Ah, pizza, Nature’s perfect food! It’s slathered with cheese, which is my favorite food group (yes, it is a food group, along with chocolate and ice cream), and it has enough vegetables to let me declare it healthy. It’s fast, convenient, and delicious. What more can you ask for?
The only drawback for pizza is that it takes forever to arrive if you order from a good pizzeria that makes it fresh. Otherwise, no matter what brand you buy, store bought pizza still has that “frozen” taste, although some brands are better than others. So how to you balance pizzeria deliciousness with convenience? Today I discovered that Papa Murphy’s, which has three Orlando locations (Apopka, Ocoee, and Lake Mary), has the answer.
I was invited to check out Papa Murphy’s for myself as part of a group of bloggers. We had a tour of the restaurant, culminating in making our very own pizzas with an assortment of fresh ingredients. I was fascinated to see how the dough was made (the machine, shown below, also doubles as a cheese shredder and vegetable slicer) and marveled at the variety of pizzas that Papa Murphy’s offers.
So how is this convenient? You stop by Papa Murphy’s and pick up your freshly made pizza that’s all ready to pop into the oven. Bake it when you get home and voila! Instant home-baked pizza with that unbeatable taste that no frozen pizza can match. You can bake it up immediately or pick it up early and leave it in the fridge until dinner time. You don’t spend a lot of valuable time slaving over the stove, which means you can spend more time with your family, and they’ll appreciate the meal.
Papa Murphy’s also offers a little Mini Murph kit for kids to make their very own pizzas, as well as three dessert options for the kid in all of us. There’s fresh chocolate chip cookie dough, a cinnamon wheel, and (most tempting of all), a s’mores pizza. How can you go wrong when melding two of the most delicious food concepts, i.e. s’mores and pizza?
It was a lot of fun creating my very own pizza, but I discovered that it’s a lot harder than it looks to spread the ingredients evenly. Thankfully, manager Nathan Ball handled the trick part of getting the sauce and cheese onto the crust before turning it over to me to add sausage, pepperoni, veggies, and of course more cheese for the finishing touch. I think I added a touch of almost everything, from mushrooms and onions to sun dried tomatoes and artichoke hearts.
If you stop by yourself, you won’t have to go through that assembly process. It’s all done for you, right in front of your eyes, with the ingredients you select. There are pre-set pizzas the Cowboy, Gourmet Chicken Garlic, and Murphy’s Combo, or you can fully customize your own. There are even seasonal varieties, with taco pizza available right now.
The regular prices are very reasonable, and you’ll find coupons on the Papa Murphy’s website. But if you want a real steal of a deal, take advantage of $10 Tuesdays. Every Tuesday, you can get any size pizza for just $10. That means you can get the largest pizza and feed your family for an unbeatable price.
I love the Papa Murphy’s concept, both from the family standpoint and as an idea for the tourist area. There isn’t a location near the theme parks at the moment, but Nathan says they plan to expand. This seems like the perfect product for tourists who stay in vacation homes or villas and want a fast, hot, and hearty meal they can prepare in their kitchen facilities without a lot of fuss.
You can see my finished handiwork in the left hand photo. It’s not exactly a work of art, but heck, it’s a pizza so it doesn’t have to be fancy!
So what does the pizza come out like once you get it home? I was excited to whisk my creation back to my kitchen and try it out for lunch. Here’s what it looks like fresh out of the oven and ready to be consumed:
I’m a pizza snob, since I’m originally from Chicago, and I can honestly say that I really enjoyed this pizza. I’m especially fussy about the sauce, and it was soooo good, as was the sausage. As a cheese fanatic, I was very pleased that the cheese was so fresh and tasty. By the time I was done, I barely had room for the s’mores pizza, but of course I managed to fit it in. Graham cracker, marshmallows, and ooey gooey chocolate…what else can I say? Yum!
Papa Murphy’s gets a big thumbs up from me, and I’m hoping and eagerly awaiting the day they expand with a store in the attractions area.