I’ve gone through a lot of trial and error to get this just right. It amazes me how quickly you can screw up the most important thing on the pizza, which is the dough. Hopefully this guide will help you to accomplish great homemade pizza with your Big Green Egg (BGE), Kamado, or any other type of grill/smoker that can reach 550° or higher.
Plate Setter (ConvEggtor)
Pizza Dough (recipe below)
Pizzza Sauce (recipe below)
Your Favorite Toppings
- After you’ve made the pizza dough, start the Big Green Egg by filling the fire box with hardwood charcoal. You can experiment with smoking the pizza using 1-2 chunks for a little extra Hickory or Maple flavor.
- Once the fire is lit, put the plate setter on the grill with the feet side up.
- Place the grill grate on top the plate setter and then place the pizza stone on top of the grill grate. (This is how the makers at BGE recommend you cook your pizza since you don’t want direct ceramic on ceramic contact, or one of the pieces will break. Some people use a short divider, or old BGE feet between the ceramics, but I say why risk it. Plus you want the stone above the base of the egg to make it easy to slide the pizza on or off.)
- Bring the grill up to 550° and then let it maintain that temp for at least 30 minutes so that the pizza stone can heat up. (if you put the pizza on before the stone heats, you won’t get a brown crusty bottom. The result is a burnt top with doughy crust.)
- Grab your pizza peel and dust it with corn meal.
- Hand toss, or roll out the dough ball on a floured surface and then transfer it to the pizza peel. Do not roll out the dough on the corn meal or the meal will embed into the dough and the dough will stick to the peel, making a mess when you try to transfer it to the grill.
- Lightly sauce the dough and then cover it with the toppings you desire. (The sauce recipe below is enough for 5 10″ pizzas.)
- Once the grill is ready, lightly dust the stone with corn meal and then transfer the pizza to stone by giving the peel a slight jerk to get it started.
- Cook the pizza for 4-6 minutes. It’s okay to open and close the lid on such a fast cook, but I generally look down the top vent to see how things are coming. There is a small window where you can overcook the bottom of the crust, so start checking it around the 4 minute mark.
- Between pizzas, make sure to add more corn meal to the pizza peel. Also, make sure to wipe the burnt corn meal off the pizza stone and re-dust it before cooking additional pizzas.
- Experiment with the crust. You can brush on heavy cream, butter, or Olive Oil to help brown the edges. You can also lightly dust it with herbs or parmesan after the cream has been added.
Pizza Sauce Directions
- In a medium sauce pan over medium heat, heat the olive oil and then add the onions and garlic. Cook the onion until translucent.
- Mix the remaining ingredients and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Place the sauce in an airtight container and stick it in the fridge overnight to allow the flavors to meld.
1 Can Italian Style Diced Tomatoes (I crush them in the pan to make them smaller.)
1 Small Can of Tomato Paste
1 Teaspoon Italian Seasoning
1-2 Garlic Cloves (Add more if you are a garlic lover.)
1 Small Organic Onion, diced
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
1 Tablespoon of Sugar
Approximately 20 Leaves of Fresh Oregano
Two Fresh Basil leaves chopped
Salt and Pepper
Pizza Dough Directions
- Mix 1/4 cup of the water with the Active Dry Yeast and sugar. Let it rest for 5 minutes.
- In a large bowl, add all the dry ingredients and stir.
- Add the water and yeast mixture to the bowl and mix with a spoon.
- Stir until the dough turns into a sticky ball. Do not add more flour.
- Lubricate your hands with Olive Oil and then kneed the dough to form a perfectly smooth ball.
- Place the dough ball into a clean bowl that has been lined with Olive Oil.
- Cover with a towel and place in a warm place for 1 hour, or until the ball has doubled in size.
- Kneed the dough ball again and then cut into the sizes you want. One complete recipe will make two 20″ pizzas, or four 10″ pizzas.
- Place the smaller dough balls on a floured surface and let them rest for another 15 minutes.
4 1/4 Cups of Caputo Flour (You can substitute Unbleached Bread Flour)
1 Teaspoon of Malt Flour (Add this if using Unbleached Bread Flour)
1 Cup of Whole Wheat Flour (Looking for traditional crust? Just change this to bread flour.)
1 3/4 Teaspoons of Active Dry Yeast
2 Teaspoons of Kosher Salt
2 1/4 Cups of 110 water
1-2 Tablespoons of Olive Oil
1 Teaspoon of Sugar
Troubleshooting Tips for the Pizza Dough
- Don’t Over Proof. The biggest mistake you can make is letting it rise too long. If you notice that the dough has dried out on top, or worse, throw it in the trash and start over.
- Don’t Substitute Bread Flour for All Purpose. Caputo Flour is the best flour for pizza. If you can’t find it in the store, you can use unbleached bread flour, but it won’t be quite the same.
- Brown on the bottom, but white on top. The pizza stone is too hot. 550° is ideal.
- Burnt toppings, but crust is still doughy. The pizza stone is not hot enough, so the circulation of the heat in the BGE is cooking the top before the bottom has a chance to cook. You’ll easily figure this one out when you are pulling the pizza after 10 minutes instead of within the 4-6 range.