! Also, this layering process is super important. Make sure the fresh spinach is under the tomatoes. The tomatoes are fresh and will release a lot of liquid when baking. The spinach will also help to absorb some of the liquid adding even more flavor to your pizza. If you do tomatoes under the spinach the liquid will leak out of the pizza onto your pan.

Even as I was making this pizza my kids went nuts. My youngest was dancing around the kitchen singing, PIZZA! PIZZA! She just couldn't wait. My husband, who is German and grew up eating Italian pizza, claims that my pizza is much better. He might just be saying that because he loves me, but I do believe this pizza crust is award winning. Gluten free or not, it could not be lighter and airier in texture with just the perfect bite of buttery flakiness. I cannot begin to tell you how many gluten free pizza doughs I have tried in the last 10 years that were hard and dense. That tasted like cardboard.

Not anymore! I guarantee this pizza will be the best homemade gluten free pizza you have ever made.


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