As many a home chef can attest, pizza is one of the hardest dishes to replicate in your own kitchen. Getting that perfect pizzeria-quality taste from at-home pies ain’t easy – but that’s probably because you’re doing it wrong.
What makes it so hard to make great pizza at home is that pizza should be cooked at least 550°F to 600°F – well above the maximum temperature of standard ovens. But there’s a solution that doesn’t involve buying a commercial pizza oven (which would just be ridiculous): grill your pizza.
Grills heat up much hotter than home ovens – reaching upwards of 600°F, creating the soft-and-chewy-on-the-inside, crispy-bubbly-and-charred-on-the-outside kind of crust that’s typical of wood-fired pizza joints.
Lest you think this is simply a new-age internet hack, think again. Grilled pizza is a legitimate style of pie made famous in the ’80s at Al Forno in Providence, Rhode Island. The best part about this pizza is that anyone can make a great version of it as long as you have good dough and high-quality ingredients.
This version – created by celebrity chef Bobby Flay of Mesa Grill and Bobby’s Burger Palace – is incredibly simple and perfectly delicious.
*Recipe by Bobby Flay, courtesy of Thanksgiving.com
- 1 ball pizza dough, at room temperature (can be store-bought)
- For brushing and drizzling olive oil
- To taste kosher salt
- To taste freshly ground black pepper
- 1 pound fresh mozzarella, sliced 1/4-inch thick
- 3 Roma tomatoes, sliced 1/4-inch thick
- 1 handful fresh basil leaves, rolled up, thinly sliced crosswise
- 1 Prepare grill for direct and indirect cooking. Heat grill, and make sure it is hot before you begin grilling the pizza. It's hot enough when you can hold your hands about 1 inch over grates for no more than 2 seconds. (But be careful!). While the grill gets up to temperature, gently stretch and shape the room-temperature dough into 12-inch round on a flat surface.
- 2 Brush top of dough with oil, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss dough on grill, oil-side down. Grill until bottom is golden brown, about 1 minute, checking frequently. If it is browning unevenly, use spatula or tongs to rotate dough 90 degrees and cook for another minute. Top of pizza dough should bubble up with air pockets.
- 3 Flip dough over and grill other side until golden brown and just firm – only about another minute or so. Transfer pizza crust to sheet pan. Cover grill so it retains heat for next step.
- 4 Drizzle top of crust with more olive oil. Evenly arrange mozzarella and tomato slices on top of dough and season with salt and pepper. Return pizza to grill on sheet pan, cover grill, and cook for 3 or 4 minutes to melt cheese.
- 5 Remove pizza from grill and sprinkle with fresh basil. Slice and serve immediately.