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Pizza Night: One of Our Family's Healthiest Meals

Easy to make and nutritious

Pizza can be healthy and nutritious

Ever since I got married in 1992, Friday nights have been pizza night. Back then my husband and I ate a typical New York pizza. We would go to a local pizzeria and order a medium pizza with lots of cheese. Clearly this was not a healthy meal. Our tradition of pizza on Friday nights continued even after we had kids. As I grew more concerned about our family’s eating habits, I started to make pizza at home. I got dough from the grocery store or made dough at home. We always had our own sauce in the fridge.  The homemade pizzas had cheese on them. Looking back on this, I cringe at how unhealthy it was despite being made at home. 

After my father passed away and I plunged into my new lifestyle, pizza night changed for us. Initially I made large batches of my own whole wheat dough that I would freeze for use later. Then as I got strapped for time, I started purchasing the grocery store’s whole wheat dough. Several years ago, I found a great brand of prebaked pizza crust called Wood Grilled. They have a 100% whole grain pizza crust that is very tasty, with few ingredients. 

(roasting eggplant)

We apply our sauce which typically has veggie crumbles and roasted eggplant. But you can certainly use store-bought sauce. The toppings include onions, peppers, mushrooms, olives, and nutritional yeast. I don't use vegan cheese because they are all high in fat and don't add to the taste of the pizza for me. 

READ MORE: Easy wholesome eating for kids

Another version of pizza we make uses a basil pesto made with almonds and basil. The toppings are homemade caponata (Sicilian eggplant relish) and red peppers. The pizza bakes at 400 degrees. It takes about 20-25 minutes.

Interestingly, when we went to Italy in 2013, we were surprised that the pizzerias had many pizza options that did not have any cheese at all. Pizza nights are easy, delicious, and healthy for us!!

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