Creamy Spinach Artichoke Pizza

$5.14 recipe / $1.71 serving
by Beth - Budget Bytes
4.91 from 22 votes
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I’m starting a difficult challenge tomorrow where I’m going to attempt to eat only $4.50 worth of food per day. I remember how hungry I was last year during the SNAP challenge, so I kind of wanted to have one last indulgent hurrah just before I started the challenge. What’s the best indulgent food, IMHO? Pizza, of course. Creamy Spinach Artichoke Pizza, to be specific.

Overhead view of a Creamy Spinach Artichoke Pizza cooked in a cast iron pan, title text at the top

What’s In This Spinach Artichoke Pizza:

This isn’t just any pizza. This is a thick crust, crispy edged, pan pizza topped with a rich and creamy spinach sauce, chopped up artichoke hearts, and a final layer of melted mozzarella cheese. Think pizza topped with spinach artichoke dip, then baked to melty perfection. 

What Kind of Pizza Dough to Use:

I decided to make this pizza with the no-knead pan crust, which needs to be started the night before, but you could always do this on a regular pizza crust, or even a super fast thin crust. The toppings on this pizza are so good that you can literally put it on any crust.

Do I Have to Use A Cast Iron Skillet?

No, that is only one option for this pizza. I used a 10-inch lodge skillet, but these toppings are enough for a 12-inch pan pizza, or even a 14-inch regular crust pizza. You can bake your pizza on a regular pizza pan, a pizza stone, or even on a square baking sheet.

Creamy Spinach Artichoke Pizza in a cast iron skillet, one slice removed
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Creamy Spinach Artichoke Pizza

4.91 from 22 votes
A rich and garlicky spinach cream sauce, artichoke hearts, and melty mozzarella make this thick crust Spinach Artichoke Pizza ultra indulgent!
Servings 3 (2 slices each)
Prep 12 hours
Cook 25 minutes
Total 12 hours 25 minutes




  • 1/2 lb. frozen chopped spinach ($0.85)
  • 1 Tbsp butter ($0.10)
  • 1 clove garlic ($0.08)
  • 4 oz. cream cheese ($1.00)
  • 1/2 cup milk ($0.19)
  • 1/4 tsp salt ($0.02)


  • 1 Tbsp cooking oil ($0.02)
  • 1/2 15oz. can artichoke hearts ($1.30)
  • 1 pinch crushed red pepper (optional) ($0.05)
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella ($1.00)
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  • Begin the dough the night before. In a large bowl stir together the flour, salt, and yeast. Combine the olive oil and 3/4 cup water, then pour it into the bowl with the flour. Stir until a single (slightly wet and sticky) ball of dough forms with no dry flour left on the bottom of the bowl. Add one to two tablespoons more of water, if needed, to form a ball of dough. Loosely cover the dough and let it sit at room temperature for 12-18 hours.
  • The next day let the spinach thaw and then squeeze out as much moisture as possible. Preheat the oven to 450ºF and pour 1 Tbsp of cooking oil into a 10 or 12-inch cast iron skillet. Spread the oil around the skillet, including up the side walls.
  • To make the sauce, mince the garlic and add it to a small pot along with the butter. Sauté the butter and garlic for 1-2 minutes over medium-low heat, or until the garlic is soft and fragrant. Add the cream cheese, milk, and salt to the butter and garlic. Whisk and cook over medium-low heat until the cream cheese has melted into the milk and a thick sauce forms (3-5 minutes). Finally, stir the squeeze-dried spinach into the sauce, breaking up any clumps as you stir. Remove the sauce from the heat and set aside.
  • Use the excess oil from the skillet to coat your hands, then scrape the fermented dough out of the bowl. Gently press and stretch the loose dough into the skillet until it evenly covers the bottom.
  • Spread the creamy spinach sauce over the dough, covering from edge to edge. Drain the artichoke hearts, give them a rough chop, then sprinkle over the creamy spinach sauce. Add a pinch of red pepper flakes, if desired. Finally, top the pizza with the shredded mozzarella.
  • Bake the pizza in the fully preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until the edges are sizzling and the top is golden brown. Remove the pizza from the oven and slide a butter knife around the edges to loosen any melted cheese. Either slide the whole pizza onto a cutting board or carefully slice the pizza in the pan. Cut into six slices and serve.

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Serving: 1ServingCalories: 794.33kcalCarbohydrates: 88.07gProtein: 27.7gFat: 37.67gSodium: 1864.57mgFiber: 12.87g
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How to Make Spinach Artichoke Pizza – Step by Step Photos

Shaggy No-Knead Bread Dough

If you’re using the pan pizza dough that I used above, begin the night before. In a large bowl (or pot) stir together 2 cups flour, 1 tsp salt, and 1/8 tsp instant or “bread machine” yeast. Combine 1 Tbsp olive oil and 3/4 cup water, then pour it into the bowl with the flour. Stir until a sticky ball of dough forms with no dry flour left on the bottom of the bowl. If needed, add one to two more tablespoons of water to help it come together in one single piece of dough.

