Grilled Lemon Kale Ricotta Flatbread

Meghan Yager | Cake 'n Knife

Grilled lemon ricotta kale flatbread is the perfect grilled appetizer for your summer BBQ parties. It’s full of fresh, bold flavors and just a touch of Nielsen-Massey Vanilla’s Lemon Extract that brightens up the whole dish!

Grilled Lemon Kale Ricotta Flatbread Photo

The contributor was compensated by Nielsen-Massey Vanillas for her time in developing this recipe and post. All opinions are her own.

Summer is here, and that means one thing in my mind – it’s time to bust out the charcoal and start grilling all the things.

The typical staples are always in rotation on my grill – steaks, chicken, shrimp, vegetables, etc. Lately though, I’ve been all about the grilled pizzas and flatbreads.

As much as I wish my oven and pizza stone would produce that crispy crust I love, it never works like the simple charcoal grill in my backyard does.

Grilled Lemon Kale Ricotta Flatbread Picture

Grilled flatbreads are the perfect summer appetizer because you can throw just about anything on them and it’ll be a pure masterpiece. To offset all those heavy meats and veggies that usually grace my grill for dinnertime, I opted for a lighter, more refreshing grilled flatbread this time.

The lemon ricotta and kale combination is bright, light and fresh. The kale crisps up while it’s baking away on the grill, providing even more texture.

Then smooth and creamy ricotta gets a huge flavor injection from the Parmesan and even more so from the Nielsen-Massey pure lemon extract I used. It’s surprising how such a small amount of extract can go such a long way, but the lemon freshness really comes through without having to use much.

Grilled Lemon Kale Ricotta Flatbread Image

I can only imagine how delicious this extract would be with grilled chicken or grilled seafood! It’ll be your new favorite secret weapon to substitute for lemon juice and lemon zest.

Put that grill to good use for more than just the main event! Appetizers were meant to be grilled too, guys.

Pair this flatbread with a crisp cider or pale ale and you’ll be in grilled summer heaven. 

Grilled Lemon Kale Ricotta Flatbread Pic

Grilled Lemon Kale Ricotta Flatbread Recipe

    6 Servings


  • 1 pound Pizza Dough
  • 6 ounces Ricotta Cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese, Plus more for garnish
  • 1 teaspoon Nielsen-Massey Pure Lemon Extract
  • 1 cup Kale, Roughly chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper Flakes, Plus more for garnish
  • 1 clove Garlic, Minced
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Olive Oil, Plus more for garnish


  1. In a medium bowl, combine kale, 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, garlic and 1 1/2 tablespoon olive oil. Toss to coat and let stand in the refrigerator until ready to use.
  2. In a separate medium bowl, stir together ricotta, salt, pepper, Parmesan and lemon extract. Store in the refrigerator until ready to use.
  3. Gently roll out pizza dough into an approximately 14 x 8-inch large rectangle.
  4. Place the rolled out dough on a baking sheet that’s been flipped upside down and greased with olive oil.
  5. Transfer the dough directly to the grill over direct heat and cook for 1 minute, until the dough is stiff on the bottom.
  6. Turn over and grill until there are a few light grill marks on that side, approximately 30 seconds.
  7. Remove the flatbread dough from the grill. Spread with 1/2 the ricotta mixture, leaving a crust around the edge.
  8. Top with the marinated kale and then dollop the remaining ricotta mixture all over the dough.
  9. Return the flatbread to the grill and cook over indirect heat until the cheese is warmed through, approximately 5 minutes.
  10. Transfer to a cutting board, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with extra red pepper flakes and parmesan cheese as desired.
  11. Cut and serve with fresh lemon wedges.


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,
Meghan Yager

About Meghan

Meghan is a girl that's passionate about food - straightforward food that anyone can love. It's what you'll find on her blog, Cake n' Knife. There's not much food more straightforwardly delicious than an avocado, that's why Meghan is our avocado fanatic.