Tasty Trends: Alternative Pizza Crusts

by Kelsey King

Photography by Kelsey King

From zucchini noodles to cauliflower rice, alternative carbs are overflowing foodstagrams and Pinterest dashboards. Alternative pizza crusts are no exception.

The reasons for this are varied, ranging from Paleo diet fads to gluten sensitivity, trimmer waistline dreams to wholesome lifestyle trends and more. Whatever the case may be, couple it with a love for marinara and mozzarella, and here we find ourselves.

“I’ve taken the time to seek out recipes more times than I can probably count—like actively searching for recipes with alternative forms of pasta or something—but a lot of them seem to just take so much effort, and I’m lazy!” says Kylie Sakaida (SAR ’17). “If there was something that was easy, say with only a couple of ingredients and no fancy kitchen equipment or tools required of me, then I think I could take the plunge.

Below are three simple, easy ways to swap out traditional pizza dough for something a little more nuanced and nutritious.

“Alternative crusts are such a great way to get an extra serving of veggies. And covering them in sauce and cheese?” said Kelsey Lloyd (SAR ’17). “I mean, come on, you aren’t even going to know they’re there.”

Each of the recipes below is for two servings.

Bon appetit.

Chickpea Flour Crust

Adapted from The Colorful Kitchen

Ingredients

  • 1 cup chickpea flour

  • ½ cup water

  • 1 tsp olive oil

  • pinch of salt

Directions

  1. Preheat oven or toaster oven to 375˚F

  2. Mix above ingredients until thoroughly combined

  3. Spread mixture on parchment lined baking sheet until 1/8-¼ inch thick

  4. Bake for 15-20 minutes

  5. Remove from oven and flip

  6. Spread sauce and toppings on crust

  7. Return to oven for 5-7 minutes, or until cheese has melted

Sliced Eggplant Crust

Ingredients

  • 2 Chinese eggplants (or 1 small standard eggplant)

  • Olive oil

Directions

  1. Preheat oven or toaster oven to 450˚F

  2. Slice eggplants lengthwise into ½ inch thick pieces and brush with olive oil

  3. Bake for 6-10 minutes, or until almost tender, turning once

  4. Spread sauce and toppings on crust

  5. Return to oven for 3-5 minutes, or until cheese has melted

Portobello Mushroom Crust

Adapted from The Food Network

Ingredients

  • 2-4 Portobello mushroom caps

  • Olive oil

Directions

  1. Preheat grill to 475˚F

  2. Brush mushroom caps with olive oil

  3. Cook for 10-20 minutes, or until tender, flipping every few minutes

  4. Spread sauce and toppings on crust

  5. Close grill and continue to cook 4-7 minutes, or until cheese has melted