Basil, Tomato & Goat Cheese Pizza with a Cauliflower-Mozzarella Crust [Gluten-Free]

Basil, Tomato & Goat Cheese Pizza with a Cauliflower-Mozzarella Crust


The title is a bit long-winded; hopefully you didn’t miss the part about the cauliflower crust. Cauliflower, you say?

I do say, and all my husband could say was “mmm” and “this is my favorite way to eat cauliflower.” (He’s not a fan of the white stuff.) He gave it a 9 out of 10, which is sayin’ something around here.

I discovered the recipe on, who discovered it on, who discovered it on a low-carb message board posted by the original recipe developer, Jamie VanEaton of Your Lighter Side.  Jamie has done some amazing things with vegetables as low-carb mainstays; this is just one of her brilliant ideas.

Brilliant, because it works. Really.

The crust does not have the classic pull or chewy texture of regular dough crust; it is more delicate and soft with a crisp edge and quite flavorful. Since mozzarella cheese is a sizable part of the crust ingredients, as the crust browns the flavor of browned cheese is pronounced. If you’re like me, that’s a good thing. (I love the crisp cheese at the edges of nachos and pizza so much I am always sure to spill a little for those choice tidbits.) We enjoyed this pizza so much we had it twice last week, inviting a friend over for lunch and she loved it too.

Super Bowl eats?  Of course, everybody loves pizza!  I wouldn’t consider it finger food—you will want to serve it with a plate and fork since the crust is so tender.  Basil, tomato, goat cheese, and sautéed mushrooms is my personal favorite, but like any pizza, you can customize the toppings to suit your preference. The process may feel a little funky baking the crust before adding the toppings, but the results are absolutely delicious.

It is a perfect crust for gluten-free and grain-free folks as well, so if you know someone who has been missing pizza because they can’t eat the crust, pass this along, they will love you for it.  Better yet, make it and invite them over—food always tastes better when shared.

Adapted from Original Cauliflower Crust Pizza Recipe, used with permission.

Basil, Tomato & Goat Cheese Pizza with a Cauliflower-Mozzarella Crust [Gluten-Free]
Serves / Yields: 1 - 9 inch - 11 inch pizza (size will vary)
For the crust:
  • 2 cups cauliflower -- grated
  • 2 whole eggs -- lightly beaten
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese -- grated
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon garlic (about 1 large clove) -- minced
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • olive oil
For the toppings:
  • pizza sauce -- any favorite
  • mozzarella cheese (about half a cup)
  • sautéed mushrooms with sliced garlic cloves
  • goat cheese -- crumbled or in small dollops
  • grape tomatoes -- sliced
  • basil -- whole fresh leaves
  • Pecorino Romano -- shredded (for the finishing touch)
  • olive oil -- drizzled on top
  1. Preheat oven to 450° and position rack in the lower third of the oven.
  2. Using a box grater, shred fresh cauliflower until you have 2 cups. Spread cauliflower in the bottom of a dry cast iron skillet and cook on medium heat for 6-8 minutes, stirring frequently, as cauliflower moisture evaporates. Cauliflower will lightly roast, but that is okay.
  3. Pour cauliflower out of skillet onto paper towels and let cool. Once cooled, squeeze any additional moisture out of the cauliflower within the paper towels.
  4. Mix cooled cauliflower, cheese, oregano, garlic, and salt until blended. Stir in egg until all ingredients are combined.
  5. Lightly brush olive oil on a non-stick pizza pan or line other types of pizza pans with parchment paper. Press crust mix out on pan to form a 9"-11" crust. Size can vary.
  6. Place crust in the oven and bake 12-15 minutes in the lower part of the oven (this will help the crust brown on the bottom), until the crust is light golden brown.
  7. Remove crust from oven, position rack in the middle, and turn oven on broil.
  8. Arrange sauce on crust and spread almost to the edge. Sprinkle a layer of mozzarella (about a quarter cup), add sautéed mushrooms and garlic, grape tomatoes, goat cheese, and basil, as desired. Sprinkle additional mozzarella on top. Finish with Romano cheese and drizzle lightly with olive oil.
  9. Return pizza to the oven and broil until toppings are hot and cheese is melted.
Notes & Suggestions
If desired, the dry cauliflower can be placed in the microwave for 7-8 minutes instead of using a skillet.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: Serves 2-3

Shared on the following Blog Hops:
Mom Trends Friday Food
The 21st Century Housewife Gallery of Favorites
Real Food Forager Fat Tuesday
The Nourishing Gourmet Pennywise Platter Thursday
Real Food Whole Health Fresh Bites Friday

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22 Responses to Basil, Tomato & Goat Cheese Pizza with a Cauliflower-Mozzarella Crust [Gluten-Free]

  1. Karen ( Back Road Journal) February 2, 2012 at 6:22 am #

    I must say that this sounds good. I am always amazed when someone comes up with such a creative recipe. Cauliflower for a crust…who would of thought.

