Caprese pizza is an easy dinner or appetizer recipe surely to make the slices disappear in minutes. And with a delicious balsamic glaze and a variety of beautiful tomatoes, the flavor pops right off the plate.
Let me paint this picture – it’s 6 pm, your significant other just walked in the door and you have sports practice in an hour. This is where most of you (guilty here too) just turn to McDonald’s and call it a night. No need!
This made in under 30 and eat in mere minutes Caprese Pizza dinner doubles down as an appetizer, snack, lunch, heck eat it cold and call it breakfast too!
Homemade Caprese pizza is hands down one of the easiest ways to get dinner done and everyone satisfied. Pizza is good, it’s quick, and it’s way less guilt than caving into fast food or cereal for dinner.
Why you should make this Caprese Pizza Recipe
Friday Night is Pizza Night: This pizza recipe, which is perfect for Pizza night, makes approximately 8 full slices of pizza. Let’s get starting making your ooey, gooey, deliciously divine homemade Caprese pizza!
Family Fun: We typically get everyone their own pizza dough in my home so each person can customize their pizza. It’s one of the fun meals that we adore making together.
Quick to the table: There really are many dishes (like the majority of them) that take at least an hour to make and also destroy the kitchen. This is not one of those. Super easy to make and very quick, making this a perfect school night meal.
Scroll to the bottom for a printable version of this post, including all measurements and instructions, so you can follow along in your kitchen without being on your phone.
- balsamic vinegar glaze- I keep store bought Balsamic glaze in my pantry for occasions like this (and Caprese salad of course) but if you want to go all out, you can make your own. There are instructions at the bottom of the post.
- pre-packaged pizza crust – I am a big fan of making everything homemade, but there is nothing easier than using a premade refrigerated pizza dough. I like to find artisan doughs or grab some fresh dough I can roll out from my local store bakery. There are also other options below for non-traditional crust options.
- virgin olive oil & basil pesto – Basil pesto comes in small jars by the spaghetti aisle sauces.
- mozzarella cheese – For the best experiance, use real fresh buffalo mozzarella slices. Grab the pre-sliced for even cheese melting.
- heirloom tomatoes – Not as commonly used in many dishes, heirloom tomatoes come in a variety of pretty shapes, colors and sizes, really bringing something extra to the dish.
- sliced fresh basil leaves – Nothing replaces fresh herbs, so try to use FRESH basil leaves versus anything dried.
- kosher salt and black pepper
What kind of crust to use?
Meal prep for Caprese pizza: Note pre-made pizza crust instructions to find out what temperature to preheat the oven. You can easily grab bagged fresh dough from most bakery areas in grocery stores or simply unroll dough from a can.
There are several ways to assemble Caprese pizza. You can use pre-made pizza crust (as I did here), get all crazy and make your own homemade pizza dough you have loads of kitchen time today, or just use French bread for more of a Caprese flatbread or bruschetta option.
Other choices for non-traditional pizza crusts are bagels, Naan bread, or healthier options like chickpea or cauliflower crust.
How to make Caprese Pizza
- Mix oil and pesto together and spread onto pizza crust. Season the entire pizza crust with salt and pepper.
- Place sliced tomatoes and fresh mozzarella cheese slices on top.
- Bake pizza on a baking sheet or pizza stone for 12-15 minutes or until cheese is melted and crust is golden brown. The amount of degrees will be on the pizza dough instructions you choose.
- Remove Caprese pizza from the oven and top with fresh basil over pizza and drizzle of balsamic glaze before serving.
Mix up the tomatoes: While nothing replaces the texture, colors, and flavor of the beautiful heirloom tomatoes, Caprese is super simple to replicate using any fresh tomato. Even adding halved Wild wonders grape tomatoes can make for an awesome pizza.
Add some prosciutto! Everything I ate in Italy had prosciutto, and while it’s a little bit pricey, it’s amazing. Other common Italian meats are pancetta or pepperoni, although those will change the dynamic of your pizza.
