Red Grape, Goat Cheese + Basil Beer-Crusted Pizza

This recipe was created in partnership with J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines, but all opinions and ideas are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that keep DisplacedHousewife in the kitchen! xo

Hey loves! I hope this finds you well and rested and ready to make some pizza. Get yourself cozy and let’s talk pizza and entertaining, because before you know it the holidays will be upon us and we’ll be wondering what to effortlessly feed a crowd with.

One of my very favorite ways to feed a group is by (surprise!) having a pizza + wine party. In fact, it’s how we spend every Christmas Eve and just about any visitor that breezes through town usually gets a pizza night. It’s one of those meals that works anytime of the year and makes 99.9% of the population very, very happy. That .1% is highly suspect, in my most humble opinion.

What makes pizza so perfect for entertaining is that you can prep the dough ahead of time, which gets the biggest step in making pizza out of the way. And I’ll go so far as to say that this dough actually tastes better if it’s had at least overnight in the fridge, if not several days.

I have several more reasons to make the case for pizza as the ultimate entertaining food: you can set out toppings, so people can customize what goes on their pizza (yay!). People love to help make pizza, so you’re not slaving away alone in the kitchen. And lastly, it’s the perfect companion to a glass of wine and I don’t think anybody will fight me on that.

I partnered with J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines to bring you my current pizza obsession: grapes + goat cheese on pizza with heaps of fresh basil. When they sent me the J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay this was the first thing that came to mind to make. There are lots of peachy, citrus and honey notes in the wine that perfectly complement the flavors in this pizza …or maybe the pizza complements the flavors in the Chardonnay?? Either way, they’re a good match.

If I were to make more pizzas to pair with this J. Lohr Chardonnay, I would make a strong case for figs + goat cheese or thinly sliced meyer lemon + burrata… Think about it.

Before We Get Started:

  • BEER. I love to add beer to my dough which amplifies the yeastiness. I recommend a pretty mild beer. Don’t waste your money on a full-bodied, more expensive beer–those tend to give an off flavor to the dough.
  • SHAPING. When shaping your pizza, handle it gently. If it seems to be bouncing back when stretched, let it rest another 10-15 minutes and then try again. I prefer to shape my pizzas by hand, rather than use a rolling pin as I feel the latter presses out beautiful dough bubbles. Just my preference.
  • BBQ. When it’s warmer out, I’ll crank up my BBQ as hot as it will go and place a pizza stone in there to create my own little pizza oven. I love the way the pizzas bake up, just note that you have to allow a bit of time between pizzas to let the interior of the BBQ heat up again.
  • RISE TIME. I used to be maniacal about making sure I stuck to that first rise time. However, the more I’ve made this dough the more I realize that it can sit out for quite some time during this initial rise…I’ve let it sit out for anywhere from 2 to 12 hours and I’ve been happy with the results every time. So if you can’t quite stick to the schedule, don’t sweat it.
  • MAKE-AHEAD. As mentioned above, this dough is great to make ahead of time. Prepare it until you get it in the bowl during Step 1 and then wrap it tightly and stash in the fridge. I often like to put it in a lightly oiled re-sealable plastic bag, that seems to protect it the most from drying out in the fridge and makes it a little easier to stash in a crowded fridge (like mine). It’s fine to use it the next day, but I often find that three days later is when I like the taste of the crust the best…the flavors have really had a chance to develop.
  • LARGE GROUPS. Whenever I make this for large groups, I have never found it convenient to just double the recipe. I have a very large mixer and it is seriously just too much dough for it. It will also be difficult to store as it doubles in size—you’d need a ginormous bowl! So make each batch individually and you’ll be much happier with the effort + result.

Let’s make some pizza, shall we?


Red Grape, Goat Cheese + Basil
Beer-Crusted Pizza

Makes Three Large or Six Individual Pizzas

INGREDIENTS

For the Dough

  • 1 12-ounce bottle of room temperature, light-flavored beer or water
  • 4 teaspoons dry yeast or ¼ cup fresh starter
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting your hands and the dough
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, plus extra for the bowl
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons honey or granulated sugar
  • 4 teaspoons of sea salt

For the Sauce

  • 1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

Toppings

  • 8 to 12 ounces fresh mozzarella or burrata
  • 1 ½ cups red grapes
  • 1 cup fresh basil leaves
  • 3 ounces goat cheese
  • 2 ounces parmesan, finely shredded
  • Olive oil to drizzle over the top
  • Parsley or other fresh herbs to sprinkle on the top
  • Dried chili pepper flakes, optional

