5 Steps To A Healthier Pizza

Hi Friends!

It’s time for another Recipe Redux post! Here’s the prompt they gave us for this month:

Pizza Party! Give the delivery guy a day off; whether it is for Friday Fun Night with the kids, a pizza chef competition among friends, or for Super Bowl Sunday (February 2). Share your healthy pizza recipe that we can all look forward to after a long week…or a long day.

I’m a huge fan of pizza…and I’m a firm believer that there’s nothing wrong with faceplanting into a good old fashioned greasy pepperoni pizza every once and a while.

Healthy- no? Tasty- you betcha!

healthy pizza 1 5 Steps To A Healthier Pizza

HOWEVER, I’m also a firm believer that pizza CAN be part of a healthy diet. So I thought I’d take a minute to give you my top 5 tips for a healthier {homemade} pizza…because we all know I love homemade everything because YOU control the ingredients. So- here we go:

1) Make your own crust. I’m not sure people realize just how easy it is to make your own pizza crust. Traditional pizza dough involves a minimal number of ingredients and it’s perfect for making ahead of time. With a little planning, you can spend 5 minutes putting together the dough one night and enjoy homemade pizza in a jiffy the following night!

  • If you’re going for traditional crust, spice it up by adding herbs or hot red pepper flakes and opt to roll the dough thin instead of leaving it super thick.
  • If you want to be non-traditional, try a socca crust (made with chickpea flour), cauliflower crust or even a homemade whole wheat tortilla!

2) Make your own sauce. Instead of buying pre-made sauce that tends to be loaded with sodium, opt for no-salt added plain tomatoes. I love Pomi Strained Tomatoes because they have just one ingredient- tomatoes.

From there, you jazz up the sauce with your own seasonings!

  • Add oregano, basil, garlic and just a pinch of salt and let simmer.
  • Plan ahead and make a batch of Crockpot Roasted Veggie Sauce. Freeze in batches and defrost when needed.
  • Take it a step further and puree some white beans into your sauce. It will add protein and fiber and no one will even notice!

3) Load up on healthy toppings. Think beyond just traditional pepperoni or sausage. There are all sorts of healthy toppings you can add to your pizza:

  • Grilled Chicken
  • Peppers
  • Onions
  • Eggs
  • Mushrooms
  • Spinach
  • Broccoli
  • Pineapple
  • Avocado
  • Pumpkin
  • Eggplant
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Kale
  • Asparagus
  • Tempeh
  • Artichokes

Rule of thumb- add your veggies, then add an extra handful or two icon smile 5 Steps To A Healthier Pizza

4. Go light on the cheese. To me, cheese is what makes pizza pizza. I know that’s not true for everyone…but in my world, almost every pizza needs some cheese. However, that doesn’t mean it needs a whole bag of cheese. Go for a flavorful cheese where a little goes a long way and learn to rely on the flavors you’ve incorporated into your homemade crust and sauce, plus the flavors of the toppings.

  • Try fresh mozzarella, goat cheese or parmesan!

5. Add veggies as a side. I always make an effort not to just eat pizza by itself.

  • Try serving it with a side of raw or roasted veggies, a slaw or a big salad!

—————–

So, now that I’ve given you my favorite tips to healthify a pizza, here’s one of my favorite combos:

Grilled Chicken, Avocado & Fresh Mozzarella Pizza

DSC 0188 5 Steps To A Healthier Pizza

Crust (makes 2 pizzas): 

1 1/2 cups warm water
2 teaspoons active dry yeast
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
2 3/4 cups white whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1-2 teaspoons crushed hot red pepper flakes

1. Combine the water and yeast in a large bowl and let sit for 2 minutes.
2. Add the remaining ingredients and stir until combined. Add a bit more water if necessary. If you can’t get it all to combine with a spoon, dump it on the counter and knead 5-6 times. That’s it. 
3. Let rise for 2 hours on the counter (or overnight in the fridge).
4. When ready to eat, divide dough in half and use a rolling pin to roll into a thin crust. 
5. Add sauce and toppings and bake at 425 for 7-10 minutes.

DSC 0181 5 Steps To A Healthier Pizza

Sauce:

13 oz Pomi strained tomatoes (or other no-salt added tomato sauce)
2-3cloves garlic
2 tsp oregano
1 tsp basil
1/2 – 1 cup white beans
pinch of salt

1. Combine ingredients in a blender or food processor and puree until smooth.
2. Pour into a small pot and let simmer for 15 minutes. 
(I don’t like a lot of sauce. If you’re a heavy saucer, you might need the whole 26 oz box)

DSC 0187 5 Steps To A Healthier Pizza

Toppings:
Diced chicken
Red peppers
Onion
Fresh Mozzarella
Avocado

1. Put the chicken, peppers and onions on the pizza.
2. Top with slices of fresh mozz.
3. Bake until cheese is melty and crust is golden brown. 
4. Top with avocado after removing from the oven. 

