Earlier this week I had a hankering for pizza. (A hankering is a strong desire for something for those of you unfamiliar with my folksy dialect on this fine Friday morning). Anyway, I needed some homemade pizza in my life and I had every intention of making all my delectable ingredients from scratch. I had grand plans for some quinoa crust, fresh made sauce, and pesto that would knock your socks off... but then life happened and things didn't quite go as planned. I actually ended up having to buy all that stuff pre-made and my post was quickly turning from how to make all that stuff to how to find the best options of that stuff in the grocery store when you're pressed for time. To be honest, I didn't hate the switch.
These pizzas were actually awesome. I'm tooting my own horn here, shamelessly. Let me take you through it:
- Bob's Red Mill brand Gluten Free Pizza Crust Mix. I picked the mix because it's made from mostly whole grain brown rice flour along with a mix of a few others AND because it comes with a pack of active dry yeast. It came together so easy, stayed in the fridge while I ran to the gym, AND cooked up to be the perfect thickness. No flippy floppy pizza slices here!
As for my toppings, I grabbed...
- Mezzetta All Natural Authentic Pizza Sauce: the brand isn't really the important thing. Look for a sauce low on added sugars and unnecessary ingredients. You want good quality tomatoes, olive oil, spices, garlic, and maybe some basil. This one even had some good wine in the mix of ingredients. Count me in.
- Pesto: Find a pesto free of bad oils. We don't want any canola, sunflower, safflower, vegetable, etc. We want olive oil, along with basil, nuts, & garlic. Stick as close to that as possible and you'll be good.
- Salsa: I used Frontera medium natural salsa. They focus on good tomatoes, jalapeños, and other fresh ingredients and leave out the added sugars, salts, and binders.
Those were the bases of my three pizzas. Most of the other toppings I already had in the fridge. Work with what you've got and make pizza night your favorite night! These pizzas were low in inflammatory grains and high in flavor. They had healthy carbohydrate, good quality protein, and healthy fats. Maybe a little more cheese than necessary, but it's gains season. Whoever said pizza can't be healthy needs to come over to my house for dinner.
Homemade Pizzas (The Easy Way)
MAKES 3 Small/Medium Pizzas
- 1 package Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free Pizza Crust
- Margharita Pizza Toppings
- Pesto Chicken Pizza Toppings
- Breakfast Pizza Toppings
Prepare pizza crust according to instructions. Let rise for 20 minutes. At this point you can wrap it all up in plastic wrap & refrigerate until later or you can begin making your pizzas... just know that if you refrigerate you need to allow the dough to sit for 30 minutes outside of the refrigerator before baking.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Split dough into thirds. Spread dough onto greased cookie sheets or pizza pans and bake for 9 minutes. Remove and your crusts are ready for topping!
- Gluten Free Pizza Crust
- 1/2 cup pizza sauce
- 1 small tomato, thin sliced
- 5 slices fresh mozzarella cheese
- 4 basil leaves, thin sliced
Spread nearly all of your pizza sauce onto your crust. Lay thin slices of tomato, mozzarella cheese, and basil leaves over the sauce. Drizzle with the remaining sauce and place pizza in the oven to cook for 10-15 minutes or until edges are golden brown & cheese is bubbling. Viola!
Pesto Chicken Pizza
- 1/3-1/2 cup pesto
- 1/2 cup shredded cooked chicken
- 2 Tbsp part skim ricotta cheese
- 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella, provolone, asiago, and parmesan cheeses
Spread half of your pesto onto the pizza crust. Top with half the shredded chicken & dollops of ricotta cheese. Cover with remaining chicken & shredded cheeses. Top with other half of pesto. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until edges of crust are golden & cheese begins to bubble & brown.
- 1/2 cup salsa
- 1/4 cup cooked sausage, sliced or crumbled
- 1/4 bell pepper, thin sliced
- 3 Tbsp shredded mozzarella & provolone cheeses
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 avocado, thin sliced
Spread salsa onto crust. Top with sausage & thin sliced bell peppers. Sprinkle cheese evenly over pizza. Bake for 8-10 minutes. Remove pizza, crack eggs onto pizza & return to the oven for roughly 5 more minutes. Remove, top with sliced avocado, & get eating!
There you have it. 1 blog post, 3 easy pizzas, endless epic pizza nights.
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