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Apr 15, 2019 BY Joy McCarthy

Quinoa Pizza Crust

—  found in  Food  —

In my family, pizza is serious business! Whether we're making pizza at home like the Best Ever Gluten-free Pizza Crust or going out to our favourite pizzeria in Toronto like Libretto or Defina Wood Fired, we don't mess around – only the best will do! Dominos or 2-4-1 Pizza (does that even exist anymore?) are outta the question. I don't mean to sound snooty, but I told you pizza was a serious matter in the McJordan family!

Pizza with Quinoa Crust

The reason I made this recipe to share with you guys was that my colleague Amanda was chowing on a quinoa pizza crust at lunch last week, and it got me thinking... I've made the Best Ever Gluten-free Pizza Crust at least 100 times and I really want to find a totally plant-based pizza crust to share with you guys that's also egg- and dairy-free. I came across this recipe from Tasty and adapted it by changing up a few ingredients and making it vegan. I love the fact that the base is made of quinoa because it's a total superfood! 

QUINOA IS A NUTRIENT-DENSE SUPERFOOD SEED

  • Complete protein. One of the few plant-based foods that's a complete protein, quinoa is satiating and nourishing. 
  • Phytonutrient-rich. More than 20 different phenolic phytonutrients, which provide antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects to the body, have been identified in quinoa. 
  • Gluten-free AND grain-free. Although it's often grouped into the same family as wheat, oats, barley, rye, rice and millet, quinoa is a non-grass food and it's a seed, not a grain. 

This recipe makes a super easy sheet pan pizza – meaning you simply spread the batter onto a baking sheet, bake and go!

Since I broke my pizza stone last year I've only been doing large rectangular pizzas on a baking sheet. (Note to self: I do need to get a new pizza stone. Especially since the spelt flour pizza crust from my first cookbook Joyous Health is absolutely amazing and it's best made on a pizza stone.

As mentioned, the ingredients are super-duper simple. Once you've soaked the quinoa for eight hours (this step is KEY, DO NOT skip it and do not skip rinsing it either), you blend all the ingredients together in a food processor. You will have a very sore belly if you don't prepare the quinoa properly because of the saponins and the soaking is key for the quinoa to absorb some water and soften.

vegan quinoa pizza crust ingredients in food processor

What are saponins?

They're phytochemicals, naturally present in foods like quinoa, that have a very bitter taste. They have an important purpose for the plants that contain them to act as a natural protection from pests. However, the bitter taste they produce is quite irritating to the digestive system. They're significantly reduced by soaking and rinsing. When you soak the quinoa, the suds produced are evidence of saponins. Some brands of quinoa will be labelled "pre-rinsed", so you don't have to worry about soaking and rinsing if you're just making quinoa but you still have to soak with this recipe.

quinoa soaking in glass bowl

Then you slather the batter onto a baking sheet.

vegan quinoa pizza crust spreading on baking sheet

And if you have a little helper on standby, this part is just as fun as the pizza toppings!

This pizza is pick-up-and-eat style, meaning, no fork and knife necessary (unless that's your preference). It's crunchy and fulfilling!

As you'll soon see in the recipe instructions, you bake the crust first and then add your favourite toppings.

vegan quinoa pizza crust

I divided this pizza into thirds, since Walker, Vienna and I like different toppings. I tried some of everyone's but I think my portion was the best ;)

Any guesses on which section belonged to who? Comment below! :)

Section 1: soft goat cheese, zucchini, grape tomatoes, red onion (garnished with basil). 

Pizza with Quinoa Crust

Section 2: goat cheddar and nitrate-free pepperoni.

Pizza with Quinoa Crust

Section 3: burrata cheese, grape tomatoes (garnished with basil).

Pizza with Quinoa Crust

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Ingredients
  • 2 ½ cups quinoa, uncooked
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 2 tbsp garlic powder
  • 2 tbsp dried Italian herbs
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
Instructions
  1. Place the quinoa in a large bowl. Add enough water to cover the quinoa and let sit overnight or at least 8 hours. After 8 hours, drain the water and rinse the quinoa thoroughly with a wire mesh strainer, or pour it into a nutbag to rinse. Do not skip this step even if you are using 'pre-rinsed' quinoa. It won't work unless it's soaked for a long time to absorb water and soften.
  2. Preheat the oven to 400F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. Add the quinoa, 1 cup of water, the baking powder, garlic powder, Italian herbs, salt, and nutritional yeast to a food processor. Blend until a smooth batter forms.
  4. Pour the batter onto the baking sheet, using a spatula to spread evenly across the sheet.
  5. Bake the crust for 15 minutes. Flip the crust, removing the parchment paper, and bake for 10 minutes more, or until golden brown.
  6. Top the crust with your favourite toppings (see notes) and then put back in the oven for another 10 minutes.
  7. Cut into squares and serve!

