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Calling all pizza lovers! Has your taste-buds’ world been rocked by the magical, gooey goodness of a white sauce pizza yet? If not, you’re in for a life-changing culinary experience! This mouthwatering recipe takes the traditional tomato sauce out of the equation and replaces it with a rich and creamy white sauce that will make every slice feel like a warm hug to your soul. The combination of velvety sauce, flavorful toppings, and perfectly baked crust creates an unforgettable symphony of flavors that will make you wonder why you’ve ever settled for just another red sauce pizza.
But wait, there’s more! The versatility of the white sauce pizza is truly a wondrous thing. You can play around with a variety of toppings and cheese combinations to create a masterpiece that is uniquely yours. From classic favorites like chicken and spinach to more adventurous choices like prosciutto and fig, the possibilities are endless. And the best part? With the expert cooking advice we’ve got in store for you, even beginners can whip up this decadent delight in their own kitchen. So put on your apron, channel your inner pizza maestro, and get ready to embark on a gastronomic journey that will leave you weak in the knees (and possibly questioning your allegiance to red-sauce pizzas). Dive into the next section to discover the secrets of making the perfect white sauce pizza!
Yield & Servings
1 large pizza (8 slices)
1 lb pizza dough
1 cup ricotta cheese
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
¼ cup heavy cream
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
Optional toppings: spinach, mushrooms, onions, tomatoes, cooked chicken, etc.
Notable Equipment & Tools
Large baking sheet or pizza stone
Spoon or spatula
Step 1: Gather and Prep Your Ingredients
All ingredients ready? Let’s begin! Preheat your oven to 475°F (245°C). If using a pizza stone, place it in the oven to preheat as well.
Step 2: Prepare White Sauce with Cheese and Seasonings
In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese, heavy cream, salt, black pepper, and garlic powder. Mix well to create the white sauce.
Step 3: Roll Out Pizza Dough on Floured Surface
On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pizza dough into a large circle, about 12 inches in diameter.
Step 4: Transfer Dough to Parchment-Lined Baking Sheet or Pizza Stone
If using a baking sheet, line it with parchment paper. Transfer the rolled-out dough onto the parchment paper or preheated pizza stone.
Step 5: Brush Dough with Olive Oil
Brush the dough with olive oil, leaving a 1-inch border around the edges.
Step 6: Spread White Sauce on Dough
Spread the white sauce evenly over the dough, leaving the 1-inch border.
Step 7: Add Mozzarella Cheese
Sprinkle the shredded mozzarella cheese evenly over the white sauce.
Step 8: Add Desired Toppings
Add your desired toppings, distributing them evenly over the cheese. Transfer the pizza to the oven, either on the parchment-lined baking sheet or directly onto the preheated pizza stone.
Step 9: Bake Pizza Until Golden and Bubbly
Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown and the cheese is melted and bubbly.
Step 10: Enjoy your simple white sauce pizza!
Remove the pizza from the oven and let it cool for a few minutes before slicing and serving. Enjoy your homemade white sauce pizza!
Substitutions & Alternatives
Fear not, my fellow pizza lovers! This delightful white sauce pizza recipe is just as customizable as you are unique. So let’s dive into a world of tasty substitutions and alternatives that will make your pizza night a true culinary adventure.
Cheese swaps: If ricotta cheese isn’t your cup of tea or there’s an unfortunate shortage in your fridge, you can substitute it with cottage cheese or even cream cheese. Just make sure to adjust the consistency with a little extra heavy cream if needed. And for a kick of extra flavor, try adding different types of cheese like provolone, fontina, or Gruyère to the shredded mozzarella.
Veg out on toppings: Embrace your inner veggie lover by adding healthier options like fresh or roasted bell peppers, zucchini, artichoke hearts, olives, or even those cute little cherry tomatoes. Think of your pizza as a canvas, and paint it with the colors of the vegetable rainbow!
Protein power: For our carnivorous compadres, top your pizza with cooked and crumbled sausage, bacon, or thinly sliced prosciutto. Or, channel your inner Mediterranean chef by adding some gyro meat or crumbled feta cheese. Opa!
Make it gluten-free: Don’t let gluten intolerance hold you back from enjoying a slice of heaven! Simply replace the pizza dough with a gluten-free version, available at most grocery stores or online. Just be sure to follow the instructions on the package for rolling out and baking.
