Grilled Pizza Goes Gourmet

>> Tuesday, June 29, 2010

We talk a lot about grilling pizzas. And if you're looking for another good use for that pumpkin pizza dough, look no further. Tthis is the post for you. The first few times you grill pizza, it'll be difficult. If you have yet to learn this critical life skill, read about it in this post. The steps go on for days . . . and it seems you have to do everything at once.

But that's only partially true.

Once you get the hang of it, grilling pizza will be your favorite thing to do. You'll find yourself begging your roommate or significant other to charge up the grill on a Wednesday night, even though it takes at least a couple more hours to make a meal that way. You will no longer care, friends, because the reward tastes oh-so sweet. Or savory? However it tastes, it's GOOD.

Grilled pizzas can be the vehicle for your ultimate expression of creativity in (or outside of) the kitchen. And we've surely been getting adventurous with our grilled pizzas. Skipping the standard tomato sauce and mozzarella, changing up the dough recipe so it holds more moisture (and, therefore, won't immediately burn when placed atop flame).

It's all about thinking beyond the traditional. Thinking about what ingredients rock your socks off. Because if a certain combination sounds delicious to you, it's sure to please your friends, too.


Before you start your journey, you'll need to travel back to the Pumpkin Garlic Knots post and follow the instructions to make the dough. Better yet, get creative with this recipe, too. The pumpkin puree can be replaced by butternut squash puree. Sweet potato puree. Applesauce! Anything that has the same texture, composition, and -- of course -- wow factor. Technical reason: Adding puree ensures optimal moisture content.

Sauce is something we've often overlooked with pizzas in our past. And we're still experimenting with crazy combinations . . . but to get a start, just make the basic sauce below and add in a couple of fun ingredients to kick it up a notch. (To cook the sauce, just combine all ingredients and heat.)


What you'll need . . .
  • 2 cups chopped tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoons tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

Make your sauce more interesting by adding one or more of the following . . .
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup walnuts (food processed into a meal)
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 2 teaspoons maple syrup, honey, agave or other sweetener
  • Try a pesto sauce!
  • Try some of these awesome recipes (including barbecue, peanut, and alfredo!)
  • Try NO sauce for a white pizza -- just drizzle with olive oil


I like to roast our grilled pizza toppings before placing them on the pizza because it means less time the dough needs to be on the grill (so less chance of over-cooking). And you need to do is slice, spread (on a cookie sheet), drizzle (with olive oil), and sprinkle (with salt and pepper). Set your oven to broil and roast while you do all your other pizza-related stuff.

Consider adding the following items (or combining a few!) . . .
  • Chickpeas
  • Radishes
  • Asparagus
  • Leeks
  • Kale
  • Carrots
  • Black beans
  • Shiitake mushrooms
  • Avocado (don't roast this one!)
  • Scrambled eggs (for a breakfast pizza)
  • Etc. to the MOON!
  • . . . and you need not stick with the standard mozzarella, think about slapping on some brie, cheddar, pepper-jack, gorgonzola, and other artisan cheeses!

Now I KNOW we're no the first people to top pizzas with wild ingredients. What do you do to make your pie special? Let us know -- we're always up for new ideas. Just leave a comment or email us at neverhomemaker [at] gmail [dot] com.

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