Pizza Margherita in 4 easy steps

Pizza Margherita in 4 easy steps

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(321 ratings)

Prep: 25 mins Cook: 10 mins


Makes 2 pizzas, serves 4

Even a novice cook can master the art of pizza with our simple step-by-step guide. Bellissimo

Nutrition and extra info

  • Pizzas uncooked
  • Easily doubled / halved
  • Vegetarian

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal431
  • fat15g
  • saturates7g
  • carbs59g
  • sugars2g
  • fibre3g
  • protein19g
  • salt1.87g
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    For the base

    • 300g strong bread flour
    • 1 tsp instant yeast (from a sachet or a tub)



      Yeast is a living, single-cell organism. As the yeast grows, it converts its food (in the form…

    • 1 tsp salt
    • 1 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
      olive oil

      Olive oil

      ol-iv oyl

      Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

    For the tomato sauce

    • 100ml passata
    • handful fresh basil or 1 tsp dried



      Most closely associated with Mediterranean cooking but also very prevalent in Asian food, the…

    • 1 garlic clove, crushed

    For the topping

    • 125g ball mozzarella, sliced
    • handful grated or shaved parmesan (or vegetarian alternative)



      Parmesan is a straw-coloured hard cheese with a natural yellow rind and rich, fruity flavour. It…

    • handful cherry tomatoes, halved

    To finish

    • handful basil leaves (optional)



      Most closely associated with Mediterranean cooking but also very prevalent in Asian food, the…


    1. Make the base: Put the flour into a large bowl, then stir in the yeast and salt. Make a well, pour in 200ml warm water and the olive oil and bring together with a wooden spoon until you have a soft, fairly wet dough. Turn onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 5 mins until smooth. Cover with a tea towel and set aside. You can leave the dough to rise if you like, but it’s not essential for a thin crust.

    2. Make the sauce: Mix the passata, basil and crushed garlic together, then season to taste. Leave to stand at room temperature while you get on with shaping the base.

    3. Roll out the dough: If you’ve let the dough rise, give it a quick knead, then split into two balls. On a floured surface, roll out the dough into large rounds, about 25cm across, using a rolling pin. The dough needs to be very thin as it will rise in the oven. Lift the rounds onto two floured baking sheets.

    4. Top and bake: Heat oven to 240C/fan 220C /gas 8. Put another baking sheet or an upturned baking tray in the oven on the top shelf. Smooth sauce over bases with the back of a spoon. Scatter with cheese and tomatoes, drizzle with olive oil and season. Put one pizza, still on its baking sheet, on top of the preheated sheet or tray. Bake for 8-10 mins until crisp. Serve with a little more olive oil, and basil leaves if using. Repeat step for remaining pizza.

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    Comments, questions and tips

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    Melanie Roderick's picture
    Melanie Roderick
    10th Mar, 2019
    Absolutely love this recipe I used grated mozzarella instead and put garlic salt around the crust just before’s a must!
    Kristen Gickel's picture
    Kristen Gickel
    10th Feb, 2019
    Great 'quick pizza dough' recipe. I usually make pizza dough leaving it to prove and so forth but was looking for a quick recipe today due to being short of time. This was absolutely perfect. The measurements are fine - I do not understand some of the other comments, it is not overly sticky, once you knead the dough on a light dusting of flour it is easy to roll out. Made a great garlic pizza bread and couldn't be happier considering I didn't need to prove the dough and had this all done and cooked in less than 30 mins! Family were very happy with the result. Will be using this recipe again!
    20th Jan, 2019
    I made the dough part of this recipe last night and only used approx 120ml water thanks to the reviews and it turned out perfect. I made one big pizza but next time I’ll make two and roll them out thinner as it seemed to take forever to cook through.
    Pizza Coupons's picture
    Pizza Coupons
    9th Jan, 2019
    Tried this last night and it wasawesome! Thanks ! - Best Regards
    FamilyLee's picture
    10th Dec, 2018
    Super easy recipe I use all the time with my kids. I find 200ml water is perfect unlike other reviewers, and usually rest for 10-15mins before rolling out. I add 1tsp dried oregano to the dough for extra flavour, and we play around with various toppings. A favourite simple tea in our house!
    6th Dec, 2018
    I'm sure there's too much liquid in this recipe as written - as I've learned to my cost in the past with sticky messes all round! However if you are stingy with both the oil and the water this recipe can produce an excellent pizza base. Rolls out well and doesn't stick to either the peel (if you've got one) or the pizza pan. Cut the amount of water by about 20% to being with, only add more if you need it, and enjoy a great pizza!
    Farin Habib's picture
    Farin Habib
    30th Oct, 2018
    I agree with some of the comments that there is too much water in the recipe. The dough was too wet to handle so used less water and that worked better. More seasoning also needed and I naked the dough first for 5 minutes then added topping and returned do oven. Otherwise good recipe fod kids too.
    17th Sep, 2018
    I have tried this recipie a couple of times now and am feeling like a bit of a muppet that i just can't seem to get the dough right! Each time I try and roll out the dough it is super springy and just contracts back into a thick base that then won't cook properly in the oven leaving a stodgy base. No matter how hard I seem to try and beat the dough into submission and get it nice and thin it just doesn't seem to cook properly. What might I be doing wrong?! I place another oven sheet under the pizza as suggested. I am also using instant yeast out of a sachet as per the ingredients but might there be different types? I have even watched the video and can't seem to see what I am doing differently. Please help as I really want to be able to do this one!!
    Tony Hook's picture
    Tony Hook
    26th Oct, 2018
    Try these, they might help 1. Rolling dough takes more force than with pastry etc, try rolling on a lower down surface as this will make it easier to apply more pressure. 2. Try letting the dough rest for a few mins when it starts to spring back and then try again, rest and roll. 3. If you are kneading the dough knead less or not at all, if you have let it rise just knock it back and flatten by hand into a round and then roll out. 4. Strong flour has more gluten than plain flour and that is what gives bread/pizza it's 'chew/bite'. try substituting some of the strong flour with plain, experiment a bit. Hope this helps
    28th May, 2018
    I've just made 2 pizza's with the recipe and the dough come out awesome. The amount of everything was perfect. Thankyou for sharing. I will be saving this recipe to use again.... :)


