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Quilted Pizza

Planning a kid's birthday party always seems like an easy feat 4 months before the big day. Then, before you know it, you're a few weeks out and actually have to come up with those new and fun ideas to keep everyone entertained. It can be daunting to say the least.

While I'm totally game for ordering a few pizzas and calling it a day, this Quilt Pizza is much more exciting, easy to make and a great way to get all your guests involved. It becomes an activity in and of itself.

First, get a ton—I mean a TON—of toppings: veggies, meats, even some pineapple if you like, and divide them between separate bowls. Next, buy a few packages of pre-made pizza dough from the grocery store or your local pizzeria and roll and stretch it to fit a sheet pan. Then place everything out on a table. ... And let the kids go crazy. Each child gets a square to design their own handmade patch of pizza. Once the pies are all baked up and bubbly, you won't believe how excited the kids will be to chow down on their personalized piece.

And you don't have to have a big party to enjoy this pizza. It easily scales down to accommodate smaller gatherings like slumber parties, get togethers or an intimate family dinner.

Sound like a plan?

Ingredients

1 pound pizza dough, brought to room temperature

1/2 cup pizza sauce

2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded

1 small red onion, thinly sliced

1 cup broccoli florets, steamed

1/2 cup pineapple, chopped

1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

1 red bell pepper, sliced

1/4 cup olives, sliced

1/2 cup mushrooms, sliced

4 strips bacon, cooked

1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes

1/2 cup spinach leaves

1/2 cup green onions, chopped

* These are just suggested toppings. feel free to come up with your own. the possibilities are endless.

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 425 F.

2. Lightly grease the backside of a half sheet pan with olive oil and stretch the dough to fit the size of the pan (about 16″ x 11″).

3. Spread 1/2 cup of sauce on the dough and sprinkle 2 cups of cheese on top.

4. “Decorate” the pizza using the topping ingredients. Divide into 8-12 squares to create a quilt.

5. Brush the edges with olive oil and bake for 18-20 minutes.

6. Serve.

Serves 8 to 12 depending on the size of each square

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