Pizza on the Grill [Recipes]

2010 Jul 7
Anything special I have to consider for this?

I was just going to make something up :-)

Toss the dough in my large cast iron fying pan, apply toppings, and put it on the grill for 15 minutes or so.

2010 Jul 7
Just throw it straight on the grill! You get this smokey flavour that's pretty killer.

2010 Jul 7
Watch for uneven heat. I heat a pizza stone up with a smoker pouch and rotate the stone seems to work pretty good.

2010 Jul 7
I do mine right on the grill, no issues with uneven heat.

Crank all burners on high for as long as you can to preheat. The hotter the oven area, the better (to get good melting before the dough gets too crisp).

I also brush the grill side of my dough with a little garlic laced evoo.

My fave is to grill up some chicken and red onions first. Dice, then layer dough with spinach, mozza, chicken, onions... dust with parmesan. No sauce necessary.

Tomatoes, mozza, grilled peppers and hot italian sausages work well too.

I should have mentioned... it goes smoother if you precook some of the bulkier items....

2010 Jul 7
we make this all the time. just have cheese & toppings ready. throw dough right on the grill, it takes a couple minutes to cook the first side, flip it, put on your toppings, turn low and cover. i only do veggie, so no idea about how adding meat would work. i would assume to precook. it cooks really quickly and is delicious!

2010 Jul 7
I use a very similar technique to HFF (i.e. dough straight on the grill and give the topping side a grill first).

For a sauce I use Farm Boy fresh salsa (I love their salsa!). It can be a bit sloppy, so I usually drain some in a sieve first which also concentrates the flavour*. Makes for a really fresh tasting summery pizza.

Then I normally throw on prosciutto strips, pickled eggplant and chunks of torn up mozza. Then rip a few basil leaves and drizzle with olive oil ... yum.
Even better if you put the smoker box in the BBQ as well.

* This is a really good use for extra salsa. I freeze it if there is any leftover. When defrosted it is quite mushy and watery, so it's not great for your fajitas ... but sieve it and stick it on a pizza and it's perfect.

2010 Jul 7
Some great ideas, I would love to try making pizza on the grill. However, I've attempted to make my own pizza several times and each time it was an absolute failure. Basically, I am absolutely unable to spread out the pizza dough, Ive tried store bought, Metro and Luciano's as well as homemade, each time disaster!

2010 Jul 7

If you like a thinner crust pizza & want a no-fail dough recipe, try this:

It's really yummy and very easy. :) When I've made it, I've used a rolling pin to roll it out.


2010 Jul 8
yan - i used to have that problem. now my technique is to make dough and stick in fridge overnight. bring to room temp @ 2 hours before using. it is very easy to roll then. if it starts seizing up, let it rest 10 minutes. if you are having troubles, i think the dough may be too cold.

i've posted my pizza dough recipe on the forum before. i think under chicago deep-dish. it is my go to recipe.

2010 Jul 8
OK, it is working well on my cast iron griddle (rectangular)

Except for one thing - need to have the grill on low otherwise the crust gets burned pretty badly even after only a few 10s of seconds. I did the pre-cook thing that HFF mentioned, and it looks like the way to go in general. But had the grill on too high. Even medium was too high.

But pre-cooking it makes it a lot easier to manage. I throw it on the griddle for 40 or 50 seconds, then flip it. I'll do a video next time around.

2010 Jul 8
any idea what the temp is of your cast iron griddle? why don't you do one of your experiments and try it just on the grill? it doesn't burn for me. the other thing i have tried is using my flat veggie pan. it is thin metal, with holes perforated through it. i oil it, preheat it, then put the dough on it.

i just have a cheap propane bbq, so it doesn't get super hot.

2010 Jul 8
I've been experimenting with my Weber kettle charcoal grill lately, will have to give this a go sometime... Besides, it's too damned hot to turn my oven on these days, this sounds like a good solution.

2010 Jul 8
I'm going to have to try out my new bbq thermometer and see how hot it gets in there - not really sure. My grill surface does not really exist so I have to use the griddles. Well, they do exist but they are very deteriorated cast iron that I'm afraid would cause a lot of bits and pieces to get stuck into the dough (or anything else I'd cook there). This was a free grill that I rescued.

