Making Pizza with your Bread Maker

You may never buy a pizza again after you try some of these classic and contemporary pizza and flat bread recipes.


Most bread machines have a cycle called, “Pizza Dough.” This particular dough cycle allows you to use very basic ingredients in a certain proportion to make a perfect pizza dough in anywhere from an hour to an hour and a half. It’s purely a dough cycle, but the dough that emerges is elastic and easy to roll into a square sheet or circle to make the foundation for an infinite variety of pizzas and flatbreads.

Flatbreads are similar to pizzas except they often combine ingredients you wouldn’t customarily expect on a pizza, or omit traditional ingredients like tomato sauce and cheese. If you want to experiment we’ve included a flatbread recipe as well.

The focus of this article is more about the art of topping. We’ll cover the basics and the recipe for making your pizza/flatbread dough, and then we’ll go over some of the classic and some more contemporary recipes you can try. I’ll often make a large double batch of pizza dough and reserve some in the refrigerator wrapped in plastic wrap. It’s great to pull some dough out of the fridge and with the addition of a few toppings and 20 to 25 minutes in the oven enjoy a perfectly made pizza or flat bread.


Pizza and Flatbread Dough Basics

There’s no secret to making pizza dough. It’s a relatively simple and goof-proof recipe. Just make sure you measure the proportions precisely. You can use either bread flour or all-purpose flour in this recipe. However, if you use all-purpose flour omit the salt to give the yeast a chance to compensate for the reduced gluten in the all-purpose flour.


Pizza Dough Recipe:

PREP -Pizza 1 - dough out of the machine PREP - Pizza 4 - rolled dough

(Makes 4 thin crusts about 14 to 16 inches in diameter)


  • 1 2/3 cups water (80° F./ 27° C.)
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons dry milk
  • 4 1/2 cups bread flour
  • 2 teaspoons active dry yeast


Add the ingredients to the bread pan in the order listed in the recipe and select the “Pizza Dough” cycle. If your machine does not have a “Pizza Dough” cycle you can select the standard “Dough cycle” and that should work fine. The pizza dough cycle kneads the bread a little longer to increase the elasticity but it comes out pretty close with the standard dough cycle as well.

Once the dough is finished, dump it from the machine onto either a floured or lightly oiled surface. I prefer a floured surface but use only a minimal amount of flour. For this particular recipe you can cut the large dough ball into 4 small dough balls and roll them out into a pizza shape. You can also stretch the dough a bit with your hands. Don’t worry if you get an irregular shape instead of the perfect pizza round. Everything homemade is a little uneven and rough around the edges. You can pinch the sides up on the edges if you like, but I just leave them flat.

PREP - pizza 2 - 4 dough balls

After you’ve rolled out your dough, place the rolled dough onto either a lightly oiled cookie sheet, or you can dust a cookie sheet or pizza paddle with coarse corn meal. This will help prevent the dough from sticking to the pan or the pizza paddle. If you have a pizza stone, place it in the over before you preheat the oven and finish your pizza on the pizza paddle. Don’t put oil on a pizza stone. Corn meal is usually the only thing you want to dust a pizza stone with when you’re baking. Because the pizza stone is usually placed in the oven while the oven is preheating you’ll want to use the pizza paddle to carefully slide the pizza onto the stone. If you’re using a baking sheet you can top the dough with toppings while the pizza dough is on the baking sheet.

Once your pizza dough is in place on the sheet or the paddle you’re ready to top. What follows is a series of recipes the will give you an idea of the wonderful things you can do including some surprising variations.


Pizza Sauce

You can buy pizza sauce in a jar or a can, or simply use a prepared spaghetti sauce. If you want to make your own pizza sauce, simply combine a can of tomatoes in a food processor with 2 cloves of garlic, a tablespoon of Italian seasoning, a teaspoon of sugar and a pinch of salt and pepper. Process until smooth and use as the foundation topping for your pizzas.


