Thin-Crust Spinach & Feta Pizza

star rating (4) rate this recipe »
Recipe photo
Hands-on time:
Baking time:
Total time:
Yield: two 12" x 16" pizzas

Recipe photo

Are you a thin-crust pizza aficionado? Then this simple, versatile crust is for you. We love it as the base for a garlic-enhanced spinach and feta topping, but feel free to add your own favorites. One caveat: thin-crust pizzas do better with drier fillings, to preserve their crisp crunch. So save the fresh tomatoes and oceans of sauce for another day, and go minimalist, OK?

Thin-Crust Spinach & Feta Pizza

star rating (4) rate this recipe »
Hands-on time:
Baking time:
Total time:
Yield: two 12" x 16" pizzas
Published: 08/31/2011

Ingredients

Dough

  • 1 1/2 to 2 teaspoons instant yeast*
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon Baker's Special Dry Milk or nonfat dry milk
  • 3 1/2 cups King Arthur Italian-Style Flour
  • 3/4 cup to 3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons lukewarm water*
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • *Use the greater amount of yeast if you plan on baking the pizza right away; the lesser amount if you'll refrigerate the dough first.
  • **Use the lesser amount of water in summer or humid conditions; the greater amount in winter or under drier conditions.

Topping

  • two 10-ounce packages frozen spinach or two 16-ounce bags frozen spinach
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • big pinch of salt
  • 2 to 4 peeled, minced garlic cloves
  • 6 to 8 ounces feta cheese

Tips from our bakers

  • Looking for a little more cheese — and a neat way to anchor the spinach on the pizza? Sprinkle the crust with a thin layer of mozzarella or other pizza-type cheese before adding the spinach and feta.
  • About the spinach — why the huge variation in how much frozen (20 ounces vs. 32 ounces); and can you use fresh spinach instead? Frozen spinach usually comes two ways: in 10-ounce blocks, or 16-ounce bags. Two 10-ounce blocks is barely enough; two 16-ounce bags is plenty. Bottom line, use as much as you like. As for fresh spinach — sure, fresh is fine. But you still need to cook it and wring it dry, otherwise your crust runs the risk of becoming soggy.
  • A sprinkle of oregano atop the feta is a nice touch, as is the merest hint of ground nutmeg in the spinach.

Directions

see this recipe's blog »

1) In a medium-sized mixing bowl (or in a bread machine set on the dough/manual cycle), combine all of the ingredients to make a very soft dough. Knead for 5 to 7 minutes (or allow the dough to go through the bread machine's dough cycle); the dough will gradually become smooth and cohesive, though it'll remain quite sticky.

2) To bake pizza immediately, divide the dough in half, and let each half rest, covered, for about 15 minutes, while you preheat your oven to 450°F. To bake pizza later, transfer the dough to a lightly greased bowl. Cover the bowl, and let the dough rise for 1 hour, then refrigerate it for up to 3 days.

3) While the dough is resting or rising (or just before you're ready to bake pizza), start preheating the oven to 450°F, and prepare your toppings.

4) For spinach and feta pizza, thaw the frozen spinach, and squeeze it in your hands (or a paper towel, or a dish towel) until it's very dry.

5) Heat the olive oil, and sauté the spinach, salt, and garlic for a couple of minutes, just until hot and well combined.

6) Divide the dough in half. You'll be working with one piece of dough at a time. To make two pizzas now, set one half aside, lightly covered, while you work with the first piece. To make one pizza now, one later, return half the dough to the refrigerator, covered; use it within a day or two.

7) Lightly grease two sheets of parchment paper, waxed paper, or (last choice) plastic wrap. Lightly grease one or two large rectangular pans (half sheet pans work well), and drizzle with olive oil.

8) Sandwich the dough between the two pieces of paper, greased sides touching the dough. Roll the dough super-thin; the low protein in Italian-style flour will allow you to do this pretty easily. If the dough fights back, walk away for 10 minutes, then return and roll some more.

