Hand Tossed vs Handmade: Make the Right Choice in Eating Pizza

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Ever waited long holding a pizza menu card, thinking which one you should try in between a hand-tossed and handmade pizza?

If you’ve gone through a situation like this, you need to know everything about hand-tossed vs handmade pizza so that next time it’s easy to pick one.

Handmade pizza has a thick crust that is crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside. It holds more meat and toppings, and so has more calories. Hand-tossed pizza has a less crunchy but dry crust which is also thin. It holds less meat and toppings, and so provides fewer calories.

Here’s more to know about the difference between these two globally favorite pizzas.

Hand-Tossed vs. Handmade Pizza

Hand-Tossed vs. Handmade

Handmade pizzas are also called pan pizzas. This kind of pizza is for those who require many calories to keep them going throughout the day.

Because in pan pizza, there are more toppings and meat like chicken, beef, or other protein foods. The crust looks golden but is more crunchy. The crust has a loaf bread type of taste and requires less effort to give the dough its shape.

On the contrary, hand-tossed pizza is a better option for those who don’t work harder since it offers fewer calories. The thinner, less crispy, and softer crust is light enough to handle heavy toppings.

Hence the toppings have less protein. They are easier to chew but harder to give a shape as the dough is tossed well into the air, requiring more time for the dough to get its perfectly round shape.

Below we have elaborated on the difference between hand-tossed vs. handmade pan pizza.

Hand-tossed vs Handmade: Temperature and Time Duration

Here is a chart showing the difference in timing and temperature between both types of pizza while cooking.

 TemperatureTime Duration
Hand-tossed275° celsius12-15 minutes
Handmade275° celsius20-25 minutes

1. Difference in Dough

Hand-tossed vs Handmade Temperature and Time Duration

Usually, there is no dissimilarity in the ingredients of both the hand-tossed and handmade pizza. Both require warm water, flour, salt, yeast, and olive oil.

The only difference here is the way of giving the dough a shape. Hand-tossed pizza is rounder than handmade. You need to toss the dough in the air, and it will automatically get more extended and rounded than a handmade pizza.

On the other hand, to give the handmade pizza a round shape, you need to expand the dough using two hands and circle it while expanding.

Also, the hand-tossed dough is given a thin shape, and the handmade dough is thick.

2. Difference in Taste 

There is a slight difference in the taste of the two pizzas. Hand-tossed pizza tastes like flatbread, but Handmade pan pizza tastes like pizza bread. The toppings make huge changes in the taste of pizza.

While handmade pizza can have many toppings over it to have a thick crust, hand-tossed pizza crust is thin, so the used toppings are also light.

Both kinds of pizza are famous since different people have different preferences. While some like Handmade pan pizza, others like hand tossed.

3. Difference in Texture

The most significant difference between a hand-tossed and a handmade pizza is its texture. 

Handmade pizza is generally softer than a hand-tossed pizza. Since it’s cooked inside an oven using oil, it gets crunchier and softer from the inside.

Hand-tossed pizzas also have enough crispiness; however, the crust seems drier and more feathery. Another reason the handmade pizza is softer than the hand tossed is the air bubbles.

Since handmade pan pizza is not tossed in the air like the hand-tossed, the air bubbles stay in it, unlike the hand-tossed ones resulting in a fluffier texture.

4. Difference in Crust

Another visible difference between a hand-tossed and handmade pizza is their crust. While handmade pan pizzas have a fluffier and thicker crust, hand-tossed ones have thinner and drier crusts. This difference is caused by the presence and absence of air bubbles.

The hand-tossed dough is tossed around in the air, which can cause air bubbles to rupture, but the handmade dough is expanded in a circular motion with the hands. Hence, their air bubbles exist. Furthermore, handmade pizza is fluffier, but the hand-tossed is flatter.

5. Difference in Toppings

The best part of a pizza is its toppings, and handmade and hand-tossed pizzas vary in this. The hand-tossed pizza crust is not only thin but also light, and this attribute makes it a bad choice to add heavy toppings to a pan pizza.

So, generally, light toppings are used to make a hand-tossed one. On the contrary, the crust of a handmade pan pizza is wider, making it perfect for customizing.

Yes, you can add heavy and several toppings to a handmade pizza. Moreover, thin or hand-tossed pizza requires less cheese than a thicker handmade pizza.

How To Make Hand-Tossed Pizza Dough

Now that you know the difference between hand-tossed and handmade pizza dough, here is a step-by-step tutorial on how to make it.

  •  Start by mixing 4 ¾ cups of all-purpose flour, salt, sugar, and yeast in a bowl.
  • Then continue adding water and oil and beat the dough at a low speed until it is smooth.
  • Divide it into 4 pieces and let it sit for 2 hours at room temperature.
  • Once the dough has sat out for a bit, place it on a flat surface and sprinkle some flour in.
  • Press the center down with your palm while creating a crust. Use your fingertips to stretch it around and make it bigger.
  • Once it has stretched, pick it up and toss it from your hand to hand to make it larger. But make sure not to poke a hole.

How To Make Handmade Pizza Dough

Handmade pizza dough is a fan favorite, but most don’t know how to make it. So, we present you with a guide on how to make it.

  • Mix all-purpose flour according to your need with 2 teaspoons full of yeast and 1 and the third cup of water together and mix it well.
  • Keep mixing it till it gets doughy, and add a tablespoon of oil of your liking to it. Oil will prevent the crust from tasting soggy. Mix the dough well with oil so that it is distributed accordingly.
  • We suggest adding a bit of salt to increase the taste.
  • Lastly, add a tablespoon of sugar to increase the yeast activity and tenderize the dough. When all is done. Let it sit for an hour for the dough to get big.

Here you go, you have yourself a handmade pizza dough. However, dust cornmeal onto the pan before placing the dough to make it extra fancy. This will make it extra crispy and add a bit of flavor usually found in food chains like Dominoes.


  • Which is better: a hand-tossed or handmade pan? 

Hand-tossed pizza is considered to be better than handmade pizza. Because hand-tossed pizza is tossed in the air, which not only helps it to get a nice round shape but also in removing most air bubbles. Large bubbles can make the toppings slide.

  • What tastes better: hand-tossed or pan? 

People have different preferences regarding liking hand-tossed or handmade pizza. Some people don’t like the taste of bread and prefer hand-tossed, and people who like the taste of bread prefer handmade pizza.

  • Which one is healthier? Between hand-tossed and handmade pizza? 

Handmade pizza has a thicker crust, and so much pizza contains a lot of toppings that include meat. On the other hand, hand-tossed pizza has a thinner crust to which it’s impossible to add many toppings. Hence it also contains less meat. More Meat means more calories, and if you are less active, you should avoid handmade pizza.

Final Words

There’s not much difference between hand-tossed vs handmade pizza. Hence it’s obvious to get confused regarding which one to pick. Some may think a thicker crust is better, and others think a thinner crust is. However, it’s not the only thing that makes the two pizzas different; other factors are included, such as texture, taste, dough, etc.

So the answer to “what’s the difference between a pan pizza and a hand-tossed?” Pan pizza’s crust is fluffier yet crunchier; it tastes greasy and can provide you with more calories than a hand-tossed pizza with a drier yet softer crust with some crispiness, tastes less greasy, and offers fewer calories.

So, if you are a less active person, hand-tossing seems like the right choice for you and if you’re a super active individual, enjoy the handmade pizza without worrying.