Cauliflower has proven to me that it can indeed be one of the most surprisingly versatile veggies–for example, we’ve made on Vegan American Princess cauliflower steaks, cauliflower mash, cauliflower couscous and more. (See the links below for more cauliflower recipes that will knock your socks off!)
But pizza crust made from cauliflower? I really needed to see this to believe it. After several attempts and varying the ingredients, the Vegan American Princess Cauliflower-Crust Pizza was born!
If you’re gluten-free or just trying to cut down on flour of any kind, this recipe uses “riced” cauliflower as the main ingredient and basis for the crust, with a minimum of gluten-free flour and couple of other ingredients and spices. With my trial and error process, I found that this crust will be nicely golden and crunchy around the edges and a bit softer towards the middle. I made mine using an entire rectangular baking sheet, so there’s lots of “middle” but I think it might be nice to make 2 smaller round pizzas or even 2 ambler square pizzas so that you have more crunchy, toasty edge and less softer middle.
As with many vegan recipes, the issue of “how is this going to hold together” arises because of the lack of eggs or another binding type food. Well, chia to the rescue! Chia seeds and/or ground chia powder combined with water creates quite a naturally binding, gelatinous consistency—perfect for recipes like this and providing lots of nutritional value too!
The toppings for your pizza are where the veggies really shine! I went in 2 directions here by using a pesto on one half and a tomato sauce on the other. Chopped tomatoes, spinach, vegan mozzarella cheese and basil leaves topped it all off. I’ve got a wonderful vegan pesto sauce recipe to share with you too!
Cauliflower Crust Pizza (vegan and gluten free)
by Ellen Francis, Vegan American Princess
- 1 head of cauliflower, cut into florets
- Chia Eggs: 4 Tablespoons of ground chia seeds + 1/3 cup water
- 1 Tablespoon of ground chia seeds or whole chia seeds (for crust)
- 1/2 cup of gluten-free flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 Tablespoon garlic powder
- 2 Tablespoons Dried Italian Seasoning (or if you don’t have, use some dried oregano, rosemary, basil and parsley)
- 2 Tablespoons of nutritional yeast
- Toppings of your choice: tomato sauce, chopped tomatoes, pesto sauce, fresh basil leaves, fresh baby spinach, vegan mozzarella cheese
- 1. Create the chia “eggs” by mixing in a small bowl, the 4 tablespoons of ground chia seeds and 1/3 cup of water. It will start getting kind of gooey right away. After mixing, place in the fridge for about 10 minutes or as long as it takes to rice the cauliflower.
- 2. Rice the cauliflower by placing several florets at a time in a food processor and pulsing until it looks like couscous. Empty the cauliflower into a large bowl. Repeat with each group of florets until all the cauliflower has been riced.
- 3. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees
- 4. Combine the riced cauliflower with the the chia “eggs” and the flour. Add the extra tablespoon of ground chia seeds, the spices and seasonings and mix well.
- 5. On a sprayed baking sheet, spread out the dough and press out onto the entire sheet evenly. Or take two sheets and make 2 separate round or square pizza shapes, or any shape you want. You can use round pans too.
- 6. Bake for about 25-30 minutes. Keep an eye on it. The edges will turn brown and the middle should be golden. If it needs more time to become golden and crispy, you can allow that but keep a close watch!
- 7. Remove from the oven and add sauce vegan cheese and toppings.
- 8. Put back in in the oven for about 10 minutes, watching that your toppings do not burn
Follow this link to make your own, Easy Vegan Pesto Sauce. Note about my pesto sauce–this recipe is very classic and delicious and everything you would expect from pesto, but I’ve been experimenting with other ways to do pesto! I’ve been adding avocado for a beautiful creamy texture and I’ve added frozen peas (that get pulverized in the food processor) for a gorgeous pop of bright green color! Also using walnuts instead of pine nuts are way more affordable and do the job!
For more great vegan cauliflower recipes:
Enjoy! xox Ellen