Tomato Basil Pizza Bread

by Allison @ Alli 'n Son on May 7, 2012

There are few things in life finer than the aroma of freshly baking bread.

It takes over your house.

It takes over your senses.

It takes over your life. At least, it takes over my life.

I’m slightly obsessive about making bread. I’ve destroyed 2.5 bread machines. I used them so much that they just up and died on me. In just over one year, I went through 2.5 bread machines.

It’s now been years since I’ve had one. And I miss it dearly. For a while I was dedicated to making bread (French, sourdough, English muffins, white whole wheat, pretzels) using my KitchenAid Stand Mixer, and then it came close to burning it out, and dediced to give the whole bread making thing a rest.

Except for making all kinds of pizza dough (beer batter, thin and crispy, Pioneer woman perfect pizza crust)  for our Friday night pizza pig out, the mixer enjoys cookies, muffins, cupcakes and brownies. It seems pretty happy with this arrangement.

And then, Secret Recipe Club assignments were sent out. And thus started my renewed obsession with baking bread.

Pizza Bread or Tomato Basil Bread

My poor KitchenAid Mixer, it didn’t see it coming.

Chris, half of the food bogging duo from The Keenan Cookbook has fueled my bread making addiction. One simple recipe, tomato basil bread, and it’s all coming back.

Tomato Basil Pizza Bread Recipe

The yeasty aroma filling the air.

The dough, rising, rising, rising.

The first bite into warm, crusty bread.

The favor explosion.

I’m obsessed. Again. I expect to see both eye rolls and applause from my family.

Pizza Bread or Tomato Basil Bread

This tomato basil bread, or as I’ve taken to call it, pizza bread, makes a killer grilled cheese sandwich. It’s the perfect crusty bread to wrap around a BLT. When it’s slathered with a thick layer of garlic butter, topped with parmesan and grilled, well, let’s just say it’s as close to heaven as bread can get.

P.S. I’m a litte sad because I just noticed that The Keenan Cookbook posted one amazing recipe for Snickerdoodles, my most favorite cookie after anything chocolate. They are Snickerdoodles filled with cream cheese. Oh yes, they are. If I had just a few more hours to my day, I totally would have made these too. Rest assured, they are on my list of recipes to try. 

Pizza Bread (Tomato Basil) Bread

Pizza Bread (Tomato Basil) Bread

Flavorful homemade tomato basil bread ( also known as pizza bread) for the best grilled cheese, BLT or garlic bread of your life.


  • 3/4 cup warm water (110 to 115 degrees )
  • 1 (1/4 ounce) package active dry yeast or 2-1/4 teaspoons dry yeast
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2-1/2 cups bread flour
  • 2 tablespoons dried basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, grated (the good kind)
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil


  1. In a glass measuring cup, combine the warm water, yeast and sugar. Whisk together with a fork and let rest for 5-10 minutes or until foamy.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook, mix together the bread flour, basil, red pepper flakes, salt and parmesan cheese.
  3. With the mixer on low, add in the yeast mixture, tomato paste and olive oil. Mix on low speed until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and forms a ball.
  4. Mix the dough on medium speed for 3-5 minutes, until smooth and elastic.
  5. Spray a bowl with nonstick spray, place the dough in the bowl, turning to coat all sides. Cover with plastic wrap.
  6. Let rise for 1 hour, or until doubled.
  7. Punch down the dough and knead by hand for one minute.
  8. Form a ball by pinching together the sides at the bottom, until the dough is smooth.
  9. Place on a baking stone or greased cookie sheet. Cover with plastic wrap lightly sprayed with nonstick spray. Let rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  10. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  11. Using a sharp knife, cut an "X" in the top of the dough.
  12. Bake for 35-40 minutes, until it is a golden red color and sounds hollow when you tap it.
  13. Cool before eating.


Recipe inspired by The Keenan Cookbook


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1 Amber | Bluebonnets & Brownies May 7, 2012 at 1:42 pm

Um wow. The minute I read your BLT suggestion, my mouth watered. And I’ve already eaten lunch! Absolutely fabulous SRC choice. I can’t wait to make it.

2 Sarah K. @ The Pajama Chef May 7, 2012 at 3:15 pm

ummm…making this now. literally. i can’t wait!

3 Allison @ Alli 'n Son May 7, 2012 at 9:08 pm

How did it turn out?

4 sarah k @ the pajama chef May 8, 2012 at 11:13 am

it is so good! i think i’ll be making grilled cheese or BLT on it tomorrow for lunch… if it lasts that long! :)

5 Micha @ Cookin' Mimi May 7, 2012 at 3:37 pm

Mmmm. I will be making this and soon. I had bread similar to this at Panera once and it was amazing. Great choice.

6 Allison @ Alli 'n Son May 7, 2012 at 9:08 pm

Panera has the BEST bread, don’t they?

7 cookingrookie May 7, 2012 at 8:11 pm

Such fun: pizza tomato bread :-) Must be really delicious with tromato and basil.. Something I got to try! Great pick!

8 Allison @ Alli 'n Son May 7, 2012 at 9:09 pm

The favor really explodes. I’m thinking about trying the combination in a pizza crust too.

9 April @ The 21st Century Housewife May 8, 2012 at 3:31 am

I love the sound of this delicious bread – it’s got all my favourite savoury flavours in it!

10 Kim Bee May 9, 2012 at 4:51 am

This is wonderful. There is nothing like fresh bread to perk up a household. I am always in a happy mood when I have some cooking up.

11 Susie Bee on Maui May 9, 2012 at 11:13 am

Oh we’d love this. I’d bet grilled cheese with some fun varieties of cheese WOULD be great!

12 Mom Photographer (@MomPhotographer) May 9, 2012 at 1:11 pm

wow! that sounds awesome!

13 Michele May 9, 2012 at 2:37 pm

Holy hannah! We’re having pizza tonight, I wonder how it would be as a pizza crust. Sounds amazing, can’t wait to try it.

14 Allison @ Alli 'n Son May 9, 2012 at 8:34 pm

I had that same thought. I was going to add tomato paste and basil to my favorite pizza crust recipe, I bet the flavor will be amazing!

15 Anita May 9, 2012 at 9:25 pm

I love baking bread and trying new recipes, this one sounds wonderful!

16 lisa May 10, 2012 at 7:58 am

This sounds amazing! I go though cycles when I’m obsessed with my bread maker and make everything I can think of. It’s been awhile, so maybe it’s time to bring it back out for some fun!

17 Raina May 10, 2012 at 12:44 pm

yum – sounds delish… this is definitely one that will be baking at my house soon!

18 Winnie May 11, 2012 at 6:11 am

Hey – this is great!
Pesto, tomatoes and cheese together in a bread loaf – this is something I must try!!
Love it

19 Miz Helen May 11, 2012 at 10:22 am

Hope you have a Very Special Week End and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
Come Back Soon!
Miz Helen

20 Maria May 14, 2012 at 9:32 pm

Mmmm this bread sounds so good, I love flavored breads, they make such a great addition to salads, soups or any dinners! Your bread looks amazing!

21 Rachael May 17, 2012 at 4:49 am

This sounds so great, and i would really like to try it…but i only have a handheld electric mixer, and no dough hook….is there any way i could make it without? Just by mixing the ingredients then kneading it myself maybe? Thanks so much for this amazing looking recipe!! :)

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