Blog Post

Pizza Napoletana Recipe

A wood fired oven cooks a pizza to perfection! Here’s an easy way to make your own pizza dough. The benefit of making your own dough is that it is surprisingly less time-consuming than going out and buying it, and you get an incredible pizza. (And you will become the most popular hangout in the neighborhood.)

Basic Pizza Dough


  • 1 package (2½ teaspoons) active dry yeast
  • 1 cup lukewarm water
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon flour


  • 1 sponge (recipe above)
  • 4½ cups (approx.) flour, sifted
  • 1 cup (approx.) lukewarm water
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon salt

Step One:
In a large bowl combine all sponge ingredients. Whisk well. Cover with a cloth and let sit 15 minutes. Sponge mixture should look foamy. If it does not look foamy, redo by either cooling or lowering the temperature of the water. If you do this 2 times and yeast does not look foamy, you may need new yeast.

Step Two:
To make the dough, add 4 cups of flour (setting aside the half a cup for dusting later), 1 cup of warm water, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, and the 1 tablespoon of salt into the bowl with the sponge mixture.

Mix well in a mixer or a food processor with a dough hook for 5 to 6 minutes. Alternatively you can mix by hand, keeping in mind that the dough will be and should be very sticky, so flour your hands.

Step Three:
Divide the dough into 4 quarters (we use a scale) and shape into slightly round disks for ten inch pizzas. For larger pizzas divide into three pieces. Lightly flour four 8-inch Tupperware type containers and put one ball of dough in each one. Put the lid on and let dough rise 2 hours in a consistently warm environment.


Spread one cup of flour on a good size dinner plate, remove the dough from the container, lay it on the flour in the plate and press gently, flipping it over and flouring the other side as well. This will make the job easier when you shape and work your dough.

Makes four, 8 to 10-inch crusts that can be garnished with the toppings of your choice.

Place your shaped pizza dough on a wood peel [link to accessories]. Your oven should be pre-heated at about 750F and the fire pushed to one side. Garnish your pizza and place on hot oven floor. After about 1 _ minute, rotate your pizza so that the other side is facing the fire. This is easily done with a pizza turner [link to accessories]. It takes your pizza about 3 minutes to be bubbly and ready to enjoy.

A word about the ingredients:

The better quality the ingredients are, the tastier the pizza… this is especially true in the choice of cheese. We prefer to use fresh mozzarella cheese for our pizza. Other good cheeses that can be used with great success: Italian fontina, gorgonzola, pecorino. Brie and goat cheeses are also very tasty on pizza. Experiment.


Cut your cheese in cubes instead of shredding it, this avoids it getting burned.

No need to cook tomato sauce as you would for pasta. Just use crushed tomato sauce from the can, spooning it over the dough in circular motion.

Buon appetito from Los Angeles Ovenworks!

Do you want to make mouth-watering recipes like this?
Click here to see our wood-fired ovens for the home.

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Comments (7)

  1. Linda June 15, 2018 at 10:43 am Reply

    I made this recipe exactly as written. The dough was not just sticky, I could almost pour out of bowl. 2 cups liquid seem excessive for only 4 cups of flour. Was this a misprint? I have yet to form into pizza rounds, but not expecting that to go well. Would appreciate feedback. Thanks!

    1. Anna July 18, 2018 at 3:17 pm Reply

      Hi Linda.
      The recipe actually calls for 4 1/2 cups of flour. We use all-purpose organic flour and this works well. However, keep in mind that some flours may need more or less water… Hope your batch came out tasty.

    2. Luca Nicoli January 19, 2019 at 9:46 am Reply

      Linda, I just saw your comment. The way the recipe is written is a little confusing. The first step in the process is to make the sponge. This requires 1 cup of water. Once the sponge has been allowed to sit for approx. 15 minutes, it is that cup of water that is used for the other 4 cups of flour. So, mix the flour and salt, then add the sponge. The 2 cup of water that the recipe calls for is not intended to be used, if not needed. As others have commented, all flours require different amount of water. So, when mixing the flour with the sponge, if you see that it is still hard, slowly add small amounts of water from the 2nd cup. But in no way do you need the full amount of the 2nd cup. I now understand why your dough came out watery. I have used this recipe every time I make my dough and it always comes out great. Enjoy!

  2. Nancy July 18, 2018 at 11:32 am Reply

    Linda Ash you are mixing the dough and you find that it’s not of the right consistency you can add more flour. I’ve made this recipe many times and each time it’s come out well. It might have been one time that I had to add some more flour but that was maybe my first time. I follow this recipe exactly

  3. Anna July 18, 2018 at 3:18 pm Reply

    Hi Linda.
    The recipe actually calls for 4 1/2 cups of flour. We use all-purpose organic flour and this works well. However, keep in mind that some flours may need more or less water… Hope your batch came out tasty.

  4. Catherine November 22, 2018 at 9:57 am Reply

    Best dough recipe ever. A year ago my husband bought me a Blackstone pizza oven and I went on a quest for the best crust. After countless recipies tried over the past year, I always come back to this one. The sticky dough is something that you used to working with after a while and makes a big difference in the end product. I’ve always used a stand mixed and never had problems. I know I should also use higher quality flour, however all purpose is all I’ve ever used and it works just fine. Not only do I love this for pizza, but it’s also a good base dough for rolls, focaccia, any type of bread really. 10/10 recommend this recipe.

  5. hermsoven December 18, 2018 at 6:44 pm Reply

    Excellent dough recipe. I used 4 cups of Caputo 00 flour and a little less water in my KA stand mixer, scraping down the sides of the bowl as required. In 6 minutes I had a beautiful, soft, slightly sticky dough ball, which I divided into 4 equal parts as measured in grams.. I was able to stretch the dough balls to about 12 inches in diameter with no sign of tearing. The resulting basic pizza with just garlic- laden homemade marinara sauce, cubed mozzarella and sprinkled Parmesan cheese looked great but was too
    bland. The dough needs more taste. I’ll try a variety of Italian herbs and spices next time.
    Thanks for this terrific and easy to tweak recipe.

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