the variations are limited only by your choice of
as well as your cooking apparatus.
Pizza Dough and Crust
One of the most important parts of your homemade
is the dough or crust.
If you like the taste of
own pizza dough best -– and if you have the yeast, the ingredients and
the kitchen materials to allow you to handle raw dough, dough risings,
crust formation, and baking –- you can make your own pizza crust. In
will provide our favorite pizza dough recipe below.
If dealing with pizza
too messy or involved for you, you can use a pre-made pizza crust of
some kind. Some stores sell prepared crusts such as Boboli's or Mama
Perhaps your home support
can make a crust for you to use on the road. Just Google "Boboli pizza
crust clone recipe."
You can also use English
muffins or bagels as the base for your homemade pizza. This option is
fast and allows you to make as many or as few as you want.
Our Favorite Pizza Dough Recipe (in 4
When we made pizza dough at home -- or make it on
vacation -- we use this recipe
(which is modified slightly from one we found in an old bread machine
recipe book). Mike likes to make two large, thick crust pizzas at a
time, so he quadruples the recipe. Please note that when he does this,
backs off on the olive oil to 2
backs off on the yeast to 2
Tbsp. (since the type of yeast we use does a really good job) and
adds 1/2 cup of sugar.
Amount x 2
Amount x 3
Amount x 4
When we load our homemade pizza crust with the toppings
of our choice, we bake it at 450°F as follows:
on a large pan for 16 minutes or
on the "big hole pan" for 15
Heating Your Pizza in Your Truck
If your homemade pizza was made in its entirety at home,
all you need to do is heat up on the road in a toaster oven, Jet Stream
Oven or microwave
We do not recommend baking a pizza with
lightweight toppings in a Jet Stream Oven since the high-speed air is
likely to shift them. Also, the Jet Stream Oven's maximum temperature
is 400°F, making it impossible to cook the dough at the temperature we
use for baking our homemade pizza. For initial baking, we recommend
that you use a regular oven or toaster oven.
Once the pizza has been baked and the toppings have
been "attached" to the crust with the melted cheese, we have found that
a Jet Stream Oven does a marvelous job of warming up the "pie" and
making the crust crispy.
Contrast this situation to warming up pizza in a
microwave oven, the result being that the crust becomes soggy. Mike
notes that when he has heated pizza in a microwave, the cheese tends to
ooze off the top of the pizza onto the plate.
Pizza can easily be frozen and reheated at a later
Photo Tutorial of Making Homemade Pizza
The following photo tutorial shows how we recently fixed
homemade pizza using pre-made pizza crusts and jarred pizza sauce at
home. This same technique can easily be used in your truck. Since the
pizza crust is already prepared, all you need to do is add the toppings
of your choice and bake it.
We chose as our base a
pre-made crust from Mama Mary's. The package we purchased contained
three pizza crusts.
Upon following the directions for preparation, we
noticed that the crust was not as thick as we would have liked.
Also, for our taste, the crust was not sweet
enough. Still these pre-made pizza crusts did a decent job. The cost of
the 3-pack was $2.50 at Wal-Mart.
This is a photo of the back
of the pizza crust package. Farther down on this page, we provide a
close-up of the directions at the top. Notice all of the nutrition
The package is vacuum-packed for preservation.
All three of the crusts were the same size. We
chose this size pizza crust because we wanted the pizza to fit in our
You can buy prepared "pizza
sauce" to put on your homemade pizza, but if you look at the list of
ingredients (see image below), you will find that the base is just
tomato puree (water and tomato paste).
We personally prefer to use spaghetti sauce on our
pizzas, but for the purposes of this page, we used the pizza sauce.
The cost of the pizza sauce
(minus tax) was $1.00 for 14 ounces. Just for kicks, Vicki decided to
see what would happen if she mixed and matched the store brand of
tomato paste and tomato sauce to come up with about the same number of
The 12 ounce can of tomato paste was (minus tax)
$0.75. The 8 ounce can of tomato sauce was (minus tax) $0.26.