Pizza crust alternatives: If traditional dough isn’t your style, try substituting with a cauliflower crust or a pre-made flatbread or naan. Remember, you’re the master of your pizza destiny, so choose your crust wisely!
Sauce it up: If you’re feeling extra adventurous, why not swap the heavy cream for crème fraîche or mascarpone? Or, add a sprinkle of your favorite herbs like basil or oregano to the white sauce for an elevated flavor experience.
So go forth, pizza aficionados, and create your scrumptious masterpiece with these substitution ideas. Whether you’re going gourmet or keeping it simple, the possibilities are endless, and your taste buds will thank you!
Storage & Reheating
Did you miraculously end up with leftover white sauce pizza? Fear not, my fellow pizza lover – storing and reheating your delicious creation is a piece of cake! Or, well, pizza. Anyway, let’s dive into the art of preserving and reviving your pizza masterpiece, so you can enjoy it just as much the next day.
First things first, let’s tackle storage. Wrap each slice individually in plastic wrap or aluminum foil, ensuring every inch is covered to prevent any rogue fridge flavors from infiltrating your tasty treasure. You can also use airtight containers, but make sure the slices are placed in a single layer to keep them from becoming a cheesy mess. Your pizza will stay fresh in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.
Pro tip: If you want to save your pizza for a longer period (hello, late-night snack stash!), you can store it in the freezer for up to 2 months. Just make sure to wrap the slices extra well to avoid freezer burn.
Now, let’s talk reheating. There are a few ways to bring your pizza back to life, and each has a unique twist on the reheating game. Choose your champion:
1. The Oven: Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C). Place the pizza slices on a baking sheet (parchment paper is your friend here) and bake for about 8-10 minutes, or until the cheese is melty and the crust is crispy. This method is particularly effective if you’re reheating multiple slices or want that fresh-out-of-the-oven experience.
2. The Stovetop: Heat a non-stick skillet or frying pan over medium heat. Place your pizza slice(s) in the pan and cover with a lid. Cook for about 5-7 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the crust has a satisfying crunch. This technique is great for achieving a crispy crust while keeping the toppings warm and gooey.
3. The Microwave (with a twist!): Place a slice of pizza on a microwave-safe plate and put a microwave-safe mug or glass filled with water alongside it. Microwave the pizza for about 30 seconds to 1 minute, depending on your microwave’s power. The water will help create steam, preventing the crust from getting rubbery and keeping the cheese and toppings moist. This method is perfect for when you’re in a hurry or only have one slice to reheat.
There you have it – the secrets to storing and reheating your white sauce pizza, ensuring you can savor every last bite. With these tips in hand, you’re ready to tackle any pizza leftovers that come your way. Bon appétit!
Now that you’ve mastered this scrumptious white sauce pizza, let’s dive into some creative and mouthwatering serving ideas that will elevate your pizza night to gourmet status.
- Globetrotter’s Delight: Celebrate global culinary heritage by topping your pizza with ingredients inspired by your favorite international dishes. How about a Mediterranean twist with feta cheese, olives, and sun-dried tomatoes? Or try an Indian-inspired creation with roasted cauliflower, paneer, and a drizzle of tangy yogurt sauce. The possibilities are endless, and your taste buds will thank you.
- Slice of the Seasons: Highlight fresh, in-season produce for a pizza that’s bursting with flavor and visual appeal. In spring, consider vibrant asparagus and peas; in summer, toss on heirloom tomatoes and fresh basil; in fall, experiment with caramelized onions and roasted butternut squash; and in winter, warm up with sautéed mushrooms and wilted kale. Your pizza will be a veritable garden of delights!
- All About That Base: Who says pizza has to be round? For a fun twist, shape your dough into a large heart, star, or even your initials. Whatever the occasion, a unique crust design will add an extra touch of pizzazz to your pizza party.
- Pizza Party Platter: Hosting a get-together? Offer your guests a white sauce pizza bar! Prepare a few large white sauce pizzas with a variety of toppings, then slice them into bite-sized squares or triangles. Arrange the slices on a platter and watch your guests’ eyes light up as they sample the different combinations.
