This Easy White Spinach Pizza is made with creamy ricotta, spinach, Italian herbs, and a mixture of mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses to capture the classic Florentine flavor in pizza form.
What is Pizza Florentine?
Florentine style of cooking simply refers to a recipe that is prepared in the style of the Italian region of Florence. Florentine dishes, like my recipe for Chicken Florentine, most commonly feature spinach and a rich creamy sauce.
Pizza Florentine is a pizza with spinach and a creamy white base.
This Spinach Pizza has a tender crust, topped with garlic-infused olive oil, and a mix of creamy ricotta, spinach, and herbs. And then finished with sharp Parmesan cheese and mozzarella. It remains me a lot of a white pizza, with a few veggies thrown in for good measure😉
why you will love this spinach pizza
- Incredibly Delicious. From the tender crust that is infused with garlic to the creamy, spiced spinach ricotta mixture, to the gooey cheese, this Spinach Pizza is downright dreamy.
- Unique Spin on Pizza. Instead of being made with pizza sauce and mozzarella cheese, Pizza Florentine is made with a creamy ricotta base and then smothered in cheese to create a cheesy, garlicky pizza that is irresistibly delicious.
- Kid-Friendly. While I absolutely love spinach in any way shape or form, most kids may be a bit more skeptical to give recipes featuring spinach a try. But serve it up on pizza, and you may be shocked to watch your kids devour this green veggie!
Notes On Ingredients
- Pizza Dough: While I like to start with my homemade pizza dough, you can certainly use your favorite store-bought pizza dough.
- Ricotta Cheese: Use either whole milk or reduced-fat ricotta can be used for the base of this white pizza.
- Spinach: Use defrosted, frozen chopped spinach for best results.
- Mozzarella & Parmesan Cheese: It is best to grate the cheese yourself, rather than using bagged grated cheese, as they are often coated in anti-caking agents and will not melt as smoothly.
- Red Pepper Flakes: Feel free to cut out the red pepper flakes for less heat in this pizza or add more if your family likes spice.
- Garlic Oil: Extra virgin olive oil and minced garlic are combined and brushed over the crust to add flavor to this spinach pizza. If you don't care for a strong undertone of garlic, you can season the oil with ½ teaspoon of garlic powder, which is less overwhelming than minced garlic.
∗ Tips for the Best Spinach Pizza ∗
While this recipe is super easy to prepare, and you can find the step-by-step directions in the recipe card, I want to share a few tips that will help ensure you have the absolute best results.
- Roll out the Pizza Dough Evenly. This will ensure that the pizza bakes evenly and every bite is perfectly in proportion.
- Season the Crust. Because this pizza is made without pizza sauce, we want to take the opportunity to infuse flavor into the crust and the best way to do that is by brushing the crust with olive oil that has been mixed with minced garlic. This will add a nice flavor to the pizza and help prevent the crust from becoming soggy.
- Squeeze the Spinach Dry. Before adding the spinach to the ricotta it is absolutely crucial that you remove all the excess moisture from the spinach to prevent a soggy pizza and watered-down Florentine topping. I recommend, placing the defrosted spinach in a clean kitchen towel or piece of cheesecloth and squeezing out all the excess moisture.
- Preheat the Oven. Make sure your oven is fully preheated to the right temperature before baking the pizza. This helps to ensure the pizza cooks evenly. If you were to pop your pizza into the oven before it is fully preheated, your cheese would brown before the crust would be fully cooked.
- Let the Pizza Cool Before Slicing. After removing the pizza from the oven, let it cool for 10 minutes before slicing it into wedges, as this allows the cheese to set and prevents the spinach topping from sliding off.
FAQs on Spinach Pizza
My favorite way to squeeze the spinach dry is to place the thawed spinach in a clean kitchen towel and squeeze it over the sink. Then simply wash the towel. This works MUCH better than using a paper towel.
Yes! But in order to prevent your pizza from becoming soggy, you must first saute the spinach and then squeeze out any excess liquid.
If you don't have ricotta, you can drain cottage cheese over a fine mesh strainer overnight and use that in place of ricotta. I recommend, pulsing the strained cottage cheese in a food processor briefly before mixing together the pizza topping. This will give the cottage cheese a better texture for the pizza.
No, but it does help add flavor and prevent the crust from becoming soggy, so I highly recommend it.
Because this pizza crust is brushed with olive oil and baked at a high temperature, it will brown and become crispy. If you would like a softer crust, brush the dough with olive oil, leaving a 1 to 2-inch border along the edges, and bake at 400 degrees F, until the cheese is melted.
More Easy Italian-American Favorites
These Italian recipes are a bit Americanized, just like Pizza Florentine, they are absolutely delicious.
If you tried this recipe for Spinach Pizza, I would love for you to leave a comment and review below.
For the Pizza:
- cooking spray
- 1 pound pizza dough
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon fresh minced garlic or ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ cup frozen chopped spinach defrosted, and drained well
- ½ cup ricotta cheese
- ¼ cup Parmesan cheese freshly grated
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- ⅛ teaspooon red pepper flakes optional
- 2-3 cups mozzarella cheese shredded
For Pizza Dough
- Combine the water and yeast and let sit for about 5 minutes in a large mixing bowl (or bowl of your stand mixer with dough hook attached.)
- Mix in the honey and oil. Add the flour and salt slowly and mix in as you go. With dough hook or large spatula mix together dough until well combined.
- Once mixed, knead for 5 minutes by hand on a lightly floured surface or with your dough hook on low-medium speed.
- Place dough in an oiled bowl and cover and leave in a warm spot for 20-30 minutes to let the dough rise until about doubled.
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Spray a 12-inch pizza pan with cooking spray or brush with oil.
- On a lightly floured surface, roll the pizza dough out into a 12-inch circle, about ¼-inch thick. Carefully transfer the dough to the prepared pan. Alternatively, you can roll the dough out directly onto the lightly greased pizza pan.
- In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, salt, and minced garlic. Using a pastry brush, evenly spread this mixture over the dough.
- Place the defrosted spinach into a clean lint-free kitchen towel and squeeze out the excess water over a bowl or sink.
- Place the drained spinach into a large mixing bowl. Add the ricotta, oregano, parmesan, and red pepper flakes to the spinach and mix well to combine. Spread this mixture evenly over the seasoned pizza dough. Top with mozzarella cheese.
- Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and golden. Allow the pizza to cool for 5-10 minutes before slicing and serving.
- 12-inch pizza pan or pizza stone