Who doesn’t love pizza? If you make your own from home, you can choose healthier options & have less guilt. I am all about simplifying cooking if we can. Below is a basic pizza recipe, with the healthier options listed next to it. I am including options for Gluten Free (GF), Keto, Vegetarian(V), Vegan (VG), & Paleo.
Let’s start with the base, the crispy crust that holds it all together. With the crust, you can go a few ways: You can make homemade pizza with store-bought dough; use pre-baked crusts or even tortillas for personal pizzas; or make your own.
Here are some good swaps:
- Whole wheat pizza dough (V/VG). Trader Joe’s has a ready-to-bake option that is very good. Or make your own from scratch with this recipe.
- Almond Flour Tortillas or Almond Flour Crust (GF/ Paleo/V) thin & crispy style
- Cauliflower Crust (GF/Paleo/Keto/V)– this brand Is Paleo & Keto, not all cauliflower crusts are, read the ingredients if buying a different brand.
- Friendly to all – this crust is GF/Paleo/V/VG/Keto (3g net carb)
This is not an all-inclusive list but gets you started. Cook crusts as instructed on the package. Tortillas just top with toppings & bake as instructed in the recipe below.
There are many pre-made pizza sauces. You can also make your own, use pesto sauces, or a simple olive oil & garlic sauce.
- Homemade recipe that is low carb & low sugar (GF/Paleo/V/VG/Keto)
- Healthy premade options are always good to keep on hand to make a quick healthy pizza, including:
- Rao’s Marinara Sauce: (GF/V/VG/Paleo)
- Primal Kitchen Tomato Basil (GF/Paleo/Keto/V/VG)
- Muir Glen Pizza Sauce (GF/Paleo/V/VG)
Use lighter cheese with big flavor and fewer calories, good examples are:
- Part Skim Mozzarella
- Fresh Mozzarella
- Sharp Provolone
For Vegan, a good alternative cheese to use is Miyokos Mozzarella
This is a great way to use up what’s in the refrigerator. There are no rules – whatever you got, toss it on.
Mushrooms, spinach (leafy greens), peppers, onions, broccoli, and cauliflower are good choices.
Meat lovers don’t have to lose out. Swap out fatty meats like pepperoni & pork sausage for thinly sliced (leaner) cuts of salami, turkey bacon, chicken sausage, grilled/baked chicken, and shrimp. Try to use organic meats when you can.
Flavor combinations to try:
- Spinach, onions, pizza sauce, and fresh mozzarella
- Broccoli, red onion, pizza sauce, and turkey bacon
- Roasted butternut squash, olive oil & garlic sauce, fresh kale, and Provolone
- Grilled chicken, roasted red pepper, pesto sauce, fresh mozzarella & fresh basil
- Zucchini, pizza sauce, fennel, and chicken sausage
- Arugula, pesto sauce, red onion, thin cut salami, and red pepper flakes
- Portabello mushroom, pizza sauce, roasted cauliflower, and provolone & parmesan cheese
Putting it all together, make your pizza:
- Choose a crust option from above (bake as instructed)
- ½ cup sauce (more or less to your preference)
- 2 Veggie Toppings from above – enough to cover the pizza
- 1 meat topping from above (if using)
- 1- ½ cups of grated cheese (more or less to your preference)
- Heat the oven to 450 degrees. Best to heat the oven 30 minutes prior to baking. Putting in the pan/stone you plan on cooking your pizza on ahead of time to heat up, makes for a better crust.
- Prep the pizza on a pan/board that is easy to slide onto a stone/pan in the oven. Put the sauce in the center of the crust and use the back of a spoon to spread it evenly across the surface, stopping approximately ½ inch from the edges.
- Arrange the Vegetable and/or meat toppings on top of the sauce. Use whatever amounts you would like, try to have a 2:1 Vegetable to Meat ratio.
- Top with shredded cheese.
- Pick up the pizza and slide it onto the heated stone or pan in the oven. Pizza is done when the crust is golden brown and the cheese is bubbling, approximately 5 to 12 minutes, depending on your choice of crust.
- Let it cool slightly and enjoy!