This easy focaccia pizza is inspired by the classic Italian bread, and uses store-bought pizza dough for a quick and easy dinner!
Guys, this isn’t traditional focaccia— it’s a cheater recipe.
But it’s a really delicious cheater recipe!
I’ve been making this focaccia pizza over and over again, switching up the toppings for whatever I’m in the mood for.
This focaccia pizza uses store-bought pizza dough for an easy a twist on traditional Italian focaccia bread, and is topped with cheese and fresh cherry tomatoes (or whatever your favorite toppings are).
What is Focaccia bread?
Traditional focaccia is an Italian yeast bread.
The dough is rubbed with olive oil and is often coated in herbs, spices, or olives.
Focaccia is easy to recognize from the signature dimples in the dough.
Simply looking at focaccia makes me incredibly hungry– it has all my favorite flavors rolled into one bread.
Want to watch someone make traditional focaccia? Watch Samin Nosrat in this clip from Salt Fat Acid Heat.
Why Use Pizza Dough Instead of Traditional Focaccia?
Because focaccia– like a lot of breads– takes time. More time than I want to spend on a busy weeknight.
Happily, focaccia has a texture very similar to an extra-thick pizza.
Since focaccia’s texture is so pizza-like, you can make an easy, non-traditional focaccia with pre-made pizza dough.
I won’t claim that this focaccia pizza will taste exactly like your Italian grandma made it from scratch– but hey, I don’t have an Italian grandma, and I don’t always have time for long bakes.
This focaccia pizza is DELICIOUS.
And it’s FAST.
Is This Focaccia Pizza Similar to Deep Dish Pizza?
Deep dish pizza is made like pie, with the dough engulfing loads and loads of cheese.
This pizza has a thick, flavorful crust and is light on toppings.
It’s a celebration of bread, with the cheese as a tasty complement.
And actually, you can skip the cheese if you really want to. It’ll just be a little less pizza-like.
What Kind of Dough Should I Use?
Use a traditional, “classic-style” pizza dough.
I used a pizza dough that was already rolled out into a rectangle, and then I doubled the dough over on itself.
Place the dough into an oiled cast-iron pan, folding it over as needed to make it fit.
Next, add a little more oil to the top of the dough, and press into the dough with your fingers to create dimples.
Need a cast iron pan? I used this Lodge enameled cast iron skillet.
Add Cheese + Toppings to Focaccia Pizza
Next, add some cheese.
My favorite cheese to use with this pizza is mozzarella— I typically use a ball of mozzarella and tear it apart, but mozzarella “pearls” (like in the photo below) will work too.
Don’t like mozzarella? This focaccia pizza is also delicious with freshly grated Parmesan.
In this recipe, I used cherry tomatoes and kalamata olives, but feel free to swap the toppings for whatever your favorite pizza toppings are.
Topping Idea: My absolute favorite way to eat this pizza is to top it with slow-roasted tomatoes.
Roast the tomatoes ahead of time, and pack them in olive oil. Then, use the tomato-infused olive oil on the pizza instead of unflavored oil.
Serving Focaccia Pizza
Bake the pizza until the crust is golden.
The olive oil will help the crust crisp up, and if you like, you can slide the whole pizza out of the pan onto a serving tray or board.
If you have leftovers, this pizza will keep for a few days in the fridge. Store it in foil, and then reheat it in the oven.
3 Days (Leftovers)
- 1 10″ or 12″ pizza dough (NOT pre-cooked, dough should be “classic” style, not thin-crust)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 4 ounces mozzarella, torn into small pieces (or use mini mozzarella "pearl" balls) Just over half of one standard-size fresh mozzarella ball.
Toppings: (Can Be Swapped For Your Favorite Toppings)
- ½ cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- 6 olives, sliced (Kalamata, black, or green)
- Preheat oven to 425°F.
- Rub a cast iron pan with half the oil.
- Unroll the store-bought dough, and stretch it with your fingers until it's approximately double the size of the pan. Fold the dough in half, doubling it, and press it into the pan. Fold over the edges of the dough as needed.
- Drizzle the remaining oil onto the dough, and use your hands to spread the oil across the dough. Use your fingers to push dimples into the dough.
- Add the cheese to the dough, and top with the tomatoes and olives (or your preferred toppings).
- Bake about 25 minutes, or until the crust is golden.
- Allow the pizza to cool slightly before slicing and serving.
- Leftovers:This pizza is best served right away, but any leftovers can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 days. Reheat on a baking sheet under the broiler until the cheese melts.