Pizza Night At Home, Who Needs Delivery!

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Pizza art

Nothing beats the smell of freshly made pizza cooking in the oven and it’s easier to make than you think. You might have a favorite handed down pizza dough recipe from your family, I know I do but honestly I hardly ever use it these days.

Good quality ready made pizza dough can be easy to find nowadays. You can find it in Italian markets, grocery stores and even your local pizzeria will sell you some.

I usually buy a few balls of dough and stick them in my freezer so I have them readily available when we feel like pizza night at home, you can do the same with your homemade dough if you make it ahead and freeze it. I’ll usually take the dough out of the freezer in the morning, as it sits it will defrost but then more importantly it comes to room temperature which makes it very pliable and easy to roll out.

The above photo was a pizza I recently made which was really fun to do and it tasted amazing, I call it pizza art. This pizza needs no sauce or cheese.

  1. I always start out coating my pans with olive oil on the bottom and sides, then I sprinkle the bottoms with a light dusting of cornmeal or polenta.
  2. I used a quarter sheet pan for this with a heated oven at 450F.
  3. Place 1 pound of dough into the pan and make dimple marks all over with the tips of your fingers.
  4. Drizzled olive oil all over making sure it falls into the dimple indentions.
  5. All the vegetables I used in the photo above were uncooked, I also added olives and very thin sliced potatoes.
  6. Drizzle the top of the veggies with olive oil, season with salt and pepper, maybe red pepper, oregano whatever you want.
  7. Bake til golden brown on bottom and sides, maybe 15 minutes or so but ovens do vary so keep an eye on it!

white pizza

One of my personal favorite types of pizza to make is this white pizza with garlic sautéed spinach, oh it’s so delicious!

The topping has no red sauce but rather a mix of ricotta, shredded mozzarella and parmesan cheese and you really don’t need a lot! I also take a nice handful of fresh spinach and wilt it down in a sauté pan with some garlic flavored olive oil, then cool it down and squeeze it til no moisture is clinging onto it.

  • This pizza was made using  1/2 pound of dough, rolled to fit a 15 inch round pizza pan.
  • Prep the pan with olive oil all over and a dusting of cornmeal or polenta on the bottom, preheat oven to 500F.
  • Mix together 1 cup each of ricotta and shredded mozzarella, add in a good handful of grated parmesan cheese.
  • Pre- cook dough for 5 minutes in hot oven, only 5! Then take it out, push it down if it bubbled up and spread the ricotta mixture all over the warm top, then arrange your spinach all around.
  • Bake for around 12 – 15 minutes till golden on bottom and sides. (ovens do vary).

pizza ingredients

When I use red sauce on a pizza I make a simple and light sauce which doesn’t overpower the ingredients but rather enhances them.

  • Open a 28 oz. can of crushed tomatoes, a good Italian brand.
  • Right into the can add 1 tablespoon of olive oil, 1 small smashed garlic, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon dried oregano, and an optional pinch of red pepper flakes.
  • Stir it up and that’s it, it’s ready to use!

sausage pizza

My husbands favorite combination on pizza is cheese, sausage, mushroom and onions. The pan and the pre-cooking of the dough was exactly the same as above pizza. By precooking the dough for the 5 minutes it gives the bottom a head start on a nice crispy crust.

sausage pizza

  • The sausage was removed from the casing then browned so there was no visible pink.
  • Spread your fresh sauce on top, then shredded mozzarella, onions, sliced mushrooms, dotting the cooked sausage all around.
  • A quick drizzle all over with olive oil, you can add fresh basil or dried oregano whatever you have.
  • Into the 500 degree oven for around 15 minutes or so.

 

Italian beef pizza

If you’re from Chicago then you’re very familiar with a very popular sandwich here called the Italian beef. It’s thinly sliced beef in a highly seasoned Au Jus, it’s usually served with sweet peppers on top, and hot giardiniera  on the side. It’s excellent and you can also put all the components on a pizza!

  1. Same as above, precook dough on nicely oiled pan for 5 minutes, spread red sauce, then cheese, thin slices of beef and slightly sautéed peppers.
  2. In 15 minutes or so remove and drizzle on the giardiniera on your individual piece.

 

nutella pizza

And let’s not forget dessert! You can make a Nutella pizza and it is sinfully delicious! You may think cooked pizza dough with Nutella on it? Don’t think twice just do it!

I did a step by step post on it here, so check out how it’s done. Feel free to top it with berries of your choice or sliced bananas topped with nuts, you can’t go wrong with any of it!

Enjoy having pizza night at home, it’s inexpensive, it uses few ingredients, it’s so easy to do and the kids can even get involved.

Like I said, you may never order delivery again!

Follow me on Instagram to see what else I’m cooking up during the week.

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Comments

  1. How artistic!! We make our own pizza dough just because it’s so easy to make and freeze. We have a pizza night once a week and we usually just go with arugula or spinach on it. Your springtime pizza is next on our pizza night. I hope you and your family are doing well. Such strange times for everyone. Our Easter was lonesome but everyone is healthy so far. Take care. Un abbraccio forte (virtually of course).

  2. Funnily enough I made pizza at home just last night! But it wasn’t nearly as pretty as this one. A real work of art, Marie!

  3. Hi, very interesting post. I have a question (or two): how do you roll out the pizza dough on a pan that is oiled and dusted with cornmeal? Doesn’t the cornmeal come off and get mixed with the dough? If you made the dough yourself, at what point do you freeze it: after kneading, or after the first or second raise?

    • The dough has to at room temp then I just use my fingers and push it out right on the pan, if it springs back I let it rest and do it again until it fits the size I want. The cornmeal makes a nice crunchy bottom, it’s very lightly dusted and gives the crust nice texture. As far as freezing homemade dough yes let it fully rise, divide it into your pizza portions, defrost in fridge and then bring it to room temp before using. Hope this helps!

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