One of those flavorful herbs, basil goes great with a fresh pizza slice. This herb can be utilized to flavor pizza in a variety of ways, from a herby margarita to a zingy chicken pizza topped with fresh basil.
But when should basil be added to a pizza? Since they will wilt (or crisp) and develop a slightly bitter flavor if heated, it is preferable to add fresh basil leaves after the pizza has been cooked. To bring out the subtle herbiness of the marinara sauce, dried basil should be combined with it and cooked with the pizza.
Make sure you add your toppings at the proper moment to get the best flavor if you’re making gorgeous artisan pizzas at home! To learn all there is to know about when to put basil on a pizza, continue reading.
Why Put Basil On A Pizza?
Basil is one of those herbs that is all too easy to overlook. It is such a significant flavoring in so many different sorts of cooking and dishes that we often overlook its importance.
Basil has a distinct flavor and perfume that is unlike any other herb. It’s difficult to define how it tastes, but it lends a hint of summertime flavor to salads, sauces, and, of course, pizza!
This delightful herb has a strong perfume that will complement the flavor of your pizza. Nothing beats the aroma of freshly baked pizza, with its aromatic herbs, zingy marinara sauce, and bubbling golden cheese tantalizing your taste buds!
How Is Basil Used On Pizza?
Basil can be utilized in numerous ways on pizza. This herb is commonly accessible fresh, dried, and as a flavoring agent in basil-infused oils. Basil can be utilized alone or in combination with other dry herbs. It can be combined with the marinara sauce used to cover the pizza’s crust or sprinkled over the pizza’s toppings.
Additionally, chopped fresh basil can be added to the marinara sauce. The pizza could also be garnished with whole or torn basil leaves prior to serving.
Oils flavored with basil are frequently drizzled over pizza to impart a flavor that is both subtle and delicious. It is essential to know the type of basil to use and when to add it to a pizza while preparing the perfect pie. Basil is a crucial element in numerous types of pizza, but it must be utilized properly to be truly appreciated.
What Does Basil Taste Like On A Pizza?
Whether basil is added before or after cooking a pizza can have a significant impact on the final product’s flavor and texture. After the pizza has been baked, fresh basil leaves are frequently added as a garnish.
The heat from the pizza will cause them to wilt slightly, but they will still taste and feel fresh. In this context, fresh basil leaves complement the savory marinara sauce and melty cheese beautifully.
The fresh basil leaves put to a pizza before baking will change significantly in both taste and texture. When basil is cooked, part of its inherent sweetness is lost, and it may take on a bitter flavor. It may also lose its vivid green hue as it softens and wilts.
When used as a topping instead of being mixed into the marinara sauce, the slightly bitter flavor of dried basil becomes more pronounced. This is why fresh basil is best used as a garnish and dried basil is best used in the sauce.
When To Put Basil On A Pizza
Don’t worry if you’re uncertain about when to add basil to a pizza. Here is the definitive guide to when to use fresh or dried basil on pizza, as well as when to use basil-infused oils.
There is only one way to add fresh basil to a pizza, in our opinion, and that is as a garnish after the pizza has been cooked. This is the best way to keep the basil’s fresh zingy flavor, slightly crunchy texture, and brilliant green color.
It is totally up to you whether or not to utilize your basil leaves whole. A garnish of entire basil leaves adds a pop of color to a cooked pizza. You can also split them into smaller pieces and distribute them over the pizza.
If you wish to cook basil with your pizza, cut it and blend it with the marinara sauce. This will impart a lovely herby flavor to the sauce! Don’t be tempted to top your pizza with whole or chopped basil leaves before baking it.
When fresh basil is exposed to heat, it immediately wilts within minutes. This can cause the leaves to become bitter, which will not go well with your perfectly made pizza. The only exception to this rule is if you have a wood-fired oven in which to cook your pizza.
These ovens reach so high temperatures that pizzas can be cooked in minutes. This implies that you could combine fresh basil with your other toppings and the flavor would be unaffected by the quick cooking time. For millennia, pizza has been prepared in this manner in Italy – we see no reason to break this norm!
On a pizza, dried basil is utilized considerably differently than fresh basil. Unlike fresh basil, dried basil contains a subtle bitterness that is not present in fresh basil. The most effective approach to include dried basil into pizza is to blend it with the marinara sauce. The fine, dry flakes will absorb the marinara’s liquid and impart their taste to the sauce.
While some dried herbs (like oregano) taste fantastic when sprinkled over a pizza, we do not recommend doing so with dried basil. The pizza’s slightly bitter, dried basil flavor will intensify as it bakes in the oven.
Infusing oil with basil is a terrific method to add a bright, herbal taste to pizzas. However, there is a time and a place for using both fresh and dried basil. Virgin or extra-virgin olive oil is the base for most infused oils. Because of a potential for flavor alteration at high temperatures, these oils should not be used for cooking.
So, if you want to add some basil flavor to your pizza, you can do so by drizzling some basil-infused oil over the toppings either right before serving or in the last few minutes of cooking. Here’s a variety pack of infused oils to try out on your salads, pizzas, pastas, and other dishes.
How To Use Basil On Different Types Of Pizza
Confused about when to utilize different types of basil? Don’t worry, we have some excellent serving options as well as the proper approach to incorporate basil in a variety of pizzas.
The ultimate classic pizza recipe is Margherita pizza. A thin, crispy pizza base is covered with fresh marinara sauce, pieces of delicious mozzarella, and sweet, juicy tomato slices.
There is just one way to add basil to Margherita pizza: garnish it with whole basil leaves on top of the baked pizza. They should be placed amid the hot, bubbling mozzarella chunks, allowing them to wilt beautifully into your delectable pizza slices.
Caprese pizza is extremely similar to Margherita pizza, with the addition of a balsamic glaze. We recommend topping this pizza with freshly shredded basil leaves. In addition to your balsamic glaze, you may also use an oil infused with basil for a more powerful basil flavor.
The Pizza Melanzane is a scrumptious and luxurious treat! Mozzarella cheese and sautéed eggplant slices top this classic Italian pizza. To highlight the pizza’s herby flavor without overpowering the subtle toppings, we recommend brushing some dried basil over the tomato foundation.
On a base of fiery tomatoes, thin slices of cooked ham are placed on top of pizza prosciutto. We advise using both dried and fresh basil on this pizza because the strong flavor can handle a solid hit of it.
To give the tomato sauce a herby flavor, add dried basil. To finish the pizza, sprinkle it with freshly shredded basil leaves. Serve a dish of basil-infused oil on the side for the crusts if you want to go basil-crazy!
Pollo Ad Astra Pizza
Chicken and basil are excellent taste partners, and adding a handful of shredded fresh basil leaves to a Pollo ad Astra pizza for the last few of minutes of cooking time is an excellent way to combine them.