Can you freeze pizza dough? Here are all the tips you need for freezing homemade or store-bought dough for easy meals!
Got leftover pizza dough? Pizza dough recipes make enough for 2 to 3 pizzas, and sometimes you’ve got an extra dough ball or two. The best way to preserve the dough? Freezing it! This keeps the dough in tact for up to 3 months, perfect for saving for easy meals. But you’ll need to know a few pointers to keep the dough texture in tact! Here’s everything you need to know about how to freeze pizza dough. (And if you think you’ll eat it sooner, we’ve got an alternative for you too! Keep reading.)
Can you freeze pizza dough? Freezing is a great way to preserve pizza dough from a batch that you don’t plan to eat right away. You can also store the dough refrigerated for 2 to 3 days. But if you’d like to preserve it for up to 3 months, freezing is your best bet. Here’s how to freeze pizza dough:
- Then take each dough ball and place it in a sealable plastic bag. Suck out the remaining air in the bag using a straw, and write the date on the outside of the bag.
- Place in the freezer and store for up to 3 months.
- When ready to use, defrost using the instructions below.
Can you freeze pizza dough from the store?
Even more important than learning how to freeze pizza dough? Learning how to defrost it. You can’t rush the defrosting process or you’ll end up with a sticky mess. Here’s how to defrost frozen pizza dough:
- Defrost 24 hours: Remove the dough from the freezer and place it in the refrigerator for 24 hours before using.
- Bring to room temperature the day of making (30 minutes): The day of making the pizza, remove the dough from the containers, place it on a lightly floured surface covered with a towel, and allow it to come to room temperature before stretching, 30 to 45 minutes.
- Then you’re ready to stretch your pizza dough. Go to How to Stretch Pizza Dough.
Refrigerate the pizza dough
Want to make homemade pizza dough 2 to 3 days in advance? The best way to store it is refrigerated! In fact, making pizza dough in advance and refrigerating it is the best way to great tasting dough. The refrigeration time allows the dough to ferment, which adds a nutty, complex quality to the flavor of the dough. Once you taste it, you’ll see the difference!
Don’t refrigerate beyond 3 days though: the dough becomes tricky to work with after that. If you don’t use the dough within 3 days, you can freeze it using the instructions above.
More pizza recipes
We’re homemade pizza experts! We’ve spent years honing all the tips and tricks you need to make killer artisan pizza at home. Here are a few other resources you might enjoy:
- Try these 25 Great Pizza Recipes
- Make The Best Homemade Pizza
- Got a pizza oven? Make Pizza Oven Pizza Dough
- Make our Master Pizza Dough or Easy Pizza Sauce
Here’s how to make and freeze pizza dough with the perfect chewy texture—every time. For the best possible pizza dough texture, we recommend baking it on this pizza stone.
- * Tipo 00 or all-purpose flour (3 ⅓ cups)
- instant or active dry yeast ()
- kosher salt ()
- warm water (1 ¼ cups + )
- olive oil ()
- Combine the flour, salt, and yeast in a bowl or the bowl of your stand mixer. Stir to combine. Add the water and olive oil and stir until a raggy dough forms. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface.
- Knead the dough by pushing with the base of your palm, then reforming it into a ball. Continue kneading for 8 minutes until the dough feels pillowy and has a smooth, stretchy exterior. If the dough is very sticky, add a small amount of flour while kneading. Alternatively: attach the dough hook to a stand mixer and start the mixer on medium-low speed, then allow the mixer to knead for 8 minutes.
- The dough can be used immediately or frozen (go to Step 5). However for the BEST flavor, transfer the dough to separate sealed containers, large enough for the dough to double in size again, and store in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 days. The day of making the pizza, remove the dough from the containers, place it on a lightly floured surface covered with a towel, and allow it to come to room temperature before stretching, 30 to 45 minutes.
- To freeze the pizza dough, place each boule in a sealable plastic bag. Suck out the extra air with a straw, then seal the bag. Write the date of making the dough on the outside of the bag with permanent marker. Freeze for up to 3 months.
- To defrost pizza dough, remove the dough from the freezer and place it in the refrigerator for 24 hours before using. The day of making the pizza, remove the dough from the containers, place it on a lightly floured surface covered with a towel, and allow it to come to room temperature before stretching, 30 to 45 minutes.
