Thursday, July 23, 2009

Wolfgang Puck's Famous California Pizza Dough

One product of my recent online interview with Wolfgang Puck was being given his pizza dough recipe to publish on my American Food site on About.com. I don't think this recipe is any kind of secret, and I'm sure it's been published many times, but I had never personally tried it, so I decided to do this recipe video and check out this iconic dough for myself.

As I read the recipe, I noticed the times were very short for the rising and proofing. I was a little suspicious, but hey, he's Wolfgang Puck and I'm not. I believe the honey in the dough, which feeds the yeast (sugar is to yeast, as anonymity is to bravery online), as well as the very warm water both contributed to the yeasts very rapid growth.

In just 35 minutes the dough had doubled beautifully -- it was soft, supple, and very subtly scented with honey. As you'll see in the video, this is a very quick and ea
sy pizza dough recipe, and I was very happy with the results. I think this Wolfgang Puck guy may have a future.

Even though I already have a couple pizza dough recipes that I love and use (both posted online), you never want to get to a point in your cooking where you think you've found the "best" recipe for something, and not try other variations. This is the fatal flaw of many cooks and chefs.

Thanks to Wolfgang Puck for his recipe, and I hope you all give this a try. Enjoy!



Ingredients:
1 package dry active yeast
1 teaspoon honey
1 cup warm water (105 degrees F)
3 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
toppings of your choice

117 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi Chef John,

It happens that my yeast does not comes in small packages, so would 1 package be equivalent to around, lets say, 2 tbsp?

Flour said...

I've tried your no knead pizza dough recipe, and it was awesome! I made pizza just yesterday trying Reinhart's dough recipe, and it was awesome! So, I certainly must try Puck's recipe as it looks so yummy.
I try so many new recipes whilst searching for the best one, so I suppose I'm guilty Chef John:)

Chef John said...

I'm sure it;s online somewhere, but I believe it's 2 1/4 Teaspoons (not tablespoons)

Pyrofish said...

No stone in your oven? For shame!
Big box hardware store, unglazed tile, $2.50 each. Wash 'em. Put 'em in the oven, and leave them there. They're not hurting anything. Pizza stone, done.

ghanima said...

Hi Chef John! I was wondering if you think agave nectar would work just as well as the honey in this. I don't have any honey in my pantry, but lots of agave...

Jesse said...

Looking forward to adding this to my rep!

Asian Malaysian said...

Chef John, that "Hasta Lavista, Baby" at the end really took me by surprise. Is it going to be part of your signature sign off from now on?

Anonymous said...

Man, CJ (aka CeeJay), you really are the King Of Online Cooks:

"Even though I already have a couple pizza dough recipes that I love and use (both posted online), you never want to get to a point in your cooking where you think you've found the "best" recipe for something, and not try other variations. This is the fatal flaw of many cooks and chefs."

This is so, so true, and so friggin humble and honest and true that it, really, almost moves me to tears, especially at this time of the night.

Keep on doing what you're doing, you're being followed in amazement every single day of my life.

LC

Chef John said...

Wow, thanks for glowing praise! I've always thought my humbleness is one of the things that makes me so awesome. ;-)

maitino said...

Humility. You actually reply people on youtube anyways, despite highlighting that they should go to foodwishes to ask questions. You are such a good man.

Chris K. said...

You should totally get a baking stone, brah.

Sheldon said...

Here is a suggestion; you should try baking a pizza in a bbq... I am curious if you get the same result as using an oven...
just a though :)
I will try this recipe tomorrow though
thanks

anasarca said...

Hi Chef John,

I love your videos! They are easy to follow and who can resist your sarcastic sense of humor. :)

My first attempt at this recipe and it came out great. My finished product didn't rise as much as the pie in your video, but I'm trying again tonight and we'll see how it goes.

I've been meaning to ask --

1) Instead of 4 small pizza's can you do one large with this recipe? Would the cooking time change?

2) Do you have a method for getting the pizza in/out of the oven? I don't have a peel but do have a stone. It was a little touch and go there as I tried to get the flimsy pizza on to the piping hot stone. I've read about prebaking the crust for several minutes before adding the topping.

I'll let you know how it works!

