Tapenade Pizza

Updated: Mar 7, 2019

Olive tapenade makes for a delicious pizza sauce!

Olive tapenade isn’t really a pizza sauce but I think it is so delicious that I wanted to make a main meal around it! Using the pizza dough from my previous post (listed below) or store bought dough, this pizza is so flavorful! The onions and peppers really complement the sauce. If you’re looking to give it more protein chicken sausage is a great addition! If you're making the dough from scratch use whole wheat or all purpose flour, my photos feature both.


Pizza dough

½ + 1/3 cups water

½ tsp yeast (if you are making it the same day you are making the pizza use 1 tsp of yeast)

1/8 cup olive oil

2 ½ cups flour (whole wheat or all purpose)

1 tsp salt


1 cup kalamata olives

¼ sun dried tomatoes

¼ cup cilantro

1 tsp garlic powder

2 Tbsp lemon juice


1 small sweet onion

1 Tbsp olive oil

1 tsp salt

1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar

2 Tbsp water

2/3 cup mozzarella cheese

½ yellow pepper

½ green pepper

Cilantro for garnish


(Skip down two paragraphs if using store bought pizza dough)

In either the bowl of a standing mixer, or regular bowl (if you are kneading by hand) add water, yeast, and olive oil. Let yeast dissolve for a couple minutes. Add the flour and salt and mix until the dough starts coming together. Mix the dough on low speed with your mixer for 5 minutes or until the dough becomes a smooth ball. If not using a mixer, knead on the countertop for 5 minutes or more until you get a smooth ball. Divide the dough into two equal portions and form into two balls. Grease a baking dish and place both the dough balls in the dish and cover with plastic wrap. If you are intending on using the dough that day, let the dough rise at room temperature for an hour to an hour and a half. You want the dough to be doubled. If you used half the yeast you can let the dough rise in the refrigerator for up to 3 days!

When ready to use remove from the refrigerator for at least an hour. Preheat your oven or grill between 450 to 500 degrees. Flour your countertop and rolling pin and roll out to the thinness you prefer!

Place the olives, sun dried tomatoes, cilantro, garlic powder and lemon juice in your food processor and blend until smooth. Place a pan on the stove on medium heat with the olive oil and add the chopped onion. Add the salt and allow to cook down for 5 minutes or until the onions start to get translucent. Add the balsamic vinegar and water and continue until all the liquid is cooked off. Shred the mozzarella and slice the peppers.

Oven: If baking in the oven place a cookie sheet in the oven while the oven is preheating. Place half the tapenade, mozzarella, peppers, onions, and sausage (if using) and carefully transfer it to the cookie sheet. Repeat with the second pizza. Check after 5 min and rotate if any parts of the crust are getting too dark. It should be done in 10-15 minutes depending on how thin you rolled it.

For the grill: Place the rolled out dough on your preheated grill. Let cook for 3-4 minutes covered on direct heat. Turn one side of your grill off and flip the pizza onto that side. Working quickly, top your pizza with half the tapenade, mozzarella, peppers, onions, and sausage (if using). Repeat with the second pizza and shut the grill with one side still on high and let all the cheese melt and the rest of the dough cook through for 6-7 minutes.

Top with cilantro, slice and enjoy!

Yields 2 medium size pizzas.

Author: Lucy Lafranchise

Photographer: Jack Klipfel