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Socketed Frozen Pizza


Frozen food is cheap, easy to keep on hand, and can be tasty. However, what it lacks is that fresh taste that makes something a complete meal. Now… it’s not like what I’m about to say is some secret, however I don’t think it is widely appreciated that frozen cheese pizza is like a socketed item from an RPG—nothing special on its own, but a base you can take in any number of directions to unlock its potential.

On Pizza Selection

We want a middle tier frozen pizza. Think Jack’s, Red Baron, or Tombstone. The cheapest frozen pizzas (Celeste, Totino’s) aren’t bad for what they are, but they don’t really taste like pizza, do they? While the expensive frozen pizzas are good but you’re paying for fancy bread and the brand name, neither of which serve our purposes here.


Preheat oven per frozen pizza directions.

Slice an onion. Unwrap pizza, then spread slices liberally over pizza.

Put pizza in the oven. Cook for the duration listed on the instructions. I recommend broiling for the last few minutes instead of baking. When you add ingredients to the top of the pizza it throws off the balance intended by the manufacturer, so the bread gets over-baked before the top has begun to brown. We can restore balance by broiling for the last few minutes.

Meanwhile, rinse and drain arugula. I think it’s called “rocket” in other countries? Squeeze a small amount of lemon juice over top, then toss.

When the pizza is done, remove from oven. This usually isn’t an issue with onion—moreso when you start to add other vegetables to the pizza—but sometimes there is a significant amount of water pooled on top. I find it easy to gently tip the pizza over the sink and allow the water to simply run off. You could also sponge it up with a paper towel.

Drizzle olive oil over the pizza, for example in a spiral pattern. Cut the pizza into slices. Pile arugula on top, roughly a small handful for each slice. Serve.

Ingredient list

  • Frozen cheese pizza
  • Onion
  • Arugula
  • Lemon
  • Olive oil


This is a basic variation that is quick to prep and relies mostly on ingredients that I already have stocked in my pantry. Arugula is really the only thing I have to make a point to get. On its own, Arugula can be a little bitter, so we add the lemon to both mask that bitterness and to give the dish a slight sour note (this is what really seals the “fresh” taste).

The real point of this recipe isn’t to make it exactly as I do, but to help you picture what can be done. Take from it what you will.