A very simple combination of baby spinach, Forestiere mushrooms, mascarpone cheese, and mozzarella makes this vegetarian spinach and mushroom pizza a tempting choice for a weeknight treat.
Vegetarian pizza recipes are rather difficult to nail if you are not a full-time vegetarian, particularly because of that feeling that something is missing. Anyone who has a meat-eater in the house asking, “but where’s the meat?” will relate.
So, to make that feeling go away, I play with flavours and sometimes I get them so right that I end up liking the vegetarian pizza toppings better than any meat or seafood pizza I have ever eaten.
This is the case with this mascarpone pizza, which only contains five ingredients on top of a very thin base. That crispy crust you see in the pics is homemade with the help of my trusty bread maker. So, there’s not too much work involved with this mushrooms pizza, which is exactly what I want to hear when I’m craving a treat on a busy day.
I like my white pizzas to be garlicky, so this one has minced garlic in the spinach and mushroom topping, but you can omit that if you’d like. Just a word of advice — you’d be missing out!
What do you need for this spinach and mushroom pizza?
I do like to keep it simple on pizzas because too many things on a thin crust and you’ll end up with a soggy bottom. That’s no way to eat pizza, so we’re keeping it light.
- Forestiere mushrooms — What are Forestiere mushrooms, you may ask? They are a variety that is very much similar to chestnut mushrooms, but they have a milder taste and they tend to keep their colour when you cook them. They’re a hybrid between closed cup and chestnut, if you will. In the UK, I have found them in Tesco, but they are probably available elsewhere too. If you can’t find them, some quality chestnut mushrooms would do just fine. You’ll need 250 g (3 1/3 cups) for two pizzas.
- Baby spinach — about 200 grams (6 cups) would be enough for two pizzas.
- Mascarpone cheese — this goes directly on the stretched dough and acts like a sauce. Don’t worry if it takes some acrobatics to spread it on the dough, because it will melt beautifully in the oven.
- Mozzarella balls — I used the ones from Galbani, cut in halves.
- Red onion (or shallot)
- Garlic (optional)
- Your preferred pizza dough (see the recipe card for mine)
And that’s all. I told you it was simple. With this spinach pizza recipe, you need to be careful to cook the spinach and mushrooms until there is very little liquid left.
Even if you think it’s too dry, trust me, it isn’t, so cook those veggies until they start to get brown and are almost sticking to the pan.
Skip this step, and you’ll end up with a soggy pizza with spinach and mushrooms, which, let’s be honest, no one wants.
If you liked this pizza with mascarpone cheese, have a look at some of my other recipes:
For the dough
- 160 ml (2/3 cup) water
- 235 g (2 cups) strong white flour
- 1 tbsp olive oil, extra virgin
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 tsp dry yeast
For the topping
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 250 g (3 1/3 cups) Forestiere mushrooms (or chestnut)
- 200 grams (6 cups) baby spinach
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 175 g (3/4 cup) mascarpone cheese
- 150 g (5.5 oz.) mozzarella mini balls, cut in half (or shredded mozzarella)
- Red onion
- Add all the ingredients in the bread maker in the order recommended and run the "dough" cycle. Some machines have a special "pizza" setting. If yours has it, use that instead.
- You can also make the dough by hand by adding all the dry ingredients in a bowl, mix them well, and gradually add the olive oil and water until you have a slightly sticky dough. Leave it to prove for 1 – 1 1/2 hours.
- In a cast iron or non-stick pan on medium heat, add 1 tbsp olive oil. Add the mushrooms and spinach, season with salt and pepper, and cook until the liquid evaporates. Add the minced garlic halfway through if using it.
- Pre-heat the oven at 180 degrees Celsius (350F).
- Roll the pizza dough to form two 28 cm (11-inch) pizzas and add the dough to the pizza trays.
- Spread the mascarpone cheese on the dough, careful not to tear it.
- Divide the spinach and mushroom mixture into two and spread evenly on the pizzas.
- Add the mozzarella, spreading it evenly on each pizza.
- Sprinkle the pizzas with fine slices of red onion.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the base is crisp and the mozzarella is melted and slightly golden.
The mascarpone is easier to spread on the dough if it's at room temperature.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 317Total Fat: 18gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 45mgSodium: 671mgCarbohydrates: 29gFiber: 2gSugar: 4gProtein: 10g
Nutritional information is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator.