As a pizza lover, I can’t think of a better Valentine’s dinner than deLITEful Deep Dish Pizza! This recipe slashes calories while still giving you all the cheesy goodness you’d expect from Chicago style pizza. I’ve made a lot of changes to the original Healthy Deep Dish Pizza recipe to make it faster and cheesier!
The Lou Malnati’s giveaway inspired me to get back to deep dish pizza recipes. (Lou’s sent me this deep dish pizza pan and spatula to make even better pizza!)
Some simple ways to lighten-up deep dish pizza are with reduced-fat cheese and chicken sausage. I LOVED this roasted garlic sausage from Trader Joe’s. Then load your pie with veggies of your choice! I sautéed onions, green peppers and kale with roasted garlic.
The last little trick to cut calories without your taste buds noticing is to make a thinner crust. Start with 16-oz of prepared whole wheat pizza crust and press into your pizza pan or cake pan. It takes a little while, but keep stretching the dough, pulling the extra over the top of the pan. Discard the extra dough or save it for a mini pizza, bread sticks, etc. I actually had enough leftover to make Charlotte her own little pizza
deLITEful Deep Dish
- 1 9-in cake pan, spring board pan or deep dish pizza pan
- 1 head of garlic
- 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 head of cauliflower
- 1 cup reduced-fat mozzarella cheese
- 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 cups torn kale leaves
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 1 cup chopped green pepper
- 1 fully cooked chicken sausage link, thinly sliced
- 1 tbsp. flour of choice (I used whole wheat flour)
- 1 cup pizza sauce plus extra for serving
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Peel away the outer layers of the garlic bulb, leaving the skins of the individual cloves intact. Cut 1/2 inch of the top of cloves, exposing the individual cloves of garlic. Place the garlic in a baking pan and drizzle 1 tsp of olive oil over the head. Cover with aluminum foil and bake at 400 degrees F for 30-35 minutes, or until the cloves feel soft.
- While the garlic cooks, puree the fresh cauliflower in a food processor and place in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high until cauliflower is soft, about 5 minutes.
- Once the garlic is cool enough to handle, squeeze the bulbs into the food processor and puree until roughly chopped. Mix pureed garlic and mozzarella cheese into the cooked cauliflower and set aside until ready to use.
- Heat 1 tsp of olive oil in a large skillet and add kale, onion and green pepper. Sautee until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the sliced chicken sausage and stir until heated through.
- Spray your pizza pan with olive oil and lightly flour the surface to prevent sticking. Press the dough into the pan and up the sides, discarding any extra.
- Spread half of the cauliflower-cheese mixture over the dough, then layer the cooked vegetables, followed by the other half of the cauliflower-cheese. Finally, pour 1 cup of pizza sauce (I used Trader Joe’s) over the top. If using a cake pan, it may be difficult to fit all the ingredients. It’s up to you, but I would use fewer vegetables to keep all the cheese, meat and sauce…
- Loosely cover the pan with foil and bake at 450 degrees F for 45 minutes. I like serving the pizza with extra sauce on the side, as some of it gets absorbed into the cheese. Enjoy!