In the Kitchen
kidskitchen heartpepperonipizza main Kid's Kitchen: Heart Shaped Homemade Pepperoni Pizza
By Katie Goodman
Personal pan pizzas are so fun for kids to help prepare. Even more so when you form them into hearts for Valentine’s Day. Heart-shaped pizza crusts, heart-healthy homemade pizza sauce, and heart-shaped pepperoni – awesome!
You can adapt this recipe for many other holidays using cookie cutters. I love to purchase graduated sets of different shapes, so we can do many fun things in different sizes. Not only are shapes great for presentation, but they also create great teaching moments and are fun for children to help with.
Some of our favorite shapes are hearts, snowflakes, and flowers, but you can purchase many other shapes in craft stores or online.
If you don’t already have a favorite pizza crust recipe, we really enjoy these:

The great thing about the Light Whole Wheat Recipe is the method. You prepare 4 pounds of dough in advance, store it in the refrigerator, and take out dough as needed throughout the next two weeks. That way, when you are ready to make pizza, there is no 2-hour rise time to wait for.
The Pizza Dough with Oregano is delicious as well, but has a more traditional preparation and will need to be planned for in advance, which, as most parents know, is not always an option.

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Ingredients

For the Homemade Pizza Sauce:
6 oz tomato paste
1 cup crushed tomatoes
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp dried Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp granulated sugar

For the Pizzas:
1 lb of your favorite pizza dough
Fresh mozzarella cheese, grated – about 8 oz
All-natural pepperoni slices
Homemade Pizza Sauce

Materials

1″ heart cookie cutter
4 1/2″ – 6″ heart cookie cutter
Pizza stone or cookie sheet
Flour for dusting
Parchment paper

Directions

Step 1: Preheat the oven to 550 degrees F (or 500 if that is the highest your oven goes). Place a pizza stone or large, rectangular cookie sheet on the top middle rack during the preheat.
Kidskitchen-Heartpepperonipizza-Pizzasauce-Preparesauceingredients

Step 2:
Add the tomato paste, crushed tomatoes, olive oil, dried Italian seasoning, salt, black pepper, and sugar to a medium-sized sauce pan.
Tip: If you don’t have crushed tomatoes, you can puree a can of diced tomatoes in a small food processor or blender.
Kidskitchen-Heartpepperonipizza-Pizzasauce-Whiskingredients
Step 3: Whisk the ingredients to combine and cook over medium heat until it begins to sputter. Then turn to low and let simmer while you prepare the pizza crusts, pepperoni, and cheese.
Kidskitchen-Heartpepperonipizza-Heartpepperoni
Step 4: Use the small cookie cutter to cut out hearts from the pepperoni slices and set aside. I like to use the heart cutouts and the slices with heart “windows” in them so there is no waste. Set aside.
Kidskitchen-Heartpepperonipizza-Dustandpatdough
Step 5: Roll out a piece of parchment paper large enough to roll the pizza dough out on (plus a little extra). Lightly dust with flour. Add the pizza dough, dusting the top lightly with flour, and pat it into a flat round.
Kidskitchen-Heartpepperonipizza-Rolldough
Step 6: Using a rolling pin, roll the dough out into 1/4″ to 1/8″ thickness (depending on your crust preference). Using the large cookie cutter, cut out 4-6 individual-sized pizza crusts from the dough.
Kidskitchen-Heartpepperonipizza-Cutoutdough
Step 7: Remove the scraps from around the pizzas and re-roll to form additional crusts. You can also form breadsticks for dipping in sauce with the scrap dough, or store it in the refrigerator for later use.
Kidskitchen-Heartpepperonipizza-Assembled
Step 8: Spread 1-2 tablespoons of sauce on top of each crust. Then sprinkle with cheese and top with pepperoni.
Kidskitchen-Heartpepperonipizza-Final
Step 9: Transfer the entire sheet of parchment with the crusts on it onto your pizza stone or cookie sheet. Bake at 550 degrees F for 5-10 minutes.
Extra sauce will store well in an airtight container refrigerated for up to a week, or a month in the freezer.
About the Author:
author katiegoodman2 Kid's Kitchen: Heart Shaped Homemade Pepperoni Pizza
Katie Goodman blogs at goodLife {eats} where she shares what she finds good in the kitchen and in life through recipes, family memories, and yummy photography. She also works as a freelance food writer and photographer for various sites. Outside of cooking, Katie loves reading, gardening, visiting family, and attending the Balloon Fiesta in Albuquerque, New Mexico, where she resides with her husband and two children.


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