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Sourdough Pizza Crust

Sourdough Pizza Crust makes everyone’s favorite food even better. It takes several hours to make the dough, but the vast majority of the time is hands-off.

beauty shot

If you still need to make your sourdough starter, go ahead and use this recipe for Easy Pizza Dough in the meantime.

You can learn How to Make a Sourdough Starter for next time. Then I can show you how to Feed and Maintain Sourdough Starter or How to Keep a Small Sourdough Starter.

An overview of this recipe is also available as a web story.

Now, for those of you who are ready to make the best pizza of your life, lets see how to do it.

Recipe Ingredients

ingredients for sourdough pizza crust in bowls on a white surface.
  • Active sourdough starter (100% hydration)
  • Warm water 
  • Unbleached Bread flour (see Tips and Tricks below for alternate flour options)
  • Salt
  • Olive oil
  • Cornmeal

How to make the best Sourdough Pizza Crust:

sourdough starter and water in a mixing bowl. Dough with hook in mixer.
  • Start with an active starter. Add the water and some of the flour to make a sponge.
  • Allow the sponge to rest for 30-60 minutes before mixing the dough.
  • Add olive oil, salt and the rest of the flour to the dough.
  • Knead with the dough hook for 5 minutes. The dough should gather on the hook and clear the sides of the bowl. Alternately, mix and knead the dough by hand.
a blob of pizza dough on a white surface.
  • The dough will be quite sticky right after it’s mixed.
  • The dough will become more elastic and cohesive over the 3-5 hours of fermentation.
Pizza dough in a bowl shown 4x.
  • Over 3-4 hours of fermentation the dough will become lighter and more elastic.
  • Every hour of so stretch and fold the dough to redistribute the yeast and aerate the dough.
  • After fermentation the dough should be aerated and elastic. It’s ready to shape or the dough can be refrigerated for up to 2 days before using.
Pizza dough divided in two. Folding and shaping rounds of pizza dough.
  • Divide the dough into two equal portions
  • Fold piece of dough onto itself for form a small packet.
  • Flip the dough over and form the dough into a tight ball.
  • Let the dough balls rest for at least 10 minutes and up to 30 minutes before shaping.
  • Once the dough is ready, visit this post to see exactly how to shape pizza dough by hand.
a pizza without topping on a wooden peel and a pizza with topping on a wooden peel.
  • Place the dough onto a wooden pizza peel or the back of a sheet pan heavily dusted with cornmeal. The cornmeal will act as ball-bearings so you can slide the pizza. You’re now ready to top and bake (or grill) your pizza.
  • You can bake your sourdough pizza dough in a very hot oven, or you can grill your pizza over charcoal for the best pizza in the world. The lightly charred crust is a thing of beauty!

Recipe Tips and Tricks

  • Make sure your starter is fed and very active before mixing the dough.
  • This sourdough pizza dough recipe was developed using a 100% hydration starter. You’ll need to adjust the water or flour if your starter is not 100%.
  • This recipe was developed using unbleached bread flour. The recipe also works well with semolina or 00 pizza flour.
  • If you want to work ahead, you can make the dough, allow it to ferment and then refrigerate for up 2 days. Take the dough out of the refrigerator and go right ahead and shape the pies.

A timeline for making Sourdough Pizza Crust from scratch:

  • Feed your starter the day before or early in the morning of the day you want to make the dough. You want to make the dough with an active starter.
  • Make the dough in the late morning or early afternoon. The entire process can take up to 5 hours so allow enough time if you plan to use the dough the same day it is made.
  • The dough will ferment for about 3-5 hours over the course of the afternoon. The more active your starter is and the warmer the ambient temperature, the faster the dough will ferment. In cold months allow closer to 5 hours for fermentation.
  • 30 minutes before you’re ready to bake (or grill!) the pizza, begin the process of shaping the dough.

Recipe FAQs

Why does my sourdough pizza dough come out bready?

If you add too much flour or not enough water to the dough the pizza can bake up dry and bready. A wetter dough will make a lighter and crisper crust. Do not knock all the air out of the dough before shaping. If you vigorously knead the dough before shaping you’ll end up with lots of tiny air bubbles and a bready texture.

Can sourdough pizza dough be made in advance?

Yes. Sourdough pizza dough can be held in the refrigerator for up to 2 days or frozen for several weeks.

Should you punch down sourdough pizza dough?

There is no need to “punch down” pizza dough. After the initial fermentation gently fold and stretch the dough to redistribute the yeast. By gently folding the dough you retain some of the air bubbles that formed during fermentation and your pizza will have a lighter and crisper crust.

I know you hate to throw away that sourdough discard. Check out these recipes that use sourdough discard.

Since you’ve got your starter fed, peruse the entire list of My Best Sourdough Recipes. Have fun!

beauty shot
A closeup shot of pizza crust crumb.

Hey, since the grill (or oven) is still hot, why not try this light & luscious Dessert Pizza with fresh berries and Greek yogurt drizzle.

You can also use this dough to make Philly Cheesesteak Calzones or Breakfast Calzones with chorizo & eggs.

Can You Freeze Sourdough Pizza Dough?

Yes, you can freeze Sourdough Pizza Dough. Make sure your starter is very active so you have plentiful yeast in the dough. Bring the dough through the initial fermentation. Form it into a tight ball, wrap it in plastic and put it into a freezer bag.