- Pairing Perfection: Complement your pizza with a refreshing side salad, or serve it alongside a steaming bowl of minestrone soup for a cozy, comfort-food meal. And, of course, don’t forget the perfect beverage pairing! A crisp, cold beer or a glass of white wine will enhance the flavors of your white sauce pizza even further.
Armed with these serving ideas, you’re ready to dazzle your family and friends with your culinary prowess. With a dash of creativity and a sprinkle of good-natured humor, your homemade white sauce pizza is sure to become a cherished addition to your recipe repertoire. Bon appétit!
Variations & Customization
It’s time to unleash your inner pizza artist and customize this white sauce pizza recipe to cater to your taste buds and dietary restrictions! With a few simple tweaks, you can easily create a delicious pie that suits vegan, gluten-free, GAPS/AIP, keto, and other popular diets. So, grab your apron and let’s get creative!
Vegan: Eliminate dairy and animal products by substituting vegan-friendly alternatives. Replace the ricotta and Parmesan cheeses with vegan cashew-based cheese and use plant-based milk, such as almond or coconut milk, instead of heavy cream. Opt for vegan mozzarella shreds and load up on veggie toppings like spinach, mushrooms, and tomatoes. Lastly, use a vegan pizza dough, which is typically made without eggs.
Gluten-Free: To make this recipe gluten-free, simply replace the regular pizza dough with a gluten-free pizza dough. Many grocery stores carry pre-made gluten-free dough, or you can make your own using gluten-free flour blends and some xanthan gum to provide structure and elasticity. Voilà! A gluten-free masterpiece is born.
GAPS/AIP: The GAPS (Gut and Psychology Syndrome) and AIP (Autoimmune Protocol) diets focus on healing the gut and reducing inflammation. To cater to these diets, use a grain-free pizza crust made with coconut or almond flour. Swap the dairy-based white sauce for a homemade version using coconut cream, garlic, and herbs. Top with shredded chicken and a variety of colorful veggies for a nutrient-packed pizza that will make your gut say thank you!
Keto: To make a keto-friendly white sauce pizza, start with a low-carb crust, such as one made with almond or coconut flour, or even a cauliflower crust. Keep the creamy white sauce, but consider reducing the amount of heavy cream and increasing the ricotta cheese for a thicker, higher-fat sauce. Top with plenty of mozzarella cheese and keto-approved toppings like cooked chicken, bacon, and olives. Make sure to avoid high-carb veggies like onions and tomatoes.
Other Popular Variations: The beauty of pizza is that you can customize it to your heart’s content. Spice things up with a sprinkle of red pepper flakes or a drizzle of hot sauce. Add some depth of flavor with sun-dried tomatoes, artichoke hearts, or olives. Go gourmet with prosciutto, arugula, and goat cheese. The possibilities are endless!
With these variations and customizations in your culinary arsenal, you can now confidently create a white sauce pizza that caters to your dietary needs and preferences. What are you waiting for? It’s time to preheat that oven and let your pizza prowess shine!
Notes & Tips
- Dough Decisions: Feel free to use store-bought pizza dough or make your own from scratch. If going for the latter, remember that resting the dough overnight in the fridge allows the gluten to relax, making it easier to roll out and resulting in a more tender crust. Plus, it’s always fun to boast about your homemade dough to impress your friends and family!
- Sauce Science: For a lighter option, swap out the heavy cream in the white sauce for whole milk or even plain Greek yogurt. This substitution not only cuts down on the fat content but also adds a tangy twist to the classic white sauce. Just be aware that the consistency may vary, so adjust the amount of milk or yogurt as needed.
- Topping Talk: The world is your oyster when it comes to pizza toppings! Celebrate global culinary heritage by experimenting with unique combinations inspired by various cultures. How about a Mediterranean-inspired pizza with feta cheese, olives, and sundried tomatoes? Or an Asian-inspired pizza with teriyaki chicken, pineapple, and green onions? Don’t be afraid to get creative and let your taste buds explore!
- Baking Brilliance: For the crispiest crust, slide the pizza directly onto the preheated pizza stone in the oven. If you don’t have a pizza stone, an inverted baking sheet works just as well. And if you’re worried about your pizza sticking, a little cornmeal or semolina sprinkled onto the stone or baking sheet before placing the dough ensures easy removal and a delightful crunch.
