Grilled Pizza Dough Sandwiches aren’t just glorified grilled cheeses! They’re made with easy homemade dough and filled with all the classic pizza ingredients. It’s a fun twist on pizza!
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Why Not Just Make Pizza?
Because these are super fun! And, I love sandwiches! There are a couple more reasons, though…
First, our latest read in the Cozy Mystery Cooking Club was A Slice of Murder by Chris Cavender. (Get it? Slice, as in pizza?) But, when I tried to come up with a book inspired recipe, my pizzas were just kind of…meh.
Then, as luck would have it, Netflix premieres Chef’s Table: Pizza. In the first episode, pizza genius Chris Bianco fires up mini rounds of dough. He then splits them and turns them into sandwiches. Inspiration strikes.
Um…I so want to try THAT!
Gather Your Ingredients
You can use store bought pizza dough (the kind that comes in bags near the deli), but this homemade dough is so easy and fun to play with (and perfect for making Bratwurst Stuffed Pretzel Bites, too!). I highly recommend making it yourself! After a few minutes on the grill, you have a crispy exterior, tender interior and that chewy texture that pizza dough is famous for.
- Bread flour — it’s higher in protein and gluten than all purpose flour, giving the dough great structure for shaping. It’ll also give your cooked dough a lovely chewy texture.
- Active dry yeast — one packet. I recommend Red Star.
- Warm water — to activate the yeast.
- Kosher salt + extra virgin olive oil — to flavor the dough.
In this version, I’ve gone with some classic pizza ingredients for the sandwich fillings, but experiment with your favorites!
- Pepperoni — I went with sandwich slices.
- Prosciutto — for a sweet + salty experience.
- Fresh mozzarella
- Basil leaves
- Baby arugula
- Pizza sauce
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How To Make Grilled Pizza Dough Sandwiches
If you have a stand mixer, this is going to be soooo easy! (You can also mix the dough by hand and get a good workout.)
- Combine the flour, yeast and salt in the bowl of your stand mixer — fitted with the dough hook. With the mixer running on low, add the warm water and olive oil. Continue mixing on low speed for 5 minutes. (You may need to scrape the sides of the bowl at the beginning to make sure all the flour gets incorporated.)
- Turn the dough out on a lightly floured surface and knead it by hand for another couple of minutes. The surface should be smooth and elastic. Transfer the dough ball to a lightly oiled large bowl, cover with a tea towel or cling film and allow to rise for 1 hour.
- Punch down the dough and divide it into 4 portions. Shape each portion into a small round about 5” in diameter. Leave these to rest on a parchment lined sheet pan while you preheat the grill.
- Grill the dough for 3 minutes on each side. They will puff up a bit and get a crispy exterior.
- Allow to cool slightly, then split them in half. Spread the inside with pizza sauce then add your fillings. Put them back on the grill (lower heat or indirect heat) to warm the fillings and melt the cheese.
The world is your oyster! Mix up your filings to customize your sandwich, but here are a few ideas to use as a springboard…
Instead of pizza sauce, different spreads can include basil pesto, sun-dried tomato pesto, herb infused oils, or vinegars.
When it comes to meat, there are so many possibilities. Visit your local artisan deli or butcher shop for some exciting new options.
I love arugula on just about everything, but some other veggies that would be great in a pizza sandwich are roasted red peppers, grilled onions, sautéed mushrooms, grilled summer squash…I feel like this list could be endless!
How about fruit? Personally, the next time I make this it’s going to have prosciutto, arugula, goat cheese and FIGS!
Helpful Recipe Tips
Warming the water — the water temp should hover around 110°F. I pulled straight from the kitchen tap and used an instant read thermometer to check the temp. If necessary, you can microwave the water in 10 second increments until it reaches the magic temp.
Kneading the dough — your dough may be perfect right out of the mixing bowl, but even just a few turns by hand will help you know that the dough is the right texture. If the dough is still tacky, work in one tablespoon of flour at a time as you knead by hand until it reaches that smooth, elastic state.
Make ahead dough — there are several make ahead options: 1) make it the night before, transfer it to an oiled bowl, cover and store it in the fridge for an overnight rise; 2) grill the dough rounds, cool completely, wrap and freeze for another day; 3) grill the dough rounds, cool and cover on the counter to use later in the day.
Bake instead of grill — bake the dough on a parchment lined sheet pan in a 425°F oven for 8 to 10 minutes. Assemble the sandwiches and pop them back in the oven to warm or use a panini press.
Serving sizes — these are generous sandwiches! If serving as part of a larger spread, cut the sandwiches in half or in quarters. You could also divide the dough into six portions instead of four to create more modest size servings.
When to Make This
Have you ever had a ‘make your own pizza’ party? Do the same with these! Grill the dough earlier in the day. Set out various sandwich fillings and let guests create their own sandwiches. An interactive and delicious dinner party!
More Sandwich Recipes to Try!
- Tomato + Artichoke Two-Cheese Panini with Pesto Aioli
- Cold Italian Sub Sandwich Party Sliders
- Grilled Cheese Sandwich with Ricotta, Chicken + Fig
- Vegetarian Antipasto Grilled Cheese Sandwich
- Pepper Jack Cornbread Waffle Club Sandwich
- Super Easy Crispy Shrimp Sliders with Spicy Slaw
Grilled Pizza Dough Sandwiches
- 3 cups bread flour plus up to 4 tbsp more, if needed
- 1 packet active dry yeast (2-1/4 tsp)
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1 cup warm water about 110°F
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 4 oz pepperoni sandwich slices
- 4 oz prosciutto or other Italian deli meat
- 8 oz fresh mozzarella sliced thin, allow to sit out for 30 min before assembly
- 12 leaves fresh basil
- 2 cups baby arugula
- 1 cup pizza sauce as a spread and for dipping
- In the bowl of a stand mixer (fitted with a dough hook), combine the flour, yeast and salt. With the mixer running, add the water and olive oil and continue mixing on low for 5 minutes, scraping the sides as needed (specifically at the beginning).
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead by hand for another 2 to 3 minutes. (If the dough feels tacky, add one tablespoon of flour at a time as you knead it, until it achieves that smooth texture.) Transfer the dough to a large oiled bowl and cover with a tea towel or cling film. Allow it to rise for about 1 hour.
- Punch down the dough and divide it into 4 equal portions. On a lightly floured surface, shape each portion into about a 5" diameter round, using your hands. Transfer to a sheet pan lined with parchment. Cover with a tea towel and allow to rest for 10 to 15 minutes on the counter while you preheat the grill on high.
- Brush the grill grates clean and grease with oil. Carefully place the dough rounds on the grill. Cook for about 3 minutes on each side, using tongs or a spatula to flip the dough. Remove them to cool. Reduce the heat to medium.
- Cut each round in half to create a top and bottom (like a burger bun). Spread a little pizza sauce on each piece, then layer on the meat, mozzarella, basil leaves + arugula. Place back on the grill to warm and melt the cheese. Flip as needed.
- Cut the sandwiches in half and serve with additional pizza sauce on the side.
Nutritional values are estimated and provided as a general guideline only. I earn a commission from Instacart from qualifying ingredient purchases.