Together, they cost $1.01 for 20 ounces of sauce.
This is where customization
of your homemade pizza gets personal. We personally like a
The store brand can of mushrooms meets our needs.
Just drain and put on top.
Some folks like to put fresh vegetables directly
on top of their pizzas, like mushrooms, tomatoes, green or red peppers,
onions, broccoli, jalapeño peppers, banana peppers, etc.
Besides pepperoni and mushrooms on our pizza, we
like extra cheese. Mike puts a layer of shredded mozzarella cheese
directly on top of the pizza sauce and another on top of all the
toppings he adds. Please note that not all cheeses are created equal.
Vicki made the photo of this label from the store brand of "natural
low-moisture part-skim mozzarella shredded cheese" so that you may see
the ingredients. If you are concerned about the foods you eat, please
investigate the differences between
Just as there are differences
in cheeses, there are differences in processed meats. We prefer using
pre-sliced pepperoni on our homemade pizza. There are two major brands
sold where we live and we prefer the brand whose package is shown.
Now the package says that the amount in the bag
"makes 4 large pizzas." Of course, this is open to interpretation. How
big are those "large" pizzas and how many pepperoni slices are on it?
Restaurants that sell large quantities of pizza
may offer a "pepperoni feast" option, which has a higher number of
slices than a traditional pepperoni pizza. When Mike fixes a pepperoni
feast-type pizza at home, he overlaps the edges of the pepperoni slices
The directions on the back of
the pre-made pizza crusts package calls for lightly brushing the crust
with olive oil.
We're not sure of the reason
behind this, other than perhaps to keep the crusts from being too dry.
Mike interpreted the brushing instruction to mean brushing both sides.
We don't have a pastry brush, so he spread oil on the crusts with a
spoon. Since we always use extra virgin olive oil in our pizza dough
recipes, we followed suit with this one. Please note that olive oil can
be purchased in different grades and different size containers.
After spreading on the olive
oil on one crust, Mike prepared it by spreading on a layer of the pizza
sauce. Mike prefers a "light" amount of sauce. Vicki prefers just a
little more. Please note that pies made with heavier amounts of sauce
are likely to ooze sauce upon being cut or bitten.
We estimated the cost of these three homemade pizzas
pizza crusts as follows:
Pre-made pizza crusts
Pizza sauce (store brand,
half jar used)
Mozzarella cheese (store
brand, double layer on all three pizzas, estimated cost)
Mushrooms (store brand, one
can was enough for all three pizzas)
The small pre-made pizza crusts
fit on our toaster oven tray, which is about 7" front to back. The
radius is therefore about 3.5 inches, giving an area of 38.484510575.
Multiply this figure by three to get the total area for three 7-inch
In measuring our two large
pizza pans at home, Vicki found that they are 15" across or 7.5"
radius. The area is therefore 176.714589375.
Of course, we did not calculate the cost of the toppings
that it would take to cover a 15" pizza to see if it is more cost
effective than the smaller ones.
Pizza made with English Muffins
When making homemade pepperoni pizza (with no mushrooms)
on English muffins, we add a little more than a heaping tablespoon of
sauce, three slices of pepperoni and a very small amount of cheese (one
layer) to each half. Since the muffins have already been baked, the
only baking that is needed is to cook the toppings. This is a very fast
When it comes to making pizza, the sky is the limit on
toppings. You can find ideas for pizzas online.(2)
Money saving tip:
Making homemade pizza can be much more cost effective than buying a
store- or restaurant-prepared pizza.
On top of that, when you have a pizza delivered,
it is expected that you will tip the delivery person. When you make
your own, you can save the tip.
Although it is not necessarily thought of as a
money saving tip, by using ingredients that you personally approve for
your pizza and by practicing good hygiene, you can help reduce
health-related problems associated with inferior ingredients or workers
not using good hygiene. Of course, some ingredients are healthier than
others. There are places online where you can find nutrition data.(3)
Please use your own best judgment.