Marks Daily Apple
Serving up health and fitness insights (daily, of course) with a side of irreverence.
4 Jun

Greek Meatza with Creamy Feta, Kalamata Olives and Red Onion

meatza3There is much about meatza that makes our mouth water: the juicy, high-protein meat “crust,” the toppings that satisfy our cravings for pizza and the fact that we can eat it with our hands like traditional pizza. But even the most carnivorous among us have to admit that some meatza recipes, the ones smothered in sauce and tons of gooey cheese, can be a bit of a gut bomb. We’re not saying it doesn’t taste good, we’re just saying that after a few bites we’re on the verge of a meatza-induced food coma.

We figured there had to be a way to make meatza that wasn’t so heavy, a meatza that looked less like something we’d eat alone in front of the TV and more like something we could serve at a dinner party. We wanted to change our meatza up a bit, but didn’t want to make the recipe more complicated or less flavorful. We’re happy to report we have succeeded on all fronts.

This Greek-inspired meatza has a crust made from juicy ground beef seasoned with fresh thyme and garlic, a thin layer of sauce and a simple but incredibly flavorful trio of red onions, kalamata olives and feta cheese to top it off.

The sharp, briny feta brings tons of flavor and a creamy texture without becoming greasy or adding too much dairy. Because the flavor of quality feta is so bold, we find that a mere 1/3 cup is enough, but you can use as much as you like if you tolerate dairy well. Along with the feta, the bold combination of red onion and kalamata olives makes every bite exciting and satisfying without straying too far from traditional pizza flavors. The meat “crust” is thick enough to hold together without being too thick and heavy.

This is not your momma’s meatza; it’s a little more refined, a little less over the top, but we guarantee you’ll think it’s just as good.

Makes 6-8 square pieces

Ingredients:

ingredients 7

  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 2 eggs
  • 1-2 tablespoons fresh thyme
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped (optional)

Toppings:

  • 1/4 cup (or more to taste) of your favorite pizza/tomato sauce
  • 1 cup pitted kalamata olives
  • 1 small red onion, very thinly sliced
  • 1/3 cup or more crumbled feta

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.

Line a rimmed 11×17 pan with parchment paper. The rim is important so the grease is contained while the meat cooks.

In a large bowl combine the meat, eggs, thyme, oregano, onion powder, salt and garlic. Whisk the egg with a fork then get your hands in there and thoroughly combine the eggs with the meat.

meat and eggs

Spread the meat out evenly and thinly over the entire pan, stretching it all the way to the sides.

raw meat

Bake for 10-12 minutes and remove from the oven.

Turn on the oven broiler to high.

The meat will have shrunk by several inches. We like to gently scrape off the top to remove excess grease and then transfer the meat to a new pan. (You can also just drain any liquid or grease that has gathered in the pan and finish baking the meatza in the same pan.)

crust

Spread pizza sauce on top, leaving a little rim around the edges for a “crust.” Cover the meatza with toppings. Broil for 5-7 minutes, until cheese is soft and toppings are lightly browned.

meatza2

meatza1

You want comments? We got comments:

Imagine you’re George Clooney. Take a moment to admire your grooming and wit. Okay, now imagine someone walks up to you and asks, “What’s your name?” You say, “I’m George Clooney.” Or maybe you say, “I’m the Clooninator!” You don’t say “I’m George of George Clooney Sells Movies Blog” and you certainly don’t say, “I’m Clooney Weight Loss Plan”. So while spam is technically meat, it ain’t anywhere near Primal. Please nickname yourself something your friends would call you.

  1. Oh yum, yum, yum! I’m so running to Ingles this morning and getting an onion and some olives because this is SO going to be my lunch!

    Aly wrote on June 4th, 2011
  2. That looks great, meatza is one of my favorite paleo dishes. Will definitely try this variation soon.

    Kris wrote on June 4th, 2011
  3. it’s what’s for dinner, tonight. THX!

    Dasbutch wrote on June 4th, 2011
  4. This is soooooo gonna be my dinner tonight. Finally some good use to those pounds of minced grass fed meat!

    Albert wrote on June 4th, 2011
    • Hi Albert,
      I struggled for years with all the ground beef that came with our half cow, until last fall I finally came up with the paleo solution – big ass salad with TACO meat. It’s awesome. Salad has lettuce tomato cuke red onion carrots avocado red pepper, meat is ground beef yellow onion and homemade taco seasoning and dressing is evoo red wine vinegar a little balsamic vinegar s&p mustard a drop or two of pomegranate molasses. I never get tired of this salad, and between just 2 of us, we polished off 80# of ground in 6 months.

      Kate wrote on June 5th, 2011
  5. True meat lovers pizza!

