Vegan Cauliflower Pizza Crust Recipe (Gluten-Free)

If you’re looking for a low-carb pizza option then this Vegan Cauliflower Pizza Crust recipe is worth the rave. It’s also gluten-free. This pizza is topped with classic Margherita pizza toppings, a homemade pizza sauce and slices just like your typical pizza.

Vegan Cauliflower Pizza Crust Recipe

What is Cauliflower Pizza Crust?

Cauliflower Pizza Crust is made primarily with cauliflower and it’s a great alternative to flour-based pizza crust. You would typically find cauliflower pizza crust made with eggs to help bind the dough and topped with dairy cheeses. But this recipe is all vegan! Yes, that’s right. No meat, no dairy and no eggs.

It is also gluten-free for those of you who are gluten intolerant or just choose to lessen your gluten intake.

If you’ve made your own cauliflower pizza crust before but struggled to keep it from falling apart, then this recipe is the answer to your struggle. This cauliflower crust is sliceable like a regular pizza crust with a nice chewy texture to match.

The next thing that makes this recipe so special is that it is topped with a homemade pizza sauce that comes together in under 30 minutes.

I then top it with Margherita pizza toppings like freshly sliced tomatoes, vegan mozzarella cheese and fresh basil.

How to Make the Best Cauliflower Pizza Crust

Vegan Cauliflower Pizza Crust Gluten Free Recipe

It’s no doubt that pizza is enjoyed by pretty much everyone. I mean, it has all of the ingredients that scream comfort – gluten, cheese and meat if you choose – and is handheld for easy on-the-go eating. Although this Cauliflower Pizza Crust is vegan and gluten-free, it still rivals your favorite non-vegan version.

The best pizza in my opinion is one that has the perfect ratio of crust to sauce to toppings. This pizza recipe yields a thin, crispy crust that is slightly chewy and delicately seasoned.

The crust holds together beautifully at the end so you can pick it up and enjoy it as you would a normal slice of pizza.

The homemade pizza sauce is divine and really mimics that at your local pizza shop. The best part about the sauce is that it comes together in no time with simple ingredients.

Pizza Sauce
Pizza Sauce

Once you have pulsed your cauliflower into fine pieces, boil it for 5 minutes then squeeze as much water out as possible. Do not skip this step at all since this plays a crucial role in getting a crust that holds together in the end.

Cauliflower Rice
Cauliflower Rice

Combine the gluten-free flour, seasonings and flax egg (binder) and use your hands to create a the dough. I recommend a squeezing motion as opposed to the typical folding motion when creating the dough. Keep in mind, the dough will be sticky to the touch so don’t worry about adding anymore flour.

Rolled Out Cauliflower Pizza Crust
Rolled Out Cauliflower Pizza Crust

Once the dough comes together, spread it out evenly on a parchment-lined pizza tray or baking tray. You can wet your fingertips lightly to help you with this step since the dough is sticky.

Next, pre-bake the dough until the edges are nice and golden. This step is necessary before topping and prevents you from getting a soggy crust at the end.

Top with your favorite toppings and bake again for a final 8 minutes then serve.

Substitutions and Alternatives  

Flax Egg – A simple combination of ground flaxseed and warm or hot water makes a great egg replacement. If you don’t have flaxseed feel free to use chia seeds or your favorite vegan egg replacement that equals one egg.

Gluten-free Flour – I recommend using a gluten-free flour blend like this one,  as opposed to mixing several different gluten-free flours. However, you can also use unbleached all-purpose flour or whole wheat flour at the same amount.

Oregano – Oregano is a huge part of pizza making so this herb really shouldn’t be substituted unless you’re replacing dried with fresh. But if you absolutely have no choice then try some thyme or basil – dried or fresh will work.

Toppings – Top your pizza with any veggies and ingredients of your choice. Pre-cook any raw toppings like mushrooms or bell peppers before adding them to the crust.

How to Store Homemade Pizza Sauce

This sauce recipe makes enough for at least three pizzas. So if you are doubling the cauliflower pizza crust, then you don’t need to make any additional sauce because there will be plenty.

Leftover pizza sauce can also be stored in an airtight container in the fridge where it will keep fresh for up to 1 week. Or you can freeze it for up to 2-3 months. You can also use this pizza sauce on pasta!

How to Stop Cauliflower Pizza Crust From Falling Apart

Making a cauliflower pizza crust completely vegan and gluten-free can be a challenge. The biggest struggle that most people have is ensuring that the cauliflower crust doesn’t fall apart once it’s finished baking.

Tip 1. Remove Moisture From the Cauliflower

The key to making a cauliflower crust that holds up during and after baking, is to ensure that the cauliflower is dry enough.

