One last shout out to tomatoes and then we’ll move on to other veggies I’m loving at the Farmer’s Market!  We’ve had a bit of a heat wave over the last few weeks, so tomatoes are making a less common reappearance following a cool August. Sounds like a perfect excuse to make a little homemade pizza sauce! And, of course, we’ll serve it up on my favorite homemade dough with a side of some crisp, roasted veggies!

I love to make homemade pizza.  It eliminates all the wonders of what we’re getting from those pizzas in a box. This sauce is super simple, so it leaves lots of room for you to add whatever your family may enjoy (crushed red pepper for a little spice, onion if you like, or additional Italian seasoning). I love the convenience of throwing it in my blender, but if that’s not possible, just let it cook down and use a hand held potato masher.  Either way will work. The blender gives you a smoother sauce, while the hand held gives you more chunks and texture.  This sauce cooks down, so if you like a lot of sauce I would recommend doubling it.

Pizza Sauce

  • 4-5 large tomatoes
  • 5-10 basil leaves
  • 1 fresh garlic clove or a tsp of garlic powder
  • sea salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tbs of olive oil

If you’re using a blender, combine the tomatoes, garlic, and basil leaves, then pulse to your desired texture.  I would recommend blanching the tomatoes, allowing the skin to fall off rather than waste half the tomato in the peeling process.  Place the blended (or chopped if you’re going that route) ingredients into a small to medium saucepan.  Add salt, pepper, and olive oil.   I usually let this simmer at least an hour covered, stirring occasionally.  In a time crunch, I’ll just simmer for as long as it takes to prep the dough.

Speaking of dough….let’s get started on the base layer of our homemade pizza! There are so many options to choose from. I sometimes use a sourdough starter (which we can check out another day) and sometimes my from-scratch version which I’ll share today. I’ll sometimes go the no-flour route using gluten free wraps. Another gluten free option would be a cauliflower “crust” or zucchini strips.  Use your imagination! It will be hard to go wrong once paired with your delicious homemade sauce.

Pizza dough

  • 3 cups of flour  ( I have used both whole wheat and all purpose)
  • 1 tbs coconut sugar
  • 2 tbs oil ( I use coconut or olive oil)
  • 1 tsp of sea salt
  • 2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
  • 1/2 to 1 cup of warm water
  • coconut oil for greasing

Combine all dry ingredients in large bowl.  Add the oil and then start adding the water.  Continue adding water until your dough becomes workable on your pizza pans.  I get two pizzas out of this recipe, but I Iike a thin crust.  If you prefer thick, increase the ingredients to 1.5 or 2x.  Grease your pizza pans with a little coconut oil and roll out your dough onto pizza pans.  Add your sauce and toppings and bake at 375 for 25 minutes. Watch towards the end to not overcook or undercook depending on your oven and the thickness of your crust.

Toppings! Here’s your big chance to have fun personalizing your pizza.  My kids like plain pizza….boring! So that’s what you see in the photo. I start with cheese – which I get locally! Havarti, mozzarella, parmesan…..lots of options and you can mix and match. I usually grate my cheese over the pizza.  If you are in a pinch, do some nice big chunks!  Whatever works.

The kids love some pepperoni, so I typically add that when we have it on hand. And I love to add mushrooms which I always have around from one of my go-to local farms!  (We are lucky to live in an area with many options – IF you look for them. I will dive in to that topic another day!) If your family enjoys their pizza with peppers, onions, spinach, etc –  mix it up! Most importantly, keep it fresh, from beginning to end! Yum!!

 *Note: The dough on pizza pictured is from my sourdough starter, but you will not be disappointed with the recipe above!  If you do have sourdough use it instead.  If not, stay tuned and I will give you tips on how to get started on that soon!

pizza before oven

We’re not done yet! Remember, in my opinion, a meal isn’t a meal without a little green, and NO,  basil doesn’t count on this one:) Here’s my usual pairing for pizza.

Roasted Broccoli and/or Cauliflower

Clean and cut broccoli and cauliflower to desired size.  Spread over cookie sheet.  I spoon small amounts of coconut oil over pieces.  (I like coconut oil a lot, you may choose a little less.) Season with sea salt, pepper, and garlic powder and cook at 425 for about 15 minutes.

pizza plated with broccoli and cauliflower

There you have it – three healthy, simple recipes in one day!  A little bit of effort, but I’ll take it over the cardboard box pizza night anytime!