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Pizza Margherita | Simple ingredients create an outstanding pizza!

Homemade Pizza Margherita

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Simple, fresh ingredients combine to make my family’s favorite Homemade Pizza Margherita! So easy to make and impossible to resist.

With a simple topping of fresh mozzarella, tomatoes and basil, this Caprese Pizza is the best vegetarian pizza you’ll ever taste!

Homemade Pizza Margherita slices on a white plate

Homemade Pizza Margherita for a Quick Supper

By now, many of you know about how darn picky my family is! There are very few recipe that please them all. Pizza Margherita is always a hit and so simple to make. The first time I served this vegetarian pizza featuring fresh tomatoes, mozzarella and basil, it became an instant family favorite and was soon a regular on our meal rotation. 

When my oldest was in college, this was on our Friday night menu when he trekked home for the weekend. Though I have a feeling he’d be just as happy with a meat lover’s  or sausage and mushroom pizza! During Lent, the fish haters were happy when it was a meatless pizza and not tuna casserole for dinner. Served with a seasonal tossed salad, Pizza Margherita won’t break your budget or your diet!

Pizza Margherita ready for the oven

Pizza Dough from Scratch

Much as I love the ease of using a premade pizza dough, it’s even better to have some homemade on hand. This recipe makes two crusts, so park half in the freezer for another meal. Or double the toppings and make two pizzas!

I always pat my homemade pizza dough out on a sheet of parchment, top it and slide both the pizza and parchment right onto my preheated pizza stone in the oven. This technique makes for easy clean up and avoids the mess of dusting a pan with cornmeal. I use fresh mozzarella, but slices or shredded would be fine, too. And making this dish with fresh garden tomatoes and basil makes for a delicious meal that’s quite economical, too.

Pizza Margherita fresh out of the oven on a sheet of parchment

What’s a Margarita or Caprese Pizza?

Pizza Margarita originated in Naples (Napoli) and traditionally has the toppings of San Marzano tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, fresh basil, salt and extra virgin olive oil.

Some think the name  Pizza Margarita come from the flower-like arrangement of ingredients over the top of the dough as “margherita” translates to daisy in Italian. More popular is the story that Queen Margherita of Savoy was in Naples and tired of the French she’d been served. She asked the renowned local pizza maker, Raffaele Esposito, to make her favorite pizza with mozzarella, tomatoes and basil, which just happen to be the colors of the Italian flag. Esposito named this creation after Queen Margherita.

How to Make a Pizza Margarita

  • In the winter, I make this Caprese pizza with meatier plum tomatoes, but thinly sliced garden tomatoes are a terrific option in the summer.
  • I lay the slices out over paper toweling to let the juices drain to avoid a soggy crust.
  • Purchasing premade dough makes this a snap to prepare, but homemade pizza dough is even better.
  • I snip basil from my herb garden, too, so at the peak of tomato season, all that’s needed from the market is a ball of fresh mozzarella.
  • Of course, shredded mozz will work, too; but if you haven’t experienced the latter, please give it a try.

Then after dinner, gather the family and take a walk around the block. It’s a great habit and will rev up your metabolism while providing more time to chat, laugh, reminisce and bond. Pizza Margherita photo and text collage

More Weekday Supper Inspiration:

Weekday Supper Menu

Check out the delicious line up for this week:

Monday – Turkey and Barley Casserole by Cindy’s Recipes and Writings
Tuesday – Warm Shrimp and Avocado Salad by Family Foodie
Wednesday – Caprese Chicken Panzanella Salad by Peanut Butter and Peppers
Thursday – Pizza Margherita or Caprese Pizza by That Skinny Chick Can Bake
Friday – Chicken and Broccoli Pesto Pitas by Curious Cuisiniere

Homemade Pizza Margherita

Homemade Pizza Margherita

My family's favorite pizza!

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Yield 1 pizza



  • 1 ½ cups warm water, 105-115 degrees (use a thermometer)
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 2 ¼ teaspoons active dry yeast, (one 1/4 ounce packet, I prefer Red Star Yeast)
  • 4 cups bread flour or all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil


  • 8-ounce ball of fresh Mozzarella, sliced
  • 2 medium to large garden tomatoes or 4-6 plum tomatoes, cut into thin slices and drained on paper toweling
  • Fresh basil, cut into thin strips
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Extra virgin olive oil


  1. Combine water, honey, and yeast. Let rest about 5-10 minutes..mixture should be foamy. Mix flour and salt the bowl of a stand mixer fit with the dough hook. Knead on low speed (check your manufacturer's instructions so you don't burn out your motor) or knead by hand for 10 minutes. Dough should be elastic and slightly sticky.
  2. Oil a mixing bowl, add dough then turn to coat dough with oil. Cover with plastic and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about an hour.
  3. Place pizza stone into oven and preheat to 450º.
  4. Punch dough down and divide dough in half (freeze half for use later). Pat out dough into a large circle onto parchment paper, top with tomatoes, cheese, then season with salt, pepper and basil strips. Drizzle with olive oil. Using pizza peel, slide pizza and parchment onto pizza stone. Bake about 15 minutes or till crust is brown and cheese is bubbly.


