Do you suffer from dieter’s remorse every time you eat a piece of pizza? You can eliminate those feelings of guilt — and a lot of fat, calories, and unhealthy ingredients — by ditching traditional flour-based crusts and using a vegetable base for your pizza instead. In addition to being far healthier than a typical pizza crust, vegetable crusts are also easier to prepare. There’s no need to wait around for the dough to rise; simply cut and steam your veggies, mix your ingredients, and bake. From a nutrient-rich sweet potato crust to a delicious-tasting broccoli base, these six recipes allow you to partake in pizza night without worrying about your waistline.
1. Spinach Pizza Crust
Five ingredients and 25 minutes are all you need to prepare Food.com’s grain-free Spinach Pizza Crust, which is chock-full of vitamins, minerals, and health benefits. Men’s Fitness notes that spinach promotes healthy eyesight, contains almost 200% of the daily value of vitamin K, and is packed with iron.
- 2 cups spinach
- 1 egg
- ½ cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 1 teaspoon basil
- ½ teaspoon oregano
Directions: Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Blend spinach and mozzarella in a food processor. Add egg and blend. Spread on parchment paper and bake for 15 minutes. Edges should brown. Add your favorite sauce and toppings and broil until cheese melts.
2. Sweet Potato Crust Pizza
PopSugar’s Sweet Potato Crust is a gluten-free, veggie-filled crust that will be the life of your pizza party. Filled with vitamin A, protein, and fiber, this healthy crust pairs well with simple toppings, such as grape tomatoes, basil, and red pepper flakes.
- 2 to 3 medium sweet potatoes
- 1 cup almond flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ cup pizza sauce
- ½ cup mozzarella cheese
- Toppings of your choice
Directions: Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and set a large pot of water to boil. Peel and cut your sweet potatoes into quarters. Add potatoes to boiling water, turn down to simmer, and boil for about 20 minutes or until a knife easily pierces the flesh. Drain potatoes from the water and mash well in a large bowl. Add one cup of your sweet potato mash, almond flour, baking soda, Italian seasoning, and salt to a large bowl.
Knead the ingredients together until the mixture resembles a ball of orange pizza dough. Line a baking sheet or pizza pan with parchment paper and press out the dough to a large circle. The dough should be about ½ inch thick. Bake in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes or until the edges of the dough are slightly browned. Remove pizza from the oven, add the sauce, cheese, and topping, and broil for 3 to 5 minutes until cheese is melted.
3. Zucchini Crust
Taste of Home’s zucchini-based crust isn’t entirely grain free, but it’s a nutritional option nonetheless. SFGate explains that zucchini, which is a good source of magnesium, fiber, and folate, supports your metabolism, keeps you feeling full longer, and plays a role in bone health.
- 3 cups shredded zucchini
- ¾ cup egg substitute
- ⅓ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
- 2 small tomatoes, halved and thinly sliced
- ½ cup chopped onion
- ½ cup julienned green pepper
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon dried basil
- 3 tablespoons shredded Parmesan cheese
Directions: Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. In a large bowl, combine zucchini and egg substitute. Stir in flour and salt. Spread onto the bottom of a 12-inch pizza pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 450 degrees Fahrenheit for 9 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Sprinkle with the mozzarella, tomatoes, onion, green pepper, oregano, basil, and Parmesan cheese. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until onion is tender and cheese is melted.
4. Carrot Crust
As visually appealing as it is delicious, The Saffron Girl’s Carrot Crust is the perfect base for your favorite pizza toppings. To ensure your crust has a nice, crispy texture, make sure you squeeze as much water as you can from the carrots before combining them with the rest of the ingredients. This recipe was adapted from Farmgirl Gourmet.
- 4 cups carrots, grated and squeezed
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 3 eggs
- 4 tablespoons coconut flour
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- Freshly ground pepper, to taste
- ½ teaspoon cardamom, optional
Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Butter the bottom and sides of a springform cake tin and line with parchment paper. Add some olive oil on top of the paper and with your hands or a paper towel, and spread the oil around the parchment paper. Set aside. Peel about 6 to 8 large carrots and squeeze the water out of them. Measure 4 cups; place the grated carrots in a large bowl.
Add the butter and eggs, and with your hands, mix well, cutting the butter into the mixture. Add the coconut flour and spices, and knead until all is well-blended. Scoop the carrot mixture into the prepared cake tin, and using your hands, spread it out evenly to form a pie shell. Bake for about 35 minutes, remove from the oven, add toppings, and bake again until the pizza is done to your liking.
5. Broccoli Pizza Crust
There is no shortage of nutrients in Oregon’s Broccoli Pizza Crust, which yields 2 servings. Care2 commends broccoli for its many health benefits, noting that the cruciferous vegetable reduces your risk of cancer, lowers your cholesterol, and prevents osteoporosis.
- 1 (16-ounce) head of broccoli
- 1 egg plus 1 egg white
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon ground oats
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon oregano
- ½ teaspoon basil
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
Directions: Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Make broccoli rice by pulsing a large head of broccoli in the food processor about 20 times until it looks like grains of rice. Measure out 2 packed cups of broccoli rice. In a saucepan, begin heating ¼ cup water until steaming. Add the broccoli rice, and then turn off the heat and cover the pan for 5 minutes to let it steam. Once the broccoli rice is steamed, squeeze it in a dish towel to get out any extra water.
In a bowl, combine the egg, egg white, olive oil, oats, salt, and spices. Add in the broccoli rice and mix everything well. Line a baking sheet with parchment and spread the mixture into two little round crusts. Bake these for 15 to 20 minutes, taking them out when the edges are crispy and have peeled up. Remove the pan from the oven and top pizzas with desired toppings. Bake for another 5 to 8 minutes until toppings are warm.
6. Cauliflower Pizza Crust
Cauliflower is the perfect replacement for refined white flour. To prepare AllRecipes.com’s healthy crust, shred and steam the cauliflower, combine it with cheese, parsley, egg, garlic, salt, and pepper, and bake until it’s lightly browned. It yields 6 servings.
- ½ head cauliflower, coarsely chopped
- ½ cup shredded Italian cheese blend
- ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon chopped garlic
- Salt and ground black pepper, to taste
Directions: Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicon mat. Place cauliflower pieces through the feeding tube of the food processor using the grating blade; pulse until all the cauliflower is shredded. Place a steamer insert into a saucepan and fill with water to just below the bottom of the steamer. Bring water to a boil. Add cauliflower, cover, and steam until tender, about 15 minutes.
Transfer cauliflower to a large bowl and refrigerate, stirring occasionally, until cooled, about 15 minutes. Stir Italian cheese blend, parsley, egg, garlic, salt, and pepper into cauliflower until evenly incorporated. Pour mixture onto the prepared baking sheet; press and shape into a pizza crust. Bake in the preheated oven until lightly browned, about 15 minutes.