Hi hi hiiii! Hopping on to share a recipe that has been on repeat in the Loose household lately- 20 MINUTE VEGAN PIZZA. When I first went 100% plant-based vegan a few years ago, I had the hardest time finding pizza that I liked and that was also healthy. If you’re familiar with the way I eat and my plant based lifestyle, you’ve probably heard me preach on Instagram about how you can be “vegan” and still be eating things that are totally unhealthy and processed. That’s why I tend to refer to my recipes as plant-based over just vegan. I want my pizza to be full of nutrients and pretty unprocessed.
If you’re into that stuff too, then you’re in for a real treat!
The thing that always got me about vegan “pizza” was the cheese. Now don’t get me wrong, there are some great faux cheeses out there made with nut bases like cashews for example, or you can use Nutritional Yeast as an amazing cheese replacement too, but I found that most restaurants and even places like Whole Foods tend to use a brand called Daiya as the staple vegan cheese. Daiya is basically a vegan cheese made from cassava and arrowroot, which is fine and all, but it tasted too much like a knock-off real cheese to me (sorry no offense to the brand!) See the issue is that I have never liked cheese. Even before I went vegan I used to pick it all off and just eat the dough and red sauce HA. I know, odd but hey what can I say? We all have our food quirks. So, this cheesy issue is basically what led me on my mission to find a plantbased ‘za I could get down with.
Another major issue with pizza was the dough. Like for a while I thought going gluten free would make it healthier but then I realized gluten free dough can usually be worse for you as it’s stuffed with additives and preservatives, unless the dough is made with wholesome ingredients and wheat-free flour like chickpea or something. I usually go with a 100% organic whole wheat dough for my pizza, which you’ll see in the recipe. And if I can ever buy sprouted wheat, even better! I need to learn how to make that next.
Ok, on to the recipe! You’ll see this really is more so a template for you to get creative and throw on top whatever you’re feeling’ that day.
20 MINUTE VEGAN PIZZA
PREP TIME: 12 Minutes
COOK TIME: 8 Minutes
KITCHEN TOOLS: Pizza Stone, Blender or Coffee Bean Grinder
INGREDIENTS (ALL ORGANIC)
- Crust: Engine 2 100% Whole Wheat Stone Baked Pizza Crust (If you can’t find this brand on Amazon Fresh or at your local Whole Foods, you can really use any dough. Just check the ingredients and buy organic! I prefer this one from others I’ve tried and it saves time instead of making from scratch!)
- Base: You can use a few different things here. To make it most like a traditional pizza, use a pizza sauce. To switch this up and make it a white pizza, I sometimes use plain hummus or my homemade pesto!
- 2 cups Spinach and/or Arugula
- Veggies: 2 cups worth of eggplant, bell peppers, onions, mushrooms, olives, tomatoes, pre-cut & sliced artichokes (I personally like the fresh packs of artichokes you can find in the produce aisle!) Since we are adding about 2 cups worth of veggies to the pizza, you won’t need more than like ½ a bell pepper, ½ a small eggplant, ½ an onion, and a handful of mushrooms, for example. You can eyeball all this and if you cook too much just save the leftovers for on top of a salad or with a side of quinoa at your next meal!)
- 3 tablespoons pine nuts
- Small handful cashews
- 2 Tablespoons Bragg’s Nutritional Yeast
- Celtic sea salt to taste
- Red pepper flakes to taste
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees
- If you have a pizza baking stone, pull it out and place your crust on it! You can also place the crust directly onto the oven rack if you don’t have a baking stone.
- Evenly spread on the base of choice (pizza sauce, hummus, or pesto).
- Place the spinach and/or arugula on top.
- Chop your veggies of choice (eggplant, bell peppers, onions, mushrooms, olives, tomatoes, artichokes).
- Cook the more firm/crunchier veggies (that will take longer to soften) in a stove top pan and add a little avocado oil (I prefer to cook with avocado over olive oil since it’s better for cooking on high heat!) This would be the eggplant, bell peppers, and onions.
- Once these cook for about 5 minutes, add the softer veggies to the pan like mushrooms, olives, tomatoes, artichokes. Let heat for another 3-5 minutes.
- Transfer the pan cooked veggies to the crust and spread out evenly on top of the fresh greens.
- Use a blender or even just a small coffee bean grinder to grind up the handful of cashews. You want to basically grind up enough to look like parmesan cheese when you’re done. Then sprinkle on top.
- Sprinkle on the nutritional yeast.
- Add the pine nuts and celtic sea salt.
- Pop into the oven for 8-10 minutes until the crust turns golden brown!
- And viola! ‘Za is done and ready to go. Top with red pepper flakes and serve with a side of marinara sauce or vegan pesto!