This recipe is not only super easy to make but can use up leftover bits and bobs in your fridge and pantry.
Some of my most fond memories as a kid were times when I was in the kitchen with my mum. As a toddler I loved watching her cook while I sat in one of the cabinets under the counter. I used to take all the pots and pans out and sit in there with the door open with my stuffed animals and lots of books. I used to think of it as my own clubhouse. From here I remember watching my mum dance around the kitchen making meals for the family.
As I got older I was allowed to help. I remember my first baking kit. It came with an apron, red plastic roller, cookie cutters (of which I still have one), and a wax mat for rolling out my cookie creations. I remember the first children’s cookbook my mum bought my brother and I. It came with measuring spoons and cups in bright primary colors and had some fab recipes. It taught me how to make French toast. (I highly recommend it – Kids Cooking: A Very Slightly Messy Manual By Jim M’Guinness.)
But one of the most fun things she would let us help bake in the kitchen was Chef Boyardee Pizza kits. It was a special treat when my mum would let us help make our own pizzas and choose the toppings. These easy and fun kits are my inspiration for today’s recipe. Not only does it help use up leftovers around the kitchen like pasta sauce but it is a great meal to make with kids or make a toppings bar and allow your party guests to create their own individual pizzas.
Pizza dough/base – I use my bread maker for easy homemade dough. But you can also easily buy these at the supermarket. They even sell gluten-free pizza bases now.
Pizza or pasta sauce – I usually make this when I have leftover marinara sauce. Pesto is also great on pizzas.
Toppings – This is a great opportunity to use what you have already in your kitchen. Such as, yellow onion, red peppers, bacon, tomatoes, asparagus, baby spinach, mushrooms, deli ham, pepperoni, etc.
Cheese – Such as, mozzarella, shredded cheddar, Mexican blend, parmigiana, goats cheese, etc.
Extra virgin olive
1. Prepare your pizza dough. For me this meant following the recipe on my bread maker, which I had to do well ahead of time before baking the pizza as it takes 40 minutes to make the dough in the machine and added time to roll and rise. If you bought a pre-prepared base just remove the packaging.
2. Add your sauce and spread to within a 1/2 inch from the ends of the base. I like my pizzas saucy. I also like to warm up a bit of sauce to keep on the side for dipping.
3. Add your cheese. I like my pizzas cheesy so used up lots of leftover mozzarella and cheddar I had in the fridge.
4. Add your toppings. In the pictured pizza I used a left over onion, Romano pepper, bacon and tomato. Other topping suggestions:
- Goat cheese, red onion chutney
- Mini potatoes, smokey bacon crumbs, sour cream, onion jam
- Asparagus, zucchini, red pepper
- Taco seasoned chicken or beef, salsa, Mexican blend cheese
5. Drizzle the pizza with the olive oil. Bake as per the instructions for the pizza base.
6. Serve hot and enjoy.