Margherita pizza in a skillet
Skillet Margherita Pizza Recipe Filled With Fresh Melted Mozzarella Cheese, Ripe Tomatoes And Herb Basil Leaves . Baking in a cast iron skillet over high heat ensures a golden, crunchy crust .
Fresh, locally made pizza always tastes better than ordered than delivered, and you can’t go wrong with a classic combination like the Margherita pizza. Using a cast iron skillet is similar to cooking with a pizza stone, as this material is excellent at retaining heat which helps create a crunchy crust.
Believe me, once you try this concept, you’ll want to try it again and again with the other layer. For convenience, this recipe uses store-bought dough that is usually found in the refrigerator section of your local market. If you have a homemade pizza dough recipe that you love, definitely use it!
This ad will expire in 15
How to make Margherita pizza in a frying pan
- Leave the cooled pizza dough at room temperature for 30 minutes.
- Place the oven rack in the middle and preheat it to 475°F (246°C).
- Heat a 12-inch cast iron skillet in the oven.
- Roll pizza dough into a 12-inch circle.
- Carefully add the dough to the pan, brushing the edges with olive oil, and bake for 3 minutes.
- Add tomato sauce, mozzarella cheese and tomato slices.
- Bake until cheese melts, and crust is golden, 10 to 12 minutes.
- Top the pizza with salt, pepper and fresh basil.
Tanning the perfect crust
There are a few tricks for a crunchy pizza crust. The first is to heat an iron skillet in a 475 degree oven before adding the dough, this quick start is the cooking process the moment it comes in contact with the pan.
An even layer of olive oil in the pan creates a non-stick surface that sautes and adds flavor to the dough. Brush the edges with oil so that each bite, from center to edge, is delicious. Sprinkle some salt and Italian seasoning for the herb crust, then bake the dough before adding the toppings.
When testing this recipe several times, I found that the dough was not cooked enough. The high moisture components added on top of the raw dough prevented the dough from hardening. Even higher baking temperatures didn’t work and made the crust too thick and tough on the bottom.
The solution was to partially bake the dough for a few minutes without any layer so the surface could cook off and get rid of the excess moisture. I do a similar technique when roasting pizza. Once the additional ingredients were added, it was no problem to cook the crust completely, melting the cheese on top.
Margherita pizza toppings
The beauty of this pizza is the minimal ingredients that allow the tomatoes, cheese, and basil to shine through. First put on some tomato sauce or pizza sauce, I like to use homemade marinara sauce to get a little more consistency. Fresh mozzarella adds a mild, sweet flavor and is usually sliced thick, but grated or buffalo mozzarella are also excellent options.
There are many types of tomatoes, choose one at the peak of its ripeness, when cooking, the flavors are concentrated and become sweeter. I love the small size and strong flavor of a Campari cocktail or tomato. Finally, use fresh basil leaves, but don’t add them until you’re ready to serve because they will wilt quickly from the heat. The leaves can also be thinly sliced for a stronger flavour.
Keep pizza warm in the skillet
Not only does a cast iron skillet make an excellent pizza pan, it’s also great for keeping pizza crisp and warm while you eat the first slice or two. I recommend cutting the pizza into slices on a wooden board, and then adding the extra slices back to the warm pan. Place the pan on the stove so that the crust does not become wet and the cheese remains melted.
serve this with
- classic caesar salad
- Tuscan instant soup
- Minestrone soup
Why pizza should be baked twice
There is a lot of moisture in raw pizza dough, so baking it separately first removes surface moisture from the bottom and top. During the five minutes or so, it takes to add toppings that allow for the staging of cooking. The second bread browns the cheese, concentrates the tomato flavor, and cooks the dough from the inside. This bar-bake technology ensures that all ingredients are cooked evenly for maximum flavour.
A classic Margherita pizza recipe filled with fresh melted mozzarella cheese, ripe tomatoes and herb basil leaves. Bar-beak to ensure a golden, crunchy crust.
Preparation time 45 minutes
Cooking time 15 minutes
Total time 1 hour
- ▢1 tablespoon olive oil, plus more for brushing
- ▢1 pound fresh, store-bought or homemade pizza dough
- ▢½ cup tomato sauce, or pizza sauce
- ▢4 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, cut into 8 slices
- ▢2 ripe tomatoes, cocktail, Campari or Roma, sliced about 10 inches thick
- ▢10 fresh basil leaves
- ▢kosher salt, as needed for seasoning
- ▢Black pepper, as needed for seasoning
- If you are using store-bought pizza dough, let it sit at room temperature for 30 to 45 minutes.
- Place the oven rack in the central position and preheat to 246°C.
- Place a 12-inch cast iron skillet in the oven to heat.
- Flour a work surface, dough, and a rolling pin. Roll the dough into a 12-inch circle.
- Carefully remove the pan from the oven and place it on a heat-resistant surface.
- Add the olive oil to the skillet and use a paper towel to distribute it evenly in the skillet.
- Carefully add pizza dough to the hot skillet, arranging the edges over the corners.
- Grease the edges of the crust with olive oil.
- Bake the pizza dough for 3 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and spread the pizza sauce evenly over the dough.
- Place the cheese evenly over the sauce.
- Place the tomatoes evenly over the cheese.
- Bake the pizza until the bottom is golden brown and crunchy, 10 to 12 minutes.
- Sprinkle with salt and pepper and evenly place the basil leaves on top.
- Cut on a cutting board and enjoy hot.
- iron frying pan
- pizza cutter
- Separate slicing of dough can be ignored by covering pizza with bread until cheese has melted, about 12 to 14 minutes. Allow the pizza to sit in the pan for 5 to 10 minutes before serving to allow the dough to finish cooking.
- Additional slices can be kept in the pan to keep the crust crunchy and warm until you’re ready to eat the next piece.