- Timing Tips: Keep an eye on your pizza while it’s baking, as cooking times can vary depending on your oven and the thickness of the crust. For a thicker crust, you might need to bake it a little longer; for a thinner crust, it could be done in less time. Just remember, practice makes perfect, and your pizza skills will only improve with each delicious creation!
- Slice and Serve: Use a large chef’s knife or a pizza cutter to evenly slice your masterpiece into 8 delectable portions. Pair your pizza with a fresh salad or some garlic bread for a complete meal. And hey, why not toss in a glass of wine or an ice-cold beer to really indulge in the fruits of your labor? Cheers to your homemade white sauce pizza success!
- Overloading the toppings: While it’s tempting to pile on all your favorite toppings, remember that less is more when it comes to pizza. Overloading your pizza with toppings can leave you with a soggy, undercooked crust that struggles to hold up under the weight. Stick to a few well-chosen toppings to let the flavors shine and ensure an evenly cooked pizza.
- Skipping the preheating: Preheating your oven and pizza stone (if using one) before baking is crucial. This helps to achieve a crispy crust and properly melted cheese. Skipping this step could result in a less-than-stellar, unevenly baked pizza. Patience is a virtue when it comes to prepping your oven, so give it time to heat up!
- Using cold dough: If your pizza dough has been refrigerated, make sure to let it come to room temperature before rolling it out. Cold dough can be difficult to work with and may not stretch evenly, resulting in a misshapen pizza with an inconsistent crust. Allow your dough to rest at room temperature for about 30 minutes before getting started to ensure a smooth, even base for your delicious white sauce pizza.
- Forgetting to flour the surface: When rolling out your pizza dough, don’t forget to lightly flour the surface. This helps to prevent the dough from sticking to your work surface and rolling pin, making it easier to shape your pizza. However, be careful not to over-flour, as this can lead to a dry and tough crust.
- Applying sauce and toppings too close to the edge: Leaving a 1-inch border around the edge of your pizza is important for achieving that perfect golden crust. If you spread your white sauce and toppings all the way to the edge, you’ll end up with a soggy border that lacks the crispiness we all crave in a slice of pizza. Show some restraint and keep your sauce and toppings contained within that 1-inch boundary.
- Baking on the wrong surface: Parchment paper is your friend when it comes to baking pizza. Not only does it prevent sticking, but it also allows for easy transfer in and out of the oven. If using a pizza stone, remember to preheat it in the oven and then carefully slide your prepared pizza onto the hot stone for optimal baking results.
- Cutting into the pizza too soon: We know it’s hard to resist the allure of a freshly baked pizza, but give your masterpiece a few minutes to cool before slicing. This allows the cheese to set and prevents your toppings from sliding off when you dig in. Plus, it minimizes the risk of burning your taste buds on molten cheese, so it’s a win-win!
By avoiding these common mistakes, you can ensure your homemade white sauce pizza turns out as delicious and Instagram-worthy as possible. Happy baking!
Health Risks & Benefits
Let’s talk about the flip side of the pizza coin: health! This white sauce pizza recipe is a delightful twist on the traditional tomato-based pizza, but what health risks and benefits does it bring to the table? Fear not, pizza lovers, for we have the scoop!
Firstly, ricotta cheese, one of the main ingredients in our white sauce, is a great source of calcium, which helps maintain strong bones and teeth. Parmesan cheese also adds a dose of calcium, along with protein and a little vitamin A. Cheese, please!
Heavy cream may sound indulgent, but in the grand pizza scheme, it’s just a minor player. A small amount is used to create a creamy consistency but doesn’t completely tip the nutritional scales.
The optional veggie toppings, like spinach, mushrooms, onions, and tomatoes, all bring their own nutritional benefits. Spinach is an excellent source of iron and vitamins A, C, and K, while mushrooms provide essential minerals like selenium, potassium, and copper. Onions and tomatoes both contain antioxidants, which help fight off harmful free radicals and protect our bodies from diseases.
Now, no one’s claiming that pizza is a health food, but this recipe does have a few benefits up its sleeve. The crust, which is mostly made up of carbohydrates, provides a decent energy source for our bodies. However, moderation is key, as consuming too many carbs can lead to weight gain.
