It’s been a long day and you want to relax over dinner. Popping a frozen pizza into the oven might be perfect. But will that heat-and-eat pizza satisfy your appetite and your nutritional needs? They aren’t exactly the epitome of healthy eating, but that doesn’t mean you have to scratch this delicious, convenient item of your shopping list.
Traditional pizza toppings are usually high sodium and saturated fat-filled meats such as pepperoni and sausage as well as basic veggies like mushrooms and green peppers. However, these day’s you have many more options. If you live dairy-free, or gluten-free you can now enjoy store-bought pizza as well. Plus, you can now find more nutrient-filled toppings such as arugula and grilled vegetables and multi-grain crusts. But don’t let the healthier options deceive you. Even those pizzas contain fair amounts of sodium and saturated fat. They can still fit into a healthy eating plan, and usually a bit easier than the standard toppings.
Helpful hints for creating a healthy frozen pizza meal.
Consider these tips when your dinner plans include a frozen pizza.
- Add a salad. To boost your fiber and vitamin intake, and provide longer lasting satisfaction from your meal, pair your pizza with a vegetable-filled salad. This addition will also help you stay within the pizza’s serving size guidelines.
- Top it right. Another way to increase your nutrient quota is to add more vegetables, such as broccoli, tomatoes, peppers, spinach, and onions, to the pizza before heating it.
- How you slice it. The suggested serving sizes for pizzas vary greatly, ranging from one-half to one-sixth of the pie. If you double up on servings, you could be feasting on more than 800 calories and almost a day’s worth of saturated fat and sodium in one meal.
Bottom line when at the store. Choose pizzas with more veggie toppings instead of meat-toppings. Check the Nutrition Facts Label to find pizzas with no more than 6 grams of saturated fat and no more than 630 milligrams of sodium.
For those nights when you have a bit more energy, and time, check out my yummy recipe for homemade pizza.