October is Pizza Month. Celebrate with something cold, creamy, and crunchy!
June 16 is Fresh Veggies Day. Use this recipe, pile on the veggies, and enjoy!
This popular appetizer recipe has been around for a long time and this weekend, finally, I decided to try it after I saw my friend Sam's article about it on his recipe blog, Sam's Place. He calls it Sam's Veggie Bars; I call mine Cold Veggie Pizza. It's designed to be an appetizer or party food; I served it last night as a side dish with dinner then today ate it by itself for lunch. My conclusion? Call it what you want and eat it whenever the mood strikes you, just try it soon because it's pretty, crunchy, easy, and delicious.
Sam's recipe was for a crowd. Since I was cooking just for two, I halved it. Also, I had my favorite ranch dressing on hand so, instead of using the Hidden Valley mix plus mayonnaise and sour cream, I substituted the prepared dressing. As I suspected, it turned out perfect and tasted great.
I decided to use the food processor to chop most of the vegetables I used (carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, one green onion, and about 1/4 of a green pepper. Then I manually sliced a few black olives and a handful of little cherry tomatoes from my garden to put on top. Last night I left off the shredded cheese, but today I added it and I think I like it better with than without.
Sam's Veggie Bars recipe, party size, is here. My version is below, half the size of Sam's and with the prepared dressing. The vegetables I have listed here are what I used; substitute, add, or subtract as you and your family prefer.
Enjoy this recipe as an appetizer, for brunch, for lunch, or even as a side dish.
Cold Veggie Pizza Recipe
1 tube Pillsbury crescent rolls
1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened (I used reduced fat cream cheese)
2/3 cup Marzetti Classic Ranch Dressing, from the produce section (or substitute your favorite brand)
about 1/4 of a green (or yellow or red) bell pepper
1 green onion (include both the white and some of the green parts)
black olives, small or medium, sliced or quartered
cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
Fiesta Blend shredded cheese (or your favorite variety)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Open the crescent rolls tube. Unroll the rolls and press edges together in the middle of a baking sheet or pizza pan.
Bake in 350 degree oven for 10 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool.
Dice or chop the carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, bell pepper, and green onion, about 2 to 3 cups total. Slice the black olives and cherry tomatoes.
Put the softened cream cheese and the ranch dressing in a bowl. Using a mixer, mix together until well combined and nice and smooth. Spread the mixture over the cooled crescent roll crust.
Distribute the chopped or diced vegetables on top of the cream cheese/ranch mixture, pressing them down gently. Add the sliced vegetables and shredded cheese on top.
Cover the "pizza" with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator. Chill for at least a couple of hours before slicing and serving.
I really loaded ours down with veggies, so we used a fork when we ate them with dinner last night. Today for lunch, I just used my fingers and didn't mind one bit picking up the pieces that dropped. There's just something about eating food with your fingers that makes it taste even better, don't you think?
P.S. An Oxo pizza wheel comes in handy when it's time to serve your cold veggie pizza (or a traditional hot pizza). This is the pizza cutter I own, use, and recommend.