Grain Free Cauliflower Pizza Crust Recipe


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Final pizzaI’ve often been asked about making a pizza crust with cauliflower.  Yes, I’ve tried it, I answer (without excitement).  Yes, it works, I say (unenthusiastic-ally).  

So, when my buddy Richard at Flying J Farm (an amazing farm committed to non-GMO, organic farming, sustainability, and feeding their cattle grass only [side note:  do you SEE how happy his cows are in the picture?!]) invited us for pizza and a movie at the farm’s cabin, he challenged me to make a cauliflower pizza crust, and I have to admit my first thought was something like, “Well, I guess if I have to…Flying J cows

Why have I not been enthusiastic about this until now?  To be honest, it comes down to the process with the cauliflower, and the smell of it!  I’ve just never been a fan!  I’m sure many of you are shaking your head, shocked that this girl who is all about health would say anything negative about a wonderful vegetable like cauliflower.

Cauliflower messMy excuse (and yes, it is one) is that the mess I get when processing it (tons of teensy pieces of sticky cauliflower in every crevice of the food processor) combined with the smell (which I don’t find appetizing), has pretty much kept processed cauliflower-anything very low on my list of priorities…until now!

So, why the change of heart?  Two reasons!  One…consider all the amazing benefits of cauliflower in this article by fellow blogger Helen of Well Being Secrets…she has outlined many health benefits of this superfood (click here to read the article on her website).  And for two, it comes down to this new convenience, courtesy of Trader Joe’s (read my post here).

While packing up for the event at Flying J Farm, I haphazardly threw a few things together – a bowl, a spoon, a fork, oregano, sea salt, and some shredded mozzarella cheese (I shred my own to avoid the fillers placed in commercially grated cheese, which are often corn or potato starch), my pizza stone and cutter, and a bag of the new Trader Joe’s riced cauliflower (see post referenced above).  I knew I had an outdoor sink and a wood brick oven available as tools at the farm, plus according to the invite everyone was bringing either ingredients for the crust or toppings.  So, that was it!  I didn’t even look up the recipe before I left!

I’ll fully admit that I knew I didn’t have everything that the recipe had called for, because I figured that between everyone we’d have all items covered.  Well, I guessed that wrong, and I quickly realized I needed a way to make some cauliflower crusts or go hungry, since the only other pizza available was a wheat crust.

Kids eating itSo my bottom line message to you is that if I could pull this off in an outdoor setting, without all of the tools and things I’d normally have in my kitchen, I assure you this can be made at home without being very fancy at all!  I personally love to “wing it” with making different foods, and while not everyone always appreciate the outcome, in this case we’ve got a winner (evidenced by the kid’s hands that were eating it – the picture is blurry because their hands were moving so fast!)

Here’s how I did it!

Recipe

Ingredients:

  • form the crust2 eggs, lightly beaten (Richard was kind enough to provide farm fresh)
  • 1/2- 3/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (or any white cheese including parmesan)
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt (remember to use pure sea salt; watch out for additives like dextrose/maltodextrin)
  • 1/2 bag riced cauliflower from Trader Joe’s (if you don’t have this available, you’ll have to do it the messier and smelly way, but it’s not THAT bad – just chop the head of cauliflower into pieces small enough for a food processor or blender, chop it very fine, then place into a clean thin towel or muslin to squeeze out the moisture; measure out about 1 cup or 6 ounces)
  • DAIRY FREE/PALEO:  Omit the cheese and 1 egg; add 2 Tablespoons of almond flour and 1 Tablespoon of olive oil and choose the pre-heated stone method with parchment paper (below)

Pizza on plateMethod:

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees
  • If you have a pizza stone, you can place the crust directly on the stone (if gluten-safe) or for an easier release, use parchment paper with the stone (you can also use a baking sheet)
    • To use with parchment paper, pre-heat the stone in the oven and prepare the parchment paper by lightly greasing it with some olive oil or organic coconut oil
    • To use without parchment paper, do not pre-heat the stone
  • It’s important to get the moisture out of the cauliflower as much as possible; in this case I didn’t have anything to squeeze it out, so I placed half of the bag in the skillet and put it in the brick oven for a few minutes until it was just starting to brown.  At home, just place it in a dry skillet over medium heat.
  • While the cauliflower is “de-moisturizing,” place the eggs into a medium sized mixing bowl and whisk them lightly with a fork until they are slightly beaten
  • Add the cheese, oregano, and sea salt
  • Add in the lightly browned, dry “riced” cauliflower
  • Stir to combine; it will be fairly loose and like a thick liquid
  • Form the crust on the parchment paper (if using) or directly on the stone; you can just pat the “dough” into whatever shape you’d prefer
  • Bake for 8-10 minutes; open the oven and check to see the progress – the edges should be golden brown
  • Bake for another 5-8 minutes or until the center is firm
  • Add sauce, cheese, and toppings and bake until cheese is melted, about 8 minutes (I added fresh basil, red pepper, my homemade sausage using our exclusive seasoning, and some delicious goat cheese)

Let me know how it goes in your kitchen (or outdoor oven!)

-Jen of The GGF Gourmet

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4 Responses so far.

  1. Michelle says:

    Is de-moisturation still necessary with Trader Joe’s riced cauliflower?

    • GGF Gourmet says:

      Hello Michelle,

      Yes, I would still take the moisture out. If the cauliflower thaws, it will be full of moisture. If you leave it frozen, the moisture will likely leech out while baking, and your crust may not form. I have found that this is easiest to do by roasting the Trader Joe’s in a pan for a few minutes, rather than squeezing out the moisture after thawing.
      I hope this helps! Let me know how this works for you.

      -Jen

  2. tammy says:

    Michelle, they sell the califlower rice fresh in a bag or plastic container in the produce section, im sure you could place in processor to rice it even more, do you think you would still have to squeeze the water out, can you use the fresh and not have to heat?

    • GGF Gourmet says:

      Hello Tammy,

      Even with the fresh, it’s necessary to squeeze out the water. I have found this process to be much easier by simply roasting it in a dry skillet. Unless of course, you prefer the workout with the squeezing. 🙂

      Let me know how this works out for you!

      -Jen

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