Pizza Rolls (easy to make)

Pizza Rolls on parchment

Pizza Rolls are a handheld bites filled with cheese and all of your favorite pizza toppings!

A simple pizza dough roll with loads of pepperoni and cheese are to bubbly perfection in about 30 minutes.

Pizza Rolls on parchment paper, with a bite taken out of one.

Bite Sized Pizzas

Prepacked or made ahead pizza dough makes this easy recipe not only fun to make, but great for kids to learn basic cooking skills and have fun at the same time!

Choose your favorite pizza toppings or let the kids add their own!

These Pizza Rolls make for a yummy snack, appetizer, lunch or dinner! They’re a great freeze-ahead meal, perfect for busy weeknights.

Pizza dough rolled out and spread with pizza sauce.


DOUGH For this recipe, I use pizza dough but any kind of dough will work. If you have a can of crescent rolls, use those!

SAUCE Top your dough with pizza sauce, tomato sauce, marinara sauce or try making a homemade pizza sauce!

TOPPINGS Anything that goes on a regular pizza can go into a pizza roll! If using veggies that contain a lot of water (like mushrooms) be sure to cook them first and drain well.

Meat: I love pepperoni as a topping, but bacon, Italian sausage or shredded chicken will taste great too.

Veggies: While I didn’t add any veggies, fresh peppers, mushrooms or jalapenos would taste delicious!

Cheese: Mozza and Parmesan are my favorites, but try cheddar, Monterey jack or pepper jack for a fun twist.

How to Roll Out Pizza Dough

  • For pizza dough: gently remove from the container and roll it out flat. Use a little flour to keep the dough from sticking to the work surface or hands.
  • For crescent rolls: squeeze together the perforated edges to make one large square, and roll out to about a 16” by 14” inch square.

Pizza dough rolled out & spread with sauce, topped with mozza cheese and pepperoni.

How to Make Pizza Rolls

For delicious, homemade pizza roll perfection:

  1. Roll out dough, spread with sauce, and add toppings.
  2. Roll up from one end to the other, then slice into 12 rolls.
  3. Place in greased muffin tins and sprinkle with cheese then bake per recipe below.

Serve with remaining pizza sauce for dipping!

Pizza Rolls in a muffin tin topped with mozza cheese.

How to Store Pizza Rolls

Keep cooled pizza rolls in a zippered bag in the refrigerator until they are ready to be reheated again. Reheat in the microwave with a fresh sprinkle of cheese. Don’t forget to heat up the pizza sauce!

Or freeze (like pizza pockets) in an airtight container, and take for lunches or a quick snack!

Pizza Rolls on parchment paper, with a side of pizza sauce in a white bowl.

Yummy Pizza-Inspired Recipes

Did you love these homemade Pizza Rolls? Be sure to leave a rating and a comment below! 

Pizza Rolls on parchment

Pizza Rolls

These Pizza Rolls are filled with your favorite pizza toppings.
Course Appetizer, Lunch, Main Course, Snack
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Cool Time 5 minutes
Total Time 32 minutes
Servings 12 rolls
Calories 193
Author Holly Nilsson


  • 1 lb pizza dogh or 1 can refrigerated pizza dough
  • 1 cup pizza sauce divided
  • 2 teaspoon fresh parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese shredded
  • 1/3 cup parmesan cheese grated
  • 2/3 cup mini pepperoni or chopped pepperoni


  • 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese grated
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • fresh parsley for garnish


  • Preheat oven to 400°F.
  • Roll pizza dough out to approximately a 16" x 14" square
  • Combine garlic powder and parsley with 1/2 cup of pizza sauce and spread over the dough. Top with mozzarella, parmesan cheese, and mini pepperoni. Roll dough cinnamon roll style.
  • Cut into 12 slices and place in greased muffin tins.
  • Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and bake for 12-14 minutes.
  • Cool 5 minutes and serve with remaining pizza sauce for dipping!


  • Use premade pizza dough, crescent rolls or homemade pizza dough.
  • Pizza sauce, tomato sauce or even marinara sauce work great.
  • Toppings: Try bacon, fresh peppers or even pineapple and don't forget your favorite cheese. If your toppings have a lot of moisture (like mushrooms) be sure to cook them first.


Calories: 193 | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 20mg | Sodium: 599mg | Potassium: 96mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 211IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 117mg | Iron: 1mg
Pizza rolls on parchment paper with sauce with writing
Pizza rolls with tomatoes sauce and writing
Pizza rolls with writing
Pizza Rolls no parchment paper with writing

Fusilli with Meat Sauce (Quick & Easy!)

Fusilli with meat sauce in a pan garnished with parsley.

Fusilli with meat sauce is the perfect one-pot meal.

Tender pasta (fusilli in this case) is simmered in a simple meat sauce. A few additions take a pantry staple from ordinary to delicious!

