pizza balls

pizza ball recipe

I like to make things from scratch whenever I can. It’s cheaper, tastes better, and I feel better knowing that my family is not ingesting all the unnecessary additives and chemicals present in a lot of the pre-made products. However, one thing I do not like to make is pizza dough. I know I know, it’s one of the easiest things to make but for some reason, I rather bake a cake from scratch than make a pizza dough. I can’t explain it. Maybe I like the complicated better than the simple.

In my quest to never make a pizza dough, I tried many different store-bought ones. My favorite one I found, so far, is the classic pizza dough from Wholefoods. Not the wholewheat, not the herbed. It’s easy to work with and has great texture. I try to eat healthy (most of the time) but one thing I cannot replace or substitute is the white flour in my pasta or pizza dough. In fact, I rather not eat any pasta or pizza than to eat one with the white flour substitution-wholewheat, quinoa, rice flour, chickpea flour, etc. I tried them all and they’re all nowhere close to the texture you get from the good ol’ (evil) plain white flour. Hey, everything in moderation, right?

We make pizza at home quite often. It’s cheap and easy to make. It’s one meal where my son actually prefers to make on his own (yay!). I always have pizza dough along with tomato sauce in the freezer for emergency meals. On this pizza night, I was in an experimental mood. I decided to make pizza balls instead of the regular pizza. My little one didn’t want to help with this meal. He was rather quite weary that I was not making his familiar flat pizza. Ah, don’t worry little one. Just trust your mommy 🙂

You need the same ingredients as you would for a traditional pizza-tomato sauce, cheese, salami and of course, pizza dough. I did add garlic powder but it would be equally delicious without it. After rolling and stuffing the little balls of dough, I put it in the oven, crossed my fingers and hoped for the best. The result was cheesy, ooey, gooey, garlicky flavors all rolled into a ball ready to be dunked into a hot vat of tomato sauce. My little guy even said it’s better than the regular pizza. The next morning he woke up asking for more pizza balls. I guess this recipe is a keeper.

Pizza Balls


1 ball fresh pizza dough

1/4 cup flour

2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded

9 slices salami, cut in half

1/4 cup cornmeal

2 tablespoon, butter, melted

garlic salt (optional)

parmesan cheese

1/4 cup parsley, chopped


pizza balls


Heat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly grease a baking dish. Sprinkle a cutting board with flour. Roll out pizza dough to about 1/4″ thick. Cut into about 2 x 2 squares or use 2″ round cookie cutter. One at a time, stretch out the dough and stuff with cheese (about 1 tablespoon) and salami (I used half a slice per roll). Pinch the edges together. Dip the pinched-side in cornmeal. Place pinched-side down in the baking dish. Repeat until all dough is used. Brush the tops of the rolls with melted butter. Sprinkle garlic powder, if using. Grate parmesan cheese on top. Bake for 30 minutes until golden brown. Sprinkle with chopped parsley. Serve right away with warm tomato sauce.

Yields 17 golf ball-sized rolls.

pizza balls

Tomato Sauce 

This is an easy recipe. Most people have their own version. And of course, you can use a store-bought sauce.


1 tablespoon olive oil

1 medium onion, small dice

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon red chili flakes

2-15oz can tomato sauce

1 1/2 cups water

8 whole basil leaves


One medium heat in a saucepan, sauté onion, garlic, chili flakes and salt until onion are translucent, about 4 minutes. Add tomato sauce, water and basil leaves. Once it comes to a boil, reduce the heat to low and simmer for 1 hr. Stir occasionally. Turn off heat.

Make about 4 cups.