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I've tried several pizza recipes but the rim/crust always comes out white, no browning at all. I used all-purpose flour, salt, instant yeast, water and olive oil.

I tried to set the temperature to maximum (230 degree celsius 230°C with my oven) and bake longer but then the crust turned out hard while cheese was starting burning. I also tried to brush the rim with milk, it was better, not white anymore, but still wasn't golden brown as I had expected. Hope someone can help. Thanks very much.

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    Is it a sourdough crust? Acidic doughs won't brown as well. Also, are you keeping the oven closed? Cracking it a little will help to prevent steam from building up, which can affect how well things brown – Joe May 5 at 15:32
  • I used basically flour, salt, yeast, olive oil and water. I did open the oven to check my pizza but it was closed most of the time. Maybe that can help. Thank you very much. – Sean May 5 at 16:12
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    You could add some sugar to the milk and get browning by caramelization. Or bake the base for a while before adding the topping. Unfortunately domestic ovens do not come close to the temperatures of an authentic pizza oven. – Mark Wildon May 5 at 18:38
  • I think adding sugar is a very good idea, thank you very much – Sean May 6 at 5:48
  • What ratio are you using your ingredients in? – Dan Gravell Jun 29 at 13:48
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I recommend finding a recipe that incorporates a small amount of sugar into the dough, and has you bake the pizza at a high heat. Both of these are very helpful in developing the kind of crust you seek.

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You didn't say if you were baking on a pan, a stone, or on a grate. You can also make pizzas on a grill.

Pans that are darker in color will generally brown more effectively.

A baking stone will brown the bottom of the crust but should be pre-heated before you bake the pizza (at least 15-20 minutes, up to an hour). You can buy pizza stones or just use an unglazed ceramic tiles (be sure they aren't painted, treated, or sealed with any chemicals).

You can bake at a higher temp, I have baked pizzas at 550F in the oven or almost 800F on the grill.

Brushing the top of the crust with oil will help with browning.

You can simply bake it longer. Usually the crust will start to burn before the ingredients.

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  • I used a silicone mat putting on an oven rack. Maybe that's the reason why... ? – Sean May 6 at 5:46
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Toast the crust.

I toast the crust under the broiler by itself first until it looks toasty. Not right under; 1 rack down. That also limits soggy crust from too many wet ingredients which I invariably pile on.

My pizza toppings are all cooked thru first or raw veggies. Complete pizza is only in the oven until I see the cheese bubbling.

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As an alternative to adding sugar to the dough you can replace ~2% of the flour with diastatic wheat malt (active malt). The contained enzymes will also improve the dough fermentation and taste. The sugars created in this process will then act as browning agents during the bake.

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