Fusilli with meat sauce in a pan garnished with parsley.

Why We Love This Recipe

Quick When you’re short on time this easy pasta dish is the perfect recipe, it’s ready in about 30 minutes.

Easy This recipe transforms a jar of pasta sauce to make it taste homemade with a few simple additions (of course you can skip the jarred pasta sauce and start with homemade marinara if you prefer).

Yummy It’s a family-pleasing kind of meal, everyone loves this easy version of a meat sauce and there are never complaints at the dinner table!

Meat sauce in a pan with parsley and a jar of fusilli pasta


FUSILLI The twists and twirls of fusilli capture the sauce for the perfect bite.

Use any medium pasta; penne, rotini, bowties or even cheese tortellini! Or use up any leftover cooked pasta in your fridge.

Fusilli with Meat Sauce in a pan topped with grated parmesan cheese and parsley.

SAUCE This uses jarred sauce as a shortcut! A splash of red wine, some onion, garlic and seasonings make it taste homemade!

Variations: You can substitute the ground beef for any ground meat you have on hand. Try using ground chicken, pork, or Italian sausage.

Out of red wine? Substitute in beef broth (if using ground chicken) and mix with marinara sauce or any tomato sauce that’s already in your pantry.

No Pasta Sauce? Use tomato sauce and a spoonful of tomato paste with a dash of garlic powder and onion powder (and a teaspoon of sugar if needed).

CHEESE No pasta is complete without a sprinkle of cheese! For this recipe,  I enjoy mozzarella and parmesan but you can use any cheese you have on hand. Try pepper jack for a little spice or try cheddar cheese.

Meat Sauce in a frying pan topped with parsley

How to Make Fusilli with Meat Sauce

  1. Brown the beef and onion, drain the fat.
  2. Add red wine and simmer. Add remaining ingredients
  3. Meanwhile, cook pasta until al dente, don’t drain!
  4. Stir it all together until hot and sprinkle with some parm!

Serve topped with cheese and a side of homemade garlic bread to sop up all the juicy meat sauce!

A serving spoon of fusilli with meat sauce topped with parmesan cheese

Tips for Perfect Pasta Every Time

  • Since the pasta is simmered in the sauce, cook only until al dente so that it doesn’t overcook and become too soft.
  • When cooking pasta, use generously salted water. There is no need to add oil to the water as it will just float to the top.
  • Do not rinse the pasta once cooked, the starches help the sauce cling. Save a little bit of the drained pasta water to thin out your sauce if needed.
  • Keep leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Just stir, reheat, and top with a little extra cheese before serving!

Easy Pasta Dishes

Did you enjoy this easy Fusilli with Meat Sauce?  Be sure to leave a rating and a comment below!

Fusilli with meat sauce in a pan garnished with parsley.

Fusilli with Meat Sauce

Pasta noodles are tossed in a rich tomato sauce for a family favorite all year long!
Course Main Course, Pasta
Cuisine American
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 27 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 554
Author Holly Nilsson


  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 small onion diced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/4 cup red wine or beef broth
  • 24 ounces marinara sauce or pasta sauce
  • 8 ounces fusilli or medium pasta
  • 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese shredded
  • 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese grated


  • Brown beef, onion, and garlic in a deep skillet over medium-high heat until no pink remains. Drain fat.
  • While the beef is browning, cook pasta in salted water just until al dente. Drain but do not rinse.
  • Stir in red wine and Italian sesoning. Simmer until it evaporates about 3 minutes. Add sauce and simmer a few minutes more. Stir in cooked pasta and simmer an additional 2-3 minutes or until heated through.
  • Top with cheeses and serve.


For this recipe we use fusilii, but any pasta will do. Try penne, rotini, or bowtie pasta.
Cook pasta noodles just to al dente as they continue to cook when simmered with the meat sauce. 
Ground beef can be substituted for ground chicken, pork, or Italian sausage.
No Red Wine? Substitute a splash of beef broth.
No Pasta Sauce? Use tomato sauce and a spoonful of tomato paste with a dash of garlic powder and onion powder (and a teaspoon of sugar if needed).


Calories: 554 | Carbohydrates: 55g | Protein: 33g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 84mg | Sodium: 1055mg | Potassium: 1090mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 803IU | Vitamin C: 14mg | Calcium: 122mg | Iron: 5mg

Cheese Tortellini {with tomato sauce}

Cheese Tortellini is tossed in a quick homemade tomato sauce for an easy weeknight meal!

The sauce is made from pantry staples plus a heavy dose of garlic and simmered with a cheese tortellini pasta. Serve with a fresh salad and crusty bread.

Cheese tortellini with tomato sauce in a white serving bowl with a fork.



Why We Love This Recipe

Everyone loves a good hearty pasta. It’s hard to believe that the simple ingredients in this cheese tortellini recipe create so much flavor.

