I was first introduced to “fancy” pizzas when I started working full-time right out of college. There happened to be a fantastic pizza place down the road with what seemed like an endless display of CRAZY delicious pizzas — everything from buffalo chicken ranch pizza to penne a la vodka pizza to Caesar salad pizza — how could I ever choose?! I was in pizza heaven. I could never imagine going back to plain old cheese pizza and luckily, when the hubby and I first started dating, there was another fancy pizza place a block from his apartment! Once we moved in together, we started making pizza at home as a quick (and healthier) solution to ordering out. When the hubby began cutting back on dairy in his diet, I came up with some pizza ideas that didn’t revolve around cheese. This BBQ chicken pizza is the recipe that I keep going back to — it’s quick, easy, and delicious!
The toppings on this pizza really impart so much flavor that you’ll never miss the cheese if you’re dairy-free or looking to cut more calories. Recently, I’ve been making the recipe half-and-half…that’s half with cheese and half without (my way of ensuring that I get my cheesy leftovers!). The tang of the BBQ sauce, the sweetness and bite of the red onion, and the heartiness of the chicken make for a satisfying weeknight meal. Just serve with a big side salad and you’re good to go.
Recipe prep tip: I like to cook the chicken over the weekend, mix it with BBQ sauce and keep it in the fridge so all I need to do is re-heat it while I’m assembling the pizza. 10 minutes in the oven and dinner is ready!
BBQ Chicken Pizza
Yield: 4-6 servings | Serving Size = about 1/4 of recipe
Prep time: 20 minutes | Cook time: 10 mins | Total time: 30 minutes
Store-bought pizza dough (I used Boboli thin crust)
1/3 to 1/2 cup BBQ sauce (depending on size of pizza crust), plus 3 Tbsp, divided
1 boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
1/2 red onion, sliced into thin strips
1/3 cup part-skim shredded mozzarella
1/4 cup reduced-fat shredded Monterey or Pepper Jack cheese*
*Feel free to use any combination of cheeses. I like mozzarella because it melts well and Jack for the spicy kick.
** For dairy-free diets, omit the cheese
1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees
2. Spray a pan with non-stick cooking spray. Cut chicken into bite-sized pieces and season with salt and pepper. Cook on medium heat for 5-7 minutes, turning chicken until completely cooked through.
3. Transfer chicken pieces to a medium prep bowl and mix with 1-2 Tbsp BBQ sauce. Toss to coat.
4. Spread 1/2 cup BBQ sauce over pizza dough with a large spoon, leaving a 1-inch border around the edges.
5. Top with shredded cheese, chicken pieces, and red onion.
6. Drizzle with remaining BBQ sauce, if desired.
7. Place pizza directly on the middle oven rack (you can place a cookie sheet on the lower rack to catch any toppings) and bake for 8-10 minutes until cheese is melted and edges are browned.
8. Using an oven mitt, remove pizza from oven by sliding it onto a large cutting board. Cut into slices using a pizza cutter.
Recipe adapted from: Just A Taste
Photography: Lighten Up Recipes