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5 Easy Ways To Thaw-Out Frozen Pizza Dough

Making your own pizzas at home is a super fun way to spend time with loved ones before dinner. Hey, even making a pizza just for yourself can be very enjoyable. It allows you to express your creativity and enjoy one of the world’s favorite dishes!

However, it’s often difficult to judge the quantities you need for making your own pizza dough and most people end up with more than they need for one batch.

Of course, you can simply freeze the leftovers but that presents a later problem of how to thaw it out to be ready to use again.

5 Easy Ways To Thaw-Out Frozen Pizza Dough

Thankfully, there are plenty of ways to thaw frozen pizza dough and we’ll be looking at the 5 best methods in this guide!

Quick Answer How To Defrost Frozen Pizza Dough: You can thaw out frozen pizza dough using your refrigerator, microwave, or oven. However, you can also do it by submerging the dough in cold or warm water.

Comparison Table

MethodTime Taken
The refrigerator8 hours+
Submerging in cold water6 hours+
Submerging in warm water2 hours+
The microwave45-60 minutes
The oven1 – 1.5 hours
Method 1 The Refrigerator

Method 1: The Refrigerator

Time taken: 8 hours+

This first method is pretty straightforward. After all, this is how most people will defrost most of their food, anyway.

Start by taking your frozen pizza dough out of the freezer and then transfer it to a separate container. You can use a plastic zip-lock bag or a Tupperware box but you should make sure it’s air-tight and has enough room for the dough to expand slightly.

If you’re really stuck for storage containers, you can always palace your dough in a bowl and cover it with plastic wrap.

After a couple of hours, the temperature of the outside layer of your pizza dough will be around the same as the fridge temperature. Eventually, the center will also come up to this temperature, meaning the dough will be malleable again.

The easiest way to ensure your dough is in the fridge long enough is to leave it overnight, the night before you need to cook with it.

However, fridge-temperature pizza dough still isn’t very easy to work with, so you’ll need it to warm up even more. Make sure you take the dough out of the fridge at least an hour before you need to use it to allow it to come up to room temperature.

Method 2 Submerging In Cold Water

Method 2: Submerging In Cold Water

Time taken: 6 hours +

Another pretty common way to defrost any kind of frozen food is to submerge it in a cold-water bath. The beauty of this method is it tends to be a little quicker than using the refrigerator but doesn’t pose any risk of damaging the dough- so long as you do it right.

First off, take the pizza dough out of the freezer and keep it in its original packaging or some other kind of air-tight container. In the case of this method, a water-tight container like a zip-lock bag is essential because otherwise, the dough would become soggy.

Then, place the dough (in its container) into a large bowl. Fill this bowl up with cold water from your sink until the dough is completely covered by it.

If your dough keeps wanting to float in the water, simply place a heavy object like a plate on top of it to weigh it down and make sure it is fully submerged.

After only a couple of hours, your dough should be thawed all the way through and you’ll notice some small bubbles forming on its surface. At this point, remove the dough from the bowl and leave it to sit at room temperature for about an hour. Now, it’s ready to use!

Method 3 Submerging In Warm Water

Method 3: Submerging In Warm Water

Time taken: 2 hours+

This next method is a little riskier in terms of thawing out the dough safely, without damaging it. Sure, it’ll be a lot quicker than the previous two methods but you do risk being left with unusable dough if you get it wrong.

Follow all the same initial steps as the previous method, placing the dough in a water-tight container and putting it into a large bow. Then, the key is to fill the bowl with warm water rather than cold water.

Run the warm faucet from your sink but make sure you don’t let the water get too hot. If the water you use is too hot, you’ll end up partially cooking the outside of the pizza dough and the center won’t get defrosted at all

You’ll also need to change the water out every 10-15 minutes because the frozen pizza dough will lower the temperature of the water pretty quickly.

Keep changing out the water and checking on the dough until it is soft and ready to be used. Again, it’s a good idea to leave the dough to rest at room temperature for a little while after it’s thawed.