Can you freeze pizza dough, how to freeze pizza dough, freezing pizza dough
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First things, first – you will need some pizza dough on hand before learning about storing and freezing pizza dough.
You can buy fresh, premade dough at the grocery store (Trader Joe’s or Safeway).
Or, you can make your own by using one of our recipes for Easy Pizza Dough Recipe or Sourdough Pizza Crust. The printable recipe for the easy pizza dough is at the end of the post.
Looking for some fun pizza ideas? Make spooky shaped pizzas (like a ghost shaped pizza, a spider, or a pumpkin for Halloween.
Storing Pizza Dough in the Fridge
Storing frozen pizza dough in the fridge is the best way. You can put the dough in your fridge for up to 2 days.
Store pizza dough in the fridge for a slow rise. Then, it is thawed when you are ready to bake it.
The cold fridge also keeps the pizza crust from rising too quickly. Plus, it gives the crust a chance to develop more flavor.
Here’s a Pro Tip
Take the crust out of the fridge at least 1 hour before baking. That way it has time to come to room temperature before going in the oven.
The freezing process of pizza dough is pretty simple.
First, you have to make it into a ball then lightly cover it with olive oil.
Then, add the dough to a plastic storage bag (like a Ziplock) or store pizza dough in an airtight container.
If you are using a plastic bag, be sure to squeeze all the air out before sealing. This helps prevent the dough from drying out.
For an airtight container, make sure to leave some headspace as the dough expands as it freezes.
Once you store the pizza crust in a plastic bag or container, add a label with the date on it. Or use a sharpie to write right on the bag or container.
That way you will know how long it has been in the freezer. Your unbaked crust can be stored in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Frozen Pizza Dough Instructions
One of the best tips I can give you is to make a frozen pizza dough ball. You can make it by rolling the pizza dough into a ball before freezing. This makes prepping thawed dough easier when rolling it out.
Depending on the size of your family, you can make multiple pizza dough balls so you always have some on hand. And then making a pizza crust is as easy as pulling a frozen dough ball from the freezer and thawing it in the fridge.
Be sure to get your pizza dough recipe to freeze below!
DefrostING Pizza Dough
Some of you may ask “how long to defrost pizza dough?”The simple answer is less than 12 hours. Defrosting pizza dough is pretty simple.
Just remove the frozen crust from the freezer, but don’t remove it from the bag or container yet.
Then let it sit in the fridge overnight. This will ensure that it is thawed all the way through and will be less sticky when rolling it out.
How to quickly defrost pizza dough?
Many of you are busy and don’t have the time to wait for slowly defrosting a pizza crust.
Here are some tips to quickly defrost pizza dough:
Pizza dough you can freeze
After thawing the pizza dough, it’s time to start preparing the crust.
- The first thing you need to do is put flour on your work surface. This will prevent the dough from sticking while you’re rolling it out.
- Next, put the dough ball in the center of your floured surface. Then, using a rolling pin, begin to roll the dough out into a circle. You can also use your fingers to stretch it gently. If your dough is sticky, you can put flour on your rolling pin to prevent it from sticking.
- Once you’ve rolled your crust into a circle, transfer it to a greased pizza pan or baking sheet. Then, use your fingers, and press the dough down into the pan to cover the entire bottom.
Now add your favorite toppings and bake your delicious homemade pizza!
Will the pizza dough rise after being frozen?
Yes, your pizza dough will continue to rise a little after being frozen. Make sure to thaw it completely before cooking so that it cooks evenly.
How do you let the frozen dough rise?
Let your dough thaw with the method you want. Once it’s thawed, you can let it rise in a bowl on the counter for 30 to 60 minutes before cooking. Your pizza dough is ready for cooking once it has doubled in size.
Can I refreeze my thawed pizza dough?
No, you shouldn’t refreeze it because it will affect the texture and taste of your crust.
Recommended EQUIPMENT For Storing Pizza Crust
These leak-proof containers (shown here) are ideal for keeping your frozen pizza dough fresh.
Plastic freezer bags, like Ziplock, will keep your dough fresh and frost-free.
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Ziploc Variety Pack
Best Pizza Dough Recipe to Freeze
This pizza crust recipe is perfect for freezing.
Best Ever Pizza Dough
This easy homemade pizza dough recipe delivers a fail-proof, pizzeria-quality pizza crust every time. It’s an ideal recipe for freezing pizza dough, too, so you always have some on hand to make ahead.