  2. ChgoJohn February 2, 2012 at 8:28 am #

    This, Linda, sounds fantastic! Like you, I love the crunchy cheese bits from around a pizza or lasagna’s edge. Having a pizza crust with that flavor throughout would be heaven-sent! Thanks for including the link. We could not have coordinated our posts better had we planned them. :)

    • ChgoJohn February 2, 2012 at 8:29 am #

      Sorry, Judy, I need another coffee!

      • Judy February 2, 2012 at 8:47 am #

        Ha! That made me laugh. (thanks, I like laughing) I’m right there with ya, getting my second cup right now!

  3. Kathryn February 2, 2012 at 9:08 am #

    This looks pretty amazing – surprisingly so! I may make this for our Superbowl spread. (Since we’re not football fans we’re all about the food). =D

  4. Linda February 2, 2012 at 12:31 pm #

    okay, this is amazing! Really, a cauliflower crust?!! I have a head of cauliflower that’s going to be turned into pizza crust as soon as I get home!! You know its a good recipe when it gets passed on and on thru the blogging world!!

  5. Alea Milham February 3, 2012 at 1:13 pm #

    What a brilliant idea! I can’t wait to try out your pizza crust.

  6. Mary February 3, 2012 at 7:25 pm #

    Now that is a delightful mouthful both literally and figuratively. It looks wonderful and I’m sure it is delicious. Have a wonderful weekend. Blessings…Mary

  7. April @ The 21st Century Housewife February 4, 2012 at 5:53 am #

    I am so intrigued by this cauliflower crust! What a great healthy twist on traditional pizza! Your toppings look delicious too. Thank you for sharing this post with the Gallery of Favorites.

  8. Hannah February 4, 2012 at 8:06 am #

    Now that is a thing of beauty! I would have never dreamed of such a thing as a cauliflower crust, but it really is quite brilliant.

  9. Raymund February 4, 2012 at 11:55 pm #

    Wow that pizza looks so good! I dont even know if that is served in front of me whether I will slice it or not.

  10. Caroline February 6, 2012 at 1:02 pm #

    That crust recipe is so creative, Judy! And that is one gorgeous pizza. I want to take a big bite out of it right now. Wanna FedEx me a slice? 😉

    • Judy February 6, 2012 at 1:07 pm #

      Thanks Caroline, I don’t think it would be quite the same via FedEx, but if you’re ever in Colorado Springs, I’ll make one for ya! :)

  11. February 7, 2012 at 6:35 pm #

    Thanks for linking your great post to FAT TUESDAY. This looks delish! Hope to see you next week!

    Be sure to visit on Sunday for Sunday Snippets – your post from Fat Tuesday may be featured there!

  12. -h (@taste-buds) July 31, 2012 at 2:02 pm #

    Probably the most interesting pizza crust I’ve ever seen (other than the odd requests that the ninja turtles used to make back in the 80s). I will have to try this for sure, just becuase its so creative.

    -h (@taste-buds) recently posted..Strange-Brew Diaries 2.1: Beacon IPA Smoked Turkey CrostinisMy Profile

    • Judy August 1, 2012 at 7:39 am #

      It is surprising how good it is, we are hooked.

  13. Linda February 20, 2013 at 6:17 pm #

    Judy, this is so amazing because my daughter just told me about seeing a cauliflower crust for pizza and I stop by here and find it!! I can’t wait to try this out and my daughter will be visiting soon for Easter so we can make it together. I will, of course, have to test it out beforehand!! It looks really good, from the picture I would not have guessed it was made from cauliflower!
    Linda recently posted..Pumpernickel BagelsMy Profile

  14. Denise Browning@From Brazil To You April 11, 2013 at 4:05 pm #

    This pizza looks amazing! It is colorful, topped with many of my fav ingredients, and is gluten-free…Simply, perfection on a plate!!!

    • Judy Purcell April 24, 2013 at 7:58 am #

      Thanks Denise! And thanks for stopping by and taking time to comment. It was great to visit your blog, it’s always a pleasure to discover other foodies out there. Hope to see you in the comments again. :)


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