Homemade Hawaiian Pizza

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Aloha, fellow food enthusiasts! Are you ready for a culinary trip to a tropical paradise right in the heart of your kitchen? Our scrumptious Hawaiian pizza recipe will transport your taste buds to the sandy shores of the Pacific, with its irresistible fusion of sweet, salty, and savory flavors. This mouth-watering delight, which has sparked countless debates for decades, combines juicy pineapple chunks, succulent ham, and gooey mozzarella cheese atop a crispy crust, creating an explosion of taste that will make your heart sing.

So, why should the adventurous home chef give this controversial classic a try? Well, it’s the perfect marriage of global culinary heritage and scientific magic. Its origins are a delightful blend of Italian, American, and Canadian influences, as it was first concocted in Ontario in the 1960s. Moreover, it’s a playful nod to the Maillard reaction, that miraculous chemical process responsible for turning your pizza crust golden brown and transforming the sugars in the pineapple into a deliciously caramelized treat. So, go ahead and put on your grass skirt, grab your favorite spatula, and dive into this gastronomic delight that awaits in the next section. You won’t regret it!

Yield & Servings

1 large pizza (8 slices)


1 lb pizza dough (store-bought or homemade)
½ cup pizza sauce
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1 cup diced cooked ham
1 cup pineapple chunks (fresh or canned)
½ cup chopped red onion (optional)
¼ cup chopped green bell pepper (optional)
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

Notable Equipment & Tools

Pizza stone or large baking sheet
Rolling pin
Pizza cutter or sharp knife

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1: Gather and Prep Your Ingredients

All ingredients ready? Let’s begin!

Step 2: Prepare Pizza Stone or Baking Sheet

Preheat your oven to 475°F (245°C). If using a pizza stone, place it in the oven to heat up. If using a baking sheet, lightly grease it and set aside.

Step 3: Roll Out Dough and Transfer to Stone or Baking Sheet

On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pizza dough into a 12-14 inch circle, about 1/4 inch thick. If using a pizza stone, carefully transfer the rolled-out dough onto a piece of parchment paper. If using a baking sheet, transfer the dough onto the prepared sheet.

Step 4: Spread Sauce on Dough

Evenly spread the pizza sauce over the dough, leaving a small border around the edges.

Step 5: Add Mozzarella Cheese

Sprinkle the shredded mozzarella cheese over the sauce.

Step 6: Add Ham, Pineapple, and Optional Toppings

Evenly distribute the diced ham, pineapple chunks, and optional red onion, green bell pepper, and cilantro over the cheese.

Step 7: Bake and Cool Pizza

Carefully transfer the pizza (with parchment paper if using a pizza stone) onto the preheated pizza stone or place the baking sheet in the oven. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown and the cheese is bubbly and melted. Remove the pizza from the oven and let it cool for a few minutes.

Step 8: Slice Pizza into Pieces

Use a pizza cutter or sharp knife to slice the pizza into 8 equal pieces.

Step 9: Enjoy Your Homemade Hawaiian Pizza

Enjoy your delicious Hawaiian pizza!

Substitutions & Alternatives

Don’t want to say Aloha to your waistline? No worries! Our Hawaiian pizza recipe has got you covered with some fantastic swaps and substitutes to keep your taste buds and your waistline dancing the hula.

  1. Dough-lightful alternatives: If you’re looking to cut down on your carbs or gluten intake, try using a cauliflower crust or a store-bought gluten-free pizza crust. You can also up the whole-grain factor by using a whole wheat pizza dough.
  2. Sauce it up: While classic pizza sauce is a staple, feel free to mix it up with a barbecue sauce, garlic-herb sauce, or even a spicy sriracha sauce for a little kick. Just make sure to use a sauce that complements your toppings!
  3. Cheese, please: Mozzarella is a classic choice, but don’t be afraid to branch out to other cheese options! Some tasty alternatives include provolone, gouda, or a sharp cheddar. For a dairy-free option, try using your favorite vegan cheese substitute.
  4. The meat of the matter: If ham isn’t your jam, you can easily substitute cooked and crumbled bacon, sliced Canadian bacon, or turkey ham for a leaner option. Vegetarians can also get in on the Hawaiian pizza fun by using meat-free alternatives like tempeh bacon or plant-based ham slices.
  5. Pineapple paradise: Fresh pineapple is the shining star of this pizza, but if you’re in a pinch or prefer a different texture, canned pineapple chunks (in juice, not syrup) will work just fine. Just be sure to drain them well to avoid a soggy pizza!
  6. Veg out: The optional red onion, green bell pepper, and cilantro add extra flavor boosts to this pizza, but feel free to cater to your taste buds. Swap in your favorite veggies, like diced tomatoes, jalapeño slices, or artichoke hearts, for a personalized twist on this tropical favorite.
  7. Spice it up: If you’re craving a little heat, try adding a sprinkle of crushed red pepper flakes, a dash of cayenne pepper, or even a drizzle of spicy honey to elevate your Hawaiian pizza experience. Just remember, a little goes a long way!

