BBQ Chicken Pizza

A delicious and mouth-watering BBQ Chicken Pizza with step-by-step photos! Recipe includes Homemade Pizza Dough, Homemade Barbecue Sauce, as well as instructions for making a cast iron pizza!

bbq chicken pizza with fresh cilantro

BBQ Chicken Pizza

I have a soft spot for barbecue chicken (called rotisserie chicken in most other countries), and I happen to think they make for the best chicken sandwiches. When time is tight and I am at the supermarket trying to figure out what to make for lunch, a barbecue chicken and a baguette is sometimes all that I need.

And for those moments when we have leftover barbecue chicken or roast chicken, they are perfect on this BBQ Chicken Pizza.

bbq chicken pizza with pineapple and cilantro

California Pizza Kitchen

My BBQ Chicken Pizza is inspired by my visits to the California Pizza Kitchen in Chicago many, many years ago when I used to travel there for work.

I loved the combination of barbecue sauce and chicken on a pizza, and I especially loved the addition of pineapple!

I have made this BBQ Chicken Pizza at home many times over the past years, mostly because it is a combination not available where I live, but also because it happens to be a pizza with all of my favourite ingredients!

bbq chicken pizza on white table

Homemade Barbecue Sauce

You can use your favourite shop-bought barbecue sauce in this recipe, but I like to make my own homemade barbecue sauce, not least because you can control the sweetness and spiciness to your own liking.

bbq chicken pizza in cast iron pan

Cast Iron Pizza

When making homemade pizza, I like to use a cast iron pan or cast iron skillet. The heat from the cast iron produces a pizza crust which is crispy on the base and around the edges, and which is bread-like in taste and texture.

Placing the dough onto the pre-heated cast iron pan will also help it to rise quickly, creating a thick, soft and chewy pizza base.

The photos here prove how beautifully puffed the dough can be when cooked in a cast iron skillet!

bbq chicken pizza in black cast iron pan

Cast Iron Pizza Recipe

My cast iron pizza recipe follows the same cooking method as that which I use to make No-Knead Bread in a cast iron pan.

You need to preheat your cast iron pan until it is very hot – I find 220°/430°F to be a good temperature for cooking pizza.

I shape the dough on a sheet of baking paper and then proceed to top the pizza dough while it is still on the baking paper.

The baking paper is then used to transfer the prepared pizza to the searingly-hot cast iron pan.

homemade bbq chicken pizza in cast iron skillet

Cast Iron Skillet Pizza

When making a cast iron pizza, choose a cast iron pan, cast iron skillet or cast iron pizza pan which is about 26 cm/10 inches in diameter. You could use a larger sized pan, but you may need to adjust the dough recipe accordingly.

Ideally, the inside of the pan should be proper cast iron and NOT have an enamel coating. It should be fine if the outside of the pan has an enamel coating.

For reference, cast iron pans made by Staub generally do not have an enamel coating on the inside, which is why the interior is always black.

In contrast, cast iron pans made by Le Creuset tend to have an enamel coating on the inside, which you can tell by the lighter colour and smoother/shinier surface. However, many of the Le Creuset skillets have a cast iron surface on the inside.

For this pizza recipe, it is best to choose a cast iron pan which is not very tall, such as a cast iron skillet, braising pan or casserole dish. This is to reduce the risk of burning yourself as the pans will get very hot once they are heated at high temperature.

You could also use a cast iron pizza pan which is round and flat. However, I have found that the pizzas made on these flat pizza pans do not rise and puff as much as the cast iron pans; the heat from the sides of the pan also help the pizza to puff up nicely.

Alternatives to Cast Iron

If you don’t own any cast iron cookware, a metal baking tray or stainless steel roasting pan is the next best thing. You won’t achieve the same results as with cast iron, but it will still be very good.

Simply follow the instructions in the recipe as for cast iron.

bbq chicken pizza with fresh herbs on table

How to Make BBQ Chicken Pizza

Step 1

To make a homemade pizza dough, please see my recipe with step-by-step photos here. My recipe and instructions for the pizza dough are otherwise included in the recipe below.