  • It’s Quick Any meal that can be on the table in 30 minutes or less is a win in our books!
  • Serve as a Side or Main Dish This makes a nice side with grilled chicken or double the recipe to main a meatless main dish.
  • Fresh Flavor This uses canned tomatoes but has a delicious fresh tomato flavor. If you have fresh herbs, sprinkle them on just before serving.
  • Simple Ingredients The easy sauce is made with items I always have on hand meaning this is a go-to any day of the week!

Overview of ingredients for Garlic Tomato Tortellini in a frying pan.


TORTELLINI Cheese tortellini can be replaced with meat filled tortellini or any filled pasta. Fresh or frozen ravioli works well too.

CANNED TOMATOES Canned diced tomatoes make this recipe quick and easy. Whole tomatoes are a good replacement, get messy and squish them up with your hands before adding to the pan.

ONION & GARLIC If you’ve run out of onion or garlic, you can still go ahead with this recipe! Cook up a bit of celery (or carrot) to start and add in either garlic or onion powder or even dried onion flakes if you have some.

How To Make Cheese Tortellini

It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3 to make this amazing tasting pasta skillet!

  1. Cook the tortellini per package directions, drain and set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, saute onion and garlic with spices. Add remaining ingredients and bring to a boil.
  3. Let the sauce thicken then add tortellini.

Top with parmesan cheese and parsley and serve immediately.


Cheese tortellini on top of homemade tomato sauce in a pan

Other Delicious Additions

A tortellini pasta skillet screams for veggies, doesn’t it? This pasta is a great way to use up all kinds of leftovers!

Here are some great add-ins that make this hearty dish even heartier!

Cheese tortellini with tomato sauce in a pan

What to Serve with Tomato Tortellini Pasta

Serve cheese tortellini like any hearty pasta skillet, it goes well with salad and bread.

Salad Ceasar salad or tossed salad with a simple vinaigrette.

Bread Fresh bread is the perfect way to sop up the juicy sauce in this recipe! Try french bread, dinner rolls or homemade garlic bread.

Overview of Garlic Tomato Tortellini in a white serving bowl with a fork.

Leftover Tortellini?

Leftover tortellini pasta reheats well in the fridge. Keep it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Tasty Pasta Skillets


Garlic Tomato Tortellini

This easy pasta skillet is an easy side or even main dish!
Course Main Course, Pasta
Cuisine American, Italian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4 side dish servings
Calories 273
Author Holly Nilsson


  • 9 oz cheese tortellini
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil divided
  • 1/2 cup onion diced
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 14 oz canned diced tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 cup chicken broth
  • parmesan cheese, basil and parsley for garnish optional


  • Cook onion in 1 tablespoon olive oil until tender. Add garlic, basil, and oregano and stir until fragrant.
  • Add tomatoes with juices, water, and sugar and use a spoon to slightly smash the tomatoes.
  • Bring to a boil, reduce heat to simmer. Allow sauce to simmer and thicken while cooking the tortellini, about 10 minutes. Stir in remaining olive oil.
  • Cook tortellini al dente according to package directions. Drain but do not rinse.
  • Gently mix cooked tortellini with prepared tomato sauce. Top with parmesan cheese and fresh parsley or basil and serve.


SERVING SIZE This recipe makes four 1 cup servings. If serving as a main dish, I would suggest doubling the recipe for 4 people.
Any filled pasta will work well in this recipe (meat filled tortellini or ravioli).
Cooked ground beef or sausage can be added to the sauce as it simmers.
If you have fresh herbs such as basil or parsley, sprinkle them on just before serving.


Calories: 273 | Carbohydrates: 33g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 22mg | Sodium: 444mg | Potassium: 240mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 116IU | Vitamin C: 13mg | Calcium: 128mg | Iron: 3mg
A serving of garlic tomato tortellini
A serving of tortellini pasta topped with a homemade garlic tomato sauce.
Top image - a serving of tomato tortellini. Bottom image - tortellini being stirred into the homemade tomato sauce.

Reuben Pizza (easy to make)

Reuben Pizza, an easy and delicious main course or snack that will satisfy any hungry family. This family-friendly mashup combines all the meaty, cheesy and tangy flavors of a Reuben sandwich along with the convenience of pizza. 

Serve with creamy coleslaw or potato salad for a quick and casual lunch or dinner.

Overhead image of Reuben Pizza with a piece cut out.

Thin or Thick Crust?

Reuben pizza dough can be made from either homemade pizza dough, a pre-made crust from the store, or canned pizza dough.

Whether you roll it out thin or thick is a matter of personal preference; either will deliver delicious taste.

Overhead Image of ingredients for Reuben Pizza.

How To Make Reuben Pizza

The best Reuben pizza is made from the same tasty ingredients as the classic grilled sandwich. And it comes together in no time flat with these simple steps.

