A reheated slice of pizzeria pizza can be the ultimate comfort food in the morning. But no matter how we try to justify it — it has protein! and tomatoes! — it’s not really the most nutritious way to start your day.
Luckily, you can make a healthier version of this comfort-food craving. Introducing the breakfast pizza — a homemade version of the Italian staple (minus the greasy cardboard box) that’ll satisfy your pizza cravings in a more nourishing way.
What Is Breakfast Pizza?
A healthy breakfast pizza combines the best of both worlds — pizza and breakfast. While you’ll find plenty of recipes out there for thick-crusted breakfast pizzas smothered in cheese and topped with chunks of sausage and pepperoni, you can make a more energizing, nutritious version by choosing your ingredients wisely.
Start with a homemade crust or a store-bought whole-grain crust, pita, or wrap. Eggs are typically a must-have topping — this is a breakfast pizza, after all — but beyond that, you can get creative. Stick with the bacon theme and add bacon; make a veggie-heavy breakfast pizza with broccoli, fresh tomatoes, and mushrooms; or create a sweet breakfast pizza with fruit, yogurt, and granola.
Breakfast pizzas are an excellent meal prep option, since you can whip one up on Sunday, pop it in the fridge or freezer, and then reheat a slice or two each morning.
Is Breakfast Pizza Healthy?
It all comes down to the ingredients. If you choose whole-grain and nutritious toppings, breakfast pizza can actually be a pretty healthy breakfast option, according to Mascha Davis, MPH, RD, founder of Nomadista Nutrition.
Davis suggests adding a healthy protein to your breakfast pizza — such as over-easy eggs — along with plenty of vegetables and greens like arugula, baby spinach, or sprouts. And avocado is a great source of healthy fats, she adds.
And while cheese can add calories and saturated fat, it also provides protein and calcium — and makes your pizza taste more like a pizza — so don’t be afraid to use it in moderation. Davis recommends goat cheese as a naturally lower-fat option, or you could make your own homemade ricotta.
5 Tips for Making a Healthier Breakfast Pizza
1. Get creative with your crust.
Think beyond your usual pizza crust and dive into the world of crust alternatives, including ones made from cauliflower, sweet potatoes, and other vegetables. Or if you go the sweet route, try a protein pancake as your base.
2. Pile on the veggies.
Breakfast pizzas are an excellent opportunity to start your day off right with a nice variety of veggies. Use any seasonal produce you have on hand, and add a few handfuls of greens or herbs.
3. Don’t overlook fruit.
Pineapple on pizza can be polarizing, but if you love Hawaiian pizza, give other fruit toppings a try, too! Replace the cheese layer with yogurt, and use drizzled peanut butter, honey, maple syrup, or jam as the sauce. Top with berries, banana slices, or kiwi.
4. Pack on the protein.
Bump up the protein content of your pizza by adding eggs, grilled or pulled chicken, turkey or chicken sausage, or black beans.
5. Freeze some slices for busy mornings.
To freeze your healthy breakfast pizza, stack your slices with a layer of aluminum foil or parchment paper in between to prevent them from sticking, and then wrap your pizza pile in plastic wrap. To reheat, use a toaster oven or skillet to keep the crust nice and crispy. (You can also reheat breakfast pizza in the microwave, but we can’t promise it won’t turn into a soggy mess.)
Ready to give breakfast pizza a try? Try our healthy recipe below.
Savory Breakfast Pizza
- Parchment paper
- Nonstick cooking spray
- 2 cups riced cauliflower
- ½ cup cooked steel-cut oatmeal
- ½ cup egg whites
- ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 Tbsp. dried parsley flakes
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- ¾ cup reduced-fat (2%) cottage cheese
- 1 cup arugula
- ½ cup sliced mushrooms
- ½ cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- 2 large hard-boiled eggs, sliced
Preheat oven to 400° F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Coat with cooking spray. Set aside.
Place riced cauliflower in a large microwave-safe bowl; cook in the microwave oven for 5 minutes, remove and stir, then cook again for another 5 minutes.
Carefully place cooled cauliflower on cheesecloth and wring out all extra liquid into another bowl. Discard liquid.
Combine cauliflower, oatmeal, egg whites, Parmesan cheese, parsley, and garlic powder in a large bowl; mix well until thoroughly combined.
Form cauliflower mixture into 2 balls, 1 cup each, and place on prepared pan. Flatten gently with hands to form a circular crust. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until crust is firm and golden.
When crusts are done, divide cottage cheese equally between crusts. Then distribute arugula, mushrooms, and tomatoes evenly on top between two pizza crusts.
Raise oven to 500° F, or turn on the top broiler to high. Bake for an additional 5 minutes, or until mushrooms and tomatoes are blistered.
Divide sliced eggs evenly between pizzas. Serve immediately.
The Nutrition Facts box below provides estimated nutritional information for this recipe.
1 Other Carbohydrate