Inspired by a classic coastal appetizer, this tasty Clams Casino Grilled Pizza will quickly become your new go-to for backyard cookouts...
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of SeaPak. All opinions & text expressed below are 100% my own.
Let me introduce you all to new summertime obsession- grilled pizzas! Homemade pizza is usually on our meal plan rotation at least once or twice a month, but I usually pop them in the oven to bake. But with the temps (& humidity) rising more and more each day as we inch closer and closer to the official start of summer, I decided to try something new with our usual pizza night a couple of weeks ago. I left the oven off and cranked on the gas grill instead. I have to confess that I was totally nervous about grilling my first pizza. I was scared that I would burn it or that the dough would fall through the grill grates, or that I would scorch the outside of the pizza crust while the inside remained all doughy. But nope! It was crazy easy and just as quick if not quicker than traditional oven pizza baking. :)
This particular grilled pizza was inspired by a classic coastal appetizer that is said to have originated in 1917 at a casino (thus the name) in Rhode Island. Traditional Clams Casino consists of clams on the half shell that are topped with bread crumbs, butter, and bacon and then are baked or broiled. For this Clams Casino Grilled Pizza, I kept all of the traditional elements of the original recipe but threw it all on a pizza crust and added a homemade white pizza sauce and fresh bell peppers. Since the SeaPak Clam Strips come already breaded, there was no need to throw bread crumbs on top. I just love ingredients that can serve dual purposes in a recipe! :)
Clams Casino Grilled Pizza
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Ingredients (Serves 4)
- 1/2 Family Size package (10 oz) of SeaPak Clam Strips (cooked according to package directions)
- 3-5 slices of bacon, cooked (CLICK HERE to get my method for baking perfectly crisp bacon)
- 1/2 cup red & yellow bell peppers, diced
- Your favorite homemade or store bought pizza dough (enough for a 12 inch pizza)
- 1 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 tbsp flour
- 1/2 cup half & half
- Pinch of Kosher salt & black pepper
- 1 small garlic clove, minced
- 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
Cook the SeaPak Clam Strips according to the package directions. Cook your bacon to your preference, allow to cool, and then roughly chop. Set both aside once cooked.
Using a rolling pin or your hands stretch the pizza dough out into a 10-12 inch circle on a lightly floured surface. Don't stretch it too thin! You need the dough to be thick enough to sit on top of a grill grate without falling through.
In a small saucepan, heat the butter over medium heat. Once melted, add in the flour & cook for 30-45 seconds. Slowly whisk in the half & half. Then stir in the salt & pepper, garlic, & mozzarella cheese. Heat another 2-3 minutes until the cheese has melted and the sauce has thickened slightly.
Heat your grill over medium-high heat.
Once heated, place the prepared pizza dough on the grill. (Feel free to use a piece of aluminum foil coated with olive oil over the grill grate.) Cook for 2-3 minutes on one side, then flip over.
Once the dough has been flipped, quickly spread the white pizza sauce over the cooked dough side. Then top with the clam strips, chopped bacon, and diced bell peppers. Cook on the grill with the lid on for an additional 3-5 minutes. Be sure to check it every minute or so to make sure the bottom crust doesn't get scorched!
Remove from the grill and allow to rest for 5 minutes. Slice and serve.
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Did you all know that the USDA recommends that you and each member of your family eat at least two 4-ounce servings of seafood each week? With SeaPak, it is easy to add seafood to all of your family's favorite summertime recipes with their super convenient & quick seafood products.
New to grilling pizzas? I was too! But here are a few tips to make sure your first pizza grilling experience is a successful one...
- Don't roll out the pizza dough too thin! I would suggest about a 1/2 inch or so thickness. You want the dough sturdy enough to not fall through the grill grates, but not so thick that the inside of the pizza dough doesn't get cooked all the way through.
- You need the grill to be hot from the second you throw the pizza dough on it. Make sure the grill temperature is at least 550-600 degrees before placing the dough on.
- Have your toppings ready to go before placing the dough on the grill! Once you flip the pizza crust, you will want to get the toppings on asap as the pizza will cook through very quickly at that point. I placed the chopped peppers & bacon, the baked clam strips, and the already prepared sauce on a large tray that I carried out to the grill when I initially placed the dough on the grill.
- If you are afraid that your pizza dough will slip through the grates (like I was), feel free to lay down a large piece of aluminum foil brushed lightly with olive oil over the grates after you have heated the grill. It worked perfectly, and the pizza still had that great grilled flavor & texture.
What are your best tips for grilling pizza?
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