When I was in the heat of my competitive weight loss program, I experimented a lot with cauliflower in place of flour. Basically, you throw a ton of cauliflower into a food processor, then ring it out dry and use it as the base of a few recipes. I tried a few, and they all sucked until I made pizza crust out of cauliflower. I’ve never shared a recipe on our blog before, but what the hell – let’s talk about mature topics like cooking and recipes these days since I’m getting older in life and this is what adults talk about.
Here’s how to make the crust, and then I’ll give two suggestions on what to put on top.
Ingredients: What you’ll need to make the cauliflower crust:
- A head of cauliflower
- An egg
- A bag of mozzarella cheese
- A handful of parmesan cheese
- Salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, fennel seeds, garlic powder
Directions: How to make the cauliflower pizza crust:
- Process the head of cauliflower or grate it (that just takes forever). I’d tell you how much, but it depends on how big your head of cauliflower was and how big you want your pizza to be. I’d aim for around 2.5 to 3 cups of it after it’s all processed.
- Drain water from your cauliflower. I used a ton of paper towels to dab at it, but there are probably better methods for getting rid of water.
- Nuke the proceeded cauliflower for 8 minutes.
- Mix in the egg, 1.5-2 cups of mozzarella (or however much you feel is right; measuring isn’t my strong suit) and a handful of Parmesan cheese.
- Be a generous sprinkler of the seasonings, as the cauliflower has literally no taste to speak of until you season it.
- Spray your cooking device as needed with cooking spray.
- Plop your dough down on a pizza stone (or ratchet chefs like me, a cookie sheet) and flatten it out. The key here is to make it pretty flat so it gets crispy. I didn’t do that the first pizza I made, and the crust had more of a mashed potato consistency than a pizza crust consistency. It wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t good either.
- Cook for 10-15 minutes at 425 degrees, but really keep your eye on it as it browns and that’s when it’s done.
Once your crust is done, you can do whatever you’d like on the top of it, but I’ve got my suggestions: either the Everything Pizza or the Kale and Sweet Potato Pizza.
Everything Pizza Topping
As the name suggests, I put everything I could find on this pizza, which probably negated some of the positive health benefits of substituting cauliflower for the crust:
- Layer of pizza sauce
- Layer of mozzarella and parmesan cheese
- Orange and red bell peppers
- Buffalo Sauce
- Basil leaves
Sweet Potato and Kale Pizza Topping
This one was in the height of my healthy eating, but actually really stunning. The huge downside for this choice, though, is you have to pre-bake the slices of sweet potatoes before adding them to the pizza. When I was processing cauliflower AND cooking potatoes, it felt like a lot for my meager cooking skills to handle.
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil swirled on the base
- Mozzarella and Parmesan cheese
- Sweet potato circles (the prep on these is just to bake them for 20 minutes at 400 degrees before putting them on the top of the pizza. I also sprinkled them with olive oil and cinnamon before cooking them.)
- Red onions (cook these suckers with the sweet potatoes)
- Balsamic vinegar
Once you’ve got your toppings in place, cook it for another 10-ish minutes and you’re good to go! I really like cauliflower pizza, but the prep time is what keeps me from making it often. Maybe if my mom didn’t give me a food processor the size of a quarter, it wouldn’t be so tedious.
Kidding – I would definitely splurge and get a bigger processor if I actually thought I would be in the cooking mood more than once every three months.
Let me know if you make cauliflower pizza! I’d love to hear how it turns out for you.