Yes to Yummy

Personal Meat Pizzas (Gluten-Free and Paleo)

April 14, 2013 Leave your thoughts Print this page

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At my elementary and middle schools, the yearbook always did a class survey, and every year, pizza would consistently win in the “favorite foods” category. Whatever the reason, people just love pizza.

Most “Paleo” pizzas are made with almond flour and/or arrowroot powder crusts, but this one uses nothing but ground beef. It’s moist, satisfying, and much more flavorful than your traditional doughy base. Paired with lots of yummy toppings, this pizza makes an excellent dinner for adventurous and picky eaters alike.

A special thanks to Melissa Joulwan’s Well Fed for the recipe inspiration!

First, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line 3 9-inch cake pans with a circle of parchment paper and set aside.

For both the meat pizza and the tomato sauce, you’re going to need to make a spice blend. In a small bowl, combine 4 teaspoons of dried oregano, 4 teaspoons of dried basil, 2 teaspoons of dried parsley, 1 teaspoon of salt, 2 teaspoons of garlic powder, 1 teaspoon of onion powder, and 1 teaspoon of paprika. 

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To make the meat crust, combine 1 1/2 tablespoons of the spice blend with 1 1/2 pounds of ground beef. (I use 1 tablespoon of seasoning per pound of meat.) Mix with your hands until well combined.

I highly recommend experimenting with different kinds of ground meat in this recipe. Try ground lamb, pork, or even turkey for completely new flavors! You can also add in some ground bacon for a savory, salty delight.

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Divide the meat among each of the three pans. I used my kitchen scale to be precise, but if you don’t have a scale, don’t bother. Just make sure each pan has about the same amount of meat in it.

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With your hands, gently flatten the ground beef into a circular shape. Use your fingers to spread it out so it just reaches the edge of the pan. It takes a little while, so don’t get discouraged! Repeat this with all of the pans of meat.

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Bake the meat crusts in the oven until just turning dark brown, about 15 minutes. Let cool in the pan for at least 15 minutes before placing on a tinfoil-lined baking sheet. Do not turn off the oven.

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While the crust cools, make the tomato sauce and broccoli pesto to go on top. You can make both of these, one of these, or neither, although I don’t recommend eating it plain.

To make the tomato sauce, heat 1/2 tablespoon of refined coconut oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add 2 finely diced cloves of garlic and saute for 30 seconds, then add a generous pinch of the spice blend.

Scoop in 1 6 ounce can of tomato paste and pour in 1/3 cup of water. Stir with a spoon until the tomato paste is mostly dissolved in the water, then add 1 14 ounce can of chopped tomatoes. Reduce heat to low and let simmer for at least 20 minutes. When you’re ready to use the tomato sauce, blend it with an immersion blender or in a food processor until smooth, about 1 to 2 minutes.image

To make the broccoli pesto, rig a large pot with a steamer and fill with water. Add the broccoli and sprinkle well with salt. Bring to a boil and steam until dark green and very soft, about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a food processor, chop a handful of hazelnuts and a handful of macadamia nuts. I have pretty small hands, so a handful for me is a little under 1/4 of a cup.

When the broccoli is ready, add it to the food processor along with 1/4 cup of olive oil, 2 teaspoons of onion powder, 2 teaspoons of paprika, a good pinch of salt, and a crack of black pepper. Process until smooth, about 3 minutes.

This pesto is pretty neutral tasting, so if you want to spice it up a bit, add 1 to 2 cloves of garlic and/or a squeeze of fresh lemon juice. 

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Now, it’s time to embellish the meat pizzas! I topped half of mine with the tomato sauce and the other half with pesto, then added sauteed mushrooms and onions and some leftover pistachio crust from the Orange Pistachio Scallops.

The options are truly limitless for what you want to add on top of these. You can try fresh tomatoes, sun-dried tomatoes, bell peppers, pineapple, bacon, prosciutto, carrots, olives, pepperoni, different kinds of crushed nuts, eggplant, fresh herbs, shredded coconut…you get the idea. If you eat dairy, you can also add some cheese—for my parents’ meat pizzas, I sliced up some fresh burrata.

Slide the meat pizzas back into the oven for about 7 minutes, or until they’re at your desired temperature. If you want a crisp top, broil on low for 2 to 3 minutes.

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Is it exactly like pizza? No, but it’s pretty darn tasty.

What take-out food should I try and make Paleo? Leave me a comment on Facebook and let me know!


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