I’m certain you’re asking how and hoping that this is true. Is there such a thing as healthy pizza?
It depends on the way we are defining healthy. The pizza recipe I am about to share with you is healthy for several reasons:
It’s completely organic.
It’s loaded with fresh veggies.
It’s light on the cheese (but does not use light cheese).
It’s a whole wheat crust that actually tastes good.
Is it low fat or low points? I suppose so. Will it make you fat if you eat too much? I would assume so. Therefore, go easy on the cheese, heavy on the veggie, light on the crust and don’t forget to share.
Healthy Homemade PizzasYou will be making two pizzas in this recipe.
INGREDIENTS - all organic
Dough (crust recipe follows):
2 small whole wheat pizza doughs (when spread thin, the pizza is approximately 10" x 6")
2T-3T rice flour
1 red pepper, cut into long slices
1 small red onion, diced
2 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese
20-30 leaves of fresh basil
8 oz of fresh mushrooms, sliced
NOTE: add the toppings that YOU like. The quantity of toppings listed above are enough for two pizzas.
2 cups red tomato sauce
2T pizza seasoning
2 - 3 cloves of fresh garlic, minced in a garlic press
1T olive oil
- Heat olive oil in a small sauce pan
- Add garlic, saute for about 1 minute; do not let garlic burn!
- Add the tomato sauce
- Add the pizza seasoning
- Mix together and simmer for about 2 minutes. Sauce does not need to cook long, nor does it need to heat up
- On a wooden or hard surface, spread the rice flour and roll out the pizza dough. (You are making two medium-sized pizzas, so roll out two balls. The recipe below makes TWO crusts!) The crust should be about 1/8 inch thick. Very thin! Place the uncooked crust onto a preheated pizza stone or cookie sheet. If you use a cookie sheet, try to use one without edges or the crust will tend to be gooey and undone in the center.
- Spread the sauce, 1 cup per pizza.
- Lay down the basil leaves. No need to chop them.
- Top with cheese and vegetables.
- Preheat oven to 425°F
- Place assembled pizzas in the oven and cook 15-18 minutes, keeping a close eye on them. When the cheese is bubbly and beginning to turn brown, take the pizza out of the oven. If you take the pizza out too soon, it will not be done in the middle. This is especially true if you are using a ceramic stone.
- Top with more fresh basil (or arugula!) if you like.
Let the pizza cool slightly, then slice and serve! Enjoy!
Two medium pizzas, enough to satisfy two adults, with leftovers for a 4-yr old boy.
Pizza Dough(adapted from Eating Well)
INGREDIENTS - all organic
- 3/4 cup whole-wheat flour
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 package quick-rising yeast, (2 1/4 teaspoons)
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon sugar
- 1/2-2/3 cup hot water, (120-130°F)
- Combine whole-wheat flour, all-purpose flour, yeast, salt and sugar in a bowl. Mix by hand. Combine hot water and oil in a measuring cup. Gradually pour in enough of the hot liquid until the mixture forms a sticky ball. The dough should be quite soft. If it seems dry, add 1 to 2 tablespoons warm water; if too sticky, add 1 to 2 tablespoons flour.
- Mix by hand until the dough forms a ball, then knead for 1 minute.
- Divide into two balls. Transfer the dough to two bowls. Cover with a kitchen towel. Let the dough rest for 10 to 20 minutes before rolling.
A few important details...
Over the years I’ve tried various cheeses for our pizzas. As most of you know, I try to use mainly organic foods in all of my cooking. There are exceptions however. Because the choice to eat mainly organic is expensive, I try to buy ONLY when food are on sale. The sales often determine what is for dinner that week. THAT is how I shop, that is how I afford organic foods. I can probably count on one hand the times that I’ve paid full-price for something organic. Always, always I shop the sales. (Organic milk and cream are one such exception; I pay full price for organic milk.)
Now, cheese is not always on sale. It’s on sale only a few times a year and, unless I want to freeze it which is not always an option, I sometimes have to pay full retail price for it. Here’s where I’ve found a great organic substitute, one that is my go-to for pizza cheese.
Andrew & Everett shredded mozzarella is a wonderful choice. The cheese is flavorful and mellow. It melts in your mouth and is not elastic and rubbery like some mozz cheeses. If you use this cheese for a while and then go back to name brand cheeses, you WILL notice the difference. Their site is outdated, so it might be difficult to find out where this cheese is carried in your area.
The other great things about this cheese?
- Its rBGH-free. They partner with independent, self-sustaining U.S. farmers committed to bringing cheese free of growth hormones and antibiotics. The dairy farmers are self-sustaining and it’s a core value to be hormone-free.
- All dairy cows are free range, non-shackled and grass-fed. The cows are even given names, not numbers.
- All of the milk used in making A&E cheese comes from farms that produce milk solely for the production of cheese.
- All of their milk is turned into cheese within hours of leaving the farm.
- The cheese is made from only the freshest milk available, eliminating the need for fillers and binders. Many other cheese makers use older, denigrated milk that is too old to be sold in a liquid form in a bottle. This older denigrated milk causes a softness in the cheese requiring additives, binders (such as Casein, a food industrial glue), and fillers (such as Milk Protein Concentrate) to be added to firm up the cheese and help keep its shape.
Let me know if you have tried any of the recipes I’ve been sharing lately. I would LOVE to hear from you!