As a quick and easy meal option, I find that pizza night is often on the weekly menu. I might even say it's a little too often. However, the family disagrees — it's their favorite meal. So rather than give it up completely, here are six tips for a healthier pizza.
Make It At Home
You will have full control to customize your pie.
Increase the Fiber and Nutrients
Make your own dough using at least half whole-wheat dough and pile on the vegetables.
Lighten up the Layer of Cheese
Use cheese to add flavor — but not too much.
Increase the Veggies
Here's your chance to get really creative. Mix and match to find your favorite combinations. Keep in mind that you might have to precook vegetables to ensure they cook properly with your pizza, so that they are neither raw (butternut squash, potato) nor overly soggy (zucchini).
Serve a Side Salad
This will help fill your plate and avoid overindulging.
Choose the Right Beverage
Limit the extra calories from drinks with added sugar or alcohol.
- 1¼ cup warm water
- 2¼ teaspoons yeast
- 1½ cups white whole-wheat flour
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon canola oil, divided
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 cup cooked sweet potato, mashed
- Fill a small bowl with the warm water. Sprinkle the yeast on top. Mix together lightly. Allow the yeast to rest (calling proofing) for 5 minutes.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flours and salt. Add proofed yeast. Use a wooden spoon to mix lightly (it will look crumbly and should not be fully combined).
- Add 2 tablespoons oil and honey, mixing again with the wooden spoon (it will still be a little crumbly).
- Add mashed sweet potato. Use your hands to knead the dough together until sweet potato is well combined and it forms into a ball.
- Lift the dough out of the bowl, coat the bottom and sides of the bowl with remaining 1 teaspoon oil. Return the dough to the bowl, roll it around in the oil to coat. Cover with a flour sack or towel, and let rise in a warm place (such as atop a preheated and then turned-off stove) for 60 minutes or until dough has increased in size. Makes 2⅓ pounds pizza dough.
- If using soon, transfer dough to a sealed plastic bag and store in the refrigerator for up to 6 days.
- To store in the freezer, divide dough into desired portions. Form each portion into a ball and place in separate freezer bags. Label and freeze for up to 3 months.