Gluten-Free Pizza Crust

It’s very difficult to find a gluten-free pizza crust recipe that doesn’t include at least one egg. This one is yeasted so if you have trouble with getting yeast to work, not an uncommon problem, just make sure your yeast is: 1) still viable – there should be a date on the package; 2) that your water isn’t too hot or too cold – like with a baby’s bottle, the water should be just slightly warmer than a neutral feel on your inside wrist or about 105 degrees; 3) never put the salt in with the yeast, always add it to the flour; and 4) yeast needs food to grow so add the sweetener to the yeast to help it develop.

Those types in place, here’s the recipe. Takes awhile because of letting the yeast do it’s thing but it’s a very easy recipe to make.

First, in a 8-10 cup bowl combine:

1 1/2 cups gluten-free flour (I used the 1to1 but any will work fine)

1 tablespoon date sugar

1 teaspoon guar gum (or xanthan gum)

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

Mix to combine. In a 2-3 cup bowl mix together:

1 1/2 teaspoons yeast (this is one packet)

1 cup warm water (see above)

1 teaspoon date sugar

1/2 cup of the flour mixture above

Use a whisk to combine until there are no lumps or very small lumps left. Set aside and let the yeast work for 15-30 minutes, it should double in size. If it doesn’t start bubbling within the first few minutes, either the yeast isn’t any good or the water was too cold or too hot. Start again in this case.

After the yeast has doubled in size add:

1 tablespoon olive oil

Then pour the wet yeast mixture into the flour mixture and stir (wooden spoon best) until all the flour is absorbed. Try not to mix too much once the mixture is combined and smooth or the dough may become tough. Form the dough into a ball, or as close to a ball as possible – if the mixture is too wet and sticky, wet or oil a spatula to form into a ball. Cover with a clean kitchen towel or plastic wrap and let sit for about 1 hour or until the ball is about double in size.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Grease a 10-12″ pizza pan (or a rectangular baking sheet) with:

2 tablespoons olive oil

Depending on the size and shape of the pizza desired, either scrape the entire ball of dough into the pan or cut into sections to make smaller pizzas. Personally, since I live alone, I quarter the dough and shape it into 4 personal size pizzas on a large baking sheet. Spread it on the pizza pan or shape it using wet or greased hands. I spread the olive oil on the baking pan with my hand and then have a greased hand to spread the dough out and shape it as I like.

Bake the dough for 10-12 minutes or until it just starts to brown. Remove from oven and either cover with toppings and bake for an additional 20-25 minutes at 425 degrees (baking time depends a lot on the thickness of the crust), or cool and freeze the prepared pizza crusts for later use. I made 4 small personal sized pizza but I added the toppings to all of them, baked them and then froze the extra 3 fully made to heat up at a later date.

TIP: Gluten-free baked goods take longer to bake than “normal” baked goods so don’t be afraid to let the pizza dough cook for longer if it isn’t browned on the bottom. My crusts were quite thin so the 20 minutes was sufficient.

Plantain Crust Pizza (dairy-free, gluten-free, egg-free, vegan depending on what toppings you use)

If you like pizza but have been hesitating about eating it because of the crust, here’s an alternative if you like plantains.  The greener the plantains, the weaker the plantain taste and the crunchier the crust will be when baked.   And put whatever toppings on it you like, just as you would with any pizza.  I chose turkey Italian sausage, onions, mushrooms, and the dairy-free cheese I like.

First, you need to peel your green plantains.  Here’s how to do it:

  • Make sure the plantains are warm; don’t try to peel them if you’ve had them in the refrigerator.
  • Cut off the ends
  • Slit along a ridge the length of the plantain, being careful to only cut the peel
  • Make a cut around the plantain in the middle or cut it in half for ease of peeling
  • Slide the knife edge under the edge of the peel to loosen
  • Remove peel side to side rather than lengthwise, it will come off in sections and you may need to cut the edge of each ridge to loose it

What you’ll need:

  • 3 large green plantains*
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 3/4 teaspoons of sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

*If your plantains are more than 8 inches long, you may need to increase the water and oil slightly.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  In food processor, add plantains cut into pieces, water, olive oil and garlic.  Blend until smooth and then add the sea salt and baking soda.  Blend until combined.  On a parchment paper lined baking sheet, pour out the plantain mixture and spread evenly into a circle leaving a slight ridge along the outside to stop toppings from escaping.  Reduce oven temperature to 400 degree and bake 30-35 minutes until thoroughly cooked and golden brown.  Remove the pizza crust.  It will feel soft.

Put the oven temperature back to 450 degrees (this is so the bottom side of the crust will get crispy).  Add the pizza sauce and toppings.  Return to the oven for another 15-20 minutes until toppings are hot and the cheese has melted.