When I make pizzas, I put down a bunch of corn meal on my wooden pizza peel. I then put the shaped dough onto the peel (corn meal), add the toppings, and slide it onto a preheated stone in the oven. This always makes a big mess, as corn meal slides off the peel with the pizza and onto the bottom of the oven (where it then burns). It gets all over the counter and floor. Sometimes I don't put enough down on the stone and the pizza sticks to the peel, so I lift that section and add more corn meal, occasionally leading to a big mound of cornmeal stuck to the crust.

When I take the pizza out of the oven, there is a lot of corn meal left on the stone, so it seems like I'm using too much. This related answer indicates the solution to pizza sticking on the peel is (more) cornmeal, but that's not my problem.

Is there a better method for "applying" corn meal to my pizza peel and/or the dough itself, to make less of a mess? I sprinkle the cornmeal on the peel gently, so most of the mess happens during the transfer from peel to stone and back. I typically use Quaker yellow cornmeal, if that makes a difference.

4 Answers 4


When I first started making pizza at home, I tried cornmeal then tried semolina. Neither worked to my satisfaction

Despite that the box of Reynold's Parchment paper says 'Oven SAfe to 420 degrees F', I tested it at 550deg F for 30 minutes at 550 deg F (the max temp my oven can be set to) on a heated pizza stone with a 10" cast iron skillet on top. The parchment turned a light brown, there was no fire and the structural strength remined (I pulled on the paper to slide the 4+ pound skillet back onto my peel without it tearing)

I ceased using corn meal or semolina from that moment. No more pizza mess in the oven

  • Works perfectly! I still use a little bit of cornmeal (on top of the parchment paper) to provide some texture to the bottom of the crust, but nowhere near as much as I was using. No more mess!
    – mmathis
    Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 19:14

Pro tip: I use parchment paper instead of cornmeal.

  • Let your stone heat for an hour
  • Roll out your dough
  • Put a piece of parchment paper onto the peel, big enough to come between your stone and pie
  • Place the pie onto the stone with the parchment paper still underneath
  • Cook
  • Profit dinner

I use a cornmeal and flour blend. The flour helps significantly with the moisture and prevents sticking while the cornmeal provides a better slide. Id say our ratio (which I eyeball) is approximately 50/50 or 60/40 flour/cornmeal. I have definately noticed if the blend is too heavily cornmeal then the ammount required becomes wasteful, with large quatities in the oven (which scorch), on the peel, on the table, and on the floor.


I used to use cornmeal but I've found that semolina flour works better. You can use a bit less and it's less likely to burn.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.