How Long Does Pizza Dough Last In The Fridge?

There is a reason pizzas are universally loved, ranging from the sweet-savory taste to the ultimate satisfaction it gives. While many would rather order a pizza from their favorite restaurant, others have resorted to making it at home.

However, the crucial part of a pizza is the dough, and the fresher the dough the better the pizza. This gives rise to the need to keep them fresh and make them last longer. 

Although it is generally known that the refrigerator helps preserve any kind of food, the question in mind is – how long can the pizza dough last in the fridge?

If properly stored a typical pizza dough can last in the fridge for at least 3-5 days but it’s always best to put it to use within 48 hours to get a better crispy effect from the dough. However, your pizza dough has a better chance of lasting in the fridge than on the countertop. 

If you want to find out all you need to know about pizza dough and how long it can last in the fridge, don’t worry we’ve got you covered.

How To Properly Store Pizza Dough In The Fridge

The fridge can help slow down the fermentation process which is great for the dough but you need to understand that for the pizza dough to last longer in the refrigerator it needs to be properly stored. 

Here’s the guide you need to successfully preserve pizza dough in the fridge;

1. Put the dough in a container

A lot of people prefer using a large mixing bowl because it is easily accessible and it provides enough space for the dough while others use a self-sealing plastic bowl instead. However, whichever you choose to use is fine as long as it is clean and dry.

Be sure not to use a flat plate as this can leave the dough exposed and we don’t want that.

2. Lightly apply oil on top of the dough

Before you place the dough in the fridge, you need to lightly cover the dough with oil. The motive is to protect the dough from some harmful bacteria.

Any vegetable oil or clarified oil can be used in this regard. 

3. Cover the bowl

If you are using a mixing bowl you’d want to cover the bowl with a plastic wrap. Firmly covering the pizza dough is essential to keep moisture in and prevent the dough from being exposed.

4. Leave pizza dough in the fridge

Now that you have ensured the dough was properly kept in the fridge, you can leave it to sit there for a few days whilst still checking on it from time to time.

How Long Does Pizza Dough Last In The Fridge
Image: @TatianaMara via Twenty20

How Long Does Pizza Dough Last In The Fridge?

When one unintentionally mixes too much pizza dough, you begin to wonder if it’s safe to leave them in the fridge for a few more days. Well, leaving them in the fridge is a great way of preserving and imparting more vital flavor to them, but for how long?

Keeping your pizza dough in the fridge can prolong its lifespan for an average of 3-5 days, but if it’s possible ensure to put the dough to use in 2 days as this is the best time to get a better crust. Once you’re set to make use of your pizza dough, bring it out of the refrigerator and leave it to warm up at room temperature before you begin.

Apart from preserving pizza dough, leaving them in the fridge is of significance as it slows down the pace of fermentation and this improves the texture and taste of the pizza. It is also best to always check on the pizza dough from time to time.

However, after a maximum of three days, the pizza dough hardens and becomes a bit difficult to work with. This is around the time when the dough begins to lose its flavor and texture and this doesn’t mean they can’t still be used. But if pizza dough stays more than 5 days in the refrigerator, it should not be used because the quality is now bad and a lot of harmful bacteria must have formed in them

How To Know If Pizza Dough Is Bad

When Pizza dough gets bad that equally means that they are no longer safe for consumption as it is well past its shelf life. The only thing to do is to toss it away in the bin.

Here are the ways to know if your pizza dough is bad;

1. A foul smell is the first thing you’ll get

When inspecting the dough, and you notice an awful smell this can indicate that the dough is bad. This is a result of the dough fermenting for too long. If the pizza dough smells rancid then it is time to throw it away.

Although fermenting pizza dough doesn’t always have a good smell, some say it smells like beer or alcohol, it’s best to be able to differentiate between the odors. 

2. An obvious mold growth 

This is the best indicator that the pizza dough has gotten bad. Once you notice some molds on your dough it means that a lot of bacteria has formed on it, Do not think cutting off the molds will make the dough safe enough for consumption as you might be putting yourself at risk of getting sick.

The best thing is to throw it away at this point. 

3. The texture won’t be as good as it was

Bad pizza dough is expected to lose its elasticity, it becomes very difficult to work with because of how slimy, dry, or flaky it has gotten over time. You’ll find it hard to mold it into a ball or roll it into a typical pizza base. 

Frequently Asked Questions 

Can you refrigerate pizza dough after it rises?

Yes, you can refrigerate pizza dough after the first rise. You should store the dough appropriately, by covering it in the refrigerator for 3-5 days. Make sure to use a large container to give room for the dough to rise. When you are ready to use the dough, let it warm up at room temperature so it’s easier to work with.

Will pizza dough rise after being frozen?

Yes, it will rise. The yeast in the dough is usually dormant when it is frozen but becomes active and continues fermenting when the dough begins to defrost. How much the dough will rise after freezing depends on how much yeast was used in the dough and how long it was left to rise before freezing.

Can I use the same dough for bread and pizza?

Bread and pizza dough use similar core ingredients. So yes, you can use bread dough for pizza and vice-versa. Both of them consist of yeast, sugar, salt, and warm water to activate the yeast. The only thing is if you want to make pizza, ensure to roll the dough thinly for a sleek crust.


Leaving pizza dough in the fridge is one of the best ways to keep it safe. As it also enables the pizza dough to attain a better taste and crispy texture.

However, it is best to ensure that the dough is appropriately kept in the fridge in an airtight or sealed container.

Pizza dough can last in the fridge for about  3-5 days if properly stored. Allow the dough to warm up a little at room temperature before preparing it as this will the dough rise better. You can tell if the dough is bad by the smell, the texture, and visible color patches on it.