    Jaybird wrote on June 4th, 2011
  6. i think i might try that with some ground lamb that i already have. looks good!

    cat wrote on June 4th, 2011
  7. Yum!! Meatza is awesome. I can’t wait to try this variation!

    Shamra wrote on June 4th, 2011
  8. I think Primal pizza would be better made with an almond flour or cauliflower or sweet potato crust.

    Meagan wrote on June 4th, 2011
    • no way! meatza is one of kind not requiring any carb base/crust

      Isis wrote on June 6th, 2011
  9. Looks great! I made a Primal pizza last night with almond flour crust (almond flour, salt, baking soda, olive oil, egg, spices – Gluten-free Almond Flour Cookbook recipe), topped with a little sauce, some leftover meatloaf (Everyday Paleo recipe – yum), onion, roasted red pepper, and a little cheese. It was delish and more importantly my two-year-old thought so too!

    Dawn wrote on June 4th, 2011
  10. If you love onion like I do, instead of onion powder, coarsely chopped sweet onion adds more body to the “meatza”, and I love the extra crunch in the “crust”.

    Bull wrote on June 4th, 2011
  11. I’ve never tried a meatza before and ive been primal for 14 months… thats going to change this week!

    Primal Toad wrote on June 4th, 2011
  12. Cheese??? I guess my fundamentals came from a different source. I was under the impression that dairy was not paleo. Is it just cows milk to be avoided, or some modern part of milk processing we’re avoiding? Is organic milk OK? Or just goats milk? Fill me in people I’m still a relative newby.

    Mike wrote on June 4th, 2011
    • Hey man – a little dairy here and there is okay for some people. Especially the raw, fermented options (fermented means cheese, yogurt, kefir, etc). Its something Mark Sisson calls a “sensible indulgence”. Some people are much more strict (sometimes out of necessity), but most people who eat primal/paleo throw in a little cheese or yogurt here and there and are none the worse for it. Somewhere on this site there is a “Definitive Guide to Dairy” that explains this in more detail.

      Graham wrote on June 4th, 2011
    • Eating paleo/primal is like religion – everybody has their own version. There are no paleo police. You can choose whatever works for you & your body. Enjoy!
      (I would like my meatza with lamb also!)

      Peggy wrote on June 4th, 2011
  13. Eating paleo has made me feel so much sharper and more vibrant throughout my day. And the additional protein intake has helped me put on at least ten pounds of muscle, without a single change to my workout routine!

    The only meatza I have ever had was at a friends house a few years ago. His “meatza” was really just a pizza loaded with ham, sausage, and pepperoni on it though. This is definitely a much healthier option. I look forward to trying it.

    Jeremy | Art of Lifting wrote on June 4th, 2011
  14. Looks amazing! Small meatza squares would make for awesome hors d’oeuvre.

    Maba wrote on June 4th, 2011
    • Hey, good idea!

      Allie wrote on June 4th, 2011
    • If you’re going to do it as hors d’oeuvres, before cooking the meat, use a pizza cutter to cut it into the size you will need.
      You can make square meatballs like this too,(quicker than rolling balls) after scoring them to the size you want.
      You’ll have to go thru them again after cooking, with the pizza cutter, but it’s just cooked meat juices you’re cutting.

      Nan Zitney wrote on June 5th, 2011
  15. Wow! Looks fabulous!! Gonna make it next week… Now, where on earth do I get “parchment paper”??

    wilberfan wrote on June 4th, 2011
    • most large-chain grocers carry it now. It’s with the foil, freezer paper, cling wrap, etc.

      peggy wrote on June 4th, 2011
    • I think it’s just called ‘baking paper’ here in Australia, yeah?

      Erin wrote on August 8th, 2011
  16. You get parchment paper in the regular grocery store. It’s usually near the aluminum foil and plastic wrap, although you may find some on the baking aisle. It REALLY helps with keeping foods from sticking to baking pans.

    Virginia wrote on June 4th, 2011
  17. This sounds amazing! I bet it would be fantastic with artichoke hearts added as well!

    OperaDivaMom wrote on June 4th, 2011
  18. I have yet to get to making a meatza. I think I will do one with bacon first, but this recipe is going on the calendar for this month – sooner than later!

    Shaun wrote on June 4th, 2011
  19. Never tried this before. It looks delicious! This is definitely on my “foods to try” list :)

    Mark wrote on June 4th, 2011
  20. Wow that looks amazing. Mark I think you are the only person in the world that doesn’t take a day off, I think it’s the energy you got from the Primal Living.
    For the past week or so I tried your approach to diet, ( not that I need to diet ). And I have to say I feel more energetic, vs before where I did consumed a lot of carbohydrates ( so I can have more intense workouts ). My energy levels went up with your approach, and I am going to stick with it longer to see how I do. Thank you for all this amazing info you are posting.