Notes

PLEASE NOTE: I've put this recipe in the "vegan" section of my blog because the pizza crust is vegan, but it is up to you what you serve it with.

Serves 4.

I divided the toppings for this pizza into three sections and spread tomato sauce as the base under the toppings:

Section 1: soft goat cheese, sliced zucchini, thinly sliced red onion, grape tomatoes halved.

Section 2: grated goat cheddar, nitrate-free pepperoni

Section 3: grape tomatoes halved, burrata cheese and fresh basil (added after baking)

The toppings were magical!

Pizza with Quinoa Crust

This pizza didn't last long. Walker and I tried each section, but Vienna stuck to her own.

Pizza with Quinoa Crust

You may notice I didn't use any cow dairy on my third of the pizza. I tend to avoid cow dairy products because they don't agree with me, but goat or sheep milk products are just fine. (Oops, I kinda gave it away!).

Pizza with Quinoa Crust

More pizza photos, just because it was so yummy and so good looking!

Pizza with Quinoa Crust

We enjoyed this with the Juicy and Crunchy Kale salad – that's our favourite salad to make. Vienna picks out all her favourite ingredients and Walker and I fill at least half our plate with salad and the other half with pizza.

I hope you try out this pizza! If you don't avoid eggs and/or you're not vegan, my Best Ever Gluten-free Pizza Crust has been a go-to for years.

I'm excited to see your pizza creations! Be sure to tag me on social @joyoushealth 

Joy xo

ps. If you have leftover quinoa and you're looking for more quinoa recipes, then this Flourless Chocolate Cake is a must! Perhaps not with this pizza – that would be quinoa overload – but put it in your back pocket for the next time you need a decadent yet healthy chocolate cake recipe, you won't be disappointed!

flourless chocolate cake with strawberries and coconut cream

Apr 15, 2019 BY Joy McCarthy
22 Comments
Robyn H.   •   April 16, 2019

Looks like perfection! Can’t wait to try it!!!

Reply
Joy McCarthy   •   April 16, 2019

Steve   •   April 16, 2019

Is the 2 tablespoons of garlic powder a typo?

Reply
Joy McCarthy   •   April 16, 2019

Paulina   •   April 16, 2019

Looks amazing! So if I buy pre rinsed quinoa I just have to put it directly into the food processor with the rest of the ingredients?

Reply
Joy McCarthy   •   April 16, 2019

Jess   •   April 16, 2019

Yum! Does the crust freeze well?

Reply
Joy McCarthy   •   April 16, 2019

Danielle   •   April 16, 2019

I love your Best ever Gluten Free crust but was looking for another version to have on hand when I didn't want to have cheese/eggs in the crust. Can't wait to make this!

Reply
Joy McCarthy   •   April 18, 2019

n S.   •   April 18, 2019

Hello, Should the oven temp be 400F regular or 400F convect bake? Thanks!

Reply
Joy McCarthy   •   April 18, 2019

Jen W.   •   April 19, 2019

Hi I just made this, it was yummy but the crust wasn’t crunchy.is it because I forgot to flip it? Also, Should the quinoa be completely blended smoothly so that there’s no whole pieces?

Reply
Joy McCarthy   •   April 20, 2019

Christina   •   April 19, 2019

To clarify, if cooking quinoa in general, soak 8 hours and rinse before cooking??

Reply
Joy McCarthy   •   April 20, 2019

Jen   •   April 22, 2019

Just wondered if anyone has a treak to flip it?

Reply
Joy McCarthy   •   April 23, 2019

Jen   •   April 23, 2019

Yes, but it wasn't as firm as I am thinking it should have been. Gonna try it with a different quinoa, as it didn't turn out with a Costco brand I have...but I haven't had any luck with cooking it otherwise either.

Reply

MARISOL MEDINA   •   April 25, 2019

Section 1: Joy; Section 2: Vienna; Section 3: Walker...? Lol This looks SO delicious, my family has pizza at least once a week. We buy frozen, which I'm switching to homemade for sure. Thanks for the recipe!

Reply
Joy McCarthy   •   April 25, 2019

Yanna S.   •   May 23, 2019

What if you use the sprouted quinoa? Did anyone use it before? What is the best brand to use for this recipe?

Reply

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