Turning Over a New Leaf
By leaf I mean spinach and by turning over I mean sautéing it and adding it to my pizza. When I eat pizza it has to be three things: flavourful, high fibre and filling. The perks of making your own rendition of pizza means that you get to control the ingredients. I don’t have a lot of time to spend in the kitchen so I like to take a few short cuts. For example, I buy high fibre pitas and use it as my ‘pizza shell.’ Each pita should contain at least 3-4g of fibre per serving. I usually have some homemade sauce refrigerated, so I can use it as the base for my pizza. One of my favourites is pesto sauce. I usually whip up a batch when I know I have basil leaves that are about to wilt and/or I won’t be using them in any upcoming meals. For convenience (i.e. part of meal prepping), I almost always have some vegetables cut up in the fridge and ready to cook as needed.
So, how do I meet my pizza requirements? Flavour is met by the combination of ingredients and textures, fibre is met by the fresh vegetables and whole grain/wheat pita shell and satiety is met by the use of olive oil, crushed nuts, and protein from low fat and portion controlled cheese. I’ve made this meatless, but you could easily add a cut-up and cooked chicken breast. One serving of my sundried tomato and pesto pizza keeps me full for at least three hours – that’s a win in my books considering I’m always hungry! Give it a try and let me know what you think.
Sundried Tomato and Pesto Pizza
1c basil leaves
1 garlic clove
¼ c parmesan cheese, grated (reduced fat if available)
2 tbsp olive oil
Sea salt and black pepper to taste
3 whole wheat/grain pita pockets
1 tsp olive oil
1/4c white onion, diced
4 white mushrooms, sliced
2c baby spinach, fresh
6 tbsp reduced fat ricotta cheese
Black pepper (to taste)
4 pieces sundried tomatoes, cut into pieces
3 tsp almonds, ground
Preheat oven to 300F. Line tray with parchment paper and place pitas on tray. Set aside.
In a food processor, blend all of the pesto sauce ingredients. Once smooth, set aside.
Heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and sauté for approximately 5 minutes. Add mushrooms and continue to stir for another 5-7 minutes (i.e. until mushrooms have cooked through and onions are golden-brown). Add spinach and stir for approximately 1-2 minutes (i.e. until spinach is just wilted). Transfer into a bowl.
Spread approximately 1.5-2tsp of pesto sauce on each pita and refrigerate any remaining sauce. Add black pepper to ricotta cheese. Spread 2 tbsp of ricotta cheese on each pita and then evenly top with spinach mixture and sundried tomatoes.
Once assembled, bake for approximately 15minutes. Add almonds to each pizza and continue to bake for an additional 2 minutes. Once baked, serve immediately and enjoy.
Nutritional Information (per pita pizza):
Calories: 390kcal Protein: 17g Fat: 16g (4g saturated) Carbohydrates: 45g Fibre: 6g