If you love this recipe as much as I do, I’d really appreciate a 5-star review.

Print Recipe
4.65 from 158 reviews

Sourdough Pizza Crust Recipe

Sourdough Pizza Crust makes everyone's favorite food even better. It takes several hours to make the dough, but the vast majority of the time is hands-off.
Prep Time30 minutes
Bake Time15 minutes
Rising Time4 hours
Total Time4 hours 45 minutes
16 servings


  • 8 oz active sourdough starter (1 cup, 100% hydration)
  • 8 oz warm water (1 cup)
  • 15 oz bread flour (3 cups)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons table salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • cornmeal for dusting


  • Combine the starter, water and 2 cups of the flour. Mix on low speed with the paddle until the flour is incorporated. Cover the bowl and set aside for 30 -60 minutes.
    8 oz active sourdough starter, 8 oz warm water, 15 oz bread flour
  • If using a stand mixer, change to the dough hook. With the mixer running on low, add the salt, olive oil and the remaining the flour. Mix on medium speed until the dough begins to clear the sides of the bowl and gathers on the hook. Increase the speed to medium-high and knead for 5 minutes. If mixing by hand add as much of the flour as you can using a spoon or spatula, then turn the dough out onto a floured surface to finish kneading in the rest of the flour.
    1 1/2 teaspoons table salt, 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Dump the dough onto a floured surface and knead into a smooth ball. Place the dough into a lightly oiled bowl and turn it over to coat the surface. Cover the bowl and set aside at room temperature.
  • After 30 minutes uncover the bowl, lift one side of the dough and fold it into the middle of the dough. Repeat with the other three sides of the dough then flip the dough over. You're basically turning the dough inside-out to redistribute the yeast and stretch the gluten. Cover the bowl and after 30 minutes repeat the procedure. Cover the bowl and after 60 minutes repeat the procedure again.
  • Cover the bowl and set aside for another 60 minutes. By the end of 3 hours the dough should be lively, elastic and airy. If the dough is still sluggish give it another hour at room temperature. At this point you can refrigerate the dough for up to 2 days or you can go ahead and make the pizzas.
  • Dump the dough onto a floured surface, do not knead. Using a bench scraper or sharp knife, cut the dough into 2 equal pieces. Form each piece into a tight ball by cupping the dough in the palms your hands and moving the dough in a circular motion. This is a soft dough so this step will help make forming and moving the pizza easier. Cover the dough and allow it to rest for 20 minutes. If the ball flattens right away and the dough still seems very soft, form the ball again and give it another 20 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, if you're baking the pizza in the oven preheat to 500 °F. If you have a pizza stone preheat that too. If you're
  • Using the tips of your fingers, gently flatten and press the dough into a disc. Use your fingers to stretch the dough into a 12-14” "round. You can also try to drape the dough over your two fists and pull from the edges to slowly enlarge it to a 12" round. Avoid using a rolling pin because you don't want to deflate all the air bubbles in the dough. Visit this page to see step by step photos of how to shape pizza dough by hand.
  • Place each crust onto a wooden peel or pizza pan sprinkled heavily with corn meal. Proceed to top and bake/grill or as you like.


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KA Stand Mixer
Pizza Cutter
Pizza peel

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The recipe makes enough dough for 2 pizzas.


Calories: 124kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 0.3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 219mg | Potassium: 27mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 0.1g | Vitamin A: 1IU | Calcium: 4mg | Iron: 0.3mg
Have you tried this recipe?Mention @eileen.bakingsense or tag #bakingsense!
Recipe Rating

Frances Hodgson

Saturday 23rd of September 2023

I adore this recipe, it comes out perfect every time! I’m wanting to preshape and bake the crust without toppings for a gathering so that the guests can make their own without the mess of shaping/cooking. How would I do this? Would you recommend cooking it for about 10 minutes to cook the dough shortly before guests arrive and then finishing the bake with toppings? Thank you!!

Eileen Gray

Saturday 23rd of September 2023

Yes, par baking would probably work best.

Amanda B

Saturday 9th of September 2023

This is the best sourdough recipe I’ve made. Hands down. I’m about to make the dough for the third time. I made fry bread with it the first time and pizza tonight and it’s seriously the best recipe ever! Thank you so much! My kids think I’m some kind of magician in the kitchen now!!!

J Clayton

Saturday 26th of August 2023

Making now! Usually cover sourdough bread with tea towel. Is that ok or use plastic wrap?

Eileen Gray

Sunday 27th of August 2023

A towel is fine. It's just so the surface doesn't dry out.


Sunday 20th of August 2023

This pizza crust was absolutely fantastic! I've made pizza dough from commercial yeast plenty of times and it's always good but this sourdough crust was a game changer. The flavor was amazing and the crust was perfectly crispy yet soft and fluffy on the inside. Will definitely being using this recipe for every pizza night now!


Wednesday 2nd of August 2023

Do you have any troubleshooting tips if the dough is sticky? I’ve followed the recipe exactly but as I stretch and fold it’s quite sticky. Thanks!

Eileen Gray

Wednesday 2nd of August 2023

The dough should become less sticky and more elastic as it ferments. You can always sprinkle a little more flour on it if it's unworkable. If you plan to refrigerate it overnight it will become even easier to work with.