Summertime Easy Caprese Pizza
This caprese pizza is simple to make, yet so fresh and delicious! It has a crunchy crust topped with ripe cherry tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, and basil, then drizzled with a tangy-sweet balsamic reduction. We skip the sauce so it cooks quickly and clean-up is a breeze.
This is a summer pizza that has it all: a crunchy crust, sweet cherry tomatoes, melty cheese, and aromatic fresh herbs. With a drizzle of balsamic glaze to finish it off, it's the perfect alfresco meal.
The secret to this quick-cooking pizza is to skip the sauce. You might be wondering, how do you make a pizza without sauce? After we form a crust with the dough, we simply rub it with olive oil and sprinkle it with flaky sea salt. Then we top it with cheese and sliced tomatoes and bake it until it's golden. Before serving, we sprinkle on a few fresh basil leaves and drizzle it with balsamic reduction. It's that simple!
It's an easy-to-make, healthier pizza that showcases the best of summer. Enjoy it with a salad for lunch or dinner, or pack it for a picnic.
What's the difference between margherita and caprese pizza?
Caprese pizza, like caprese salad, stars fresh basil, mozzarella, and the best tomatoes you can find. The ingredients are similar to a margherita or neapolitan pizza, but the sweet and tangy balsamic glaze makes the caprese unique.
The flavors in this caprese pizza start with tasty ingredients. Here's everything you'll need to make it:
- Pizza crust – use your favorite dough, our no-knead pizza dough, or try it with this gluten-free pizza crust.
- Olive oil – for drizzling onto the dough and keeping things moist.
- Flaky sea salt – specks of flaky sea salt enhance the flavors and give the crust a little crunch.
- Mozzarella – we use mozzarella balls for that wonderful fresh cheesy flavor.
- Tomatoes – cherry tomatoes in the summer are sweet and oh-so flavorful.
- Black pepper – for seasoning and adding depth of flavor.
- Fresh basil – added just before serving, with subtle notes of pepper and citrus.
- Balsamic reduction – this sweet reduction is drizzled on at the end for added flavor.
What kind of crust should I use?
You might be wondering what crust to use for this pizza recipe. Use any homemade or store-bought pizza dough you love, or try our favorite no-knead pizza dough. It's our absolute favorite restaurant-quality pizza dough recipe, but it does take some planning ahead.
How to make caprese pizza
It's easy to make this caprese pizza recipe in a few simple steps:
- While your oven preheats, form the pizza dough into a round crust on your baking sheet. Rub it with olive oil, and sprinkle it with sea salt. Shred half the mozzarella and sprinkle it on top, too.
- Next, add the cherry tomatoes making sure most of them are facing cut-side up. Tear up the rest of the mozzarella into smaller pieces and scatter them on top of the tomatoes. Then, sprinkle it all with pepper.
- Bake your pizza until the crust is golden and cooked through, about 12-15 minutes.
- Just before serving it, top your pizza with fresh basil leaves and drizzle with balsamic reduction. Enjoy!
Full recipe instructions are in the recipe card below.
What is balsamic glaze?
Balsamic glaze is simply balsamic vinegar that's been reduced to a thicker, sweeter liquid. It's widely available for purchase at most grocery stores but it’s also easy to make at home.
How to make balsamic glaze: simply bring 1 cup of balsamic vinegar to a boil in a small pot on the stove, and let it simmer until the mixture has reduced to about ¼ cup. The liquid will become much thicker and sweeter, making it perfect for drizzling! Store leftovers in a sealed jar or container for up to 2 weeks.
We recommend using cherry tomatoes to prevent your pizza from getting soggy, but in a pinch you could use slices of regular size tomatoes.
Store any leftover pizza in a container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Ideas for serving caprese pizza
Our favorite way to enjoy this pizza caprese is in the open air in the summer, when tomatoes and basil are ripe and plentiful. It's great on its own or serve it with a salad like our grilled peach salad, arugula and fresh cherry salad, or simple spring mix salad.
Why not wash it down with a chilled glass of white wine or a refreshing cocktail like our strawberry basil mojito.
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If you love this recipe as much as we do, let us know with a 5-star rating!
- 1 pizza crust, gluten-free if needed (see notes)
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- ½ teaspoon flaky sea salt
- 5 ounces mozzarella
- 1 lb cherry tomatoes, cut in half
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- A handful of basil leaves
- Balsamic reduction, to drizzle
- Preheat your oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Form the pizza dough into a round pizza crust on a baking sheet. Rub the olive oil over the top then sprinkle with salt. Shred half of the mozzarella and sprinkle it on top.1 pizza crust, 2 teaspoons olive oil, ½ teaspoon flaky sea salt, 5 ounces mozzarella
- Top with the cherry tomatoes, making sure that most of them are facing cut-side up to prevent the crust from getting soggy. Tear the remaining mozzarella into smaller pieces and scatter them on top of the tomatoes. Sprinkle the pepper over the top.1 lb cherry tomatoes, ½ teaspoon black pepper
- Bake the pizza for 12-15 minutes, or until the crust is golden and cooked through.
- Remove the pizza from the oven then top with some basil leaves and drizzle with the reduced balsamic vinegar.A handful of basil leaves, Balsamic reduction