Cauliflower tends to yield a lot of water and this moisture is what causes the final crust to be soggy. Ensure that you squeeze out as much water – about ½ cup from one head of cauliflower – as possible before adding any other ingredients.

As per the instructions, you do this with the cooked cauliflower rice by straining it through a cheesecloth or clean kitchen towel.

Tips 2. Use a Binder Such as Flax Egg

The next tip is to use a binder of some sort. Since this is a vegan recipe there is no need for any animal products, so I didn’t use any eggs. As a substitute for eggs, I made a “flax egg”.

This is essentially mixing 1 part ground flaxseed with 3 parts warm or hot water then setting it aside allowing it to “gel” up. This “gel” is then used as a replacement for eggs in most recipes such as this cauliflower pizza crust.

The flax egg acts as a great binder while adding some much-needed fiber and protein.

Tip 3. Pre-Bake the Cauliflower Crust

Cooked Vegan Cauliflower Pizza Crust
Cooked Vegan Cauliflower Pizza Crust

My next tip is to pre-bake your cauliflower crust before topping it with anything. This is an important step and really helps to keep the crust stable at the end.

Be sure to roll your crust thin and even. That way it bakes evenly and at the same time.

Tip 4. Minimize Sauce

Vegan Cauliflower Pizza with Margherita Topping
Minimize sauce and topping on Vegan Cauliflower Pizza so it holds together

My last and final tip is to top your crust with a small amount of sauce. Too much sauce will also cause it to get mushy when it bakes the final time.

Equipment Used For This Recipe

  • Food Processor (for processing cauliflower rice)
  • Medium to Large Pot (for boiling cauliflower rice)
  • Cheesecloth or Clean Kitchen Towel (for draining liquid from the cauliflower rice)
  • Medium Mixing Bowl
  • Baking Tray (or Pizza Tray)
  • Parchment Paper
  • Medium-Sized Saucepan (for the tomato pizza sauce)
  • Small Bowl or Cup (for mixing flax egg)

Vegan Cauliflower Pizza Crust Recipe (Gluten-Free)

Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time1 hr 30 mins
Total Time1 hr 50 mins
Course: Appetizer, Main Course
Servings: 1 Pizza

Ingredients

Vegan Cauliflower Pizza Crust

  • 1 large head of Cauliflower (roughly chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon flaxseed (ground) + ¼ cup warm water to make flax egg
  • ½ cup gluten-free flour (all purpose flour works well too)
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • pinch of black pepper

Homemade Pizza Sauce

  • 1 can of crushed tomatoes (14.5oz)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¼ cup onion (chopped)
  • 3 cloves garlic (minced)
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper

Pizza Toppings

  • Handful of basil (fresh)
  • 1 tomato (sliced)
  • ½ cup vegan mozzarella cheese (grated)

Instructions

  • Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F (190 C).
  • Make the flax egg by mixing the ground flaxseed with the water in a small bowl or cup, and set aside.
  • Add the chopped cauliflower to a food processor and pulse until it breaks down and resembles the texture of rice.
  • Fill a large pot with water – about 5 cups – and bring to a boil. When the water is boiling, add the riced cauliflower and allow it to cook for 5-8 minutes or until the cauliflower is tender.
  • Drain the cauliflower and allow it to cool (this will take about 5 minutes). When the cauliflower is cool enough to handle, add it to a cheesecloth or a clean kitchen towel and squeeze as much water as you can from the cauliflower.
  • When finished, add the cauliflower to a medium-sized bowl along with the remaining ingredients for the cauliflower crust – flax egg, flour, salt, black pepper, oregano and garlic powder – and mix until a dough forms using your hands.
  • Line a pizza tray or baking tray with parchment paper then carefully form the dough into a circle onto the tray. Ensure that the crust is evenly spread for even cooking then bake for 40 minutes.
  • At this point, make the tomato sauce. Heat the oil in a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat. Once heated add the oil and onion and saute for 1 minute. Now add the garlic and saute for an additional minute. Gently pour in the crushed tomatoes and season with salt, black pepper and sugar. Reduce the heat to a simmer and let the sauce cook for 20 minutes. When finished, set aside to cool.
  • Remove the crust from the oven and gently flip it over on the other side. Do this by first loosening the crust using a spatula. Then place another piece of parchment paper on top of the crust, and gently flip the crust then bake for an additional 10 minutes until the edges are nice and golden brown.
  • When the time is up, remove the crust from the oven and top with ¼ cup of tomato sauce, some tomato slices and vegan mozzarella cheese. Bake in the oven for another 8-10 minutes until the cheese is melted.
  • Remove from the oven and finish with torn leaves of fresh basil. Allow the pizza to cool for 3 minutes before slicing and serving.
Vegan Cauliflower Pizza Crust

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