Pic of Roasted red onion and pepper wholemeal pizza

Roasted red onion and pepper wholemeal pizza

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Vegetarian mains

Roasted red onion and pepper wholemeal pizza

Main Serves 4 2h 20 min
A straightforward introduction to making you own pizza dough, and a lovely way of turning sweet caramelised onions and piquant peppers into a full dinner. If you don't use all the tomato sauce or dough, the leftovers freeze well. This is a really family-friendly recipe: make mini-pizzas and let the children choose and extra toppings.


for the dough

  • 500g strong wholemeal bread flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 7g pack fast-acting dried yeast
  • 1 tsp caster sugar
  • 350ml lukewarm water (do not have it too hot, or it will kill the yeast)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil

for the tomato sauce

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • 400g tin chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tsp dried Italian mixed herbs (use a large handful of fresh basil when in season instead)

for the topping

  • 4 red onions, each peeled and chopped into 8 wedge-shaped pieces, with the core intact
  • olive oil
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 red pepper, chopped into thin strips
  • 1 yellow pepper, chopped into thin strips
  • 250g mozzarella
  • Parmesan or Pecorino, grated
  • dried oregano, or use mixed Italian dried herbs
  • salt and pepper


Prep time: 2h
Cooking time: 20 min

Make the pizza dough

  • Step 1

    mix the flour and salt in a large bowl. In another bowl, combine the yeast, sugar, water and olive oil and leave for 10 minutes.
  • Step 2

    Make a well in the middle of the flour and add the yeast liquid. Gradually bring the flour into the centre using a fork, until the liquid is all combined. With your hands, finish the dough by kneading it into a ball.
  • Step 3

    Cover the dough ball with a sprinkling of flour, cover the bowl with a damp cloth and leave it in a warm place for 1-1½ hours, until the dough has doubled in size.
  • Step 4

    Remove the cloth and use your hands to knead ('knock back') the dough. Either use straight away, or wrap in clingfilm and keep in the fridge until needed. If you want to split the dough at this stage it will freeze well in individual portions.

Make the tomato sauce

  • Step 1

    heat the olive oil in a pan, add the onion and fry gently for 7-8 minutes. Add the garlic and fry for a couple more minutes.
  • Step 2

    Add the tomato purée, chopped tomatoes, Italian herbs and season. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for about 15 minutes.
  • Step 3

    Blitz with a hand blender or in a food processor until smooth (or leave chunky if you prefer it that way).

Make the topping

  • Step 1

    preheat oven to 180°C/Gas 4. Place the onions in a baking dish and toss in just enough olive oil to coat. Sprinkle with balsamic vinegar and season.
  • Step 2

    Bake in the oven for about 30 minutes, or until the onions are soft and just starting to caramelise. Remove and leave to cool.
  • Step 3

    Increase oven temperature to 220°C/Gas 8. Cut the dough into 4 pieces and on a lightly floured work surface, roll out each piece as thin as you can into a rough circle, about the size of a dinner plate. Preheat a lightly oiled baking tray.
  • Step 4

    Place a pizza base on the sheet, spread over just enough tomato sauce to lightly cover, leaving about 2cm clear around the edge.
  • Step 5

    Sprinkle over a quarter of the red onions and a quarter of the peppers. Shred a quarter of the mozzarella over the top, sprinkle over the Parmesan and dried herbs and season with black pepper.
  • Step 6

    Bake in the oven for about 12 minutes, or until the base is cooked through. You will need to cook these in batches if you are making four pizzas, unless you have a particularly big oven.

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