Chef John said...

Thanks! you can do a big one, it takes just a little longer. Try turning over a sheet pan, use cormeal, and put the dough on that and use it to slide it on to the stone.

jonknee said...

This was pretty similar to my standard recipe, but you got me in the mood for pizza so I tried it out. Couldn't taste the honey in the finished product, but it was quite good. I like cooking pizza on an overturned rocket hot cast iron pan, sort of a poor-man's pizza stone. Works really well, you get an authentic charred bottom crust.

Anonymous said...

can you make bread sticks out of the pizza dough?

Chef John said...

sure, why not? roll into logs and bake until browned.

Jana said...

I did it right now, I never in my life ate the whole pizza (being all the time on diets!!!). But this pizza was irresistible. What a great recipe!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thanks a lot!!!!

Shino Khan said...

hi John,

Just to let you that this pizza dough is perfect. It was our first time, Pizza was simply perfect. We used to make pizza's but pizza bread never came out this good.

Thanks again for sharing this recepie.

Saad & Salma.

Anonymous said...

Chef Jon, In the Wolfgang Puck's Pizza dough recipe, how much will the 1 package dry active yeast measure up to, in teaspoonfuls?. I only get them in very large packets. Thanks in advance. NvN

Chef John said...

I'm not home and don't remember exactly... Google it

cooker said...

Hi Chef. Tried this one today. Had just 1.5 cups of flour at home and was too lazy to get some (from across the road) so I made up with 1.5 c of oat flour. Came out crisper than usual but pretty good nevertheless. Besides oat is healthy ( will scrub out that cheese from the system , considering that I refused to walk across the road..... :-)
Also used a foil lined tray to bake the pizza ( dont know if thats a crime in pizza land but it worked for me...do get back to me on that), sprinkled with semolina (we call it "rava" ) since corn meal is not easily available in India. Works well .....and also serves to answer an earlier Q from a reader, asking what is a good substitute for sprinkled cornmeal.
On the whole , a successful event....but when the teacher is of your calibre, it would be very hard to get it wrong !!!
Thanks for your recipe. You are simply amazing....now where have I said that before ? :-)

Chef John said...

thanks!

Pizza said...

That is a good pizza recipe. I need to try it some time.

Blog Pizza

Dina said...

I know you said that you could refrigerate dough for a couple of days. Can you freeze the unused portions? Wrap in plastic wrap first? Same question for your no-knead recipe, too.

Thanks!

Constantin said...

Hi John.

I tried to do this pizza yesterday.
I have problems when making dough :(

My dough doesn't rise. I even let it 2 hours at worm place.

Could be that because of yeast ?
I used Dr. Oetker (on pack it's written NOT To Disolve).

I tried 2 times, the same result, no growing. In rest ingredients are the same you use.

What kind of yeast I must use ?

Thanks.

Chef John said...

its the yeast. get some Fleishmans dry active yeast packets, they are in every store.

Minh "Sa" Chau said...

Can you use the 1/4 of total pizza dough for the size of a pizza like a pizzaria's whole pizza pie, or do you use half?

Chef John said...

1/4 of the dough will only make about a 8-10 inch pizza

Anonymous said...

Hi! I just attempted making this pizza but im not sure what sauce to use for the pizza. My sister said i should just use tomato sauce Can you help?

Chef John said...

Yes, tomato sauce is my fav!

James said...

This works nicely - But I always get about half of the amount of dough that you get in this video. The yeast, I'm guessing?

juardine said...

Hi Chef John,

L.J. here wanting to say how much I enjoy your videos. Today I tried the Puck's pizza dough recipe and loved it. Although the recipe calls for 3 cups of flour, I only used two cups. The first attempt with using the 3 cups caused my dough to be very dry, dense, and unexpandable. I wonder why? When I used the 2 cups the crust came out wonderfully crispy and tender. I can't wait to experiment with different toppings. My next recipe to try is your boston cream pie. :)

Connie said...

Omgoodness! Your pizza looks sooo delicious Chef John. May I request a foodwish? Stromboli. I would love to see your take on it. :) Hope ya give it a try.

Sam said...

