In part two of our three part series, we explore the most innovative ways to eat pizza! Whether your craving pizza for breakfast, as a portable snack, or even a shareable appetizer, we’ve got you covered!
Pizza is a staple on Friday movie nights, football game parties and everyday meals alike. It’s the perfect compromise when the gang can’t decide what to eat, and the perfect meal on busy days when you don’t feel like cooking. As delicious as a traditional pizza pie tastes, sometimes you want to try something new. Lucky for you, plenty of people have thought of creative ways to eat pizza, and we’re about to explore them. Think of it as your pizza bucket list. What are you waiting for?
The person who decided to put eggs, bacon, sausage and cheese on a pizza crust truly changed the world. It’s like an entire breakfast sitting on an edible plate. We can’t think of anything wrong with that picture. Breakfast pizzas typically forgo the traditional pizza sauce, instead baking the egg on top of the crust. The result is a flavor completely different than any pizza you’ve tried before, but it’s well worth it.
As delicious as it is, homemade pizza takes work. Sometimes you want all the rich flavors of pizza without all the dough rolling, sauce spreading and long baking times. Pizza toast is just the treat to fulfill your pizza cravings. You get a tasty pizza-like creation in about 5 minutes, making it the ideal late-night snack. Pizza toast is easy to modify based on the ingredients you have around the house.
You start with an already toasted piece of bread. A toaster, broiler, or toaster oven does the trick. Spread sauce on the toast, and add your toppings and cheese. Pop the whole thing under the broiler in the oven until the cheese melts, and pizza is served. We recommend making yourself at least two slices. Because pizza toast is so easy to make, you can have another slice ready in minutes if you want more.
Move over, chili cheese fries. There’s a new fry fad in town. This innovative pizza idea combines two amazing foods: pizza and fries. Pizza fries are another one of those pizza alternatives that are almost too easy — and too good — to be true, but they are a real thing.
You need a crispy fry base for this recipe. Baking up a batch of frozen fries to a crispy texture should do the trick. You can also grab some fresh, hot fries from your favorite restaurant on your way home. Next, drizzle them with sauce and top with cheese, pepperoni and any of your other favorite pizza toppings. You can even top it with pineapple if that’s your thing. A quick melt under the broiler, and you’re ready to dig into the best way to eat fries.
Is it a pizza? Is it a cake? It’s really anyone’s guess, but it will definitely feel like your birthday when you experience all of the melty, gooey layers of this pizza creation.
Think of the pizza cake as several small, thin pizzas stacked up into one glorious cake of pizza. This pizza creation requires a tall cake pan — at least 4 inches tall. Dough lines the sides and bottom of the pan. Then, the layering begins: crust, sauce, toppings. The layers continue to the top of the pan. This delight does take some time to bake because of the thickness, but it is well worth the wait.
When you create your plan of attack for eating this pizza option, make sure it involves a knife and fork. You’ll need it to power through the multiple layers of pizza goodness. It’s also a good idea to invite several friends. You definitely won’t be able to finish this cake on your own.
Stuffed Pizza Pretzel
Who doesn’t love a soft, warm pretzel? We’re sure you would agree the only way to make that pretzel better is to stuff it with pizza toppings. That’s just what some creative people do. Instead of simply creating ropes to twist into soft pretzels, those ropes get flattened, filled with toppings and sealed up, so the toppings stay in the pretzel tube. They then get shaped into the traditional pretzel style and baked.
If that sounds like too much work, start with a prebaked soft pretzel as a makeshift crust for a simple homemade pizza. Top it with pepperoni and cheese before tossing it under the broiler.
Pull-Apart Pizza Bread
Have you ever dug into a fresh, hot pan of monkey bread? The sweet cinnamon pull-apart bread is unbelievably good. We argue that its savory counterpart is even better. Imagine chunks of refrigerator biscuit dough layered with sauce, cheese and pepperoni, baked to a fluffy golden mass of deliciousness. The bread pulls right apart, thanks to the small chunks of biscuits that serve as the base.
Another version of the pizza pull-apart bread uses a round loaf of prebaked bread as the base. Cuts made lengthwise and widthwise going most (but not all the way) through create little crevices for the cheese and pepperoni. When all of the cuts are sufficiently packed with toppings, the whole thing goes in the oven just long enough to melt the cheese.
A similar idea is to make several individual pizza bites that you bake together. Flatten small sections of pizza dough, and top them with small amounts of cheese, pepperoni and other toppings. Pull the edges together and seal them to create a ball. The pizza balls all go on one pan to bake.
Pizza Grilled Cheese
It’s tough to top the traditional version of this comfort food staple, but the pizza grilled cheese does just that. Imagine layers of pepperoni and cheese between perfectly grilled bread. You can add the sauce to the middle of the sandwich, or dip the finished product in some warmed pizza sauce. Whatever your sauce preference, we’re confident this version of the classic grilled cheese will change your life.
A pot of rich, warm soup is the perfect meal on a chilly day — and Chicago has plenty of those. Try something different by whipping up a pot of pizza soup. Think of it as tomato soup with a pizza twist — a rich, tomato base full of melted cheese. Add homemade croutons to create a crust-like flavor. Pair it with your pizza grilled cheese, and you have the greatest pizza-themed meal ever.
Tired of your usual pasta recipe? Shake things up with pizza pasta. It is definitely a thing, and since pasta is the base, you still get your carb fix with this pizza alternative. Like so many of these new-age pizza ideas, the pizza pasta recipe is very flexible. Simply substitute pizza sauce for your usual spaghetti sauce. Add your favorite pizza toppings to customize it. Sausage and pepperoni both work well if you want to make it meaty.
