Thursday, November 15, 2012

Healthier pizza options

Recently we posted on the Smart Sassy Sisters facebook page asking if there were any topics that you all might be interested in reading about. One of our faithful readers, Lori, who Lexy and I have known since the early 1990's  and who has her own blog, posted the following question: what are some healthy ordering suggestions or great tasting alternatives when pizza is your only option? I thought this was a fantastic question, because pizza is so often the go to choice for social gatherings or on those busy nights where you just don't feel like cooking.  The good news is that living a healthy lifestyle does not doom you to a lifetime of munching on carrots while your friends or family are enjoying pizza- There are a number of ways that pizza can be made healthier!  

1.  Crust:  when ordering pizza, make sure to check out the different crust options.  A lot of pizza chains have started offering healthier crust options such as a wheat or multi-grain. Even if your favorite local pizza eatery does not offer a special healthy crust, by choosing thin crust pizza instead of thick or pan crust pizza you be will be saving a ton of calories and fat. My favorite crust is Larosa's honey wheat pizza crust. I typically order the skinny wheat pizza, with tomato, onion and spinach. One piece of that has 100 calories and 3 grams of fat.  

2. Meat: I recommend staying away from pepperoni or sausage.  Not only are those more fattening options, those are also the least likely to be "clean".  If I want to add some extra protein on my pizza, I will add grilled chicken.  

3. Veggies: most people groan when I suggest veggies on pizza, but trust me, adding veggies on pizza is not only delicious, but it adds substance and makes it much more filling. Plus, you will be adding nutrients that your body craves! Next time you order pizza, try adding some  spinach, tomatoes, peppers, or other veggies! 

4. Make your own: before starting this health and weight loss journey I would never have considered making my own pizza! However I was pleasantly surprised at how easy it can be! First of all you do not need to spend  hours making your own homemade crust: you can buy organic pre-made whole wheat pizza crust, or use Ezekiel English muffins, pita bread, etc... Simply add your tomato sauce and toppings of choice and bake!  Here is the link to one of my favorite homemade pizza recipes: Whole Grain Mini Pizzas.  The sauce is made with spinach or kale, and tastes exactly like pesto! I will make a bunch of these ahead of time and freeze them, so anytime I need a quick meal I just reheat one in the oven or microwave. Also, if you want the pizza flavor but want a more filling alternative, try this awesome quinoa pizza bake!

5. Fill up first: there may be times when you have no control over what type of pizza is ordered, but do not fear, being a healthy eater does not mean you have to be a party pooper. The main thing the both Lexy and I have found is eating regular pizza is just not as filling as eating pizza with real ingredients and so it is really tempting to eat more than 2 pieces.  Knowing this, I will try to drink a large glass of water and eat a salad or fruit and veggies before eating pizza.  Another option is to treat the pizza as a snack and only eat one piece and then eat a real meal later. 

Thanks Lori for your awesome question! Do any of you have any favorite healthy pizza suggestions or recipes? 


  1. Hey Sisters!
    Thank you SO much for this post. I read it right away last week and came back to read it again to remind myself of my other options. My daughter loves the English Muffin pizzas and I just never thought to use them as an alternative to traditional pizza. Hooray! Thanks again for your advice and great ideas. You Gals Rock!!

  2. Thanks Lori! You rock for your awesome question and for being such a loyal reader!!!!