THIS IS A GAME-CHANGER.
Butternut squash + pizza = !!
As you all know, I love pizza more than anything. And when I went to my local pizza restaurant a few years ago and spotted a pizza that was smothered in butternut squash puree, sautéed spinach, and bacon, I was floored. Butternut squash instead of sauce?!
It was one of the most interesting pizza combinations that I came across and I knew that I needed to make it at home. I finally decided to whip up this pizza when my aunt and grandma where over for dinner to get their take on it. (they loved it too!!)
And it could not have been easier to make!
What makes this so simple to pull together is that you can make all the components ahead of time and then assemble at the last minute.
The pizza dough I used was my go-to pizza dough that I normally use – flour + yeast + salt + olive oil + warm water. It comes together easily in the stand mixer and is ready to use in about 2 hours!
The butternut squash puree is just as easy! I roasted one pound of butternut squash cubes (tossed in some olive oil + salt + pepper) in a 375-degree oven for 20-25 minutes until tender. I tossed the squash into a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Puree the squash until smooth, adding in low sodium chicken broth (I added about one cup) to aid in the pureeing process. Note: this makes a lot of puree – I used about a cup for the pizza itself and saved the rest for snacking later!
Finally, fry up some diced up bacon until crisp. Remove the bacon from the pan, drain off the grease, and then cook the spinach in the delicious bacon-y skillet until wilted.
Now we assemble.
Preheat your oven to 475 degrees.
Spread the dough out into a thin rectangle on a greased baking sheet.
Lightly spread the dough with butternut squash puree, leaving a one-inch border on the edge (because everyone loves the crust!).
Sprinkle over some grated mozzarella and then place on some pieces of fresh mozzarella. YUM!
Then liberally spread the wilted spinach and bacon bits over the whole pizza.
All that’s left is to pop the pie into the oven and bake for 10-15 minutes until the bottom is golden and crisp and the cheese is melty!
Then dig in!
Seriously, once you’ve tried Butternut Squash Pizza, you’re never going back to the traditional!!
So, what’s your favorite pizza topping?
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2¼ teaspoon active dry yeast, equivalent to one package
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Warm water, between 110-115 degrees
- Vegetable oil
- 1 pound butternut squash, cubed
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- ½-1 cup low sodium chicken broth
- Pizza dough
- Butternut Squash puree
- 3 strips bacon, diced
- 2 cups baby spinach
- ½ pound mozzarella cheese, grated
- ¼ pound fresh mozzarella, cut into thin slices
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine flour, yeast, salt, and olive oil. With the mixer on, add in enough warm water to make a soft, slightly sticky dough. Remove the dough from the bowl, add some vegetable oil to the bottom, and then place the dough ball back into the bowl. Cover the top with plastic wrap and a towel and set aside in a warm, draft-free place. Let the dough rise for about 2 hours or until doubled in size.
- Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Lightly spray a rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray.
- Add squash to the baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss to coat the squash and then pop the baking sheet in the oven. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the squash is tender.
- Add the roasted squash to the bowl of a food processor and pulse until the squash is broken down. With the food processor running, add in small portions of broth until the texture is completely smooth. Set the puree aside. Portion about a cup for the pizza and save the rest for later! (to make more pizza!!)
- Preheat your oven to 475 degrees. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray and set aside.
- In a small skillet set over medium heat, add in the bacon. Cook until just crisp and then remove to a paper towel-lined plate. Drain the bacon grease from the pan.
- Return the skillet to medium heat and add in the spinach. Cook the spinach until just wilted. Remove the spinach and set aside.
- Spread the pizza dough onto the baking sheet. Spoon on some of the butternut squash puree and spread evenly over the crust, leaving a one-inch border. Sprinkle over the grated mozzarella cheese and layer on the fresh mozzarella slices. Then evenly spread the wilted spinach and bacon bits over the cheese.
- Bake the pizza for 10-15 minutes until the bottom is golden and crisp and the cheese is melty. Cut into squares and dig in!