Enjoy!
–Lindsay–

For more delicious pizza recipes, check out the links below!

About Lindsay

Lindsay Livingston is a Registered Dietitian from Columbus, Ohio. On her blog, she shares simple, healthy recipes, nutrition tips, workouts and snapshots of her life. Follow her on Twitter @LeanGrnBeanBlog and Instagram @TheLeanGreenBean and be sure to subscribe via RSS or email so you never miss a post!


Comments

  1. Making your own crust is definitely the way to a healthier pizza. I myself have always been too lazy to make my own – I will be saving your recipe though to try out because I love a thin crust on my pizza.
    Nina @ Whats for eats recently posted..Tandoori Chicken Pizza (The Recipe ReDux)

  2. I experimented with making my own gf pizza crusts which were an epic fail. So, it will be store bought gf pizza crusts for now while I experiment a little more. Love avocado as a pizza topping!
    Jill @ Fitness, Health and Happiness recently posted..{Recipe ReDux} Lightened Up Southwest Pizza

  3. i like buying trader joe’s whole wheat crust and then making my own pizza from.. always load up the veggies and use minimal cheese! :)
    Linz @ Itz Linz recently posted..25 Weeks Pregnant – A Dream

  4. I wonder if ID DARE TRY THIS with my daughter’s sleep overs? ;-)
    Carla recently posted..Four ways slacklining parallels my life.

  5. I like making my own pizza. I use my bread machine for the dough. Great tips on making it healthier!

  6. Love these ideas! We make homemade pizza about once a week (with Trader Joe’s dough) and I love piling the veggies on!
    Kelly @ Kelly Runs for Food recently posted..Make-ahead salads and the anti-snow dance

  7. I actually don’t make pizza at home too often, and I’ve never tried to make my own crust. I should definitely change that! And I love the sound of chicken, avocado and mozzarella as toppings.
    Sam @ Better With Sprinkles recently posted..Wine and Food Show 2014.

  8. Looks delicious and such a great idea! We love making pizza at our house!
    Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted..Coffee Talk

  9. Pizza for all! I am a super lazy cook – I might have to have someone else make for me! ;)
    Jody – Fit at 56 recently posted..Earbuds, Earclips, Music Listening Comfort while You Work Out

  10. Love your quote about doing a faceplant into a pepperoni pizza – I do that a few times of year and the rest of the year enjoy pizza according to your super tips. LOVE your Chicken/Avocado/Fresh Mozz combo…
    Deanna Segrave-Daly recently posted..Butternut Squash & Sausage Pizza – The Recipe ReDux

  11. Great tips. I especially like the one about rolling the crust thin. I always order thin-crust pizza when I’m out, but for some reason I never think to roll it thin when I’m making my own. I’m going to try that next time! Thanks. :)
    Maryea {happy healthy mama} recently posted..quick & easy chicken pumpkin chili

  12. This looks amazing! I love your tips, especially the idea to add some pureed white beans to the sauce. Such a great idea!! I will have to try that soon on some real crust- I ended up going the pita pizza route, but now I am craving a real pie after looking at everyone’s fabulous ideas :)
    Marisa @ Uproot from Oregon recently posted..Spanish Romesco Pita Pizza

  13. I love all of your topping ideas! Since adopting a mostly plant-based diet, I have found that pizza really doesn’t even need cheese as long as it includes a tasty sauce and plenty of veggies/fruits. Vegan pizza is still darn delicious!
    Hannah @ CleanEatingVeggieGirl recently posted..Chocolate Cran-Blueberry Buckwheat Bake

  14. I love this post! Pizza is also a good way to clear out little bits of veggies from the back of the fridge. Last night I made onion, red pepper, sweet corn, and turkey pepperoni pizza. I found a recipe on Pinterest (I can’t take credit for it) for 10 minute pizza dough, which I used. It doesn’t have the same flavor as traditional dough but it is fast and easy! I made mine with 1/2 whole wheat flour and it worked well. Here is the link: http://www.sugardishme.com/2013/10/24/10-minute-pizza-dough/
    I love your blog and read all your posts!

  15. We were going to do tacos for the Super Bowl but I think now we are going to do pizza! I think making some different crusts and having different toppings would be such fun for a party! All of those pizzas look amazing and I loved your tips on how to make a healthier pizza!
    Elizabeth @ Positive Change recently posted..Running, Family and Work!

