Looking for the best deep dish pizza at home? This recipe for Cast Iron Pizza creates a perfect pizza with crispy edges and a perfectly browned crust. Hot, fresh and ready in minutes with minimal clean up make this a weeknight or any night favorite family meal.
Cast Iron Pizza
We love homemade pizza nights! And this easy Cast Iron Pizza is requested by someone in our family at least once a week. Since it is so quick and easy to make, it is never an issue to whip one up for an easy dinner.
If you have never had a cast iron pizza before, it really is a whole new level of pizza! The cast iron skillet gets perfectly hot and makes an amazing deep dish pizza, with perfectly soft dough, that has those irrestiable crispy brown edges.
To keep things extra simple, we buy fresh pizza dough, already rolled out in the deli of our local grocery store. That way you do not have to worry about rolling out the dough and cleaning up the mess of all that flour!
You can add as many or as little toppings as you like, that part is up to you. But follow along to see why you have to try making your pizza in a cast iron skillet!
Cast Iron Skillet
Using store bought dough and a heated cast iron skillet are the secrets behind this easy deep dish skillet pizza. It really helps to let the dough sit on the counter for at least 30 minutes before baking the pizza. The dough will rise a little and be easier to handle when it is at room temperature.
It is extra important to heat the cast iron skillet before adding the dough! Preheating the skillet gives the dough that extra crunch on the outside, while the inside dough stays soft and tender.
A cast iron skillet retains heat, cooks evenly and can last a lifetime if cared for properly. They are inexpensive and can be purchased almost anywhere. We picked ours up at target, we have the Lodge 12″ Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Skillet.
We only used 5 ingredients to make this delicious pan pizza!
- Store Bought Pizza Dough: 1 pound (16 oz) of pizza dough, usually located in the bakery or deli department of your local grocery store.
- Olive Oil: or melted butter
- Pizza Sauce: we prefer to use Rao’s Pizza Sauce
- Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
- Sliced Pepperoni
Of course you can also use any toppings, cheeses or sauces that strike your fancy! We wanted to keep things simple to show you how we make our pizza in the cast iron skillet, but you can use any toppings you choose! However, it honestly is very hard to beat a perfect, classic pepperoni pizza.
Pizza Dough Tips:
We recommend letting the dough sit on the counter for at least 30 minutes before baking the pizza. The dough will rise a little and be easier to handle when it is at room temperature and not fresh out of the refrigerator.
How To Make Cast Iron Pizza
The pizza making process will move very quickly once you remove the pre-heated cast iron skillet out of the oven. Be prepared and have all your ingredients out and ready to go before you heat the skillet.
Heat: Preheat your oven to 500°F and place the cast iron skillet into the hot oven for 10 minutes to get extra hot.
Prepare Skillet: Remove the heated skillet from the oven (carefully, as it will be extra hot!) and turn the oven temperature down to 400°F. Coat the bottom and sides of skillet with olive oil.
Dough: Carefully add the pizza dough into the skillet and move it to fit inside the skillet as needed. Lightly brush olive oil on the edge of the pizza crust.
Sauce: Pour your pizza sauce of choice over the dough, spreading the sauce towards the edge of the pizza, but leaving about an inch uncovered at the edges of the dough.
Toppings: Quickly spread the cheese on top of the sauce in an even layer and spread your toppings of choice on top of the cheese layer.
Bake: Bake pizza for 20-25 minutes at 400°F. After the 20 minutes mark, watch the pizza carefully for the last 5 minutes to make sure it does not burn.
Rest: Remove from oven and let pizza rest in the skillet for 5 minutes before slicing pizza and serving! Enjoy!
How To Make The Best Cast Iron Pizza
- Preheat Skillet. It is important that you preheat your cast iron skillet in a 500°F oven for 10 minutes before adding the dough. By doing this simple step, it allows the dough to crisp up on the outside of the pizza while keeping the inside soft and tender.
