A lot of my recipes these days often begin with, "It had been a long time since I ate..." Lately, much of my recipe creation has revolved around old favourites that I'm healthifying and making new again. For me, this is a creative challenge and after twelve years spent creating recipes, I have far more wins than losses so perhaps I'm also getting bolder in my experiments. Either way, it had been a long time since I had homemade gluten-free pizza.
You can find many gluten-free pizza crust recipe options online but too often without the gluten, they include egg or dairy, or both. I wanted a simple-to-make crust that was free of those common allergens, with a bonus of being vegan-friendly for those who follow that lifestyle. Now, perhaps my next challenge may be to make a paleo-friendly pizza crust without eggs or dairy but I fear it may end up being just a thin slice of cabbage with pizza toppings! (Jokes, jokes!)
The greatest challenge with all ready-made gluten-free pizza crusts, and even the ones you can get in restaurants (yay for that indulgent option!) is that they are largely a mix of a variety of starches and gums to lend the crust that typical light, gooey, stick together consistency we've come to know and love with thin crust pizza. Including things like tapioca or arrowroot starch in gluten-free baking is fairly standard. But optimally you have just one and it makes up a portion of the finished recipe.
Common Starches and Binders Found in Ready Made Gluten-Free Flour Blends
- Tapioca Starch
- Arrowroot starch
- Potato starch
- Potato flour
- Corn starch
- Guar gum
- Xantham gum
Psyllium Is My Secret Ingredient
To reduce the need for the crust to be a starch fest, and to avoid using any gums which can be irritating to the digestive tract, I use a little powdered psyllium. You may recognize this ingredient from a few of my baked goods, and the Banana Berry Oatmazing muffin from the UnDiet Cookbook. I love it in baking as it holds liquid, bulks and binds – a triple threat in the gluten-free baking world. And of course, psyllium is a great thing to have on hand for those days when you're feeling a little, ahem, back-logged.
Tip: Batch Prep The Flour
As this recipe doesn't have any rising time, it can be done quickly, which is nice. To make it even quicker and easier, batch prep the flour mix. Let's say you triple the below recipe so that you have the ability to quickly get a pizza into the oven, the ratio of mix to liquid is as follows.
- Combine 2, 3, or 4 times the called for dry ingredients (chickpea flour, brown rice flour, arrowroot flour, sea salt, coconut sugar.
- Store in an airtight container
- When ready to bake, use the following guide to get baking fast.
- 2 1/4 cups + 1 1/2 Tbsp dry pizza flour mix
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 1 cup of water
Yield: 2-4 servings
- 1⁄2 cup chickpea flour
- 3⁄4 cup brown rice flour
- 1 cup arrowroot flour/starch
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons ground psyllium husk
- 1 teaspoon ground sea salt
- 2 teaspoons ground coconut sugar (optional*)
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 1 cup warm water
- Preheat oven to 450° and if using a baking stone, place it inside the oven.
- In a large bowl, sift together flours, psyllium, and arrowroot starch. Add salt and sugar and mix well.
- Once flours are mixed, add in the olive oil and warm water and mix throughly with a spatula.
- If making two pizzas (which is recommended in a home oven and with standard cookie sheets), split dough into two balls.
- Sprinkle a sheet of parchment paper with flour, and plop one ball of dough on top. Sprinkle with more flour so it's not too sticky to touch. Add another sheet of parchment over top and roll out the dough to about ¼ inch thick.
- Do the same with the second ball of dough.
- If you've had a pizza stone in the oven, using a second cookie sheet, mindfully transfer pizza crust on parchment onto pizza stone. I like to trim the extra parchment off from my pizza to avoid burning paper at this high temperature. If using a regular baking sheet transfer to the oven. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or once the edges start to brown slightly.
- Remove your first crust from oven, slip the second one in. While the second one is baking, add your toppings and bake for another 8-10 minutes, or until toppings are ready.
- Repeat with second pizza.
Of course, pizza isn't pizza without the toppings. Though I wish I could tell you that I also make all my own tomato paste from scratch, I don't. I buy organic in glass containers. I'll take a small jar of tomato paste and mix in some olive oil and my choice of herbs and spices – usually keeping it simple with oregano and basil. I also love pizza with a pesto base instead of tomato sauce.
Pizza Friendly Pestos:
Please let me know when you try this pizza! You can tag me on Instagram @meghantelpner, or post a comment below and share what you topped your gluten-free pizza with.