    sundaygirl006's picture
    2nd Jul, 2019
    How many calories per pizza?
    goodfoodteam's picture
    3rd Jul, 2019
    Thanks for your question. This recipe serves four, making two pizzas (each pizza serves 2). This means the calorie count shown needs to be doubled to give you the calories for one pizza.
    26th Jul, 2018
    Can I use just normal flour or does it have to be bread flour ?
    goodfoodteam's picture
    2nd Aug, 2018
    Thanks for your question. Strong bread flour is used for pizza dough as the higher gluten content allows elasticity, creating a lighter and more aerated result. We do not recommend using plain flour.
    15th Jun, 2016
    Where can I find a big thick cast iron baking tray? I have the one from Kitchencraft but it has only 27cm diameter which is quite small. Thanks
    17th Dec, 2015
    can i put in plain white so i dont havt to go out and buy a new paket of flour
    goodfoodteam's picture
    22nd Dec, 2015
    A strong flour is usually recommended, as it has a higher gluten content that traps air and creates the open doughy texture, but plain flour will still work very well for a pizza, we wouldn’t really recommend using it for a loaf of bread though. 
    7th Nov, 2015
    Can I freeze after shaping and adding tomato base and cheese?
    goodfoodteam's picture
    19th Nov, 2015
    Yes, you can freeze unbaked pizza. Don't worry about proving it first, shape, top then get it into the freezer as soon as you can, open-freezing it on parchment lined baking trays. Wrap once solid.  They will keep like this for 6 weeks. To bake: unwrap and thaw at room temperature before baking according to the recipe or bake from frozen allowing approx. an extra 15 mins.
    29th Sep, 2015
    How long does it need to be left to rise? Thank you


    LydiaLeavyJones's picture
    10th Mar, 2019
    Grease the baking trays, and use more flour!
    Sam Coulthard's picture
    Sam Coulthard
    6th Mar, 2019
    It is really easy and quick.
    22nd Feb, 2017
    Excellent authentic thin crust pizza! Super easy. BUT PLEASE read everyone's comments before cooking as they are truly very helpful. In summary though I found: (1) You will need loads of extra flour when kneading as the dough is really very wet. (2) Oil your hands a little (olive oil) at the beginning of kneading to stop sticking and panic. (3) I cooked the bases first for about 4 minutes then added toppings and cooked for a further 8-10mins. My bases although I rolled them really thin and pre cooked them still didn't seem totally 100% cooked but we gobbled them down anyway as they tasted great. Next time I'll cook them for 6 mins first. For the topping I used DOUBLE the amount of passata as we like a good rich tommy base. Overall a great first attempt at pizzas washed down with loads of red wine. Super Recipe. Super easy pizzas that actually taste and look authentic. If you're a deep pan lover you will not like these pizzas! They are for the thin crust fan club ;) Enjoy :) x
    19th Oct, 2014
    We used Plain flour rather than Strong and the recipe still tasted lovely!!
    12th Jun, 2014
    Add a teaspoon of golden caster sugar to the pizza dough as it'll help the yeast. For the tomato sauce base, you can use a couple of tablespoons of regular pasta sauce which most of us have tucked away in our cupboards. Add dried basil to the pasta sauce, a pinch of sugar and season to taste. You probably wont need all the water, i never use that much when i make this recipe. Use a bit of common sense and gradually add the water the dough until it forms a kneadable ball. I then drizzle the dough with oil and need for 5mins. Then cover and let it rise for an hour to give the base a nice texture. I also oil the surface that I'm going to roll the dough out onto rather than flour so it doesn't dry out the mix! This is a fantastic recipe that is completely adaptable for your taste! X
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