Making meals at home is a great way to save money. You can even teach your kids a new dish everyday and bond with them along the way. And while some kids can be picky eaters, one of the most modifiable foods out there that you can make at home is pizza! Here are 7 tips you can use to make some delicious pizza that everyone in the family will love.
1. Pay attention to your dough
Whether you're making pizza dough from scratch or using the store-bought ones, it's important to pay attention to quality. Use only trusty brands or ingredients so you don't affect the taste and texture of your pizza dough – you wouldn't want it tasting like soap or too soft that it's almost like a mushy cheese pull. Mind its thinness or thickness too, which is also according to your preference.
It's also important to know that skill mastery is needed when your dough is homemade, and it's alright if you don't trust yourself enough to make your own dough. Having reserve store-bought dough just in case your homemade one doesn't rise properly or feels weird on the tongue is always a good idea.
2. Pick your favorite tomato-based sauce
Some people use pure tomato sauce while others buy pizza sauce mixed with spices and seasonings according to their liking. However you like your sauce, make sure that you never double dip on its container as tomatoes go bad pretty easily – the sauce coming into contact with somebody's saliva will spoil it and an entire batch of delicious pizza sauce will just go to waste.
The same principle applies here as picking ingredients or a brand for your dough — the kind of sauce you choose can make or break your pizza. Test out your sauce by getting the right mixture of ingredients first if you're doing it from scratch; make sure to mind your ratios and portions.
Meanwhile, if you don't want to do it on your own, then you can just get the smallest packs of pizza sauces from your local grocery store and test them out in one session. If there are any weird lingering aftertastes, then do away with sauces like that. Trial and error is necessary to get the taste you want for your pizza.
3. Choose toppings that everyone will like – including you
If your kids aren't too fond of vegetables like onions, bell peppers, black olives, tomato, or arugula, then replace it with more neutral-tasting alternatives like thinly-sliced button mushrooms or even corn kernels. Some guaranteed crowd favorites are bacon, ham, and chicken pieces, so make sure to incorporate those into your pizza.
If you'd like your kids to be fed some vegetables, then blend them into the pizza sauce and hide it with healthy and delicious flavorings so they don't notice it. Or better yet, introduce vegetables to them one by one.
One way you can do this is to make a Margherita pizza with only basil and mozzarella the first time, then next time you can put seedless tomato slices on it. You can even introduce fruit the third time – especially if you are on the affirmative side in the pineapples on pizza debate.
4. Bake it – or cook it on a pan!
Some are lucky to have a brick oven in their childhood homes, but for most of us, we'll have to make do with our regular ovens. If you don't have one, you can always make some pan pizza that's just as delicious as an oven-baked one. Make sure to follow the instructions on your recipe sheet so you don't underbake or overbake.
Meanwhile, other ways to cook your pizza include grilling it especially if you want a crispy, brown crust. You can also use your air fryer and follow this guide so you can get a tasty and flavorful pizza in just a fraction of the time typically needed for pizza-making.
5. Cut it in different ways
Pizzas like the New York-style ones are usually shaped into a circle and cut in a way that forms triangle slices. But it's not always the case – Detroit-style pizzas like the ones served in this Makati pizza place are rectangular in shape, and the crust is thicker than that of regular pizza.
In honor of Valentine's season, you can even make your dough heart-shaped like a famous pizza chain does every February. You may also cut it into smaller circles or squares just to make things even more fun, but if you don't want any leftover cuts, then you can just stick to the classic cut.
6. Drizzle some herbs and oils on it
Whether it's chimichurri, tzatziki, sriracha, or vinaigrette, the mixture of flavors will always come out right as long as your ingredients have chemistry with each other. Don't put together flavors that you aren't sure will work. Especially if you tired of your plain old hot sauce, explore other types of sauces and dips you can drizzle on your pizza by all means.
You don't even have to exhaust your creative bones – you can use a drizzle bottle to top your pizza with even more of the tomato sauce that you used as a base. If you think you got your sauce right and it tastes that good, then your pizza can use a little more of it for you and your family to indulge in!
7. Top it with extra cheese!
What's pizza without cheese, right? And there's no such thing as too much cheese on a pizza, just like there's never too much fudge on a sundae. Your kids will even thank you for it! Aside from mozzarella that gives you satisfying cheese pulls, you'll need more of that cheese flavor, which you'll get from cheeses such as cheddar, gorgonzola, or Pecorino Romano.
How Do You Like Your Pizza?
Whatever way you make your pizza, source your ingredients from the best markets or groceries to ensure the taste is right, and study your preparation techniques so it comes out free of any "defects" so to speak.
How do you like your pizza – thick or thin crust? Meat-based or vegan? Loaded with toppings or just a plain cheese pizza? Make sure that you consult your loved ones on how they like theirs so there's a palate consensus in the kitchen, and everyone enjoys the pizza you'll be making for them.