This quick and easy recipe for English Muffin Pizzas is the ultimate nostalgic 90’s comfort food! This easy meal idea is perfect for lunch, dinner, or even a filling snack. Picky eater approved, and ready in less than 20 minutes.
When I was growing up in the 90’s, there were a lot of quick and easy dinners that we were big fans of as kids (Cornflake chicken anyone?). Perhaps none as popular (or delicious) as English muffin pizza.
This quick and easy recipe was a favorite with parents too – all you needed to do was add some pizza sauce and cheese to English muffin halves, and you were good to go! Best of all? No complaints from the picky eaters.
I still make this recipe for my family when we’re craving pizza, but don’t want to drive to get takeout or commit to the work and time it takes to make homemade. It also makes the perfect quick lunch for a busy day, and they can be made ahead and frozen for meals later on.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe:
- This English muffin pizza recipe is an easy meal idea that’s perfect for picky eaters.
- It’s an easy recipe made with basic ingredients and is always a huge hit.
- You can switch it up and get creative with your favorite pizza toppings, mini pepperonis, bell pepper, red onion, etc.
- This easy lunch or dinner also works well as an easy snack – you can quickly make just one or two English muffin halves. Try making them using the air fryer or toaster oven variations!
- English muffins: You’ll split them into English muffin halves for this recipe – making mini pizzas on each half. Feel free to use any style of English muffin you like best: white, whole wheat, or sprouted.
- Pizza sauce: Canned or jarred pizza sauce works great for this recipe, but if you have some homemade pizza sauce on hand, even better! You could even make up a quick batch using some tomato sauce and a few dried herbs.
- Mozzarella cheese: I recommend shredded mozzarella cheese yourself, but pre-shredded cheese will work totally fine. You could also use a blend of mozzarella and cheddar cheese if you prefer.
- Pepperoni (optional): I used regular sliced pepperoni, but you could use mini pepperonis if you prefer! Or even chopped cured meats like salami, prosciutto, etc.
- Toppings: Although the surface area of these mini pizzas is pretty small, you can still include your favorite toppings! Just keep them diced small, and be sure not to put too many on a single mini pizza. I like to keep it simple and sprink on fresh basil as soon as they came out of the oven. Yum!
- Baking sheet: You can use whatever style baking sheet (AKA sheet pan) you have on hand. I like to use a quarter sheet pan, as it’s the perfect amount of space for making 6 individual English muffin pizzas. Use a half sheet pan if you plan on doubling the recipe.
How to Make English Muffin Pizzas in the Oven
If you’re looking for air fryer or toaster oven instructions, I’ve provided those towards the end of the post. The most common way to make English muffin pizzas is in the oven, so we’ll get started with that method!
Toasting the English Muffins
This first step is optional, but highly recommended! When I was growing up in the 90’s, the most common way to make this popular comfort food was to just add the sauce, cheese, and toppings and bake them right away. While this was a super easy way to prep them, it did sometimes create some sogginess from the sauce seeping into the English muffin.
The best way to prevent this is to first toast the English muffins in the oven for about 5 minutes. This crisps up the bread portion, making it so the sauce rests nicely on top, rather than sinking into it.
All you have to do is preheat the oven, place the split English muffin halves on a baking sheet, and bake for 5 minutes at the preheated temperature (425ºF or 218ºC). Then take them out of the oven, and you’re ready to assemble them with sauce, cheese, and your favorite toppings.
Assembling the English Muffin Pizzas
Spread each English muffin half with a heaping tablespoon of pizza sauce, and then top with 1/4 cup or so of shredded mozzarella cheese.
Then place 2 regular-sized pepperoni slices (or 5-6 mini pepperonis) on each one, and add your favorite pizza toppings.
I like to make about half of them with pepperoni, and leave the others to make cheese or veggie-packed mini pizzas.
Baking English Muffin Pizza
Once you have topped the pizzas with pepperoni, bell pepper, mushrooms, red onion, green peppers, etc. you can pop them right into the oven to bake.
Bake for about 8-10 minutes (10-15 minutes if you didn’t toast the english muffins beforehand), or until the cheese is bubbly and melted. If you want the cheese to be extra bubbly, try putting the broiler on for about 1 minute (but make sure your pans are broiler safe).
Cooling and Serving
Once the mini pizzas are hot and bubbly, remove them from the oven. If you want to add a splash of color and flavor, I recommend adding some chopped fresh basil to each of the pizzas. It’s my favorite way to enjoy them!
