From the ashes

by Shawnda on June 15, 2007

in On the grill

I consider myself above-average around the grill. For a girl. But given the right balance of margarita and scatterbrained-ness, I can also turn dinner into a pile of ashes in two minutes flat.

I had been looking forward to pizza on the grill for days. I’ve been slaving in the office for the last several weeks so, rather than cutting out early one afternoon and making homemade pizza dough, I just picked up a pack of ready-made pizza dough from the store. And then I burned it terribly, completely beyond recognition.

So learning from my mistakes, here are a few tips to grill your pizza successfully:


    1. Don’t drink when you’re grilling.
    Scratch that – that’s no fun.


    1. Don’t drink when you’re grilling alone.
    Have a “Quick! Hand-me-that” helper around.

    2. Use non-stick spray or olive oil to coat the rack – before lighting the grill because your pizza crust will hang on for dear life if you do not.

    3. Have everything ready to go and have it in prep bowls or on plates right next to your grill – you will have no time to run in and shred cheese or pick and wash fresh basil.

    4. Do not walk away, do not turn your back
    – the crust will cook pretty quickly and need to be flipped and topped.

I was able to save a few bites of one pizza and darn, was it good! I ended up scraping the toppings off of the pizzas and eating a pile of veggies and cheese for dinner followed by a dessert of a handful of peanut M&Ms and homemade spicy strawberry ice cream. Not bad for a disaster :)

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{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Janet June 15, 2007 at 6:33 am

I’ve made pizza on the grill many times, I agree with your list, but I have another tip to add: #5 Pre-cook your toppings – the crust cooks so fast, if you are putting green pepper etc on your pizza it won’t have to time to cook, only heat up.

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2 Susan from Food "Blogga" June 15, 2007 at 8:24 am

Aw, that’s too bad. A wasted pizza is a true pity, isn’t it? Course, you made me laugh. We’re moving to a place soon that has a community grill, and I can’t wait to use it! I’ll be heeding your warnings!

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3 Deborah June 15, 2007 at 8:31 am

My husband won’t even let me close to the grill. That is HIS domain. At least that way if things go wrong I can always blame him!!

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4 Abby June 15, 2007 at 11:13 am

The one thing my husband have not yet bought as a married couple is a grill! Which is a bummer, esp. right now in the summer, because I’d love some grilled pizza and veggies. I see a near-future purchase! (My big dilemma: electric or gas?)

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5 Katerina June 15, 2007 at 11:29 am

hahah, fabulous! I had a little kitchen fire the other day so I know how you feel. (Apparently the smoking point of olive oil really is lower then I thought.)

I would say when you try grilled pizza again do simple toppings that don’t have to be very cooked, fresh tomatoes, basil, mozzarella etc. The other thing I do is make mini pizzas because it gives you more time to experiment – if the first few don’t work you will learn enough that the last few will!

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6 foodiebride June 15, 2007 at 12:36 pm

I didn’t think about cooking some of the veggie toppings first – great tip! We’re a “charcoal” house and I guess I just didn’t realize just how quickly the dough would cook over medium coals. If I had broken it into mini pizzas, I would have (quickly) seen my error and still had pizza for dinner :) There will be a next time, though!

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7 Cynthia June 15, 2007 at 6:18 pm

Too funny and all the warnings have been duly noted :)

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8 Nora B June 16, 2007 at 6:16 pm

You are very lucky – I am not even allowed near the grill/bbq! It’s HIS territory ;-)

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9 Kristen June 18, 2007 at 8:35 am

I keep asking my hubby to teach me how to grill, but I bet it is things like this that makes him not want to.
Grilled pizza would be yummy!

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