red pepper tomato pizza
Make this pizza at home and impress the heck out of your friends. The pizza dough is no-fuss and you can even make it ahead of time if you’re feeling ambitious.
The toppings for this pizza are chunky bright red veggies, with some caramelized onions for added flavour. The smell of frying onions is probably one of the most tantalizing smells ever, and gives the pizza a richer taste compared to putting them on raw.
This pizza is loaded with tomatoes, and with good reason: tomatoes contain high concentrations of the carotenoid lycopene. Carotenoids are pigment molecules contained in vegetables that give them bright colours such as red, orange, and yellow.
These carotenoids are powerful antioxidants, explaining why we are told to eat our carrots when we’re growing up. Carotenoids fight cancer, inflammation, and even cardiovascular disease; so enjoy your tomatoes and any other brightly coloured veggies!
The hardest part about making this recipe is waiting for the pizza dough to rise, when all I want is to be chowing down on delicious pizza. Be strong, pizza is worth the wait.
Yields: 4 Individual Pizzas (8-10” diameter)
- 4 cups whole wheat flour or all-purpose, or a mix of the two, plus extra for rolling
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 3/4 cups warm water (not too hot)
- 2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast (one 1/4-oz. envelope of yeast)
- 1/2 tsp sugar
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 1/4 tsp red chili flakes
- 1 10 oz. can pizza/tomato sauce
- 2 large tomatoes, finely chopped
- 1 large red bell pepper, finely chopped
- 1/4 block of daiya jalapeño havarti dairy-free cheese
1. Whisk the flour and salt together in a large bowl. In a small glass, mix together the warm water, yeast, and sugar. You should see a thin layer of foam or bubbles on top of the liquid; if nothing happens check that the yeast has not expired.
2. Pour the liquid into the flour and stir together until a loose dough forms. If dry flour patches still remain, add some extra water 1 tbsp at a time. The amount of water will depend on how moist the flour was, so it varies from day-to-day.
3. Knead the dough until it is a smooth ball. Brush 1 tbsp of olive oil over the top of the dough ball, cover with a towel and set aside for 1 1/2 hours to let it double in size.
4. After letting the dough sit, knead it a few more times into a smooth ball. Divide the dough into 4 smaller balls of equal size.
5. Before rolling the dough out, spread a thin layer of flour on the counter and on your rolling pin. Roll the dough into a circle about 1/4 inch thick. *
*You can make the crust any thickness you desire, simply adjust the baking time accordingly.
1. Preheat oven to 475°F and line some pizza pans or baking sheets with parchment paper. Heat 1 tsp olive oil in a small pan, add onions and red chili flakes and cook for 6-8 minutes until onion starts to caramelize.
2. Spread out the tomato sauce onto the rolled out pizza dough; I like to use the back of a spoon to get an even layer. Leave about 1/2 inch around the edges sauce-free for the crust.
3. Arrange the rest of the toppings: tomato chunks, onion, red pepper. Shred some daiya dairy-free cheese on top to bring it all together.
4. Bake 12-15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.
After rising, pizza dough balls can be stored in the fridge in a zip-loc for up to one week. Let the dough come back to room temperature before rolling out.
Leftover pizza can be kept in the fridge for 2-3 days, reheat on a pan in the oven or eat cold. (best thing ever!)
Pizza dough recipe adapted from Thug Kichen Party Grub, one of my favourite vegan cookbooks!
Canene-Adams K, Campbell JK, Zaripheh S, et al: The tomato as a functional food. J Nutr 2005;135:1226-1230. Retrieved from: jn.nutrition.org
Furhman, J. (2016) You say tomato—We say lycopene, a protective carotenoid. Retrieved from: www.drfuhrman.com
Krinsky NI, Johnson EJ: Carotenoid actions and their relation to health and disease. Mol Aspects Med 2005;26:459-516. Retrieved from: www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov
Szalay, J. (2016) What are carotenoids? Livescience. Retrieved from: www.livescience.com