Healthy Pizza? My Thoughts From a Papa Murphy's Kitchen Tour

Several blogging moms were invited to tour our local Papa Murphy's Take 'N' Bake Pizza kitchen to learn how they source and prepare their food. When my co-worker invited me, I wasn't really sure what to expect. The other bloggers weren't necessarily blogging about health and I'm always cautious to not be "bought" by food companies. I try to keep my information based on evidence, rather than persuasion.

[FYI - to date I have never been paid to talk, write or promote any food item that I wouldn't consider healthy or buy for myself or my family. To be honest, I've only been paid to write about one food product. My budget wishes I could tell you it was more, haha! If it has anything to do with this website, it actually turns out to be a donation to Cancer Services, the non-profit I work for. $ put to good use to help our community!!]

Anyway - back to my Papa Murphy's trip! I cautiously elected to sign up and go. Plus, I knew I would get to go home with a pizza for free - so that's always nice! Here is what I experienced. Many things I was pleasantly surprised about!

Papa Murphy's Pizza Dough
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This part I found fascinating! Having worked at Domino's in high school, I had experienced pizza dough that was delivered already mixed and ready to be rolled out. At Papa Murphy's, they get the flour in, but actually use this ENORMOUS mixer to make dough every day.

Many of their pizzas come on thin crust. They also have original crust and a thicker "pan" crust pizza as well. I personally like the thin crunchy crust best, which is fortunate, because after I came home I decided to look up the nutrition info.

You know that I am pretty picky when it comes to ingredients and nutrition. Most of the time, I would prefer to make things myself. However, making pizza crust is NOT EASY! Nor fast.

Here's the link for the nutrition info.
And the link for the ingredient list.

I was glad to see that in the nutrition info, all the pizzas had 0g trans fat. However, just because the nutrition facts say 0g, doesn't mean there is none. That just means there is less than 0.5 grams PER SERVING. A serving of the pizza is 1/12th. I'm gonna say that we eat at least 2-3 servings each!

Good news though - when I looked through the actual ingredient list, the thin crust pizza indeed had no hydrogenated oils in it. I can't say the same for the other crusts, so I would suggest sticking to thin crust.

Papa Murphy Pizza Toppings

So i was also very surprised to find out that the veggie toppings come in as whole veggies and the staff at papa murphys chop them up each day. Here are some photos of what they've got.

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In addition to hand chopping the veggies, they also shred the cheese from BIG blocks! None of that pre-shredded bag stuff for these pizzas. They have big machines to shred the blocks.

Pizza, Salad and Other Items


IMG_0079.JPGWhen I walked into the store, I was actually greeted with a cool case of salads. They would be a good size for 2-3 people and sell for $5 each. A pretty great deal and wonderful pair with your veggie pizza. You can get your raw veggies and cooked veggies all in one place!

In addition to the prepacked salads, you can have a 'make your own salad' just like you do with the pizza. Pick your lettuce and your toppings and they can customize it for you. Pretty awesome!

My co-worker was extra clever and took her salad home (spinach, chicken, parmesan cheese, sun dried tomatoes) and used it on a pizza crust she had at home!

In addition to the salads and pizzas, made to order, you can buy just the dough for $2, or buy the crust rolled out for $3. Another one of the bloggers advised that the dough could be used to make some great cinnamon rolls. You pick the filling!

Cancer Dietitian's Pizza

IMG_0098.JPGI got to pick whatever pizza I wanted to take home with me. They can customize all types of pizza, from different sauces (garlic, tomato, basil tomato and chili thai), cheeses and toppings. I picked 1/2 of the veggie and 1/2 with margarita chicken pizza on thin crust.

You can see that it is loaded with veggies, many of the top cancer fighting foods like garlic, onions tomatoes, and leafy greens. I also added on a salad to have with it.

With take n bake, you take the pizza home and preheat to 425, then back for 12-16 minutes. Ta da! So tasty!!

The Bottom Line

I found this to be a very fresh and relatively healthy option for take-out pizza. When you compare it to other pizza delivery/take out options this is one of the best! You have REAL ingredients, plenty of veggies (not like the token 'veggie pizza' with just a few sprinkled veggies from other pizza places).

I would stick to the trans-fat free thin crust and plan to have a salad on the side. Also - a good thing to note for anyone in Winston-Salem - Tuesdays are $10 pizzas! Any size, any kind. THAT is a deal!

IMG_0093.JPGThanks to the owner for inviting us and showing us around. The only thing that would make this even more amazing would be a whole wheat crust. Unfortunately, I'm not sure that there's demand for that..... yet. :-)

- Julie


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1 Comment

So did you find out if this is standard business practice for all Papa Murphys or if there is local policies that may differ? That's one of the few Los Alamos restaurants!

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Julie Lanford MPH, RD, CSO, LDN published on May 6, 2014 3:37 PM.

Color Matters: White Foods are Cancer Fighting Too!! was the previous entry in this blog.

Summer Smoothies Part 1: Three Yummy Recipes! is the next entry in this blog.

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