By Lindsey Johnson of Café Johnsonia for Design Mom.
I’ve been really trying to find something my son will eat for lunch. He has numerous issues with food beyond being a picky eater. It’s more of a sensory issue — he’s on the autism spectrum. When I find something he will eat besides peanut butter and honey, I’m super excited. For Menu #21 of our Lunchbox Series, I made him homemade pizza pockets! (I can’t believe I hadn’t thought of it before!) Admittedly it’s not the healthiest of lunches, but every once in awhile I feel okay about it. And it’s a lot better than the pizza they have available at school.
LUNCH MENU #21
– homemade pizza pocket (recipe below)
– carrot and celery sticks
– dried cranberries
– portable kefir (my kids call these ‘yogurt smoothies’)
1 lb. store-bought or homemade pizza dough
1/2 cup pizza or marinara sauce
1 – 1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
12 slices pepperoni
1. Divide the pizza dough into four smaller balls. Let them rest for 15-20 minutes at room temperature.
2. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
3. Roll each ball of dough into a medium-sized circle on a lightly floured surface. Let rest for a few minutes if the dough pulls back when it’s rolled.
4. Spoon a few tablespoons of the sauce on one half of each of the dough rounds, making sure to keep it about 1/2″ from the edge. Top with 1/4 cup (or more if you like extra cheese) and top with the pepperoni slices.
5. Fold the dough over on itself to make a half moon. Bring the bottom edge of the dough up over the top edge and press it together to seal it. (If it’s not sticking, dab a little water around the edge to use as “glue.”
6. Place each of the pizza pockets on the prepared baking sheet. With a sharp knife, make several slashes/vents in the top of the dough.
7. Bake for about 15-20 minutes, or until golden on top and the cheese is bubbly. Let cool slightly before serving, or serve at room temperature.
Yield: 4 pizza pockets
Note: I either make these the night before for dinner and make extras for lunch the next day, or make a dedicated batch for the purpose of school lunches. I keep them in the fridge overnight, wrap them up, and they kids eat them at room temperature. If you want them to stay warm, one idea is to heat them up in the morning and wrap them well in aluminum foil and place them in a small insulated bag — like the ones you see at the grocery store for keeping food hot/cold for several hours, or an insulated lunchbox minus the ice pack.