American Flatbread Cheese and Herb Pizza

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American Flatbread Cheese and Herb Pizza, originally uploaded by Aaron Landry.

I normally don’t review frozen pizzas but I’ve been lately intrigued by the premium brands and high-end styles. American Flatbread is a big player in this field with a few different varieties available across the country – shipped from Vermont.

The containers are traditional in the sense that they are a frozen pizza box but very unusual in the sense that they do not show a photo of the pizza on the front. All sides of the package are covered mostly in text and the shelf appeal is actually quite low.

Inside, however, is the rarest find in a frozen pizza box: a beautifully personally-crafted pizza with a crust made of hand-stretched dough. Every time I’ve purchased one of these they have been unique. A recent one was bent quite a bit on the edge but corrected itself nicely after heating it up. They’re par-baked and flash frozen, so it’s about as close as you can get to the wood-fire oven in Vermont (check out their process).

The cheeses and herbs tasted incredibly fresh, even after I noticed the expiration date on the back of the box was four months ago! The crust retained its crispiness while still being airy. The crust was just thick enough – a bit thicker than a Neapolitan-style pizza. When eating, I spent a considerable amount of time picking out all the different flavors. It was surprisingly well balanced. I feel bad calling this a “frozen pizza,” because it doesn’t do it justice.

It doesn’t replace eating this style of hand-made pizza in a good pizzeria, but it certainly is the next best thing I’ve tried from the frozen section even if it’s the same price as pizza delivery. American Flatbread has a couple restaurants around Vermont, one in Virginia with another opening in Portland, Oregon. I added them to my pizza to-do list.

Even if premium frozen pizza isn’t your style, try this once.

American Flatbread
Available in stores nationally; I picked a couple up at the Seward Co-op.