Clean Green Cauliflower Crust Pizza (vegan + gluten-free)

By June 12, 2017Mains, Recipes
cauliflower crust pizza featured

Where are my pizza fans at? Today, we’re giving this comfort classic a healthy makeover with a big twist. I may be late to the party on this one, but this clean green cauliflower crust pizza is just too good not to share. Get the recipe for this delicious pizza below!

Delicious, healthy and easy Clean Green Cauliflower Pizza (vegan and gluten-free!).

I think there’s a misconception out there that when we give comfort foods a healthy twist, they are going to taste exactly like the “real” thing. That’s just not true my friends.

Coconut bacon DOES NOT taste like bacon, and mac n’ cheese made out of butternut squash and nutritional yeast certainly doesn’t taste like the ooey gooey cheesy pasta we drool over at the buffet line.

Sorry to break it to ya, but most “healthy makeover” foods aren’t an equal substitution for the real thing. But they are just as good, if not better, if we could just get past this unrealistic expectation.

Super easy and delicious Clean Green Cauliflower Crust Pizza recipe!

Oh, wait. There is one exception. Vegan ice cream made out of cashews and coconut milk actually does taste like the real thing… so, so good. But that’s for another day.

See what I did here? I’m setting you up to get you excited about the best, healthy pizza out there (without actually thinking it’s going to taste like Papa John’s). Smart, I know.

Even though this pizza doesn’t really taste like the kind you may be used to, I’d be willing to bet that it tastes even better. This pizza is loaded with veggies and will leave you feeling satisfied and energized, not greasy and bloated.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I do enjoy my slice of cheesy pizza every now and then, but a girl can’t have that on the regular, so this is a fantastic alternative when you’re looking to make pizza at home, the healthier way.

Delicious, healthy and easy Clean Green Cauliflower Pizza (vegan and gluten-free!).

So what’s the secret to this clean green cauliflower pizza?

Well, a few things actually. I tested this recipe out on two different cooking classes and had people giving me a run for my money in both of them, claiming they have tried cauliflower crust before and it crumbled in their hand.

The key elements to a crust that you can pick up is super dry riced cauliflower (which is why I buy the fresh, pre-riced kind), a crust that’s not too thin, but not too thick and wait for it… you have to flip the crust halfway to ensure that both sides get crispy!

Delicious, healthy and easy Clean Green Cauliflower Pizza (vegan and gluten-free!).

I also tested this recipe with a few different flavors and I think I’ve found the best combo. Tomato-based sauce tasted too bland and made the crust a little soggy. I tried different toppings, but there’s something about the combo of the fresh pesto with the mushrooms, asparagus and red onion that makes this pizza a winner!

Of course, you can make this pizza your own by playing around with any flavor combinations you like. Although this recipe might look complicated, I promise you, looks are deceiving and this pizza can be made in no time at all! What takes the longest is waiting for that crust to get nice and crispy, and trust me on this, it’s worth it.

Yields 4

Clean Green Cauliflower Crust Pizza (vegan + gluten-free)

10 minPrep Time

50 minCook Time

1 hrTotal Time

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Ingredients

  • For the cauliflower crust:
  • 1/4 cup chia seeds
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 3 cups riced cauliflower (I find freshly prepared, already riced works best as it's the driest)
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 1/3 cup nutritional yeast (optional), plus more for topping
  • 1 Tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Toppings: asparagus, mushrooms, sliced red onion, chopped fresh basil
  • For the clean green pesto:
  • 1 cup tightly packed basil leaves
  • 1 cup torn kale leaves
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 1-2 garlic cloves 1/2 lemon, juiced pinch of salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. To make the crust, combine the chia seeds and water in a small bowl and let sit for at least 20 minutes.
  3. Place the riced cauliflower in a large mixing bowl. Add the almond meal, nutritional yeast if using, dried oregano, garlic powder and salt; mix to combine. Make a well in the center of the cauliflower mixture and add the soaked chia seeds. Using your hands, combine the ingredients and shape into a rough ball.
  4. Place the mixture on a parchment-lined baking sheet and form into an even, flat crust (this is easiest when hands are wet). Make sure that the sides of the crust are the same thickness as the middle. We are aiming for the crust to be about 1/2” thick.
  5. Bake the crust for 25 minutes in the oven, or until golden brown around the edges. For a firmer crust, carefully flip the crust onto the back of another baking sheet that has been lined with parchment paper and gently remove the parchment paper from the top of the crust. Next, carefully lift or slide the crust back onto the same tray and put back in the oven. Bake for another 25 minutes.
  6. While the crust is baking, make the pesto by combining all of the ingredients in a food processor and blending on HIGH until the walnuts are ground and leaves are minced.
  7. To assemble the pizza, dry sauté the sliced red onion for a minute, then add the chopped asparagus and sliced mushrooms. Sauté for another 2-3 minutes or until soft.
  8. Spread a thin layer of the pesto on the cauliflower crust, leaving a 1” border around the edges. Sprinkle with extra nutritional yeast, if using. Top with the sautéed vegetables and put back into the oven for about 10 minutes.
  9. Once done, remove from the oven and top with chopped basil leaves. Let cool for a few minutes before serving.
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http://fitlivingeats.com/clean-green-cauliflower-crust-pizza/

If you have leftover pesto, you could add it to your avocado toast, use as a sandwich spread or use as a dip with some bell pepper slices. Yum!

And don’t forget, if you make this Clean Green Cauliflower Pizza (or any other recipes), let me know! Leave a comment below or snap a pic on Instagram and tag it with @fitlivingeats and #fitlivingeats. I love seeing and sharing your recipe creations!

Want to try this recipe? Don’t forget to pin for later!

Delicious, healthy and easy Clean Green Cauliflower Pizza (vegan and gluten-free!).