What is the Difference Between Sourdough Pizza vs Normal Pizza?

Have you ever wondered about the difference between a sourdough pizza and a regular pizza? I honestly thought that regular, normal pizza was the original pizza and sourdough pizza was the new trendy kid on the block, but in fact, that’s backward. The truth is, the original pizzas were essentially sourdough because all bread dough was sourdough due to the lack of commercial yeast. However, with the advancement of technology and food processing techniques, the use of commercial yeast has become more widespread.

My family and I have been having “Friday pizza nights” most weeks and when I started baking sourdough bread a few years ago I started experimenting with sourdough pizza and haven’t looked back. It’s healthier, and somehow both crispier and chewier and the kids absolutely love it.

When it comes to the type of dough used, the classic Neapolitan pizza is made with a sourdough starter – this is because, in the past, all bread was sourdough bread. In recent years, sourdough pizza has grown in popularity, with more and more pizza makers looking to create a unique and healthier dough to better suit their customers’ dietary needs. But what exactly makes sourdough pizza different from normal pizza? Let’s take a closer look.

Does sourdough make good pizza?

I’ve been serving sourdough pizza to friends and family for a couple of years now and nobody has ever noticed that it’s not “normal” pizza. It’s just pizza in their eyes (and mouths!).

Sourdough pizza has a distinct flavor and texture that sets it apart from regular pizza. The tangy and slightly sour flavor comes from the fermentation of the sourdough starter. Sourdough starters are made from a mixture of flour and water, left to ferment for several days. This creates a culture of wild yeast and bacteria that leaven the dough and give it that characteristic sourdough taste. The longer the dough is left to ferment, the more pronounced the sour flavor becomes.

The texture of sourdough pizza crust is also different from regular pizza crust. The fermentation process allows for a more complex and flavorful pizza crust and creates a chewy texture without making the crust too tough. Additionally, sourdough pizza can be easier to digest than normal pizza since the fermentation process releases enzymes that help break down the gluten in the dough. The longer fermentation time allows for more complex gluten development, creating a stronger and more elastic dough.

Why sourdough pizza?

Sourdough pizza is becoming increasingly popular due to its unique flavor, texture, and health benefits. Despite this popularity, many folks still ask me, “What is sourdough pizza?” It is pizza made with a sourdough starter, which is a mixture of flour and water that contains natural yeast and bacteria. The sourdough fermentation process breaks down complex carbohydrates, making the pizza easier to digest and reducing the gluten content.

Sourdough pizza crust is typically thicker and chewier than regular pizza crust. The fermentation process of the sourdough starter produces lactic acid, which gives the crust its tangy flavor and chewy texture. Sourdough pizza crust also has a unique aroma and a slightly sour taste, which many people find appealing.

In contrast, regular pizza crust is often thinner and crispier than sourdough pizza crust. It is made using commercial yeast, which results in a more straightforward fermentation process and a milder flavor profile. Regular pizza crust can be crispy on the outside and tender on the inside, depending on how it’s prepared.

In terms of nutrition, sourdough pizza crust is often considered a healthier option. The sourdough fermentation process breaks down complex carbohydrates, making the crust easier to digest and reducing the gluten content. This makes it a better choice for people with gluten sensitivities or digestive issues. Sourdough pizza crust is also lower on the glycemic index than regular pizza crust, meaning it won’t cause a rapid spike in blood sugar levels.

Overall, sourdough pizza crust and regular pizza crust have distinct characteristics that appeal to different tastes and preferences. Sourdough pizza crust is chewier, tangier, and healthier, while regular pizza crust is thinner, crispier, and milder in flavor.

Sourdough pizza crust vs regular pizza crust

The key difference between sourdough pizza crust and regular pizza crust is the use of sourdough starter instead of commercial yeast. Commercial yeast is a fast-acting leavening agent that produces a light and fluffy dough. However, sourdough starter takes longer to leaven the dough, resulting in a denser and chewier crust. The longer fermentation time also allows for more flavor development in the dough.