9) Peel the paper off one side of the crust. Place the crust, paper side up, on the prepared pan. Peel off the remaining paper.

10) Top the crust with half the spinach and half the feta. Spray lightly with olive oil spray, if you have it; this will help the feta brown a bit.

11) Bake the pizza on a lower rack of the oven for 5 minutes, to brown the bottom crust. Then move it to a middle or upper-middle rack, and continue to bake for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the top of the crust is golden and the feta is beginning to brown.

12) Remove the pizza from the oven, and transfer it to a rack immediately, so the crust stays crisp. Serve hot.

13) Repeat with the remaining half of the dough. Or return to the refrigerator, along with the remaining topping ingredients, and bake later.

Yield: 2 large thin-crust pizzas, about 8 to 10 servings total.

Reviews

1
  • star rating 02/12/2013
  • gsydlowski from KAF Community
  • Great to make on a work night. Dough was easy to work with getting it out on the pan. Crust came out nice and crispy with good flavor. I used Sir Lancelot with AP Flour and used different toppings. Bookmarked this one as one of my favorites.
  • star rating 10/16/2011
  • JenWood from KAF Community
  • I loved this. I am from Chicago, but I regard Chicago-style pizza as a novelty for the tourists. I was worried because I did this entirely by hand. I don't have a mixer or a bread maker. When I went to knead the dough, it was very smooth and not at all sticky, as indicated in the recipe. I used the maximum amount of water in the recipe. It was lovely to knead, so smooth and supple. I am loving this Italian Flour. I squeezed the thawed frozen spinach out by hand, and added some onion powder and crushed red pepper when I sauteed the ingredients. Despite my concerns about the dough, it rolled out effortlessly. I didn't have to let it rest. It didn't snap back. I put a sprinkling of shredded mozzarella to anchor the spinach. (It was very dry.) and topped it with feta. It turned out so crunchy and cracker thin. This will be my go-to pizza dough when working with "drier" toppings. I hate thicker crust pizza. I think I will out a thin layer of hummus on the bottom and add some roasted red peppers on top. Thanks, KAF.
    We defer to you....the real resource for all things pizza! So glad this recipe worked for you and that you shared your success (and concerns!) with all the customer/bakers who read these reviews! Happy Baking! Irene @ KAF
  • star rating 10/03/2011
  • Pua Moonfire from KAF Community
  • A comment: I used whole wheat pastry flour (9% gluten) instead of the Italian flour (8.5% gluten.) My spouse described the crust as "cookie-like." It was tasty but not bready. Was it the pastry flour? Also, there is no rising time listed but since I used the dough setting on my bread machine, it had a rise anyway. Was the wrong? The recipe calls for only a 15-minute rest, no rising which seemed odd for a yeast dough. I used the spinach topping with goat cheese (feta is too salty for us.) I cut the dough into four portions and froze two for future use. The second day, I was careful not to roll the dough out very much as the first try resulted in burned edges. All in all, good but not great.
    Did you substitute the whole wheat pastry flour for the entire amount of Italian flour? Generally we recommend adding an additional 1 Tablespoon of liquid per cup of whole wheat flour in a recipe. Many times substituting whole wheat flour in a recipe can change the final texture/outcome of the product. We recommend only substituting half of the flour with whole wheat flour in a recipe and seeing if you like the results before adjusting the recipe further. Because this is a thin crust pizza, there is no need to have it rise. The 15-minute rest allows the dough to rest so that you can roll it very thin. Thin crust pizzas generally are very crisp and cracker-like and have browned edges, as opposed to thicker crusts that are chewy and more pale in color. If you have any questions, please contact us at the Baker's Hotline. ~Mel @ KAF
  • star rating 09/24/2011
  • Brenda from Caibou, ME
  • It's good, but dry enough that I'll come up with a dipping sauce before making again. Tomato, garlic, & oregano sounds good.
1
bakershotline

Related recipes