  16. Great post. Honestly pizza really isn’t that unhealthy for you when you make your own. I love pizza both homecooked and take out so I’ll never complain either way.
    HollieisFueledByLOLZ recently posted..Sometimes You Just Want to Win

  17. I’ve never made my own crust before but you can make your pizza so much healthier if you know everything going into it!!
    Fancy Nancy recently posted..Let’s Talk Training Week 2

  18. Mmm this looks fantastic!! I love it when pizza is healthified. I also love that you made such a thin, crispy crust!
    Alison @ Daily Moves and Grooves recently posted..Resting: I Don’t Think I’m Doing It Right

  19. Love these tips! We eat pizza at least once a week, so I make sure to error on the healthy side. And it’s still delish! Great post :)
    Brittany (Healthy Slice of Life) recently posted..5 Factors (for me) in Picking the Right Husband

  20. Homemade pizza is my favorite thing to make. I love to load mine up with veggies and use applesauce in the crust instead of oil.
    Kristen recently posted..spring semester goals

  21. I love homemade pizza! I’d say we make it about once a month at our house. I never realized how easy it is to do homemade sauce – I’m going to have to try that out.
    Dana @ Conscious Kitchen Blog recently posted..Beer, Cheese & Workouts

  22. Since I absolutely love pizza and could eat it all the time, I’ll definitely be taking these tips into consideration. I like to make my own pizza crust – I use a combination of white and whole wheat flour. My favorite side to eat pizza is a big salad. Pizza and salad is the best combo ever!
    Holly @ EatGreatBEGreat recently posted..Winter Vegetable Quinoa

  23. I love the idea of homemade pizza. It’s healthier too! It looks simple enough to make. Looks delicious too. =)
    Helen recently posted..In a Running Rut

  24. We love to make our own pizzas. It’s a great way to get the family involved. I love your addition of spices in the crust and beans in the sauce. I am going to do that next time.
    Christie – Food Done Light recently posted..Egg, Spinach and Canadian Bacon Breakfast Pizza #reciperedux

  25. I love all of your tips! I am a huge homemade pizza fan, and just in the last six months or so I have started making my own crust! It is so much better and healthier! I can’t wait to try your recipe!
    Becky@TheSavedRunner recently posted..At Home HIIT Workout and Meal Planning

  26. I love your recipe redux posts!! Pizza is so delicious and easy to lighten up. Great tips. :)
    Carly @ Fine Fit Day recently posted..These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things

  27. Mmmm I’m ALL about homemade pizza! I think we have it just about every week for our Friday dinner. I love all the tips you shared. I always make our own pizza dough, and I had no idea how EASY it was for the longest time. Making my own sauce is another no brainer that’s super easy, healthier than store bought, and cheaper!
    Ashley @ My Food N Fitness Diaries recently posted..Enough of the Fat Talk

  28. Pizza might be my favorite food in the entire world! While I love the unhealthy deep-dish pizzas, a girl cannot live on that. Lately I have been enjoying the tortilla crust pizzas. So good!
    Jillienne @ ChasingRaspberries recently posted..LA Marathon Training Schedule & Nadia Ruiz 100+ Time Marathoner

  29. This is awesome – love all of the tips – we decided (as a family) that this year we are going to try making our own pizza instead of calling for delivery!!!
    Kim recently posted..Do Clothes “Make” Us?

  30. Great tips! Love the beans added in the sauce for extra nutrition :)
    Bridget @ The Road Not Processed recently posted..Cinnamon Sweet Potato + Banana Pizza

  31. Your crust recipe looks fantastic – definitely pinning to try next time! And I just love that you put beans in your sauce, never thought of that!
    Cheryl Meyer recently posted..Recipe ReDux Pizza Party

  32. Love your tips for healthier pizzas! I too always try to eat a vegetable with pizza, either salad on the side or piled salad on top of my slice- it’s my new favorite way to eat pizza :)
    Alexandra Caspero recently posted..Raising a Healthy Baby: Ready for Solids?

  33. Yummy! I will definitely be trying out this recipe soon! Love pizza, but love healthy pizza even more!
    Celina Allemand recently posted..Lunch at Nash’s

  34. your pizza photographs make me crave pizza! Yumm, great choice for this months pizza theme :)
    Sarah Grace recently posted..Banana Bread Pizza Crust ~ 2 ways [Paleo and GF option]

  35. Great tips. I always try to have salad with a pizza too, especially if dining out it’s good to share a pizza and a large salad rather than having a whole pizza to yourself.
    Glenda @ Healthy Stories recently posted..Mexican Bean Salad

  36. Love that you not only created a delicious recipe, but you also provided all these great tips so people can customize their own!
    Whitney @ To Live & Diet in L.A. recently posted..Mini Hawaiian Portobello Pizza Bites

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