My Big Green Egg is capable of grilling and smoking, but I also learned that it makes a darn good pizza oven.
You can buy pizza dough in most grocery stores or from some pizzerias, but I like to make my own dough. I always use type 00 Italian flour. It reminds me of the pizzas I used to eat in Europe – thin, crispy and delicious. If you can’t find the flour in the store, you can buy it online.
Pizza is so subjective. Everyone has his or her favorite toppings, which is why homemade pizza is a solution to a happy meal. I’m a simple kind of gal. I like a touch of tomato sauce, salami, mozzarella and piccante oil.
When I first tried making pizza on the egg, I made a fatal error. I prepped my pizza before I heated up the egg. By the time I was ready to transfer the dough to the grill, it stuck to the pizza paddle and fell apart as I pushed and pulled it onto the grill.
The next time, I waited, and I dusted the paddle with plenty of cornmeal. With a quick flick of the wrist, the pizza slid right onto the pizza stone. But I got so excited to eat it, that I took it off too soon. The edges were golden, but the center crust was still a little doughy.
By my third attempt, I had it down. My crust was light and crispy and my cheese was beautifully bubbly and golden.
One other thing that I’ve learned (four pizzas later) is that you want to use a lot of charcoal to get the 700-degree heat used in pizzerias. If you only use a few chunks, your heat won’t get up past 500. You can still make a darn good pizza at that temp, but just make sure that you cook it long enough to really crisp up.
- For the best heat, use a lot of charcoal
- Don’t top your pizza until the grill is ready
- Use plenty of cornmeal on your pizza paddle
- Cook it a little longer
- Pizza dough
Add lump charcoal to the Big Green Egg, filling to the first line. Tuck a natural charcoal starter into the charcoal and light it. Let it burn for about 10 minutes with the lid open.
Place the plate setter in the grill, feet down. Add the grid plate and pizza stone to the egg.
Close the lid. Leave both vents fully open and preheat to 500-700 degrees F.
Generously sprinkle cornmeal on a pizza paddle.
Place rolled out pizza dough on the paddle. Top with sauce, cheese and toppings.
Burp the egg (open it about one-inch to release some heat). Then, open it all the way. Sprinkle cornmeal on the pizza stone.
Slide the pizza onto the stone.
Bake for 10-20 minutes, depending on how high the temperature is. You want the edges to be golden, the bottom to be cooked through and the cheese to be melted.
Use the paddle to remove the pizza from the grill. Slice and serve.