Dough recipe adapted from Cuisine at Home (note that this recipe will make enough for 2 pizzas. Save half for another day or double the toppings).
Total time does not reflect proofing time.



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32 comments on “Homemade Pizza Margherita”

  1. Pizza Margherita is my absolute favorite, yours looks mouth watering!

  2. Love the colours! And yummo, this is one of the simpler pizzas to do but definitely one of the most delicious!

    Gourmet Getaways

  3. I don’t often think of pizza as beautiful, but your pics are great! It’s 5:30AM and I’d dive right into that pizza now:@)

  4. Classic pizza! And yours look just perfect!

  5. Fresh garden tomatoes are perfect for Margherita pizza! Love the red and yellow combination!

  6. Great tip on using parchment paper instead of the cornmeal. I am going to try that the next time I make pizza at home.

  7. I can’t wait to make this! I’d much rather CHEESE than any sauce!!

  8. This is a great way to use our garden tomatoes. We are finally harvesting after three summers of nothing,

  9. Love your recipe! Nothing better then a homemade pizza — and those garden fresh tomatoes make it perfect!

  10. I love margherita pizza. This is just how I like it with fresh basil and mozzarella. I have been getting the best heirloom tomatoes too. So very delicious.

  11. Liz!!! Pizza Margherita is my fave!!! love the fresh tomatoes, mozzarella and basil!

  12. Great pizza. I know many find this one too basic but the secret is in the quality of the ingredients. I want a slice now lol.

  13. wow, simply deliious!!!!
    i think i’m gonna use cherry tomatoes for this recipe, kicking tangy flavour…..

  14. Every dish you make looks amazing! It’s funny, I baked bread successfully as a college student buy haven’t ever tried making pizza dough. Now is a good a time as ever! Thanks for the recipe.


  15. So simple, but so deeply delicious – beautiful pie! Love the multi colored tomatoes especially 🙂

  16. I love this pizza I want a piece please Lizzy:)))

  17. Your pizza looks delicious, Liz… love those toppings, so fresh! Interesting to see pizza with a thicker crust.

  18. One pizza would never have been enough for us! We lneeded two because the kids always wanted to make sure there was a slice for breakfast!! Looks superb!

  19. Hi Liz, this is my favorite kind of pizza, love the different kinds tomatoes used here.

  20. You have my attention as you have my favorite pizza!!!! YUM!!!

  21. I’m so pleased this one is a crowd-pleaser with the whole family. This would be a crowd-pleaser with my family too especially if presented on a Friday night – that’s the night we try to relax and unwind with pizza. Homemade pizza dough really does make all the difference, doesn’t it, and I like how your recipe makes enough to freeze a quantity xx

  22. That’s a brilliant Friday night dinner!

  23. Gorgeous looking pizza Liz! The crust looks fantastic, we’re gonna try it next week:) We are going to Panos’s parents in Evia island, and they have a beautiful organic garden so fresh tomatoes and basil are in abundance. We havent’ tried fresh mozzarella that much (usually we put slices on top of yellow shredded mozzarella), so we’ll try your version with fresh mozzarella-only.
    Thank you for another delicious post Liz!
    Panos and Mirella

  24. Pizza Margherite, always a good tip ! Love the colours !

  25. A fantastic pizza recipe using all the garden tomatoes. I like that it wasn’t overloaded with toppings…less is more!

  26. This is one of my favorite pizza and those tomatoes look so perfect!

  27. Now this would go down well in my house as well, everyone wold be happy with this. I’m intrigued by the honey in the pizza dough I have never tried that and will definitely give it a go.

  28. Yum, this is one of our favorite pizzas 🙂 I love all the fresh tomatoes, basil and mozzarella in here! Looks delicious!

  29. This pizza looks incredible and how about perfect timing with garden tomatoes! Going to make this pizza for the upcoming week!

  30. YEEEEEEESSSS I love Margherita pizza!

  31. I’ve never had this before what is wrong with me?

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