  1. Spread dough with thousand island dressing or russian dressing.
  2. Top with meat, cheese, and sauerkraut (per recipe below).
  3. Bake until dough is lightly brown at edges and cheese is melted.

Top with sliced pickles and serve!

Image of Reuben Pizza before being baked.

More Delicious Toppings for Reuben Pizza

Serve Reuben pizza with some extra thousand island dressing for dipping. Or add even more taste and texture with some of these tasty toppings.

  • Flavor: sliced black olives, Rotel, salsa, pizza sauce, or toasted caraway seeds.
  • Crunchy: sweet or dill pickle slices, diced onions, or chopped bell pepper.
  • Cheeses: shredded Swiss, cheddar, or Monterey Jack.

Overview of Reuben Pizza with a piece cut out.

How to Reheat Pizza

Leftovers can be wrapped in plastic or foil and stored in the fridge for up to four days.

The ingredients used in Reuben pizza are not appropriate for the freezer. However, reheat in the oven to restore crispness to the dough.

Tasty Reuben Inspired Recipes

Easy, satisfying and fun Reuben pizza will hit the spot every time!


Reuben Pizza

This Reuben Pizza is a fun, creative twist on the classic sandwich!
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword reuben pizza
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 17 minutes
Servings 8 slices
Calories 326
Author Holly Nilsson


  • 1 prebaked pizza crust 12"
  • 1/2 cup Thousand Island Dressing
  • 1/4 lb deli corned beef sliced into strips
  • 14 ounces sauerkraut rinsed and squeezed out
  • 1 cup swiss cheese shredded
  • 1 cup mozzarella shredded
  • 1/4 teaspoon caraway seeds optional
  • 2 pickles sliced


  • Preheat oven to 400°F.
  • Spread thousand island dressing on pizza crust.
  • Top with corned beef, sauerkraut, cheese, and caraway seeds (optional).
  • Baked for 12-15 minutes, or until cheese is melted.
  • Top with sliced pickles and serve!


Serving: 1slice | Calories: 326 | Carbohydrates: 30g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 35mg | Sodium: 1154mg | Potassium: 179mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 278IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 247mg | Iron: 3mg
close up of a slice of Reuben Pizza.
Close up of a slice of reuben pizza topped with pickles.
Close up of a slice of reuben pizza topped with pickles.

Chicken Pasta Bake (one pot)

Creamy Chicken Pasta is a great weeknight meal. Made with tomatoes, cream, cooked chicken, and pasta baked with cheese it is the best one-pot meal! 

Whether you’re cooking for your family or for a crowd, this one-pot entrée will be on your menu rotation for a long time to come!

Overhead image of Creamy Tomato Chicken Pasta Skillet in a pot with a spoon.

How to Make Chicken Pasta Skillet

This one-pot meal is as easy as can be and just one pot needed!

        1. Add uncooked pasta, canned tomatoes and water to a pot.
        2. Simmer until pasta is tender (al dente).

      Overhead of ingredients for Creamy Tomato Chicken Pasta Skillet.

        1. Stir in chicken, seasonings, and cream.
        2. Mix and bake until the cheese is melted and the pasta is tender.

      Serve immediately with a slice of garlic toast to soak up every last cheesy bite.

      Cream being poured over other ingredients for Creamy Tomato Chicken Pasta Skillet.

      Serve with…

      Even though this creamy tomato chicken pasta skillet could be a meal in itself, it’s great paired with with favorite sides.

      Salads: For a fresh and crunchy side dish trying serving with a strawberry spinach salad or this classic caesar salad!

      Breads: Share the oven and serve with shortcut garlic parmesan rolls, bread and garlic butter or even dinner rolls.

      Close up of Creamy Tomato Chicken Pasta Skillet garnished with parsley.


      This chicken pasta skillet recipe reheats well!

          • To Store: Keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
          • To Reheat: Pop a portion in the microwave or on the stovetop! Add a splash of cream (or milk) if needed.

      One-Pot Pasta Dishes


      Creamy Tomato Chicken Pasta Skillet

      This one pot pasta is the perfect comfort food!
      Course Main Course, Pasta
      Cuisine American
      Keyword Chicken Pasta
      Prep Time 20 minutes
      Cook Time 16 minutes
      Total Time 36 minutes
      Servings 8 servings
      Calories 423
      Author Holly Nilsson


      • 1 tablespoon olive oil
      • 2 cloves garlic
      • 8 oz medium pasta penne, shells or rotini
      • 14 oz can diced tomatoes
      • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
      • 2 1/2 - 3 cups water
      • 1/2 teaspoon basil
      • 1/2 teaspoon oregano
      • 2 cups chicken chopped and cooked
      • 1/2 cup heavy cream or evaporated milk for a lighter version
      • 1 cup mozzarella shredded
      • 1 cup parmesan cheese shredded


      • Preheat oven to 450°F.
      • Heat oil in a large oven-proof skillet. Add garlic and cook until fragrant.
      • Stir in pasta, canned tomatoes, water and tomato paste. Let simmer about 2 minutes less than package calls for so pasta is VERY al dente.
      • Remove from heat and stir in chicken, seasonings, and cream. Top with shredded cheese.
      • Bake 10-12 minutes or until bubbly and cheese is browned.