With these versatile substitutions and alternatives, even the pickiest of eaters will be saying Mahalo! to this delicious Hawaiian pizza recipe. So grab your ukulele, put on your grass skirt, and get ready to create a pizza that will transport you to a tropical paradise in every bite. Happy cooking!

Storage & Reheating

Let’s not kid ourselves; pizza leftovers are a true delight, and Hawaiian pizza is no exception. So, whether you’re strategically planning your next day’s lunch or simply have some slices remaining after your pizza party, we’ve got you covered.

Firstly, give your pizza the royal treatment by storing it in an airtight container. If you don’t have one large enough, don’t panic! Wrap each slice individually in plastic wrap or aluminum foil before placing it in the fridge. A bonus tidbit: Hawaiian pizza, with its beautiful blend of savory ham and sweet pineapple, can last for up to 4 days in the refrigerator. This gives you plenty of time to enjoy this culinary masterpiece of Polynesian-inspired flavors (though we doubt it’ll last that long).

Now, let’s talk about reheating. Sure, you could eat cold pizza straight from the fridge like an absolute barbarian, but for those who prefer a warm, melty experience, we suggest using an oven or toaster oven to reheat your Hawaiian treasure. Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C) and place your pizza slices directly on the oven rack or on a baking sheet for 5-8 minutes, or until the cheese is melty and the crust is crispy again. Keep an eye on your slices to avoid turning your tropical delight into a charred mess.

Microwaving is also an option, but you might lose some of that crispiness in the crust. If you do go the microwave route, we recommend placing a small glass of water in the microwave to help maintain moisture levels and prevent your pizza from turning into a chewy, rubbery mess. Reheat on medium power for 1-2 minutes, or until heated through.

Regardless of your reheating method, your Hawaiian pizza will once again transport you to a tasty tropical paradise. Grab a slice and enjoy! Aloha!

Serving Ideas

Say aloha to a tropical-themed pizza night! Set the mood by laying out some Hawaiian decorations like leis or tropical flowers as centerpieces. Add a touch of humor by playing some island tunes and encouraging your guests to wear their favorite Hawaiian shirts.

  1. Let’s go global! Pair your Hawaiian pizza with other international-inspired dishes for a fun, culinary adventure. Consider serving a light, citrusy Caprese salad from Italy, some crispy Greek-style oven-roasted potatoes, and finish the meal with a French fruit tart for dessert.
  2. Take your pizza party outside! Embrace the spirit of the Hawaiian islands and enjoy your meal al fresco. Set up a comfortable picnic area in your backyard or at a local park, and invite your friends and family to join you in savoring your homemade pizza while taking in the fresh air.
  3. Offer a variety of toppings for a build-your-own Hawaiian pizza bar. Set out bowls of diced ham, pineapple chunks, red onion, and green bell pepper, along with additional toppings like crumbled bacon, sliced jalapenos, and even barbecue sauce for a twist. Allow each guest to customize their slice and let their culinary creativity run wild!
  4. Emphasize freshness by using locally sourced ingredients, especially if you’re lucky enough to live somewhere with access to fresh pineapple. The sweet, juicy flavor of a just-picked pineapple will elevate your pizza to new heights and make it truly unforgettable.
  5. Don’t forget the drinks! Pair your Hawaiian pizza with a refreshing tropical cocktail, such as a piña colada or a fruity sangria. For a non-alcoholic option, serve sparkling water infused with pineapple chunks, mint leaves, and a splash of lime juice.
  6. Last but not least, share the love! Show off your culinary skills by gifting a Hawaiian pizza to a neighbor or friend. They’ll appreciate the effort and be delighted by the burst of tropical flavors.

