This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy
Pizza balls, pizza bites, whatever you choose to call them - this appetizer is pillowy goodness and extra cheesy in every bite. These dough balls are made with mozzarella and parmesan cheese and topped with italian seasoning for the perfect simple appetizer recipe. Serve this at your next gathering, it won’t disappoint!
You might be surprised to learn that this was the first recipe I ever created. I created this recipe long before I started The Wellness Walnut. These pizza balls were invented when I was still in elementary school. I remember watching my mom create fun recipes all the time and I wanted in on the action. I was really trying hard to think of something my mom had never done before… and thus pizza balls were born!
These pizza balls are cinch to make. Only five ingredients and 25 minutes to make from start to finish. You start with a pre-made dough and cut it into even pieces, fill it with cheese, roll it up, and then top with italian seasoning. Pop them in the oven for approximately 15 minutes and boom you have a crowd pleasing appetizer!
I love an assembly line kind of dish, it makes them so fun to make with the family or a group of friends. Cut dough, add cheese, roll it around. It’s so easy and everyone will want in on the fun!
With Super Bowl Sunday quickly approaching, this would be a fantastic recipe to bring to a gathering. It’s a great recipe to bring to any gathering actually! You can make the balls ahead of time, place them in your baking pan all ready to go and then pop them in the oven right when you arrive or right when your guest arrives. They only take about 15 minutes to bake so you won’t have to worry about taking up too much precious oven time if there are other things that need baking time!
What Kind of Dough is Best for Pizza Balls? To make this recipe super simple, I recommend choosing a store-bought dough. My dough of choice is the Pillsbury crescent roll sheet dough! It’s so simple to work with and it rolls out into a nice flat surface for you to fill with all the yummy toppings! You can 100% use any type of pizza dough you want. I’ve been wanting to try this recipe with Trader Joe’s garlic and herb pizza dough! Regular pizza dough would also work well, you would just have to roll it out and slice into even pieces.
What Toppings are Best for Pizza Balls? Whatever your heart desires! This recipe is completely customizable to your liking. This recipe is a baseline giving you the tips and techniques for the perfect pizza ball. Feel free to add more cheese, sausage, pepperoni, sauteed veggies, whatever you prefer! Just be sure to chop everything up nice and small so it will fit when rolled up in the dough. We want to avoid toppings popping out and getting messy.
Who’s ready for some pizza balls?
Ingredients in Pizza Balls
Pillsbury Crescent Roll Dough: I find this dough so easy to work with and it gets a nice golden brown color to it when baked in the oven. However, you can always substitute for any store-bought or homemade pizza dough, just following baking instructions from the package or recipe when baking.
Mozzarella Cheese: A big ball of mozzarella cheese cut into bite-sized pieces or opt for the small mozzarella balls that you can halve and pop right into the dough!
Parmesan Shreds: Shaved parmesan cheese to add more cheesiness and compliment the mozzarella!
Italian Seasoning: Rolling these dough balls in Italian seasoning before baking adds a ton of flavor to this appetizer dish! You can find Italian seasoning in any grocery store, or combine a mix of your own using basil, oregano, and parsley. Don’t skip this ingredient, the aromas alone make this dish scream Italian!
Pizza Sauce: We gotta have tomato sauce, it wouldn’t be pizza without it! But including in the dough balls themselves would get really messy, so we’re going to use it as a dipping sauce instead!
Optional Add-Ins: Pepperoni, sausage, mushrooms, peppers. Choose whatever you prefer, or none at all! These pizza balls are great with just cheese. If you do choose to add more toppings, be sure to cook them beforehand and chop them up nice and small so they fit inside the balls.
Kitchen Tools Needed for this Recipe
How to Make Pizza Balls
Step One: Preheat the oven to 375° F and line a baking tray with parchment paper. Spray lightly with olive oil so pizza balls won’t stick during baking.
Step Two: Unravel the crescent roll dough onto a cutting board and cut into 12 even slices per roll of dough.
Step Three: Place one cube of mozzarella and a pinch of shaved parmesan per dough ball.
Step Four: Pinch the corners of each dough slice together and then roll together with your hands to form a ball shape.
Step Five: Add the italian seasoning to a small plate and roll each dough ball into the seasoning.
Step Six: Place the completed dough balls on the prepared baking tray. Bake in the oven for 10-13 minutes until puffy and golden brown.
Step Seven: While pizza balls are baking, warm pizza sauce in the microwave for 1 minute.
Step Eight: Remove pizza balls from the oven, serve with warmed pizza sauce, and enjoy!