Vegetable Toppings

Although vegetable toppings are not ordered nearly as often as meat toppings, all pizzeria operators need to have a healthy selection of veggies on hand.  Veggies not only add a unique taste and texture when paired with meat toppings, they can also create a bold menu addition for those looking for a healthier or vegetarian option.

A recent poll by the National Restaurant Association showed that 73 percent of consumers try and choose healthy options when out to eat.  Even if a healthy image goes against your restaurant concept, you will miss a valuable opportunity by not providing healthier options.

The most popular vegetable pizza topping right now is the mushroom, followed by green peppers, black olives, white onions, tomatoes, and pineapple (very popular in the Hispanic community).  Having even more options available is a plus although some vegetables require work to prepare.  Make sure you know exactly what goes on your veggie pizza or have several different vegetable combinations on hand.  Try this veggie combo: basil, zucchini, bell peppers, onions, olives, garlic, mushrooms, sliced roma tomatoes.  Topped with a sprinkle of parmesan cheese, this veggie pizza is sure to be a hit.

When cooking with veggies you might see some unwanted moisture on top of your pie after cooking.  This release of water from veggies can lead to a gooey gum line, and will reduce cheese’s ability to stick to the pizza.  If you are experiencing this, try blanching/roasting your vegetables first, and putting them on top of the cheese to help evaporation.  Some vegetables don’t need to be fully pre-cooked, but exposing them to light before putting on a pizza is a good way to reduce the water release.  Blanching is also an opportunity to bring out the flavor of the veggies.  Try slow roasting red peppers, or sautéing broccoli in light oil which will help protect it on a pie.

And remember, vegetables not only add a unique taste and texture, but can also create a bold menu addition for those looking for a healthier or vegetarian option.

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