- 1 Can Pizza Dough Pillsbury or Other Brand (or make your own)
- 1 Can Tomato Paste
- 1 Teaspoon Dried Oregano
- Mozzarella Cheese
- Other Toppings Optional
- 5 Leaves Fresh Basil
- Open the pizza dough
- Spread dough into the slow cooker
- Add your sauce, oregano, pepperoni, and cheese
- Cook on LOW for 2+ hours, or until dough thoroughly cooks (it will depend on the size of your slow cooker)
- Top with fresh basil
- Cut and serve
The recipe for this slow cooker pizza from Pillsbury was really interesting. First, it's stupidly simple, but I guess a basic pizza recipe where the dough is already done is going to be simple anyway. It's just dough, pepperoni, cheese, sauce, and herbs.
The first question you should ask, is that is a slow cooker going to make creating this recipe easier or more difficult? Well, according to what I experienced, probably not. But let's take a look at what went wrong, what went right, and how you can make a slow cooker pizza work for you.
My first possible mistake is that I was using a large slow cooker. I thought that using too small of a slow cooker would cause the dough to be thick. Turns out, this was too large of a vessel and the dough didn't stretch across the whole cooker! I had to roll and fight the dough to get it to mold to the shape of the crock Edit: Actually, it turns out I didn't open the dough correctly. There's a clear line where you can unroll the dough and it will be flat.
From there, all I did was cover in pizza sauce, pepperoni, oregano, and cheese as I normally would. I did put basil fresh on top, but that was another mistake. You can see from the photo that after a coupe hours of cooking it looked wilted and did not have the fresh herb flavor I was looking for. Save your fresh herbs for last!
The main issue with the pizza was that it didn't cook properly. The cheese was melted and the crust was done on the outside, but near the middle of the pizza was still quite doughy. It was done enough that I could have probably eaten it, but I wanted to see if I could finish cooking it properly – to see if I should make it again. So after the original 2 hours cooking on low, I cooked it another hour…then another hour. Total 4 hours on low. The dough was defnitiely done by then, but tasted quite dry around the edges.
So it wasn't evenly baked, and it was a pretty plain pizza. This turned out to be more of a kids food.
Why should you learn how to make a slow cooker pizza? Well, slow cooking means you can leave the house. So you could potentially put a pizza cooking, go shopping with the kids, and come home to a nice snack. If your oven is occupied with something else, you could also make this on the side if you are having a nice pot roast for the adults and have some picky kids that want to have pizza night. It could also be a fun pizza night for the kids where they can make their own pies!
I know all these ideas are revolving around kids eating this pizza…just because I can't imagine myself making it and enjoying it LOL. It was cheap enough to experiment with though, so I'll probably try again. I'll try the high setting, and also try to properly unfold the dough. I might also try cooking the dough by itself, then adding toppings later and just slow cooking the toppings for an hour.
The slow cooker I used for this recipe was the Crock Pot 7 quart manual. It would have been more convenient to use the programmable version in the case of the slow cooker pizza though, so I could set it and forget about it (have it automatically switch to warm). However, the manual version is cheaper, so for anyone on a budget needing a large slow cooker, you can't beat the reliability of the Crock-Pot brand.