5.21.2020

Savory Plant Based Pizza

Try this plant based pizza recipe for your next family game night. The texture and flavor of a real homemade pizza + fantastic toppings.

Savory plant based pizza

Pizza is a staple in our household and Savory Plant-Based Pizza is one of our favorites! You can find this as well as 100+ recipes in my new book, Simple Green Meals. 

Friday nights in the Hansard household are my favorite. Why? Because it’s pizza night! We have school, work, baseball practice, gymnastics, and a ton of obligations through the week, so Ryan and I decided to set aside a night for our little family to unwind and reconnect… and what better way than with pizza?!

Plant Based Pizza Recipe

Traditional homemade pizza takes a bit of time and patience, as does my recipe. So read through the instructions before you make it, and give yourself time to really enjoy this delicious plant based take on a Friday night classic:

  1. Drain the pre-soaked quinoa in a fine-mesh sieve and rinse. Transfer to a high-powered blender and add 1⁄4 cup water, the seasoning, salt, and garlic. Puree, adding more water if needed, to make a very smooth batter.
  2. Place a 12-inch cast-iron skillet or a rimmed pizza pan in the oven for 5 minutes. Add the avocado oil, return the pan to the oven, and heat for 5 minutes. Carefully remove the hot pan, and tilt it so the oil covers the bottom evenly. Carefully pour the batter into the center of the pan—don’t pour too quickly or the oil could splatter. Spread the batter evenly. It should be 1⁄4 to 1⁄2 inch thick, depending on the pan. (If using a pizza pan, it may not reach all the way to the edges.)
  3. Bake for 15 minutes, or until the top becomes somewhat dry and the edges golden. Carefully slide a large spatula under the crust to loosen it, then slowly flip it over, being careful not to splash any hot oil. Return to the oven and bake for 10 minutes.
  4. FOR TOPPINGS: Carefully transfer the crust to a rack. Blot off the oil. Remove excess oil from the skillet or pan, leaving just enough to coat the bottom. Place the crust back in the pan and spread the pesto over the crust, then top evenly with the fennel and onion. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes to warm the toppings through.
  5. Toss the arugula with the olive oil, salt, and pepper. Add to the top of the pizza, cut into wedges, and serve immediately.

Gluten-Free Crust

The crust for this pizza recipe is not your typical gluten-free crust. No gluten-free flour or yeast. It’s literally quinoa, water and seasoning. And yet it’s got a dense texture that is crispy on the outside, doughy on the inside. It has weight like regular pizza crust and is quite filling!

If you’ve got a fav pizza seasoning, use it in this plant based pizza crust! You can also make this crust ahead of time and freeze. Thaw than add toppings before the last cook time when you’re ready to use it.

Ingredients to make a vegan pizza

Pizza FAQs

How healthy is plant based pizza?

As healthy as you make it :-). But for real, you can add all the fake cheese + meat you want, yet most products have additives and weird ingredients. My savory plant based pizza recipe is filling and flavorful yet 100% plants and all natural.

Can pizza be plant based?

Easily! Basically just take off the meat + cheese and you’ve got a vegan pizza. Yet I take it a step further with my gluten free crust that uses quinoa as the base.

Is vegan pizza good?

Umm… yes! Honestly, I’m a bit of a pizza snob. So when I set out to create my own plant based recipe without gluten or dairy, it had to be delicious for me to choose it over the traditional stuff. This pizza recipe is flavorful and has the texture I want in a pizza. If dairy doesn’t both you, then toss it on! Yet if you want a vegan version, this savory one def hits the spot.

Can You Eat Pizza on a Plant-Based Diet?

Since doing my first 21-day plant-based cleanse, I know my body feels best when I just eat plants. Our kids will always choose a traditional NY style cheese pizza from our local pizza shop, Padula’s. Yet I know how I’m gonna feel when I eat that so I’ve started making my own personal-size plant based pizza for my husband and me to enjoy too. Now, I can enjoy one of my favorite meals without feeling bloated and icky. Ya feel me?!

Plant-Based Pizza recipe with quinoa crust

Easy Recipes Using Plants

Add one of these recipes to your meal rotation next week. You might be surprised at how easy a vegetarian dinner is… and none of these are leafy salads!

Potato curry

Vegetable noodle soup

Stuffed portobello mushrooms

Vegan potato salad

Tomato soup

Thai-inspired lettuce wraps

Coconut bacon BLT

Bean and rice burrito

Coconut Sriracha veggie bowl

I want my food filling and tasty; I don’t have time for bland and empty calories. These recipes help me get in more plants each day while also allowing me to enjoy my meals. I can’t wait for you to try this plant based pizza recipe; don’t forget to let me know how it turns out!

Savory Plant-Based Pizza

A simple quinoa batter makes for a crispy-edged, tender, gluten-free pizza crust that takes almost no effort to make. These toppings are some of my favorites—especially the pesto— but feel free to top with whatever your heart (or tummy) desires.
5 from 6 votes
PRINT RATE IT Print Recipe
Course: Entree
Cuisine: Plant-Based
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 2
Author: Jen Hansard

Ingredients

For Crust

  • 1.5 cups quinoa - soaked overnight in 6 cups water
  • 2 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 clove garlic - finely minced
  • 1/4 cup olive oil - extra virgin

For Toppings

  • 1/2 cup pesto - store bought or homemade
  • 1/2 cup fennel bulb - very thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup red onion - thinly sliced
  • 1 cup baby arugula
  • 1 tsp olive oil - extra virgin
  • sea salt
  • black pepper

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 450°F.

