try something new: cauliflower crust pizza.

by Janetha on March 5, 2012

in how to

we eat a lot of pizza in our house. it’s quick. it’s tasty. it allows us to use up random ingredients in the fridge.

up until tonight, we always used the pre-made dough from whole foods for our pizzas. well, aside from that time in 2008 that i made meatza–pizza with a crust made out of meat. anyway, tonight i tried something new: cauliflower pizza crust.

i learned about cauliflower pizza crust during my low carb craze of 2008, but i have no idea why i never made it. i have seen it all over the internet over the years, but it still never piqued my interest enough to make it. well, my two co-workers (and livefit buddies!), amanda and kerryne (YES it’s the same kerryne from blog land–that’s why we hired her!) have been eating this cauliflower crust pizza like crazy. they’ve been raving about it, so i decided it was high time i gave it a shot!

i have seen several different recipes around the interwebs, but my recipe was adapted from a combo of only two of the many.

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makes one 9″ x 16″ rectangle pizza (twelve 3″ x 4″ slices)
total time: 35 minutes
adapted from stef and recipe girl

[pinit]

ingredients

  • 1/2 head of cauliflower (yield 2 cups after grated/food processed)
  • 1 egg
  • 2 oz finely shredded cheese of choice (use a medium-softness cheese like mozzarella, cheddar, colby jack, pepper jack, etc)
  • 3 TB nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp minced garlic (from the jar or fresh)
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp ranch seasoning
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1/8 tsp ground sea salt
  • toppings of choice (see directions)

directions

  1. preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  2. grate raw cauliflower using a food processor or by hand with a grater. i am lazy and so i used my food processor–i pulsed until it reached a finely grated consistency.
  3. microwave cauliflower for eight minutes and then let cool.
  4. while cauliflower is cooling, prep your toppings of choice. choose a sauce (like marinara, pesto, barbecue, or alfredo), a cheese or two (feta, mozzarella, asiago, goat cheese) and your favorite toppings (sausage, chicken, pepperoni, bell peppers, mushrooms, olives, artichokes, onions.. okay, i will stop now!)
  5. once cauliflower has cooled to almost room temperature, combine it in a bowl with the remaining ingredients (aside from the toppings, of course.)
  6. spray a nonstick baking sheet or line with a silicone mat. (if you don’t own a silicone mat, you really need to get with it and buy one. they are the BEST.) spread mixture evenly on the pan so it forms a 9″ x 16″ rectangle.. give or take.
  7. bake for 12-15 minutes until edges are slightly browned.
  8. layer sauce and toppings on baked crust.
  9. place pizza back in oven until all the cheese is melted (if using cheese) and toppings are warmed through; about five minutes.
  10. slice & eat immediately. enjoy!

step by step photo tutorial

preheat oven to 450 degrees.

grate raw cauliflower using a food processor or by hand with a grater. i am lazy and so i used my food processor–i pulsed until it reached a finely grated consistency.

Picnik collage

microwave cauliflower for eight minutes and then let cool. it won’t look much different coming out of the microwave as it did going in!

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while cauliflower is cooling, prep your toppings of choice.

we chose marinara sauce.. i bought this brand because the lady on the label gave me the “buy me!” eyes.

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our protein of choice was italian chicken sausages by archer farms. this was the first time i’d tried these and they were great!

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we doubled up on the cheeses: mozzarella and feta.

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for the toppings, marshall picked orange and yellow bell peppers and.. wait for it.. mushrooms! HE said mushrooms. i am praising the heavens right now. i sautéed the veggies in a bit of white balsamic vinegar.

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i also added some dried basil, salt, and pepper. i cooked them just barely so they were still slightly crisp. random shout out: that cute wooden spoon was a gift from eden!

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once cauliflower has cooled to almost room temperature, combine it in a bowl with the remaining ingredients (aside from the toppings, of course.)

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this is a KEY ingredient.. everything tastes better with ranch. and you already dip your pizza crust in ranch, right? why not put ranch IN your pizza crust. duh.

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side note: “dip pity-do-dah–the dip that does it all”?! I LOVE THAT SLOGAN and just noticed it for the first time ever.. and have been using this stuff for years.

to measure my spices, i used these cute owl measuring spoons that were a gift from katie. mannn, blog friends rule.

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spray a nonstick baking sheet or line with a silicone mat. (if you don’t own a silicone mat, you really need to get with it and buy one. they are the BEST.) spread mixture evenly on the pan so it forms a 9″ x 16″ rectangle.. give or take.

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here is a photo to give you an idea of how thick it should be.

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bake for 12-15 minutes until edges are slightly browned.

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layer sauce and toppings on baked crust.

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place pizza back in oven until all the cheese is melted (if using cheese) and toppings are warmed through; about five minutes.

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melty goodness achieved!

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slice & eat immediately. enjoy!

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i ended up eating this and then going back for two more slices. it’s a good thing penny and randy don’t get pizza for dinner, because marshall and i gobbled the whole thing up.

nutritional info (all nutritional info calculated on thedailyplate.com) for entire CRUST recipe, no toppings:

Screen Shot 2012 03 05 at 9 53 59 PM

yes, that is the ENTIRE crust. so eating half of the pie.. or heck, even the whole thing, is totally acceptable.

here are the stats per slice (based on twelve 3″ x 4″ slices) with the toppings in this post:

Screen Shot 2012 03 05 at 9 59 41 PM

great stats, right?! and for the record/calculation purposes: i used 3 chicken sausages, 2 whole bell peppers, 4 oz mushrooms, 2 TB white balsamic vinegar, ~3 oz mozzarella, ~3 oz feta, and ~3/4 cup sauce.

my thoughts on the crust: this was DELICIOUS. it didn’t hold together as much as i’d expected (like normal pizza) but eating it with a fork wasn’t an issue. i have thumbs and have been using a fork for decades, so that worked out well. the bottom of the crust browned nicely, but the top wasn’t quite as crisp.

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it didn’t matter, it tasted amazing. i am really glad i saw that stef added nutritional yeast to hers (which is why i added it to mine), because that lent a cheesy, nutty flavor to the crust that i really enjoyed.

clearly.

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can’t wait to make this again! thanks for pushing me into it, amanda.

Qs~

what nontraditional recipes have you tried? did you love or loathe the results?
i have made cauliflower mashed “potatoes” and liked them (i did half potatoes, half cauliflower) and the meatza pizza that i mentioned at the beginning of this post. i want to try egg white ice cream, but kerryne had a couple flops with that one so i am hesitant!

xo. janetha g.

p.s. could you all do me a solid and take this 30 second sugar survey for my friends at the simply bar?? just tell them i sent ya. thanks!

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