I think the griddles will work well next time I do it - just need to be careful to preheat on low instead of medium or high.

2010 Aug 9
I've put a few pizzas on the last few days - some pics to follow shortly of the tandoori pizza I did this evening which was a big hit with everyone in the family!

2010 Aug 10
Tandoori toppings? Or cooked Tandoori style? I ask because I have a naan recipe and am struggling to simulte a tandoor. I figure that you probably don't have a tandoor in the backyard, but you come up with some fun guerilla gear :)

2010 Aug 10
Just the toppings - not cooked by that style. Details to follow

2010 Aug 10
Snoopy, I made a batch of naan a few weeks ago in the oven....using a pizza stone, turned out quite well!!
Also make pizza on the grill quite often using pizza stones....trick is not to make them too hot, and to rotate the pizza a few times in case the heat is a bit uneven :)

2010 Aug 10
Thanks. I'll have to try that!

2010 Aug 10
Last month's bbq'd sesame naan, just terrific with an Indian flavoured hummus, Bombay Hummus, from the rebar restaurant cookbook.

2010 Aug 10
Sorry, just not finding the time in my busy days of unemployment to do all the things that need getting done - not sure where I ever found the time to work.

Anyway, here is the pizza. You can see it looks pretty much like a normal pizza. I spread the dough out into a cold 12" cast iron frying pan first, and then dressed up the pizza in there. Which I realise is not how some people do the on the grill thing.

For the tandoori side of things, my wife made tandoori pork and tandoori chicken a few weeks ago. In both cases there was a lot of tandoori sauce left in the pan, and even when I'm not unemployed I look at that and thing "why would someone in their right mind throw out all that flavour?" So I collected it up, boiled it in a mason jar in the MW, inverted the jar, and let it cool. Then into the fridge. Will keep fine for a couple months that way. Anyway, I was throwing the pizza together and on a whim thought of the tandoori sauce in the fridge - BAM! I mixed it about 50/50 with my home made pizza sauce.

And a legend was born :-)

As for the grilling, I know that the standard way seems to be really insanely high heat for 3 or 4 minutes, but I took the opposite approach and am very pleased with the results. I had the middle burner on low and the other 2 burners off. Put the pan into the grill on top of my 2 cast iron griddles, and closed it down. Cooked for 20 minutes and it was perfect. And in fact the crust was far better than any oven pizza I've done in recent history - thin crust but very capable of supporting its own weight if you know what I mean.

I will definitely do this more often - either as regular pizza, or tandoori. My wife liked the tandoori so much, we are going to do up a special batch of tandoori tomato sauce!

2010 Aug 10
Tandoori pork: so wrong, and yet so right.

2010 Nov 19
part of a pie i cooked the other night - i love cooking pizza on the bbq. tempermental though - i have to play with the heat like a piano! :)

Anyone else cook their pizza on the bbq? what brand pan do you use - i have a feeling the pan is my biggest issue.

2010 Nov 19
i cook directly on the bbq, no pan. it looks like the heat was really high on your bbq. if you are having problems, you can cook it in indirect heat, heat it up, then turn off the burners on one side.

we love pizza on the bbq.

2010 Nov 19
I like a really crunchy crust, so yes - it was high. :) also, when using the pan, i have to give direct heat and then switch to indirect after about 4 minutes. otherwise i get an undercooked bottom.

Maybe I should ditch the pan.. hrmm. No issues with overcooking the bottom doing that?

2010 Nov 19
For grilling pizze, I've heard of (and used) the approach of cooking the crust on one side, then flipping it and adding toppings to the already-partly-cooked side (as hipfunkyfun described on 2010-Jul-7). That's about the only way to cook over direct heat (i.e. grilling) and get the crust cooked through without burning it.

The ultimate way is to use an actual pizza stone, as recommended by Iluvfood on 2010-Aug-10. Get it nice and hot, then put the pre-assembled pizza on it and close the lid. This approximates an actual pizza oven very well. I've used this method on my Big Green Egg with great results! Wifey isn't a huge fan of the faint smokey flavour that results, which is the only reason we don't make it often.