The Classic Pizza Margherita

The tradition says that when the Italian Queen Margherita came to Venice for a visit, an enterprising local chef decided to make a flat bread for her to honor Italy. He decided to replicate the colors of the Italian flag in red, white and green. The result was a flatbread covered in tomato sauce and topped with sliced mozzarella cheese and green, flat leaf basil. The concept of the contemporary pizza was born which we now think of as a classic recipe.


Pizza Margherita Recipe:

PREP - pizza 3 - spreading the sauce PREP - Pizza 5 - topping the pizzas


  • 1 rolled out pizza crust
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • 2 fresh plum tomatoes sliced thin
  • 1/2 cup whole leaf basil
  • 1/2 pound mozzarella sliced thin


Spread the sauce thinly and evenly over the dough. Top with the basil. You want the basil on the bottom so the heat of the oven doesn’t cook it to a crisp. Top with the slices of mozzarella and the tomato slices and bake in a 425° F. oven for 15 to 25 minutes. The time varies widely because of the size of your pizza and the heat of your oven. Put it on the bottom rack in the oven. This will give you a very crisp crust and protect the delicate, broad-leaf basil. Check it a lot to see how it’s doing. Move it to other racks higher or lower if you think. The key thing to check is the amount of browning on the crust (use a spatula to lift it and see), and the melt on the cheese. It’s nice if you can get a little browning, cut don’t burn the basil.

UNBAKED - pizza 6 - Pizza Margherita ready for the ovenBAKED - Pizza 10 - Pizza Margherita


Classic American Style Mushroom and Sausage Pizza

It’s curious but true. The number one style of pizza ordered in the U.S. is a pizza topped with mushrooms, sausage and mozzarella cheese. It’s an intensely flavorful pizza that delivers a significant amount of savory flavor. This pizza also tends to be the one recipe where double cheese is often recommended. That’s up to you.


Mushroom and Sausage Pizza Recipe:

PREP - Sausage and mushroom pizza 2 PREP - Mushroom and Sausage pizza 3


  • 1 rolled out pizza dough
  • Tomato sauce or pizza sauce
  • 1 cup of Italian sausage (lightly browned in a skillet)
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 1 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese (2 cups if you want to double the cheese)
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano


Preheat the oven to 425° F. Top the crust with the ingredients in the order indicated in the recipe. It helps to sear the Italian sausage in a skillet for a bit to give it a head start on cooking. It also helps to remove some of the fat. Bake at 425° F for 20 to 25 minutes or until the crust starts to brown. Slice and serve.

PREP - Sausage and Mushroom Pizza 1 mushroom and sausage pizza with double cheese ready for the oven


The Umami Madness Pizza

Umami is a savory taste that is unique to certain foods. These are foods that are high in natural glutamates and are very satisfying. What’s interesting is that many of the foods that are traditionally used as pizza toppings are the same foods that are the highest in glutamates. This may explain the continuing popularity of pizza. I put together a recipe one day that tried to combine as many umami ingredients as possible. The list is long and this pizza is a monster. You can omit some of the ingredients if you don’t like them or simply feel overwhelmed. It also features anchovies which just happen to be at the top of the list of umami flavor. If you don’t like anchovies you can skip them, but this may be the time to try them again.


Umami Madness Pizza Recipe:

BAKED - Steve Nubie's Umami Madness Pizza(1)


  • 1 -16 inch crust
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 – 29 oz Can Plum tomatoes drained, sliced and roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup sliced Shitake Mushrooms
  • 1 cup slice Baby Portabella Mushrooms
  • 12 fresh basil leaves torn
  • 1/2 cup baby spinach leaves
  • 3 cloves of garlic thinly sliced
  • 1 cup Italian Sausage (crisply browned)
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
  • 1/2 cup sliced Black olives
  • 1/2 cup sliced Kalamata olives
  • 12 Anchovies (optional if everyone hates anchovies but “so loaded” with umami)
  •  6 rashers of crisp bacon crumbled
  • 1/4 cup of Romano
  • 4 oz. Roquefort coarsely crumbled
  • 1 tbsp fresh oregano chopped
  • 1 cup shredded Mozzarella
  • 6 asparagus spears sliced to 1 inch (blanched and shocked in ice-water)
  • 1/2 tsp Sea Salt


Preheat the oven to 375° F. Drizzle the olive oil over the crust and spread it around with your fingers. Top this with the crushed plum tomatoes. Now you need to slowly sprinkle all of the ingredients on the list in the order they are indicated. You’re building layers and want certain things exposed to direct heat, and others protected by ingredients above.