You could also use a good quality, shop-bought pizza dough as the base.

step by step photos for making pizza dough
{Homemade Pizza Dough recipe with step-by-step photos}

Step 2

To make a homemade barbecue sauce, simply mix all of the ingredients together in a small saucepan. Heat gently over medium heat, and let it simmer for about 5 minutes. Taste for seasoning.

homemade barbecue sauce in saucepan

Step 3

Preheat the oven to 220°C/430°F.

Place a metal baking tray in the middle of the oven.

If you are using a cast iron pan or other pizza tray, also place this in the oven (on the metal tray) to preheat.

Step 4

Spread the sauce onto the pizza base, leaving a small border around the edges.

Next sprinkle over the grated cheese, followed by the rest of the toppings.

pizza toppings on homemade pizza dough

Step 5

Use the baking paper to transfer the prepared pizza onto the cast iron pan or pizza tray. Carefully trim the baking paper so that it does not catch fire in the oven.

cast iron pizza

Step 6

Bake the pizza for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the cheese has fully melted, and the edges of the pizza are golden brown.

Garnish with coriander/cilantro. Serve immediately.

bbq chicken pizza in cast iron
Print

BBQ Chicken Pizza

5 from 7 reviews

  • Resting Time: 1 hour
  • Author: Thanh | Eat, Little Bird
  • Prep Time: 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 30 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 1 pizza
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American

A delicious and mouth-watering BBQ Chicken Pizza with step-by-step photos! Recipe includes Homemade Pizza Dough, Homemade Barbecue Sauce, as well as instructions for making a cast iron pizza!

Ingredients

For the Pizza Dough

  • 250 g (1 2/3 cup) strong white bread flour
  • 1 teaspoon instant yeast
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
  • 2 teaspoons caster sugar
  • 150 ml (1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon) warm water
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

For the Barbecue Sauce

For the Toppings

  • 200 g (1 cup) mozzarella cheese, grated (or other cheese for melting)
  • 1 cup barbecue chicken, rôtisserie chicken or roast chicken, shredded or sliced
  • 1 green capsicum (bell pepper) or fresh jalopenos, thinly sliced
  • 1 small red onion, thinly sliced
  • fresh pineapple, chopped
  • coriander (cilantro), for garnish

Instructions

To make the pizza dough

  1. Place the flour, instant yeast, salt and sugar into a large mixing bowl. I use an electric stand mixer to make bread, but you can also make the bread by hand.
  2. Measure the water into a measuring jug, and add the olive oil.
  3. Lightly mix together the dry ingredients.
  4. Slowly add the liquid ingredients until the mixture comes together into a dough. You may not need all of the liquid, or you may need to add a bit extra.
  5. Knead the dough for about 15 to 20 minutes. I generally do this on medium speed with the stand mixer.
  6. The dough should be ready when it is smooth and elastic in texture.
  7. Lightly oil a clean, large mixing bowl.
  8. Place the dough into the bowl, cover with a clean tea towel, and place the bowl somewhere warm for the dough to double in size. This should take 1 to 2 hours. (See Kitchen Notes below)
  9. Once the dough has doubled in size, punch it back to knock out the air.
  10. Knead the dough gently (just a few turns) until it soft and smooth again.

For the Barbecue Sauce

  1. Mix together all of the ingredients in a small saucepan.
  2. Simmer gently on medium-high heat for a few minutes.
  3. Taste for seasoning.

To prepare the pizza

  1. Preheat the oven to 220°C/430°F.
  2. Place a large metal baking tray to preheat in the middle of the oven. If you are using a special pizza tray, pizza stone or cast-iron pan, also place this into the cold oven to preheat for at least 15 minutes.
  3. Transfer the dough onto a sheet of baking paper. 
  4. Gently stretch the dough into your desired shape, and which will fit your pizza tray or cast-iron pan. 
  5. Stretch the dough by pushing from the centre outwards, creating a thick crust as you do so. As you stretch the dough, it may shrink back a little. Let the dough shrink or relax after each stretch, before you continue stretching to your desired shape. The dough will rise a little upon baking, so keep the thickness of the dough in mind.
  6. Spread the dough with the barbecue sauce, leaving a small border. I generally use about 6-8 tablespoons of barbecue sauce, but use as much or as little as you like.
  7. Sprinkle over the freshly grated mozzarella.
  8. Add the sliced chicken, followed by the remaining toppings.