I've tried your no knead pizza dough recipe, and it was great....n pizza i made was so yummy thanks to youe all the videos... really a nice blog....
keep it up Chef!

Anonymous said...

Love your blog! Tried Wolfgang's pizza dough today and it was excellent! This recipe made one x-large pizza for me. I've tried several recipes but I've decided this is my favorite so far. I look forward to trying the others listed on your site. I absolutely love your method of cooking the pizza on the bottom of the oven -genius! It made the most wonderful crispy/chewy crust that I had not been able to achieve in the past. I'll use this method from now on. Thank you! --Melissa

Ruth-Anne said...

Hi Chef John,

I am a beginner cook and I love your youtube videos, especially all of your commentary on exactly how to do everything. I made this pizza recipe and it was awesome! Thank you for giving me more confidence in the kitchen and for making recipes that are clearly explained and not intimidating while still being top notch quality food :) I also made the califlower soup with the blue cheese fritters and this was also excellent!

Thanks so much!

Anonymous said...

I just tried this tonight but made a big square pizza instead and it was amazing! Thanks for all the amazing easy to follow recipes! You are the man!

Skanee girl said...

Tthis is the best pizza crust I ever made....sooooooo good!

Alain M said...

I want to make this tonight, your recipes are always wonderful! This would be my first try at pizza crust, but I wonder, do I need the cornmeal when cooking it? I don't have any. Any other options?

Chef John said...

It really helps! No real sub, sorry.

Anonymous said...

We've made this several times and tonight tried the recipe with our new kitchenaid mixer-- no kneading and no mess, equally great flavor and texture.

Anonymous said...

Hi again (Chris from Poland),

The dough is really great. In about a hour is ready and really grows in the eyes.

I prefer super thin pizzas, so for me it is amount for two quite large ones. In 13 minutes at 480F its ready in the middle, but littlebit too baked at the edges (about 0.6 inch). Is it a problem of time or the temperature? (it's really crusty like a cracker)

BigDaddy said...

Ok so when I was young worked at a pizza place. Know how to toss the dough etc....

Only thing I didn't have was a good recipe. DUDE! This is AWESOME!

Also tried it with apple juice instead of honey! Very good as well.

Thank you thank you.. .and I really enjoy your commentary!

Jeoupei Rossel said...

I kind of used 2 tbsp yeast without knowing exact how much it should be for 1 package = 2 1/4 tsp. However, it turned out very good. I recommend this recipe to anyone who loves making pizza. It's easy and delicious. My ten-year-old made it with me.

Reecia said...

Hi John and everyone,

We're about to try the pizza dough! We are feeding 6 people though - should we just double the recipe or make two batches?

Thanks!

Chef John said...

yes, i would!

tom said...

Hey Chef I just made my first ever dough and it came out great! Still can't taste the difference between Trader Joe's pizza dough, and home made but it was a good learning experience.

Check out my results!

Anonymous said...

Great recipe. Thank you for sharing!

ET Photography said...

can this be put in freezer? if so for how long...thanks

Chef John said...

Yes you can, but not sure how long.

Anonymous said...

chef what can i use to substitute cornmeal..because at my place it's hard to find those

Anonymous said...

chef i made the pizza without using cornmeal, but nevertheless the pizza taste delicious!My family like it very much!thanks for the recipe :D

Jose said...

This pizza man...GREAT! Just made it for my family, they were eating them like crazy.

Anonymous said...

I've made this recipe about 5 times now (always a double recipe), and I LOVE IT SO MUCH! I wanted to suggest others to try this recipe with the leftover dough: http://savoryseasonings.blogspot.com/2009/04/godfathers-streusel-dessert-pizza.html
The dough is PERFECT for the dessert pizza!
Thank you Chef John!

Anonymous said...

Thank you very much for the recipe! I have made it 3 times already and they came out perfect and tasty each time!

Anonymous said...

I alway bake my pizza on a cookie tray lined with parchment paper. You won't need the cornmeal and the pizza slides right off when done. Gonna try this recipe for dough next time I make pizza, sounds good.

salfaour said...

Hi Chef John,

I just made the Pizza, and let me tell you it was AMAZING, i di not have honey though so i used sugar but still it tuned out beautiful, its the firt time i make pizza, my wife and all my family were shocked lool, thank you soooooo much all your food is great.

