Dress up a frozen pizza

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Frozen pizza is an American tradition, but it can be tough to keep this staple interesting. What’s a mom to do?

When you need food that’s easy and fast, stick with what you know and jazz it up. Dress up your frozen pizza with these tips. After all, pizza with healthy toppings is a much better option than fast food. Plus, it's a kid favorite — even for the picky eaters. And when it's more fun for you and your family, you know it will be a hit.

Kid options

Make sure you have the happiest kids on the block by making their food fun. There are plenty of fun, kid-friendly pizza toppings — your imagination and the kids' taste buds are your only limits.

  • Slice hot dogs and sprinkle them on the top of a cheese pizza.
  • Ketchup and mustard in fun squeeze bottles puts kids in control of the pizza-decorating fun.
  • Nothing says “great pizza” like more cheese! Plus, an ooey-gooey pizza will have your kids chewing too much to talk, and that gives you some much needed quiet time. Worried about the fat content of all that cheese? Go for the shredded low-fat, part-skim cheese and you can add it to your kids’ pizza without guilt.
  • Baloney, ham or other deli meats can be cut into fun shapes for pizza-time fun. Cut out hearts, stars or footballs and let kids put them on the pizza.
  • Chopped-up fresh or frozen veggies make great tools for kids to create fun faces on a pizza. They’re healthy, too!
  • Cooked ground beef and shredded cheddar make a cheeseburger pizza your kids will love.

Don’t forget to let your kids in on the fun — ask them what foods they would like to see on their pizza.

Grown-up options

If you’re making food for both kids and grown-ups, consider purchasing individual pizzas so everyone can have exactly what they want. This way you don’t have to worry about selective eaters or food allergies. Single-serving pizzas also keep kids from running in and out of the room the adults are socializing in.

Here are some adult-friendly options for you and your loved ones to enjoy. Get creative! Pizza doesn’t have to be the same every time; it’s okay to go a little wild and create a signature frozen pizza that’s unlike anything you can buy at the store.

  • Taco meat, cheddar cheese and chili flakes will take your pizza south of the border. If it’s a little too spicy, add a dollop of sour cream to each slice after the pizza is out of the oven.
  • Cajun seasoning with blackened catfish strips will give you a New Orleans — style pizza that won’t have you singing the blues.
  • Put together a vegetarian pizza with tomatoes, broccoli, cucumber, garlic and other seasonings to make a garden pizza that will have everyone asking for seconds.
  • Tabasco and ground, cooked Italian sausage turns your pizza into a real spaghetti Western. You’ll want to saddle up and ride out after tasting this great pizza combo.
  • Adding your favorite barbecue sauce and shredded chicken breast to a regular cheese will give you a tasty buffalo-chicken pizza.
  • Shredded beef and peppers (sweet or hot) are like a beef sandwich with cheese — only there’s crust instead of a bun. For a Philly cheesesteak pizza, use cheese sauce or spray cheese and peppers to complete your pizza experience.
  • Feeling adventurous? Go with smoked salmon (or lox) and capers. The capers taste a little lemony while giving a satisfying crunch. They complement smoked salmon and give your pizza a smoky, tart taste that will also mix wonderfully with pizza sauce and cheese flavors. This is also a healthy option because of the added omega-3 benefits of salmon.
  • All you need for a Hawaiian pizza is some pineapple, baby shrimp and garlic. You’ll be doing the hula in no time!
  • Looking for a little romance from your pizza pie? Make one of your individual pizzas with sliced Brie cheese and pear wedges for a little “oh-la-la” your friends are sure to go ga-ga for.

Healthy options

Along with low-fat, part-skim cheese, there are other ways to add healthy toppings to your pizza. Ground turkey can be added to the top of a pizza for a healthier meat option. Any kind of fresh veggie can be added to pizza pretty easily as long as you cut them up into small pieces and let them cook the whole duration the pizza is in the oven. Frozen vegetables cook in even less time — only minutes — so use whichever one will use your pizza-making time to its best advantage. If you cut the veggies up into small pieces, they will sink into the cheese and be tastier than veggies by themselves. Consider it a fun and healthful eating alternative!

Food allergies

If a family member or guest has a food allergy, take the extra precaution of using a knife to break off a slice or two of pizza while it’s still frozen. Even better, give each guest an individual pizza to customize and you won’t have to worry about a mushroom jumping from one pizza to another. To make it easier on you, allow each guest to decorate his or her own pizza. That way you can concentrate on yourself and the kids. Including guests with food allergies makes you a great hostess, and also lets them be part of the fun.

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