Updated: 01/02/2017 3:52 PM | Print Story |  Email

Fix My Food: Healthy Pizza Margherita

We're fixing unhealthy recipes all this week. In this recipe, we ditch the dough and use a vegetable as a flatbread pizza crust. Nutritionist and exercise expert, Maria Emmerich starts us off with a flatbread pizza recipe that has a unique crust.


Pizza Margherita


PREP TIME: 10 minutes, plus 15 minutes to drain the zucchini
COOK TIME: 15 minutes
YIELD: One 12-inch pizza (6 servings)


3 cups shredded zucchini (about 1½ medium zucchini)
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
1½ cups grated Parmesan cheese
(about 6 ounces)
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 large egg, beaten


1 cup Pizza Sauce
1 (4-ounce) ball fresh mozzarella cheese, cut into ?-inch-thick slices
¼ cup fresh basil leaves

1. Place a cast-iron pizza pan or pizza stone in the oven and preheat the oven to 525°F. (Preheating the pizza pan/stone helps create a crispier crust.)

2. Make the crust: In a large bowl, combine the shredded zucchini and salt. Toss together and set aside for 10 to 15 minutes. Squeeze as much excess moisture out of the zucchini as you can, discarding the water. Place the zucchini back in the bowl. (Do not skip this step or the pizza crust will be soggy.)

3. To the zucchini, add the Parmesan cheese, oregano, basil, and egg. Mix with your hands to incorporate all of the ingredients.

4. Place a piece of parchment paper that is at least 15 inches long on a large cookie sheet without edges, so you can slide the parchment onto the pizza stone easily.

5. Place the dough onto the parchment paper. Using your hands, spread the dough to form a circle 12 inches in diameter and ¼ inch thick. Pinch the edges to form a crust. Slide the crust on the parchment paper onto the hot pizza stone in the oven (keep the cookie sheet close for putting on toppings). Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, until the crust starts to brown.

6. Slide the parchment paper and crust back onto the cookie sheet. Top the pizza crust with the sauce, cheese slices, and basil. Transfer the pizza from cookie sheet back onto the heated pizza stone in the oven and bake for an additional 4 minutes, until the cheese is melted and golden.


MAMA Maria’s Meatballs

Prep Time: 6 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Yield: 8 servings

2 pounds ground beef
¼ cup chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 eggs
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan or Romano cheese (or nutritional yeast if dairy sensitive)
1 1/2 TBS Italian seasoning
Celtic sea salt and ground black pepper to taste
2 cups mushrooms, finely chopped
1 cup Marinara sauce OR beef broth

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Combine beef, onions, garlic, eggs, cheese, seasoning, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Blend chopped mushrooms into meat mixture. Slowly add the broth or marinara sauce, 1/2 cup at a time. The mixture should be very moist but still hold its shape if rolled into meatballs. Shape into meatballs. Arrange in a single layer on a large, shallow baking sheet. Bake meatballs in the preheated oven 35 minutes, turning occasionally, until evenly browned.

Serve with Zoodles or Cabbage Noodles and your favorite no-sugar added marinara!