Trader Joe’s Pizza Dough Review. I make homemade pizza once or twice a week. I have growing teenagers that can consume ungodly amounts of pizza. I love pizza too and I know it’s something I can get the whole family to eat! I make a pepperoni for the kids and an adult pizza with whatever I dreamed up that day.
My wife loves pizza with potatoes and eggs on it and sometimes we even make breakfast pizzas with bacon and eggs on them! The sky is the limit when it comes to dreaming up new pizzas…
OK, every so often I am in a pinch for time and the kids want pizza, but I don’t want to make the frozen pizzas from Trader Joe’s and I didn’t start pizza dough in the morning. I want to bake pizza dough with store-bought pizza dough from Trader Joe’s. They are good, but nearly as good as the ones you bake from scratch IMHO. Buying fresh dough from Trader Joe’s is a good alternative, but there are a few things you need to know to make a good pizza from TJ’s Pizza Dough:
1. There are three pizza dough products they sell at Trader Joe’s: plain dough, herb, and whole wheat. I mostly use the plain. I’ve tried the herb and the whole wheat and thought they were pretty good but not nearly as good as the plain.
2. These are sold in the fridge section and are quite cold when you get them, sometimes even frozen. I think they ship them frozen from the warehouse and thaw them in the store. I find that working the dough is much easier if it has warmed up and risen a little more.
Generally, what I do is take the dough out of the bag and either put it in a big bowl that I rubbed a little olive oil in and let it rise a bit, maybe 2-3 hours. Once it’s come up to room temperature the dough is much easier to work with. This might take an hour or more but is well worth it.
3. One bag of pizza dough is too big for one pizza and too small for two 16″ pizzas. You will end up with mostly crust if you use one bag for one pizza (unless you make a sheet pan pizza). If you stretch it out pretty thin it makes a huge pizza. What I do is either cut off a couple of ounces of the dough to make a big 16″ pizza or cut it in half and make a couple of thinner 12″ pizzas.
Either way, you will need to put the ball in a covered, oiled bowl for 30 minutes before forming. This is after you thaw it out in the 2nd step above. The dough has a “memory” and won’t form a circle otherwise. If you don’t want to make two pizzas in one day, just freeze the second ball.
How does Trader Joe’s Pizza Dough Taste?
You may wonder if the dough tastes any good and I would say the flavor of the pizza dough is pretty good! What is happening is that the longer you let dough (to a certain point) rise, it will develop more flavor and I can imagine they make the dough at least a day ahead of time and maybe longer, but that’s fine. As long as it’s in the fridge section it will slowly rise developing more flavor. I would not keep the dough longer than a day at home on the counter, but in the fridge, you probably have 3 days to use it.
I think one of the key things I see from people is that they mostly undercook their pizza. It should be golden brown, maybe even dark brown around the edges.
That brings up another thing. Pizza dough freezes excellently! If you don’t think you are going to use it or you just want to stock up. Just throw it in the freezer! It should keep for a month or so if you tightly wrap it before you freeze it. You just want to avoid freezer burn.
When you are ready to use it, just take it out of the freezer and you can zap it on defrost in the microwave for a few minutes to thaw it out a bit, don’t overdo it or it will start to cook. Or you can just pull it out of the freezer and put it in a bowl and cover it with plastic wrap or leave it in the bag for a while and let it slowly thaw out, but that might take several hours.
At this point, it is similar to using my own dough. I sometimes use a rolling pin with pre-made dough, but I mostly my hands to flatten out the dough ball.
My typical pizza is 100% Trader Joe’s ingredients. Always use TJ’s dough and I use Quattro Formaggio as my cheese of choice, then use Trader Joe’s organic marinara or Trader Joe’s Arrabbiata sauce as my pizza sauce. It’s not nearly as sweet as their pizza sauce. Then I use a variety of meats but mostly the salami or calabrese salami which has a little heat. Top with a little oregano and you are ready to go!
If you want to make a pan pizza, see my blog post on a quick and easy way to make a pan pizza.. I don’t use a pizza pan but just a sheet pan.
All in all, not bad dough but it’s not the best. There are some issues but it’s way better than pre-made crusts or frozen pizza. Not as good as my homemade dough, but only by a little. I am going to rate this Trader Joe’s Pizza Dough an 8 Bells!
UNBLEACHED ENRICHED FLOUR (WHEAT FLOUR, MALTED BARLEY FLOUR, NIACIN, REDUCED IRON, THIAMINE, MONONITRATE, RIBOFLAVIN, FOLIC ACID), WATER, CANOLA OIL/EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL BLEND, SUGAR, SALT, YEAST, DOUGH CONDITIONER (WHEAT FLOUR, VEGETABLE MONODIGLYCERIDES, ASCORBIC ACID, ENZYMES), CULTURED WHEAT STARCH (FOR ADDED FRESHNESS)