Yes to Yummy

Vegan Pesto Pizza

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Oh yes I did. I made completely vegan and gluten-free pizza. And it actually tastes like real pizza. Real cheesy, doughy, crispy pizza that you’d get at a pizza shop. I don’t tell lies, people. This pizza is AMAZING. Probably the best pizza I’ve ever made at home, regardless of gluten and dairy content.  Adapted from Zenbelly!

Ingredients

Prep Time
Cooking Time
Total Time
Yield 4-6 servings (2 medium pies)

2 tablespoons of yeast

1/2 cup of warm (but not hot) water

2 tablespoons of maple syrup (or your preferred liquid sweetener)

1 1/2 cups + 1 tablespoon of blanched almond flour

1 1/2 cups of tapioca powder

1 1/2 teaspoons of salt

2 tablespoons of olive oil (or melted coconut oil), plus more to finish

3/4 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar

VEGAN MOZZARELLA CHEESE

TRADITIONAL PESTO

Basil and oregano, to garnish

Directions

In a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the yeast with the warm water and maple syrup. Whisk just to combine, then let everything sit and hang out for 10 minutes. If the yeast doesn’t get all bubbly, toss it out and start over again.

Meanwhile, stir together the blanched almond flour, tapioca powder, and salt, breaking up big clumps of almond flour with your hands.

Pour the dry ingredients into the mixing bowl or the bowl of the stand mixer and also add the olive oil and apple cider vinegar. Mix at low speed for 2 minutes until everything is just combined, scraping the bowl down once halfway through.

Cover with a warm or slightly-damp kitchen towel and let rise for 2 hours.

Preheat your oven to 500 degrees and put a pizza stone in there, if you have one.

Doing the best you can, divide the ball of risen dough in the bowl into two pieces. Take one piece and put it on a large sheet of parchment paper. Using damp hands–water will prevent the dough from sticking to you–spread the dough into about a ten inch ball. If a hole appears, use a little water to smush it back together again.

Put the dough circle on the pizza stone WITH the parchment paper and bake until just beginning to turn color, about 4 to 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, take out another piece of parchment paper and shape the second half of dough. When the first crust comes out, put the second one in.

Now, spread half of the pesto on the first crust. Using a small spoon or ice cream scooper, make the “cheese” into balls and drop them all around the pizza to your liking.

Bake at 500 for another two minutes, then take the pizza out of the oven and turn it on broil. Slide the pizza off of the parchment paper and put it on a heavy cookie sheet. (Parchment will burn in the oven, as I learned the hard way.) Brush the top of the slightly-set “cheese” with a little olive oil, and broil until the cheese begins to turn golden brown, about three minutes. (It should bubble, too!) It’s OK if the crust gets a little burnt–it tastes better that way!

Repeat the same with the other crust and remaining pesto and cheese. Sprinkle with fresh basil and oregano before serving.


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