Main Course, Lunch, Dinner, Pizza
- cup (153 grams)
- (95º to 105º)
- teaspoons (7 grams) active dry yeast
- In a large mixing bowl, combine flours and salt together. Set aside.
- In a small bowl, sprinkle yeast over lukewarm water and olive oil. Wait 2-3 minutes, then pour into the flour mixture. Stir ingredients together, then knead with your hands or a stand mixer with a dough hook for 3 minutes. Let the pizza dough rest for 15 minutes.
- Knead rested dough by hand or in stand mixer for 3 minutes. Cut into 1 large, 2 small, or 4 mini (kid’s size) equal pieces and shape each into a ball.
- Place on a heavily floured surface, cover with dampened cloth or plastic wrap. Let rise until doubled for 2 to 3 hours at room temperature, or 8 to 24 hours in the refrigerator. (If you refrigerate the dough, remove it 30 to 45 minutes before you begin to shape it for pizza.)
- To make pizza, place each dough ball on a lightly floured surface and use your fingers to stretch it gently, then your hands to shape it into rounds or squares.
- Top with your favorite toppings, and bake at 425ºF degrees for 12-15 minutes for individual pizzas and 20 minutes for a full-size pizza.
Let us know what you think!
The frozen yeast dough products available at the supermarket are a nice convenience. But, did you know that yeast dough can also be prepared at home and frozen to nearly duplicate the convenience of a ready-to-use product?
Fleishmann’s Yeast introduced home bakers to freezing yeast dough in their 1972 publication, Fleishmann’s Bake-it-easy Yeast Book. Included in the book were the very first recipes for frozen dough one could make at home, freeze, and bake later. The recipes introduced were specifically developed for freezing and to this day, they remain the standards for freezing yeast doughs.
It should be noted that freezing dough at home may not yield the same results as commercially frozen dough but is still a means to delicious, freshly baked bread when time is short. Frozen dough manufacturers have access to superior dough stabilizers and freezing equipment that freeze the dough very quickly, allowing doughs to freeze with minimal damage to the yeast and dough structure. Dough freezes slower in home freezers increasing the risk of damage to the yeast and dough structure.
Tips for Preparing Yeast Dough for the Freezer
- Original freezer-dough recipes used all-purpose flour. Today, it is recommended to replace all-purpose flour with bread flour as it helps to maintain better structure.
- Active dry yeast should be used instead of fast-acting yeast. Fast-acting yeast is not ideal for recipes that require a long rising time. King Arthur Baking suggests making the dough with cool, not lukewarm liquid (water or milk) to keep the yeast as dormant as possible so that it is less vulnerable to damage during the freezing process.
- To compensate for the yeast that will inevitably die in the freezing process, King Arthur Baking suggests increasing the yeast by ¼ to ½ teaspoon per 3 cups (360 grams) of flour.
- Dough may be frozen at two junctures: 1) after kneading and before the first rise (proofing) OR 2) after the first or second rise. American Test Kitchen tested both junctures and found “freezing the dough between the first and second proofs was the best strategy. The first proof ensured that enough yeast had fermented for the dough to develop complex flavors and for some gluten development for better baked size. The remaining viable yeast cells then finished the job as the dough thawed and proofed for the second time.”
- Flash freeze the dough in the freezer for 1-2 hours. Dough should be covered during flash freezing, thawing, and rising prior to baking to prevent the dough from developing a dry crust.
- When the dough pieces have formed a hard shell around the outside, transfer to a zipper freezer bag or air-tight freezer container. Return the dough to the freezer. Dough may be frozen up to 1 month. For best results, use dough sooner rather than later.
When ready to use, remove needed dough balls, loaves, rolls, or disks from the freezer and allow to thaw covered in the refrigerator, a warm location, or combination until doubled in size. Do not over proof. Since the yeast and bread structure have been compromised during freezing, over proofing may cause the dough to collapse on itself.
Previously formed dough can be thawed in a greased baking pan until double. Disks should be allowed to thaw and then rolled or shaped (pizza crust or any shape or specialty desired), placed in a greased baking dish, and allowed to rise until doubled. (Rolled dough for pizza crust does not need time to double unless desired.) When dough has reached the desired size, bake as directed.
