Spicy Brushed Crust Buffalo Chicken Pizza
Buffalo chicken pizzas often feature pre-cooked, cubed chicken breasts tossed in Buffalo sauce. While tasty, this can lead to flavor distribution issues when it comes to your toppings. Too few chunks? You may go a few bites without any chicken at all. Too many? The soggy, overloaded slice can’t stand up to the weight. Shredded chicken solves both of these problems. You can just roast a chicken breast, of course (for 30 minutes at 450°F/230°C), but if you use a pre-cooked rotisserie bird (our favorite move), there’s the added flavor bonus of dark meat, too. That makes this pizza a great use of leftover rotisserie chicken, but if you’re buying one specifically for the half bird this recipe requires, we’ve got you covered for what you can do with the rest.
This recipe from our friend, Virginia-based TikTok creator and viral birria pizza maker Amir Maghsoudi, bucks the traditional Buffalo sauce (⅔ cup melted butter to 1 cup Frank’s RedHot) in favor of one made with garlicky mayonnaise. (If you can’t find this at your local store, just add a teaspoon of finely minced garlic or purée to 60 grams of your favorite mayo.) Beyond the flavor boost, we find that the mayo helps keep the chicken moist as the pizza bakes. Amir’s recipe also calls for gorgonzola to stand in for Buffalo wings’ traditional blue cheese accompaniment and ups the ante on heat through the addition of sliced jalapeños and a post-bake brush of the crust with hot sauce.
Two 12-inch pizzas
10 minutes active time, 25 minutes total time
2 250-gram pizza dough balls
½ medium rotisserie chicken, shredded (about 17 ounces/ 500 grams)
¼ cup (60 grams) garlic mayonnaise (Mix 1 teaspoon of garlic purée with plain mayonnaise to make your own.)
¼ cup (80 grams) hot sauce (We used peri peri.)
1 cup (120 grams) shredded mozzarella
½ red onion, finely sliced
10 to 12 slices jarred jalapeño
~ 1 cup (100 grams) gorgonzola, crumbled
This recipe would suit a variety of pizza styles, but we think neo-Neapolitan, sourdough, or classic pizza dough would be a great fit. Make sure to prepare your dough ahead of time to ensure it rises at room temperature before firing up your oven.
Fire up your oven, aiming for 872°F (450°C) on the stone baking board inside. Use the infrared thermometer to measure the temperature quickly and easily.
Shred the chicken and then, in a large bowl, mix thoroughly with the garlic mayonnaise and ¾ of the hot sauce, reserving the remaining hot sauce for post-bake.
On a lightly floured surface, stretch out one dough ball to 12 inches and lay it over a lightly dusted pizza peel. Sprinkle an even layer of shredded mozzarella over the top. Scatter half of the sauced and shredded chicken evenly across the base. Top with red onion and jalapeño slices, and crumbled gorgonzola. (You can choose to add the gorgonzola post-bake if you prefer fresh blue cheese over cooked.)
Slide the pizza off the peel into the oven. Cook for 90 seconds, turning regularly (every 15 to 20 seconds or so) to ensure an even cook.Remove the pizza and lightly brush the crust with the remaining hot sauce. Add a dash of additional hot sauce if desired, then serve immediately. Repeat for the remaining pizza.