Bake in the oven for 20 minutes and check the cheese. Look at the center as well. The mozzarella is your canary in this coal mine. When it starts to get a nice browning around the edges that moves towards the center you’re done. Slice and serve.

BAKED - Umami pizza 3


Vegetarian Pizza

The great thing about pizza is that you can top it with just about anything. Here’s a simple recipe for a vegetarian pizza but you can add any variety or type of vegetables that you like.


Vegetarian Pizza Recipe:

PREP - Vegetarian Pizza 1 BAKED - Vegetarian pizza 2


  • 1 16-inch pizza crust
  • Tomato sauce
  • 2 cups mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup basil leaves
  • 4 thinly sliced fresh tomatoes
  • 2 thinly sliced onions


Preheat oven to 425° F. Spread the sauce over the crust and top in the order indicated in the recipe. Bake at 425° F. for 20 to 25 minutes. Slice and serve.

BAKED - Vegetarian pizza



Pissaladière is traditional French flatbread that is actually an onion tart. It’s commonly served as an appetizer with wine or beer and is easy to make. When you sauté the onions they sweeten and the baking process sweetens them further. It’s customarily topped with olives and anchovies but you can omit the anchovies if you don’t like them. You can also use a variety of olives as a topping but black olives or Kalamata olives seem to show up the most.


Pissaladière Recipe:

pissaladiere 2 pissaladeire 1

  • 1 16-inch pizza crust
  • 6 yellow onions sliced
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Black or Kalamata Olives
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • Anchovy fillets (optional)
  • 2 garlic cloves minced

pissaladiere baked pissaladiere baked 4


Preheat the oven to 450° F.

Sauté the onions in the butter until soft and translucent. Roll out the pizza dough. Spread the olive oil across the top. Spoon the onions on the dough and spread evenly. Top the onions with the thyme and dot with the olives. Use as many olives as you like. Place the anchovies on top if you like anchovies and distribute evenly. How many anchovies you use is up to you. Sprinkle the minced garlic across the top. Bake in the oven at 450° for 15 minutes or until crust is browned. Slice into squares and serve.

pissalediere 6


Vegan Pizza

Making a Vegan style pizza requires a slight change to the pizza dough recipe and the omission of cheese from the toppings. After that, you can use a variety of vegetables to top your pizza. We’re featuring some traditional Italian ingredients in this recipe, but you can substitute your favorite vegetables or nuts like pistachios or almonds as much as you like.


Vegan Pizza Dough Recipe:

(Makes 4 thin crusts about 14 to 16 inches in diameter)


  • 1 2/3 cups water (80° F./ 27° C.)
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 4 1/2 cups bread flour
  • 2 teaspoons active dry yeast


Add the ingredients to the bread pan in the order indicated. The only thing omitted from the traditional pizza dough is the addition of dry milk. Set on the pizza cycle and when done, remove and cut into 2 or 4 chunks and roll out the dough.


Vegan Pizza Recipe:


  • 1 Vegan 16-inch vegan pizza crust
  • Tomato sauce
  • 1 cup of sliced tomatoes
  • 1 medium onion sliced
  • 1 cup mushrooms sliced
  • 1 cup of green pepper diced
  • 1/4 fresh basil leaves or 1/2 cup baby spinach leaves (you can use both)
  • Sprinkle of sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon of oregano


Preheat oven to 425° F. Top the pizza crust with the ingredients in the order indicated finishing with a sprinkle of the oregano over the top. Bake at 425° F. for 20 to 25 minutes or until edges of crust start to brown. Slice and serve


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