Starting off the week with a new-to-us recipe, mini cauliflower crust pizzas. After seeing Nick eat a pizza, Reese decided she now likes pizza. Yay? Though I suppose what toddler doesn't. Though, if we are going to eat pizza, I definitely forgo the frozen variety with scary ingredients, and go for homemade. And seeing as how getting Reese to eat new vegetables is becoming more and more of a challenge as she becomes more toddler-y, I figured a cauliflower crust could hide some extra veggies. And also grain-free for the win!
When prepping to make the crusts, it definitely helps to use a food processor (or in my case my little Ninja Express Chop) to get the right "rice" consistency for the cauliflower. But be careful not to over process or you'll end up with purée! The next step is to steam the cauliflower for a few short minutes, either over the stove or in the microwave. After that, you need to get all the water out of the cauliflower by wringing it out in a clean dishtowel. Really use some muscle and get as much water drained as you can so the crust stays together. We're talking like at least 1/3 cup of water drained out! So twist over a measuring cup so you can see your progress!
Then the cauliflower "rice" is ready for the dough. Combine with the mozzarella, parmesan, dried basil and oregano, some minced garlic, almond flour and one egg and mix it up till it forms a ball. Then you can form your mini pizza crusts and they are ready for the oven. One thing I would do in the future is use parchment paper on the baking sheet, definitely would make things easier!
Once they are a golden brown, take them out and go crazy with your toppings:
We used some regular organic pasta sauce, some Applegate Farms natural pepperoni on a few, and arugula and mozzarella on the others.
It takes a little prep time to make the cauliflower "dough" but after that, the bake time is minimal and topping the pizzas is the fun part! I also think this would be fun for bigger kids to get creative and top their own mini pizzas. You could also prep the crusts ahead of time, like on Sunday, and then just add toppings and pop them in the oven for a quick meal during the week.
Mini Cauliflower Crust Pizzas
Adapted from: the Lucky Penny Blog
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Bake Time: 12 minutes plus another 8 minutes
Yield: About 8-10 mini-sized pizzas
- 1 small head of organic cauliflower (don't get a huge one!)
- 1/4 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
- 3 tablespoons almond flour
- 1 tablespoon coconut flour
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese
- And all your toppings: sauce, cheese, veggies, olives, meats, spinach or arugula
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Prep a baking sheet with greased parchment paper on top - use lots of olive oil!
- Rinse the cauliflower and pat dry. Using big knife, cut the stem off and cut off the florets. It doesn't need to be perfect, just small enough to fit in your food processor.
- Pulse the florets into cauliflower "rice". If your food processor is mini like mine, you can do this in multiple batches. Just dump all the cauliflower rice into a big ceramic mixing bowl as you go.
- Pop the bowl in the microwave for 3 minutes. Or alternately, you could steam using a veggie steamer on the stove for a few minutes.
- Dump all the cauliflower rice onto a clean dishtowel. Once it has cooled a bit, wrap it up like a burrito, and start twisting the towel to drain the excess water. You should get upwards of 1/3 cup of water out. Keep twisting!
- Then dump the rice out of the towel and back into the mixing bowl. Add the: basil, oregano, salt, minced garlic, almond flour, coconut flour, egg, mozz and parm cheese. Use a rubber spatula to mix it all together until the egg is well blended and the dough forms a ball.
- Using your hands, scoop small handfuls (I used palm-sized scoops) to form a mini-sized crusts. Press down so the crusts are even and about 1/2 inch thick.
- Bake crusts (without toppings!) for 12 minutes. You might need to add a minute or two depending on the size of your crusts. Just look for golden brown on top.
- Take out of the oven and top your pizzas!
- Place back in the oven for another 8 minutes or so, until the cheese is golden on top.