Now that I work from home, there are days when I have ZERO idea what to make for lunch. I try to keep a variety of healthy options on hand, but it doesn’t always work out that I actually want to eat those things. Some days a hunk of Parmesan cheese and a handful of chocolate chips end up being lunch. When that happens, I’m usually starving again by 3pm. Enter these fun, popable little pepperoni pizza bites. They make the perfect mid-afternoon snack for days when I haven’t quite got my lunch game together.
I found this recipe through StumbleUpon way back in 2010. (This was in the dark ages before Pinterest was even close to a thing.) I’d heard of maybe one other food blog in my life, and I’d made maybe one recipe from the internet. Making these pizza bites was one of the very first times I realized that finding recipes online was an amazing way to expand my horizons in the kitchen. I stuck to the recipe religiously for the first few dozen times I made them, but once I got my kitchen sea legs under me, I started playing around with ingredients and making it my own.
After a bit of trial and error, I’ve found that these pizza bites do well with quite a number of changes. The recipe is pretty basic, so it stands up well to just about any addition you want to throw at it. I amped up the flavor in this version with garlic and dried basil, but feel free to play with your own combinations and see what you like best. Bell peppers, olives, and different types of cheese would all work very nicely here.
The best thing about this recipe? It’s basically no batter and all fillings. The ratio of flour to pizza “toppings” is heavily skewed in the pepperoni’s favor. The cheese on top (and what touches the sides of the pan) gets golden and crispy, and the pizza bites have great texture. It’s hard to stop after just a few, so I’m glad the recipe makes 2 dozen. They’re the perfect snack for after school or when lunch turned out kind of meh. I bet they would even make a great appetizer or snack for watching football games!
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Adapted from Noble Pig
- 3/4 cup flour
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 4 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 3-4 ounces pepperoni, diced fine (I chop it in a mini food processor)
- 3/4 cup milk
- 1 egg, beaten
- Marinara sauce, for serving
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Grease a 24-cup mini muffin tin with no-stick spray. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, dried basil, baking powder, and garlic to combine. Stir in the cheese and pepperoni until they are well-coated with flour. Stir in the milk and egg. Mix to combine.
- Spoon the batter into the mini muffin tins. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the pizza bites are puffed and golden. Serve warm with marinara sauce.