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Thin and Crispy Whole Wheat Pizza Dough

In the overflow cookbook cupboard in our kitchen, you’ll find a couple of worn and bulging tattered-paged spiral notebooks. They’re my “culinary journals”, full of scribbled recipes and clippings from magazines and newspapers, recipes I hope to try someday. This thin and crisp whole wheat pizza dough is one of those scribbles, dotted with oil stains and fingermarks, in a treasured, well-used notebook.

Whole Wheat pizza dough, proofed

Years ago I numbered the pages and indexed the recipes I use all the time. On page 94, dated 1/15/81, is Alta Special Saturday Nite Pizza. (I must have skied Alta that day.) With wonderful nutty whole-grain flavor, this homemade whole wheat pizza dough is THE BEST, a winner. Every time I make pizza for friends, they say stuff like, “WOW! the crust is so nice and thin!”


In the old notebook the crust is topped with a simple homemade tomato sauce, sautéed mushrooms and mozzarella cheese. These days I’m more adventurous and like to top pizzas with basil pesto, chopped imported olives, and a variety of cheeses–smoked cheddar, fontina, goat or feta.

ingredients for Thin and Crispy whole wheat pizza dough

whole wheat pizza dough

Tomato sauce or pesto spread first is always a good way to go, but sometimes I brush the dough with nothing more than garlic and olive oil before sprinkling on any other topping. You might want to add sliced (or diced) fresh tomatoes, especially if they are warm off the vine.

Try cubed eggplant sautéed in olive oil–yummy. Southwestern flavored pizza toppings, mild enchilada sauce, diced green chilies, Monterey Jack cheese and chopped cilantro are a fun variation too.

Use restraint with the toppings–when a pizza is overloaded with goodies, the dough doesn’t bake as crisp.

whole wheat pizza dough rolled thinly

I always bake pizza on a pizza stone, which imitates a brick oven. The stone–an unglazed clay tile–goes in the oven 30 minutes before the pizza, so it’s very hot, and guarantees a crispy crust.

Sprinkle a long-handled pizza peel with cornmeal, so the dough slides easily from assembly to the hot pizza stone. If you don’t have a pizza peel, use a rimless baking pan sprinkled with cornmeal.

Pizza stones and pizza peels are nice tools to have, but don’t let want of equipment keep you from homemade pizza. All you need is a sprinkle of cornmeal on a baking pan–and you can assemble and bake the pizza right on the pan.

Craving fun and fabulous pizza ideas? Try this one topped with arugula, mushrooms, goat cheese, and walnuts. When peaches are at peak season, you must try this peach and arugula pizza.

Wishing you a fabulous week–get in the kitchen and make pizza–with whole wheat pizza dough!

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Whole Wheat pizza dough, proofed
Print Recipe
5 from 3 votes

Whole Wheat Pizza Dough and a few Topping Ideas

This whole wheat pizza dough has a wonderful nutty whole-grain flavor and a thin and crispy crust, a winning base for toppings of your choice. Makes 2 (12-inch) pizzas.  The dough mixing and the baking takes very little time, but plan on an hour to let the dough rise before rolling it out. Use that time to prep the toppings.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Rising time1 hr
Total Time1 hr 25 mins
Course: Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine: American, Vegetarian
Keyword: pizza dough, whole wheat
Servings: 2 12-inch pizzas



  • 1 1/4 teaspoons instant dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup and 2 tablespoons warm water (105° to 115°)
  • 1 teaspoon honey or agave syrup or organic cane sugar
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 3/4 cups whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 teaspoons sea salt
  • Cornmeal, about 3 tablespoons for the wooden peel

Topping Ideas:

  • Tomato sauce, homemade or purchased, about 1/2 cup per pizza
  • Pesto, homemade or purchased, about 1/4 cup per pizza
  • Grated or crumbled cheese, about 4 ounces per pizza
  • Mushrooms, sliced and sautéed in olive oil
  • Olives, pitted Kalamata or Nicoise, 1/4 cup per pizza
  • Onions, thinly sliced red or yellow, raw or lightly sautéed
  • Gimme Lean Sausage Style, 1/4 pound per pizza, crumbled and cooked. (see note)
  • grated Parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheese, for final sprinkle



  • In a large bowl, or in the work bowl of a heavy-duty electric mixer, sprinkle the yeast over the warm water and honey, stirring to dissolve. Let stand about 5 minutes.
  • Add the olive oil, 1 ½ cups of the flour and the salt. Stir with a wooden spoon until it all comes together. If using a machine, fit the bowl with a dough hook and knead on a low speed. Otherwise, turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead by hand. Knead 4 to 5 minutes, adding the remaining 1/4 cup of flour, and more, if necessary, until the dough is soft, smooth and elastic.
  • Place in an oiled bowl at least twice the volume of the dough. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature until doubled in size, about 1 hour.


  • Preheat the oven and the pizza stone to 475°F. Gently fold the dough over and divide into 2 portions. Form each into a flattened round. On a lightly floured surface using a rolling pin, roll one portion into a large round, about 13 inches. Place it on a wooden peel that has been sprinkled generously with cornmeal. 
  • Spread with tomato sauce and/or pesto, or brush generously with olive oil. Lightly top with some of the cheese and scatter your choice of toppings. Finish with more cheese and finally with Parmesan or Pecorino Romano.
  • Slide the pizza onto the stone and bake 10 to 12 minutes, until the bottom is brown and the cheese looks nicely melted. Use the wooden peel to transfer the pizza from the oven to a serving plate. 
  • To serve, use a pizza wheel (or I use scissors) and cut into portions, about 8 wedges per pizza.
  • Sprinkle more cornmeal on the wooden peel and make the second pizza.


Gimme Lean is meatless vegetarian sausage. I once fooled my father-in-law, it tastes so much like meat sausage!


Serving: 1g
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  • […] recipe is for one pizza, but you can make as many as you wish. Use my whole wheat pizza dough recipe or pick up some Iraqi flatbread—the cooking time will vary, depending on which you use, the dough […] Reply · 6 September, 2015

  • […] your pizza even more amazing with my homemade whole wheat crust. Thin crispy nutty whole wheat crust, with peaches, arugula, balsamic red onion, and smoky cheese […] Reply · 8 September, 2015

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