A spinach and artichoke dip inspired pizza recipe with soft, chewy Neapolitan-style dough and plenty of cheese for a fun pizza date night!Jump to Recipe
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We love spinach and artichoke dip around here. It’s everything you want in a dip – creamy, cheesy, gooey, salty – but somehow it doesn’t feel as unhealthy as some other cheesy dips. Maybe we’re kidding ourselves, but hey, if we’re going to eat a bunch of cheese we might as well balance it out with some nutritious veggies in one go! So for April’s Pizza of the Month, we turned our favorite spinach and artichoke dip into a Neapolitan style pizza!
Fresh greens and veggies make great pizza toppings, and mozzarella and parmesan are the perfect pizza cheeses, so this seemed like a mashup just waiting to happen. And let me tell you, we’re so glad we tried this combo out.
This pizza is a delicious reimagination of spinach and artichoke dip. We altered our recipe just enough to intentionally make a pizza and not just slop spinach and artichoke dip onto some crust. It’s perfectly cheesy, with a drizzle of olive oil for some moisture but no traditional pizza sauce. The savory artichokes and garlic combined with the slight tanginess of cooked spinach give this pizza a powerful yet balanced flavor. And it cooks perfectly in a cast iron pan, using the methods outlined in our Mastering Pizza cookbook.
How To Make Spinach and Artichoke Neapolitan-Style Pizza
We’ve learned a lot from Mastering Pizza about how to make incredible pizza in a home oven, and one of the tricks we used for this pizza was the cast iron method. Here’s a basic rundown of how this works:
- Heat up your oven to its maximum temperature
- Open the oven door to let some heat escape, then switch on the broiler and close it back up
- Preheat a cast iron pan on the stove over high heat
- Assemble your pizza on a separate work surface and transfer it to the cast iron pan, or assemble it quickly on the pan
- Transfer the pizza into the oven and broil for 2-5 minutes, or until the crust is crispy and the cheese is bubbly
- Immediately transfer the cooked pizza to a cutting board or cooling rack before serving
In the cookbook, Vetri goes into a ton of helpful detail about why this method works and offers tips on how to ensure success every time. He’s also got some great recipes for all kinds of unique pizzas in there, many of which we’re itching to try! If you’re interested in diving deeper into the world of pizza, we highly recommend purchasing a copy of the cookbook here. It’s been invaluable in our quest to become pizza masters ourselves.
Spinach and Artichoke Pizza Ingredients
This pizza is based on a classic recipe for spinach and artichoke dip. Here’s what we use to make our dip-inspired Spinach and Artichoke Neapolitan-Style Pizza:
- Olive oil
- Minced garlic
- Artichoke hearts
- Baby spinach leaves
- Black pepper
- Shredded mozzarella cheese
- Grated parmesan cheese
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Sea salt
Each ingredient in spinach and artichoke dip is equally important. It’s a pretty flavorful dip! You can clearly taste all the flavors of spinach, artichoke, mozzarella, parmesan, garlic – even the salt and black pepper come through well. So it was important that we balance these ingredients equally to replicate spinach and artichoke dip on a pizza.
Here’s how to make our Spinach and Artichoke Pizza recipe:
- Heat the olive oil in a skillet with garlic until fragrant, then add chopped artichokes and season with salt and pepper.
- Cook until artichokes are softened before adding in the spinach leaves, then heat until spinach just begins to wilt (it’ll finish cooking on the pizza). Season cooked toppings again with salt and pepper and remove from heat.
- To assemble the pizza, top Neapolitan-style dough with a blend of mozzarella and parmesan cheese. Add cooked spinach and artichoke topping, then drizzle lightly with olive oil for some moisture and finish with sea salt and additional grated parmesan.
- Bake the pizza using the cast iron home oven method outlined above
The result is a unique, well-balanced pizza that tastes like spinach and artichoke dip on a soft and doughy Neapolitan crust. Yum!
Spinach and Artichoke Pizza Modifications
If you have a preferred cooking method for at-home pizza, you can try making this pizza any number of ways – but be mindful of the type of dough you choose. A useful bit of knowledge we learned from Mastering Pizza is that different types of dough with varying hydration levels lend themselves to particular cooking methods. So certain store-bought doughs might not cook as well using the cast iron method outlined in this recipe. Likewise, if you want to make the exact dough we did, it may not yield the same results if you cook it on a grill or in a brick oven.
The key to good pizza is the right combination of dough type and cooking method – plus the quality and creativity of the toppings! That’s why we love coming up with inventive recipes like this spinach and artichoke dip pizza for our Pizza of the Month series.
If you do experiment with any of our pizzas, including our Spinach and Artichoke dip pizza recipe below, let us know how it goes. We’d love to see what you create! Tag us on Instagram @candidcooksblog and #thecandidcooks and we’ll even feature you on our stories.
Spinach and Artichoke Neapolitan-Style Pizza
- Cast iron griddle round
- 270 g Neapolitan-style dough ball at 60% hydration room temperature
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil plus extra for drizzling
- ½ tbsp minced garlic
- ½ cup artichoke hearts chopped
- 1 cup baby spinach leaves packed
- 2 pinches salt
- 2 pinches black pepper
- ⅔ cup mozzarella cheese shredded
- ⅓ cup grated parmesan cheese plus extra for finishing
- 1 pinch sea salt for finishing
- Preheat oven to its hottest temperature (typically around 500 to 550 degrees F).
- Flour a clean work surface and stretch the dough into a roughly 10-inch circle. Start by flattening it into a disc and gently pressing around the edges to form a small edge, then use two hands underneath the dough to stretch it from the center outwards. You can use two fists to gently coax it into shape, with your hands at a slight angle to let gravity help you.
- Next, prepare the toppings. Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat, then add minced garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds to 1 minute. Add chopped artichokes, season with a pinch of salt and pepper, and cook until softened, about 3 to 4 minutes. Then add spinach and cook until it just begins to wilt, about 2 to 3 minutes. Season with another pinch of salt and pepper and remove from heat.*
- In a small bowl, combine shredded mozzarella and grated parmesan cheese until evenly mixed. Set aside.
- Once the oven is preheated and your toppings and dough are ready, open the oven slightly to let some heat escape and switch on the broiler to HIGH. Close the oven door. Then, preheat a cast iron pan on the stove over medium-high heat for about 5 to 10 minutes.*
- Transfer the stretched dough to the hot cast iron and turn the heat to low while you quickly top the pizza. Top first with cheese, leaving about a quarter-inch crust, then evenly distribute the spinach and artichoke topping. Lightly drizzle the pizza with olive oil and then sprinkle with grated parmesan and sea salt.
- Transfer the pizza to the oven and cook under the broiler for about 2 to 4 minutes, or until crust is golden brown and cheese is bubbly. You may want to rotate the pan halfway through cooking to ensure it cooks evenly.
- Transfer cooked pizza to a cooling rack and allow to cool for at least 2 minutes before transferring to a cutting board. Slice and serve hot.