Dessert pizza just like your local Pizza Hut used to make… except dressed up for the holidays with a honeyed cranberry sauce! There’s crumb topping and vanilla glaze too. Each bite of this sweet treat is better than the last!
Disclaimer: This recipe was created for the Cape Cod Select Holiday Blogger Recipe Challenge. Please follow them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest. I was sent free cranberries for recipe development purposes, but was in any other way compensated for my time, ingredients, etc.
I have fond memories of the Pizza Hut buffet. My family used to go after church sometimes when I was a kid and it was a TREAT to get my choice of pizza slices, breadsticks, salad… in the amounts I wanted. Which, let’s face it, probably created a lot of waste because kids take a few bites of something before moving on to something else. Oops. It was so fun to run up to the buffet when they brought out a new pizza… and when it was one of their dessert pizzas, watch out! Everyone in the restaurant headed up in en masse to grab a slice of dessert pizza–some ridiculously sweet fruit topping out of a can: cherries or apples, usually covered with a crumb topping and drizzled to death with vanilla icing. So. Good. I haven’t been to a Pizza Hut buffet in years and I don’t think they even make these dessert pizzas anymore… so I decided to make my own!
As you can probably guess, my dessert pizza is a little fresher, a little fancier than ye olde Pizza Hut’s was… but that’s okay, the original version was great in its own way! But let’s talk today’s version. Instead of a canned fruit topping, I made a cranberry sauce using Cape Cod Select Premium Frozen Cranberries. Check ’em out at a store near you. I can’t find fresh cranberries at my local grocery store anymore, so it’s great to have a frozen option to help with those cranberry cravings in July. 🙂 They’ll even ship them from their website. How cool! But back to this pizza. My cranberry sauce is sweetened with honey and scented with grapefruit… and I would have eaten it by the spoonful had I not needed it for this recipe. In fact, I might make another batch soon so I can do just that! I know it’s pretty typical for cranberries and oranges to be paired together, but I personally love grapefruit and the aromatic bittersweetness it adds to dishes. The smell of the cranberries as they cooked in a mixture of grapefruit zest, juice, and water was fantastic! This sauce easily is the star of the dessert pizza… but it can’t be all by itself. In true Pizza Hut style, I also made a quick crumb topping with lots of brown sugar, oats, and pumpkin pie spice to layer on top of the sauce and crust. After baking, an easy vanilla glaze drizzled on top adds just the sweetness you need to contrast with the sweet-tart goodness of the cranberry sauce. Everything was absolutely delicious together–perfect for dessert or even breakfast. 🙂 I hope you enjoy this pizza as much as we did! Happy New Year! 2017!
one year ago: Cheesy Southwest Farro
two years ago: Spiced Biscotti with Eggnog Glaze
three years ago: Baked Fish Tacos with Cranberry Salsa
four years ago: White Chocolate Peppermint M&M Cookies
five years ago: Classic Sugar Cookies
six years ago: Sweet-Spicy Pretzel Mix
Cranberry Dessert Pizza
- 1 batch pizza dough – I used my favorite but storebought or another recipe would work too!
for cranberry “sauce”
- 1 1/2 cups Cape Cod Select Premium Frozen Cranberries
- zest and juice of 1 grapefruit – approximately 3 tablespoons zest and 6 ounces juice
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch dissolved in 1 tablespoon hot water
for crumb topping
- 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
- 1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1/2 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1/2 cup cold, unsalted butter, cut into chunks
for vanilla glaze
- 1 2/3 cups powdered sugar
- 3 tablespoons half and half [or milk]
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
In a medium saucepan set over medium heat, combine cranberries, grapefruit zest and juice, and water. Cook until cranberries burst, approximately 15 minutes. Remove from heat, then stir in honey and the tablespoon of cornstarch dissolved in a tablespoon of hot water. Allow to cool slightly.
Meanwhile, press pizza dough into a pizza pan [mine is 14 inches].
Prepare crumb topping by combining brown sugar, oats, flour, and pumpkin pie spice in a medium bowl. Use a pastry blender or two knives to cut cold butter into the mixture until coarse crumbs are formed.
Spread cranberry sauce over uncooked pizza crust, then sprinkle on crumb topping.
Bake for 15-18 minutes or until crust and topping are both golden brown. Allow to cool for 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, make vanilla glaze by whisking together powdered sugar, half and half, and vanilla. Add extra powdered sugar or half and half to reach desired consistency.
Drizzle glaze on cooled pizza. I had extra… perfect for dipping! For best results, wait until the pizza is mostly cool before cutting to allow the cranberry sauce to set. It’s a little messier if you cut it while warm, but still delicious either way!