2010 Nov 19
Pizza stone - that's what I need. I don't like the idea of throwing the dough right on the grill.

I've spoken with a few people about pizza stones and for the most part they complain about them always breaking because they're too thin.

Does anyone have a recommedation for a solid unit?

2010 Nov 19
kitchen virtue - why not directly on the grill? just try it before you say no to it completely. it is easy, dough doesn't fall through the grates, no dishes to clean after, the grill is hot and you get beautiful grill marks on the crust.

2010 Nov 20
I'll give it a try. I just worry it will cook too fast. I promise to take pictures!

2010 Nov 20
That's why I use my cast iron pans and griddles - it behaves like a pizza stone but is not really very fragile.

2010 Nov 20
hipfunkyfun, I've tried pizza directly on the grill and it just doesn't work for me:

* Thin crust - the dough can't support much weight, causing it to sag unless there are no toppings at first.
* Thick crust - the dough burns before cooking through, necessitating flipping.

Thus, both crusts require sauce and toppings to be applied after the dough is partly cooked, meaning you're messing around with applying toppings (with the lid open) when the dough should be baking.
Since toppings have less cook time, they may need to be pre-cooked. Less tasty and more work.

If I absolutely had to grill pizza without a pan or stone, I would do the following:

* Use indirect heat to avoid burning the bottom before the pizza is done.
* Make sure the crust isn't too thick and cook it briefly (covered of course) before applying toppings.
* Use a tiny amount of sauce and scant toppings -- avoiding any (e.g. bacon) that need to cook.

This can work if your ideal pizza involves little sauce and things like canned artichokes, pre-cooked chicken, feta cheese, etc. However, if you like a more gooey pie, with browned mozzarella and crispy bacon then you need that stone or pan! :-)

2010 Nov 20
I definitely do not want to put toppings on while/after dough is cooking. Doesn't seem proper to me - I want my toppings/cheese to cook with the dough.

2010 Nov 21
I too have tried directly on the grill and it didn't work for me as I prefer thin crust and dislike adding toppings part way.

This year we geeked out a bit and try a bunch of different methods and types of tomato sauce made with San Marzano Tomatoes. One batch was BBQ/smoked tomatoes, milled then reduced. The sauce was more savory and less sweet with a slightly smoked flavour.

I ended up making a veggie lasagna with a jar of BBQ/smoked tomatoes and it had an almost meaty type of quality to it. I would have sworn there was some sort of finely milled or skimmed out meat product. I definitely would do it again.

Pizza with the BBQ/smoked tomatoes gives a bit of an illusion that the pizza was grilled and adds a bit of meatiness to it (had to reassure a vegetarian). Now I use the smoked sauce but I make it in the oven on our stone. I roll out the dough, place it onto parchment, add all my ingredients, slide it and the parchment onto a one sided baking tray then bring it to the oven and slide it off onto the stone. A minute or so into making I remove the paper. It is an unnecessary step but it makes the paper last longer and I use it for the next round of pizza while the first cooks. When done I slide it out onto a wire rack and or onto a cutting board to serve.

Our stone is a piece of granite that was cut to fit our oven minus an inch or so for air circulation on all sides. It takes a while to heat up but once it does, you get a nice crispy crusted pizza that cooks quickly. You can make it any size and shape as you don't have to make it fit on a standard tiny pizza stone and as a bonus, it helps keep the temperature of the oven when opening the door. We just leave it in the oven. Previous to this we bought four unglazed Terra cotta tiles and took them out when the oven cooled.

If you're interested in checking it out I would be willing to host a pizza night.

2010 Nov 21
Ah, the smoked tomato are so right live4food. It's sheer heaven. We smoke plum tomatoes on a Big Green Egg every fall and grind it up for fantastic sauce. Other favourite pizza toppings include:

- Nicastro's candied garlic
- Nicastro's fontina (melts beautifully and tastes creamier than standard issue mozzarella)
- blue cheese (especially paired with the candied garlic and leftover bits of steak)
- BBQ sauce for extra zing and heat
- caramelized onions
- duck confit (Saslov's version is great and cheaper than others)

And since this year we are trying a variety of local sausages, will look forward to having elk sausage on a pizza.

