Introduction: Buffalo Chicken Pizza
I live in Western New York, where chicken wings and fingers are probably our most popular "local" food. Plenty of pizza places around here sell chicken finger pizza and it is super tasty. I figured that people in other areas of the country/world may have never even heard of chicken finger pizza, so I thought it would be a good addition to the many pizzas on Instructables.
If you like chicken wings, spicy food, and/or pizza, then you'll like this pizza. You can adjust the heat of the chicken to your liking even if you aren't a huge fan of spicy.
I used a pizza stone so my instructions will be for a pizza stone, but I will include extra instructions for using a pizza pan or cookie sheet. I also let the pizza rise after putting it together. This is optional and will make for a fluffier pizza.
Step 1: Gather the Ingredients
To start, let's gather the things that we'll need.
- Pizza pan and/or stone. If you use a stone, you will need something (like a pizza peel or cookie sheet) to prepare the pizza on while the stone preheats.
- Pizza cutter. Well unless you're just going to eat the whole thing ;)
- Cutting board and knife - for cutting the chicken
- Spoon - for spreading the bleu cheese
- Various bowls for mixing up hot sauce
- Plate to heat up the chicken fingers on
- Pizza dough. The Tops (grocery store) near us makes pizzas to order and you can buy just the dough. I'm sure you can probably find Instructables about making dough from scratch, but I'm not very good with yeast. You might be able to find frozen dough (but you would want it raw!) or as an alternative, a loaf of frozen bread dough could work (although it wouldn't be as good).
- Corn Meal. You could possibly use flour in place of this, but corn meal is best for keeping the dough from sticking to the pan. If you don't have any and you aren't using a pizza stone, pan spray could suffice.
- Hot sauce. I used Original Anchor Bar Wing Sauce because that's what we had in the house. Anchor Bar is where chicken wings originated, so it's pretty good. They have many levels of hotness and I will explain how to adjust hotness to your liking. You will need about 1/4 - 1/2 cup.
- Some kind of breaded chicken. We happened to have chicken fingers in the freezer, so I used those. You could also use chicken finger leftovers or even make your own from scratch. But note, the chicken needs to be fully cooked before it goes on the pizza! I used 3 small chicken fingers and I had a little bit leftover.
- Bleu Cheese Dressing. Any kind will work, I just used a store brand. You only need about 2-3 tbsp.
- Mozzarella Cheese. Any type of shredded will work. You'll need about a cup or maybe some more depending on if you like lots of cheese.
- Butter (optional). Can be used to tone down the hot sauce. You can also use cayenne pepper to heat it up,
Step 2: Preheat the Oven
If you are using a pizza stone, put it in now (whether or not you're letting the dough rise). It must be put in the oven before the oven is heated.
If you aren't going to wait and let the pizza rise after preparation, now is the time to preheat the oven to 450. I'm not preheating it yet.
Step 3: Prepare the Dough
1. Cover the pan with cornmeal. If you don't have cornmeal, use cooking spray. I am using the bottom of the pizza pan so that I can move it to the pizza stone more easily. If you're using just a pizza pan or a cookie sheet, put the dough inside the pan.
2. Grab the dough and stretch it in the air. Use gravity to help you stretch the dough. Try to get the dough close to the size that you need. You will probably start to get some thinner parts - try not to stretch anywhere you can see light through already because you might get a hole.
3. Plop it down onto your pan.
4. Stretch it out to the pizza shape you need. If you're using a pizza pan, go to the edges. If you just have a cookie sheet, make a pizza sized circle.
5. Put this to the side while we prepare the chicken.
Step 4: Prepare the Chicken
1. Put your chicken on a plate and microwave according to directions on the package
2. Cut up the chicken into bite-sized pieces. Somewhere around 1/4"-1/2" pieces
3. If your hot sauce is too hot, melt some butter in a bowl in the microwave. I did about 1.5 tbsp
4. Put the hot sauce in a bowl (if you're adding butter or cayenne).
5. Mix in butter to calm the hot sauce down or add cayenne to heat it up. Keep in mind that there is bleu cheese on the pizza and with the bread, you get a nice combination of hotness with cooling elements, so you can probably handle it a bit hotter than you'd think.
6. Pour the hot sauce mixture on the chicken pieces.
7. Mix up the chicken with your hand.
Put the mixture aside until we're ready.
Step 5: Put the Pizza Together
1. Make a claw with your hand and poke around the dough with your nails. If you have a pizza dock, you can use it, but I don't think many people even know what that is. You're basically trying to prevent giant bubbles from forming when you cook (you'll still get some)
2. Add the bleu cheese. You'll need about 2-3 tbsp.
3. Spread out the bleu cheese with the back of a spoon. You'll want it as thin as you can get it, you don't need very much.
4. Spread it to the edges, leave some crust. You can determine how much crust you want. I do about 1" because I like crust.
5. Sprinkle about 1 cup of mozzarella on top of the bleu cheese. You'll want it to be spread evenly. You should still see some bleu cheese through the spaces in the mozzarella. Make sure to go all of the way to the edges/crust.
6. Add the chicken pieces that we prepped earlier. You'll want them evenly spaced, try not to have any touching.
Step 6: Let It Rise (optional)
If you like your pizza fluffier, you'll want to let the pizza sit for about a half hour. This will let the dough rise a little bit more before you cook it. If you're opting to do this, preheat the oven to 450 degrees so that you can put it in in 30 minutes (I usually preheat for 10 minutes, so 20 minutes from now...)
If you aren't letting the pizza rise, your oven should already be preheated and you can go to the next step.
Step 7: Bake Your Pizza
If you're using a pizza pan or cookie sheet:
Just put the pizza directly in the oven on your pan. It tends to cook best on the lowest rack.
If you're using a pizza stone:
First, make sure that your pizza isn't stuck to your pan - lift up around the edges and add cornmeal as necessary. Then your pizza should (hopefully) slide right off onto the pizza stone. I still haven't mastered this and I'm sure it would be better if I had a pizza peel, but I don't :( I wound up lifting the whole pizza up and onto the stone and then rearranging the chicken back to where it belonged.
Bake for about 20 minutes. I like to turn the whole thing around about 1/2 way through because my oven is very uneven (check out the picture) and cooks faster in the back. You want the crust to be golden brown. As with most breads, if you tap on the crust, it should sound hollow when it's done.
Step 8: Cut, Serve, and Eat!
Once your pizza is a nice golden brown, remove it from the oven.
Cut it into slices with a pizza cutter (I like to do 8 because it's easy to make them even)
Eat the pizza. Be prepared to go back for seconds ;)