How Long Can Pizza Dough Sit Out?  

Last Updated on July 7, 2022 by Amanda P. Brown

Pizza dough can sit for 1 hour or up to 3 days. It depends on your preference for the dough. It’s essential to prove the dough makes a perfect pizza. Although making pizza at home has already become quite common and very popular, the confusion remains about how long pizza dough can sit out before cooking. The dough must sit out for 8 hours or overnight for most of the pizza, but there might be a risk of over-proofing. 

To know more about How Long Can Pizza Dough Sit Out?  take a little dive into this article.

How Long to Let Pizza Dough Rise?

How Long to Let Pizza Dough Rise

Pizza makers suggest letting a pizza dough rise for a day. Make the dough. Let it rest for 24 hours. A day’s rest makes the dough easy to digest, flavorful, and the perfect texture.

Now, if you do not have 24 hours in hand, this article is all you need. You can speed up the rising process. Try adding dry yeast that will boost the speed. Put some plastic wrap over the bowl containing your dough, and put it somewhere cool to store it. You can put it in the refrigerator even at room temperature.

There’s a perfect way to know whether your dough has risen perfectly. If the dough has expanded and become nearly double before, then you can be sure that your dough has risen perfectly!

1. Find Out the Best Rising Time

If you hear it from experts, an essential and inevitable ingredient is time, precisely the rising time. Now, if you plan to have a pizza party tomorrow, you better prepare your dough and let it rise overnight. And if you do not have the time to let it ferment overnight, you can start doing it in the morning. In that case, you can use the speed-up methods.

I suggest you take the trouble, make the dough earlier, and let it rise for a whole day. The flavor and texture have evolved noticeably. 

2. Best Place to Let Pizza Dough Rise

After preparing your dough, you need to let it rise. You know the ideal fermentation time, but the question arises of which is the best place to let the pizza dough rise. 

Your needs should take into consideration before settling on a location. If you have enough time and are letting your dough rise overnight, then you can put it in the refrigerator and cover it up with plastic wrap. This is for a slow rise.

But if you want a fast rise, you can put your pizza dough in the oven or the kitchen sink, which means a warmer place. This speeds up the fermentation process. 

Wherever you place the dough, do not forget to cover it up.

How Long Can Dough Sit Out on the Counter?

If you are going for the fast fermentation process, then your kitchen counter table is a perfect place for resting your dough.

But the question is how long you can keep it there. The most probable time is 4-6 hours. If you have used yeast in the dough, you cannot keep it outside for more than 4 hours. And if your dough is sourdough, you can keep it unsupervised for up to 6 hours on your kitchen counter.

But those who have a cooler kitchen might need an additional hour or two for the perfect dough.

Now you might ask if the 1st and 2nd rise will cover in these 4 hours. Well, if your kitchen has the perfect temperature, the 1st rise will occur in 1-2 hours and the second rise in the next 1.5 hours.

When you see your dough has expanded twice, then your dough is ready.

Leaving the Dough on the Counter Table Overnight:

Many folks have asked if they can use dough sitting out overnight. People often forget to put the dough in the refrigerator, which leads them to this situation. The dough must stay at room temperature for only the first 2-4 hours and then be kept in the refrigerator. 

But if you have left it at room temperature, you can still use it, but only if the dough doesn’t contain eggs. 

Doughs with no eggs in them can be left at room temperature overnight, but only if it is perfectly covered by plastic wrap. 

I suggest not leaving your dough out for more than 4 hours.

Rising Dough in the Refrigerator:

If this is your first attempt at making pizza dough, then letting it rise in the fridge will just be the perfect option for you. But to do so, you first need to cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Then put it in the refrigerator. Do not forget to use a large bowl because the dough will rise and come to a size double that before.  

Keeping the dough in the refrigerator lessens the chances of proofing and also protects the dough from getting sour. 

Depending on your crust preference, you can also keep the dough in the fridge for 4 hours/ 12 hours/ 36 hours. 

I think the more time it takes to rise, the better the crust.

Reasons Why a Pizza Dough Gets Bad:

Generally, the life span of a pizza dough depends on the amount of yeast used. The yeast produces gas inside the dough, and the Gluten traps the gas inside. As long as the yeast and gluten work accordingly, the pizza dough is supposed to be good. But the time, when this stops functioning, the pizza dough starts losing its shape and texture. The doughs stored in the refrigerator stay fresh much longer than those kept at room temperature. 

Read More: How to Tell If Pizza Dough Is Bad?

Tips and Tricks to Stretch Out Your Pizza Like a Professional

Tips and Tricks to Stretch Out the Pizza

Pizza craving is one of those natural things for me. So one of these days, my pizza craving made me try making a pizza at home. After two drastically unsuccessful attempts, I discovered some amazing features about stretching the dough. Now I’m going to share it with you to make your pizza-making journey easier and happier!

  • When you see a perfect rise of your dough, then only start the stretching part. If you think the size isn’t nearly double, it is better to wait another hour or two.
  • If your dough was resting in the refrigerator, then your wait will prolong by another 30-40 minutes to let the dough come to room temperature. 
  • The dough needs to come to room temperature before you can work with it. Because the Gluten (which makes the dough chewy) gets hard when cold, if you start stretching, your dough will constantly return to its previous form, more likely to be rubber.
  •  It is vital to graze the workplace with oil (best if olive oil) to avoid sticking. It will also give the dough a brown and crispy flavor. You can also use ½ tablespoon of oil in your hands to prevent sticking.
  • Before stretching out the dough, press it to make it circular. Then stretch it till the length gets around 10″ and the width around 1-3.” 
  • After it’s done, you get your desired dough! 
  • Now, if you face any difficulties like imperfect edges or not exactly 10 inches long or the corners are not wider than the center, then there is no reason to worry.
  • The dough shrinks to a minimum extent that is very normal! If it is somewhat around 10 inches, then you can be assured. But it has shrunk more. Then you can give it around a round of stretch and wait for 10-15 minutes to observe if it again shrinks or not. 
  • About the corners, not being wide enough is alright. Once you are done filing the toppings, the pizza will eventually get heavier in the center, and the corners will puff and be wide precisely the way you want. 

Final Verdict

If you are attempting to make pizza at home, then only a few cautious can help you get a perfect pizza with the best crust, crispy, texture, and flavor. The more time you give to rising, the flavorful the pizza dough gets. Several eggs, yeast, and Gluten affect the lifespan of the dough, so you must follow proper instructions. Temperature is also a big factor.

However, to give you more information about How Long Can Pizza Dough Sit Out? I tried to gather together complete details on this topic above. I hope this information is helpful to you when you bake your next pizza.

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