Tomato and Cheese Pizza Recipe

Store-bought varieties can't compare to this simple variation of tomato and cheese pizza on a whole grain crust.

| June/July 2006

slice of tomato and cheese pizza

The basic tomato and cheese pizza is a culinary classic.

Illustration by Bernard Laws

Who doesn’t love pizza? Excluding special cases — people who have specific food allergies or who have never tried it — probably no one. For this basic recipe, I’ve included a cost comparison if you buy conventional versus organic ingredients. I know food budgets are often tight, but if you can I urge you to go organic.

Tomato and Cheese Pizza

1 cup warm water
1 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp yeast
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 cups whole-wheat flour
1 1/2 cups all-purpose wheat flour
1 small can tomato paste
2 fresh tomatoes, chopped
3 cloves garlic, diced
1 cup mozzarella cheese, grated

Total cost per pizza: $4.50 conventional; $6.85 organic
Costs are from upstate New York, summer 2003.

Mix water, sugar, yeast, salt, oil and a spoonful of the all-purpose wheat flour in a large bowl and let sit for 10 minutes. When bubbles appear, begin adding the rest of the flour. When the dough becomes stiff, turn it out onto a floured surface. Knead until shiny, smooth and no longer sticky. Place it back in the bowl. Cover and let rise until it doubles in bulk — about 1 hour. Meanwhile, grease a cookie sheet and preheat oven to 475 degrees.

Punch dough down. (If children are around, let them do this part.) Roll it out and stretch it to fit the cookie sheet. (Freeze any extra dough in a plastic bag.) Smear with tomato paste. Layer on tomatoes. Sprinkle with garlic and cheese. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until cheese bubbles and begins to brown.

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