      Calories: 423 | Carbohydrates: 26g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 83mg | Sodium: 550mg | Potassium: 305mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 783IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 411mg | Iron: 2mg

Pizza Bites (snack or meal)

Pizza Bites are the best way to feed a hungry crowd something quick and tasty. Made by rolling all your favorite pizza ingredients cinnamon bun style and baking until cheesy and delicious! 

Dip these little bites in pizza sauce for serving.

Pizza bites baked in a casserole dish.

How To Make Pizza Bites

It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3 to make this fun treat, and it will be ready in a flash!

  1. Roll out pizza dough and cut into 16 pieces.
  2. Fill with equal portions of cheese and pepperoni in the center.
  3. Form into a ball and top with oil & seasonings and bake!

Pizza bites being topped with pepperoni and cheese before forming into a bowl.

Enjoy as-is, or serve with pizza sauce, marinara sauce or homemade ranch dressing for some delicious dipping!


Swap out the fillings to your favorites or build a Create-Your-Own pizza bar and let everyone have fun!

  • Mozzarella is the go-to for pizza because of its creamy, mild flavor and its ability to hold everything together, but don’t be shy about trying different kinds of cheese. Muenster is a great choice!
  • Of course, bacon crumbles make everything even better, but how about a dollop of jalapeno popper dip, too?
  • Add your favorite cooked meats and veggies including bell peppers, onions and black olives!

Two images showing pizza bites being brushed with olive oil and seasonings.

Pizza bites are so versatile, they can also be dressed up for a more upscale presentation! Just add basil, red pepper flakes, or a sprinkle of crumbled feta cheese and watch everyone come back for more!

Cheesy Pizza Filled Recipes


Pizza Snack Bites

These Pizza Snack Bites are the perfect snack for game day, or after school!
Course Appetizer
Cuisine American
Keyword pizza bites
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 27 minutes
Servings 12 rolls
Calories 171
Author Holly Nilsson


  • 1 pound pizza dough
  • 8 oz mozzarella cheese cut into 16 cubes, or shredded
  • 3 ounces sliced pepperoni chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon Italian seasoning blend
  • 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese grated
  • pizza sauce for serving


  • Preheat oven to 400°F and spray a 9x9 baking dish with non-stick spray, set aside.
  • Divide dough into 16 pieces. Roll each out into a 1/4 inch thick circle.
  • Add equal parts cheese and pepperoni into the center of each circle. Pinch together the corners of the dough and create a ball.
  • Place the balls, seam side down, into the prepared baking dish.
  • After all the balls have been made and are in the dish, brush the tops with olive oil and sprinkled on garlic powder, Italian seasoning, and Parmesan cheese.
  • Bake for about 20 minutes or until the dough is fully cooked and the rolls are golden brown.
  • Serve with warmed pizza sauce for dipping.


Calories: 171 | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 12mg | Sodium: 616mg | Potassium: 100mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 185IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 183mg | Iron: 1mg


Homemade Pizza Dough {and Sauce!}

Homemade Pizza Dough is a quick and easy to make at home! This pizza dough recipe makes a traditional crust is sturdy enough to hold your favorite toppings!

It’s delicious with a slight chew, just the way a pizza crust should be!

Baked pizza made on homemade pizza dough cut into wedges.


    • WATER The water should be warm but not hot. If you have a thermometer, you want the water to be about 110°F.
    • YEAST This recipe uses active dry yeast. You can use instant yeast (or rapid rise) in this recipe as well, skip letting it sit in the water in this recipe if using instant yeast. (1 packet of yeast = 2 1/4 teaspoons)
    • SUGAR A pinch of sugar is needed to feed the yeast and help it bloom.
    • FLOUR I use all purpose flour in this recipe as it’s what we  most often have on hand. Add flour a bit at a time just until the dough is no longer sticky. If you add too much, the dough will be tough.
    • OLIVE OIL & SALT  Are added for flavor.

RISE TIME: This is a quick pizza dough and doesn’t require a long rise time. If you’d like you can allow it to rise for up to 1 hour before rolling out to fill the pizza pans. I  most often don’t rise the dough and just bake it as is.

How to Make Pizza Dough

The best pizza dough uses just a handful of ingredients you likely have in your pantry! Be sure to check the expiration dates on your yeast and make sure it’s still fresh before you use it. Fresh yeast means a good rise and a perfectly chewy crust.

  1. Mix the yeast and water in a bowl, let sit until the yeast starts to bubble up.
  2. Add three cups of flour to the mixture, one cup at a time until you get a nice dough that isn’t too sticky. Add a bit more flour if needed if your dough seems sticky.

