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Posted:  |  Updated: 08/31/12 10:48 AM ET

10-Minute Pizza Toppings (Photos)

When you run out of time for dinner, pizza is a great option. It tastes good, is a crowd-pleaser and is nice on your wallet. And while it can be quite a production if you make everything from scratch, you can have a pretty amazing pie ready in no time with some helpful time-saving tips. And no one will be the wiser.

The first step to skip is making your own dough. Yes, it's a pleasure to make from scratch, and there's definitely an art form to be respected and cherished; but really, who has the time for that? A great source for pizza dough is your local mom 'n pop pizza shop. Often times, they're willing to sell you a ball of freshly made dough for just a couple of dollars. If that's not an option in your area, some supermarkets will carry pizza dough. And if you can't find the dough, they'll at least have the pre-made crust.

Once the dough is taken care of, you've won half the battle. Now all you have to do when you walk in the door is preheat the oven and -- while the oven is heating -- prepare your pizza toppings. The toppings are what really set one pizza apart from the rest. And if you choose wisely, you can minimize the prep time to just a matter of minutes. From the beloved Hawaiian pizza to some more adventurous creations, click through the slideshow below for some homemade pizza inspiration.

How do you like your pizza? Leave a comment.

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  • Pesto And Fresh Veggies

    Swapping pesto for the more traditional pizza sauce makes for a tasty and refreshing pizza. And you can easily use store-bought pesto since you're just baking it. Adding fresh veggies such as zucchini, yellow squash, tomato and mushrooms is a great way to feel good about having pizza for dinner. The only work required to enjoy this pie is slicing the veggies.

  • Sweet Potato And Red Onion

    This recipe is a great one to turn to when you have leftover sweet potato or winter squash. Once that root veggie is cooked all you have to do is mash it up and spread it on the dough. Top with some thinly sliced red onion and sharp cheese like gruyere to balance out the sweetness of the root veggies.

  • Mozzarella, Prosciutto And Arugula

    If you're craving a traditional Italian pizza, this combination is one that you can find in all the restaurants -- and it takes just minutes to put together. A light tomato sauce (or even just a can of diced tomatoes) tops the dough and is then baked with mozzarella and prosciutto slices. Once the pie is ready, top with fresh arugula -- it really livens up the flavors.

  • Tapenade, Sun-Dried Tomatoes And Feta

    Italian meets Greek in this unique pizza combo. If you're getting tired of the same old flavors, this pie is just what you need. Use the tapenade in place of tomato sauce (just a very thin layer) top with chopped sun-dried tomatoes and crumbled feta. The feta won't really melt in the oven, but it'll get warm and deliciously soft.

  • The Hawaiian: Pineapple And Ham

    The Hawaiian pizza has been around for a long time, but it's one of those combinations that often gets forgotten about. It takes just a moment to put together, especially if you use canned pineapples. If you want to give it a new twist, replace the tomato sauce with barbecue sauce. Just keep in mind that a little bit will go a long way.

  • Sausage And Eggs

    Who doesn't love breakfast for dinner? And when you combine that treat with pizza, you'll make everyone happy. Use a generous helping of cheddar cheese as a base, top with cooked breakfast sausage and crack a few eggs right on top. The egg will cook along with the pizza. Feel free to add whatever extra you have on hand. We quite like it with scallions or chives.

  • Onion And Chorizo

    Chorizo is the secret ingredient in many dishes. It adds a depth of flavor and the best part is, it's already cooked. Slice it up and top it on a pizza with tomato sauce, thinly sliced onions and a mixture of Italian cheese for a hearty and savory dinner that will be on your table in no time.

  • Blue Cheese, Walnuts And Dried Cherries

    This is a pie like you've never had before. And while the combination may not sound enticing to everyone, take our word: it's out of this world. The pie is simple to throw together, just top with crumbled blue cheese, chopped walnuts and dried cherries. Once baked, drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. The pizza is a tad on the sweet side so serve with a savory salad.

  • Artichoke Hearts And Roasted Peppers

    It's amazing how many dinner options you can have if you keep your cupboard well stocked. A simple can of artichoke hearts and a jar of oil packed roasted red peppers, when combined on a pizza pie with tangy tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese, can make the most satisfying dinner -- in just a matter of minutes.

  • Fresh Spinach And Two Cheeses

    Often times when spinach is used, it's cooked down first. And while this is a tasty green, sometimes we just want to use it fresh. Tossing it atop a pizza -- one that has been loaded with parmesan, mozzarella and fresh tomato slices -- with just a drizzle of olive oil and lemon juice will keep the spinach leaves mostly fresh with some crisp edges and some softer spots. In other words, simply mouth-watering and delicious.

  • WATCH: How To Shape The Pizza Dough


Filed by Julie R. Thomson  |