Monday, May 27, 2013

The BEST Dairy Free Cauliflower Pizza Crust!

Alright, alright, here it is! The best dairy free cauliflower pizza crust! You've hoped, you've dreamed, and you've begged for it (really you've just left a few comments on my BEST Cauliflower Pizza Crust Recipe, but same thing) and I have finally delivered!


Since posting my Best Cauliflower Crust Pizza Recipe you guys have left so many nice comments saying how much you've enjoyed the recipe! I especially love when I get tagged in Instagram pics of the cauliflower crust pizzas that you've made and I get to see the amazing toppings you all have come up with. There are some beautiful cauliflower crust pizzas out there! But there is one question that keeps popping up in the comments, and that is how to make the crust without cheese. Fear not, my friends! It's easy and just as delicious to make a cauliflower pizza crust with no cheese! And guess what? No cheese, no flour, no grains means it pretty much perfectly paleo. A yummy delicious paleo pizza crust, it's a dream come true. And yes, it does still hold up to being picked up like a regular slice of pizza, just like my other cauliflower crust. Although, this piece was a little weighed down by the sheer amount of deliciousness I threw on top. More on that later.


The keys to this cheese-less cauliflower crust are pretty much the same as my regular cauliflower pizza crust. Preheat your pizza stone or baking sheet in the oven first, wring the water out of the cauliflower, and cook your pizza on oiled parchment or tinfoil. But here's some more deets on how I did it without the cheese. I followed my normal method of using the food processor to make cauliflower "snow," or "rice" as some people call it, but I think "snow" is so much more fun to say. I microwaved it for 4 minutes, I don't know exactly why 4 minutes, but this number seems to work for me. Three minutes would probably work also. A few of you commented that you don't microwave your food. Some have had luck squeezing the water out without microwaving it or cooking it a pan instead. Once the cauliflower was cool enough to handle, I placed in a tea towel and wringed the water out. You could go crazy with this step, one commentor even said they ripped their tea towel! But honestly you don't have to get every single last drop of water out. Just give it a few good wrings to get most of the water out. The cauliflower will now look more like powder, almost like grainy flour. Next I added my other ingredients - minus the cheese of course! I added my spices, 2 tablespoons almond flour, some nutritional yeast for cheesy flavor, but not a lot since I'm still on the fence about how I feel about nutritional yeast (I'm new to using it), an egg, and a tablespoon of olive oil to help with the binding in lieu of the cheese. I shaped my crust on an oiled sheet of parchment paper and slid it into the oven and onto the hot pizza stone using a thin plastic cutting board, a pizza peel would work also if you are fancy and own one of those! One note about the cooking time, I pre-baked the crust longer than I did with my cauliflower crust that uses cheese. I wanted this crust to get crispy and golden brown and without the cheese in it, it needed a longer cooking time. I also knew that my second cooking time would be less since I wouldn't be melting cheese and I would be using toppings that I already heated up before placing them on the pizza.


Now about those toppings! I went heavy on my toppings to make up for the lack of cheese on the pizza, although you will see a light dusting of freshly grated Parmesan on my pizza. I'm sorry. I couldn't help it. It was like a cheese loving robot took over my body and grabbed the mircroplane and wedge of parm and kept repeating "MUST HAVE CHEESE" very loudly while I mentally protested, "No, you can't! It's supposed to be a cheese free pizza!" Damn cheese-loving-body-taking-over-robot. But basically, you can top your cheese free cauliflower pizza crust with whatever you want, assuming you don't have a cheese-loving-body-taking-over-robot lurking in your kitchen somewhere, but I will include my recipe for this delicious BBQ pork pizza, because it was damn delicious and I think you should make it. The cheese loving robot also thinks you should make it, even if you make it with no cheese on top. Any leftover shredded meat would be good on this pizza, but I recommend my pulled pork with homemade BBQ sauce.


But before I give you the recipe, the cheese loving robot would like to add, "MAKE THIS CRUST NOW. TOP IT WITH WHATEVER YOU LIKE, EVEN IF YOU DON'T LIKE CHEESE, WEIRDO."
Geez, cheese loving robot, there is no need to yell! And some people just can't eat cheese. Have a heart. 
"I AM A ROBOT, I HAVE NO HEART."

