Filled with melted cheese and flavorful pesto, your whole family will love these easy-to-eat pizza rolls. I love to make a batch of these nutrient-packed rolls to have on hand for easy lunches and snacks, especially since they freeze and reheat so well. And while the end result looks a little fancy, trust me when I tell you that you don’t need any special skills to make this recipe!
My 3-year-old isn’t so interested in leafy greens when served up cooked or in a salad, but she does love pesto. A while back I realized that I could pack basil pesto with a lot of the kale growing in our garden and now, Kale Pesto is a go-to sauce for pizza and pasta.
The pizza dough in this recipe is made with whole wheat flour, ground flaxseed, and olive oil, which lends a nice elasticity, making it really easy to work with. You can even make it in the morning and put these rolls together after work in no time at all. Use your fingers to lightly stretch out the dough into a rectangle, no rolling pin required, and let it rest briefly while you gather the rest of your ingredients.
The very flavorful and bright green kale pesto goes on top of the dough, followed by shredded mozzarella cheese, and a sprinkle of Parmesan. I like to make a big double batch of pesto and store some in the freezer—it freezes really nicely for up to 3 months.
Roll up the dough, starting on one of the long sides, until you have a long spiral roll. The dough shouldn’t stick to the parchment (or your fingers), so this step is pretty easy.
Cut 1-inch slices and place each carefully into greased muffin tins. Try to make the slices flat, but don’t worry if they don’t fit perfectly—they’ll puff up nicely regardless!
After a quick bake in the oven, they are ready to cool and eat. You can serve them warm out of the oven or at room temperature in a packed lunch. You could even serve them with a little marinara sauce for dipping!
- 4 ounce mozzarella cheese
- 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese, grated
- 4 medium pear
- Place the yeast and sugar into the warm water (80-90° F) and stir gently to combine. Let sit for 5 minutes or until yeast is puffy.
- Meanwhile, combine the flours, flaxseed, salt, and olive oil in a large bowl.
- Add water and stir to combine, using clean hands to bring the dough together.
- Knead gently for one minute; the dough should be sticky. (If it seems dry or you have a hard time getting all of the flour into the dough ball, add a touch more water.)
- Let rest, covered with a kitchen towel, in a greased bowl for at least 1 hour and up to 6 hours.
- Place the kale into a large bowl and cover with very hot or boiling water. Let sit until wilted, about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Drain and let cool, then squeeze dry.
- Add the wilted kale to a food processor or high powered blender, along with the basil, juice from 1/2 a lemon, sunflower seeds, garlic, Parmesan, and 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
- Blend to combine, stopping to scrape down the sides of the container and adding more olive oil as you go to make a smooth and spreadable consistency. Season with salt to taste.
- Preheat the oven to 400° F and grease 2 muffin tins (you’ll need one full pan and 4 additional cups to make a total of 16 rolls).
- Use your hands to press the dough into an 11×16-inch rectangle on a piece of parchment paper. Let rest for about 10 minutes.
- Spread the pesto over the dough with a spatula, then sprinkle with mozzarella and Parmesan.
- Starting on one long side, roll the dough up carefully, making a spiral roll.
- Use a serrated knife to cut into 1-inch slices. Place each slice into a prepared muffin cup, and bake for 16-18 minutes until the dough is baked through and the tops are just starting to become golden.
- Remove from pan, using a knife around the edges if needed, and let cool slightly before serving.
- Serve with sliced pears.
I'm a registered dietitian, mom of 4, avid lover of food and strong promoter of healthy habits. Here you will find lots of delicious recipes full of fruits and veggies, tips for getting your kids to eat better and become intuitive eaters and lots of resources for feeding your family.Learn More about Natalie