These little pizzas tucked away in your freezer for a crazy busy day are pure gold. Take one out, toss it straight into the oven for a few minutes, and before you know it you have a hot tasty pizza for a snack or paired up with a salad it can be dinner! I love these cheesy bites on a busy weekend or an evening where I don’t feel like cooking. All you need to do is cook them a little less, then cool and wrap with cling film and overwrap with foil.
Don’t let the idea of making your own dough and yeast scare you. Pizza dough is actually really quite easy to make and this recipe is pretty forgiving. Besides tasting better, making your own dough is really economical and once you get the hang of it, you’ll wonder why you didn’t try it sooner! Feel free to use this dough for your own traditional pizzas and whatever toppings your heart desires. Spiced ricotta and chicken make these a welcome change from the usual pizza, and are fantastic on a night when you need inspiration.
- 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 1/4 tsp instant yeast
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp sugar
- 2/3 cup very warm water (between 105-110F)
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 2/3 cup ricotta cheese
- 3 Tbsp olive oil
- pinch pepper flakes
- 1/4 tsp basil
- 3 garlic cloves, crushed
- 3 sprigs of fresh thyme
- 1 cup of cooked, chopped chicken
- 1 3/4 cups Italian cheese, or a mixture of your favourites: mozzarella, freshly grated Parmesan and cheddar
- Measure the flours, yeast, sugar, and salt in a bowl. Give it a good whisk to combine.
- A liquid measuring cup, stir together the oil and water. Combine with the flour and stir, adding more warm water if needed, a little at a time until it comes together in a ball. If you are using a stand mixer, this can be done all in the mixer-all the dough to mix about 3-4 min to knead it.
- If you’re making the dough by hand, turn it out onto a lightly floured counter and knead for about 4 minutes. The dough should be smooth and elastic.
- Lightly oil a large bowl and place the dough in it, turning to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and set somewhere warm for about an hour
- While the dough is rising, put the olive oil, thyme sprigs, pepper flakes, basil, and garlic in a small pot on the stove over low heat. Bring the heat up so that the garlic is sizzling. Cook and stir until the garlic is just lightly golden. You DO NOT want to cook it until the garlic is a dark brown or the oil will have a bitter taste. Let cool, then strain the oil and set aside. Discard the solids. Stir the cooled oil into the ricotta cheese.
- When the dough is ready, turn your oven on to 450F. Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured counter and give it a bit of a knead to knock out some of the air bubbles. Split it into six equal sized pieces. One at a time, roll each piece into a six inch circle and place onto a rimmed baking sheet. Once the crusts are all rolled, spread about 1 – 1 1/2 tbsps of the ricotta cheese mixture onto each. Divide the shredded, cooked chicken between each pizza. Divide the cheese between each pizza as well.
Bake the pizzas for about 15 – 20 minutes until the bottoms are golden and the cheese is bubbling and starting to brown a little on top.
Make ahead: Bake the pizzas for 8 minutes. Cool to room temperature, then overwrap each with foil, place in a sealed plastic bag, and freeze. To reheat from frozen, unwrap a frozen pizza and bake in a hot 450F oven for 10-12 minutes.
Author: Karen Humphrey
Karen lives in the Fraser Valley of British Columbia where she is mom to her grown son Kevin (21) and wife to John. By day, she works in an elementary school and can be found flipping pancakes in the breakfast program or teaching kids to read, calculate math and cook. She’s known for getting reluctant eaters to try new things-especially vegetables! In her spare time you’ll find Karen reading, in the kitchen experimenting, drinking coffee, or out with the husband on their Yamaha motorcycle.