Fermented Dough

Loosely cover the dough (that’s why I like using a pot, I just set the lid on slightly crooked) and let it sit at room temperature for 12-18 hours. As it ferments it will spread out and get very bubbly. It will still be quite sticky compared to most bread doughs.

Bag of Frozen Spinach

On the day you’re making the pizza, take 1/2 lb. of frozen spinach out of the freezer to thaw (thaw at room temp, or in the microwave for a faster thaw).

Squeeze Dried Spinach in a bowl

Once the spinach is thawed, squeeze as much moisture out as possible. I just grab a handful and squeeeeze until no more liquid comes out.

Butter and garlic in a sauce pot

Next it’s time to make the sauce (and begin preheating the oven to 450 degrees). Mince one clove of garlic. Add it to a small pot along with 1 Tbsp of butter. Sauté the garlic in the butter over medium-low heat until the garlic is soft and fragrant (about 1-2 minutes).

Milk, cream cheese, and salt added to sauce pot

Add 1/2 cup milk, 4 oz. cream cheese, and 1/4 tsp salt to the butter and garlic. Continue to cook over medium-low heat, while whisking, until the cream cheese has melted in and a thick sauce has formed.

FinishedSpinach Cream Sauce in the sauce pot

Add the squeeze dried spinach to the cream sauce and stir until it’s combined (break up any clumps of spinach as you stir). Remove the sauce from the heat and set it aside.

Pizza dough in the cast iron skillet

Spread 1 Tbsp vegetable oil in a 10 or 12-inch cast iron skillet (including up the sides). Use the excess oil in the skillet to coat your hands, then scrape the dough out of its bowl. Carefully stretch and press the dough into the skillet until it evenly covers the bottom.

Spinach Cream Sauce on Dough

Spread the spinach cream sauce over the dough from edge to edge.

Chopped Artichoke Hearts

Drain one 15oz. can of artichoke hearts. Take half of the can and give them a rough chop (the other half can be frozen or used for a second pizza).

Artichoke Hearts added to unbaked pizza

Sprinkle the chopped artichoke hearts over the pizza. If you like things a little spicy like me, sprinkle on a few red pepper flakes.

Mozzarella added to pizza

Finally, top with one cup of shredded mozzarella.

Baked Creamy Spinach Artichoke Pizza in the cast iron skillet

Bake the Creamy Spinach Artichoke Pizza for 20-25 minutes, or until the edges are sizzling and the top is golden brown. Use a butter knife to loosen around the edges where cheese may have melted onto the skillet. Slide the pizza onto a cutting board or carefully slice it while in the pan.

Close up of the baked and sliced Creamy Spinach Artichoke Pizza, with one slice missing

Cut the Creamy Spinach Artichoke Pizza into six pieces and serve! This is pretty rich and filling, so two pieces go a lot further than you think. ;)

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    1. You could. Just cook about 1lb fresh spinach and make sure you squeeze/drain away all liquid before adding.

  1. Beth your recipes are fantastic!!! I just read this one after reading your spinach artichoke dip recipe in the most recent I received.

  2. Hi,

    I’m going to make this tonight/tomorrow. I was wondering if I should use warm, cold or room temperature water to make the dough?

    Thank you!

  3. Oh my this was good. My husband was not super excited about this when I described it to him, but after finishing his half he threw down his napkin and said “DAMN that was good.” So, I think this one’s a winner! I forgot to start the dough the night before and started it in the morning instead. I put it in the oven with the light on all day to rise, and I think it worked out. It might not have been quite as fluffy as if I had started it at the right time, but it was still great.

    I strayed a little and added some grated parmesan to the top, but I wouldn’t do that again. It got quite brown and dry before the pizza was done, but that was my fault.

    I’m so excited to try more of your pizza recipes!

  4. This is one of my absolute favorite meals to make and hands down my favorite pizza. My meat-eating roommate complained when he realized it was meat-free but shut up after a couple of bites. This is also really good the next day! I make this regularly but ended up using a Mexican cheese blend tonight because I was out of mozzarella. I am excited to see how it turns out!
    Thank you for all of your amazing recipes!

  5. Oh man, that sauce is amazing. I made this with the thin crust recipe (linked to above). And since I don’t have a cast iron skillet, I just used a regular baking sheet and cooked it for only 7 minutes or so. It was awesome! A nice change from regular pizza.

  6. I think I’ve finally found a way to marry my desire to save money and eat home cooked meals with my husband’s undying love for pizza. He says if this is the kind of pizza we can make at home, he’s totally done with inferior delivery pizza. :D This dish was rich and surprising filling. I “budgeted” for us to have two pieces each, but we were both pretty stuffed after one each (cut it into six pieces). We had it with your Tomato Herb Soup, and they were delicious together. I’m even more excited at how versatile this recipe will be in the future. I’m already planning another pizza with similar toppings to your Italian Flat Bread. Thanks again for your amazing recipes. I’ve never given much thought to making pizza at home on my own. If I had known it was this easy I’d have done it ages ago!