Ok, this is getting weird. Recipe here.....

The BEST Dairy Free Cauliflower Pizza Crust 

Makes approx. 1 - 10 inch pizza crust 

1 medium sized head of cauliflower - should yield close to 3 cups once processed
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon dried basil (crush it even more between your fingers)
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano (crust it even more between you fingers)
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
optional a few shakes of crushed red pepper
2 tablespoons almond meal
1 tablespoon (or more if desired) nutritional yeast (you could also omit this entirely if you like)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 egg

nonstick cooking oil

Place a pizza stone in the oven, or baking sheet if you don't have a pizza stone. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. On a cutting board, place a large piece of parchment paper and spray it with nonstick cooking oil or brush the parchment with olive oil. 

Wash and throughly dry a small head of cauliflower. Don't get one the size of your head unless you are planning on making 2 pizzas. Cut off the florets, you don't need much stem. Just stick with the florets. Pulse in your food processor for about 30 seconds, until you get powdery snow like cauliflower. See above photo. You should end up with about 3 cups cauliflower "snow". Place the cauliflower in a microwave safe bowl and cover. Microwave for 4 minutes. Dump cooked cauliflower onto a clean tea towel and allow to cool for a bit before attempting the next step.

Once cauliflower is cool enough to handle, wrap it up in the dish towel and wring the water out of it. You want to squeeze out as much water as possible. This will ensure you get a chewy pizza like crust instead of a crumbly mess. 

Dumped cauliflower into a bowl. Now add all your spices, your almond meal, your nutritional yeast (if using), and your olive oil. Mix the mixture to incorporate all the ingredients. Now add your egg and mix away again. Hands tend to work best. 

Once mixed together, use your hands to form the dough into a crust on your oiled parchment paper. Pat it down thoroughly, you want it nice and tightly formed together. Don't make it too thick or thin either.

Using a cutting board slide the parchment paper onto your hot pizza stone or baking sheet in the oven. Bake for about 12 minutes, or until it starts to turn golden brown and the edges crisp up. Remove from oven.

***UPDATE - My new oven requires that I pre-cook the crust for closer to 15 to 20 minutes to get it a nice golden brown. Go off of looks rather than time! You want the edges to start to be crispy brown but not too much so that when you cook it again after adding toppings it will burn. 

Add your toppings (I recommend already cooked toppings, like shredded meat or sautéed veggies) and slide parchment with topped pizza back in the hot oven and cook for another 5 minutes until the toppings are warm. If using cheese for a topping, you can pop the pizza under the broiler to get the cheese melted fast without burning the crust. 

Test your patience and allow it to cool for a minute or two. Probably closer to two. Then using a pizza cutter and a spatula serve up your delicious grain and dairy cauliflower crust pizza!

To top the pizza you can make your own 30 minute pizza sauce using my recipe! Or to make the pizza in these pictures, caramelize half a sliced up onion on the stove in olive oil for about 30 minutes. Tip: I add chicken broth or sometimes even just water to my caramelized onions to keep them from burning and to reduce the amount of oil I need to use. Once your onions are caramelized, add any cooked shredded meat you have to the onions to reheat the meat. My pulled pork would be amazing!  Then, simply top your cauliflower crust with desired amount of BBQ sauce, I recommend using the cooked version of my homemade BBQ sauce, and the meat and onion mix. Add 1 diced up roasted red pepper, and a dusting of parmesan if desired. Cook for 5 minutes. Remove from oven and top with 1 diced up avocado. 

Enjoy! 

P.S. Remember my story about not having an egg when I made this cauliflower crust for you before? Yeah, well that happened again. Luckily it was on a weekend and not the morning before a work day and I made my husband run out and get me eggs. He also came back with beer. Perfect lunch? I think so. 

59 comments:

  1. What flour could I use instead of almond?

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    1. Any nut flour? Or coconut?

