Sunday, April 5, 2009

Asparagus (with onion and ham) Pizza

-My own recipe!

The stuff:

  • ½ bunch of fresh asparagus, washed, woody ends removed
  • 1 small to medium onion, diced
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • ½ - ¾ jar pizza sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed or 2-3 tsp. minced fresh jarred garlic
  • Crushed red pepper flakes to taste
  • 3-4 slices deli ham (vegetarians, see review)
  • ¾ cup part-skim shredded mozzarella cheese (or a reduced fat variety)
  • Freshly cracked pepper

The execution:

Preheat oven to 450. Heat 1 Tbsp olive oil in a frying pan on medium heat. I add a bit of olive oil spray to finish coating the pan. While oil is heating, cut asparagus into thirds and chop the onion. Add to pan and sauté until onions begin to brown or become translucent. Be sure not to overcook, as it will cook further once the pizza is assembled. Add some black pepper if desired.

Meanwhile, add desired amount of pizza sauce to a bowl and mix in the fresh garlic. Place the pizza crust on a pizza pan or stone. Can also be cooked directly on the oven rack for a crispier crust. Add the pizza sauce and spread evenly onto crust with the back of a spoon. For an extra spice kick, sprinkle red pepper flakes over the sauce.

Spread the cooked onion and asparagus evenly over the pizza. Tear up slices of deli ham and place on top of asparagus and onions. Cover the pizza evenly with cheese. This is one area to be careful of adding too many extra calories. I make sure to cover the pizza but don’t load it down with cheese, as there’s a lot of flavor in this recipe already. If I have some on hand, I’ll also mix in a bit of grated parmesan cheese.

If desired, add some freshly cracked pepper to the top before baking.

Bake at 450 for 10-12 minutes or until cheese is golden brown on top. Remove from oven and let cool for a few minutes before cutting into 8 slices.

The review:

Tasty! A good healthy option for pizza lovers! This is one of our absolute favorite weeknight meals. We’ve also had a few friends try it who weren’t sure about it at first (one was so-so on asparagus in general) and the ended up loving it!

I do consider it a “splurge” night since it is pizza, but is so much better than ordering out! This recipe is loosely based on a pizza I ordered on vacation, but I guarantee that one was NOT as healthy as this one. It had shredded pork, which was great, but not practical for a quick weeknight dinner, which was the goal for this meal. The deli ham adds a bit of saltiness to the onion and asparagus, which is a good combination but I’ve also done it without the ham and it’s still good – A nice option for vegetarians (consider adding a bit of salt to the cooking asparagus and onion).

Another way I’ve seen asparagus done on pizza is with goat cheese. Goat cheese happens to be one of my favorite food items ever, but again, it’s not practical for a common weeknight dinner. However, I may come up with a goat cheese combination and add as an alternative at a future date…which would certainly be a splurge night, since it’s pretty much a requirement that one include a glass of red wine to accompany goat cheese!

Nutritional bit:

Per pizza slice (approximate…I’m not making promises on potentially bad math!):

172 calories

6.25 grams of fat

4.25 grams of fiber

It works out to be about 3 WW points per slice. This really depends on the amount of oil and cheese used. If you use more than ¾ cup cheese or use a bit more oil or deli ham, I’d count it as 4. Not bad for pizza!

In other words, this is a meal where portion control is a must but is a great option for pizza lovers!


Instead of using a store bought crust, one could also make homemade whole wheat pizza dough. I’ve done this on occasion, although not with this topping combination. The pre-made one is a good option for a quick weeknight meal. I plan to make and review one later, but I have used this recipe from in the past for whole wheat pizza dough, and it’s worked pretty well.

How to make this a complete meal?

Since having only one slice is incredibly difficult and not practical, I stick with very low-calorie options as side items for this dinner. We generally have grapes or some sort of fruit. If we need something else, a mixed green salad with some chopped tomatoes and cucumbers with vinaigrette dressing is a good option.


~Chews Wisely

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  1. We love asparagus at our house and we have also had the whole wheat Boboli crust. This combination looks like a winner. Thanks for including the great photos!

  2. what a great start, I can't wait to follow this blog!