If you’ve been following along on my TikTok or Instagram, you know that Matt and I make homemade pizza every week. He’s obsessed with the dough and I’m obsessed with the toppings. This week we decided to take our pizza-game to the next level with a vegan twist on a Baked Ziti Pizza.
The first time I had pasta on pizza was the Macaroni & Cheese Pizza at Ian’s in Madison, Wisconsin (go Badgers!). It’s crazy that I’ve never tried to recreate that pie, and I’m sure someday I will. But today’s Pasta Pizza was able to be thrown together without effort or planning (thanks to Lean Pantry), so Pesto Pasta Pizza became my first ever pizza-pasta concoction.
So what goes into the pizza? I had a half bag of fusilli which I fully cooked and cooled before tossing with some leftover pesto and some of the pasta-cooking water. Matt stretched out the dough and I spread on a generous layer of spicy marinara. Then comes the pesto pasta. Right before adding it to the pie I tossed in a little more of that cooking-water for extra moisture (because dry pizzas are ICK). I then topped it all off with dollops of my homemade Garlicky Sunflower Seed Cream and a bit more marinara. Into the oven it went and out of the oven it came – pure pasta & pizza perfection.
Pesto Pasta Pizza (vegan)
1/3 lb dry pasta (fusilli or penne)
1/2 cup vegan pesto, recipe here
1 pizza dough ball (14” stretched), recipe here
1 cup marinara sauce (I’m using this spicy arrabbiata variety)
1/4 cup sunflower seed cream or cashew cream, recipe here
Remove the dough from the fridge in advance, if needed. Preheat oven to 500 degrees (or as hot as it will go).
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add dry pasta, cook according to package instructions. Reserve at least 1 cup of the cooking water. Drain pasta and cool.
In a medium mixing bowl, mix pesto with some of the pasta cooking water (I used about 1/2 cup). Add the cooled pasta on top and toss. Add more water if needed. Season with salt to taste.
Stretch out the pizza dough into a 14” inch circle directly onto a peel (if using a peel/pizza stone) or stretch dough out directly into a similar size pan. You may want to oil the pan first, depending on the pan and your dough.
Spread a scant cup of sauce evenly over the dough (reserving some for the top). Now fo the pasta. If dry, add a splash of the pasta-cooking water then add the pesto pasta to the pizza. Top the whole thing off with sunflower or cashew cream dollops as well as some marinara dollops.
Transfer to oven and bake for about 10 minutes (depends on the oven temperature and cooking vessel). The crust and bottom should be light-to-medium golden in color.