How to Grill Pizza

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If you love pizza, you will absolutely adore Grilled Pizza! Basically, its all the things you love about pizza but with a crispier, chewier crust that has that amazing charred BBQ flavor. With summer already here, crank up your outdoor grills and cook up some pizza!

I’m so happy to be sharing with you my Grilled Pizza recipe today. I’ve been making pizza on the grill nearly every summer to enjoy the warm weather and keep the house cool. It seems slightly intimidating, but once you get the method down, it couldn’t be simpler. This is more of a ‘how to grill pizza’ tutorial than a recipe and any and all toppings are optional! Lots of ideas below. Let’s get grilling!

grilled pizza

Dear Grilled Pizza, I love you.

Gordon and I have been grilling pizza for several years (before we moved to NYC and actually had a backyard…sigh) and lemme tell you, this stuff is addicting! Once you get the hang of grilling the pizza crust, the sky is the limit! Pizza in the oven is great in the winter but grilled pizza is where its at in the summer! Trust me when I say it will work. Trust the process and you too will be eating right alongside us. Yum yum!

pizza dough

How to Grill Pizza

A few notes before getting started: for all homemade pizza I make from scratch, I start with my Fail-Proof Pizza Dough recipe (a recipe on my site that has been popular for years). Divide that dough into manageable pieces for the grill and stretch and roll it out into the size you want. The size of your grill and/or who you’re serving will determine what size you make your pizzas. I did four individual pizzas that ended up being enough to feed two adults and three children. You *can* do a larger size pizza, but it can be tricky to flip. Ok, here’s how to do it:

  1. Preheat your grill to be about 500 degrees. I use a gas grill and pay attention to the thermometer on the lid of the grill. The grill itself will be hotter than 500 degrees, but that’s a good benchmark to look for before adding your dough.
  2. Stretch out your pizza dough into the shape and size you want and either place or slide onto the grill, being sure to avoid known hot spots. If you want to maintain more of an exact shape, consider rolling your dough out on a pizza peel with cornmeal to prevent sticking and then sliding it off carefully onto your hot grill.
  3. Cover and cook your crusts until they are puffed, bubbly and have grill marks and a few charred spots, about 2 minutes. It should release from the grill easily for flipping.
  4. Flip your pizza and quickly add sauce, cheese, and any desired toppings. Cover and cook another 2-3 minutes or until cheese has melted completely and the bottom of the crust has grill marks and a few charred spots.
  5. Remove from grill, cut into pieces and serve.

pizza dough on grill

Charcoal vs Gas Grills

I’ve made grilled pizzas on both charcoal and gas grills and the method remains the same. My only hesitation with charcoal is you can’t control the temperature quite as easily as you can with a gas grill. It’s not impossible and we have definitely have had (tasty) success. Just be sure to watch your crust as is cooks. It may need a few more minutes to get that char OR it might be ready to flip after 60 seconds. Just be sure to watch it carefully as you go.

My Pizza is Cooking too fast!

If your pizza crust is getting crispy or charred a little too quickly, your cheese won’t melt and your crust will burn. If you see that this is happening to you, your grill is too hot. Definitely reduce the heat or push some of the charcoal to one side to create a hot side and a cooler side. Next, once your pizza is cooked on the one side, remove it from the grill to a baking sheet, add the toppings and then slide it back on the grill to finish cooking.

toppings on pizza

My pizza is sticking! What do I do?

Don’t panic. This can happen from time to time. If you notice your pizza is sticking, leave it alone to cook and crisp up for another 30 seconds or so to see if it will release after it gets a little more charred. (It should!)

Also, keep in mind that your homemade pizza dough was coated in olive oil before being left to rise. It still should have some residual olive oil on it before it goes onto the grill. If there isn’t very much olive oil on your pizza dough, add a little extra. This will act as extra nonsticking insurance.

Grilled Pizza flavors to try

Use my other pizza recipes as inspiration for your next Grilled Pizza Concoction!

pepperoni grilled pizza

Grilled Pizza

If you love pizza, you will absolutely adore Grilled Pizza! Basically, its all the things you love about pizza but with a crispier, chewier crust that has that amazing charred BBQ flavor.
servings 6 servings
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 6 mins
Total Time 36 mins

Ingredients

  • 1 recipe pizza dough
  • 1 cup pizza sauce
  • 3 cups mozzarella cheese grated
  • 6 oz pepperoni
  • any other desired toppings

Equipment

  • BBQ grill

Instructions

  • Preheat your grill to be about 500 degrees. I use a gas grill and pay attention to the thermometer on the lid of the grill. The grill itself will be hotter than 500 degrees, but that's a good benchmark to look for before adding your dough.
  • Stretch out your pizza dough into the shape and size you want and either place or slide* onto the grill, being sure to avoid known hot spots.
  • Cover and cook your crusts until they are puffed, bubbly and have grill marks and a few charred spots, about 2 minutes. It should release from the grill easily for flipping.
  • Flip your pizza and quickly add sauce, cheese and any desired toppings. Cover and cook another 2-3 minutes or until cheese has melted completely and bottom of crust has grill marks and a few charred spots.
  • Remove from grill, cut into pieces and serve.

Notes

If you want to maintain more of an exact shape, consider rolling your dough out on a pizza peel with cornmeal to prevent sticking and then sliding it off carefully onto your hot grill. 

Nutrition

Calories: 478kcal | Carbohydrates: 35g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 74mg | Sodium: 1535mg | Potassium: 257mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 555IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 294mg | Iron: 3mg
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: how to grill pizza, pizza recipe
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4 Responses
    1. Lauren

      You can as extra insurance, but shouldn’t be necessary. The pizza crust should release easily from the grill once it’s cooked enough. There is residual oil on the dough from having raised in a little olive oil, but more is fine to add.