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The best Pomodoro Pepperoni Pizza. Fresh pizza dough topped with homemade tomato sauce, 3 cheeses, and plenty of basil + pepperoni. This is going to be everyone’s favorite pizza. The sauce is a simple tomato-basil made with hot sauce and Calabrian peppers in oil – subtle, delicious spiciness.

Pomodoro Pepperoni Pizza |

This pizza has just the right amounts of spice, saltiness, and cheese, and we doubled up on the pepperoni! Delicious – there never seem to be enough slices to go around!

It’s been so long since we chatted about pizza, I’m so excited for this recipe! It’s very classic, but the sauce is made with something that makes it special and delicious. This pizza is great for busy nights but would be especially awesome for the upcoming Super Bowl. My inspiration behind the recipe.

The last time I made pizza was a few weeks ago. Red and I were filming an upcoming project that we have coming out together. Part of the day was spent making pizza. Since Red is a newbie in the kitchen, we kept the pizzas very simple. He built his own with red sauce, chiles, cheese, and pepperoni.

Pomodoro Pepperoni Pizza |

It was his pizza that we all loved most. And it reminded me that when it comes to pizza, most of the time, a classic slice of pepperoni cheese pizza is best. It’s really hard to beat.

Fast forward to today – is it just me, or does the Super Bowl seem to be a bigger deal than most years now that Taylor Swift is dating Travis Kelsey? Somehow, she’s managed to up the game’s popularity even more!

I’ve been brainstorming recipes for the Super Bowl. After seeing a lot of requests for a game day pizza instead of wings, I knew I wanted to make Red’s spicy pizza. This is exactly the pizza he made, and I think it’s one of my favorite pizzas. It would be the perfect Super Bowl pizza!

Pomodoro Pepperoni Pizza |

These are the details

Step 1: the dough

I do make my own dough, but feel free to pick up your favorite store-bought dough. I love the options from Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods. They even have great gluten-free options too!

If you want to make your own dough, I use the pizza dough recipe from the HBH Every Day cookbook. Just make sure your dough is at room temperature. This will make shaping your pizzas much easier.

Pomodoro Pepperoni Pizza |

Step 2: the spicy tomato sauce

This is the secret sauce to the recipe. It looks like your basic marinara sauce, but it’s made spicy with the addition of buffalo sauce (hot sauce mixed with butter and seasoned salt) and a spoonful of Calabrian chili peppers in oil. I order my Calabrian peppers on Amazon. If you don’t have the jarred chili peppers, just add a pinch of chili flakes to the sauce.

Balance the heat and acid from the tomatoes with the tiniest amount of honey. Then season with salt and pepper.

I also love to use a can of fire-roasted diced or crushed San Marzano tomatoes. This is another ingredient I grab at either Whole Foods or my local Kroger grocery store. Use whatever can of tomatoes you have readily available.

Pomodoro Pepperoni Pizza |

Step 3: the cheese

Now that the sauce is together, roll the dough out. Then spread on a few spoonfuls of sauce – you will have extra. Save this for another pizza or a bowl of pasta!

Sprinkle with sesame seeds, and then add the cheese. I use a mix of mozzarella, provolone, and fontina. A wonderful Italian mix of melty cheeses.

Pomodoro Pepperoni Pizza |

Step 4: finish with basil + pepperoni

Arrange a handful of fresh basil leaves over the cheese, and then add the pepperoni. You can use as much pepperoni as you like. Personally, I love to cover the surface of the pizza with pepperoni. Never too much in my mind.

As soon as the pizza comes out of the oven. Slice it, top with grated parmesan or more basil, and eat. The perfect pizza pie to serve for dinner or as something yummy to entertain guests with on game day.

Pomodoro Pepperoni Pizza |

Looking for other pizza recipes? Here are some favorites

Calabrian Chili Roasted Red Pepper Pizza

Pull Apart Roasted Garlic Pizza Dip Sliders

Pesto Pizza with Feta Stuffed Crust

Sheet Pan Buffalo Chicken Pizza

Easy Sheet Pan Tomato Herb Pizza

Pesto Potato Burrata Pizza with Spicy Arugula

Lastly, if you make this Pomodoro Pepperoni Pizza, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And, of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!

Pomodoro Pepperoni Pizza

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories Per Serving: 423 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.



  • 1. Preheat the oven to 450° F.
    2. In a saucepan, combine the tomatoes, hot sauce, butter, seasoned salt, honey, and Calabrian chili paste (use this to your taste). Set over medium heat and cook for 10 minutes until thickened. Season with salt and pepper
    3. On a lightly floured surface, push the dough out until it's thin (about a 10-12 inch circle/square). Transfer the dough to a parchment-lined baking sheet.
    3. Spread the tomato sauce over the dough. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. Add the mozzarella, provolone, and fontina. Arrange the basil and pepperoni over the cheese.
    4. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until the crust is golden and the cheese is bubbling. Remove from the oven. Slice and enjoy! Sprinkle parmesan on top!
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  1. 5 stars
    Outstanding recipe!! I couldn’t find shredded provolone but it was delicious without it. I don’t care for pepperoni and it wasn’t missed. The sauce is amazing! Can’t wait to make this again!