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    2. I wouldn't recommend coconut, since it is very absorbent. I'm also not a big fan of coconut flour. I would say just skip the almond flour all together. Your should be fine!

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    3. I'm going to try oats! Just throw plain oats in a food processor until flour-esque. It has proved to be a great substitute in other recipes I have tried.

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    4. Hi! Just an update I thought might be helpful.... I made this crust twice now with coconut flour and it turned out great both times! I also go really heavy on the herbs. I think ive eaten enough garlic in my life that my tongue cant taste it anymore. 3 chopped garlic cloves plus powdered garlic... and oregano basil and parsley from my garden along with red pepper flakes and onion salt instead of regular salt. I also cant have cheese on my diet, but Trader Joes Marinara is so flavorful. Topped with sauteed bell peppers, onion, spinach, pepperoni, turkey sausage (and of course another clove of garlic) The result - AMAZING! My boyfriend cant get enough. Thank you for sharing :-) -Jenny J

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    5. This sounds great, I had the crust with cheese but can't have dairy any more. I have wanted pizza but didn't realize I could make the recipe without the cheese, and thanks Jenny J, for the spicy ideas, they sound great. REO

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  3. My boyfriend and I made this and your "regular" cauliflower pizza the other night and they were SO DELICIOUS. He was raving about it all night and kept saying this was definitely something he wanted to repeat. I've tried other cauliflower pizzas before that were good, but I loved that this one didn't use a ton of cheese in the crust. Thank you so much for a FANTASTIC recipe!!

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  4. yum yum yum! this was so delicious! pleasantly surprised

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  5. This recipe looks delicious! I was originally looking for a crust to use for a quiche but I think I could use this one. Do you have any thoughts about this? Thanks.

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    1. I think you could totally use it as a quiche crust! Just prebake the crust some. Let me know how it turns out!

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    2. Michelle - this. is. AWESOME!! have you tried freezing dough for future use? thank you!!

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  6. I always say I'm going to try this but I get much too lazy. Can I just come over and eat your samples once you're done shooting them? Hahaha!

    xo

    Ashley

    Southern (California) Belle

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    1. When I finally get back to cooking you are welcome to come over and be my taste tester!

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  7. I've had much luck with cauliflower crusts lately, but mine always include mozzarella. I'll have to try it without dairy...

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    1. I have another recipe on the site for a crust that includes cheese.

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  8. Thanks so much for sharing this gluten and dairy free, it worked great with some adjustments since we had more than 3 cups worth. with a little over 4 cups of food processed cauliflower, we added an extra egg along with some extra almond meal. This pizza is a real treat for gluten free diet. :)

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  9. Has anyone frozen this? Does it freeze well? Thanks!

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  10. I just made this recipe and it came out perfect. Thank you!

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  11. This looks amazing! Any way to cook the cauliflower without microwaving it? Would steaming it work? Does it have to be cooked before making the crust?

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  12. I've sauteed it rather than microwaving it and it turned out great! You just need to soften it so you can squeeze out as much liquid as possible.

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  13. This seems like it would be good baked til crisp then cut into 'chips'.. for say.. spinach dip? Ever tried anything like that?

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  14. Made this but used flaxseed "eggs" and tapioca flour. Instead of pizza, I just cut this up into breadsticks! So good!!! Thanks for the recipe

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  15. Oh my! This was so good! Glad I found this recipe. My toddler even loved it and so did my husband. It was hard to believe I was eating healthy "pizza".

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  16. What is a tea towel? Is it the same as a cheese cloth?

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    Replies
    1. it's just a dish towel...any light weight towel would work.

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  17. Why no coconut flour? The only oil or flour I can use is coconut and also no yeast. If I omit the flour and yeast will it still crisp up? I have made cauliflower tortillas but they were soft. Defiantly not usable as a pizza crust.

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    1. I personally don't like coconut flour. I keep trying it and I just don't like it. Plus, it is very absorbent,so it could work in this recipe or it could absorb too much so you don't have a dough. I wouldn't be able to say. Give it a try!

      I do think if you omit the almond flour and yeast it will still crisp up.

