How to Make Dutch Oven Pizza

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Pizza in the morning, pizza in the evening, pizza at supper time. When you know how to make pizza in a Dutch oven, you can have pizza anytime – and anywhere!

Make pizza night a new camping tradition! Learn how to make Dutch Oven Pizza while camping using just a few simple ingredients.

Sitting around a campfire with some good friends and a cooler full of beer seems like the perfect occasion for pizza. (Is there really such a thing as a not good time for pizza?) However, unlike most grillable types of camping food like burgers, brats, or kebabs, pizza is not quite as intuitive to make at a campsite. If you want pizza out in the wild, you’ll need to get a little creative.

Now everyone knows you need an oven to bake a pizza, right? Except: you don’t! But only the most well-heeled RVers bring a traditional convection oven with them out into the woods. For the rest of us, there’s the far more practical and affordable Dutch oven option. This cast iron cooking vessel allows you to stack coals or embers underneath and on top of it, producing omnidirectional heat inside. The effect is very similar to an oven. Dutch ovens have been used for hundreds of years and are tremendously versatile. They are also perfect for making pizzas.

So on your next camping trip, take your camp chef skills to the next level by making Dutch oven pizza. We’ve outlined everything you need to know to get started below.

EQUIPMENT NOTES | INGREDIENT NOTES | TOPPING COMBOS | STEP BY STEP RECIPE

Equipment You Need to Make Dutch Oven Pizza

Dutch Oven There are lots of different kinds of Dutch ovens, but you’ll need the type specifically designed for cooking on a campfire. A camping Dutch oven has legs on the bottom (so you can place coals underneath it) and a lid with a rim (so you can place coals on top of it). They come in all different sized diameters depending on how large you want your pizza.

Chimney Starter While not necessary, a chimney starter can help get your charcoal briquettes ready to go faster. This one is pretty cool as it packs flat for easy storage!

Parchment Paper The deep walls of a Dutch oven can often make it difficult to get a spatula inside to retrieve your pizza. Parchment paper not only gives you something to lift the pizza out with, but it also keeps your Dutch oven nice and clean. (So you can reload and make another pizza!) You can use a roll of parchment paper from the grocery store and cut the sheets to the right size, or Lodge sells circular sheets meant specifically for Dutch ovens.

Metal Skewers We placed metal skewers underneath our lid to create a gap that allows steam to escape. If you like crispy, crunchy pizza, then steam is the enemy. You want the heat inside the Dutch oven to be as dry as possible. If the lid sits snuggly, then all the moisture released from the dough, cheese, sauce, and toppings gets trapped inside and will result in a wet, soggy pizza. So it’s important to create a small gap to allow for proper venting. You could also roll up some foil to create spacers if you don’t have metal skewers on hand.

Tongs If you’re using coals as your heat source, you’re going to have to jockey them around with something. We have a pair of metal tongs that we use to shuttle the appropriate number of coals into position.

Heat Resistant Gloves / Lid Lifter Once your Dutch oven is up to temperature, the whole thing is going to be extremely hot (including the lid). They make dedicated lid lifters so you can safely remove the lid, but we prefer to use heat resistant gloves. They are much more versatile and multifunctional that the standard cast iron lid lifter. (No gloves and no lid lifter? We’ve seen people lift the lid with the rip claw on the back of a metal hammer.)

Ingredient Notes

Pizza Dough Whether you’re a novice or an expert, you have a lot of options in pizza dough. The most basic approach is to buy a roll of Pillsbury pizza dough. Moving up from there many grocery stores sell pre-made dough (we get our dough from Trader Joe’s). And then for the true purist, you can also make your own pizza dough. Here is our favorite quick 30-minute pizza dough recipe.

Cornmeal A little bit of cornmeal can go a long way to improving the crust of your pizza. Sprinkle a little bit down on the parchment paper before you place your rolled out down on it. Not only will the cornmeal give your crust a subtle crunch, but it will ensure you pizza doesn’t stick to the parchment paper.

Low Moisture Everything We’ve said it once, we’ll say it again, you want to reduce the potential for steam as much as possible. Sauce is inherently, well… saucy, so your best bet is to use as little as you can get away with. As for the cheese, many grocery stores sell specifically labeled low-moisture mozzarella – both fresh and pre-shredded. And finally, you’ll want to steer clear of liquid packed toppings (like fresh zucchini). Below we have some creative pizza topping ideas for you to try if you’re bored of the basic pepperoni & cheese!