- Olive Oil. Olive oil helps to crisp the dough BUT it also keeps the dough from sticking. You can also use avocado oil or even melted butter instead. If you choose to use butter for a more buttery crust, we still recommend brushing your cast iron skillet with olive oil to guarantee it won’t stick.
- Slicing The Pizza. Use a large flat spatula to remove the pizza from the cast iron skillet. It is easier to slice the pizza on a cutting board, rather than in the skillet. We usually cut our pizza and then return it to the cast iron skillet to help keep it warm.
- Dough. You can make your own dough or use store bought fresh dough from the bakery/deli of your grocery store. However, we highly recommend not using the pillsbury store bought pizza dough in the can. That pizza dough is great for many recipes, but not this thick, deep dish style pizza.
- Room Temperature Dough. Take the dough out of the refrigerator at least 30 minutes before. Pizza dough can be out anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours. Once the dough is room temperature it is so much easier to work with.
- Keep it simple! Keep toppings to a minimum and the crust will turn out perfect every time. Try to not use too many wet toppings (think freshly sliced tomatoes), as they can create a soggier crust.
How To Serve Cast Iron Pizza
Pizza is perfect all on it’s own and doesn’t need any sides, however there are a few classic ideas that we gravitate towards if we are having company over and want a more rounded meal.
- Side Salad: An Italian salad always goes perfectly with pizza!
- Caprese Salad: If you aren’t feeling a traditional Italian salad, you could always whip up a light caprese salad. If you’re feeling extra fancy, we have a great recipe for a Caprese Stuffed Air Fried Avocado!
- Bread Sticks: Extra carbs are always delicious!
- Wine: keep the Italian theme rolling with a nice bottle of wine. We love a good Chianti with our pizza.
- Dessert: Desserts are always welcome in our house! Cheesecake, tiramisu, cannoli or even just a bowl of gelato — you can’t go wrong!
If you aren’t into a nice thick crust, well you’re crazy, but that’s ok! You can still make cast iron pizza with a thinner crust!
This recipe calls for 1 pound of pizza dough, but if you prefer a thinner crust, you can use 1/2 pound of pizza dough rolled out into the same 12 inch size. This will result in a thinner pizza crust.
This pizza is best served fresh out of the pan while it’s still warm. Leftovers are good, but no where as good as they were fresh.
To reheat your pizza, we like to reheat it in the oven or air fryer. To reheat it in the oven, preheat your oven to 350°F and bake your pizza for 5 to 7 minutes, until hot. To reheat it in the air fryer, set your air fryer to 375°F and cook for about 3 minutes, until hot.
Cast Iron Pizza
- 1 lb 16 oz store bought Pizza dough, rolled into a 14 inch round
- 2-3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- ⅓ cup pizza sauce
- 1 heaping cup shredded mozzarella
- ½ cup sliced Pepperoni
- Preheat your oven to 500°F and place the cast iron skillet into the hot oven for 10 minutes.
- Remove the heated skillet from the oven (carefully, as it will be extra hot!) and turn the oven temperature down to 400°F.
- Working quickly, coat the bottom and sides of skillet lightly with olive oil. We like to do this with a pastry brush.
- Carefully add the pizza dough into the skillet and move it to fit inside the skillet as needed. Lightly brush olive oil on the edges of the pizza crust.
- Spread the pizza sauce on top of the dough, towards the edges of the pizza, leaving about 3/4 inch uncovered at the edges of the dough.
- Quickly sprinkle the cheese on top of the sauce, in an even layer. Then spread your toppings of choice (pepperoni) on top of the cheese layer.
- Bake pizza for 20-25 minutes at 400°F, until perfectly golden and cheese is melted. After the 20 minutes mark, watch the pizza very carefully for the last 5 minutes to make sure it does not burn.
- Remove pizza from oven and allow the pizza to rest in the skillet for 5 minutes before slicing pizza and serving! Enjoy!