Method 4 The Microwave Method

Method 4: The Microwave Method

Time taken: 45-60 minutes

Microwaves are a classically risky way to defrost food. In general, you should avoid thawing out raw meat with a microwave because of how inconsistent the results can be.

However, with frozen pizza dough, the worst you can do is partially cook it, which isn’t the end of the world.

Start by preparing a microwave-safe plate or bowl by spraying or rubbing it with cooking oil to stop the dough from sticking to it. Place the dough onto the plate or into the bowl and cover it with plastic wrap. You don’t want it to splutter all over the inside of your microwave.

Then, place it in the microwave and set it to high heat for 25 seconds. This should be enough time to thaw out part of the dough without cooking it.

Next, take the dough out, unwrap it, flip it over, and return it to the microwave for a further 25 seconds.

When you take the dough out now, it should be slightly cool, rather than frozen. It should also not have risen.

Finally, return the dough to the microwave on the ‘defrost’ setting for 3-5 minutes, depending on the size of your dough.

Once you think the dough has defrosted completely, leave it at room temperature for a while before you use it.

Method 5 The Oven Method

Method 5: The Oven Method

Time taken: 1 – 1.5 hours

The final method we’re looking at should only be used as a last resort if you’re really pushed for time or the other methods aren’t an option.

Start by preparing an oven-safe dish by spraying it with cooking oil. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and place it in the center of this dish. Place the dish into your oven, then turn it on to around 100°F, or the lowest setting your oven has.

After roughly one hour, check the dough to see if it has risen at all. If it has, this is a good sign that it has been fully defrosted. When it is completely thawed out, your dough will be around double the size it was when frozen.

The best part of this method is that once the dough has reached this point, it will be ready to use straight away and you don’t necessarily need to leave it for an hour at room temperature.

Of course, if your oven can’t go to a setting that’s as low as 100°F, don’t bother with this method. It will most likely cook part of your dough before the center is thawed and you won’t be able to use it afterward.

Frequently Asked Questions

Should I Thaw Pizza Dough Before Baking?

Just like with any other food, pizza dough does need to be thawed out before you bake with it. It’s perfectly fine to freeze once you’ve finished using it and if you have some dough left over. However, you can’t cook an adequate pizza with frozen dough.

How Long Does Pizza Dough Take To Defrost?

Depending on the method you use, pizza dough could take anywhere from 45 minutes to 10 hours. If you simply leave your dough at room temperature or in your refrigerator, it’ll be an overnight job of at least 8 hours.

However, if you use a microwave with the ‘defrost’ setting, your dough could be defrosted in only 45-60 minutes.

Does Frozen Pizza Dough Need To Rise After Thawing?

If you’ve followed all of the steps we’ve outlined properly for each thawing method, you’ll still need to allow the dough some time to rise. This is as simple as leaving it at room temperature for about one hour and you should come back to it has roughly doubled in size.

5 Easy Ways To Thaw-Out Frozen Pizza Dough

How To Thaw-Out Frozen Pizza Dough

Prep Time: 1 minute
Active Time: 7 minutes
Additional Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 38 minutes

The fastest way to defrost your pizza dough is in the microwave. Just heat the pizza dough in short intervals on the defrost setting and then let the dough rest for half an hour at room temperature.


  • Frozen pizza dough


  • Microwave
  • Microwave-safe dish
  • Plastic wrap


  1. Place the pizza dough in a microwave-safe dish: Put your frozen pizza dough on a microwave-safe plate or dish. Then, cover the dough with plastic wrap.
  2. Heat the frozen pizza dough: Put the pizza dough inside the microwave and heat it on the highest setting for 25 seconds. Then take it out, and turn the dough. Replace it in the microwave, and heat for another 25 seconds.
  3. Change your microwave setting to defrost: Change the temperature settings of your microwave from high to defrost. Then heat the pizza dough for another 3 to 5 minutes.
  4. Let the dough rest: Remove the dough from the microwave and let it rest for half an hour at room temperature.
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