Pizza is one of those rare foods that all 3 of my boys will eat every time we have it. But I don’t have the time to always make homemade pizza and the ones we get from the pizza place are probably filled with just as much processed food as the frozen ones in the store. The alternative seems to be homemade frozen pizza. Make them when I do have the time so I can quickly heat them up later when I don’t.
This one ended up working out pretty well on the first try, and we are actually almost ready for the third batch. All three boys like these. Although I did make the mistake of cutting one into square pieces instead of the traditional triangle ones, which nearly sent the 4 year old into a meltdown. “We’ll NEVER have triangle pizza again…”. Once he got past the shape, he did seem to enjoy the pizza though.
I started with a homemade crust made in the bread maker – and added in some extra whole grain and flax for some sneaky nutrition.
This made two thin crust pizzas.
1 3/4 cups water
2 TB olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 TB honey
4 cups whole grain white flour
1/4 cup ground flax seed
2 tsp. yeast
Add the ingredients to your bread maker in the order listed – wet ingredients first, yeast in a little well on top and set for dough, or in my bread maker’s case, the appropriately labeled pizza dough setting. You’re going to want to check after it’s been stirring/kneading/doing it’s thing for a few minutes to make sure the dough isn’t too dry since different flours, humidity level, etc can all change the consistency of your dough. If it looks a little dry, add some extra water, a little sticky, add a little more flour.
Once the dough was done, I rolled it out into two mostly round crusts (or more accurately, I and my 4 year old and 6 year old rolled them out)and prebaked them for 6 minutes at 400 degrees. This is important to keep the crust from getting soggy. Make sure to use a fork to poke little holes all over the dough before baking (my boys loved doing this part) or the crust will puff up like a balloon. This actually happened the first crust I made and it was easily remedied by popping it after cooking, but the little holes beforehand are the better route. Let these cool completely, then add your sauce, cheese and toppings. Now for the trickiest part of the whole homemade frozen pizza experience… you need to find a nice flat empty space in your freezer. Before you wrap the pizzas, you need to freeze them on a cookie sheet or pizza pan for about an hour so everything sticks together and the crust has a chance to get nice and sturdy. The first time I did this, my flat space on top of frozen veggies and cheese sauces wasn’t quite as level as I thought and I ended up with some pizza sauce making it’s way into my ice cube tray.
Once they’re frozen, you can wrap them in plastic wrap and then I also wrap them in foil. Most likely, since we are using these within a week or two, I could skip the aluminum foil, but in case they’re there longer, it will help keep them from getting freezer burned. My next batch I may try individual pizzas that I can fit into a freezer bag to use a little less packaging.
To reheat, I baked the frozen pizza on my pizza stone in a 400 degree oven for 15-17 minutes. They turned out very good. The crust was nice and crispy and they didn’t taste all processed and overly salty. In fact, all of the boys are liking this a little more each time we have it as they get used to the whole grain crust and less processed taste.
My sauce (you could use whatever pizza sauce you like as well)
3/4 cup pureed carrots, zuchini and spinach – sauteed in 1 tsp olive oil
Add a 28 oz can crushed tomatoes (I know there’s BPA in the can lining, but baby steps here folks), 1 TB crushed basil, 1 1/2 tsp crushed oregano, 1 tsp garlic powder, 1 tsp salt and 1 TB sugar. Simmer for a bit and then let cool completely before putting onto the pizza. This recipe made enough sauce for 3 pizzas. Since I make batches of two pizzas at a time, I use the excess sauce for pasta by adding a small can of tomato sauce, some sauteed mushrooms, onions and red peppers cut into super super small pieces and a pound of ground turkey.