Recipes for freezer dough can be found on the Fleishmann’s website. Some examples include: pizza dough, bread dough, and dinner rolls. If one is so lucky to have a copy of Fleishmann’s Bake-it-easy Yeast Book, 1972, a variety of yeast doughs developed for freezing can be found therein.
Fresh-baked bread is always more delicious than reheated. If you plan ahead, you can freeze yeast dough to save time provided you remember to pull it from the freezer in time—that’s the hardest part!
Almost Pop ‘n’ Serve Dough, Cook’s Illustrated. https://www.cooksillustrated.com/how_tos/6065-almost-pop-n-serve-dough
Can Dough Be Stored in the Refrigerator or Freezer?, Fleishmann’s Yeast. https://www.fleischmannsyeast.com/frequently-asked-questions/
Fleishmann’s Bake-it-easy Yeast Book, 4/1972.
Kneaded Notes: Holiday Baking Guide, Red Star® Yeast. https://redstaryeast.com/blog/holiday-baking-guide/
Nicholson, Annabelle. (2021, July 6). Can I Freeze My Yeast Dough?, King Arthur Baking Company®. https://www.kingarthurbaking.com/blog/2021/07/06/freeze-yeast-dough-make-ahead-bread
Woodward, Peggy. (2020, May 7). How to Freeze Yeast Dough. Taste of Home. https://www.tasteofhome.com/article/freezing-yeast-dough/
Reference to any commercial product, process, or service, or the use of any trade, firm, or corporate name is for general informational purposes only and does not constitute an endorsement, recommendation, or certification of any kind. Persons using such products assume responsibility for their use and should make their own assessment of the information and whether it is suitable for their intended use in accordance with current directions of the manufacturer.
I am a graduate of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with a BS in Home Economics Education and Extension and from Colorado State University with a MS in Textiles and Clothing. I enjoy spending time with family and friends, gardening, quilting, cooking, sewing, and sharing knowledge and experience with others.
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The grocery store by my apartment charges $9 for 4 balls of pizza dough, and it makes me laugh because that sounds so expensive.
If you have a stand mixer, it’s very little work and very easy to make your own. Let me show you how to do it!
To get started, combine warm water, yeast, and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer and let it sit for 10 minutes, until it’s foamy. This lets you know that the yeast is alive and ready for action.
Next add bread flour, salt, and olive oil to the yeast water mixture.
Use the dough hook or a wooden spoon to mix this all together until roughly combined.
Fit the bowl and dough hook on the stand mixer and knead for about 10 minutes on medium low until the dough is relatively smooth.
Cover the bowl and let the dough rise for about 30 minutes, until it has doubled in size.
A well-risen dough will have all these stretchy webby strands on the side of the bowl when you pull the dough away from the edge.
Move the dough to a floured surface and divide it into four even pieces.
Roll each piece into a ball, and place the dough balls into a ziptop bag, making sure they aren’t touching each other. I use a piece of parchment paper or wax paper to keep them from touching, so I can take them out one at a time later on to thaw.
When I want to make pizza, I’ll pull the dough out the night before or the morning of the day I want to make pizza for dinner, and put it in the fridge to thaw. Then roll the dough out as usual, put your favorite toppings on, and bake in a 500ºF oven for 10-15 minutes, to your desired crispiness. Enjoy!
- Cookie dough can be frozen in balls, a log, or disks.
- Properly wrapping and storing cookie dough will prevent freezer burn.
- Frozen cookie dough will last in the freezer for two months.
Pulling frozen cookie dough out of the freezer makes for quick and easy access to sweet treats when a craving strikes. And, freezing cookie dough is also a great way to eliminate food waste, allowing you to save prepared dough for use at another date. It can also help you prep ahead for special occasions when a lot of cookies are needed.
“You can have a selection of dough pre-made, frozen, and ready to bake as soon as an oven is pre-heated,” says Kathryn Gordon, chef-instructor of pastry and baking arts at the Institute of Culinary Education.
But what’s the best way to freeze cookie dough and bake it later? Find Gordon’s tips below.
You’ll determine whether to freeze cookie dough into balls, logs, or disks depending on the recipe. Below you’ll find the steps for each shape, along with what recipes are best suited for each method.
