Frozen Pizza Shells

I hate to admit this. I have bought frozen pizzas. I hang my head in shame and beg the cooking gods for forgiveness. However, sometimes you just need a quick supper.

I find the crust of frozen pizza have improved over the years but still aren’t great. Then, you have a limited choice of toppings and they seem to be less than generous with the toppings.

What is a person to do when they feel lazy and want a home made pizza with limited work? If you make some frozen pizza shells, you reach into the freezer, throw some toppings on it and bake a tasty home made pizza the way you like it!

This recipe makes one shell but it doubles or triples well if you want to make several shells. Also, it is a good basic pizza dough to use right away without freezing. Just top and cook as instructed.

I like some whole wheat in my pizza crust. If you don’t, just replace the whole wheat flour with more all purpose flour. In these instructions I use my stand mixer. In the recipe below I will include instructions for making the dough by hand.

I have included the dry measures for flour but you have to be careful measuring flour by dry measures. You have to sift the flour into a measure and then use a knife to level it. If you just scoop it out, it will be compressed and you will get too much flour. It is much more accurate to weigh your flour and I include the weights of the flours.

I mixed the following dry ingredients in the bowl of my stand mixer:

  • 250 ml (1 cup) all purpose flour 130 grams (4 1/4 oz)
  • 250 ml (1 cup) whole wheat flour 130 grams (4 1/4 oz)
  • 12 ml (2 1/2 tsp) quick rise yeast
  • 8 ml (1 1/2 tsp) sugar
  • 4 ml (3/4 tsp) salt
  • 5 ml (1 teaspoon) Italian seasoning mix (optional)

I put the following in a microwave safe measuring cup.

  • 175 ml (3/4 cup) water
  • 40 ml (3 tablespoon) vegetable oil

Heat the mixture to between 120 to 130 F in the microwave. It takes about a minute in mine and should feel quite warm to the touch but not hot.

Pour the liquid over the dry ingredients and attach the dough hook to your stand mixer. Mix on low until the dough starts to form a ball on the dough hook. Mix for 7 minutes more.

Flour a surface and put the dough on it. Knead for a few seconds to get a smooth ball. Cover the ball with a towel and let rest for 10 minutes.

Spray a 12 inch pizza pan with baking spray.

Press the dough into a flat disc and then roll it out to a twelve inch circle. Put the dough onto the pizza pan. Pinch up the edge to make a ridge. You can use the crust at this point without freezing it. Just follow the instructions after letting the pizza thaw for 30 minutes.

Put the pan in the freezer for two hours. Remove the pan and take the dough off it. Wrap the dough well or put it in a large plastic bag and seal. Store in the freezer until ready to use.

To cook your pizza, put it back on a pizza pan and let it thaw for 30 minutes. Spread pizza sauce or marinara sauce over the crust. Put your favourite toppings on the pizza.

Add as much grated mozzarella or packaged pizza cheese that you like. I use about 375 ml (1 1/2 cups).

Bake the pizza on the lowest rack of a 425 F oven for 20 to 25 minutes until the crust is golden.

Cut into wedges with a large knife or rotary cutter.

The Verdict

This is a really good pizza crust. Of course it isn’t as authentic as one cooked in a wood-fired pizza oven but it is way better than most frozen pizza shells.

Having a frozen pizza shell lets everyone choose their own toppings, something kids really like.

The Old Fat Guy

Frozen Pizza Shells

Frozen Pizza Shells

Ingredients

  • 250 ml (1 cup) all purpose flour 130 gram (4 1/4 oz)
  • 250 ml (1 cup) whole wheat flour 130 gram (4 1/4 oz)
  • 12 ml (2 1/4 tsp) quick rise yeast
  • 8 ml (1 1/2 tsp) sugar
  • 4 ml (3/4 tsp) salt
  • 5 ml (1 teaspoon) Italian seasonings (optional)
  • 175 ml (3/4 cup) water
  • 40 ml (3 tablespoons) vegetable oil

Instructions

  1. For a stand mixer:
  2. Put the flours, yeast, sugar and salt in the bowl of the mixer and stir together.
  3. Put the water and oil in a microwave safe measure and heat to between 120 to 130 F (quite warm to the touch)
  4. Add the liquid to the flour and mix using the dough hook until a ball starts to form around the dough hook.
  5. Mix for 7 minutes.
  6. Turn the dough onto a floured surface and need for a few seconds to form a smooth ball.
  7. For mixing by hand.
  8. Put the all purpose flour, yeast, sugar and salt in a large mixing bowl and stir to mix.
  9. Put the water and oil in a microwave safe measure and heat to between 120 to 130 F (quite warm to the touch). Mix with a sturdy wooden spoon.
  10. Add the whole wheat flour a little at a time, stirring between additions, until the dough is too stiff to mix by hand.
  11. Put the remaining whole wheat flour on a work surface and turn the dough onto it.
  12. Knead for 7 minutes, incorporating the remaining whole wheat flour.
  13. For both methods:
  14. Cover the dough with a towel and let it rest for 10 minutes.
  15. Spray a twelve inch pizza pan with baking spray.
  16. Press the dough into a small flat disc with your fingers.
  17. Roll the dough into a twelve inch circle.
  18. Fold the dough in half and put it on the pizza pan.
  19. Unfold the dough and pinch the edge to form a rim.
  20. You can use the crust at this point without freezing it. Just follow the instructions after letting the pizza thaw for 30 minutes.
  21. Put the pan in the freezer for 2 hours.
  22. Remove the crust from the pan and wrap it or put it in a large plastic bag.
  23. Store it in the freezer until ready to use.
  24. To use the pizza dough:
  25. Preheat an oven to 425 F.
  26. While the oven is heating, put the frozen crust on a pizza pan and let it thaw for 30 minutes.
  27. Spread pizza or marinara sauce over the crust.
  28. Top with your favourite toppings.
  29. Spread grated mozzarella or pizza cheese over the toppings.
  30. Cook on the lowest rack of the oven for 20 to 25 minutes, until the crust is golden.
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