Recipes | Weight Management
June 19, 2019

Recipe: How to make a healthier grilled pizza

by Grilled pizza topped with fresh vegetables and herbs.

When the weather heats up and the AC is running, who wants to turn on the oven when you can have grilled pizza?

 

Keep the kitchen cool and pizza lovers happy by using your outdoor grill instead of making pizza in the oven. Grilled pizza comes out crispy and delicious in no time — plus, homemade pizza is much healthier than frozen or takeout.

The recipe below is for a vegetarian pizza because that is what I like when my garden starts producing its bounty. But you can put any toppings on the pie that you like.

Ingredients

1 ball of dough (most grocery stores sell them now; ask at the bakery counter)
Approximately ½ cup of canned pizza sauce
1-½ cups shredded low-fat mozzarella cheese (or get creative with other cheeses, too)
One cup of cherry tomatoes, cut in half
One cup of arugula
One cup of thinly sliced green peppers
Fresh basil, washed and ribbon cut (fresh oregano is delicious too)
1 tablespoon olive oil (or your favorite healthy cooking oil)

Instructions

Dust a ball of dough with flour, place in a glass bowl and cover with a clean cloth for 1 hour before you are ready to make the pizza. This will allow the dough time to rise and warm up so it is easier to handle.

When you are ready to start assembling the pizza, heat the gas grill for about 10 minutes on medium heat.

Spray a pizza pan with cooking spray, then dust the pan with cornmeal. This prevents the pizza from sticking. (See note below regarding the pan.)

Closeup of a pizza pan sprinkled with cornmeal preparing for grilled pizza..

 

Roll out, or stretch by hand, the fully risen dough on the pizza pan, sprinkling a bit of flour on top if the dough is too sticky to work with. Stretch the dough very thin, so the pizza crust won’t have a doughy texture.

Raw pizza dough rolled out thin on a round pizza pan.

 

Spread sauce on top of the dough, taking care not to use too much sauce or your pizza will be mushy. Brush the edges lightly with olive oil.

Tomato sauce spread over raw pizza dough.

 

Sprinkle shredded cheese over the pizza.

Place vegetables and the basil on top.

Put the pizza pan on your gas grill rack and bake for approximately 15 minutes. Rotate once. It’s ready when the underside of the crust is golden brown.

An unbaked homemade vegetable grilled pizza going on the gas grill to cook.

As hard as it may be to wait, let your grilled pizza creation cool for a few minutes before cutting it into squares or pie shapes. This will help keep the cheese intact on each portion.

Some additional tips:

  • I am picky about my pizza pan. I only use the Air-bake 15.75 inch non-stick coated pizza pan (with the holes in it). I have found that it makes the best pizza. I bought mine at the grocery store, but you can buy them online for less than $10. Consider buying several for impromptu pizza parties!
  • Buy ready-made dough at the grocery store for faster pizza. Or if you are feeling ambitious, make your own. Don’t go with the kind in the tube.
  • Add whatever vegetables you like to personalize your pizza. Spinach, peppers, tomatoes, mushrooms and onions work well. If you are a meat lover, choose Canadian bacon or some lean ham for a heart-smart meat option.
  • Try pesto instead of tomato sauce for another creative option on your pizza.

Pizza on the grill
Author: 
Recipe type: Pizza
Cuisine: Pizza, Italian, vegetarian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: One 15-ounce pie
 
Ingredients
  • 1 ball of dough (most grocery stores sell them now; ask at the bakery counter)
  • Approximately ½ cup of canned pizza sauce
  • 1 ½ cups shredded low-fat mozzarella cheese (or get creative with other cheeses, too)
  • 1 cup of cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1 cup of arugula
  • 1 cup of thinly sliced green peppers
  • Fresh basil, washed and ribbon cut (fresh oregano is delicious too)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
Instructions
  1. Dust the ball of dough with flour, place in a glass bowl and cover with a clean cloth for 1 hour before you are ready to make the pizza. This will allow the dough time to rise and warm up, so it is easier to handle.
  2. When you're ready to start assembling the pizza, heat the gas grill for about 10 minutes on medium heat.
  3. Spray a pizza pan with cooking spray, then dust the pan with cornmeal. This prevents the pizza from sticking. See note below regarding the pan.
  4. Roll out (or stretch by hand) the fully risen dough on the pizza pan, sprinkling a bit of flour on top if the dough is too sticky to work with. Stretch the dough very thin, so that the pizzas won’t have a doughy texture.
  5. Spread sauce on top of the dough, taking care not to use too much sauce or your pizza will be mushy. Brush the edges lightly with olive oil.
  6. Sprinkle shredded cheese over the pizza.
  7. Place vegetables of your choosing and the basil on top.
  8. Put the pizza pan on your gas grill rack and let bake for approximately 15 minutes. Rotate once. It's ready when the underside of the crust is golden brown.
  9. As hard as it may be to wait, let your creation cool for a few minutes before cutting it into squares or pie shapes. This will help keep the cheese intact on each portion.
Notes
I am picky about my pizza pan. I only use the Air-bake 15.75 inch nonstick coated pizza pan (with the holes in it). I have found that it makes the best pizza. I bought mine at the grocery store, but you can buy them online for less than $10. Consider buying several for impromptu pizza parties!
Buy ready-made dough at the grocery store for faster pizza, or if you are feeling ambitious, make your own. Don’t go with the kind in a tube.
Add whatever vegetables you like to personalize your pizza. Spinach, peppers, tomatoes, mushrooms and onions work well. If you are a meat lover, choose Canadian bacon or some lean ham for a heart-smart meat option.
Try pesto instead of tomato sauce for another creative option on your pizza.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: ⅛ of a 15 oz. pie Calories: 189 Fat: 5.25 grams Saturated fat: 1 gram Carbohydrates: 29.5 grams Sodium: 199 milligrams Protein: 4.2 grams

 

Stacey Kendrick, MS, is a health educator with more than 20 years of experience in wellness and population health. She is the mother of two adult daughters. She teaches healthy cooking classes, runs, gardens and enjoys backyard bonfires.

Dinner, Summer, Heart Health, Weight Management

One thought on “Recipe: How to make a healthier grilled pizza”

  1. Alisha Ross says:

    Pizza is my favorite thing to cook with the kids. It is one food that their “help” can actually be help. You can’t really screw up putting toppings on, and they love to customize their own little pizzas.

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