2010 Nov 21
Pizza on the bbq has been a qualified success for me but I find the stove way more convenient and predictable - more bbq'd pizza would make it more predictable no doubt.
It's the smokin' tomatoes that prompts a posting - never done that but sounds awfully good! Gotta try that. I tried smoking my grilled tomatillo salsa this fall (tomatillos, onions, jalapenos, garlic) and was astonished at how much better it was, and can almost imagine the flavour of smoked tomatoes. Now the thought crosses my mind to use some of the smoked grilled salsa in my freezer for a Mexican pizza. Thanks for the inspiration live4food and arugula!
I must have made 20 batches of salsa and froze maybe 3/4's of them - the last 4, made with the very last 5 lb of fresh tomatillos last weekend, were what I had planned to take to the potluck had I gone but I was sick as a dog.

2010 Nov 23
I love making pizza! I use both the BBQ to cook my dough and the oven broiler to heat/brown the pizza.

First, I get all my ingredients ready. Shred cheese, open the bag of pepperoni, dice ham, etc. Anything that needs to be cooked up comes next: caramelized onions, chicken and sausage. I also quickly pre-cook the peppers and mushrooms until softened.

I heat up the BBQ to the max and turn the oven broiler on. I hand stretch my dough and fit it onto one of these non-stick pizza trays with the perforations. I put the tray in the BBQ on direct heat (I turn down the heat so the flames don't lick the bottom) and let it cook for 1 - 2 minutes. The bottom (which you can see through the perforations) should have a nice tan colour to it.

Bring it inside, put all your toppings on and put it in the broiler until the cheese melts and browns.

That's it. Perfect, crisp crust and nice, melt-y toppings.

2012 Jan 2
I made a fantastic pizza the other day on the Big Green Egg, but the pizza stone is too small and I want to make bigger pies. The stone that came with the egg is actually a bit smaller than the one I already had, and even that one is too small a diameter. I'm looking for something about 16 inch which would leave an inch all around on the large BGE

Anyone know where to get one that size?

2012 Jul 28
I tried pizza for the first time tonight on the Egg. Beginner's luck and it turned out great. I bought most of my ingredients in Montreal but the key one I was excited to try was inspired by a pizza from Libretto in Toronto; nduja sausage.

I bought the dough (I know but it was an Italian store!) and rolled it out into 8 " rounds. I smothered it with Derek Damman's Basic Tomato sauce ( I think you need to crush the fennel seeds) ( and you need to like fennel), teaspoons of nduja dollopped around evenly, and topped with grated mozzarella. I then cooked them for 6 minutes on the Egg at 550F on a pizza stone, on top of the grill, on top of the place setter, legs up. The crust was cooked but not blistered, the edges were brown, and the cheese was melted but not browned.

I'll probably save pizza making when entertaining the masses because it's all prep and very little cooking time.

2012 Jul 29
Zymurgist, my girlfriend got her 16" pizza stone at Zellers

2012 Aug 2
I tried making pizza from scratch in the oven once, many years ago. The results were not encouraging. I have better pans now, and a better idea about dough, and many tricks in this thread, maybe I should try again. The dough was rolled with a pin, as spinning it makes a big floury mess and I have a tiny kitchen. I should get better results than the Millenium Falcon Pizza...

2012 Aug 3
I think I may have mentioned it in another thread, but for ppl looking for a pizza stone (particularly for BGE and similar cookers), I'd recommend going to the Capital Pottery Supplies and Studio.

You can get round and square kiln shelves for really reasonable pricing (I think I paid $25?) for a round 15.5" stone. It's 5/8" thick, which is much stronger than consumer-grade pizza stones and won't fracture when you lay your pizza dough down (which my first kitchen stone did).

They're heavy, but super strong. Made out of cordierite, which is what high-end baking stones are made of, we've been more than happy with ours.

2012 Aug 3
Has anyone ever tried cooking a pizza on a himalayan salt block par chance?