New Orleans' Beer Infused Pizza

January 17, 2013

Chef Mark Bello from The Pizza School shares one of his favorite Super Bowl recipes - beer infused pizza.  The pizza dough is made by combining lager, a style of beer, with the flour, water, and yeast.  The beer adds a depth of flavor that pairs deliciously with the pizza toppings.  The recipe recommends topping your pizza with bell peppers, basil and red onion.

Recipe by Mark Bello 

Prep time:  20 minutes
Bake time: 10-15 minutes depending on your oven and desired doneness
Preheat: Oven to 500ºF


1 risen ball of Samuel Adams Boston Lager Infused Dough (approx. 16 oz.)
5 oz. (about 1/2 cup) your favorite pizza sauce
1 Tablespoon of your favorite Louisiana style hot sauce!
About 1/2 cup (2.5 oz.) diced yellow bell pepper
About 1/2 cup (2.5 oz.) diced red onion
About 1 cup loosely packed (4 oz.) shredded whole milk mozzarella
2 Tablespoons (1/2 oz.) grated cheese (i.e.: example parmesan or Romano cheese)
6 leaves fresh basil sliced into fine strands
Extra virgin olive oil plus more for oiling your cookie sheet, pizza pan or screen plus more for drizzling on finished pizza


1.     Mix pizza sauce and hot sauce. Set aside.

2.     Stretch dough to desired diameter (12” thicker, 14” thinner), and lay on a lightly oiled cookie sheet, pizza pan or screen.

3.     Swirl on sauce mixture to about 1/2” from the border of crust.

4.     In this order: evenly distribute mozzarella, then yellow pepper, then red onion all to about 1/2” from the border of crust.

5.     Evenly sprinkle on the grated cheese to the very border of the crust.

6.     Bake for 10-15 minutes until your toppings are bubbling and the crust is golden brown.

7.     Out of the oven, add basil and a light drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. Let rest a few minutes, and then cut, serve and enjoy.

NOTE: The colors on the New Orleans Big Game pizza: red onion (purple) + basil (green) + yellow pepper (gold) = colors representative of New Orleans and Mardi Gras.

Pairing Notes from Samuel Adams Brewery Manager Jennifer Glanville:

Boston Lager is a perfect pairing for this championship pizza. Complex and balanced – the sweetness of the tomato will bring out the brew’s caramel malt character. Slight floral and a sweet citrus notes from the Noble hops are perfectly contrasted by the tangy onion and herbal basil notes. The addition of hot sauce finishes this pairing with a little heat that is balanced by a complex and lingering finish.


Recipe by Mark Bello

NOTE: Makes:  Two crusts to be dressed and baked on a cookie sheet or pizza pan; For a thicker crust, stretch to 12” and cook on cookie sheet, pizza pan or pizza screen; For a thinner crust, stretch to 14” and cook on cookie sheet, pizza pan or pizza screen

Prep time: 15 minutes
Rise time:Between 1-2 hours in a warm spot (about 70ºF-80F)
Bake time:10-15 minutes depending on your oven, toppings and desired doneness
Preheat:Oven to 500ºF


Approx. 3½ cups (20 oz.) unbleached all-purpose flour plus more for dusting
1 packet instant yeast aka: highly active or bread machine yeast
1 Tablespoon (.65 oz.) fine granulation salt
1 Tablespoon (.55 oz.) extra virgin olive oil plus more for greasing your rising container and oiling your cookie sheet, pizza pan or screen
12 oz. bottle of Samuel Adams Boston Lager warmed up to 120ºF-130ºF


1.     Warm the beer to 120ºF-130ºF (warming the beer properly means your yeast will activate properly). Warm the bottle in a bowl of very warm (not boiling water) or by running it under hot water from the tap. A thermometer insures success – if you don’t have one handy, the beer should feel very warm (not too hot) to the touch.

2.     In a 5 quart or larger bowl, combine flour, yeast, salt and oil.

3.     Add beer to flour mixture, and stir with a fork (not stirring with your hands just yet – it’s too sticky at first) until the dough is lumpy. Then, go in with your hands. The dough will now still be a little sticky, so gradually add flour as you knead* to the point that the finished dough should be just slightly tacky and elastic. To tell when the dough is done, periodically poke it and when the dough gently springs back after you poke it, it is done. Don’t worry if it is not perfectly smooth – don’t overknead it! *kneading: press down, push, fold, repeat.

4.     Your finished dough, if you have a scale, will weigh right around 2 pounds (30-34 oz.). Break into two equal pieces – use a scale or eyeball it.

5.     Ball each piece up and place each in a separate airtight container lightly greased with olive oil. Each container needs to be at least a quart in size to allow for each dough ball to double in size (deli quart containers work great for this).

6.     Set dough aside to rise in a warm location, about 70ºF-80F is good. After dough has expanded/up to doubled in size (about 1-2 hours), gently remove from container and stretch to fit on a lightly greased 12” or 14” cookie sheet, pizza pan or pizza screen.

7.     Dress according to which football team pizza you favor, and bake in a 500ºF preheated oven until your crust and toppings are to your desired doneness (about 10 to 15 minutes).

8.     Out of the oven, allow a few minutes to cool. Then cut, serve and enjoy.

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