This cauliflower pizza crust is crispy, crunchy, and thin without an ounce of flour. This crust is one of the more cumbersome crusts you'll make, but if you have the time, and enjoy being in the kitchen, if you're gluten-free or interested in experimenting, definitely worth it. It's topped with a fresh kale and basil pesto, plus tomatoes and sun-dried tomatoes, but it would also be amazing with a sprinkle of vegan cheese or nutritional yeast. It doesn’t get much better than that!

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Cauliflower Crust Pesto Pizza [Vegan, Gluten-Free]

Ingredients

  • 1 head of cauliflower
  • 1 tablespoon ground chia seeds, plus 3 tablespoons water left to rest for 10 minutes
  • 2 teaspoons dried parsley
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups loosely packed kale
  • 1/4 cup loosely packed basil
  • 1/4 cup walnuts
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Half a tomato, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes
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Preparation

  1. Fill a medium saucepan with water and bring to a simmer.
  2. Remove the stem from a head of cauliflower and break off the florets.
  3. Place the cauliflower florets in a blender or food processor and pulse until the cauliflower is riced (small little bits—about the size of a grain of rice).
  4. Transfer the riced cauliflower to the pot of simmering water and simmer for about two minutes.
  5. While the cauliflower is simmering, line a fine mesh colander with cheesecloth (or a nut-milk bag).
  6. Pour the cauliflower into the colander and drain.  Rinse with cool water until cool enough to handle.
  7. Once the cauliflower is cool enough to handle, twist the top of the cheesecloth and strain water out by squeezing.  This step will take a while and a good amount of muscle — there will be a lot of water and will require a lot of squeezing. You don’t want to skimp here or you won’t get the ideal crisp in your crust.
  8. Once you can't squeeze any more water out of the cauliflower, transfer cauliflower from cheesecloth to a mixing bowl. Add chia seed mixture, salt, pepper, parsley, basil and oregano to the cauliflower and fold together until combined.
  9. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and transfer cauliflower to the sheet. Using your hands, flatten and shape your crust. Bake for about 12-15 minutes until edges of the crust begin to lightly brown.
  10. Meanwhile, line another baking sheet with parchment paper.
  11. Remove crust from the oven.  Place the new parchment lined baking sheet upside down on top of the other one, and using oven mitts, flip over so that the bottom side of the crust is now face-up.  Return to oven and bake for another 12-15 minutes until the edges of the crust are golden-brown and crispy.
  12. While the crust continues to bake, prepare pesto by combing kale, basil, walnuts, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper in a blender or food processor until blended.
  13. When ready, remove the crust from the oven and top with pesto, sliced tomatoes, and sun-dried tomatoes. Return to the oven and cook for another 5-7 minutes until the toppings have browned.
  14. Remove pizza from oven and top with fresh basil, if desired. Slice and serve.

Notes

Makes one pizza.