The Guy I Married’s affinity for all things fried, starched, potatoed, and meated has been mentioned by me more than a handful of times. Even before we had a child I was well versed in the kitchen art of sneaky-sneak veggie tricks, mixing frozen spinach in every sort of pasta sauce possible and fibbing that yes, those tiny chopped bell peppers in your scrambled eggs are just basil and oregano flakes. Good thing I married a blond who thinks Chili’s is fine dining.
In over five years of cohabitation he’s gotten used to my tricks, and has even admitted to liking spinach (and doesn’t know the difference between spinach, kale, or swiss chard) but I have never had the culinary chutzpah to go full-on cauliflower-subbing on him, by making cauliflower mashed “potatoes” for instance. That, he’d spot a mile away. Try as I did to accomplish this recipe without him knowing the full ingredients… have you ever tried hiding a whole head of cauliflower in a fridge? Not easy, trust me. When questioned, I felt it best to tell the truth, for once.
I’ve made unconventional crust pizza before. Hungry Girl’s Loaded and Oated crust was on regular rotation in our household for a long time, and TGIM choked it down a couple of times before finally resisting due to its heaviness and texture. Much as I love HG, I think I might be trading up to the cauliflower crust from now on, for everyone in the house. The most time-consuming part of this recipe is prepping the cauliflower, but that’s not saying much because the washing, ripping, chopping, and microwaving goes faster than you’d think. It can, however, be very messy. The little riced bits will get everywhere and drive you bananas.
The crust ended up looking a lot like actual flour pizza crust, and that’s without any brushing of olive oil. Looked fab.
As far as time commitment is concerned, while it sounds daunting from reading the recipe, I made this on a weeknight and we still ate well before 7:00 p.m., which is always my goal.
To your left we have Exhibit Veg: a tomato sauce base topped with bell pepper, fresh basil, onion, and way too much shredded mozzarella. To your right we have Exhibit Meat: a tomato and barbecue sauce base topped with pepperoni, bacon bits, undercooked onion, and shredded cheddar.
And now, a confession: when making Exhibit Meat, I forgot to microwave the riced cauliflower before mixing in the eggs, etc. It didn’t appear to affect the consistency one way or another… which is to say that both of our crusts were a little on the floppy side. It could have been the circular pie pans I used instead of shaping the “dough” on a flat cookie sheet, but according to the comments from other Eat. Drink. Smile. readers it’s not uncommon. This is definitely fork-and-knife pizza.
Despite the crust consistency, the pickiest eater in the household devoured his pizza. We all did. Squirrel even got one of each. We liked it so much I repeated it a few days later when we hosted my brother-in-law for a few days. He took home the recipe to repeat for his beautiful gluten-free better half.
My fluffy white cauliflower bunch was about the size of a dinner plate and netted me a total of five nine-inch pizzas. Baking them smaller seems to be the better way to go – other EDS commenters note that doubling the recipe to make a larger pizza is kind of a failure. We’re so different on what we like on our pizza in my house, making them personal-sized just works out.
Moral of the Tutorial – Be sneaky when you have to, like ricing the cauliflower before he notices its foreign white head in the fridge.
Seriously, try this one. It really is easier than it sounds. Thanks for reading!