Remember, the key to serving your Hawaiian pizza is to have fun, embrace the spirit of aloha, and most importantly, enjoy the delicious combination of ham, pineapple, and gooey mozzarella cheese. Happy feasting!

Variations & Customization

We understand that everyone’s taste buds and dietary needs are diverse, so let’s talk about some popular variations and customizations to make this Hawaiian pizza recipe a perfect fit for your unique preferences and dietary restrictions!

  1. Gluten-Free: For those who are gluten-sensitive or have celiac disease, simply replace the regular pizza dough with a gluten-free dough. Many stores carry gluten-free pizza dough or mixes, or you can make your own using gluten-free flour blends. Just be sure to check all other ingredients for hidden gluten sources!
  2. Vegan: To make this pizza vegan-friendly, use a dairy-free cheese substitute like shredded vegan mozzarella, and replace the ham with a plant-based alternative like vegan ham slices, tempeh, or even marinated tofu. Make sure your pizza dough and sauce are also free from animal-derived ingredients.
  3. GAPS/AIP: For those on the Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAPS) or Autoimmune Protocol (AIP) diets, replace the regular pizza dough with a grain-free dough made from almond or cassava flour. Remove any nightshades (green pepper) and use an AIP-friendly sauce option like a white sauce made from cauliflower or a pesto sauce.
  4. Keto: To make this recipe suitable for a ketogenic diet, replace the conventional pizza dough with a low-carb, high-fat alternative like a fathead dough or a crust made from cauliflower or almond flour. Consider increasing the amount of cheese and ham to boost the fat content. Double-check all other ingredients to ensure they are low-carb friendly.
  5. Customize your toppings: The beauty of pizza is that you can top it with any of your favorite ingredients. If Hawaiian pizza isn’t your go-to, feel free to mix and match toppings to suit your cravings. Some popular options include pepperoni, sausage, mushrooms, olives, and spinach – or even go wild and try unconventional toppings like eggs, artichokes, or anchovies!
  6. Spice it up: For those who enjoy a little heat, consider adding some spicy elements to your pizza. Jalapeños, red pepper flakes, or a drizzle of hot sauce can all add some zing to your Hawaiian pizza experience.

The possibilities are endless when it comes to customizing your Hawaiian pizza. Let your taste buds and dietary needs guide you, and have fun experimenting with unique combinations to create a pizza masterpiece that’s perfect for you! After all, variety is the spice of life, and pizza is no exception. Bon appétit

Notes & Tips

  • Pineapple preferences: If you’re a die-hard fan of Hawaiian pizza, you may already know that using fresh pineapple gives an unbeatable taste. However, if you’re using canned pineapple, make sure to drain the juice well, as excess moisture can make your pizza soggy. Embrace the tropical vibes and give your taste buds a vacation!
  • Ham it up: While cooked ham is the traditional choice for this pizza, feel free to experiment with other types of ham or even bacon for an extra smoky flavor. Pro-tip: if using bacon, cook it partially before adding it to the pizza, as it will crisp up nicely during baking.
  • Get saucy: You can customize the pizza sauce to suit your taste preferences. Consider spicing it up with a pinch of red pepper flakes or a dash of your favorite hot sauce. Alternatively, take a trip around the culinary globe and try BBQ sauce or a garlic-herb infused olive oil as your base.
  • Crust creativity: For a fun twist on the classic, try using a whole wheat, gluten-free, or cauliflower crust. The world is your pizza, and you’re the master of your crusty domain!
  • Real hot stuff: Preheating your pizza stone (or baking sheet) is crucial for achieving a crispy crust. The high heat ensures that your pizza will cook evenly and quickly, giving you that perfect crunch with every bite.
  • Keep it cool: Let your pizza rest for a few minutes after removing it from the oven. This not only prevents burned mouths, but it also allows the cheese to set, making it easier to slice and enjoy.
  • A matter of taste: Remember, the optional ingredients listed in the recipe are just suggestions. Feel free to explore with other toppings like jalapeños, olives, or even artichoke hearts. Make your Hawaiian pizza a unique masterpiece that reflects your flavor journey!
  • Time-saving tip: If you’re in a rush, consider prepping the ingredients in advance. Have your ham diced, veggies chopped, and cheese shredded before pizza night to make assembly a breeze.
  • Sharing is caring: Hawaiian pizza is a crowd-pleaser, so why not double the recipe and make two pizzas? Share the deliciousness with friends, family, or even your friendly neighbor who always returns your gardening tools.
  • Say cheese: While mozzarella is the go-to cheese for this pizza, feel free to get adventurous and try a blend of cheeses, like adding a sprinkle of sharp cheddar or a touch of smoky provolone. There’s no such thing as too much cheese, right?

