The BEST Gluten Free Pan Pizza

This is hands down the BEST gluten free pan pizza you will ever have! Just like the thick crust almost-fried-on-the-bottom pan pizza we used to get back in our days of delivery!!

gluten free pan pizza

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Ya’ll are not gonna be-LIEVE how good this pizza is!!!! It seriously took me back to a time when I was able to order delivery pizzas from Pizza Hut. Back when everything was so much simpler, especially when I just.didn’t.feel.like.cooking.dinner! Am I right?

As much as I love to cook and bake, there will always be times when I wish someone would make ME dinner! I hope someday the city I live in will be more gluten free friendly, but for now I have to cook all my own meals. At least if they taste like this pizza, I can totally deal 🙂

How Do I Make Gluten Free Pan Pizza?

When I first made my gluten free focaccia bread and it came out beautifully, I had an immediate hunch that it would also work perfectly as the crust for a pan pizza. And that hunch was spot on!!

It all begins with my gluten free English muffin dough. It’s so easy to mix up in the morning and be ready to go for dinnertime. Half of the dough will fill a 12-inch cast iron skillet. You can also use the whole recipe and fill two skillets. Or you can use a large baking sheet (17 by 11 inch) and make one large rectangular pizza.

  • Pour olive oil into a cast iron skillet (or pan as above) and dump the dough right on top. Add a little more oil on top of the dough and, using your fingers, spread the dough to the edges of the pan. It’s fine if there are holes in the dough as they’ll fill in when the dough rises and bakes.
  • Cover the skillet with a tight-fitting lid or plastic wrap and allow the dough to rise for about 30 minutes. You won’t be looking for the dough to double in size, just be slightly puffed.
  • While the dough is rising, preheat your oven to 450 degrees.
  • If using a skillet, this is optional but I like to place it over medium-low heat just to get the crust started before putting it in the oven. Carefully add the sauce so you don’t deflate the dough (try my Pizza Hut copycat sauce recipe!). If you’re using a baking sheet, just add the sauce without heating on the stove.
  • Then add the cheese and any other toppings of your choice.
  • Bake for about 16-20 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly and charred in spots.
gluten free pan pizza

The Case for White American Cheese

Ya’ll. Lemme convince you to use white American cheese instead of mozzarella on this pizza. I know it sounds TOTALLY weird, but trust me on this, please!!

Scott is from Scranton, PA and his favorite pizza place is a little neighborhood pizzeria called Maroni’s. Every time we visit, someone always orders Maroni’s Sicilian-style pizza for Scott because he misses it constantly. This is a thick crust pizza that’s covered with white American cheese and NOT mozzarella.

I tasted Maroni’s pizza years ago (BC) and was blown away by the creaminess of the cheesy topping. It was like nothing I’ve ever tasted on a pizza. I loved it so much, I now use it at home all the time on my pan pizza.

Maroni’s uses shredded white American cheese, but I can’t seem to find shredded in my area. So I just use slices of white American that I get from the deli counter at my local grocery store.

If you get a chance to try white American, please let me know what you think! I’m sure you’ll see what Scott’s family has known for a long time–it’s AMAZING on a pizza, especially this one!!

gluten free pan pizza

Make this pizza tonight for dinner! Your whole family will love it, even the gluten eaters 🙂

gluten free pan pizza

The BEST Gluten Free Pan Pizza

Remember the thick crust almost-fried-on-the-bottom pan pizza we used to get back in our gluten eating days? This is the absolute BEST gluten free pan pizza you will ever have and tastes just like that!!!  
Print Recipe
CourseMain Course
CuisineAmerican
Keywordgluten free pan pizza
Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Total Time50 minutes
Servings12 slices
AuthorKim

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Make dough as instructed through step 2, allowing it to rise for roughly 2 hours. You may refrigerate it until you're ready to make your pizza, but it's not absolutely necessary.  
  • Pour most of the olive oil into the bottom of a cast iron skillet.  Dump the dough into the skillet and add the rest of the olive oil on top.  Using your fingers, gently spread the dough out to the edges of the pan.  It's okay if the dough is dimpled from your fingers.  
  • Cover with a tight-fitting lid or plastic wrap and allow to rise for about 30 minutes while preheating the oven to 450° F.  
  • This is totally optional, but I like to get the crust started on the stove top so it creates a crispier crust (and it seems to stick less). Place it over a medium low flame for about 2-3 minutes while carefully adding the sauce and cheese before removing it from the flame. Bake for about 15-20 minutes, or until cheese is melted and bubbly, charred in spots.  The baking time will depend on your skillet size and your oven, so begin checking at 15 minutes, but it may take as long as 30.
  • Allow to cool slightly before cutting and serving.  