Now that you have your dough, it’s time to knead!

Images of preparing pizza dough

How to Knead Pizza Dough

Kneading pizza dough takes a little bit of muscle but is so worth it in the end!

  • Turn the dough onto a floured surface and knead the dough until it is smooth, adding more flour to keep it from sticking to your hands or work surface.
  • Knead the dough using two hands, pushing the dough away from you and then turning it 45° to the left, knead it some more, and then turn it another 45° until a full circle has been completed. It should only take about 6 minutes.
  • Roll and form the dough to fit the greased pizza pans or stones.  Let the dough rise.

After the dough has risen, poke holes all over the surface with a fork (this is called ‘docking’ and prevents the dough from bubbling up), then add sauce, cheese, toppings and then top with cheese before baking. Super simple and super fun!

Have a stand mixer? Let the mixer do the heavy lifting for you. Simply add the ingredients to the mixer with dough hook. Once combined, turn the mixer to medium high for about 4-5 minutes.

Pizza dough rolled out on a pizza pan, topped with sauce, cheese and pepperoni.


Pizza dough can be made hours ahead of time and stored in the fridge. Rest on the counter for about 20 minutes and then roll to fit pans. You can make a batch of the shortcut pizza sauce in the recipe below or use canned or another homemade pizza sauce.

To Freeze Pizza Dough

Freezing pizza dough is so easy and is a great way to always have pizza dough on hand!

  • To freeze, place dough ball into a zippered freezer bag. Frozen pizza dough balls can last up to 6 months in the freezer.
  • To thaw, let them come to room temp, place them on a floured surface and dust with flour. Knead a few minutes, then shape over a pizza stone or pan.

The best thing about frozen pizza dough is that there is no need to overly knead them since they will require a little kneading once they are thawed again!

A baked pepperoni pizza made with homemade pizza dough.

Delicious Pizza Recipes

Use it to make a classic Margherita pizza or load it up with topping like this cheeseburger pizza. Either way, it is sure to be delicious!


Homemade Pizza Dough {and Sauce!}

This easy pizza dough recipe is perfect for baking or freezing!
Course Dinner
Cuisine American
Keyword Pizza Dough
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 272
Author Holly Nilsson



  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil divided use
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour or half all-purpose half whole wheat more as needed


  • Preheat oven to 425°F.
  • Mix the yeast and water in a small bowl, cover and let stand for about 5-10 minutes.
  • Mix the 2 tablespoons olive oil, sugar, salt and yeast mixture in a large mixing bowl. Mix in the 3 cups of flour, a cup at a time. If the dough seems sticky, add more flour, a couple tablespoons at a time.
  • Turn the dough onto a floured surface and knead until moderately stiff, about six minutes.
  • If time allows, you can let the dough rise 1 hour at this point. If allowing to rise, punch the dough down before fitting in the pans below.
  • Lightly grease two pizza pans with oil. Roll out the dough and stretch to fill the pans.
  • Let the dough rise 10 minutes.
  • Brush pizza dough with remaining olive oil and top with pizza sauce, toppings and cheese as desired. Bake 15-18 minutes or until cheese is melted and crust is golden.


Note: You can allow up to 1 hour rise time for this dough but more often than not, I skip this step to make a quick dough.
Rising the dough will add a bit more flavor (and chew to the texture).
Shortcut Pizza Sauce: Place 28 oz canned diced tomatoes in a sieve and press out as much juice as possible. Place tomatoes, 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano, 3 tablespoons olive oil and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a blender or food processor. Pulse until smooth.
Nutrition includes dough only. Serving is 2 slices of pizza (if each pizza is cut into 8 slices). 


Calories: 272 | Carbohydrates: 41g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 231mg | Potassium: 254mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 129IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 47mg | Iron: 3mg

Adapted from The Food Nanny

Top image - baked pepperoni pizza. Bottom image - pizza dough formed into a ball.
Baked pepperoni pizza.
Close up of a baked pepperoni pizza.

Creamy Baked Tortellini {With a Cheesy White Sauce!}

This cheesy, creamy baked tortellini is perfect all year long! An extra quick homemade cheese sauce is tossed with tender tortellini and ham and peas.

Swap out the add-ins for your favorites (or whatever you have on hand) to create a quick and delicious pasta recipe!

A serving of baked tortellini on a white plate.

This baked tortellini recipe will be a winner because there are so many different mix-ins and add-ons, you can use nearly whatever you have on hand and everyone will love it!

How to Make Tortellini Bake

This creamy baked tortellini recipe is so simple to prepare.

  1. Cook tortellini according to package directions. Do not overcook, they will cook more in the oven.
  2. Make the cheese sauce (per recipe below).
  3. Combine everything in a casserole dish and cover with remaining cheddar cheese and bake uncovered.