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  18. This looks amazing, will try tomorrow night for dinner. Two quick questions, is almond meal the same as almond flour? And do you know the calories in this recipe??

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    1. Yep, almond flour is actually generally a little finer, and will work totally the same as almond meal in this recipe.

      And I don't know the calories. Sorry. you could add all the ingredients into an online tool to figure it out.

      Hope you enjoy it!

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  19. I don't own microwave. How do I cook the cauliflower stove top?

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  20. I can't thank you enough for this recipe, it's exactly what I was looking for!

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  21. This is a good post. This post give truly quality information. I'm definitely going to look into it.Really very useful tips are provided here.thank you so much.Keep up the good works.
    Gluten Free Pizza Crusts

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  22. I don't have or use a microwave either - is it possible to just food-process the cauliflower into "snow" and NOT cook it at all?

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  23. I just made this - delicious! I didn't measure the amount of cauliflower I ended up with, however, and it turned out great, however, I can only eat it with a fork and wouldn't have been able to pick it up by the slice like regular pizza. I'm wondering if the egg to cauliflower ratio wasn't precise enough... or if it's "meant" to be soft.

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  24. Thanks for this great share. This site is a fantastic resource. Keep up the great work here at Sprint Connection! Many thanks.Gluten free online store

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  25. I really like what you've done here! don't get me wrong--I'm a paleo practitioner that eats cheese on the REGGGGGG, but it's nice to have the option of a dairy free pizza crust!

    CupcakesOMG!

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  26. Wow, wenn sie so gut schmeckt, wie sie aussieht, dann würde ich sagen, dass es die perfekte Pizza ist.

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  29. I have never used nutritional yeast before. What brand of nutritional yeast should I get?

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    1. I picked mine up at Sprouts in the bulk bins. You can always leave it out, it won't affect the recipe too much.

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  30. Mine came out like crap... Are there supposed to be 3 cups of cauliflower raw or cooked? Because my cauliflower got way reduced after microwaving it.

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  31. I'm sorry it didn't turn out well! Around 3 cups after you pulse it into cauli snow and before you cook it.

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  32. I'm amazed that cauliflower can use to make pizza crust. It looks so delicious. I rather try this one. Thanks for sharing this.

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  33. I fed the raw cauliflower through my juicer. The pulp came out finely shredded and bone dry.

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  34. Would a flax egg work? I can't have eggs or cheese and I have not yet found a recipe that supports that (not that I feel entitled to have everything in the world according to my needs) :) Any feedback would be great! I've never made a 'flax egg' before either...

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    1. Yay, yay! I found one - just for anyone else who is looking specifically for egg-free: http://thefitchen.com/2013/04/25/crispy-cauliflower-crust-pizza-gluten-free-vegan-and-dairy-free/

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    2. Thanks for the info!

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  35. Just tried your recipe and loved it. I cut out carbs 2 weeks ago and started missing stuff like pizza, but your post saved the day! Thanks for keeping me on track!

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  36. This came out amazing! I want to practice more because my dough was a little wetter than I imagined, but it did not fall apart and the consistency was still great. I posted the recipe on my blog with the toppings I used!

    http://ammiam.com/eat/cauliflower-pizza-with-pesto-and-goat-cheese/

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  37. Was it pizza? Not really. Was it delicious? YES! I topped mine with pesto, grilled chicken, zuchinni and tomato. Thank you for a fantastic recipe!

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  38. my daughter doesnt use microwave ovens is there another way to cook the cauliflower

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  39. do you think this would as a base for an eggplant lasagna instead of noodles? Thanks!

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  40. I think this recipe works for those that need gluten free too doesn't it? I am just learning about this and it looks gluten free to me.

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  41. So I saw someone else post this as well but can you bake the crust then freeze it for another day?

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  42. Can the almond flour be omitted completed?

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  43. My daughter made this yesterday and it was amazing! I'm gluten, dairy free and I hadn't had any pizza since early Feb. Oh how I've missed pizza!! Two changes she said she was going to make: using 2 eggs (for better binding) and 1 T coconut flour instead of almond. She also eliminated the brewer's yeast. I thought it was fine just the way it was :)

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