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. In an electric stand mixer fitted with the dough attachment add the beer and yeast and let sit for 15 minutes until it’s foamy and frothy. Add in your flour, olive oil, honey and salt and knead on medium-high for about 15 minutes.
  2. In the beginning the dough will stick to the bottom of the mixer…as it continues to knead it will start to form a smooth and elastic dough ball. When you’re ready to get it out of the bowl, lightly flour your hands and sprinkle the dough with flour to help get it out. It will be a bit oozy. That’s ok. Lightly oil a large bowl with olive oil, set the dough inside, turning to coat with the oil. Cover the bowl lightly with plastic wrap or a damp kitchen towel and set in a warm spot for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until doubled in size.
  3. Once your dough has doubled in size, separate it into three or six equally sized dough balls (whichever you prefer, depending on how many pizzas you want to make) and set on parchment paper that’s been lightly dusted in flour. Lightly dust the tops of the dough balls with flour as well. Loosely cover with plastic wrap or a damp kitchen towel and let sit for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until doubled in size. Once they’ve doubled in size, shape each ball into a disc…gently stretching into a round shape…don’t go for perfect, that’s part of the charm of homemade pizza. You may need to use a wee bit of flour to keep it from sticking. Set the shaped pizza dough on a baking sheet covered in parchment paper.
  4. For the sauce, in a medium bowl combine the basil, parsley, olive oil and balsamic and set aside.
  5. Preheat your oven to 500 degrees F and make sure you have a rack in the top third of the oven, at least 6-inches from the heat source.
  6. Put about 2 tablespoons of the green sauce on each pizza, leaving a 1-inch gutter around the edge that is sauce free. Sprinkle with some mozzarella (don’t overdo it), add the grapes, basil, goat cheese and parmesan and drizzle with a bit of olive oil. Bake the pizza on the parchment-covered baking sheet on the top rack of the oven for 13-15 minutes until bronzed and charred in spots. Let sit for at least five minutes before cutting into the pizzas…you want the cheese to firm up a bit. Sprinkle with some fresh herbs and/or dried chili pepper flakes and eat. Enjoy!!!
  7. Thank you for making this beer-crust pizza! Tag me on social @displacedhousewife #displacedhousewife so I can see your gorgeous pizza pies!!!

13 Comments

  • sheenam | thetwincookingproject.net 2018/09/28 at 5:45 PM

    Oh my!! They look so perfect. Yummmm!!

    Reply
  • Gerlinde /Sunnycovechef 2018/09/26 at 2:48 PM

    I just found your blog via the Beachhousekitchen . Putting beer in yeast dough is a great idea . I have to try it.

    Reply
  • 2pots2cook 2018/09/23 at 1:22 PM

    Totally into it ! Grazie milla !

    Reply
  • Laura | Tutti Dolci 2018/09/19 at 1:24 AM

    I just love this pizza – the grapes are the perfect touch! :)

    Reply
  • Colette 2018/09/11 at 11:11 PM

    Oh, what gorgeousness is this?!
    Love your mani, too!

    Reply
  • Colette 2018/09/11 at 10:46 PM

    Oh, what gorgeousness is this?!

    Reply
  • Mary Ann | The Beach House Kitchen 2018/09/10 at 11:45 AM

    You make the most awesome pizzas Rebecca!! I totally love the toppings on this one. Such a great dinner to enjoy with friends AND wine this fall! I’m on it!

    Reply
    • Rebecca Firth 2018/09/16 at 4:26 PM

      Hey Mary Ann!! I just love making them!!! And PERFECT for friends and wine!!! xoxo

      Reply
  • Amisha 2018/09/10 at 5:51 AM

    I love this pizza so much Rebecca! Love the fall influence with the grapes, and basil with goat cheese. Looks really delicious!! Great pairing with the Chardonnay too! :)

    Reply
    • Rebecca Firth 2018/09/16 at 4:27 PM

      Thank you so much Amisha!!! It’s so good with this Chardonnay!! xoxo

      Reply
  • Stella 2018/09/09 at 2:40 PM

    I love putting grapes on pizza, will have to try adding beer to the dough! Thanks for the tip :)

    Reply
    • Rebecca Firth 2018/09/09 at 3:04 PM

      Hey Stella! You have the same name as my daughter!!! You have to try the beer in the dough, I think you’ll love it!!! xoxo

      Reply

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