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Photos by Shaina Olmanson |

Ten-Minute Taco Pizza

The following post is from Shaina of Food for My Family and Olmanson Photography:

source: Shaina Olmanson |

I do not have it all together, especially when it comes to managing life. I think this is common for families, especially working families or families with several children. (Four is several, right?) We often feel in control, the schedules align, the pieces fall into place. Then there are times when we’re getting through the day, where simple survival is the end goal.

Food is hard during those times. Sometimes I turn to a handful of trusted local restaurants, ones where I know the menu and the food, know what to order for the kids and that everyone will eat peacefully, but there are also times when even the trip out to those isn’t an option. Those times where I am left staring into the refrigerator and wondering: What in the world am I going to feed them?

This is one such meal. It is a conglomerate of leftovers, pantry items, of nontraditional ingredients blending together into something everyone in my house is comfortable with. It’s easy to adjust according to what you might have on hand, and I’ve learned to just keep some of these things stocked in the back rows of my cupboards (pantry, if you have one) waiting for the day when the grocery shopping was put off, homework was forgotten, the pipes broke, lightning struck the backyard.

source: Shaina Olmanson |

It’s simple pizza, made on flatbread – I had pitas, but naan or even flour tortillas would also work. It’s covered in a mix of canned items that I uncovered in desperation, and then a bit of the last bit of fresh left in the house. I serve it with plain Greek yogurt or sour cream both, depending on which one has a tad bit left in the bottom of the container. Most importantly, however, is that it is good, satisfying, and a meal. A legitimate meal where there was none ten minutes earlier.

Ten-Minute Taco Pizza
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A simple pizza made largely from pantry ingredients that can be thrown together in just ten minutes
Recipe type: main
Serves: 4-6
  • 4 6-8" flour pitas (can substitute naan, flatbread, or flour tortillas)
  • ½ cup salsa
  • 1 15-ounce can of pinto or black beans
  • 1 4-ounce jar green chilies, optional
  • 1 4-ounce jar sliced black olives, optional
  • ¼ cup sliced yellow onion
  • 1½ cups shredded cheese (mozzarella, cheddar, colby jack, etc.)
  • 1 cup shredded lettuce
  • 1 cup diced tomatoes
  • ½ cup sour cream or plain Greek yogurt
  • hot sauce, optional
  1. Preheat the oven to 450º F. Place the pitas on a baking sheet. Spread salsa over each pita. Distribute beans, chilies, olives, and onion evenly. Top with shredded cheese.
  2. Bake for 7-8 minutes, or until the cheese is completely melted and golden across the top. Remove from the oven and allow to col slightly before cutting.
  3. Top each pita pizza with lettuce and tomatoes. Serve with sour cream or yogurt and hot sauce.

Short of allowing ice cream or popcorn for dinner, what are your favorite last-minute meal tricks?

Shaina Olmanson is the freelance writer, photographer, and home cook behind Food for My Family. Cooking daily with and for her four kids and husband, Ole, drives her desire to inspire other families to do the same. Shaina is also the author of Desserts in Jars and contributes regularly to a variety of online sites and traditional print magazines.