You’ve seen the recipes I post. I love carbs. I love homemade pizza dough – loaded with white flour. Yes, I know it doesn’t have any nutritional value – but oh does it make a good crust! I am on day three of a 21 Day Sugar Detox. I’m following the book written by Diane Sanfilippo. The goal is to take control and lower cravings for sugar and carbs. The plan makes sense and it’s all fine and dandy written in a book, but this is real life people! I like to eat! I like to eat carbs! So this is quite a challenge for me for sure! I didn’t want to shout it from the rooftops until I complete the detox, but I need all the help and tasty recipes I can get (only allowed foods in the 21 Day Sugar Detox Plan, of course). So when I saw my sister-in-law post a picture of a tasty looking cauliflower crust pizza, I had to give it a try.
In the past, I’ve tried to puree rutabaga as a “mashed potato,” made some cauliflower puree casserole concoction I saw on Pinterest with pepperoni and more cheese on top and threw most of it out. Those pictures can be so deceiving! So I was a little cautious about how this one would turn out, but I trust my sister-in-law and know that she would not endorse this one if it wasn’t a “keeper” so I gave it a try. No, it’s not the same as my homemade pizza dough. I’m not going to lie – it’s nowhere near the same. If I were having my last meal and could only choose between my regular homemade pizza and this Cauliflower Crust pizza – I would hands down choose my old carb filled pizza, but this pizza crust gives those who are on a low carb or low sugar diet plan a little taste of pizza to satisfy that craving. I know I’m not alone on this challenge of low carb, low sugar and I just can’t eat and tell you to eat fake diet tasting food. This pizza is pretty darn good for having so few carbs! My taste buds may miss them for a few minutes, but my belly sure won’t!
There are a few important things when making this pizza crust. 1. Getting as much moisture out of the cauliflower as possible! 2. Baking the heck out of it in a hot oven to get it to a nice golden brown not once, but twice! The texture is good if prepared the right way and my sister-in-law has had many trials making this type of pizza so she knows her stuff. I’m sure the more you eat it, the less you crave that old standby pizza crust. Remember I’m only on day three so hang in there with me! I’m going through a little withdrawal this week so I’m just trying to get through meal by meal! I have a friend who is going through the 21 DSD and is a few days ahead of me. It’s funny because after I made the pizza and liked it, I sent her a picture of it. She had made a version for supper too! You have to somehow be able to enjoy the food you are eating while on some sort of diet plan. We are both determined to work with our allowed foods and make it work! Don’t worry, I’ll still make and blog about all different kinds of stuff – healthy and not-so-healthy, low carb, full of carbs. I just won’t be enjoying it all for a few weeks. My taste testers will gladly step up to the plate. I have posts waiting to be written that I’ve made in the last few months and are floating around in my head, and probably around my belly too so everything will be covered. I’ll update you once I’ve completed this little challenge!
Cauliflower Crust Pizza
2 C raw cauliflower
1 1/2 C finely shredded colby jack cheese (I didn’t have enough Colby Jack so I used a little of the Italian blend cheese too)
2 TBS Grated Parmesan Cheese
1 large egg
1 TBS Italian Seasoning
Whatever toppings you like. Mine were diced tomato, roma tomato slices, sliced bella mushrooms, chopped salami, balsamic vinegar, some Italian Seasoning, and of course cheese. I used the Italian blend and grated parmesan.
Preheat oven to 425 Degrees F.
Grate the cauliflower with a box grater or in a food processor. I just threw mine in the food processor. Process or grate until very fine. The finer, the better.
Transfer the grated cauliflower to a microwave safe bowl and microwave uncovered for 5 minutes.
Note- if your kids at like mine this is just about the time they come into the kitchen with wrinkled up noses asking “What’s that smell?” So it may be a good idea to cook this up while they are outside if you are trying to pull a quick switcharoo on them with this pizza replacing their traditional pizza. I made my girls their own traditional pizza (yes it was a frozen pizza), so this one was all for me and I didn’t mind if they saw and smelled the cauliflower behind the curtain.
Transfer the microwaved cauliflower to a sheet pan and flatten it out with a spatula until thin.
Using paper towels, press down on the cauliflower to absorb as much liquid as you can.
This is very important in achieving a crisp crust. Keep pressing and blotting as much as you can, repeating with fresh paper towel. I went through 4 or 5 paper towels.
Transfer the cauliflower back to the bowl, add in all the cheese. Add in the egg and Italian seasoning. Stir well to combine.
Line a pan with parchment paper and spread the mixture onto the parchment paper. Flatten again with a spatula until evenly thin.
Bake crust for around 10-15 minutes until golden brown. Just watch it closely and keep checking to make sure you don’t burn it.
In the meantime, gather up your toppings.
Once crust is golden brown, remove from oven and add on your toppings. Keep them pretty thin and light since the crust can’t handle much weight.
Bake pizza again for another 7-10 minutes or so until the toppings are all melted and pizza is golden.
The crust is nice and has a little crispness to it. You may need to eat it with a fork if your toppings are too heavy since it’s not as sturdy as traditional pizza crust.
Note- Two of my girls tried the pizza and said it was not too shabby. They were surprised how good it tasted.
A Big Thank You to my sister-in-law for this “Keeper”!!
*** update*** I’m eating leftover pizza today for lunch and it’s not as crisp, need to eat with a fork but it’s still pretty good. Like regular homemade pizza, I recommend reheating any leftovers in the oven instead of microwave.