To cook the pizza

  1. When you are ready to bake, transfer the pizza – together with the baking paper – onto the pizza tray or cast-iron pan. Be careful – the pizza tray or cast-iron pan will be very hot!
  2. Trim off any excess baking paper, otherwise it might catch in the oven.
  3. Bake the pizza for 15-20 minutes, or until the cheese has fully melted and the edges of the pizza are lightly golden.
  4. Garnish with coriander (cilantro).
  5. Serve immediately.

Kitchen Notes

MAKING MULTIPLE PIZZAS
* If you plan to multiply the recipe to make more pizzas, I recommend proofing the dough separately (and not as one large piece of dough). This will allow each piece of dough to trap more carbon dioxide as it is proofing, which will result in a lighter dough.
* I also recommend making the full recipe for Easy Tomato Sauce and freezing any leftovers in a zip-lock freezer bag for future pizzas, or even as a pasta sauce.

DIFFERENT TYPES OF FLOUR
For Swiss readers: I use Zopfmehl (or farine pour tresse) when making bread and enriched dough.

DIFFERENT TYPES OF YEAST
* Please note that there is a difference between instant yeast (also called instant dried yeast or fast-action dried yeast) and dried yeast (also called active dry yeast). If you are not sure what type of yeast you have, please check the packaging for instructions on how to use the yeast.
* With instant yeast, you can add it directly to the flour mixture without having to activate it first.
* With dried yeast, you will need to activate it first (usually in some warm liquid).

PROOFING THE DOUGH
Dough needs a warm environment for the yeast to activate and cause the dough to rise. If you don’t have a warm place in your home, try one of the following ideas:
* In the oven with the oven light switched on (works only for some ovens).
* In the oven with a tray of boiling water on the bottom shelf.
* In the oven at a low temperature of about 25-30°C (77-86°F).

OVEN TEMPERATURES
All recipes on this website state temperatures for a regular oven (i.e. a conventional oven without fan). If you have a convection oven with a fan, please consult the manufacturer’s handbook on how to adjust the temperature and baking time accordingly.

CONVERSIONS
To convert from cups to grams, and vice-versa, please see this handy Conversion Chart for Basic Ingredients.

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment below and share your photos by tagging @eatlittlebird on Instagram and using #eatlittlebird

Shop this recipe

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Recipe rating

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

7 comments

  1. Isabella 23 June 2022

    I’ve made your pizza dough recipe several times with much success. So I was very excited when you posted this recipe because I love barbecue chicken pizzas! The flavors were amazing, your barbecue sauce recipe is delicious. I have a Lodge cast iron pizza pan which makes excellent pizzas. I definitely agree that using cast iron at home makes the best pizzas!

    Reply
  2. Kate 1 August 2022

    Omg this recipe was so good!! I love bbq chicken pizzas but never thought to make it myself. I followed all of your steps and even baked the pizza in a cast-iron skillet. Best pizza of my life!

    Reply
  3. Pete 3 August 2022

    Great pizza recipe! I’ve used your pizza dough recipe before but never tried making it in a cast iron pan. It made such a big difference! No looking back now. Thanks for a great recipe as always.

    Reply
  4. Amelia Miller 14 August 2022

    I love your chicken pizza. Looks very tasty. I will definitely try. Thank you.

    Reply
  5. Sue 24 August 2022

    I am in love with this pizza combo! It was so delicious.

    Reply
  6. Shawn 29 August 2022

    Great recipe, we love this combo. My family remarked over and over that this was the best pizza I had ever made. Thank you so much for sharing!

    Reply
  7. Wendy 29 August 2022

    I have been making homemade pizza for years, so I was excited to try this recipe and your method with a cast iron skillet. May I just say that this is the absolute best crust I have ever made!!! And the homemade bbq sauce with chicken was just 10/10. Thank you for this recipe!

    Reply