Want more pizza pasta options? Turn your classic lasagna into a pizza-lover’s paradise. You can easily update your own lasagna recipe with a pizza twist. Swap out your usual lasagna sauce with pizza sauce, and add in lots of pepperoni between those pasta layers. Feel free to put in your other favorite pizza toppings for an even greater pizza flavor.
Yet another pasta makeover uses large stuffed shells as the base. Add in cooked ground sausage and pepperoni chunks when you stuff your shells with cheese. Use a jar of pizza sauce instead of your usual pasta sauce as the finishing touch.
Wonton Pizza Cups
In this quick and easy pizza snack, wonton wrappers serve as the pizza crust. These wonton pizza cups are basically mini thin crust pizzas. The wonton wrappers line individual cupcake sections and hold all of the pizza toppings inside. After baking, the wonton edges get nice and crisp, and you have individual pizza portions ready to go for a quick meal or as a party appetizer.
Why should meal time have all the pizza fun? Fruit pizzas serve up a sweet twist on the classic pizza pie. The base is typically a sugar cookie — either one giant cookie or individual sugar cookies for mini fruit pizza. Sweetened cream cheese creates the “sauce,” and various chopped and sliced fruits form the toppings. Sprinkle some coconut on top to look like cheese.
When you can’t decide between burgers and pizza, just remember, you don’t really have to decide. Combine your two true loves into one mind-blowing meal. Pizza burgers come in many forms, but one option to really up the pizza flavor is to blend ground beef and ground sausage to form the patty. Cook your burgers as you normally do. Pizza sauce and melted mozzarella on top of the burger really bring a punch of the pizza flavor. You can even top your pizza burger with pepperoni if you like.
It’s tough to beat a plate of classic nachos; unless you top it with pizza flavors, that is. Pizza nachos will turn you game-day menu upside down. Be warned: you may have more guests than usual when word gets out about your genius nacho dish.
Pizza nachos are just as easy to make as regular nachos. Instead of traditional toppings, cover your favorite tortilla chips with cheese, sausage, pepperoni, black olives, onions and whatever else you like on your pizza. A few minutes under the broiler, and you’re ready to experience nachos like you’ve never experience them before.
A slice of pizza is easy to eat, but if you want an even easier way to grab and eat your favorite meal, try making your own pizza pockets. The idea is to trap the yummy pizza toppings inside an upper and lower crust. Use regular pizza dough or pie crust to for top and bottom crusts the same shape and size. Add the fillings and pinch the edges together before baking. When the pizza pockets finish baking, you end up with a crisp outer crust with the perfect ratio of fillings tucked inside.
If the cheese is your favorite part of pizza, you definitely need to dig into a bowl of pepperoni pizza dip. The snacking delight uses a combination of cream cheese and mozzarella as the bulk of the recipe. Add in pepperoni, marinara and seasonings to create the rich pizza flavor profile you love. Bonus: you can scoop up with up the warm, gooey dip with any sort of edible vessel you prefer: tortilla chips, pita chips, toasted bread or whatever else you have on hand.
If ever a pizza dish begged to be eaten for breakfast, it’s these pizza muffins. Yet they make the perfect snack or quick lunch with their savory flavor in an easy-to-eat package.
The cheese, seasonings and toppings are baked right into the muffin batter, creating a punch of flavor in every bite. Dip the muffins in a side of pizza sauce to get the full pizza effect.
Pizza Potato Skins
It’s game time, but you’re tired of your usual cheese and bacon topped potato skins. What do you do? You cover them in pizza toppings, of course! The potato skins create the perfect little boats to hold your favorite pizza sauce, mozzarella and toppings. You’ll wonder why you didn’t think of this pizza-inspired appetizer sooner.
Remember the Bagel Bites your mom used to buy when you were a kid? You can make your own version at home — and they taste much better. This is another one of those fast and easy snacks to satisfy your pizza craving. You probably have all of the ingredients you need at home.
Simply top a bagel with sauce and pizza toppings. Don’t forget plenty of cheese. Try different flavors of bagels, such as a garlic or everything. English muffins also work in a pinch. You may just create the latest bagel pizza craze with your concoctions.
What happens when you love both Italian and Mexican food? Pizza quesadillas! Like a traditional quesadilla, this pizza alternative starts with a soft tortilla. The cheese, pepperoni, veggies and other toppings go inside. You can use a fancy quesadilla maker, but a hot skillet works just as well to crisp up the tortilla and melt the cheese. A side of pizza sauce for dipping completes this simple meal.
If you’re looking for a light snack rather than a full-on meal, pop up a batch of pizza-flavored popcorn. One version combines melted butter with sundried tomatoes, oregano, basil and red pepper flakes. This mixture is poured over popped popcorn, which then goes into the oven for a few minutes before getting a shower of Parmesan cheese and fresh basil. It requires a few extra steps over your usual popcorn, but the flavor adventure is worth the wait.
Garlic Bread Pizza
Our last innovative way to eat pizza is also one of the easiest. It starts with a slice of garlic bread. If you want to eat in just a few minutes, use the premade frozen garlic bread slices from the store. Pizza toppings and cheese go on the slice, which then bakes into a gooey pizza treat. Your guests will think you’re a culinary genius, and you’ll barely break a sweat making the garlic bread pizzas.
How do you keep pizza night fresh? Go ahead. Experiment with new ways to make pizza. Pair pizza flavors with your regular recipes. Test out new variations on old classics. Get creative with your toppings. We all like a fresh approach to dinner once in a while. When you’re ready for a classic Giordano’s pie, we’ll be waiting for you.