How to freeze cookie dough balls
Freezing cookie dough in pre-scooped balls is ideal for drop cookies such as chocolate chip, oatmeal, sugar, and peanut butter. If the dough is frozen in balls, you’ll be able to pull out the number of cookie dough balls you want and bake them off.
- Scoop the dough. Use a cookie dough scoop to portion out the dough and roll it into balls. Place each formed ball on a baking sheet or plate lined with parchment paper.
- Flash-freeze the dough. Place the baking sheet in the freezer for one hour to allow the dough to freeze. This will prevent the dough balls from sticking together, as well as prevent them from being squished while stored in the freezer.
- Put the cookie dough in an airtight container. Transfer the dough balls to a storage container with a lid. Gordon suggests layering the balls with a piece of parchment or wax paper in between each layer. The dough can also be stored in an airtight freezer bag with layers of parchment or wax paper in between.
- Store the cookie dough. Label the container or bag with the date. Place the filled container or bag in the freezer.
How to freeze a cookie dough log
Roll the dough into a log, then wrap and twist the ends to secure before placing into an airtight bag or container.
Freezing cookie dough in a log makes it simple to prep slice-and-bake cookies, like shortbread or butter cookies, at any time.
- Form the dough. On a countertop, form the prepared cookie dough into a log. Gordon suggests refrigerating the dough for 15 minutes to allow it to chill before forming the log. This will help to create a smooth, uniform shape.
- Wrap the dough. Place the log in the middle of a 15-inch by 15-inch piece of parchment paper or plastic wrap. Fold the bottom side of the paper or plastic up over the dough. Roll the dough until the paper or plastic is fully wrapped around it.
- Secure the wrapping. Twist or fold in the ends of the remaining paper or plastic wrap on either side of the log to make a seal.
- Store the dough. Place the wrapped dough in an airtight freezer bag or lidded storage container. Label the bag or container with the date before putting it in the freezer.
How to freeze cookie dough for cut-out cookies
The best method for freezing dough for cut-out cookies such as sugar or gingerbread is to store it in disk form, as cutting out the cookie shapes ahead of time can cause issues with each shape. The multiple cut-outs will also take up quite a bit of space in the freezer.
- Wrap the dough. Wrap each disk in plastic wrap or parchment paper, tucking in any ends.
- Store the dough. Place the disks in an airtight freezer bag or lidded storage container labeled with the date. Put the bag or container in the freezer.
Does freezing cookie dough ruin it?
According to Gordon, if cookie dough is properly wrapped and stored, it will freeze just fine. The key is to prevent freezer burn, no matter the method or type of cookie dough you’re freezing. “Wrap it tightly to minimize the air gap, which can contribute to oxidation of the dough or freezer burn,” she says.
Classic cookie dough choices such as chocolate chip, oatmeal, peanut butter, and sugar are great for freezing. For meringue-based cookies such as macarons, it’s best to bake the cookies first, and then freeze them. Macaron batter is tricky to store, and freezing the mixture before the macarons are baked will result in incorrect texture and structure.
How long does cookie dough last in the freezer?
While freezing cookie dough certainly prolongs its use, it won’t last in the freezer forever. According to Gordon, once cookie dough has been correctly wrapped and stored, it can last in the freezer for two months. It’s important to toss frozen cookie dough if it has started to dry, has turned dark in color, or smells rancid.
How to bake frozen cookie dough
Many cookies can be baked straight from the freezer, but you’ll want to defrost cookies that need to be sliced or cut into shapes.
Dough balls: Remove the number of cookies you want to bake. Place the dough on a lined or greased cookie sheet. Allow the dough to thaw while the oven preheats if the recipe calls for baking room temperature dough. Drop cookie dough is often chilled before baking, so there may not be any need to allow them to thaw. Bake the cookies according to the original recipe.
Cookie log: Remove the log from the freezer and let it thaw on the counter for 15 minutes. Unwrap the log and slice the cookies needed with a sharp chef’s knife. Gordon suggests rotating the log 90 degrees between each slice to avoid compression from the knife. Bake the cookies according to the original recipe.
Cut-out cookies: Remove the cookie dough disk from the freezer. Allow the dough to thaw on the counter, or let it thaw in the fridge overnight. Roll out the dough while it’s still cold, cut the shapes, and bake the cookies according to the original recipe.
