Friday, August 1, 2008

Pizza! Pizza!

Pizza is a Friday night favorite in our family. Not only does it satisfy our appetites, it also satisfies our budget and health requirements! There's nothing better than homemade pizza...especially when the kids get to help.

They love to measure ingredients, mix, knead the dough, and top the pizza. Oh, and they love eating what they create!

We start by making our own dough, a whole wheat/oat/white flour blend that really handles nicely and fills us up better than all white flour. It takes less than an hour to rise, so I can start it around 4:30 and still have dinner on the table by 6:00. This also freezes well in an oiled zip-top bag, so we make a double batch and freeze half. Less work next time!

Ingredients for a single batch:
  • 1 TBSP active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup dry quick oats
  • 2-3 cups white flour (start with 2, adding more as needed)
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 TBSP sugar (I use a lot, since yeast feeds on sugar and will need more if frozen or kept in the fridge for a few days)
  • 1 cup very warm water (hot water kills yeast)
  • 1 TBSP olive oil

  • 1/3 cup red sauce (or pesto) We just use regular pasta sauce from a jar...fancy, huh?
  • 2 cups shredded cheese - Italian blends are good, mozzarrella, smoked provolone
  • Your favorite toppings - we love colossal-size black olives, red onion, peppers, tomatoes, garlic...really just whatever we have on hand. We throw on leftover grilled, chopped chicken breast or sausage when we have it.
  1. Mix dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Stir in water and olive oil (a stand mixer works, too, if it can handle a stiff dough...switch to bread hooks once you've got your ingredients mixed)
  3. If kneading by hand, turn dough out onto floured surface. As you knead, slowly add more white flour until dough is no longer sticky (it should feel smooth and elastic). Kids love to help knead the dough. You can separate it into smaller lumps for them to work with and combine at the end for a final thorough kneading.
  4. Place in an oiled bowl, turning to coat, and cover with plastic wrap. Set in a warm, dry place to rise until doubled in bulk. (If the sunny spot on my back porch isn't warm enough, I pre-warm my oven and then turn it off to let the dough rise.)
  5. Once dough is doubled, show it off to the's fascinating! Punch it down and press into an oiled pan (we use a round pizza pan, but a cookie sheet works fine, too).
  6. Add sauce, cheese and toppings...this part is fun for the kids, as long as you supervise. Our cheese always seems to pile up in one spot!

  7. Bake in preheated 450°F oven for 12-15 minutes.

  8. Enjoy!
For more frugal ideas, visit Biblical Womanhood's Frugal many links, so little time!

See some of our favorite pizza-making books below. The Little Red Hen Makes a Pizza is very cute, and Pete's a Pizza, by William Steig, is a fun read that our kids just LOVE to act out.


  1. It is 8:00 o'clock in the morning here and I want to eat your pizza so bad! Thanks for sharing the tips and pics, it's very inspiring!

  2. This pizza looks delicious! Yum...we use the same pizza dough recipe, and it is very easy. I love that dinner prep becomes a family affair!

  3. The pizza version of the Little Red Hen is one of my favorites. If you also read the original version , you can use the two books in a compare and contrast reading lesson and enjoy a great pizza !!!

  4. Great idea! I LOVE books, and my kids both love to read as well...yea! I also like to read in front of my kids (my own book, to myself) so they know that reading is not just for knowledge or study, but also for enjoyment. During these times, they usually go pull a book off the shelf and sit down to read, too.

    This doesn't always work, but when it does, it's lovely!

  5. I saw your article on Kirtsy! Awesome!

  6. Our Friday night pizza dough is rising as I type! Thanks for the great recipe!

  7. Yea! I hope you find it as satisfying as I do to see my family greedily gobbling up something I've made from scratch!


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