You know how I feel about disappointing pizza in our local area restaurants. Most of the time, I would rather just make homemade pizza to satisfy that craving. That way I can make custom crusts, custom ingredients to please all the pizza experts in my family. Sometimes I go a little crazy and make way too much. Sometimes, I just make one or two. Usually one of our girls throws in a little request for taco pizza, but I don’t always make it. This time, I had everything ready to go and taco pizza was the star of the show. When I make tacos and let’s be real, it’s at least once a week since we never seem to get tired of them and there’s so many different variations you can do. I often will save back some of the beef taco meat in the fridge or freezer, either for taco salads, taco soup, nachos, or . . . TACO PIZZA!
This time, I started to make fresh dough for the pizzas, but then I found a bunch of homemade frozen dough already to go in the freezer. So I decided to use the frozen dough to help clear out the freezer and made the fresh dough into S’more Pizza dough. Maybe now the freezer drawer will close without needing a good smash of contents and a heave-ho push. Since it was a little late in the day, I just warmed the oven up and put the frozen dough in greased bowls, covered with a light towel and let them thaw and rise. I made my sauce for my other pizzas and lined up all my topping ingredients in the meantime. Within an hour or so, the dough was all ready to go.
For taco pizza, I’ve done a few different sauces. I’ve done nacho cheese, refried beans, and a ranch based sauce. The simplest and family favorite is refried beans so there’s really no work there. Just open the can and spread the sauce on the prepared dough. Even my anti bean husband doesn’t notice or mind the beans as the sauce base. You could top the beans with a little nacho cheese for an even better sauce!
Then, load that pizza up with cheese, cheese, and more cheese! I like to use a colby jack or a mexican blend cheese for taco pizza, but anything will work.
Then, I take out that leftover taco meat from a few days ahead. Just cold and straight from the fridge. You can use chicken or pork, or whatever taco meat you have, or make some fresh if you have the time and don’t have a shelf constantly stocked and dedicated to taco leftovers in the fridge like we do.
Then, I add a combo of parmesan and Asiago cheeses. Well, really just any excuse to use my new fancy cheese grater. No skimping on cheese here!
Now, I like to add just a little more seasoning to bring it all up to speed. I like Adobo seasonings by Goya. Any taco flavored seasonings will work, or you could just make your own blend with ground cumin, garlic, and a little salt. Add some cayenne pepper if you like more kick.
To finalize this Taco Pizza, I brush the crust with a little butter and then sprinkle a little salt.
Bake in a hot oven 425-450° F, until the cheese is melted and starting to get golden. I don’t time it but usually around 7 – 10 minutes. I like a hot oven to help give a crisper crust and I prefer to bake on a pizza stone, but I only own one so it’s usually a toss up on which pizza gets to bake on it.
This is what makes the pizza! I love a little sour cream, fresh chopped tomatoes, lettuce, cilantro, and sliced avocado. Finish with a splash of Cholula sauce and this pizza is ready to be eaten. You could also have little tortilla chips or Doritos if you like a little crunch on top of your taco pizza.
Here’s the complete recipe for you:
Homemade Pizza Dough
Makes around 4 medium-large pizzas. Oil, flour, and water amounts may vary slightly depending on temperature and humidity.
4 teas active dry yeast
2 C warm tap water
6 C Flour. I use 1/2 Bread Flour and 1/2 All Purpose
2 TBS honey
4 TBS Olive Oil plus more for topping
a few TBS of melted or softened butter for topping
4 teas Kosher Salt plus more for topping
pinch of Garlic Powder for topping
Pizza Dough Directions:
Heat oven to 200 degrees F, and then turn the oven off.
Add yeast, honey, and warm water to a stand mixer and stir to combine. Let this sit for 3-4 minutes until it becomes bubbly and yeast is active.
Add in Salt and Olive Oil and stir.
Add in 4 C of the flour and with a dough hook, start mixing the dough.
Scrape the sides of the bowl and dough hook occasionally with rubber spatula.
Gradually add in the remaining flour a little at a time until the flour is incorporated. Remember it may take a little more or less flour depending on temp and humidity.
You may need to add in more flour if dough is too sticky, or add in a tiny bit of water and oil if dough seems too crumbly and dry. You want a smooth looking dough. Once the dough seems to be the right consistency, let the dough hook knead the dough for 4-5 minutes, cleaning off the dough hook a couple times until the dough is smooth and no longer sticky to the touch. You could be able to hold it, stretch it etc with very little sticking to your hands.
Either add a little olive oil or non stick spray to a large tall sided bowl(s) and add the dough ball to the bowl. Turn the dough to coat all sides with oil. I used two bowls.
Cover the bowl with a clean towel and place it in the warm oven. Let the dough rise for about an hour. While it’s rising, make your pizza sauce and get your toppings ready.
Once the dough has risen, divide it up into dough balls and gently form your pizza crusts. Lightly spray pizza pans with nonstick spray before placing crust on the pan.
Once sauce and toppings are added, bake pizza for 7-10 minutes at 425-450 degrees F until the crust is done and all cheese is melted and beginning to become golden.
Freezing Dough: You can easily freeze extra dough. After it is mixed together and kneaded until smooth and non sticky, you can freeze the dough before it rises. Just transfer the dough to some Press and Seal or plastic wrap and then into a freezer bag and it will be ready to use when you want to enjoy a quick homemade pizza. To use frozen dough, just take it out of the freezer and let it thaw at room temperature for a few hours (4-6) or in the fridge over night. Remove it from the Press and Seal or plastic wrap and place into a greased bowl. Toss to coat the dough with oil. Cover with clean cloth and place in warm oven for an hour or so until the dough has risen. It may take a little longer to rise than fresh dough, but it will still make a great pizza.
recipe for pizza dough (see above), or just use store-bought dough found in freezer or refrigerated section at grocery store.
Sauce – 1 Can refried beans or nacho cheese, or combination. You could use ranch if you like too.
Cheese – whatever shredded cheese you like. I like Colby Jack or a Mexican blend. I add some fresh grated parmesan and Asiago too.
Meat – cooked taco seasoned meat, either beef, chicken, pork – whatever you have.
Taco seasoning – I use Goya Adobo seasoning. Whatever you prefer is fine.
Toppings – Shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes, fresh cilantro, sour cream, sliced avocado, hot sauce
Melted Butter and a little salt for edge of crust
Prepare homemade or store-bought pizza dough and place on slightly greased pizza pan or use pizza stone.
Preheat oven to 425-450° F depending on how hot your oven runs and if you are cooking more than one pizza at a time.
Spread refried beans or nacho cheese over top of prepared crust.
Layer on cheese.
Sprinkle on cooked taco seasoned meat.
Sprinkle on more cheese.
Top with a light sprinkle of taco seasoning.
Brush edge of crust with melted butter and a little salt.
Bake pizza for 7-10 minutes 425-450° F or until cheese is melted and crust is done. I take the pizza out of the oven when the cheese starts to get golden.
Slice and serve with toppings.