Three Cheese Pizza with Pesto and Goat Cheese

Three-cheese pizza

Three-cheese pizza

I never thought I would remember fondly any of the dishes served on my college campus, but upon leaving I found myself craving the three-cheese pizza served at the cafeteria! To be fair, the food on campus did improve over my four years there and by the end I was actually enjoying my lunch choices…or maybe I had just adapted to the American college food ๐Ÿ™‚ I have to admit that the first quarter was quite rough and I relied quite a bit on the salad and fresh fruit bar in the house kitchen, but after a while I did get used to eating bland beef and mashed potatoes with potato skins! In Romania, we do a pretty good job at peeling our potatoes, so it was quite a shock to see the skins in my mashed potatoes ๐Ÿ™‚

Anyways, back to the pizza. I didn’t fully realize what made it so great until I tried to order three cheese pizzas at Italian restaurants. First of all, none (not even the four cheese ones!) of the ones I’ve found come with goat cheese! Most of them have mozzarella and parmesan, and another very similar cheese, lacking the nice delicious creaminess from the goat cheese. Also, most pizzas out there use tomato sauce as a base, and not pesto. I hardly paid any attention to these details during my rushed lunches, but came to appreciate them after a few failed attempts of finding the three cheese pizza I liked!

Needless to say, I gave up on trying to find it on the menu of a restaurant. Then one day, I had the brilliant idea that I could try to make it myself! It is true, I do not own a brick pizza oven, but I can at least the get the flavor of the toppings right! Fast forward a few years and one great basil plant buy, and voila…my three-cheese pizza!

Ingredients (makes one small pizza):

  • 1 pizza dough from here
  • 4 Tb pesto from here
  • 2 oz goat cheese, crumbled
  • 1/2 cup mozzarella, shredded
  • 1/4 cup parmesan, grated

Preheat the oven to 425 F. Roll out the dough and place on a baking sheet. Bake for ~10 minutes, or until almost fully cooked through. Remove from oven and spread the pesto. Top with goat cheese crumbles, and then sprinkle with the mozzarella and parmesan. Return to oven and cook for an additional 5 minutes, or until the cheese has melted. Remove from oven, slice, and serve warm!

three cheese pizza with goat cheese and basil pesto

three cheese pizza with goat cheese and basil pesto

This is quite fast to make once you have the dough and pesto. I greatly enjoyed it, but I will understand if you’re not as determined to make it as I was ๐Ÿ™‚

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5 Responses to Three Cheese Pizza with Pesto and Goat Cheese

  1. Well timed – It’s National Pizza month. And this looks plain delicious, any time of the year. For me, the college food I’m nostalgic for is peanut butter fudge ripple ice cream. I must have gained 20 pounds on that stuff.

  2. I completely agree that no cheese pizza would compare to the one from your cafeteria if it didn’t include goat cheese! How fun that you recreated it, and probably for a smaller price tag, enjoyed what your taste buds had been missing ๐Ÿ™‚ Sounds so delicious! I love pesto as a pizza sauce! My fave local pizzeria serves a Quattro Formaggi pie with mozzarella, fontina, gorgonzola, and parmesan….. it is insanely good, I will have to sub pesto next time for their red sauce. You’ve got me hungry ๐Ÿ™‚

    • the quatrro formaggi pizza sounds really good too! you can sub pesto for their red sauce? Please tell me they have stores in LA as well ๐Ÿ™‚ I recently looked into some Neapolitan pizza places in the area and even though they claim they’re traditional and authentic, their menu is small and filled with ‘American’ pizzas!!! there is no way Hawaiian pizza counts as traditional Italian pizza!!!! so I have to keep looking for a restaurant, but until then I can keep making my own ๐Ÿ˜‰

      • Sadly, they are just a local family-owned shop! I actually worked there as a hostess for some months — I have ALWAYS been a fan of their Neapolitan pizzas and often customers would order Canadian-bacon-and-pinapple and would get kinda pissy when I told them we didn’t have that. Their pizza margharita is amaze!

        So sorry that your search has turned up short thus far! Have you read about the new Baking Steel? That’s the next piece of equipment I want for ever better pizza at home!! I need to save my $$$!

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