Pizza Margherita

Total Time

Prep: 30 min. + rising Bake: 15 min.


2 pizzas (8 servings each)

Updated: Nov. 21, 2023
This homemade pizza margherita, named for Queen Margherita of Italy, shows off the colors of the Italian flag with red tomatoes, white mozzarella and fresh green basil. You'll be glad the recipe makes not one but two 13-inch pizzas! —Loretta Lawrence, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina


  • 3 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm water (110° to 115°)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups bread flour
  • 2 cans (14-1/2 ounces each) diced tomatoes, drained
  • 8 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh oregano or 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 20 fresh basil leaves, roughly torn
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil


  1. In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. In a large bowl, combine the oil, sugar, salt and 1 cup flour; beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.
  2. Turn onto a floured surface; knead for 6-8 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease the top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
  3. Punch dough down; divide in half. Roll each portion into a 13-in. circle. Transfer to 2 greased 14-in. pizza pans; build up edges slightly. Cover with a clean kitchen towel; let rest for 10 minutes.
  4. Spoon tomatoes over dough. Top with cheese, oregano, basil, pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Drizzle with oil. Bake at 450° for 15-20 minutes or until crust is golden brown.
Homemade Margherita Pizza Tips

What can you do if the dough springs back when you roll it out?

Sometimes your dough will spring back, but that’s OK. Let it rest on the counter for a few minutes, then use a rolling pin or your fingers to stretch the dough to your desired size. If you’ve refrigerated your dough, make sure it's at room temperature or it will continue to spring back. Read these tips from a pizza chef to make your best pie at home.

Can you make margherita pizza ahead of time?

This whole pizza can be made ahead of time, or you can just make the dough ahead. Once your dough is kneaded, place it into an oiled bowl, seal with plastic, and let it hang out in the fridge overnight. To use, let it come to room temperature. You can also use this dough to make other great recipes like stromboli or calzones.

Can you use fresh mozzarella instead of shredded?

Fresh mozzarella is a great way to level up this pizza. It won’t be a true margherita pizza if you add more toppings—but feel free to throw pepperoni, sausage or your favorite toppings on as well. Here's the best way to reheat pizza (if you have leftovers).

Maggie Knoebel, Taste of Home Associate Recipe Editor/Tester

Nutrition Facts

1 piece: 304 calories, 15g fat (7g saturated fat), 36mg cholesterol, 625mg sodium, 25g carbohydrate (3g sugars, 2g fiber), 17g protein.