Sourdough pizza crusts are usually less prone to browning because the fermentation process breaks down some of the starches into simpler sugars, which caramelize at lower temperatures. This means that the crust can be cooked for a shorter amount of time without burning or becoming too dry. Ultimately, sourdough pizza crusts offer a unique texture and flavor not found in other types of crusts. The sourdough flavor lends itself well to a variety of toppings, from classic mozzarella-and-tomato combinations to more unusual topping combinations like pear, gorgonzola, and honey. No matter what you choose, sourdough pizza is sure to be a winner.

Sourdough pizza vs yeast

Yeast is a fast-acting leavening agent that produces a light and fluffy pizza crust. However, it lacks the complex flavor and texture that sourdough provides. Sourdough pizza crust has a distinct tangy flavor and chewy texture that is not found in yeast-based crusts. Additionally, sourdough starter is a natural and sustainable alternative to commercial yeast, as it does not require any additional processing or additives.

Sourdough pizza vs poolish

Poolish is a type of pre-ferment made from a mixture of flour, water, and commercial yeast. It is used to enhance the flavor and texture of bread dough. The mixture is left to ferment for several hours or overnight before being incorporated into the final bread dough. The use of poolish can enhance the flavor and texture of bread, as the long fermentation time allows for the development of complex flavors and a softer, more elastic dough. Poolish is often used in recipes for artisan breads, such as baguettes or ciabatta, and can be a useful tool for bakers who want to add more depth of flavor to their breads. However, poolish lacks the complexity of flavor and texture that sourdough provides. Sourdough pizza crust is denser and chewier than poolish-based crusts, with a distinct tangy flavor.

Sourdough pizza vs Neapolitan

Neapolitan pizza is a type of pizza that originated in Naples, Italy. It is characterized by a thin crust that is slightly crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. Neapolitan pizza dough is a pizza dough that uses specific ingredients – Tipo 00 soft wheat flour from Naples, fresh or commercial yeast, natural salt and water – and follows a specific process. Sourdough pizza, on the other hand, is made with sourdough starter instead of commercial yeast, resulting in a denser and chewier crust with a distinct tangy flavor.

However, you can actually make Neapolitan pizza with sourdough starter instead of commercial yeast, and many chefs around the world are embracing this, like Franco Manca in Glasgow and Marc Forgione in New York City. Both cite the more developed flavor and easier digestibility as key reasons for using sourdough starter to make their pizzas.

Sourdough discard pizza dough same day

One of the biggest hassles with making sourdough pizza or any pizza whose dough recipe needs to ferment overnight is that you need to plan ahead. What if you decide to have friends over tonight and need to make pizza dough in a hurry? Deep breath, it’s going to be okay! You won’t be able to make the pizza dough instantly, but if you have a few hours it can be accomplished.

Simple Recipe for Same-Day Sourdough Pizza Made With Starter Discard

Ingredients:

  • 225g (about 1 cup) sourdough starter discard
  • 300g (about 2 1/2 cups) bread flour (only have all-purpose flour on hand–no prob! You can use 00 flour too)
  • 6g (1/2 tsp) salt
  • 118ml (1/2 cup) warm water
  • 30ml (2 tbsp) olive oil

Instructions:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the sourdough starter discard, all-purpose flour, and salt. Mix until well combined.
  2. Add warm water and olive oil to the dry mixture, and mix until a shaggy dough forms.
  3. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead for 2-3 minutes, until the dough is smooth and elastic. You can also use an electric stand mixer with a dough hook.
  4. Place the dough in a clean, oiled bowl and cover with a clean kitchen towel. Let the dough rest for at least 2-3 hours, or until it has doubled in size.
  5. Preheat your oven to 500°F (260°C).
  6. Punch down the dough and divide it into two equal pieces. Shape each piece into a round and place them onto a baking sheet or pizza stone lined with parchment paper.
  7. Top the pizza dough with your desired toppings, leaving a small border around the edges.
  8. Bake in the preheated oven for 10-12 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown and the cheese is melted.
  9. Remove from the oven and let the pizza cool for a few minutes before slicing and serving.

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