Matt Dc said...

U say just use Tomato sauce? Meaning your fav brand out of can, or home made sauce? The sauce is key no? I'll look to see if u have a post for pizza sauce.

Matt DC said...

I'm not going to lie. I was a lil worried about the dough by the time i got all 3 cups of flower together. but honestly, this came out pretty damn good. The sauce came out awesome used the san marzons minus the seeds and herbs and oregano.......very nice!

Anonymous said...

Well, I have to say this is my first time making pizza! It turned out well. I tried making the thick crust first with toppings of tomato sauce and cheddar cheese. Turn out quite good but abit tasteless so on that day I made the crust thinner and more sauce with cheddar cheese and some ham. Woahh!!! I'm amazed! Thank you Chef John!!! :)

-hl

Max V said...

Hi John!

First of all I would like to thank you for your awesome recipes, I have tried so many of them and they have all been great successes for our family.

One of my favorite recipes is the Wolfgang Puck's pizza dough, but I have a slight problem when preparing it myself. I always end up using only about 2 - 2½ cups of flour on it, and when I set the dough aside to rest, the surface starts to break. What am I doing wrong here ?

Chef John said...

Sorry I don't understand.

Anonymous said...

I mean, when I set the dough aside to rest for 30-40minutes, then I turn it on my floured cutting board and start to pat it down, it isn't moist and slightly sticky any longer, but the surface has actually began to crack, like its sort of dry all of a sudden.

Anonymous said...

Stephen from Tacoma WA USA here.

Thank's a heap for the video and the written instruction at;
http://americanfood.about.com/od/pizzaandbreads/r/Wolfgang_Puck_Pizza.htm

This was my first time at making dough, and I realize that I was lucky to find your information and Chef Pucks recipe. I imagine lots of people have had hard times with other recipes. This was a total success for me. I used Paul Newman's Sockarooni Spaghetti sauce and 1-1/2 link of Hillshire Farms Hot-Links sliced up and some pepperjack cheese sliced crumbled up. So lots of sauce choices and links and brackwurst etc to choose from.

Affordable round meals are very welcome in these economic times.

I too had a little problem with the second warming, 30 minutes in a turned off heated oven. I used a wet towel laid directly over the four balls as seen in the video and the towels stuck to the balls so I had to peel the dough away and lost some. No big deal but I am doing something wrong. (I did use the full three cups of flour.)

Any suggestions?
And would t TBS of honey throw off the recipe?

Again, thank you so very much Chef John.

Stephen

Chef John said...

The towel has to be dry! I never said wet towel in the video. That's the problem. Not sure about the honey, but should be fine.

Anonymous said...

Thanks John. Silly on my part as you can see the towel is dry in the video.

I just froze another pizza. I will likely make a dozen or more next month, as varied as possible with individual notes.
Stephen

Chef John said...

enjoy!

Anonymous said...

Dear Chef John,

I was hoping to use this recipe for the dough for calzones. Would you have any suggestions on how long to bake them to make sure they're done the whole way through?
Thank you in advance.

Chef John said...

sorry, never made!

Anonymous said...

chef john, i made it today and its perfect! do you think i can use wheat flour? thank you so much for sharing!!

dani said...

Oh my goodness this is an excellent dough! Just looking at them when they came out of the oven made me smile. Tastes amazing, thanks Chef John!

Brashworks said...

Chef John - thank you so much for sharing this wonderful recipe and finally teaching me how to make pizza that doesn't have a "cracker" crust. Made some tonight (with red pepper flakes too, yum!) and they turned out beautifully.

I love, love, love your site. I'm 45 years old and finally took an interest in cooking when I had my daughter 3 years ago (yeah, old bag Mom). Seriously, the best thing I ever made for dinner was reservations. I came upon your site looking for a pizza dough recipe and haven't looked back.

Tonight I made your pate brisee crust which I hope to turn into butter tarts tomorrow (it's a Canuck thing).

Your videos are a joy and a laugh to watch - can't thank you enough for your inspiration.

Anonymous said...

just made the pizza,
this is the best pizza dough i ever made!
its just awsome!

