Cauliflower Pizza with Cashew Pesto

Savory Cauliflower Flatbread Pizza with Cashew Pesto - Carolyn's Pantry
Savory Cauliflower Flatbread Pizza with Cashew Pesto - Carolyn's Pantry

When you think of pizza, the words “healthy”, “gluten-free”, “veggie-packed”, and “vegan” never really come to mind without thoughts of funky cardboard-y concoctions, but I’m here to tell you that it really does exist! Check out this amazing recipe for gluten-free, vegan, plant-based Cauliflower Pizza! It might sound a bit weird at first, but trust me – it’s absolutely amazing. I love a slightly savory base, so I added tahini, lemon, cumin, and dried herbs to the dough and it’s soo good. The tahini has a great thickness that helps to hold everything together, but there is one other fantastic plant-based kitchen hack at work here: chia eggs. What??? Yep, very real. Just add water to chia seeds and watch them expand over an hour or so to form a sticky jelly. If you’re short on time, just heat them up and the seeds will absorb the water faster.  

I first made this when I was at my family’s home one night and just didn’t tell anyone that there was anything unusual about the pizza. My little sister, a huge pizza lover, couldn’t tell that there was anything strange about it but instead raved about how amazing it tasted! I love this recipe because you can make the dough in just a few minutes, then literally eat half a pizza entirely by yourself without feeling guilty! You instead feel incredibly nourished and sustained – it’s still a very filling recipe that is perfect for customizing with your favorite ingredients.

My way of cooking might sound a bit confusing at first, but it becomes totally simple and second nature if you break down recipes to their bare bones and start to think of healthier alternatives to their component ingredients. Replacing wheat flour with cauliflower and the eggs, yeast, and oil with chia, tahini, and lemon totally works. Cooking this recipe for the first time will bring a genuine smile to your face. I started jumping up and down like a weirdo alone in my kitchen when I first made it because I was just so proud that it tasted so good but was so healthy! Cauliflower is an amazing ingredient and does some fabulous things for your body: .

A round pizza dish is definitely on my list for kitchen purchases, but I don’t have one, so I simply made this a flatbread pizza with parchment paper on a normal cookie sheet and it worked so well.

The great thing about nailing a cauliflower pizza dough recipe is that you can customize it with all your favorite toppings later. I’ve become a huge pesto fan lately, so I made a simple pesto pizza topped with THE most amazing fresh, creamy cashew pesto you’ve ever had (trust me on this one!), zucchini, tomatoes, and fresh arugula after it came out of the oven.

Cashew Pesto - Carolyn's Pantry
Cashew Pesto - Carolyn's Pantry

Serves 4

Prep time: 20 Minutes

Pizza Dough Ingredients:
1 whole cauliflower
3 tbsp chia seeds
2/3 cup water
¼ cup tahini
Juice of ½ lemon
¾ cup oat flour or brown rice flour
½ tsp cumin
1 tsp dried parsley
1 tsp dried oregano
A dash of sea salt

Cashew Pesto Ingredients:
A big handful of basil
2/3 cup cashews
3 cloves garlic
Juice of 2 lemons
2/3 cup olive oil
A dash of sea salt

½ zucchini, sliced
½ summer squash, sliced
1 tomato, sliced
1 handful fresh arugula



Preheat oven to 400*F
The first step to making your pizza dough is to wash and roughly chop a whole head of cauliflower, then put it in your food processor for blending until you get a course meal. You might have to do this in stages if your cauliflower is really big, but just set the whole mixture aside when you’re done. To make the chia eggs, put the chia seeds in a bowl or cup, then add water and let sit until the water absorbs. This should take about 10-15 minutes. If you're short on time, heat the water first. Add the chia egg to the cauliflower meal, followed by the remaining dough ingredients. Stir until combined, then set aside.
To make the cashew pesto, start by washing out your food processor. Next toast the cashews by placing them on a baking sheet into the oven for about 3 minutes, or until slightly brown. Remove them, then pulse in the food processor until the nuts and broken up. Then, just add the remaining ingredients and blend until smooth.
You’re now ready to roll! Place a layer of parchment paper on a standard baking sheet and roll out your pizza into a flatbread shape. You want the dough to be roughly ½ an inch thick bake for 20-30 minutes until the dough is slightly crispy. Next, just spread the entire pesto mixture onto the dough and add the zucchini, summer squash, and tomatoes. Bake for another 10 minutes. Remove from the oven, top with the fresh arugula, and serve it up!