Left image - baked tortellini ingredients in a casserole dish. Right image - sauce being poured over baked tortellini ingredients in a casserole dish.

Shortcut: Swap out the homemade sauce for jarred alfredo sauce (you’ll need about 22oz or 1 1/2 (15 oz each jars) and stir in the cheeses.

Add in leftover roasted veggies or leftover chicken in place of ham.

What To Serve With Tortellini Bake

Depending on what you put in your signature version of tortellini bake, nearly anything can be a good side dish! Try a fresh, crispy salad with a tangy vinaigrette, beet salad or even a simple tossed salad.

Serve with a slice of garlic bread and a tossed salad.

A casserole dish full of creamy baked tortellini.

Got Leftovers?

Creamy tortellini leftovers make great next day lunches for school and work! It can even be served cold!

  • To Reheat: Thaw in the refrigerator and reheat in the microwave. Add a little milk to thin it out a bit if needed.

More Baked Pasta Dishes

Creamy Baked Tortellini

This easy tortellini bake is filled with creamy, cheesy goodness!

  • 20 oz cheese tortellini (refrigerated)
  • 2 cups ham (chopped)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 garlic cloves (minced)
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 2/3 cups whole milk
  • 1 1/2 cups sharp cheddar cheese (shredded, divided)
  • 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese (grated)
  • 1 cup frozen green peas (defrosted)
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Cook tortellini according to package directions.
  3. Combine butter, garlic and basil in a saucepan. Cook over medium heat 3-4 minutes or until fragrant.

  4. Add flour and seasonings. Cook 1 minute. Stir in milk a little at a time until smooth. Bring to a boil while stirring over medium heat.
  5. Remove from heat and stir in 1 cup of cheddar cheese and parmesan cheese until smooth and melted.
  6. Combine tortellini, sauce, ham, and green peas in a 9×13 pan. Top with remaining cheddar cheese and bake uncovered, 15-20 minutes.

Top image - creamy tortellini bake. Bottom image - tortellini bake ingredients in a casserole.
Close up of a serving of creamy tortellini bake.
Overview of a casserole of creamy baked tortellini.

Bucatini Amatriciana

Bucatini all’Amatriciana is a delicious pasta recipe! The sauce in this recipe is really quick to make yet boasts a big flavor!

Bucatini is a long tubular pasta, almost like a hollow spaghetti and it pairs perfectly with a rich and flavorful tomato sauce.

A serving of bucatini all'amatriciana topped with parmesan and basil.

This dish is like a taste of Italy along with other favorites like Italian Wedding Soup or mozzarella stuffed meatballs, and an appetizer of bruschetta.

What is Bucatini?

Bucatini pasta is shaped like spaghetti (but thicker) and it is hollow in the middle. The hole in the middle of this long pasta captures all of the juicy goodness of the sauce.

It is definitely a heartier pasta and lends itself well to heavier sauces like tomato-based ones. If bucatini is hard to find, then spaghetti noodles will do or even a penne pasta in a pinch!

Two images showing the steps to prepare the homemade tomato sauce.


Much like a Spaghetti Carbonara (and many Italian dishes to be honest) this doesn’t contain a ton of ingredients so it’s a good idea to make sure they’re high quality.

  • Pancetta This adds a salty flavor and while guanciale (pork cheek) is traditional, pancetta is easy to find. You can substitute bacon if it’s all you have on hand.
  • Tomatoes Tomatoes are the base of the sauce so splurge for a can of San Marzano Italian tomatoes, you’ll be glad you did. This recipe uses whole tomatoes (instead of diced) as they tend to have a better consistency.
  • Cheese This dish adds a bit of parmesan although pecorino is traditional. If you have pecorino, by all means use that. If not, a good quality parmesan is just fine in this recipe. Be sure to grate your own cheese (instead of purchasing grated cheese).

Close up of bucatini amatriciana garnished with basil.

How To Make Bucatini Amatriciana

Bucatini is a great pasta and pairs well with a hearty flavorful sauce.

  1. Cook and drain the pasta. Reserve the pasta water.
  2. Crush the tomatoes by hand and set aside in a bowl. Cook pancetta until crisp in a pan over medium heat.
  3. Add the onions and garlic. Then add remaining ingredients and simmer until thickened.

Sauce Consistency: Add cooked pasta to the sauce and add a little pasta water to get the right consistency.

The sauce thickens up and the starchy pasta water thins it out enough that it can seep into the hollow of the bucatini noodles.

Bucatini all'amatriciana prepared in a frying pan topped with basil.

What To Serve With Bucatini Amatriciana

Bucatini all’Amatriciana is best served with lighter side dishes like a fresh tossed salad and a slice of garlic bread.

Traditional Italian Favorites

Bucatini Amatriciana

Made with a rich and flavorful tomato sauce!