    1. Hey Sheri,
      Happy Sunday! I’m so glad to hear that this recipe was a winner, thanks for trying it out! xT

  2. 5 stars
    This Pomodoro Pepperoni Pizza recipe is a mouthwatering delight! The combination of fresh ingredients and gooey cheese creates a burst of flavor with every bite. Perfectly balanced with the tanginess of tomatoes and the richness of pepperoni, it’s a surefire crowd-pleaser. Can’t wait to try this at home!

  3. Hi! This recipe looks amazing and I’m planning to make it this week 🙂 I’m a baby about spice though, so I wanted to ask you about that: if I need to take the spice out of the sauce, would you still rec fire roasted tomatoes, but omit the hot sauce and chili paste? Should I just sub in regular tomato paste then? TIA!

  4. I am aaaallll about those pepperoni cups!!! I have yet to find a natural casing pepperoni stick/log that I can hand slice thicker to produce those cups. Did you reeeally use the Applegate “turkey” pepperoni for your Pomodoro pizza?!? I’ve never purchased turkey pepperoni, ever. Don’t make me run to Target on Super Bowl Sunday, Tieghan….because I will Ü
    I’m Keto so I’ll be making this on lavash bread but your’s looks uh-mazing! My unopened jar of calabrian chiles are dying to be used.
    P.S. Our Costco has a new twin pack Rao’s that is a Calabrian Chile Marinara. I know you’ve used Rao’s in the past, so I though I’d let you know. I’m making Red’s Spicy Sauce today so I haven’t opened the Rao’s yet. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Hey Tracy,
      I usually like to buy a pepperoni stick from the deli and slice that myself! I hope you love this pizza:) Let me know how it turns out! xT

  5. Hi Tieghan,
    This is so random, but the pepperoni looks incredible! Is that really the applegate pep? Or did you get it from a Deli Counter?!

    1. Hi Elliott,
      I typically just buy the sticks of pepperoni from Whole Foods and slice them myself:) Please let me know if you have any other questions! xT

  6. 5 stars
    Delicious! Loved the zip to the sauce! I used a 14 oz can of tomatoes and halved the other sauce ingredients so I didn’t have as much left over

    1. Hey Mia,
      Happy Monday!! Thanks a lot for trying this recipe out and your feedback! Love to hear it turned out well! xT

  7. I think I saw on your IG story that you drizzled olive oil on it just before baking…is that right? It isn’t in your recipe and so now I am just wondering. I will likely do it because I mean olive oil right! 🙂

    1. Hi Marla,
      You could totally do a drizzle of olive oil! I hope you love this pizza, please let me know if you give it a try! xT

  8. 5 stars
    Red for the win!!
    Perfect in every way + super easy. I forgot the sesame seeds, but will try those next time.
    Thank you Tieghan for giving me consistent winner dinners ❤️

    1. Hey Susan,
      Fantastic!! Thanks a lot for trying this recipe and your feedback, so glad to hear it was a hit! xT

  9. You mention that this is the “exact” pizza that Red made, but also that he used Rao’s. Now I’m curious, did he combine the Rao sauce with the recipe you show here, or what exactly did he make?

    1. Hi Alex,
      Red made the pizza just like this:) If you wanted to use Rao’s they make great pizza sauce you could also just add a splash of Rao’s to this as well, that would work well too! xT

        1. Hi Carla,
          Alex was asking me how Red made his pizza and he added some Rao’s to his. Just sharing what he did:) You don’t have to do that at all and can follow this recipe exactly as written. Happy Sunday! xx

      1. Previously, you responded to Liz that Red used Rao’s for his pizza sauce. That sparked my question and curiosity. Now that reply has been deleted. Interesting.

  10. I will be trying it out sometime soon, but find it hard to believe it will be better than you vodka pizza sauce!!!

  11. If “this pizza is going to be everyone’s favorite” as you say, I’ll def have tot give it a try!

    Would you say this is more of a crowd pleaser than the other 90+ pizza recipes on the blog? Which one is your personal favorite?

    1. Hi Michelle,
      I would say this is more of a classic that most everyone should love:) Let me know if you give this recipe a try! xT

  12. 4 stars
    This recipe is delicious and you don’t need to use the sesame seeds or too much pepperoni; less is better for my heartburns. Otherwise, it is really good.

  13. In looking at this recipe, it calls for 1/2 cup hot sauce, plus Calabrian chili paste. I’m just wondering if the 1/2 cup hot sauce is a misprint? Talk about SPICY & HOT – wow! The recipe sounds good and I plan to try it but will definitely cut back on the HEAT! 🙂

    1. Hey Janie,
      Thanks for your question! All of the measurements are correct:) If you are worried about the heat, you could skip or reduce the Calabrian chili paste and then you could also use just a mild buffalo sauce. I hope this helps! Please let me know if you have any other questions! xx