Freezing cookie dough eliminates waste from extra cookie dough and provides convenient access to cookie dough when a cookie craving strikes. Cookie dough can be frozen in balls, a log, or disks, depending on the type of cookies and the original recipe. No matter the type of cookie dough being frozen, it’s important to properly wrap and store the dough to prevent freezer burn.
There are few things that smell better than the aroma of freshly baked bread. And it isn’t just the smell of homemade bread that has an appeal. Bread making requires you to work with your hands to mix, knead, shape, and in the case of scored loaves, mark the dough into an edible work of art. As delicious as the end result can be, and no matter how accomplished you may feel after making a loaf, it’s often an endeavor that we can reserve for slow weekends at home since making bread from scratch takes some time.
One workaround is to make your dough in the evening, store it in the fridge overnight, and bake it the next day, as King Arthur details. And refrigerated bread dough will actually develop a richer flavor since it ferments while in the fridge. However, what if you have bread dough in your fridge, but your plans change and suddenly you aren’t able to bake it the next day? The good news is you don’t have to toss it out, you can put the dough in the freezer to make later, but there are some things you need to know before you do that.
Timing is the key to success
Bread dough can be frozen, but the key is to make sure you place it in the freezer at the right time. As The Spruce Eats reports, a bread dough that’s made using yeast can be frozen, as long as you’ve shaped it and it has gone through its first rise. This step is important and will determine the success of your bread, since according to Bob’s Red Mill, ensuring the proper amount of time for a dough’s rise is what gives bread its desired fluffy texture.
Some bread only requires one rise, such as English muffin dough, although many need a second rise. And MasterClass notes that frozen bread dough that’s been through its first rise can rise a second time, it just needs to thaw first. If you don’t have time to let your dough go through the first rise before freezing, Taste of Home reports that it is possible to bake bread from frozen dough that hasn’t risen.
The article cautions that the dough will need to thaw overnight in the fridge first, and then it will need to rest in a warm place to rise but know that this method means it can take up to two times as long for the dough to reach its first rise. So, no matter which method you opt for, putting the dough in the freezer means a freshly baked loaf of bread is always within reach.
Nothing beats the taste of home-baked pizza covered in cheese and a layer of your favorite toppings. Unfortunately, making new dough every time you crave pizza can be a little bit of a hassle because of all the time and work that goes into it.
And perhaps this may leave you wondering, can you freeze pizza dough?
Short answer – yes, you can. In fact, pizza dough can stay in a freezer for up to three months. Just roll your dough into small balls, put it in freezer bags and you can grab some any time you miss homemade pizza.
What Does Freezing Do to Your Pizza Dough?
When you put your pizza dough in a freezer, yeast activity slows down due to the drop in temperature. In the refrigerator, this activity is just minimized but when in the freezer, the yeast becomes inactive completely. However, the yeast itself does not die no matter how low the temperature goes.
As soon as the dough is taken out of the freezer and starts to defrost, the yeast reactivates and produces a gas that causes the dough to rise.
You will need:
- Pizza dough
- Freezer bags/plastic wrap
- Olive oil
- Marker pen
Make Pizza Dough
You can’t freeze pizza dough without having the dough in the first place. So, prepare your dough using the guidelines of your desired recipe.
And assuming you would like this dough to last you a while, it is best to choose a couple recipes so you can have a different variety for each pizza day.
Allow the Dough to Rise
Once you have pounded your pizza dough, do not cut it into packaging pieces yet. Give it time to ferment as one piece. Allowing your dough to ferment in bulk helps enhance its flavor. You can either leave it for two hours on your kitchen counter or for a day in the fridge.
Some people, however, freeze their dough before it has had a chance to ferment. Truthfully speaking, no rule dictates whether doing it before is better than doing it after.
You can choose whichever option works for you. All you need to do is mark the dough so you can know whether it needs fermenting when thawed or whether it’s ready to spread out into a pizza.
For future convenience, though, it would be best to allow the dough to ferment before freezing. That way, you won’t have to wait for it to rise when rolling it into a crust.
Shape the Dough into Balls
After your pizza dough has fermented, cut it into small balls. How many balls you make will depend on your specific recipe. Make sure each ball is the appropriate size for the crust you intend to make in the future.
Oil the Balls
Oil your dough balls before packaging. This will make it easier for you to pull them out of the freezer bag once they have defrosted. You can apply a light coat of olive oil or spray with baking spray. Or you can just use your favorite cooking oil.