Anonymous said...

how much would one package of yeast equal in tsp? Btw I'm gonna use this recipe tonight for my mom!

Anonymous said...

1 package = 2 1/4 tsp.

Anonymous said...

Nice video.

But where can I copy/paste and print the recipe so I can have it in front of me in the kitchen?

1Bigg_ER said...

I had issues with the dough, after 3 cups of flour it was still very sticky, added some more flour and still sticky.
Pizza still came out fantastic. I used my lodge cast iron round griddle.

Nathalie said...

Hi Chef John. I know the recipe calls for active dry yeast but I only have Fleischmann's instant dry yeast. Will the measurement change at all? If so, how much of this should I use? Thanks!

Chef John said...

just use the same I think.

Kahley said...

Hi Chef John! If I was going to make this in advance, would you recommend freezing the dough before or after baking it?

Chef John said...

I'd do before. Enjoy!

Lim.Teh.Here said...

Dear Chef John,

i tried this recipe last night! The pizza dough came out beautifully. Thanks to your video, your effortless attempt at it was what motivated me to give it a try. I suck at kneading dough!

Chef John said...

great!! thanks!!

SEF said...

LOVE LOVE LOVED this recipe! I have checked out your site many times but this is the first time I have used a recipe, I'll be back! Thanks for the wonderful site and easy to follow videos!

Nancy Sokoloski said...

Waaa, I can't get my dough to puff up like this. Que pasa with moi? Thanks CJ

Carman Cheung said...

found your website by random while searching for pizza dough recipes. This turned out GREAT and it's my first time attempting to bake with yeast ever! I also used your pizza sauce recipes AND granola... everything was excellent. THANK YOU! will definitely be trying more other ones!

-- said...

Hey Chef John,

I noticed at the end that you said this recipe works great if you like a thinner pizza. I happen to enjoy these. I was wondering if there is any adjustment to cooking time to be made if I make it thin crust?

Chef John said...

thinner cooks faster, so check earlier!

Canard Errant said...

Salutations! I love your recipes, especially your pizzas. I've made them before but if I don't want to eat or prepare the dough the day of, what can I do? What I mean is, can I prepare the dough beforehand (leave it in the oven for more than 20min)? Or freeze it?

Chef John said...

You can make dough day before or freeze!

Karina said...

Hello,
can you put two small pizzas on the pan, do you need to cook them longer if two are on the pan.

If I use a baking stone do I preheat it and if so for how long and how long would i cook my pizza with the stone?

CFTM001 said...

Hey Chef John!

I've been making this dough about once a week. It's awesome. I tried the no-knead one, but I like this a lot better.

One quick question. If I wanted to make whole wheat dough, can I simply substitute whole wheat flour for regular flour? Or do I have to do something else?

Thanks!!

Abbott_Lane said...

Recipe worked well... Beautiful pizza crust. thanks!

Jessica Vo said...

I made this pizza dough last night and baked it today. It was so freakin' good. Thank you so much for sharing!

Sadaf said...

Hello Chef John,

This is the first time i ever made pizza dough and loved the way it turned out. However the crust was too crunchy for me. If i want a very SOFT pizza what should i do???

Sadaf said...

Hi chef John,

I made this first time today. Everything worked out fine except that the crust was too crispy for me. If i want a very soft pizza how should i bake it???

rain.drop said...

Dear Chef John, I've made this pizza already twice and this is my best pizza dough ever. Thank you for posting this recipe!

Dempsoir said...

I've used this recipe twice now, although the first time I hardly got any rise from the dough at all. Then I remembered that being from the UK, the protein content of our flour is much lower than that in the US, so the second time I made this I used Strong Bread flour instead. I got much better results, I really do like the crust you get from it.

elniñoyuntero said...

I can not forgive you all this saliva swallowing..Fantastic Pizza !!! Thank you so much from Finland !!

Hernando


elniñoyuntero said...

Sorry Chef, it is me again. I am really mad about Thick Crust Pizza. What should I do to get a thick crust out of your recipe ?

Ponderous Troll said...

Hi Chef John

Just wanted to say that I love your recipes and I just tried this one and am waiting to see the results when I put the dough to the oven. But I have a question - if i were to use instant yeast instead of dry active yeast, what are the steps that would be changed / impacted? Would I skip the first hydration step?

