Whole Wheat Pizza Dough Recipe photo by Taste of Home
Total Time
Prep: 25 min. + standing
This freezer-friendly whole wheat pizza dough recipe is easy to make and ready to use in a flash. All you need is your favorite pizza sauce and toppings.

Updated: Dec. 05, 2023

Pizza night happens on a weekly basis at our house. While a premade pizza crust is perfect when you have no time to spare, I much prefer making the pizza dough from scratch.

My family loves the hearty and nutty flavor of a whole wheat crust. This whole wheat pizza dough recipe is not only nutritious (and delicious!), but by using quick-rise yeast, it’s ready for the oven in less than 30 minutes.

Ingredients for Whole Wheat Pizza Dough

  • Quick-rise yeast: Also known as fast-rising or instant yeast, this type of yeast is best for recipes that require a single fast rise. Here’s everything you need to know about baking with yeast.
  • Sugar: Sugar feeds the yeast, which is necessary to make the dough rise. Our recipe calls for granulated sugar, but honey is a delicious alternative.
  • Salt: Don’t forget the salt! It adds needed flavor to the dough.
  • Flour: This pizza dough is made with a mix of whole wheat flour and white whole wheat flour. The major difference between the two is that whole wheat flour is milled from red wheat, and white whole wheat flour is milled from white wheat. Whole wheat has a nutty flavor and gives the pizza a heartier texture. White whole wheat is lighter in flavor and helps give the pizza a softer texture and a chewier bite. Use extra flour in any of these whole wheat flour recipes.
  • Warm water: Mixed with oil for flavor, warm water activates the yeast and decreases the rise time.

Directions

Step 1: Make the pizza dough

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In a large bowl, combine the yeast, sugar, salt and whole wheat flour. Set it aside. In a small saucepan, heat the water and oil to 120° to 130°F, and then stir the water and oil into the dry ingredients. Add in enough white whole wheat flour to form a soft dough. The dough will be sticky.

Editor’s Tip: An instant-read thermometer is a quick and easy way to check the water temperature. Our Test Kitchen’s favorite? The Thermapen One.

Step 2: Knead the dough

Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead until it’s smooth and elastic, six to eight minutes.

Editor’s Tip: One way to tell if your dough is kneaded enough is to press your finger into the dough. If the indentation stays, the dough needs more work. If it springs back, the dough is ready to rest.

Step 3: Let the dough rest

Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let rest for 10 minutes.

Step 3: Punch and divide

Punch down the dough and divide it into three portions. Use the dough immediately, or cover it with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight, or put it in an airtight container and freeze for up to one month.

How to Use Whole Wheat Pizza Dough

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To make a pizza with this whole wheat pizza dough recipe, lightly coat a 12-inch pizza pan with cooking spray, and then sprinkle with 1 tablespoon cornmeal.

Sprinkle a small amount of flour on a flat surface, and roll (or hand-stretch) one portion of the dough into a 13-inch circle. Carefully transfer the dough to the prepared pan. Build up the edges of the pizza, and top with homemade pizza sauce and your favorite pizza toppings. Bake the pizza at 450° for 10 to 12 minutes, or until the crust is lightly browned. Or try using this whole wheat pizza dough in stromboli recipes or quick pepperoni calzones.

Whole Wheat Pizza Dough Variations

  • Add dried herbs: For additional flavor in your whole wheat pizza dough, add a 1/2 teaspoon of savory dried herbs to the dry ingredients. Dried oregano, basil, finely chopped rosemary, or an Italian seasoning blend are all delicious options.
  • Make it garlicky: A teaspoon of garlic powder or finely chopped fresh garlic added to the dry ingredients will add a subtle garlic flavor to the dough.
  • Add some cheesiness: Stir 1 tablespoon of freshly grated Parmesan or Romano cheese into the dry ingredients.
  • Use different flour: For a lighter flavor and chewier texture, use only white whole wheat flour in this recipe. No whole wheat flour in your pantry? Here’s how to make pizza dough with all-purpose flour.

How long does whole wheat pizza dough last?

Wrapped tightly and stored in the refrigerator, whole wheat pizza dough should last seven days.

Can you freeze whole wheat pizza dough?

To freeze whole wheat pizza dough, wrap each portion tightly or seal it in an airtight container. The dough will keep for one month in the freezer. When you’re ready to use it, defrost the dough in the fridge overnight before preparing your pizza.

Whole Wheat Pizza Dough Tips

What’s the difference between whole wheat pizza dough and regular pizza dough?

The difference between whole wheat pizza dough and regular pizza dough comes down to the types of flour used. All-purpose flour, which is most commonly used for pizza dough, is made by grinding the inside of wheat kernels. Its protein content is about 11%. In contrast, whole wheat flour is made by grinding the entire kernel of wheat, including the exterior. It has a higher protein content at about 14%. Because whole wheat flour can result in slightly dry bakes, this recipe uses a bit more water than other pizza dough recipes.

Do you need to proof whole wheat pizza dough?

You need to proof this whole wheat pizza dough, but it’s a very short proof: only 10 minutes of resting time before using it. You can also let it sit in the fridge overnight, which is what our Test Kitchen does with traditional pizza dough.

Whole Wheat Pizza Dough

Prep Time 25 min
Yield 3 pounds (enough for 3 pizzas).

Ingredients

  • 3 packages (1/4 ounce each) quick-rise yeast
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 2-1/4 cups whole wheat flour
  • 2-1/2 cups water
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 to 3-1/2 cups white whole wheat flour

Directions

  1. In a large bowl, combine the yeast, sugar, salt and whole wheat flour; set aside. In a small saucepan, heat water and oil to 120°-130°; stir into dry ingredients. Stir in enough white whole wheat flour to form a soft dough (dough will be sticky).
  2. Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest for 10 minutes. Punch down dough; divide into 3 portions. Use immediately, refrigerate overnight or freeze for up to 1 month.

Nutrition Facts

1/4 of 1 pizza crust: 260 calories, 5g fat (1g saturated fat), 0 cholesterol, 296mg sodium, 46g carbohydrate (3g sugars, 8g fiber), 11g protein.

Pizza, egg pockets, stromboli—this make-ahead whole wheat pizza dough has endless potential for quick and impressive breakfasts, lunches or dinners. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen