Pizza Party!

When we discovered my daughter had food allergies I couldn’t help but mourn the loss of all the food she would miss out on. At the top of the list of long-lost foods was pizza. Well, I soon found out, it doesn’t have to be that way. This last weekend, we gathered with our family for a pizza party complete with an outdoor pizza oven. We tried out a few different pizza dough recipes, set out every topping under the sun, and made a ton of pizza. The results were – delicious! And the best part was EVERYONE being able to enjoy the amazing food – no one was left out.

A pizza party is the perfect meal for a gathering with people who have different food restrictions like vegetarians, vegans, those with food allergies or celiac disease – just watch out for cross contamination. Lots of cutting boards are the key!



For the dough – you can definitely buy it.  Just be careful about cross contamination from where you get it. I prefer to make my own. It only takes a few minutes to start and can be put into the refrigerator overnight or until you’re ready for up to a day or two. You can also freeze it into balls, then thaw overnight in the fridge.  If you can have gluten, my favorite pizza dough recipe is from Alice Waters. This dough never fails me.

Alice Water’s Pizza Dough

2 teaspoons dry yeast (about 1 packet)
1/2 cup lukewarm water
1/4 cup unbleached white flour
1/4 cup rye flour
3 1/4 cups unbleached white flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup olive oil
3/4 cup of cold water

  1. Make the sponge by disolving the yeast in the water and adding the 1/4 cup of white and rye flours. Mix well, and then let sit for about 30 minutes until it is bubbling.
  2. Mix together the flour and salt in a separate mixing bowl.
  3. Using a mixer with a dough hook if you have it is desired otherwise mix it by hand. Add the sponge, water and oil and run the machine for about 5 minutes or  knead about 5 minutes until the dough is soft and elastic. You want a “soft, slightly sticky” dough so add a little more flour if necessary, but not too much.
  4. Place the dough in an oiled large bowl and cover with a towel. Put in a warm place until the dough has doubled in size, or about 2 hours.
  5. If you are preparing this the night before, skip step 4 and put in the refrigerator in an oiled freezer bag or a bowl with a cover.
  6. Punch down the dough and divide into portions and let rest for another 30 minutes.
  7. Either roll out the dough balls to make a pizza, or you can store individually wrapped dough balls in the freezer. Just take them out and thaw in the refrigerator the night before.


For a gluten free option we made Bob Red Mill’s Gluten free Pizza Crust. As an egg replacer we used flax meal as they recommended. Just prepare according to their instructions.


For the toppings – all the standards were there: the sauce, the olives, the mushrooms, the cheese, the pepperoni – but some pies stood out among the others. There are no measurements on ingredients here as it depends on how much pizza you will be making.

Trent’s Mushroom & Shaved Asparagus
(ingredients in order of placement on the pizza and amounts to desired taste)
Parmasan or cheese substitute Daiya recommended
Mozzarella or cheese substitute Daiya recommended
Mushrooms – shitakes, oysters, or any other mushroom
Shaved asparagus seasoned with salt, pepper and truffle oil (pile this up on the pie)

Roasted Eggplant with Chèvre
(ingredients in order of placement on the pizza and amounts to desired taste)
Mozzarella or cheese substitute Daiya recommended
Roasted eggplant (roasting eggplant made ahead, recipe below)
Chevre in dollops all around the pie
Fresh oregano
Lemon zest

Roasted Eggplant is made by slicing your eggplant about 1/2 inch thick, and place in a colander and season with salt. Let sit for about 1/2 hour. Brushing with a little olive oil and pepper and put in the oven on a cookie sheet. About 20 minutes at 400° degrees will do the trick. Or you put them on the grill.

Chocolate Marshmallow Pizza
This was our version of a dessert pizza. The orange zest and black sea salt took this to another level. We used allergy friendly Enjoy Life Chocolate Chips and Dandies marshallows – they contain soy, but there are soy free alternatives out there. (ingredients in order of placement on the pizza and amounts to desired taste)
Chocolate chips
Orange zest
Hawaiian black sea salt

Autumn’s Fave
Olive oil
Course salt

Pizzas for those with food allergies where cross contamination is an issue should be made first or with separate equipment. Planning ahead with your host for all this will allow things to go smoothly.  Offer to bring your own toppings, crust and even cutting board and knife to accommodate food allergy separation. Those with high sensitivity to gluten will need to watch out for all the flour being flung around and perhaps cooking your pie in a different pan, oven or grill will be your best option.

Have fun, be safe and never let anyone tell you you can’t have fun at a party when you have food allergies!


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  • Reply
    September 7, 2011 at 10:29 am

    Pizza was lots of fun and very social. It was great to be able to enjoy pizza together. The fresh homemade humus and tzatzki sauce were perfect dipping sauces for the pizza “chips”

  • Reply
    Evelyn Easley
    September 8, 2011 at 10:40 pm

    I enjoy making my own pizza, got to pick what I like and load it with my favorite veggies<3<3<3. Love the "Trent’s Mushroom & Shaved Asparagus". Eating the pizza & share it with the family was the Best!!!

  • Reply
    September 9, 2011 at 6:38 pm

    I love that you cooked your pizza by a fire! I’d love to do that. We’re big pizza fans around here. I’ve never tried Alice Water’s recipe. I love the overnight sponge one I found in Bon Appetit as well as Peter Rheinhart’s. Pizza is fantastic. 🙂

    Congrats on being a September blog of the month on Jamie Oliver’s site! I’m glad I found you! 🙂

    • Reply
      September 11, 2011 at 3:49 pm

      Thanks Natalie! Congrats to you as well – you have a beautiful blog. That roasted vegetable pie looks so lovely. I’ll tune in often to see what’s cooking. Best, Lisa

      • Reply
        September 12, 2011 at 9:39 am

        Thank you! The feeling is mutual!

  • Reply
    September 11, 2011 at 2:53 pm

    We make pizza often and always use the Alice Waters recipe. It is so easy and always turns out great!

  • Reply
    Autumn's Lunchbox | Superbowl Pizza
    February 7, 2012 at 11:18 am

    […] To keep things allergy friendly, I made the dough.  It’s easily made the day before and kept in the refrigerator until 2 hours before your ready to shape it.  Each batch made 4 little pizzas.  I bake the pizzas at 500 degrees on a pizza stone set directly on the floor of my oven.  The sauce is my brother-in-law  Trent’s secret recipe and although I changed it a bit, I’ve sworn not to share it.  Any simple sauce will do.  We had different cheese options with and without dairy – our favorite “fake” cheese is Daiya.  See more of our take on pizza. […]

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