    Tatianna wrote on June 4th, 2011
  21. Omg. I wanna try this, it loos so good.

    Allie wrote on June 4th, 2011
  22. There are more benefits the longer you stay off grains/other starches and eat good protein (grass fed meat, wild fish, pastured eggs, etc.). It only gets better with time. For all the people I know who have switched to low carb and have gotten off of grains (including myself), it took about a month before they stopped getting grain/starch cravings altogether. I don’t even see starchy things as food any more. It’s just effortless.

    The Scientist wrote on June 4th, 2011
    • I agree! I actually just got back from a baby shower where there was nothing but carbs! They had sad looking sandwiches (more bread than meat), a HUGE plate of bread with some sort of dip in a bread bowl, thin wafers and cake. Nothing looked appetizing! Good thing I had my primal breakfast of eggs, bacon, spinach and berries, I was COMPLETELY ok skipping out on lunch.

      2bcris wrote on June 4th, 2011
  23. So delicious! I added thinly sliced tomato, and sprinkled with fresh ground pepper and dried basil.

    Thanks for this, it’s one of my new favs.

    Brent wrote on June 4th, 2011
  24. BTW, it goes exceptionally well with this easy to make sauce:

    http://www.elanaspantry.com/bbq-sauce/

    Brent wrote on June 4th, 2011
  25. I can’t stand mince meat. Would rather have a bready-type base.

    Sue wrote on June 4th, 2011
  26. Just made this for my husband, son, and myself tonight — used lean, hormone free ground beef, a little tomato sauce, red onion, gorgonzola cheese, kalamata olives, and crumbled bacon…Oh – My – Goodness — YUM!!!

    Michele Chastain wrote on June 4th, 2011
  27. Made it for dinner tonight. Only change was we added fresh tomatoes from the garden.

    We just bought a fore quarter of beef so we have plenty of hamburger meat. Feels good having a small freezer 2/3 full of good meat.

    Jeff wrote on June 4th, 2011
  28. Oh lord, this looks amazing. Definitely adding to the list of recipes I want to cook next.

    andrew wrote on June 4th, 2011
  29. Our local organic farm shop sells packs of fresh buffalo mince and venison mince. They make for interesting gamier versions.
    And anchovies! With tomatoes, olives and anchovies – my perfect meatza!

    Corinne Spiers wrote on June 5th, 2011
  30. Praise be to Grok..that is AMAZING! This calls for a special trip to the store…gotta go…

    Keet wrote on June 5th, 2011
  31. This looks delicious. I’ve never even heard of these things. Thanks for posting!

    Peggy The Primal Parent wrote on June 5th, 2011
  32. Any ideas about how to hold the “crust” together without eggs? They are very unkind to my gut, and I can’t think of anything else that works as well as a binder.

    Nannsi wrote on June 5th, 2011
    • Maybe cheese will work…

      Ashana wrote on June 5th, 2011
    • Organic Ground Flax Meal!

      Tamara wrote on June 7th, 2011
  33. Awesome! Getting ready to cook. I didn’t have ground beef so I’m using goat… Lol hope it works!

    Ashana wrote on June 5th, 2011
  34. can you make this without the eggs? i’m trying to avoid them because they upset my stomach.

    patchooli wrote on June 5th, 2011
    • lol. just saw the earlier question along the same lines. disregard my earlier comment :)

      patchooli wrote on June 5th, 2011
  35. I love meatza though i prefer some cheese as toppings! I am definently going to give this a try.

    Boris wrote on June 6th, 2011
  36. Has anyone made a meatza with no cheese? I want to hear if it’s still delicious …though I imagine it would be!

    Aura wrote on June 6th, 2011
  37. This looks amazing, I’ve never thought to use meat as a “crust” before. Definitely going to have to try this

    dani wrote on June 6th, 2011
  38. I made this last night so amazingly wonderful…but my parchment paper caught on fire while under the broiler LOL

    Prcs wrote on June 6th, 2011
    • OK that is funny! I think I’ll remove the parchment before broiling!

      Tamara wrote on June 7th, 2011
      • I used aluminum foil instead of parchment paper – works just fine and is not likely to catch on fire in the broiler!

        Also used homemade sauce – 1/2 can of diced tomatoes; 4 or 5 garlic cloves, finely chopped; oregano to taste. Easy way to avoid the added sugar in many store-bought sauces.

        AimeeB wrote on June 20th, 2011
  39. Wow you could also do that with ground turkey or chicken and make it even leaner. I love this idea. I am going to try it myself and spring it on my wife when she comes home from work on Friday!!!

    Ron McCallum wrote on June 6th, 2011
  40. Looks awesome – I think it will be dinner tonight!! Seems like it needs some kind of appropriate veg side though…

    Jim B. wrote on June 6th, 2011

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