Allow the English muffin pizzas to cool for about 5 minutes before removing them from the baking sheet and serving them.
They pair perfectly with fresh veggies and ranch dip, or a crisp and healthy salad like my recipe for Swedish Pizza Salad.
Storing and Reheating
Storing: Wait for the English muffin pizzas to cool completely before adding them to an airtight container. Store in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Reheating: Reheat these in the microwave for 1-2 minutes, or until heated through. You can also reheat them in a toaster oven for 2-4 minutes, or an air fryer set to 350ºF for about 2-4 minutes.
Make Ahead and Freeze
Freezing: Toast your English muffins in the oven for about 5 minutes beforehand, then allow them to cool completely. Add the sauce, cheese, and pepperoni and place them on a sheet pan. Place the sheet pan in the freezer and allow them to freeze until completely solid. Transfer to an airtight freezer bag and keep them in the freezer for up to 2 months.
Cooking from frozen: Preheat the oven to 400ºF and place the frozen English muffin pizzas on a baking sheet. Cook for 12-15 minutes, or until heated through with bubbly cheese.
Toaster Oven Instructions
Making this easy lunch idea is made even simpler when you use a toaster oven!
- Preheat the toaster oven to 400 degrees F (medium-high heat) for about 3-4 minutes.
- Add the English muffin halves to a small toaster oven baking sheet and toast for 4-5 minutes.
- Top with cheese, sauce, and toppings of choice.
- Cook for 8-14 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbly and the pizzas are warmed through.
- Allow them to cool for 5 minutes before serving.
Air Fryer Instructions
I’ve detailed a super easy way to make air fryer English muffin pizzas in a previous recipe, but I’ll give you the general idea here.
- Preheat the air fryer basket to 350ºF for at least 3 minutes (or according to your manufacturer’s instructions).
- Place 3 English muffin halves on a cutting board or plate.
- Top each half with 1 heaping tablespoon of pizza sauce and about 1/4 cup of shredded cheese.
- Place them into the air fryer basket and cook for 4-6 minutes.
- Remove them from the air fryer and add any desired toppings – note that these may fly around a bit depending on your air fryer model.
- Cook for an additional 1-3 minutes, or until the pepperoni is crispy on the edges.
- Remove from the air fryer and allow to cool for 5 minutes before serving.
Whole wheat: Use whole wheat or sprouted English muffins instead of the regular white ones. This is a great way to incorporate healthy eating, all while enjoying one of the most beloved and delicious meals of the 1990’s.
Toppings: Feel free to use your favorite toppings to add flavor, color, and crunch to these mini pizzas. Just make sure to chop the pieces small. Crumbled bacon, mushrooms, bell pepper, red onion, pineapple, chopped ham, feta cheese, and cheddar cheese are all great options.
With Spaghetti Sauce: If you don’t have pizza sauce on hand, you can use spaghetti sauce or marinara sauce.
If you want to freeze English muffin pizzas, start off by toasting the split English muffins in the oven for about 5 minutes. Then allow them to cool completely before topping them with sauce, cheese, pepperoni, and other toppings. Place them on a sheet pan and place in the freezer. Once the pizzas are completely solid, transfer them to an airtight freezer bag, label, and store. Freeze for up to 2 months.
Wrap the mini pizzas in a layer of parchment paper to prevent the toppings and cheese from sticking to other items in the lunch box. They can be reheated in parchment paper, or eaten cold for a quick and easy lunch.
The best way to keep English muffin pizzas from getting soggy is to toast them before adding the sauce and other toppings. This prevents the sauce from seeping through to the English muffin, which is what creates sogginess.
More Easy Meal Ideas
- Sheet Pan Smoked Sausage and Peppers
- Air Fryer Chicken Fajitas
- One Pan Creamy Garlic Chicken
- Slow Cooker Queso Chicken Tacos
- Creamy Mushroom Chicken
English Muffin Pizzas
- 3 English muffins split
- 1/2 cup pizza sauce
- 1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
- 12 slices pepperoni optional
- Chopped fresh basil optional
- Preheat the oven to 425ºF.
- Place the halved English muffins on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper.
- Add the English muffins to the preheated oven and toast them for 5 minutes.
- Remove the pan from the oven and spread each of the English muffin halves with a heaping tablespoon of pizza sauce.
- Sprinkle ¼ cup of shredded mozzarella cheese on each of the halves, then top with 2 slices of pepperoni each.
- Place in the oven and bake for 8-10 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
- Remove from the oven and garnish with freshly chopped basil, if desired.
- Serve and enjoy!
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