6 Secrets for Making the Perfect Cheese Pizza

6 Secrets for Making the Perfect Cheese Pizza

Earlier this month, America celebrated National Cheese Pizza Day. Whether you make your pizza in a commercial kitchen with a white-coat team of professionals or at home with a kindergartener at the countertop, these tricks of the trade take the traditional American pizza and transform it into a pizzeria masterpiece.

Ditch the Pans

The first step to creating the perfect crispy-bottom and gooey-topped pizza are the right tools. Baking sheets and aluminum pans have no place in a pizza kitchen. Replace them with a pizza stone or screen, and a paddle. The paddle makes it much easier to get the pizza in and out of the oven while the stone or screen creates the perfect crust.

Get the Right Dough

Most chefs have their own favorite pizza dough recipe, but the most basic ones are usually the best. It is shaping the dough that requires the most practice to achieve that perfect shape without an excessive amount of shrinkage in the oven. First, chill the dough. Use cornmeal and not flour to dust your surface. Allow the dough to stretch around your hands rotating it until it moves freely, without any friction. Spinning is the best way to stretch out the dough, but it can take some practice.

Top it

Always put your pizza on the screen or stone before topping it. Stick with good mozzarella, provolone, and/or feta cheese. Cheddar or Monterrey Jack cheese has a low melting point, making them less ideal for pizza. Push toppings all the way to the edge of the pizza, and avoid piling too many toppings, which may cause uneven cooking. The pizza should be no more than an inch thick. The order of toppings is also crucial to achieving the optimum flavor and texture of your pizza. Certain toppings such as spinach, basil, meats, and garlic must go underneath the cheese, not directly on top where they will easily burn.

Cook It

Pizza must go in a hot oven, so use the prep time to preheat your oven to 500 degrees and allow the oven to reach full temperature before putting in the pizza. Pizza cooks high and fast, so check the pizza through the window every 3-4 minutes and turn the stone or screen if necessary to achieve an even golden brown around the edges. Cooking time should be no more than 10 minutes. If it is not done in under 10 minutes, your oven is not hot enough.

Cut It

Don't ruin your culinary creation by running a messy pizza cutter through it. Instead, allow your pizza to cool on a wire rack for 2-3 minutes to allow the cheese to set up the crust to preserve its crisp texture. If you use a pizza cutter, start in the middle of the pizza, and run the cutter back and forth about an inch at a time until you have cut through the entire pizza.

Final Touches

The difference between your average weeknight pizza and professional perfection is the final touches. Add a sprinkle of parmesan or Romano, a little chopped parsley to the top, and take your pizza to a completely new level.


  1. comment authorFavito Pizza Oct 8, 2018

    Pizza is definitely a heart throbber. And it is even tastier when dipped in real cottage cheese. The Cheese Pizza Tips you have mentioned are really amazing and can add a cheery on the cake while cooking. Thanks for the information. Looking forward to more such posts. :)

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