Chef John said...

Never use it, but that's what I hear.

Karen Cortner said...

I made this for dinner tonight. What a difference a great dough makes. My proof, and resting times were a bit long as I got busy with chores. Fabulous flavor nonetheless. I made mine with thai peanut sauce, cooked chicken, shrimp and a few veggies. Hubby's with a bit of fresh basil, and cheese only. Both pizzas were the best!

Mark said...

Let me get this straight. Damp towel for the first rise then dry towel for the second rise?

Thanks for your recipes.

Chef John said...

Yes!

Shilag said...

Absolutely amazing recipe and technique! I haven't actually made homemade pizza before, ever, and this turned out absolutely amazing.

Used your pizza sauce recipe as well, although I modified it a bit as I'm not fond of anchovies, and didn't have any fresh oregano at home. So instead I used some fresh basil and dried oregano, also added some onions and it was delicious.

For the pizza itself, I put on some local cheese, parmigiano, half-circles of red onions, blobs of pesto and fried white button mushrooms (canned, unfortunately). Then I baked it at the bottom of the oven, took it out and added an egg in the center, along with a bit more cheese.
After about 5 minutes I took it out and added a lot of lettuce and some spicy paprika sauce I'd thrown together and let it heat up while the oven was off for a few minutes.
It turned out absolutely delicious, probably one of the best pizzas I've had in my life, maybe bar.. one.

Thank you so much for your videos, Chef John!

http://i.imgur.com/gqdDOKa.jpg?1

Megan Lehman said...

the first time I find you was when I was looking up anything that had to do with Dinner Rolls I had never made them by myself, my gma was the one that showed me how to cook and she'd make it and i'd help, so I was thinking I wanted to do it for myself for the first time will I looked and looked and looked and then I find Rosemary Pull-Apart Dinner Rolls Recipe by Chef John and I had seen your video and I just loved it and how you talked and how you said some funny stuff in it, I did make the Rosemary Pull-Apart Dinner Rolls, about 2 to 3 times they where not that bad, the Rosemary was a lil much for me but I did like them, then i looked on food wishes to see what there was and i seen you had a lot of pizza recipes and i looked at a lot of them and stopped looking when i get to Wolfgang Puck's Pizza Dough recipe i tried it and loved it, i have made it maybe 10 or more times in some months, even my gma liked it a lot, using that some recipe i have been making it in to a P'ZONE and it is really good also, the next thing i am going to try is Buttermilk Fried Chicken i am excited to try this as will, ty for all the really good looking and just over all good recipes, can't wait to see more and try them out XD

ty and keep up the good work and take care.

Aulia Alyda said...

Chef, i put my leftover dough in refrigerator and it come out not as elastic as the first dough. Whats wrong with my dough? Thanks.

Chef John said...

not sure, was dough still cold?

Rémi Benoit said...

Just for posterity (and future pizza ^^) :

1 package dry active yeast
1 teaspoon honey
236 ml warm water (105 degrees F)
375 gr cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
toppings of your choice

Vashudev Maharaj said...

Hi Chef,

I tried this dough a couple of times and it turned out great for the most part. The inner crust which is covered in the sauce is nice and chewy but the outer crust is very hard. I'm making a thin to medium thickness dough with the finger technique shown. Any suggestions as to how to make the outer crust less hard. I'm using the olive oil on the dough and it stays in the over for a total 15mins as suggested, thanks.

Chef John said...

I don't know, maybe dont do any olive oil on the edges.

Cash Sexauer said...

I really liked that recipe. I give the recipe 5 stars!

Matt Hughes said...

There's an extra 3/4 cup of water in the video that's missing from the ingredients list.

If your dough keeps coming out super dry, that might be why! Watch the start of the video carefully.

Chef John said...

No there's not! If you watch and listen it's 1/4 cup at the beginning, and then 3/4 cup for a total of 1 cup. Of course with any dough, you have to adjust the flour as you add b/c of your conditions. Dry dough comes from people over packing and using too much flour, or adding it all at once.

Zach said...

2014 and still making this delicious dough. :)