29 Alternative Pizza Sauce Ideas
Looking to take family pizza night to the next level? Curious about how you can experiment with your pizza sauce choices? Me too! I’ve been brainstorming and researching like crazy. Here are twenty-nine different ideas for pizza sauce to get you started.
1. Vegan white pizza sauce
Not interested in experiencing nutritional yeast? Neither am I. That’s why I thought this dairy-free version would be great for the vegan camp. It’s a vegan white pizza sauce made with coconut milk and pureed roasted garlic. This sounds like something I could definitely get into. These folks have it paired with sun-dried tomatoes.
2. Olive oil, zaatar and minced garlic pizza sauce
I’ve been dying to try a Middle East themed pizza. My idea? Mixing dried zaatar (a regional spice spelled numerous ways in translation) with olive oil and minced garlic to brush on the fresh crust. I used to buy hot flatbreads in Kuwait all the time with a similar concoction brushed on. So I’m confident it would work well on pizza. If you feel like going fresh with it however, I found this recipe for zaatar pesto from GreenProphet.Com sounds amazing. It’s made with fresh versions of all the herbs found in traditional zaatar powder.
3. Green pizza sauce
Since any sauce you enjoy eating can conceivably be used as a pizza sauce, why not go with a green one? Pace carries a green salsa with chilies, but I’m sure there are others. Top with shrimp or chopped cooked chicken legs and snip up some cilantro. You’ll have an unusual light pizza that’s big on style.
4. Olive oil and rosemary focaccia sauce
Chop lots of rosemary into some olive oil and add freshly ground sea salt and black pepper to taste. Brush on the crust and top with black olives and grated Asiago.
5. Garlic puree
A tasty way to get your garlic and use up the extras. Set aside a few heads when you roast your next batch and store your garlic puree in a jar. Add other seasonings to taste with a little olive oil. Use as a pizza sauce and choose creative toppings.
6. Creamy Caesar dressing
Looking to take your chicken pizza to the next level? This might be just the solution. Add some chopped fresh herbs and perhaps some black olives to round out the pie.
7. Sweet chili sauce
Try this pizza sauce idea with shrimp or any other food you normally enjoy sweet chili sauce with as a topping. Great for an international themed party where you want to keep the munchies affordable.
I whisk them up raw and use them to “sauce” a breakfast pizza. Add toppings such as turkey sausage, scallions, chopped ham or bacon. When I’m running low on ideas for cooked ham recipes, this is one of my favorite things to make.
9. Curry pizza sauce
Think of your favorite curry combination. Then think how it might apply I the form of pizza toppings. My mind immediately goes to several Thai varieties, but you might prefer a combination inspired by the Indian subcontinent.
10. Tofu ricotta
This is another one for those in the vegan camp who love white pizza, but don’t want the dairy. Top as you normally would for a white pizza.
11. Thai peanut sauce
One of my favorite pizzas to make is a knock-off of the Thai chicken pizza from Sweet Tomatoes restaurant. Use this recipe for Thai peanut sauce in a blender, and top with chopped cooked chicken legs and scallions. You could also use cilantro in place of the scallions.
12. Mushroom tapenade
The meaty taste of mushrooms will really make for a tasty pizza sauce. Decide which thickness works for you, and adjust accordingly. Here’s a recipe for mushroom tapenade to get you started.
13. Romesco pizza sauce
For those who have trouble eating tomatoes, romesco sauce, made from roasted peppers is a nice alternative. Whip up a batch to try on your next family pizza night.
14. Taco sauce
For those who want a taco theme for their next pizza, but find the bean dip option a bit heavy, try taco sauce. It’s flavorful, light and can be purchased affordably with a coupon.
When it comes to anything Mediterranean, I’m easily sold. Here’s a plan for a hummus-based pizza that you can top with anything Middle Eastern. Yummo.
16. Carrot puree
I’ll be honest. I might like to season this one differently. If you are one of those people that just can’t handle tomatoes though, it might be for you. Here’s a carrot puree pizza sauce from the French Fries to Flax Seeds blog.
17. Ranch pizza sauce
If you love the flavor of ranch and the simplicity of pouring pizza sauce out of a bottle, this will likely fall on your list of faves. Pair with chicken, bacon and frozen spinach.
Dairy lovers will love this simple solution. Use jarred Alfredo sauce from the grocery store. You’ll still have enough left over for pasta night, as it will only take a bit to spread on for the base of your pizza. Top with chicken and mushrooms.
19. Hot wing sauce
Buffalo chicken pizza rocks my world! For further instructions, check out Linsey Knerl’s article on boneless hot wing flavored recipes. You’ll find instructions for pizza assembly, hot wing soup and more.
20. Barbecue pizza sauce
You can use barbecue sauce as a base to numerous topping combinations, but one of my favorites is chicken and mushroom with shredded block mozzarella.
21. Bean dip
We used to enjoy a Southwest flavored pizza we could get at the grocery store in Arizona for nights we didn’t want to cook. It had refried pinto beans as the sauce and was topped with chopped chicken, black beans, cilantro and taco cheese. We’d add hot sauce to jazz it up. You can create your own version of this by simply using bean dip or thinning out a batch of refried beans with a little milk or water.
Any type of pesto would apply here. In addition to traditional or sun-dried tomato pesto, try this homemade cilantro pesto to mix things up a bit. Top with thawed frozen shrimp or those bags of mixed fish as a cheap seafood strategy.
23. Organic tomato pasta sauce
Canned organic pizza sauce is more than double the price per ounce than the organic marinara sauce I can get in glass jars where I shop. When I don’t feel like making my own, I use a little bit of the pasta sauce from the jar. There’s still plenty left over for spaghetti night.
24. Olive tapenade
I’m always up for more options on the Mediterranean eating front, and this recipe for olive tapenade is no exception. Try it as a pizza sauce and use simple, limited toppings to fully celebrate the flavor.
25. Squash sauce
26. Salsa with corn and black beans
Use your favorite salsa as a pizza sauce base, and top with canned corn, black beans and leftover chicken with chopped cilantro for a fresh, healthy pizza that’s not too heavy.
27. Sesame pizza sauce
Go even more international on pizza night by putting an Asian style sesame sauce on your Italian pizza pie. Top with shitake mushrooms and the green element of your choice. Here’s another recipe for a sesame-soy pizza sauce.
28. Onion and garlic jam
Who knew they even made onion and garlic jam? Now that it’s on my radar however, it has my mental taste buds turning over. Try this pizza sauce idea with thinly sliced beef and spinach.
29. Garlicky white bean sauce
Cook some extra cannellini beans the next time you whip up a batch and keep them on hand for this third vegan alternative to a traditional white pizza. White bean sauce would be a great backdrop to toppings with more color or contrast, such as chopped parsley, beef and mushrooms.
Related Reading: For more affordable pizza ideas, check out Sonja’s post on gluten-free pizza crust, Linsey’s hack for affordable gourmet pizza, Thursday Bram’s tasty but cheap traditional pizza sauce recipe, and my personal bulk dry mix recipe for homemade pizza crust.
Do you have a favorite or unusual idea for pizza sauce? Share your link with us below so everyone can enjoy.