Notes

To reheat leftover pizza (if you’re lucky enough to have leftovers), preheat skillet over medium-low heat and place slices in skillet.  Cover with a lid and allow to heat through, about 5-10 minutes.  You can also reheat slices in the oven on a baking steel or stone at a temp of about 350 for 10 minutes.  
***DISCLAIMER:  The reason I created my own flour blends is because I could not obtain the results I wanted with flour blends that were available in stores, online, or from other gluten free bloggers.  My recipes have been developed to be used with my own bread flour blend that I created after painstakingly testing for, in some cases, YEARS to develop what I believe to be a superior gluten free bread like no other.  If you do not use my gluten free bread flour blend for this recipe, I cannot speak for the results you will obtain.    While store bought blends may give you a satisfactory result, they may NOT give you the results intended in my recipe. 



31 thoughts on “The BEST Gluten Free Pan Pizza”

  • Hi, I like this recipe! Unfortunately, the center comes out pretty doughey, though. What size pan do you use? Maybe I’m using the wrong size. Thanks!

    • I’m so sorry yours came out doughy! I should have put the pan size I use. I use a 12-inch cast iron skillet, but here is another suggestion. Start it out on a medium low stove top with a lid on it, just the dough (no sauce or toppings) for just a few minutes. What the lid would do is kind of create an oven, allowing it to “bake” sans toppings and hopefully prevent it from being too doughy.

      Please let me know how if you try it and how it turns out 🙂

  • YUM!!!!!! So good – airy bready yeasty soft gluten free pizza! Tastes great even compared to a gluten filled pizza. Definitely worth the wait of 6 to 8 hr rise time:) Maybe I own a smaller cast iron skillet, but I found I only need a quarter of the English muffin dough per pizza. Thank you for another astounding recipe!

    • Thank you, Mars!! I should have specified what size cast iron skillet. I think mine is a 10 inch, but I’m not sure. Now you can make something else with the leftover dough 🙂

  • Goose bump inducing deliciousness. I have made this several times and it comes out delicious every time. For some perspective, My husband and I met at Domino’s Pizza in the 80’s and went on to become franchisees in the 90’s. Ending up GF from Celiac in 2014 has turned my world upside down.
    The first couple of times I used half the dough recipe for one pizza. After that, I was scrimping on the dough to stretch it out and actually liked a quarter of the recipe a little better. I use a 10” cast iron skillet and bake it for about 20 minutes. I live in the mountains of Virginia, just in case altitude matters.

    • I love the “goose bump inducing deliciousness” description, haha! That is awesome!! We all (my husband, son, and I) usually have something just as pleasantly descriptive to say every time I make this pizza.

      Thanks for the high altitude tips. I will keep them in mind if anyone else asks. I also live in Virginia, but at the beach. I hope you and your family are doing well through this current crisis.

  • Update: I made this again tonight and tried the step of putting the skillet on the stove top while putting the toppings on. Terrible idea. The bottom burnt and the middle is doughy. I did not have that problem the other times I’ve made it. So I will go back to the other way…skipping the stove top step. Still a great recipe though!

    • Oh no! That’s a total bummer!! I wonder why it works so well on my stovetop and not yours (although maybe it’s the high altitude thing?) I found if I didn’t start it on low on the stove, it would be doughy when I took it out of the oven.

  • So this AH-MAZING #glutenfree #panpizza happened tonight
    .
    ❤️🍕❤️
    .
    Thank you @letthemeatglutenfreecake for your amazing #glutenfreeflour blends and #glutenfreerecipes

    —————————-

    Typical of me, I didn’t read through all of the instructions BEFORE setting out to make this recipe. Once I saw that this was recommended with Kim’s GF English Muffin dough recipe, my heart sank. I had made the GF Artisan Bread dough two days prior (the bread was wonderful!) and wanted to use the remaining dough I left “fermenting” in the frig for tonight’s pizza crust. 🤦🏻‍♀️

    Well I decided to forge ahead with her pan pizza recipe and hope that this dough worked out somewhat “edibly”and it turned out perfectly for our tastebuds. I think it may have been thinner than what the original recipe suggests but that helped it get nice and crispy on the bottom (with a touch of bite in the center) the way we like it.

    Kim, you have earned QUEEN STATUS in our house this week! Thank you for sharing your beloved recipes and wisdom with all of us!

