Make restaurant-quality pizza at home with one go-to dough recipe, killer toppings, and the hottest (really!) new wood-fired oven

By Chris Hughes
February 20, 2018
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Nostalgic cast iron pies are back in style, like this cheesy, chewy example piled high with pepperoni, spicy Italian sausage, and extra mozz. The only thing missing from this throwback from the ‘80s pizza taverns of yore: some faux wood paneling, a red-checkered tablecloth, and maybe a stand-up arcade game in the corner.

Recipe: Classic Cast Iron Pizza Pie

Photo: Jennifer Causey; Prop Styling: Mindi Shapiro Levine; Food Styling: Mary Claire Britton

Who doesn’t love pizza night? The bespoke dough, that swoop of tomato sauce, and all the toppings and cheese you see fit. But there are a handful of essential items to help you make the most of your weekly carbo-load. These go-to pizza tools make for impeccable pizzas, from our old-school Anchovy Oil Pesto-and-Greens Pizza to the Clam-and-'Nduja Pizza topped with spicy sausage and briny clams. All that's left to do is slice away.


Photo: Jennifer Causey; Prop Styling: Mindi Shapiro Levine; Food Styling: Mary Claire Britton

1. Roll Out a Delicious Dough

Chef Michael Scelfo (Waypoint in Cambridge, Massachusetts) shares his tips:

Flour Liberally
Wet dough is your worst enemy. I keep my dough buried in a bowl of flour until I'm ready to work with it.

Don't Chill
Let your dough come up to room temperature and remove any air bubbles by pressing down lightly with your fingertips.

Trust the Pros
When I'm feeling lazy, my move is to buy dough from one of my favorite pizza shops. If you're nice, they'll be happy to sell you some.

Recipe: Sourdough Pizza Dough

Photo: Jennifer Causey; Prop Styling: Mindi Shapiro Levine; Food Styling: Mary Claire Britton

2. Make it Hot

With the ability to reach temperatures of more than 900 degrees, the Uuni 3 Wood-Fired Pizza Oven can transform any dough into char-blistered Neapolitan bliss. (Bonus: it comes with its own pizza peel!) Not ready for the full pizzeria-at-home experience? A high-quality pizza stone, made from a thick slab of fire clay, absorbs moisture for a crispier crust. For a Classic Cast Iron Pie, splurge on a cast iron pan from Smithey Ironware in Charleston.

Courtesy of Ecco

3. Learn From a Master

In Bianco: Pizza, Pasta, and Other Food I Like (Ecco, 2017), acclaimed pizzaiolo Chris Bianco divulges his methods for making the sweetest sauce, a perfect crust, and the "grandma pies" he grew up eating in New York. $35;

Courtesy of Manufacturer 

4. Cut it Out

Prevent sloppy slices with the OXO Clean Cut Pizza Wheel, which effortlessly segments both thin-crust and deep-dish pizzas. $13;

Courtesy of Manufacturer 

5. Top with a Sweet Surprise

Jacobsen Salt Co.'s apiary offshoot infuses cherrywood-smoked honey with lapsang souchong tea in its Bee Local Smoked Honey Sauce. Drizzle it over pizza for an extra-pungent oomph. $12;

Related: Pull-Apart Pizza Bread