Make pizza night a new camping tradition! Learn how to make Dutch Oven Pizza while camping using just a few simple ingredients.

Dutch Oven Pizza Topping Ideas

Mozzarella + Mushrooms + Bell Peppers + Black Olives + Tomato Sauce

Feta + Artichoke Hearts + Kalamata Olives + Sun Dried Tomatoes + Oregano + Olive Oil

Mozzarella + Cherry Tomatoes + Pesto

Blue Cheese + Bacon + Dates + Arugula + Tomato Sauce

Mozzarella + Chicken + Red Onions + Cilantro + BBQ Sauce

Manchego + Roasted Red Peppers + Chorizo + Tomato Sauce

Mozzarella + Sauteed Bell Peppers, Fennel, and Onions + Crumbled Sausage + Tomato Sauce

Goat Cheese + Grilled Peaches + Prosciutto + Fresh Basil + Olive Oil

Mozzarella + Sliced Tomatoes + Fresh Basil + Tomato Sauce

Ricotta + Prosciutto + Spinach + Tomato Sauce

Mozzarella + Pineapple + Ham + Tomato Sauce

Monterey Jack + Poblanos + Roasted Corn + Onions + Cilantro + Salsa or el Pato Tomato Sauce

Have a favorite pizza combination that you think we should include? Let us know down in the comments!

How to Make Dutch Oven Pizza

Make pizza night a new camping tradition! Learn how to make Dutch Oven Pizza while camping using just a few simple ingredients.

Dutch Oven Pizza

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Makes: 1 10" or 12" pizza
Author: Fresh Off the Grid

Here are the basic instructions for how to make pizza in a Dutch oven. Use whatever combination of cheese, sauce, vegetables, and proteins strike your fancy!

PRINT RECIPE

Ingredients

  • 8-10 oz pizza dough (8 oz for 10", 10 oz for 12")
  • 1 tablespoons each flour + cornmeal
  • Toppings of choice

Instructions

  1. PREPARE YOUR COALS: Start by preparing your coals or charcoal briquettes. You’ll need about 30 for a 10” Dutch oven, or 33 for a 12” Dutch oven. Once the coals/briquettes are ready, preheat your Dutch oven to 450. For a 10” oven, place 10 coals under the oven and 20 on the lid. For a 12” oven, place 11 coals under the oven and 22 on the lid.
  2. PREPARE THE DOUGH: In the meantime, roll out your dough. Dust a cutting board with flour and using a water bottle or bottle of wine (who brings a rolling pin camping?), roll the dough into a circle. Dust the cornmeal onto a piece of parchment and transfer the dough to the parchment paper. Dock the dough all over with a fork (this will prevent the dough from bubbling up while baking).
  3. TOP: Add whatever toppings you wish. See our suggestions here.
  4. BAKE THE PIZZA: Carefully remove the Dutch oven from the coals and remove the lid. Place the pizza, parchment paper and all, into the Dutch oven, lay the spacers across the top, cover, and return to the bed of coals. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until the crust is golden.
  5. SERVE & ENJOY!

EQUIPMENT NEEDED

10” or 12” Dutch oven
Coals or charcoal briquettes
Tongs
Lid lifter
Cutting board
Dutch oven liners or parchment paper
Fork
Metal skewers

Make pizza night a new camping tradition! Learn how to make Dutch Oven Pizza while camping using just a few simple ingredients.


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10 Comments

  1. I’m going to try this over the weekend! Thanks for providing a practical pizza recipe with east instructions for the Dutch oven.

  2. I tried this last weekend and it turned out great. I am doI got this at our church girls camp this week. Our girls are excited to have pizza while camping. Thank you for making this post and easy to understand.

  3. I wish you guys would drive around the country visiting people like me and helping us pack our cars for our first off the grid car trip! Visit me first!!

  4. I've been making pizza in my Dutch oven for years. Never thought of metal skewers to release steam. Making pizza tomorrow and I can't wait to see the results.

  5. this is very great information.I would really loved it.

  6. it is Very Interesting Article.Pizza is my Favourite Dish.Thanks For This.

  7. I Want to Learn How To make Pizza.This is very Helpful Article For me.Thanks For Sharing.

  8. I would never ever think of making a pizza in a dutch oven but this looks incredible. And thanks for the topping ideas.

    I'm vegan so, obviously, no cheese but with a vegan substitute this is going to be dinner tonight. Just hope mine turns out as good as yours looks!!

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