Easy, Tasty Gluten-Free Pizza Crust
Gluten intolerance is an issue that some people face. There are different levels of gluten sensitivity, including severe issues related to diseases such as celiac. For others, increased sensitivity to breads and other foods may cause them to search for options that don't contain gluten, a known trigger for some people who suffer from different digestive disorders.
But going gluten-free can be challenging. So many recipes use flour or depend on bread products. The alternatives can be hard to find.
I love pizza, but after developing a sensitivity to gluten, I began searching for alternatives for the crust. After many failed experiments, I found that this simple and easy recipe actually made a decent, thin-crust pizza that I could enjoy.
- 2 cups gluten-free flour (I used rice flour, but you can experiment with others)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
- 1 cup warm water
- olive oil or another oil, to grease the pan and keep the crust from sticking
- Preheat oven to 425°F. Measure out two cups rice flour or substitute any other gluten-free flour or gluten-free flour blend. Place in a medium sized mixing bowl.
- Add 1 teaspoon of salt to flour.
- Add 1 tablespoon of sugar to mixture.
- Add 1 tablespoon of active yeast to mixture.
- Stir these dry ingredients together.
- Add one cup of warm (not hot) water.
- Stir together. The dough will be thick.
- Allow to sit for five to ten minutes, covered with a cheese cloth or towel.
- Grease a cookie sheet or round pizza pan. (I prefer olive oil but you can use another oil if you don't like the taste.)
- Take the mixture out of the bowl and place on the greased pan.
- Slowly pat the mixture outwards towards the edges of the pan. The crust is not stretchy like regular, flour pizza crust.
- If desired, take a dinner knife and cut the ragged edges of the pizza crust off to give it a smoother line.
- Bake with no toppings or sauce for 10 minutes at 425°F.
- Remove from oven and add desired sauce and toppings.
- Place back in the oven for 10 to 15 minutes or until cheese is bubbly.
- Remove and allow pizza to sit for 5 minutes.
- Enjoy your tasty, gluten-free pizza.
Photo GuideClick thumbnail to view full-size
Experiment With Your Pizza
Once you have your crust perfected, you can experiment with all your favorite pizza flavors. I like to take my family's favorite tastes and make new pizza creations. Here are some of the ones that my family enjoys.
Toppings to Add
How to Make It
Tomato Sauce, Mozarella Cheese, Ham (thin sliced or cubed), pineapple chunks
Get a taste of the islands by adding some pineapple to your traditional ham pizza. You can add a lot or a little to make it more or less sweet. If you really like pineapple, try adding some crushed, spread evenly over the pizza for a burst of sweetness in every bite.
BBQ Sauce, Mozarella and Cheddar Cheese, Sliced or Grilled Chicken
Do you like BBQ chicken? Then you'll love this recipe. Instead of using tomato sauce, use your favorite BBQ sauce as the base. Then add cheese (I like to add a mix of cheese). Place cubed or diced chicken on top. (Note: You can get pre-cooked, grilled chicken at your grocery store, usually in then lunch meats section). You can drizzle a bit more BBQ on top before serving. It tastes just like a summer day.
Ranch Dressing, Mozarella/Cheddar, Buffalo Chicken
Do you love chicken wings dipped in ranch dressing? Then try this variation of pizza. You can make the base of the pizza ranch dressing instead of tomato sauce. Then add your cheese of choice. Finally top with fried, boneless chicken, chopped into pieces and dipped in buffalo sauce. (I like the mild sauce but if you like it hot, then go for it). You can drizzle a bit more ranch dressing on top, right before serving. Try it. You'll like it!
Mustard/Ketchup, Cheddar Cheese, Bacon Pieces, Hamburger Crumbles, Shredded Lettuce, Diced Tomatoes, Diced Onions, Ketchup
If you love burgers and pizza then this all American recipe is for you. Use ketchup and mustard as your sauce. I use a little bit of mustard mixed with a lot of ketchup but you can experiment to taste. Then add cheese. I like cheddar as it tastes more like something that I would put on a burger. Top with bacon crumbles and cut up or crumbled/seasoned ground beef. Bake. Then add diced tomatoes, lettuce, and onion before serving. You now have a burger pizza!
Is Gluten-Free Just a Fad?
The answer to this one is: maybe, maybe not.
My own personal journey to eliminating gluten began when I had months of unresolved stomach and digestive issues. I tried eliminating different food groups from my diet, including dairy, but I did not find relief. Then, after accidentally having a meal that did not involve any type of bread product, I realized that my usual digestion issues after eating were not happening.
After some more experimenting, I realized that something in bread was definitely contributing to my discomfort. Eliminating bread and pasta allowed me to begin to feel better. After research, I realized that there may be certain food groups that I need to avoid known as FODMAPS.
What Are FODMAPS?
FODMAPS are a group of food that are "short chain carbohydrates" (fodmapfriendly.com). Other foods on the list, such as many fruits like watermelon, also give me issues.
Understanding food intolerance (vs. allergies that are more testable) is hard. And yes, some people who have no issue with gluten do eliminate it because of worries about genetic modification of wheat or about the health benefits of gluten.
But, despite that fact that it seems trendy, there are those who faces issues with gluten and don't really understand why.
Being Gluten-Free Is Not Easy
While experts and researchers are still trying to understand why some people have issues when eating gluten (other than the known diseases that make one gluten-intolerant), those that suffer from the issue are trying to cope the best that they can.
I know that until it happened to me, I was skeptical about those who were eating gluten-free. But truly, even if people are eating gluten-free by choice and not because of digestive issues, it is important to have good recipes and products available.
As more research is conducted, there will hopefully be answers available for those that suffer. In the meantime, being gluten-free doesn't mean you have to give up all of your favorite foods.
Why Do You Eat Gluten-Free?
Questions & Answers
© 2016 L C David