Pizza freak (noun): a true, unwavering lover of pizza, in its many forms and variations; one who recognizes the limitless nature of all things pizza and pizza-flavored things; an individual who simply cannot get enough pizza (and who likely loves the Eat The Pizza show)
We are some of the proudest pizza freaks on the planet. Join us in our love and celebration of pizza. But, first, it's crucial recognize the difference between a pizza FREAK and the pizza elitists. A pizza freak doesn't discriminate. A pizza freak is open and welcoming. A pizza freak says, yes, pineapple on pizza can be a thing. Drown your pie in anchovies if that's what floats your boat. We may like our pizzas in different ways, but our differences don't divide us. We embrace our traditions, entrenched in tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese, but we remain open to the pizzabilities.
We say yes to sushi pizza. We say deep-fry those pizza fillings into an egg roll. We say yes to salad on pizza and savory pizza donuts. We say yes to pizzas strange and unexplained, and even to the myriad of frozen pizzas decorating the freezer aisles in our grocery stores. Our pizzaventures now take us to a frozen pizza, that is as strange as it is tasty: the chicken-crust pizza from Real Good Pizza Co.
You may have seen the high protein, low carb pizza trending on the internet, or maybe you've tried it yourself. If you're curious, we did a Real Good Pizza taste test AND we made our own Chicken Crust Low Carb Pizza recipe, so you can make your own version at home! Check it out down below and, along the way, learn about the history of frozen food that has brought us to this point in pizza innovation (+ brush up on your knowledge of chickens).
The History of Frozen Food, in a Flash
You may think the origins of frozen food doesn’t concern you much, but, if you’ve enjoyed a frozen pizza, you’ve enjoyed a slice of that history. Freezing has been a method of food preservation for thousands of years—likely since 1000 B.C. when the Chinese were storing food in ice cellars. In colder climates, freezing food for storage came naturally. Freezing duck and geese in Russia meant it could better survive a long transport to England. But, it was the Inuit who had a particularly effective technique: they would fish from holes in the ice and, because it was so cold, the fish would freeze instantly!
A Canadian engineer, Clarence Birdseye, learned this technique from the Inuit and realized it was a stroke of genius. You may recognize his name from your freezer section—because Birds Eye Frosted Foods was the first brand frozen food ever sold commercially! When Birdseye would catch his own fish and freeze them immediately, he found that the fish weren’t mushy when thawed, unlike most other frozen foods at the time. This revelation got Birdseye’s gears spinning. He invested a whopping $7 in an electric fan, some buckets of brine, and lots of ice, and developed the world’s first flash-freezing method. He went on to patent a machine that could instantly freeze foods at a very low temperature for maximum freshness, which paved the way for the modern freezing technology used today. If it weren’t for Clarence’s flash of brilliance, we may have never known the simple joy of a frozen pizza!
But pizzas weren’t at the top of the flash-freezing priority list early on. Initially, flash-freezing was a miraculous way to preserve meat and fish to keep them fresh longer, and gave people easy access to different fruits and vegetables year-round. Eventually, food companies started experimenting with frozen meals, like the “Strato-Plates” that were sold to the Navy and airline companies by Maxson Food Systems, Inc. They were simple meals (a meat, vegetable, and potato…yum, airline food) served on metal trays, which inspired a new frozen food movement in the 1950s: TV dinner trays. A complete meal served in a tray, which you could just heat and then eat on your lap in front of the television, and it often cost less than a dollar?!? It was revolutionary—but this was only the beginning.
The Pioneers of Frozen Pizza
Believe it or not, frozen pizzas have been around longer than any pizza chain restaurant—even the earliest ones like Pizza Hut and Little Caesar’s! After WWII, when home freezers were fairly common, some pizzerias started selling unbaked, frozen pies. But, because Birdseye’s flash-freezing method was still in development, those unfortunate pioneer pizzas always seemed to end up soggy and lacking flavor. The problem with early freezing methods was that ice crystals would form on the food, which messed with the flavor and freshness. Many thanks to Clarence Birdseye for bringing us flash-freezing and non-soggy pizzas!
So, around the same time that frozen TV dinners were becoming popular, frozen pizzas were finally hitting their stride. There are a few conflicting claims to the first-frozen-pizza-maker fame. There was Rose and Jim Totino, who owned a takeout pizza place in Minneapolis and decided to try their hand at frozen pizzas in 1962. It worked out pretty well, considering Totino’s was the #1 selling brand by the end of the ‘60s. Then, also in 1962, there was Tombstone pizza, which came from Tombstone Tap—a tavern in Wisconsin across from a cemetery. But, even though these brands are still much-loved and eaten today, neither of them was actually the first.
