First off, any menu plans you have for your next dinner, please put them on hold. Make this pizza the second you have the chance. Sometimes things this good just can’t wait, nor should they.
The inspiration for this post comes from a frequent outing to an amazing pizza place (We The Pizza here in D.C.). They had such an exciting menu that listed pizzas that aren’t your everyday norm (yeah move over pepperoni – you’re seriously boring me). I quickly noticed they offered spinach artichoke pizza, which surprisingly I haven’t tried before, so of course I had to order it. I’m telling you, it was unlike any other pizza I’ve had before – which of course meant I needed to come home and make a copycat recipe to share with everyone. So, the next day I went and bought the ingredients and made one of the best pizzas I’ve ever made. Yes, it was that good. I may have had other plans for things I’ve been wanting to post, but those could definitely wait because this is definitely one of my new favorite pizzas. The crust is perfectly golden and crisp on the outside, it’s then covered with a thin layer of olive oil followed by a generous layer of a thick béchamel sauce which is loaded with sautéed spinach, then that is layered with a fair amount of fresh spinach after which three varieties of cheeses are sprinkled evenly over the top (which melt together so well and create that gooey, stretchy cheese that every pizza should have), and of course it’s finished off with the crowning jewels, plenty of artichoke hearts which roast to perfection. See, I told you this needs to be made asap. It may seem somewhat basic, like when I first got started I really questioned if I’d be capable of leaving out herbs, but this pizza really doesn’t need anything more than what it’s got. If you make this pizza, you’ll pretty much feel like a pizza pro :)…and you may find yourself, like me, picking up any scraps you kids may have left behind (like those cheesy covered artichoke hearts, yeah there’s no way I’m going to sit there and figure out how to get them to like them, they are all mine!). Enjoy!
Every pizza should have that cheesy stretch…
- 1 (16 oz ) homemade or store bought pizza dough*
- 8 oz fresh spinach, divided
- 2 Tbsp butter
- 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup milk
- 1/4 tsp onion powder
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 4 oz provolone cheese (1 cup. I used deli slices and chopped)
- 2 oz shredded low-moisture mozzarella cheese (1/2 cup)
- 2 oz finely shredded parmesan cheese (slightly packed 1/2 cup)
- 6 - 8 canned artichoke hearts, drained well and quartered (don't use marinated)
- Red pepper flakes, for serving (optional)
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Place pizza stone in preheated oven and allow to rest in oven 20 minutes. Meanwhile, stretch and shape pizza dough over a sheet of parchment paper to a 13-inch round, while creating a taller rim along outer edge. Brush with 1 Tbsp olive oil and season crust lightly with salt and freshly ground black pepper, then allow to rest while pizza stone preheats (note that if your pizza crust has been refrigerated, be sure to bring it to room temperature first, then shape and let it rest the 20 minutes).
- In a large saucepan, heat remaining 1 Tbsp olive oil over medium-high heat. Once oil is hot, add 3/4 of the spinach and saute just until wilted. Transfer to a layer of paper towels and gently press some of the excess liquid out. Finely chop spinach and set aside.
- In a small saucepan, melt butter over medium heat, then while whisking add in flour and onion powder and cook 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Then while whisking slowly stir in milk and increase temperature to medium-high heat and cook, stirring constantly until mixture has thickened well. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat and stir in minced garlic and sautéed, chopped spinach. Chop remaining fresh spinach (you should have about 1 1/2 cups chopped), set aside.
- To assemble pizza, spread the spinach béchamel sauce (the white sauce) evenly over pizza crust, leaving the rim uncoated. Sprinkle chopped, fresh spinach over sauce followed by provolone, mozzarella and parmesan cheeses and chopped artichokes. Slide a pizza peel under parchment paper and carefully transfer pizza to hot pizza stone in oven. Bake 10 - 13 minutes until crust is golden brown. Cut into slices and serve warm sprinkled with red pepper flakes to taste if desired.
- *I used half of this recipe here, I made the whole recipe then used half for this pizza and froze the other half after the first rise.
- Recipe Source: Cooking Classy