Put your balls of dough in a freezer bag and close it or just wrap them up with a cling film. We recommend storing each ball in a separate bag so they don’t freeze on to each other.
Use a marker pen to label the contents. Make sure the label has a date and a note to say whether the balls need fermenting before baking or not.
Store in the Freezer
Put your dough balls in the freezer. They can stay here indefinitely but it is best to use them within three months.
Now we have no doubt that you know for sure you can freeze your pizza dough for future use. And as you can see, it is a really simple process. It should work for any recipe and floor type.
How to Defrost Frozen Pizza Dough
In the morning of the day you wish to bake your pizza, transfer the dough from the freezer to the refrigerator and let it sit for about 12 hours.
Once this time has elapsed, remove the dough from the fridge and place it on the kitchen counter. Leave it here for about 30 minutes to come to room temperature.
If you can’t wait for the entire 12 hours, you can defrost the dough in a container of cold water. Just make sure it is still properly sealed and you are changing the water every 30 minutes.
You can also thaw your dough on your kitchen counter. It will take about 2 ½ hours for the balls to completely defrost. However, you will need to refrigerate after this period to prevent bacteria growth.
After your pizza dough has thawed properly, take it out of the freezer bag and spread it out into a crust. If you had not fermented your dough before freezing, you will want to do it before doing this or continuing with the rest of your pizza recipe.
Will Freezing Change the Texture or Taste of Your Pizza?
How freezing works is that it converts the moisture in the dough into ice, causing it to expand. Over time, these ice crystals can break through the walls of the dough cells, slightly changing the texture of the dough.
So, yes, freezing can change the texture of your pizza balls, meaning fresh dough is, to some extent, always a better option texture-wise.
The taste of your dough, on the other hand, will remain unchanged. Unless your wrapping bags are not sealed properly such that the taste is being contaminated by other foods in the freezer, your dough should be able to taste just as good as it did the first time you made it.
Can You Refreeze Your Pizza Dough After Thawing?
No, you cannot. After you have frozen your pizza dough once and put it out to defrost, it is a bad practice to put it back in the freezer.
The yeast responsible for fermenting the dough is usually dormant while in the freezer. But once the dough is taken out, this fungus revives very quickly and goes back to its job of converting sugars into alcohol and carbon dioxide.
If the dough is left to sit at room temperature for too long, say 6 to 12 hours, it will quickly become sour and develop a coarse texture, which will lead to a considerable loss in quality.
Now, if you put this dough back into the freezer, you will not have the best results the next time you make pizza out of it.
Sure, the fermentation process will stop as soon as the dough adjusts to the freezer temperature, but the sour taste and the hard texture the dough acquired while outside won’t go away.
And while the resulting pie may still be safe to eat, working the dough itself will be an uphill task because the extended fermentation process will have robbed the dough of its moisture and elasticity.
Tips to Remember When Freezing Your Pizza Dough
While freezing pizza dough is a fairly easy task, there are a few things you should keep in mind to get the most out of the process. Read on!
Keep Dough Balls Away From Strong Foods
Foods that are strongly scented should be stored much further away from your pizza balls to avoid tainting the smell or taste of the dough. If your freezer is divided into compartments, you can use one section to store the dough and another to store strong foods.
If you have to store these two together, make sure to seal the dough properly. You could even put the bagged dough in a separate air-tight container.
Ferment At Least Once
If you don’t allow your pizza dough to rise, you will be dealing with flat, lifeless dough. Decide whether you want to ferment your dough before or after freezing.
Don’t try to speed up the defrosting process or you will ruin the dough texture and the resulting pizza. Let the dough thaw slow and steady, preferably in the refrigerator.
If you came here because you were wondering whether you can freeze your pizza dough, now you know the answer. Freezing pizza dough is a convenient way of speeding up your pizza-making process.
Just cut the dough into small balls, put it in bags, and throw it in the freezer. And when it’s time to cook, leave it to thaw slowly in the fridge and don’t let it sit too long on the kitchen counter.
Still got questions regarding freezing pizza dough? Write it down in the comment section.
Barbara is an enthusiastic food-exploring person that goes through different culinary experiences. She got inspired by creating a pizza blog post after she tasted one of the best-selling pizzas in Toledo.