It’s finally starting to feel a bit like spring here in Massachusetts. I suppose I shouldn’t say “finally”, seeing as the first official day of spring was just last week, but it’s been a very long, snowy winter. The temperature has risen above freezing during the day and my favorite produce market is opening up the outdoor portion of the store to sell flowers.
Usually at this time of year, I’m realizing that bikini season is just around the corner and deciding I should start exercising more and eating better. Last fall I joined a gym for the first time in a long time, and had the epiphany that I don’t want being healthy and fit to just be a seasonal thing. Though it’s an effort to make yourself go to the gym every week and eat right, it’s even more difficult to let yourself go during the winter and then scramble to get yourself back into shape for the summer.
My attempt to become healthier has definitely been a process. I didn’t just wake up one day and magically eat all the right foods and go to the gym everyday. There’s been a lot of figuring out what does and doesn’t work for my body, and trying to form new habits. I’ve learned that my body functions best with an abundance of protein, healthy fats, limited sugar, and limited dairy. Though I’ve heard that carbs can slow you down and tend to contribute to belly fat, limiting my carb intake has been a bit more difficult. Like many other Americans, I tend to find a meal incomplete without some source of grains and find comfort in eating a bowl of pasta or a sandwich on really good bread.
Instead of completely cutting grains out of my diet, which just seems too drastic for me, I’ve been focusing on incorporating more whole grains into my diet. Lately, one of my favorite ways to eat whole grains is Arnold Pocket Thins. They are a pita pocket-style flat bread and one serving has (1/2 a pita) 100 calories and 8g of whole grains. They come in a number of flavors and are perfect for a sandwich, or in this case, pizza! I chose the Italian Herb flavor for this particular recipe, which seemed appropriate.
This Veggie Pita Pizza is loaded with fresh vegetables, marinara sauce, low-fat cheese and cooked on a delicious whole grain pita. You can use any type of pita bread that’s available to you, and feel free to switch up the veggies. It’s a quick and easy meal, perfect for a weeknight or even for lunch. This is a fun way to eat pizza without feeling guilty afterwards, plus you’re getting a healthy serving of veggies, too.
Veggie Pita Pizza
makes 1 pizza
- 1 6-inch pita pocket
- 3 Tbsp marinara sauce
- 1/4 cup mozzerella and/or parmesan cheese, divided in half
- handful of fresh spinach, chopped
- 3/4 cup of veggies of your choice, thinly sliced or chopped
- optional: pinch of red pepper flakes
- Preheat your oven to 425ºF. Lightly grease a baking sheet with cooking spray and set aside.
- Spoon the marinara sauce onto your pita and spread around in an even layer. Sprinkle with half of your cheese. Layer on your spinach and veggies, and top off with remaining cheese and optional red pepper flakes.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until cheese is fully melted and edges of crust are golden-brown. Let cool slightly before eating and enjoy:)