  • 4 oz pancetta (diced)
  • 1 onion (sliced)
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 28 oz can whole tomatoes
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • kosher salt
  • 1/3 cup parmesan cheese (freshly grated)
  • 2-3 tablespoons fresh parsley
  • 12 oz bucatini (or spaghetti/linguine)
  1. Crush whole tomatoes by hand.
  2. Cook pancetta in a pan over medium heat until crisp.
  3. Add onions and cook 2-3 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant. Add tomatoes with juices, water, pepper flakes and salt to taste. Simmer 15-20 minutes or until thickened.
  4. Meanwhile, cook and drain pasta, reserving 1 cup of pasta water.
  5. Add pasta to sauce, stirring in pasta water as needed to reach desired consistency.
  6. Add cheese and parsley and serve.

Top image - a serving of bucatini amatriciana. Bottom image - Bucatini amatriciana prepared in a frying pan.
Close up of a serving of bucatini amatriciana topped with parmesan.
A serving of bucatini amatriciana topped with parmesan.

Easy Cheesy Pasta Bake (with Spaghetti & Meatballs)

Everyone loves a nice saucy Pasta Bake recipe! This meatball casserole is made with homemade meatballs (or frozen if you’re in a rush), spaghetti and a variety of cheesy toppings all baked into a delicious casserole.

Add a loaf of crusty bread and fresh tossed salad for a perfect meal!

Spaghetti and Meatball pasta bake garnished with parsley.

Casseroles involving pasta, like a cheesy baked penne or a spaghetti casserole, are always welcome potluck at work or as the main attraction for any crowd!


    • PASTA Spaghetti is my choice here but any long pasta will do. Keep in mind it will bake more in the oven so be sure to cook it al dente (firm to the bite).
    • SAUCE Make your own homemade marinara or use store bought to keep this extra quick!
    • MEATBALLS This is one place I almost always use homemade. You can prep meatballs ahead of time and freeze them, the flavor is so much better than store bought.
    • VEGGIES  You can add veggies to the sauce in this reicpe if you’d like! Zucchini, peppers, and mushrooms are great options!
    • CHEESE Cheese is added to the spaghetti as well as on top for great flavor! Shred it yourself for best results, pre-shredded has additives to keep it from clumping and it doesn’t melt as well.

Left image - cheese, egg, and seasonings being combined in a glass bowl. Right image - spaghetti mixed with egg mixture in the casserole dish.

How to Make Spaghetti Pasta Bake

Any decent meatball casserole calls for delicious meatballs! If you don’t want to make them by hand, replace them with defrosted/cooked premade meatballs for simplicity!

  1. Prepare the meatballs. Try spicy Italian sausage meatballs or even turkey meatballs!
  2. Mix pasta and cheeses (per recipe below) and place in the bottom of a 9×13 dish.
  3. Top with meatballs and sauce and bake until bubbly and browned.

Serve with a slice of garlic bread to soak up every last drop of that sauce!

TIP: Bake the meatballs right in the 9×13 pan you’ll use for the casserole… one less dish to wash!

Left image - spaghetti topped with meatballs. Right image - prepared spaghetti and meatball pasta bake.

What To Serve With Spaghetti And Meatball Pasta Bake

Anything that goes with regular spaghetti and meatballs or baked spaghetti goes with this super tasty pasta bake!

Spaghetti and meatball pasta baked being lifted out of a casserole dish!

Easy Pasta Dishes

Spaghetti and Meatball Pasta Bake

Noodles are tossed with a cheesy sauce and then topped with homemade meatballs and pasta sauce!


  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1/3 cup fresh bread crumbs
  • 1 tablespoons milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 cup onion (finely chopped)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley (chopped)
  • 1 egg


  • 8 oz spaghetti
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cups mozzarella cheese (shredded, divided)
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese (grated)
  • 1 large egg (slightly beaten)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley
  • 28 oz pasta sauce (jarred or homemade)
  1. Grease a large casserole dish.
  2. Preheat oven to 400°F. Combine all meatball ingredients and form into 1″ balls.

  3. Place meatballs in a 9×13 dish and bake 18-20 minutes. Remove from oven and reduce heat to 350°F. Remove the meatballs and set aside.

  4. Boil the pasta until al dente. Drain well and toss with olive oil.

  5. Stir together egg, parsley, pepper, 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, 1/4 cup parmesan cheese & pepper to taste. Toss with the pasta and place it in the 9×13 dish.

  6. Top with meatballs and pasta sauce. Cover with foil and bake 35 minutes. Remove foil, top with remaining cheeses and continue to bake until cheese is melted and browned, about 10 minutes.

Top image - pasta bake being scooped out of a casserole dish. Bottom image - Pasta Bake in a casserole dish.
Spaghetti Pasta Bake being scooped out of a casserole dish.
Pasta Bake in a casserole dish. Garnished with parsley.