    • Hi, Peggy! Unfortunately, I have no idea what the carb count is. The nutrition information is an extra cost for me on the recipe plugin. I think there might be online tools you can use to find out, by putting in the recipe information. Sorry, Peggy 🙁

  • Made your cinnamon rolls recipe this morning after refrigerating the dough overnight. First cinnamon rolls I have been able to eat in 10 years & it was soooo good!! Now I am copying lots of your recipes to try. I made lots of yeast breads breads prior to Celiac but after so many flops gave it up. Staying at home with less gluten free available in my online / pickup grocery shopping decided to try baking more once again. Thanks for the great recipes, confidence builder, and a very happy boost in these difficult times!! You have made my Holiday weekend great & my hubby says Thanks too.

  • The pan pizza was dinner tonight. It was so good that I burst into tears. Seriously. Finally, a gluten-free pizza that doesn’t feel like a punishment!! Thank you for this wonderful recipe! I can’t wait to try your other recipes!

  • Another perfect recipe!! I am an experienced GF baker and this has probably been my favourite pizza crust I’ve made, and I don’t even usually love pan pizzas! Crispy bottom, fluffy middles- SO good. FYI, instead of using a cast iron skillet I used a 1/4 sheet pan, baked for 23 minutes, and it came out perfect. Thanks so much for sharing your amazing recipes, Kim!

  • Instructions here are SOO CLOSE to the mark.
    Since the dough is more like a batter, you should give it time to bake by itself before topping (in lieu of the stovetop suggestion). Also, using cast irons means longer retained heat, but also slower up to temperature times, meaning you should preheat the cast iron before pouring in the batter. I did 7 minutes of dough alone, take out to add toppings, finish for 10 min. I did use a sheet tray so this may be an added variable, but it was still soggy in the middle. The upside was that I finished the bottom of underdone slices in a stovetop skillet and got an insanely nice crisp on the bottom. The crux here is that the hydration point is so high that as long as you are in the 17-23 min range of total bake time, you don’t need to worry about burning the bottom, and will basically always be erring on the side of soggy. Also, 10 min was just about the perfect amount of time for toppings to get golden brown.
    *I know a lot of ppl are keen on this already, but throwing extra cast irons you have laying around in the oven while preheating and baking is a great way to retain high heat.
    **Also small critique on the batter. If you use milk straight out of the fridge, it takes a lot longer for the yeast to get active. Bring it up to room temp/lukewarm to save time.
    K thanks for the recipe, Kim.

  • My husband and I just finished enjoying my first attempt at your recipe. it was AMAZING. I followed the recipe directions to the T including the initial about 3 to 4 minute pan fry over medium heat. (On a gas stove top) I did bake the crust for 10 minutes without toppings following the 30 minute final proof in a 12 inch cast iron skillet. After adding the sauce and cheese I baked for another 10 minutes or so. The crust had perfect texture and chew with perfect air pockets that you would expect to see in a thick crust pizza. For those wondering about the size of the skillet the 12 inch skillet is the right size. It’s the best pizza we’ve had since my husband was diagnosed with celiac disease 18 years ago. Thank you!!!

  • This is something my family begs for and I’m the only celiac/GF person in the house. Tonight I made the full batch and I’m going to attempt some Pizza Hut copycat breadsticks too. Thank you for always having the best recipes!!

  • Been experimenting with a few GF pizza doughs and this one is AMAZING! Shout out to the flour mix! 2 questions though: 1. is it supposed to be the stickiest substance known to man? Even if I cover my hands in oil it sticks to me and instead of spreading it across the pan it just comes off onto my fingers.
    2. It seems to rise and puff a lot for me as I heat the pan pre-oven. This coupled with the aforementioned stickiness has lead to a little too thick and breast of crusts. I am using active yeast instead of instant and blooming it in water (factored into amount of milk I use) could this be why? Again LOVE this recipe thank you!

    • Hmmmm. It IS supposed to be rather sticky (did you watch the video?) but if I pour olive oil over it, it doesn’t stick to my fingers and instead spreads in the pan. I think it depends on the size of your skillet as to how thick the crust will be (mine is a 12-inch cast iron skillet). If you have a smaller skillet, it may be too bready so I would either use a larger skillet or not dump the entire amount of dough into your skillet.

      As far as the super stickiness, did you substitute anything within the flour blend itself? Sometimes substitutions can cause less than great results. That’s where I’d start first in figuring out your dilemma.

  • I tried this yesterday and it was incredible!! Thank you so much for the recipe! I made focaccia for the family and a pan pizza for me 😉 it was absolutely delicious!!!

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