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Bring the Italian Pizza Passion to your backyard. Here's how to turn your barbecue into a pizza oven, from toppings and timings, dough recipes, and the stone you need to do it.

Secrets to perfect pizza

With stunning natural scenery and legendary cuisine, it’s no wonder that Italy is one of the world’s premier travel destinations. While we can’t move the Colosseum from Rome or the gondoliers from Venice, there is one easy way to bring a slice of Italian life back home. Grilling a proper pizza; with its thin, crispy crust, melted cheese and mouth-watering tomatoes, will have your garden feeling like the streets of Naples. The word ‘pizza’ might date from the 10th century, but modern pizza began as cheese-topped flatbread sold in 18th century Naples. Now it has become one of the country’s most significant culinary exports, even winning over the creators of haute cuisine: the French eat around 10 kg of pizza per capita a year, which, in 2015, totaled a mind-boggling 819 million pizzas nationwide.

A easy as a pizza

The ideal cooking time and temperature is 90s at 450ºC

Pizza only requires a few ingredients, so the quality of each is paramount. The classic Neapolitan pizza is topped with mozzarella cheese, tomatoes and basil, plus olive oil and seasonings, but feel free to experiment. After all, you’re the one who’s going to eat it. Many chefs use different blends of cheese to create more nuanced tastes and textures. Ricotta will make the cheese creamier, while Asiago will add sharpness. Gruyère, Provolone and Parmesan are also popular options. Need more? Top the pizza with some meat (pepperoni, prosciutto, sausage) and veggies (onions, artichokes, kale).

For an authentic Italian crust, the Weber Gourmet BBQ System Pizza Stone is a grillmaster’s ally. The stone absorbs moisture, creating a perfectly cooked pizza that’s light and crispy without being burnt. (The stone is also great for baking bread, cookies and even potato chips.)

Our top grillmaster tips for getting the best Neapolitan pizza? In a professional restaurant the ideal cooking time for a pizza is 90 seconds at 450° C, so the higher the temperature of your grill, the better the result will be. If you use briquettes, this means a cooking time of around 8 minutes, and they'll burn for up to a couple of hours. If you use lumpwood charcoal, you can get down to 4–5 minutes for pizza, but if you're cooking lots of pizzas you may need to top up with lit briquettes to keep the temperature. If you have a gas barbecue, simply raise the burner opposite the stone to the maximum setting. Buon appetito!

Weber's Best Choice

Ingredients

  • circleServes: 4 pizzas
  • 360 ml water
  • 18–20 g salt
  • 2 g yeast
  • 620–650 g plain flour
  • 250–320 g tomato sauce
  • 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 320–400 g mozzarella or fior di latte
  • 1 tbsp oregano
  • 20 leaves of fresh basil
  • Salt, as needed
  •  
  • Special Equipment
  • Pizza Paddle
  • Pizza Stone

Instructions

  • 1. Pour the water into a mixer, dissolve the salt, add 10% of the total amount of flour and then add the yeast. Start the mixer, and then gradually add the rest of the flour until the desired dough consistency is achieved.

  • 2. Mix the dough at a low speed for 20 minutes, until the dough forms a single ball. To obtain optimum dough consistency, make sure you control the quantity of water. The mixture should be sticky, soft and elastic to the touch.

  • 3. Remove the dough from the mixer, and place it on a surface to rest for 2 hours at room temperature. Then cut the mixture into small balls or ‘panetti’, weighing between 170 and 230 g each.

  • 4. Put the panetti in a box or a tray for the second rising stage, between 4 to 6 hours.

  • 5. Prepare the barbecue for indirect high heat (280–290°C), place the GBS pizza stone into the cooking grate and preheat the pizza stone for 15–20 minutes.

  • 6. Meanwhile, season the tomato sauce with oregano and salt. Chop the mozzarella. Roll out the panetti into disks of dough ensuring the centre is no more than 4 mm thick. Spoon a quarter of the tomato sauce into the centre of each base, then in a spiralling motion, cover the base with the sauce, leaving 1 cm around the edge. Spread the mozzarella evenly over all the pizzas, before adding some basil leaves and a little extra virgin olive oil.

  • 7. Sprinkle the Pizza Paddle with a little flour to make the surface more slippery. Using the Pizza Paddle, slide the pizza onto the pizza stone and close the lid of the barbecue. Cook the pizza over indirect heat until the base is crispy.

  • All of our recipes are created by our expert chefs at the Weber Grill Academy. View more inspirational recipes or book a course at the Grill Academy now.

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