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Growing Greens For Pizza

by | Nov 6, 2018 | Food, GARDENING | 0 comments

Growing Greens (and other veg) for Pizza

Restaurant food is great but they usually can’t grow the special additives a really great pizza needs. Only a gardener can grow those fresh  little greens that make pizza so yummy.

Since I bought my Vitamix I have started making pizza again because it is just so easy. And then I found out from a Chef at Riso restaurant in Lanceville that you can make your dough ahead of time and use it up over a 2 week period. Simply leave the extra dough in a container in the fridge until you need that second pizza and then allow it to come to room temperature on the counter for a few hours before rolling out the dough.

Pizza is easy to make but only a gardener can grow the little extras that make it so yummy to eat. Here I’ve added fresh micro-green basil and butternut squash toasted with fresh sage.

I grow greens like fresh arugula, mustard greens, spinach and basil indoors under grow lights for my pizza. Growing under lights is a perfect activity for winter gardeners. P.S. Like a Christmas cake you have to start growing lettuce and greens early under lights if you want a fresh salad or fresh basil for a winter pizza. I found Basil takes about 20-25 days under lights in cool winter weather but arugula spinach and lettuce are ready to snip and eat in 8-15 days.

Pre-cooking butternut squash with fresh sage gives a glorious garden flavour to pizza. The squash is stored in a cool room for 6-8 months and slowly eaten in soups and stews and pizzas. PS My dog likes it too so I add it to her bowl.

To grow greens – also called microgreens –  under lights, simply fill a tray or flat with moist purchased potting mix. There is no need for compost or fertilizer because  the nutrients are in the seed for the first week or so of growing. Sprinkle the seeds on the soil and cover with a small dusting of extra soil. Water sparingly and then place another flat filled with moist soil but no seeds on top of the seeded tray for three to four days to add weight to the seeded tray. Once seeds start to sprout lift off the cover tray and mist or water the seeds in the growing tray until you get a crop of seedlings in a week or so. Snip micro-greens with scissors once they have a full second or even third set of leaves.

These peas micro-greens are about 6 days old.


Tomatoes fresh from the garden can be sliced thin and sprinkled on top of the pizza just before you add cheese (or if tomatoes are out of season at your house simply slice  fresh-frozen tomatoes and place these on the pie!)

I have made pizzas with only Truffle oil, bacon and arugula (see feature photo.) I have also used  the whole batch of dough for one pizza but HH (Helpful Husband) didn’t like it as much as the thin crust pizzas I make when I split the same recipe into two crusts. So puffy pizza is the rarity in our house. Leftover dough is left in the fridge because I try to make pizza once a week and extra dough is the perfect quick meal for the two of us on the second week.

As soon as the outdoor garden stops providing salad greens start growing them indoors. Here the micro-greens include spinach and peas and Juliet tomatoes, saved from the garden. They are usually good to eat until well into December. Green onions are from my greenhouse.


An excellent side dish for pizza is micro-green salad served in the winter.  Micro-green salads are simply dressed with Basil flavoured Olive oil and a pinch of sea salt and they are ready to serve. One of my favourite greens for winter salads is pea shoots. They are ready in a week from seeding but can be cut back once or twice before being added to the compost and starting again. Seeds for growing  micro-greens come directly from Saskatchewan where  Mumms seeds is based.

I love how Mumms sells organic seeds and gives loads of ideas online for growing them and succeeding with everything from peas to sunflowers.

Wild collected mushrooms like Chanterelles make home-made pizzas really special. We dry the extra mushrooms so we can enjoy them year round on pizzas.

PS Do you have questions about Gardening? Join in the conversation on my facebook live event every Monday by clicking right HERE.

 Donna Balzer is the Brand Ambassador for BCGreenhouse Builders and she has two greenhouses in her big backyard.

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