Drizzle that oil: Oil and pesto are amazing together. In this case, we use it as the light but totally enjoyable “sauce” that doesn’t overpower the cheese and tomatoes. It’s also great o serve a little extra as a drizzle.
Homemade Balsamic Glaze
While it’s fine to purchase pre-made Balsamic reduction or balsamic glaze from the store, it’s pretty easy to make the perfect balsamic glaze reduction.
- In a small saucepan add the balsamic vinegar.
- Heat Balsamic vinegar on medium-low for 5-6 minutes.
- Stir occasionally until the mixture begins to thicken.
- Remove balsamic reduction from heat and let cool.
- The mixture will continue to thicken as it cools.
Tools used to make Perfect Caprese Pizza
Cooking is half about following instructions and half about preparation. Here are two tools that will help you make sure your pizza is just as good as your local pie shop.
- Pizza Stone – pizza stones are great for a beautiful crust without the burn.
- Pizza Cutter – nothing like using a perfect pizza cutter to make sure you cut even slices no matter your ingredients.
Can you make Caprese pizza with Grape Tomatoes or Cherry Tomatoes?
Really the tomato choice is up to you, but I like the regular heirloom tomatoes for Caprese. You can also get fancy and get the orange and yellow ones for a variety of flavors and textures, which is what we did here. It’s like an Italian restaurant but at home!
How long can leftover pizza be stored?
I have made this Caprese pizza about 20 times. It really is amazing but does not make great leftovers. The tomatoes will get soggy, and the cheese never quite melts the same. I do not recommend storing for much longer than one day in an airtight container.
Is there a way to make Caprese Pizza Keto?
In general, most people on a carb-free diet tend to stay away from tomatoes. Aside from altering the dough to a carb-friendly option, too many tomatoes can upset the low carb balance. Because tomatoes ARE a fruit, it’s almost impossible to make Caprese Pizza keto and still stick with the traditionally classic flavors.
Can chicken be added to Caprese pizza?
There is no doubt that recipes are meant to be experimented with and changed. And while adding a roasted chicken to tomatoes and cheese DOES sound wonderful, it will become super weighed down when we are talking about using FRESH mozzarella. I highly recommend sticking with light, thin meats like prosciutto if you want to add a little protein. As a side note, if you are interested in trying a really great dish that brings all those flavors together, try Caprese Stuffed Chicken.
Related Caprese Recipes
- Caprese Salad – Traditional salad with mozzarella balls and grape tomatoes.
- Caprese Salad Salsa – Bet you can’t dip just once!
- Caprese Sandwich Sliders – Skip the salad and pull out the sweet bread, these melty sliders are just what you want RIGHT NOW!
- Caprese Lady Bug Appetizer – So cute you wont even want to eat them!
- Baked Feta Pasta – this is the famous TikTok Feta Pasta!
- Feta Cheese Dip
- Everything but the Bagel Avocado Salad
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BEST Caprese Pizza Recipe
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1 pre-packed pizza crust
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon basil pesto
- salt and pepper
- 7 slices mozzarella cheese
- 9 slices heirloom tomatoes
- 3 tablespoons sliced fresh basil
- Mix extra virgin olive oil and basil pesto together and spread in a thin layer onto pizza crust.
- Season the entire crust with salt and black pepper.
- Place fresh mozzarella cheese slices and thinly sliced heirloom tomatoes on top.
- Bake Caprese pizza for 12-15 minutes (you can look at pizza crust package for recommended temp and timing) or until cheese is melted all the way.
- Remove pizza from the oven and top with freshly torn basil leaves and drizzle with balsamic glaze just prior to serving.
Making Homemade Balsamic Glaze/Reduction
- In a small saucepan add vinegar. Heat on medium low for 5-6 minutes.
- Stir occasionally until the mixture begins to thicken. Remove from heat and let cool. Balsamic reduction will continue to thicken as it cools. Drizzle over pizza prior to serving.