The true pioneers of frozen pizza? Celentano Brothers. You might recognize the name from their line of frozen pastas that are still sold. Back in the 1940s, the Celentano brothers owned a specialty Italian store, selling items like pastas, cheeses, and meats. But, much like Clarence Birdseye, the brothers wanted to share the deliciousness of the foods they loved, without it going bad. So, in 1957, they introduced the first commercially-available frozen pizza. It was a square pizza made of break-away slices, and though it wasn’t the best seller, the Celentano brothers founded the frozen pizza tradition that’s still thriving today. Around 3 billion pizzas are sold in the U.S. each year, along with an additional 1 billion frozen pizzas!
What Is Real Good Pizza?
Personally, we think most pizzas and pizzafiable things are real good. But we’re talking about the Real Good Pizza Co., which is responsible for the latest innovation in the frozen pizza game: a chicken crust pizza. Yes, it’s a pizza, with a crust made of chicken and parmesan cheese. It’s a miraculous frozen pizza option for the carb-conscious pizza freaks out there, with only 8 grams of carbs in the entire pizza and 50 grams of protein! It's a low carb pizza, it's a keto pizza—whatever you call it, it's still a darn pizza, and we can dig it.
As the name implies—it’s real good. (SIDE NOTE: The Supreme is real good-er than the Three Cheese, IOO [in our opinion].) Plus, who can deny the glorious convenience of a frozen pizza?? If you’re like the 50% of Americans who are trying to lower their carb intake, or if you're on a keto diet, you can still have pizza. Just pop a Real Good Pizza in the oven or microwave, and bada-bing. They’ve got large pizzas, personal pizzas, even breakfast pizzas—OR, you can dress your pizza up however you like with our homemade Chicken Crust Pizza recipe! We've gotta say, we think it’s real, real good.
*Check out our Real Good Pizza taste test in the video!
Chicken Crust Pizza, or Dinosaur Crust?!
Now it’s time to learn about chickens. Because, before you turn them into a pizza crust, get to know them a bit.
- There are more chickens on Earth than any other bird species.
- There are more chickens than humans on Earth! Around 25 billion chickens to just 7.5 billion humans.
- Chickens can fly, just not too far. The world-record longest chicken flight lasted a whopping 13 seconds and the chicken traveled just over 300 feet.
- A chicken has more bones in its neck than a giraffe!
- The most eggs a hen has laid in one day is 7.
- Nine egg yolks have been found in one egg—the world record!
- Typically, the color of a chicken’s ear lobe indicates the color that their eggs will be!
- Have you ever seen a rooster dance? That’s called ‘tidbitting:’ bobbing their heads up and down while they’re picking up and dropping food. It’s a great way for the fellas to catch a hen’s eye.
- Chickens are able to recognize up to 100 different faces.
- Chickens can talk! There are about 30 distinct chicken sounds, and they each have a specific meaning. Some sounds are used for calling one another, some are alarms warning of predators, and others are used for signaling where food is!
- Chickens (and all modern birds) are dinosaurs technically! Birds are the only lineage of dinosaurs that survived extinction 65 million years ago.
- But, the humble chicken is special—it’s the closest living relative to the Tyrannosaurus rex! Researchers compared collagen proteins from inside the fossilized leg bone of a rex and found that the DNA was incredibly similar to that of chickens.
- If you have alektorophobia—the fear of chickens—you probably should have skipped this part.
- In Gainesville, Georgia, it’s illegal to eat fried chicken with anything but your fingers. The law states that fried chicken is “a culinary delicacy sacred to this municipality, this county, this state, the Southland, and this republic.”
- In Japan, people eat fried chicken and strawberry shortcake on Christmas Eve.
Don't Chicken Out, Eat The Chicken Crust Pizza
We sure do love frozen pizzas, and we’re so glad they exist. Thanks again, Clarence Birdseye, for makin’ it all happen. And Real Good Pizza is pretty darn good. But, we have to say, homemade Chicken Crust Pizza might be better… Give it a whirl and you decide!
Chicken Pizza Crust:
- 1 lb. ground chicken
- ⅓ cup mozzarella
- ½ tsp salt
- pinch pepper
- ⅓ cup parmesan
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp oregano
- pizza sauce
- mozzarella cheese
- bell peppers, diced
- red onions
- olives, sliced
- Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C).
- Combine all crust ingredients in a bowl and mix well.
- Place mixture on a pizza pan lined with parchment. Place plastic wrap on top and press mixture into shape of the pan.
- Bake 20 minutes until golden.
- Remove crust from oven. Add sauce, cheese, and desired toppings.
- Bake 10-15 more minutes, until cheese is gooey and delicious.
- Now it’s time to Eat The Pizza!
Yields one crazy low carb pizza.