Lastly, we can’t ignore the potential health risks. This pizza, like many others, is relatively high in fat and sodium, which could contribute to increased blood pressure and other health issues if consumed in excess. However, when enjoyed as a treat alongside a balanced diet, this homemade white sauce pizza is a delicious option you can feel good about sinking your teeth into! Cheers to pizza nights and the pursuit of a flavorful life!
Recipe History & Context
White sauce pizza, also known as pizza bianca, has a rich and flavorful history that can be traced back to its Italian roots. While the classic margherita pizza garners most of the attention with its tomato, basil, and mozzarella toppings, white sauce pizza has been a beloved alternative for those seeking a unique and creamy twist on the traditional pie.
The origins of white sauce pizza can be traced back to ancient Rome, where pizza-like flatbreads were adorned with a variety of toppings, including olive oil and cheese. However, it wasn’t until the Middle Ages that the concept of a white sauce, made with ricotta cheese, began to take shape in Italian cuisine. This delicious concoction would later serve as the base for our modern-day white sauce pizza.
The humble ricotta cheese used in this recipe is a testament to the ingenuity of Italian cooks who found a way to use every part of the dairy process. Made from the whey leftover after making other cheeses like mozzarella and provolone, ricotta is a versatile and nutritious ingredient that adds a creamy richness to the white sauce.
Parmesan cheese, another key component of the white sauce, has a storied history of its own. Hailing from the Parma region in Italy, this hard, granular cheese has been produced since the 13th century and has become a staple in Italian cuisine. Its distinct, slightly nutty flavor adds depth to the white sauce, making it a perfect complement to the other ingredients.
The beauty of white sauce pizza lies in its simplicity and versatility. The creamy, cheesy base serves as a blank canvas for an array of toppings, allowing for endless customization. From classic spinach and mushroom combinations to more adventurous options like cooked chicken and tomatoes, white sauce pizza has something to offer every palate.
So, the next time you’re craving a delectable slice of cheesy goodness, why not give this white sauce pizza a try? Embrace the culinary heritage of Italy and impress your friends and family with your homemade pizza prowess. Buon appetito!
Absolutely! Using store-bought pizza dough is a great time-saver and perfect for beginners or those in a hurry. Just make sure you follow the package instructions for thawing and rolling out the dough before proceeding with the recipe.
No problem! You can use a large oven-safe skillet or even an inverted cookie sheet as a makeshift pizza stone. Just make sure to preheat it in the oven as you would with a pizza stone to ensure a crispy crust.
Yes, you can experiment with other types of cheese in the white sauce. Soft, creamy cheeses like mascarpone or even cream cheese can be used as a substitute for ricotta. You can also try adding a bit of crumbled blue cheese or feta for a unique twist on the classic white sauce.
Making pizza dough from scratch is easier than you might think! All you need is some flour, water, yeast, salt, and a bit of sugar or honey. Combine the ingredients, knead the dough, and let it rise for a couple of hours, and you’ll have a delicious homemade pizza dough ready for your white sauce pizza recipe.
You sure can! Simply prepare the pizza as instructed up to step 8, then wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and foil before placing it in the freezer. When you’re ready to enjoy your white sauce pizza, preheat the oven, unwrap the pizza, and bake it directly from frozen until the crust is golden brown and the cheese is melted and bubbly.
- Rolling Pin
- Large baking sheet or pizza stone
- Parchment paper
- Mixing Bowl
- Spoon or spatula
- 1 lb pizza dough
- 1 cup ricotta cheese
- ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- ½ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
- Optional toppings: spinach mushrooms, onions, tomatoes, cooked chicken, etc.
- Preheat oven to 475°F (245°C). Preheat pizza stone if using.
- Mix ricotta, Parmesan, heavy cream, salt, black pepper, and garlic powder in a bowl.
- Roll out pizza dough into a 12-inch circle on a floured surface.
- Transfer dough to parchment-lined baking sheet or preheated pizza stone.
- Brush dough with olive oil, leaving a 1-inch border.
- Spread white sauce evenly over dough, leaving a 1-inch border.
- Sprinkle mozzarella cheese evenly over white sauce.
- Add desired toppings evenly over cheese.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes, until crust is golden brown and cheese is bubbly.
- Let pizza cool for a few minutes before slicing and serving.