Pizza Crust - Low Carb, Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Paleo!
I really missed pizza when I went low carb. I thought it was relegated to the serious cheating category. I was sure that I could never again eat pizza without feeling bad the next day or bad about myself the same day. A friend discovered cauliflower pizza crust. We made do with that for awhile. But wet cauliflower, no matter how much cheese and egg you put into it, just doesn't really fit the bill. Pizza crust needs to be crisp. It also needs to taste good on it's own and not just be a hard platform for toppings.
A mixture of olive oil, herbs, parmesan cheese, almond flour, arrowroot, and eggs really works. It creates a low carb pizza crust worth eating. Really and truly. No wishful thinking or making-do. I won't pretend that I prefer it to wheat flour pizza crust. But I do feel like it is delicious and a truly satisfying substitute. So low carb and paleo pizza lovers, don't despair! This recipe creates a pizza that my family and friends really look forward to eating.
No dough rolling is required. The dough gets pressed into a very thin (1/8") layer in an oiled pan with your fingers. It's easy. It takes a few minutes to measure everything out and mix it, and 5-7 minutes to press it into the pan. There will be a little dough leftover. Don't be tempted to use it, because you want this crust to be thin. I wanted to stick with normal measurements – as opposed to 1/8 of a cup of something, so this was as close as I could come for a normal pan size. Hence the leftover ball of dough. The dough freezes very well. I wrap the leftover piece in plastic and pop it into the freezer. When I have 3 frozen dough pieces that's enough for a "free" pizza crust. Just defrost them and use.
This dough does have some carbs in it from the arrowroot. I'm no expert but I did a little research on arrowroot and here's what I discovered: arrowroot is a very minimally processed food. It's also gluten free and has good levels of B vitamins and moderate levels of some other important minerals.
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Fills a rimmed baking sheet 11"x16"
2 cups almond flour (also called almond meal)
1/2 cup arrowroot powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 cup parmesan cheese, optional
2 tablespoons dried herbs (I use herbes de provence or 1 tablespoon dried basil, 1/2 tablespoon dried oregano, 1/2 tablespoon dried rosemary)
1/4 cup olive oil plus 1 tablespoon for greasing baking pan
- Preheat the oven to 350°and set rack in the middle of the oven.
Crack 2 eggs in a medium bowl and beat them with a fork. Add all the other ingredients.
Mix until all ingredients are fully combined. I use my hands because it is quicker. Dough will be very soft. The dough may be made 1 day ahead of time, up until this point. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate until ready to use.
Spread 1 tablespoon of olive oil in baking pan. Using your fingers, press dough thinly, evenly, and firmly onto baking pan until it just covers the pan. It will be about 1/8? thick. This is a little tedious but doesn't take too long. You will have about 1/4 cup of dough left over. Don't be tempted to make the crust thicker by using the leftover dough. This crust is best very thin. Wrap leftover dough in plastic and freeze it. When you have 3 leftover frozen dough packets, defrost for 1 "free" crust.
- Bake crust for 15- 20 minutes, until lightly brown.
- Remove from oven and add pizza toppings of your choice or see my recipe for Sausage, Eggplant, and Zucchini Pizza.
- Note: the crust stays crisper if you put a layer of cheese directly on top of the crust to “protect” it from the wet sauce and vegetables. To keep the crust crisp, I put only a very little bit of tomato sauce on the pizza, or sometimes none at all, and serve the sauce at the table.
- Return to the oven, and bake for an additional 15 minutes, until toppings are hot. At the end, if you’d like the cheese to brown, set oven temperature to broil and broil for a minute or so. Serve immediately.