Basil Whole Wheat Pizza

In Main dish on May 29, 2010 at 8:02 pm


Confession of a foodie: A mere two years ago, I was such a food n00b that I was shocked to learn that people could make pizza at home!  When someone suggested making their own pizza, I thought it was impossible because pizzas were clearly produced by a gigantic and magical pizza machine that we obviously lacked.  How were we supposed to create the same greasy monstrosity that Papa Johns pumped out of their pizza machines?

SHOCKINGANSWER:  People make their own pizzas all the time and they do not have to be loaded with grease and fat.

Learn more after the jump…

There are a few steps that one can take to reduce the amount of unnecessary trans fat and empty calories in a pizza.

First, use a whole wheat pizza crust or homemade pizza crust.  While I would love to make my own dough, I hardly have enough time to do my laundry, let alone watch dough rise.  Instead, I use an organic, pre-made, whole-wheat pizza crust.  I strongly recommend Rustic Crust; it is absolutely DELICIOUS!  I could eat just this crust all day.  Also, 1/4 of this dough will give you 32.5% of your daily fiber needs!  I buy mine at my local Co-Op.

Rustic Crust

Second, reduce or eliminate the cheese.  Try your pizza without cheese- if you make a full-flavored pizza with a lot of marinara sauce, you truly will not miss the cheese.  If you must use cheese, I recommend using fat-free or part-skim mozzarella cheese and using as little as possible.  In the recipe below, I used <1/4 cup- just enough to get a little color and please Josh, my boyfriend.  Now that he has tried this pizza and absolutely loves it, I will completely eliminate the cheese next time.

Third, don’t use meat (you had to see that one coming- this is a vegetarian blog, after all).  Instead, load your pizza with delicious and healthy vegetables, fruits and/or spices.  There are many vegetables and fruits that are absolutely wonderful on a pizza, such as mushrooms, tomatoes, broccoli, spinach, pineapple, and mango.  You really can’t go wrong… although I wouldn’t recommend grapes.  If you use fruits or vegetables that excrete water when they cook, either drain them or cook them ahead of time so your pizza is not soggy.

Also, either use an organic, low-sodium marinara sauce or make your own sauce.  Per usual, I chose the former option.

Finally, don’t use oil.  Plain and simple.  I don’t abhor oil but if you make pizza the same way that I do, it is not necessary.

To prevent overeating, I recommend prefacing the pizza consumption with a nice salad.  I didn’t do that tonight but a dinner salad is often a nice addition.


  • 1 tomato, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 3 fresh whole white mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 pre-baked, whole-wheat, organic pizza crust (ex. Rustic Crust)
  • 1/2 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh or dried basil
  • 1/2 jalapeño pepper (or to taste, optional)
  • 2/3 cup organic, low sodium marinara sauce
  • 3 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1/4 cup fat-free or part-skim mozzarella or soy cheese (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. Put the diced tomatoes in a strainer and let them drain as your prepare the other ingredients.
  3. Lightly spray the bottom of a pan with non-stick spray. Sauté the mushrooms over low heat until the water is expelled.
  4. Spread the garlic over the crust.
  5. Combine the Italian seasoning and marinara sauce in a bowl.
  6. In a separate bowl, combine the drained tomatoes, onion, basil, jalapeno, and mushrooms.
  7. Spread the marinara sauce evenly over the pizza crust, leaving about 1’’ around the perimeter untouched.
  8. Distribute the bowl of vegetables and spices over the marinara sauce.
  9. If you elect to use cheese, sprinkle it over the top of the pizza.
  10. Bake the pizza in the pre-heated oven for 10 minutes.

While it will be hard to resist, let the pizza cool for 5 minutes before devouring!



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