I was planning to share a quinoa, kale and tofu skillet recipe this morning, however plans changed after I had one bite of the pizza I made last night for dinner.
Don’t get me wrong, the kale and tofu dish is great (I’ll still post the recipe sometime this week). However, this pizza isn’t your average pie and judging from the response I got when I posted an Instragram photo on Facebook last night, the recipe needed to be shared right away. The thing that makes this pizza so unique is that the crust is made out of cauliflower – yes, the vegetable!
I honestly can’t remember when or where I first saw the idea for pizza made with a cauliflower crust (probably Pinterest), but I know that it has been done many times before. I used this blog post from DAMY Health as a guide and came up with a variation of the recipe. I was a little skeptical about using cauliflower to make a pizza crust, but trust me when I say that it’s pretty amazing. You can taste the cauliflower flavor (which I like) but it still tastes just like pizza – cheesy and delicious. The edges of the crust even get a little crunchy like regular pizza does.
So yes, pizza CAN BE healthy! If you cut this crust into 8 slices, each piece of crust (without toppings) has only 50 calories, 2 carbs and 5 grams of protein! There’s no need to feel guilty about eating a few slices, several times a week.
- ½ head cauliflower (about 2 cups riced)
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 cup part-skim shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1 teaspoon basil
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- Pre-heat oven to 400° F.
- Prep a cookie sheet or pizza stone. You can grease the cookie sheet or use greased aluminum foil. It will stick if you don’t grease it properly. (I used a Pampered Chef baking stone, which doesn’t require any prep if it’s well seasoned.)
- Remove the stems and leaves from your cauliflower and chop the florets into chunks. Add to a food processor (I used my Vitamix) and pulse just until the texture is similar to rice. If you don’t have a food processor or Vitamix, you can grate the cauliflower with a cheese grater or chop it.
- Sauté cauliflower “rice” in a non-stick skillet over medium heat and cook until translucent, approximately 6-8 minutes. (You can use the microwave for this as well. Just place cauliflower in an uncovered microwave-safe bowl and cook for 8 minutes.)
- In a bowl combine the cooked cauliflower with all remaining ingredients.
- Spread dough out evenly over foil (or stone) – about ¼ to ⅓ of an inch thick. The pizza should be about 9-10 inches in diameter.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the crust is golden, crispy on the edges and cooked through the middle.
- Remove the crust from the oven.
- Top with pizza sauce and toppings. Be careful not to add too many heavy toppings as you don’t want to weigh down the crust.
- Broil the pizza for 5 minutes, or until the toppings are hot and the cheese is melted. Allow the pizza to cool for 2-3 minutes then cut and serve immediately.
You can top the pizza with whatever you like, just make sure the toppings are already cooked since you’ll only be broiling the pizza for a few minutes. I spread on a layer of my basil lima bean hummus, my favorite homemade pizza sauce (recipe from Ashley of the Edible Perspective), roasted squash and zucchini, roasted eggplant and a sprinkle of the shredded mozzarella, about 2 Tablespoons. The crust already has cheese so you don’t need much on top. Also keep in mind that the cauliflower crust isn’t quite as hearty as most regular dough-based crusts so you don’t want to weigh it down with a ton of ingredients. Keep is simple.
I found that it’s easier to eat this pizza with a fork/knife. Once you get to only a few bites left, it’s fine to pick up with your hands, but it tends to collapse if you try to pick up the whole slice early on.
Overall I LOVED this pizza and will definitely be making it again sometime soon – perhaps I’ll even try a vegan version next time. I hope you all enjoy it as much as I do!
I hope you have a wonderful start to your week! I’m pumped because we’re headed to Boston this weekend for a wedding and have all day Friday to hang out in the city. If you have any recommendations of things we should do and see while there – restaurants, breweries, history stuff, etc. I’d love for you to leave them in the comment section.
Last but not least, the office arm challenge exercises for week 6 are up so if you’re following along, definitely check those out.