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A few years ago, we started enjoying homemade pizza. At first, I was a little intimidated to make a pizza, crust and all, from scratch. But our budget was taking a beating on things like dine out pizza.
Once I started making it, I became addicted to it. The pizza was very good, surprisingly easy and amazingly inexpensive to make. When we began our quest to change our diet to incorporate whole, nutrient dense foods we knew we wanted to keep eating our beloved pizza.
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I was pleased to find out by changing out some of our toppings and improving the crust we could have a delicious pizza that I felt good about us eating. I will tell you, since our entire process has been done in small steps the pizza was no different.
At first, I stuck with the same crust that my family was used to (yeast and baking powder, white flour). My first change was going half and half on white flour and whole wheat flour. I did that a couple of times.
Then went 100% whole wheat. Next was finding a new crust that incorporated soaking the flour to eliminate phytic acid (learn more about the ‘why’ of that here). I hit pay dirt when I stumbled upon a recipe online for sourdough pizza crust . We tried the recipe and loved it.
It soon became ‘our’ pizza crust. I’ve linked to it many times in my menu plans and my sourdough posts. Imagine my surprise one day when I went to make a link and the website no longer existed. 🙁
I had written the recipe down to have for ease of preparation. Sadly, with my short hand way of writing I had only the ingredients listed. The rest was done by memory. This is a reworked version of the original. We still love it!
Sourdough Pizza Crust
(originally from Mommy’s Soapbox)
Makes two pizza crusts- plan ahead, needs to soak
Combine starter with flour. Cover and let rest for 7-24 hours.
About 3 hours before you wish to make your pizza, give it a stir and add the salt and olive oil. Use your freshly washed hands to mix it. Then knead for 5-10 minutes until the dough is smooth and elastic. Cover and let rise. Divide the dough into two balls and let rest for 15 minutes. Press into pans (I usually use a combination of pressing and my rolling pin). Add your favorite toppings and bake in pre-heated oven for 10-15 minutes until toppings are bubbly and crust is golden.
I took a couple of pictures so you can see what the dough looks like in various stages.
This is just the flour and starter together. It starts off fairly crumbly but as it sets it becomes less crumbly. Please note: the longer that you let this soak the more sourdough flavor it will have. We like it best when I start it in the morning for enjoying in the evening. The flavor has just the right amount of ‘sour’.
When you first add the salt and oil in the texture will change. It may be slightly gummy. It will improve as you knead it.
It does work best to use a combination of pushing the dough in the pan and the rolling pin. The pizza’s that I make at my house are square. We don’t have a round pizza pan. Lulu often says that she wishes our pizza’s weren’t square. Maybe someday I’ll buy a couple of round pans.
For toppings, we tend to be pretty boring. I don’t like buying ‘special’ ingredients so often times the toppings are things that we keep on hand.
I estimate that two pizzas with basic toppings (homemade pizza sauce, grass fed ground beef, sliced mushrooms, onions, green peppers, and generous amount of cheese) runs us around $5. To help cut costs, I decrease the amount of cheese and meat and increase the ‘cheaper’ veggies.
What are your favorite frugal pizza toppings?
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