Heat is what makes a great pizza, heat to get that crust to rise into bubbly, blistered shape, to melt cheese, and turn a disk of dough into basically the best food there is. Thankfully the grill is a pizza’s best friend: It generates a lot more heat than most home ovens can, getting you closer to the conditions created by a proper pizzeria’s deck oven which can burn upwards of 600 degrees. So lets take a look at the proper steps to making the best grilled pizza possible.
1. USE A PIZZA STONE
A pizza stone will emulate the brick or stone floor of a traditional pizza oven. Ceramic stones get very hot and disperse the heat evenly across the crust. You can definitely cook a pizza across the grates like a barbarian but for the perfect pie you want a pizza stone.
2. GAS OR CHARCOAL
We like gas (stay with us here) because it will allow better temp control, BUT we also recommend using a wood chip smoker box to get that smoked flavor. Charcoal is fine but it might take longer and with the smoker box you get better control without sacrificing flavor. Whichever you choose you will want to preheat the oven to 500 with the stone inside.
3. THE DOUGH
Proof your dough by taking it out of the fridge a half hour before stretching, start with an 8oz ball for a 12 inch pizza. When stretching the dough start from the center and push out to the edges, but don't let the center get too thin. Put a light coat of olive oil over the crust for that extra bit of perfection.
4. SAUCE IT UP
The dough is the backbone of a good pizza but the heart is the sauce. This is a matter of preference so add the sauce you like but we also recommend whole canned tomatoes crushed in a mill, put some toppings and cheese on top and get ready to grill. And for gods sake, use good mozzarella cheese not the shredded mess from the frozen isle.
5. COOK IT
Your grilled pizza will cook fast, so once the smoker is ready place the pizza on the stone and close the cover. It should take about 5 min but you will be able to tell when its done as the crust will puff and split and the cheese and toppings will become a melted layer of charred nirvana. Note, if you are cooking on a charcoal grill you will need to place the pie offset from your heat.
6. EAT IT
Use a couple spatulas to remove the pizza and let it set for 30 seconds before cutting it. Now you can appreciate the easy, splendid, smokey perfection. Do this every night for the entire summer and your life will be complete.