During the fall, I'm all about pumpkin, naturally. So it makes sense to make a creamy pumpkin sauce to top my homemade pizza dough. The roasted vegetables and gooey melted cheese are the perfect finishing touches on this family favorite meal.
How to Make Cajun Pumpkin Pizza
There are three parts to this recipe: the fluffy homemade pizza crust, the cajun pumpkin sauce and the roasted vegetable toppings. Start by making the crust, then roast the veggies and make the simple sauce. Finally, assemble your beautiful pie and dig in!
Homemade Pizza Crust
You can certainly use a store-bought crust for this pizza recipe. But if you'd like to make your own, you'll need these simple ingredients:
All-purpose flour. I use organic flour from Bob's Red Mill.
Warm water. This helps activate the yeast.
Rapid rise yeast. 1 packet is about 1 ½ teaspoons of yeast.
Olive oil. This softens and flavors the pizza dough.
Almond milk. Another dairy-free milk will also work.
Roasted Vegetable Toppings
I like to add nutrients, color and flavor to this pizza with plenty of healthy vegetables:
Spinach. You can use kale or another leafy green if you prefer.
Grape tomatoes. I like roasting the tomatoes to concentrate their flavor.
Mozzarella and parmesan cheese. These two melt wonderfully and have a salty, savory flavor.
In the bowl of an electric mixer (with a dough hook attachment), mix together the warm water, honey, olive oil, and yeast (you might need to use a whisk to ensure that everything combines together well). Let is sit for at least 5 minutes, until yeast begins to activate and foam.
Slowly add the flour, salt, and milk (on low speed!), until fully incorporated and a soft dough is formed. NOTE: if dough is too sticky, add ½ cup of additional flour at a time)
Now, increase the speed to medium-high and knead the dough for about 5 minutes in the mixer.
Once dough is formed, add it to a large greased bowl (with olive oil), roll it around, and cover it until it rises a bit, about 15 minutes.
TO ROAST THE TOMATOES:
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Add the halved grape tomatoes in a bowl with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and cajun seasonings, mixing everything together until well coated. Place unto the prepared baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes or until tomatoes are wilted, and charred.
TO MAKE PUMPKIN SAUCE:
In a bowl, mix all ingredients together until well combined.
After the rise, add the dough onto a floured surface and slightly roll out the dough until it’s flat enough to form a flat circle the rest of the way with your hands, about 11 inches in diameter.
Lightly grease your pizza pan with extra virgin olive oil and place dough on one end of pan, evenly pressing it and flattening it out to fit the entire pan. Gently use your finger to stretch dough until pan is fully covered and gently pinch the edges of the dough together to form the crust.
Brush a generous amount of the pumpkin sauce over the top of the crust until evenly coated.
Generously sprinkle on the cheeses until crust is fully covered in the middle, leaving a bit of crust for the edges. Top with spinach followed by roasted tomatoes.
Lightly brush the tops of the edge of the crust with 1 tablespoon of olive oil to ensure that it becomes a nice golden brown.
Place top rack into the middle of oven. Gently transfer the pizza pie to the hot oven and bake for 15-20 minutes or so, until the cheese has melted (and becomes bubbly) and the crust is crispy and golden brown.
Once done, allow pizza to rest/cool for a few minutes (about 2-3 minutes) so that the cheese sets before cutting into generous slices, using a pizza cutter.
Tips & Tricks
PIZZA CRUST: For a crispy pizza (especially on the bottom), I suggest using a pizza pan with holes to allow the crust to bake through nicely. I used the AirBake Pizza Pan, which can be found at Target!
STORAGE: Leftover pizza is best kept tightly wrapped in foil paper, refrigerated for 3-4 days for optimal freshness.