Embrace your inner pizzaiolo, and get ready to create a culinary masterpiece that will have your taste buds doing the hula! Aloha, pizza lovers!

Common Mistakes

  • Going pineapple-crazy: While pineapple is the star of the show in a Hawaiian pizza, too much can make the pizza soggy and unbalanced. Stick to the recommended one cup of pineapple chunks, and make sure they’re well-drained if using canned pineapple. Plus, restrain yourself from adding other unusually wet toppings (looking at you, tropical fruit lovers).
  • Skipping the preheat: It’s tempting to save time by slipping the pizza into a cold oven, but this can lead to a soggy, undercooked crust. Preheating the oven (and pizza stone, if you’re using one) ensures a crispy, delicious crust that’s fully cooked through.
  • Overloading on toppings: While it’s fun to personalize your pizza, adding too many toppings can weigh down the dough and make it difficult to cook evenly. Stick to the recommended amounts of ham, pineapple, and optional veggies, or feel free to mix and match while keeping the total volume in check.
  • Rolling a wonky dough: Rolling out the pizza dough can be a bit of an art form, but a lumpy or uneven crust can lead to uneven cooking or a less-than-ideal texture. Take your time rolling out the dough to an even thickness, and don’t worry if it’s not a perfect circle – rustic is in!
  • Forgetting the parchment paper: If you’re using a pizza stone, don’t forget to place your dough on a piece of parchment paper before adding the toppings. This makes transferring the pizza to and from the hot stone much easier and prevents any tragic pizza-stuck-to-stone situations.
  • Impatience with cooling: We know you’re eager to dig into that delicious Hawaiian pizza, but cutting into it immediately after removing it from the oven can cause the cheese to slide off and create a mess. Give your pizza a few minutes to cool and set before slicing and serving.

Remember, practice makes perfect. As you learn from these common mistakes, you’ll find yourself becoming a Hawaiian pizza expert. Happy baking!

Health Risks & Benefits

Hawaiian pizza, a delectable tropical twist on a classic dish, boasts some impressive health benefits while also carrying a few minor risks. But hey, nothing in life is without its trade-offs, right?

First, let’s celebrate the good stuff. Our main topping stars, pineapple and ham, provide a delicious helping of essential nutrients. Pineapple is packed with vitamins C and A, manganese, and the antioxidant bromelain. These can boost your immune system, improve digestion, and reduce inflammation. Plus, they add a sweet and tangy kick to your pizza game. The ham, meanwhile, serves up a hefty dose of protein, iron, and B vitamins, which support muscle growth, brain function, and overall health.

The optional toppings – red onion, green bell pepper, and cilantro – provide even more nutritional benefits. They contain antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals that have been linked to improved heart health and better digestion. Not to mention, they add a pop of color and flavor to your pizza, making it a mouthwatering work of art.

However, before we crown this pizza the king of healthy meals, let’s address some risks. The dough, cheese, and sauce can be high in sodium and calories, which may not be ideal for those watching their salt intake or waistline. But fear not, pizza lovers! You can make some simple swaps to minimize these concerns. Opt for whole wheat dough, a light sprinkle of low-fat cheese, and a low-sodium sauce to make your Hawaiian pizza a little more saintly.

Ultimately, it’s all about balance. Enjoy your scrumptious Hawaiian pizza in moderation, and bask in the flavorful fusion of health benefits and culinary delight. Aloha!

Recipe History & Context

Aloha, pizza lovers! Let’s dive into the history of the mouthwatering Hawaiian pizza, a tropical twist on a classic Italian dish that has delighted taste buds all over the world. While the name suggests an origin story from the beautiful islands of Hawaii, this scrumptious pizza concoction was actually born in the land of maple syrup – Canad
The Hawaiian pizza was invented in 1962 by Greek-Canadian chef Sam Panopoulos at his restaurant, the Satellite, in Chatham, Ontario. Inspired by the mix of savory and sweet flavors, Sam had the ingenious idea to combine ham and pineapple on a pizza, giving birth to the now-iconic Hawaiian pizza. Interestingly, the name Hawaiian doesn’t come from the recipe’s ingredients or its place of origin, but from the brand of canned pineapple used by Panopoulos. One could say the tropical flavors were a nod to the beautiful beaches and laid-back lifestyle of Hawaii, even if the recipe was concocted thousands of miles away.