Crust

  • Drain the pre-soaked quinoa in a fine-mesh sieve and rinse. Transfer to a high-powered blender and add 1⁄4 cup water, the seasoning, salt, and garlic. Puree, adding more water if needed, to make a very smooth batter.
  • Place a 12-inch cast-iron skillet or a rimmed pizza pan in the oven for 5 minutes. Add the avocado oil, return the pan to the oven, and heat for 5 minutes. Carefully remove the hot pan, and tilt it so the oil covers the bottom evenly. Carefully pour the batter into the center of the pan—don’t pour too quickly or the oil could splatter. Spread the batter evenly. It should be 1⁄4 to 1⁄2 inch thick, depending on the pan. (If using a pizza pan, it may not reach all the way to the edges.)
  • Bake for 15 minutes, or until the top becomes somewhat dry and the edges golden. Carefully slide a large spatula under the crust to loosen it, then slowly flip it over, being careful not to splash any hot oil. Return to the oven and bake for 10 minutes.

Toppings

  • Carefully transfer the crust to a rack. Blot off the oil. Remove excess oil from the skillet or pan, leaving just enough to coat the bottom. Place the crust back in the pan and spread the pesto over the crust, then top evenly with the fennel and onion. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes to warm the toppings through.
  • Toss the arugula with the olive oil, salt, and pepper. Add to the top of the pizza, cut into wedges, and serve immediately.

Notes

  • Swap avocado oil with olive oil, just be careful not to burn it from the high heat
  • Soaking in the quinoa overnight will create the crust texture you want, so don’t skip this step
  • Use whichever toppings you prefer, though the ones I recommend are quite tasty!
  • Use vegan pesto to keep this recipe vegan

Nutrition

Calories: 855kcal | Carbohydrates: 89g | Protein: 20g | Fat: 48g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 10g | Monounsaturated Fat: 30g | Sodium: 1235mg | Potassium: 959mg | Fiber: 11g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 952IU | Vitamin C: 9mg | Calcium: 153mg | Iron: 8mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @simplegreensmoothies or tag #simplegreensmoothies!
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Ratings & Comments

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23
  1. Sandie says:

    5 stars
    Jen, I have followed you from the very beginning. Bought your first Smoothies book and have been hooked ever since. Love the growth and changes as well as the fresh start cleanses every year! So KEEP IT UP GIRL! Once again your recipe is a wonderful and you don’t disappoint, the topping options are endless. We use spicy hummus instead of the pesto and it is great! Thanks again for sharing your life with all of us and for me, making switching from vegetarian to fully plant-based to easy and tasty!

  2. Katie Ricketts says:

    5 stars
    I love this crust!!

  3. Eva says:

    5 stars
    Loved this! I only had tricolor quinoa so mine turned out looking a bit darker, but fantastic flavor with the Italian spices added. Pesto from Trader Joe’s and I used sliced zucchini with the red onion and added some pine nuts as I didn’t have fennel, but next time I’ll do that as I love fennel. This will be a go to pizza for the family!

  4. Stacey says:

    5 stars
    This crust is awesome!! I used different toppings, but I followed the crust recipe as written and it came out great! I soaked the quinoa all day, until I was ready to make the crust. I can’t wait to make it again!

    • SGS Rawkstar Jess says:

      That’s great, Stacey! Sounds like you found a great new go-to recipe. 🙂

  5. Fiona says:

    Has anyone actually made this without soaking the quinoa overnight? I want to try this tonight but forgot to soak last night will a couple of hours be enough?

    • Jen Hansard says:

      Hey Fiona! I am so glad you’re all about this!!! You can make this without soaking, though the soaking does help it blend and stick better. Just blend the dry quinoa then add the water and other ingredients. I would just make sure to let it stand for a few minutes so the quinoa “flour” can hydrate.

  6. Amy says:

    Just made this for dinner. It was delicious. I used some different toppings due to what I had in the house, but the crust was very nice.

    • Jen Hansard says:

      Yeah!!! So glad to hear you liked the crust! It’s one of those that you can change up with different toppings- so I love hearing that’s exactly what you did. Have a great weekend!

  7. Lis says:

    Is there a way to make this without soaking the quinoa for that long? Can I cook it instead? Asking for when I don’t have 6 hours…

    • Lindsey says:

      Hi Lis! You can make this without soaking, though the soaking does help. Just blend the dry quinoa then add the water and other ingredients. Let it stand for a few minutes so the quinoa “flour” can hydrate. Then you’ll be all set! -Lindsey (SGS photographer + recipe developer)

  8. Juliet T. Gilbert says:

    Thank you for sharing this recipe! I can’t wait to make it! I enjoy pizza but I know I will enjoy and feel much better with this special recipe from now on!

  9. Dani Mitchell says:

    5 stars
    I’ve done the 21-Day Cleanse and LOVED this recipe– I think it tastes better than normal pizza. (And I definitely feel better than when I eat normal pizza). The quinoa crust was a bit strange to make the first time, but trust the process. It does work. I suggest making extra crust so you can make it again that week or next (I freeze it).

  10. Shelley says:

    Can you make this without the oil?

    • SGS Rawkstar Jess says:

      I believe the oil is necessary so the crust doesn’t stick to the skillet or pan.

  11. Julie Gramoll says:

    I was wondering is it the cheese that makes you feel bloated or the gluten?

  12. SGS Rawkstar Erin says:

    5 stars
    This crust is a family favorite… and now may be on the menu for tomorrow night 🙂

    • SGS Rawkstar Jess says:

      I hear so many rave reviews about this crust, it’s on my menu planner for next week!

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About Jen Hansard

Mom of 2, ran across the Grand Canyon and lover of smoothies, coffee & tacos. I transformed my family's health with a realistic plant-based diet. I also found myself again along the way.

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