Do you still have fresh picked (or any) strawberries at home? If you do, this is the recipe that should be next on your list to make. It is light, sweet and highlights the taste and flavor of a fresh-picked summer strawberry.
Cream Cheese Icing: Yay or Nay?
I think I was in college when I first tasted fruit pizza. It was a traditional fruit pizza with sugar cookie crust, thick cream cheese icing and topped with whatever fruit we had on hand. I loved the idea of a fruit pizza, but the heaviness of the cream cheese (maybe I didn’t try the right recipe? Send me your favorites!) wasn’t my favorite. I grew up in a family full of chocolate-lovers who didn’t make a whole lot of “fruit-forward” desserts, so this was a new treat for me. I liked the taste. But I loved the idea of fruit pizza.
THIS RECIPE USING A LIGHTER WHIPPED FROSTING THAN THE TRADITIONAL CREAM CHEESE FROSTING
As years have passed, I have made fruit pizza a time or two. Traditionally fruit pizza is topped with cream cheese icing that is meant to help counter the sweetness of the sugar cookie and fruit on top. I sometimes think that it makes fruit pizza feel heavy so I decided in this Strawberry Fruit Pizza to use heavy whipping cream as the base for my sugar cookie topping. This was a very good idea.
The strawberry cream on top of this Strawberry Fruit Pizza is light, not overly sweet and provides the perfect richness and counterbalance to the sweet sugar cookie on the bottom and strawberries on top. I whip heavy whipping cream with a few Tablespoons of my favorite strawberry jam (we make ours homemade using Pomonas Universal Pectin, affiliate link) and a little bit of powdered sugar. You can add more or less sugar depending on how sweet you want your cream. I prefer the cream to be a little less sweet so it balances with the sweetness of the sugar cookie. The strawberry whipped cream is definitely the missing key to my idea of the perfect fruit pizza.
Fruit pizza is so Adaptable to what Fruit you have on hand
This particular fruit pizza recipe is made with strawberries in mind, but one of the things I love about fruit pizza is how adaptable it is. It would pair perfectly with other delicious fruit if you wanted to add blueberries, raspberries or any other favorite fruit for topping. I love it with freshly-picked strawberries because it highlights them so well, but I am also a big believer in adapting what you have in your kitchen and using up produce that is on its last legs.
Strawberry Fruit pizza can be made for a crowd or “personal” sized
Sometimes I want a fruit pizza that I can make for a crowd. Sometimes I like fruit pizza that each of my kids get to decorate or that would be perfect for a kids birthday or family party. I have included both variations of the recipes below. We like making a giant fruit pizza as a beautiful statement for a family Sunday dinner. Sometimes I’ll shape the fruit pizza into a rectangle and decorate as the American Flag on Independence Day. The options are endless. The smaller individual fruit pizzas would be great for a special treat after family pizza night or to freeze and pull out for anytime you have a hankering for a smaller version of fruit pizza.
Sugar Cookie DOugh Tips
One thing about the sugar cookie dough. This dough is a little bit sticky. I like to wet my hands before working with it to shape the dough into a giant circle if you are making a large fruit pizza. You can bake it on a pizza pan or a cookie sheet. Whatever way you choose to go, please line your pan with parchment paper before baking. It will save you in the long run and helps your cookie bake more evenly on the bottom. The sugar cookie will also spread quite a bit when baking, so be prepared. I also think this cookie tastes best a little under-baked, so don’t wait for the edges to get all brown but pull it out of the oven a little before that happens. One big fruit pizza usually takes about 20 minutes in my oven. The smaller fruit pizzas take about 13 minutes.
As always, the hardest part of this recipe is waiting for the sugar cookie to cool before decorating it. I like to leave it on the pan for about 5-10 minutes to let it set up a little before picking up the parchment paper and moving it to the counter. I’ve found this helps set the cookie and speed up the cooling process. Once it’s cooled you are a mere minutes away from the perfect fruit pizza. Yum!
Strawberry Fruit Pizza
Yield: 1 fruit pizza or 7-8 individual fruit pizzas
Time: 10 minute mix, 20-22 minute bake, 5 minute assemble
- ½ cup unsalted butter, softened
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1 ⅓ cups flour
- ½ cup heavy whipping cream
- 2 Tablespoons strawberry jam, your favorite brand
- 1 Tablespoon powdered sugar (more or less depending on the sweetness of your jam)
- Strawberries, sliced to decorate the fruit pizza
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- In a bowl with a mixing attachment or using a hand mixer, whip together the softened butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg and continue mixing for a few minutes until light and fluffy. Add the vanilla extract and mix again.
- In a separate bowl (or straight into the middle of the butter mixture if you don’t like washing two bowls), add the baking soda, salt and cream of tartar. If you put those directly into the butter mixture, mix it up at this time until incorporated. If you are using a separate bowl, add the flour to the bowl and then mix together.
- Add the flour mixture or flour (depending on the method you used) to the creamed butter and mix together until fully combined, about 1 minute.
- On a parchment lined baking sheet, mound the dough in the center of the baking sheet. Get your hands wet and press the dough into a thick circle. The more you spread the dough out, the less time it will need to bake. If you are using a pizza pan instead of mounded on a baking sheet, you will want to reduce the baking time to 10-12 minutes.
- Bake the cookie base for about 18-22 minutes. The bake time will depend on how spread out your dough is. Pull the cookie out of the oven just before it starts to brown on the edges (or is barely starting to brown).
- While the cookie base cools, whip up the topping. In a small bowl and using an electric mixer, whip the heavy whipping cream until stiff peaks are formed. Mix in a few Tablespoons of your favorite strawberry jam. Add a Tablespoon or more of powdered sugar depending on how sweet you like your cream.
- Slice fresh strawberries and set aside for topping the pizza.
- Once the cookie is cooled, decorate the fruit pizza with the whipped cream topping and strawberries on top. Enjoy!
Variation for Individual Fruit Pizzas:
- Follow the recipe through step 4.
- Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Mound two scoops of cookie dough on top of each other (see picture). Using a wet hand, lightly press down on the dough. Space cookies four to a pan.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 11-13 minutes. Let cool completely before topping. Enjoy!
Recipe Notes: The individual cookies freeze well in a Ziploc bag, so you can make fruit pizza whenever you want.
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