The ultimate guide to pizza flour: Dough You Know?
Food and Drink

The ultimate guide to pizza flour: Dough You Know?

Author: MozaicNook

The master recipe for dough – what flour do you use? This is where your perfect dough starts from - by choosing the right type of flour. Your choice will be determined by whether you want your crust crispy thin or chewy Neapolitan masterpiece or even thick fluffy frozen one. We shall look at various types of flours as well as their secrets that will make you an excellent pizzaiolo.

Understanding flour basics

Flour is not just made up of ground wheat but it’s a complex ingredient that could either make or break your dough for pizza. The most important aspects of flour include:

  • Protein Content: This determines gluten formation and thus elasticity or chewiness.
  • Gluten: A protein network, which traps gas forming during fermentation making the dough structure and texture.
  • Ash content: Is responsible for flavor and color variations in the dough depending on the mineral content;

Various types of flour for pizza making

1. Tipo 00 Flour

Overview: It is regarded as the best Neapolitan pizza kind that you can have. Its grinding is very fine and has a modest protein percentage (usually 11-12%).


  • Protein content: 11-12%
  • Gluten: Moderate, providing a mix of both tender and elastic nature.
  • Ash content: Low, resulting in a light crust of dough.

Best For: Neapolitan-style pizzas; they are soft with pillowy crusts. With excellent quality development of gluten it can be spread thinly without being torn apart by hand.

2. Bread Flour

Overview: The greater amount of proteins (12-14%) inside this flour makes it desirable for those who want to make hard-crusted chewy pizzas.


  • Protein content – 12-14%
  • Gluten – High, producing a strong elastic dough
  • Ash content– Medium contributing to strong taste.

This flour is most suitable for New York Style Pizzas and other thin crust varieties which require chewy crispy texture.

Pro tip! If you’re throwing your dough up in the air use bread flour because its robust gluten structure will not let it break up mid-air unlike other flours that would crumble down.

3. All-purpose flour

Summary: All-purpose flour is a handy man and covers it all. It has a moderate protein content (10-12%) and can be used with various pizza flavors.


  • Protein content: 10-12%
  • Gluten: Moderate, with good elasticity and tenderness.
  • Ash content: Medium, suitable for most dough recipes.

Most suitable for: Personal experiments on homemade pizzas where one needs versatility of the flour. It is a friendly launchpad for starters.

Did You Know? Specialty pizzas may not be as they should when made by using all purpose flour despite its versatility. Just like Swiss Army Knife among flours— - does many things well but nothing great!

4. Whole wheat flour

Summary: Use whole wheat flour which contains bran, germ and endosperm of the wheat kernel hence higher nutrient contents as well as more unique taste.


  • Protein content: 13-14%
  • Gluten: High, but the bran can interfere with gluten development.
  • Ash content: High, provides a rich, nutty flavor.

It best suits at Healthier pizza choices that have denser crusts. It is usually mixed with white flour to give it good texture and taste balance.

Tip! While whole wheat flour is very nutritious, it can make your dough denser. Mix it with bread or all-purpose flour for a lighter texture.

The science of fermentation 

Fermentation is where all the magic happens. In this process, yeast consumes dough’s sugar and produce carbon dioxide and alcoholic substances that get trapped in the gluten network causing it to rise and develop taste.

Tipo 00 flour: It contains enough protein to allow a slow rising of the dough during which rich flavors develop without making it hard to eat.

Bread flour: The high levels of proteins mean that bread made from this can take longer fermenting time leading to a stronger gluten structure with a harder crust.

All-purpose flour: While this ferments well, its flavor and textural complexity may not be as good as some specialty flours.

Whole wheat flour: This must be handled carefully during fermentation as otherwise it will result in heavy dough. By adding honey or sugar, you feed the yeast better thus helping it rise more effectively.

Choosing the right flour for your pizza

Neapolitan pizza: Tipo 00 flour is best used when you want a soft, airy crust with just a hint of chewiness.

New York-style pizza: Bread flour strikes just the right balance between chewiness and crispness for such pizzas.

Frozen pizza: Such type works well if you want to make sturdy yet tender crusts that hold up perfectly under any topping load.

Healthy pizza: For healthy pizzas combine whole wheat with either bread or all purpose flours so that they become nutritious and delicious at once.

The power of flour

For bakers who wish to have perfect dough, understanding how different types of flours behave is very important. If you are an experienced pizza maker or beginner, using different kinds of flours may lead you into new tastes. Next time when you are rolling out a dough, always keep in mind that there is no such thing as average quality pizzas; only great ones can be prepared by using appropriate types of flour.

And always remember: pizza baking should be fun. Do not hesitate to sprinkle some flour on your nose and enjoy the cooking process. Buon appetito!