Quick and Easy Homemade Pita Bread

Quick and Easy Homemade Pita Bread

The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

Prep: 45 mins
Cook: 15 mins
Rising Time: 90 mins
Total: 2 hrs 30 mins
Servings: 10 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
177 Calories
2g Fat
35g Carbs
5g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 10
Amount per serving
Calories 177
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 2g 2%
Saturated Fat 0g 1%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 108mg 5%
Total Carbohydrate 35g 13%
Dietary Fiber 1g 5%
Total Sugars 1g
Protein 5g
Vitamin C 0mg 0%
Calcium 8mg 1%
Iron 2mg 11%
Potassium 55mg 1%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Soft and pillowy pita bread is easy to make at home and will make all the difference in how you appreciate freshly baked bread. Although store-bought pitas are extremely convenient, once you've made a batch of these little rounds it's unlikely you'll buy them bagged again. The recipe requires very few ingredients, and while the dough rests you can get on with the rest of the meal. You'll be rewarded with delicious, puffy pockets that can be stuffed with vegetables, falafel, or meats, or used as a scoop for saucy preparations or dips like hummus or baba ganoush. Use this bread for sandwiches, homemade mini pizzas, or just to enjoy with butter or spreads.

Pita bread dates back thousands of years and is a staple in the cuisines of the Middle East and Mediterranean. Just as corn or potatoes appear on American tables every day, so does pita bread in countries like Turkey, Israel, Greece, Lebanon, and Egypt. Traditionally baked in very hot brick ovens where people could take their homemade dough, pitas can be made in the oven or on the stovetop.

The dough can be made ahead, and it also freezes nicely for later use. The secret for puffy pitas lies in the temperature of the oven, so don't rush the process—allow it to be piping hot before placing your dough.

2:29

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"Though it's simple, there’s a fair amount of hands-on time during the cooking process. Because you’re cooking directly on a piping hot baking stone already in your oven, it's challenging getting the rolled-out pitas into the oven safely. A few lost their round shape when transferring, but that's the beauty of homemade pita...a little imperfection." —Carrie Parente

Quick and Easy Homemade Pita Bread Tester Image
A Note From Our Recipe Tester

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 cups waterdivided; at about 110 F

  • 2 teaspoons dry active yeast

  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar

  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, divide; plus more for dusting

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, plus more for greasing

Steps to Make It

Make the Dough

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Quick and Easy Homemade Pita Bread ingredients

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  2. Pour the yeast into 1/4 cup of warm water. Add the sugar, mix well, and let stand for 10 minutes.

    yeast and water mixture

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  3. Sift the flour alongside the salt into a bowl.

    sift flour and salt in a bowl

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  4. Form a well in the center. Pour in the yeast mixture, the remaining cup of warm water, and 1 tablespoon of olive oil.

    flour, yeast mixture and oil in a bowl

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  5. Begin to mix with your hand, a wooden spoon, or the dough hook of a standing mixer to form a dough.

    mix pita dough in a bowl

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  6. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead for about 10 to 15 minutes, or use the machine and dough hook, until the dough is smooth and soft but not sticky. If needed, add more flour until the dough comes together nicely.

    dough ball on flour surface

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  7. Oil a large bowl and place the dough in the bowl. Turn to coat the entire surface with oil. Cover with a damp cloth and put the dough in a warm, draft-free place for 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until doubled in size.

    dough rising in a bowl

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

Shape and Cook the Pita

  1. Preheat the oven to 475 F. Place a heavy baking sheet or baking stone on the lowest rack of the oven. With the help of a rolling pin, roll the dough out, then fold and roll again. Close like a book, roll again, and close again, repeating the process a few times to get the air bubbles out of the dough. Shape the dough in a rectangle of about 9x12 inches and about 1/2-inch thick.

    knead dough with hands

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  2. Divide the dough into 10 pieces and cover with a dampened towel.

    dough balls on a wood surface, covered with damp towel

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  3. Flour your work surface and rolling pin. Roll and turn each ball as you would shape a pie crust. Each pita should be about 1/4-inch thick and about 7 inches in diameter.

    roll out the dough balls

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  4. Sandwich each dough circle between floured cloths and let them rest while you roll the remaining dough balls.

    rolled out dough pieces between floured towels

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  5. Lightly sprinkle the hot baking sheet or baking stone with flour. Place as many pitas as will comfortably fit.

    dough pieces on a baking sheet

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  6. Bake for about 5 minutes or until they just begin to show some color, carefully flipping them about halfway through.

    baked pita bread on a baking sheet

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  7. Remove from the oven and cover with a clean kitchen towel until cooled. Repeat the baking process with the remaining dough. Serve with your favorites dishes, and store in a bread bag for up to three days.

    Quick and Easy Homemade Pita Bread

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  8. Enjoy!

Can I Make Pitas on the Stove?

Yes. And it's very easy too:

  • Once your balls are flattened and ready for cooking, heat up a cast-iron skillet or another heavy bottom skillet over medium-high heat.
  • To check the temperature, add a few drops of water. If they sizzle right away, your skillet is ready.
  • Grease the skillet with a tiny amount of olive oil—carefully use a paper towel lightly dampened in olive oil and spread the oil around.
  • Place each round of dough on the skillet and allow to cook for 30 seconds.
  • Turn and allow the dough to cook for 1 to 2 minutes.
  • Turn again and allow 1 to 2 more minutes or until it puffs up nicely.

Careful With Your Very Hot Oven

To get the pita into the oven safely, remove the top racks before preheating the oven. That way, when you place the pitas into the oven and then when flipping and removing them, you have enough space to maneuver and don't risk burning your hands.