The Original Chicken BBQ Pizza, which I shared with my mom

California Pizza Kitchen in Sarasota is now offering take-and-bake pizzas, which are prepared fresh at the restaurant and just require a little extra TLC at home. It's an awesome meal choice if you want to enjoy a fresh pizza on your own time, instead of eating a sad leftover slice from the fridge.

Available for both takeout and delivery, the take and bake pizzas require very little extra time to finish cooking and come in standard pizza varieties, like pepperoni, veggie and Hawaiian. But California Pizza Kitchen also offers more unique flavorings like Thai chicken, carne asada and shrimp scampi. You can even get a take-home pizza made with cauliflower crust, which is a slightly healthier option.

The company's take and bake provides about six slices, perfect if you're looking to gorge. But it’s also a great size to share with someone else. I ordered the Original BBQ Chicken Pizza and shared it with my mom. All I did was pre-heat my oven to 450 degrees, remove the pizza from the plastic wrapping and bake it in the oven for about 10 minutes until the smoked Gouda cheese was melted, the onions and chicken were warmed up and the hand-tossed crust was golden brown. Then I garnished the pizza with barbecue sauce and fresh cilantro, and lunch was ready.

My mom is a thin crust girl, while I tend to prefer a thicker crust, but we both commented on how good the crust was—a nice compromise between thick and thin, crispy outside and fluffy inside. Definitely an upgrade over a cold leftover slice.

The pizzas cost between $14 and $17 (plus the cost of delivery if you're not picking up the pizza). Order online or call California Pizza Kitchen at (941) 203-6966. California Pizza Kitchen is located at 192 Cattleman Drive, Unit 1, Sarasota.

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