We like pizza. Like a lot. We have pizza night every Friday (sometimes more often than that too…). But sometimes the classic go-to cheese pizza can get a little old, not to mention isn’t very healthy.
First, Meal Plan Strategically
We’ve recommitted ourselves to meal planning on Sundays. This time around, we’ve created a “default” meal plan which we follow if we slip up and forget to plan our meals for the week. In order to make our default meal plan work, we have a set menu and ingredients planned out. These staples allow us to make the planned meals without much thought or effort and give us the flexibility to switch up the menu with little waste or cost. For example, we always have onions and tomatoes on hand. These ingredients can easily be thrown in a salad, used in pasta, or on a pizza so they won’t go to waste.
For example, our “default” menu is the following:
- Monday: Protein Bowls. Staple Ingredients: Sweet potatoes, onions, broccoli, spinach, beans, bell peppers, rice.
- Tuesday: A big soup, crockpot meal, or casserole. Staple Ingredients: Carrots, Celery, Onions, Potatoes, Tomatoes, Mushrooms, Pasta, Beans, bread
- Wednesday: Leftovers from Tuesday.
- Thursday: Pasta Staple Ingredients: Pasta, Tomatoes, herbs, bread, cheese
- Friday: Pizza Staple Ingredients: Dough, Tomatoes, herbs, cheese
I’ll write another post about the specifics around our meal planning strategy and how it works for us. But the idea is that we always have a selection of ingredients handy to make pizza on Fridays!
Waste Not, Want Not
Sometimes the struggle with meal planning is that we have excess vegetables that don’t get used by the end of the week. These end up going bad and getting tossed (or composted!). It crushes me to waste good food and money.
So, to avoid good veggies going to waste and add a little color to the usual pizza – I’ve been switching up our classic cheese or margarita pizzas on Fridays to be veggie pizzas! I love the extra flavor from the veggies and I can fill up on a pizza with veggies a lot faster than just plain cheese.
Keep Pizza Ingredients Handy
We always have some form of pizza dough on hand. Sometimes I’ll make my own, but at the end of a hard week, we like to keep a premade dough handy. I like Wewalka Bistro Style crust (usually in the refrigerated section near the cinnamon rolls) or Boboli (in the unrefrigerated section near baking or pasta usually).
If you want to venture into making your own dough – The Preppy Kitchen and Sally’s Baking Addiction have good recipes to try out!
I also try to keep pizza sauce handy because it’s typically thicker than pasta sauce. However, if we’re out, pasta sauce can do the trick in a pinch! I’ll try to reduce it down by cooking it in a pan for 15-20 minutes to thicken it up a bit.
The best part of this veggie pizza is that it’s super cost effective and you can change up the ingredients to include what you have on hand. I’ve been playing around with leftover veggie combinations and one of my favorites is below. Give the recipe a try and let me know what you think in the comments!Print
Classic Veggie Pizza
A great way to use leftover veggies and add a little color to the classic pizza!
- 1 pizza crust (premade or dough baked according to instructions)
- 1/2 jar of pizza sauce
- 1 medium firm roma tomato, sliced
- 1/4 small red onion, sliced
- 1/2 bell pepper, sliced
- 3 mushrooms, sliced
- 3 stalks of broccolini (or baby broccoli)
- 6–7 slices fresh mozzarella cheese
- 1/4 cup parmesan
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees or as instructed for your dough recipe.
- Spread a layer of pizza sauce on the crust.
- Layer the fresh mozzarella on the sauce, covering as much surface as possible but leaving ~1 inch on the outer edge for the crust.
- Layer on the veggies.
- Sprinkle with Parmesan.
- Bake until the cheese is melted and just beginning to get golden.