Hawaiian pizza quickly gained popularity in North America and around the globe, becoming a staple on pizzeria menus everywhere. It’s a true celebration of global culinary heritage, with Italian pizza roots, Greek innovation, Canadian origin, and a touch of Hawaiian inspiration. Of course, the combination of sweet and savory has sparked some heated debates among pizza enthusiasts (we’re looking at you, pineapple-on-pizza naysayers), but there’s no denying the magic that happens when ham and pineapple unite on a cheesy, saucy pizza pie.

So, whether you’re a long-time Hawaiian pizza fan or a curious first-timer, embrace the global culinary adventure that is this delicious, tropical-flavored delight. And remember, there’s no need to book a flight to a far-off island to enjoy the flavors of paradise – a homemade Hawaiian pizza is just a few simple steps away. On your marks, get set, and let the taste of sweet pineapple, savory ham, and gooey cheese transport you to a tropical pizza paradise!

Common Questions

Can I use a different type of cheese besides mozzarella?

While mozzarella is the classic choice for Hawaiian pizza, feel free to experiment with other types of cheese! Provolone, Monterey Jack, or even a blend of cheeses could add a unique twist to your pizza. Just be sure to stick with cheeses that melt well and have a mild flavor so they don’t overpower the other ingredients.

Can I use other types of meat besides ham?

Absolutely! If you’re not a fan of ham or simply want to try something different, you can substitute it with other meats like crispy bacon or grilled chicken. You could also go for a vegetarian Hawaiian pizza by leaving out the meat altogether and adding extra veggies like sweetcorn or mushrooms.

Is there a way to make this pizza healthier?

To make your Hawaiian pizza a little healthier, try using a whole wheat pizza dough, which will provide more fiber and nutrients than regular dough. You can also opt for reduced-fat cheese and leaner cuts of ham, like Canadian bacon or turkey ham. Additionally, feel free to load up on extra veggies, like spinach, cherry tomatoes, or zucchini, for added vitamins and minerals.

Can I add spices or herbs to give the pizza more flavor?

Of course! The beauty of homemade pizza is that you can customize it to your liking. Try sprinkling some dried oregano, basil, or red pepper flakes over the top before baking, or drizzle a little garlic-infused olive oil after it comes out of the oven. The fresh cilantro in the recipe also adds a bright, herbaceous touch that complements the sweet pineapple and savory ham.

Can I freeze leftovers for later?

Yes! Hawaiian pizza freezes surprisingly well. To freeze leftovers, first let the pizza cool completely. Then, wrap individual slices tightly in plastic wrap and place them in a zip-top freezer bag or airtight container. They can be stored in the freezer for up to 3 months. To reheat, simply pop the frozen slices directly into a preheated oven (350°F/175°C) for 10-15 minutes, or until heated through and the cheese is bubbly again. Happy munching!

Hawaiian Pizza

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 8 slices
Calories: 271kcal


  • Pizza stone or large baking sheet
  • Rolling Pin
  • Pizza cutter or sharp knife


  • 1 lb pizza dough
  • ½ cup pizza sauce
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 cup diced cooked ham
  • 1 cup pineapple chunks
  • ½ cup chopped red onion optional
  • ¼ cup chopped green bell pepper optional
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro optional


  • Preheat oven to 475°F (245°C). Place pizza stone in the oven or grease a baking sheet.
  • Roll out pizza dough into a 12-14 inch circle, 1/4 inch thick.
  • Transfer dough to parchment paper (for pizza stone) or prepared baking sheet.
  • Spread pizza sauce over dough, leaving a small border.
  • Sprinkle mozzarella cheese over sauce.
  • Distribute ham, pineapple, and optional ingredients over cheese.
  • Transfer pizza to preheated pizza stone or place baking sheet in the oven.
  • Bake for 15-20 minutes, until crust is golden brown and cheese is melted.
  • Remove pizza from oven and let cool for a few minutes.
  • Slice into 8 equal pieces and enjoy!



Calories: 271kcal | Carbohydrates: 34g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 32mg | Sodium: 822mg | Potassium: 168mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 322IU | Vitamin C: 12mg | Calcium: 152mg | Iron: 2mg

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