Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Delicious Multi-Grain Sourdough Pizza Dough

Homemade pizza makes a regular rotation at our house. The kids love to top their own. They put the pepperoni on so that it makes a smiley face and they can put as little or as much sauce on as they like. I usually like to top my pizza with healthier toppings like roasted red peppers and mushrooms and other vegetables. Sometimes I use basil pesto in place of traditional pizza sauce. The possibilities are endless when you make your own pizza.

When I came across this recipe for multi-grain pizza dough, I thought I'd try it and see if I could make the kids' pepperoni pizza a little bit healthier too. It's a gamble - you just never know if the kids will go for it, or if they'll turn their noses up at a healthier version of the original, push their plates aside, and promptly ask for ice cream for dessert.

This time the gamble was worth it, because we all loved this pizza dough! Even my pickiest eater liked it! The flavor was wonderful and it baked up beautifully. I like it too, because it creates a use for the unfed sourdough starter in my fridge that would otherwise be thrown away. {Find the all-white-flour sourdough pizza dough recipe here at King Arthur Flour.}

Tips for making pizza:

  • Pizza dough should be soft and not too stiff. Only add as much flour as you need to keep it from sticking to your hands while kneading. You can always use a little more flour when shaping the pizza if it's a little sticky.
  • If you have a clear plastic straight-sided canister like this one from Rubbermaid or this one from King Arthur Flour, place the unrisen dough in the canister and mark the level with a piece of tape. It's easier to see when the dough has doubled.
  • Use a preheated pizza stone for best results - allow at least 45 minutes for the stone to heat up. Alternately, use a preheated cookie sheet. The cookie sheet will be preheated whenever the oven comes to temperature.
  • You can shape, top and bake the pizza directly on parchment paper - just slide the paper right onto the pizza stone from a cookie sheet or pizza peel
  • For traditional pizzas like pepperoni, I prefer a mixture of shredded provolone and mozzarella cheeses. I also prefer to use part-skim mozzarella - it's drier than whole-milk mozzarella or fresh mozzarella so it doesn't get as liquidy when baked. Fresh mozzarella, however, is great on a Margherita Pizza with fresh tomatoes and basil.
  • Lightly saute any vegetables to desired tenderness before placing on the pizza and sprinkle the cheese on top.

Multigrain Sourdough Pizza Crust
adapted from Jen at My Kitchen Addiction

Makes 2 medium pizzas

• 3/4 cup warm water
• 1/2 teaspoon dry active yeast
• 1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
• 1 cup unfed sourdough starter
• 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
• 1 heaping tablespoon pizza dough flavor (optional- I omitted)
• 2 teaspoon Kosher salt
• 1/2 cup whole wheat flour (or use white whole wheat flour)
• 1/2 cup whole rye (pumpernickel) flour
• 1/2 cup milled golden flax seed
• About 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

Whisk together the warm water, yeast, and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Add in the sourdough starter, olive oil, pizza dough flavor, and Kosher salt. Mix until well combined.

Add the whole wheat flour, rye flour, and flax seed to the bowl, and beat vigorously (with a dough whisk or a wooden spoon) to combine. The mixture will be thick and sticky. Gradually add in the all purpose flour, stirring to incorporate the flour. When the dough pulls from the sides of the bowl, use your hands to knead in the remaining flour until smooth (about 5 minutes). Use just enough flour to keep the dough from sticking to your hands and the bowl.

Shape the dough into a ball, and transfer it to an oiled bowl. Cover and let rise in a warm place until the dough has doubled in size (this could take 2 - 4 hours). At this point, the dough may be divided, lightly oiled, and refrigerated for 2 days or frozen for one month in a zip top plastic bag. Remove the dough from the plastic baggie while still cold, then bring the dough to room temperature before shaping and baking.

When you are ready to bake the pizzas, preheat a pizza stone in the oven to 475°F. Split the dough in half and shape each half on a piece of parchment paper. Top with your favorite toppings and bake on the pizza stone for about 10 – 12 minutes, until the crust is golden.


  1. This sounds so good! The photo has me drooling into my morning coffee.

    Thanks for sharing your recipe...will have to try this on Mr Secret Agent.

    Janet xox

  2. Great now I want pizza for dinner! Are those mushrooms on that awesome healthy crust?!

  3. Yes, lots of mushrooms! and onions and pesto and cheese. Yum!

  4. Madison made me promise to make this for her when we get home!



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