Recipe: QUICK & EASY Cauliflower Pizza Crust {Vegetarian & Low Carb}

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Okay, so let’s just be real.

Y’all know… I’m a sugar-lover. It is my weakness. Ice cream. Chocolate candy bars. Donuts. And the like.

Salty stuff doesn’t really “tempt” me. Cheese isn’t really a big issue. And bread is a little bit of an issue but more so because it’s just the most convenient way to eat. And it seems like most people have issues with one or the other of these if not issues with all of them.

But if there is anything other than sugar that pops up on my I-just-can’t-resist-it food radar pretty frequently, it is pizza.

I could literally live on pizza, hamburgers, donuts, and chocolate ice cream.

Ya know, if it weren’t for that whole… nutrition thing.

So when I came across these in my low-carb-vegetarian searches on Pinterest, I was intrigued but, naturally, pretty dern skeptical.

I mean, pizza crust… made out of one of the worst tasting vegetables ever to hit the planet?!?!

Yeah, no thanks.

But we are reallllllllly trying to stay away from processed carbs like, ya know… pizza crust, and so I thought I’d give it a go. I was expecting (and secretly hoping for) a failure.

BUT THEY WERE FLIPPING UH. MAZ.ING.

So, without further ado…

Cauliflower Pizza Crust

  • 2 cups of “riced” cauliflower (see my how-to below)
  • 2 cups shredded cheese (mozzarella or Colby Jack)
  • 2 eggs
  • 16-20 basil leaves, cut in strips (about 1/4 cup) *optional, or you can use another herb*

Preheat: Oven to 450
Makes: Four 4″x4″ crusts (My fam plowed through these… even my two picky, picky sons so next time I’m gonna double this!)

{All my “instructional” pics are below the recipe.}

To rice cauliflower:

  1. For this recipe, cut off the cauliflower so that you have mainly the florets (the bushy part on top). Cut off about half of a head of cauliflower.
  2. Put it in a Ninja blender or food processor. (I used my Ninja in the big pitcher… worked like a boss!)
  3. I only had to run it on speed 2 in my Ninja for, like, thirty seconds! I was so pumped that it was such a quick process! It will look like… well, sorta like rice!
  4. Measure out two cups. (And I really would measure it out because I think this recipe needs to be pretty “precise”)

To make the crust:

  1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper (and I also sprayed it with a bit of non-stick).
  2. Mix the riced cauliflower, shredded cheese, eggs, and basil (omit this or pick another herb of your choice) together.
  3. Plop a big hunk (yeah, that’s an official term) on the paper and start to spread it out. I used a fork here to sorta “pat” it down and also to help square off the edges a bit.
  4. Bake for 15 minutes. I found that a bit of the cheese sorta “snuck” out, but I just used a spatula and shoved it back into the edge of the crust.

To make a pizza:

  1. It’s the same gig as a usual homemade pizza… slop some sauce on there (I always use just plain ol pasta sauce). Always try to leave a little edge so that the sauce doesn’t drip over and below your crust cause it can burn and that’s just plain ol gross.
  2. Sprinkle on some cheese.
  3. Then add toppings if you want. On ours tonight, I chopped up a large portabella mushroom that my man Mr. Chord Dice had grilled earlier for lunch… it was PERFECT on top!
  4. Bake for another ten minutes.
  5. I put mine on a cooling rack for a minute or so cause I can.not.stand. soggy stuff that sits on a plate.

Here are some pretty pics of the process! I really hope you try these and enjoy them because they were totally legit AND they looked good and fancy too!

The ingredients… they look kinda pretty!

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I just had to take a pic of my old school oven dial…

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Before going in the oven

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After the first bake!

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With the toppings! I was admittedly starting to get excited!

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The final product! Ohmygeeeeee… so good!

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Day 165: All Dressed Up

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Salad dressing.

Yep. That’s the topic of this post… salad dressing.

Which might seem like a insignificant little topic but if you think about anytime you go on a diet what is one of the things that they always regulate?

Salad dressing.

Which is a shame because most salad dressings are sooooooo gooooooood. Of course, this is coming from a girl that really only eats ranch and blue cheese dressings. But both of those are sooooooo gooooooood.

Anyway, even though the medium for this topic is salad dressing, that’s really not the main point. The main thing on my mind is: excess.

And excess is the real reason that most diets limit salad dressings. It is the real thing reason that most diets are trying to limit. And the real reason most people lose weight on a diet… not the specific foods they are eating (although that is important to a degree), but the fact that they are eating less.

Think about it:

  • Calorie Counting: the main goal here is to limit the amount one eats in a day. It works for some people because they limit the amounts they eat to stay in that range. It failed for me because I would tally how many brownies I could eat that would keep me in that range.
  • Atkins:by cutting out carbs from your diet you limit the amount of food you eat. It works for some because carbs are the foods they are “addicted” to. Worked for me once then failed me every other time because I still didn’t have the self-discipline to not eat the foods on the “no” list.
  • Weight Watchers: which is essentially calorie counting but just on a much smaller scale (no pun intended- haha!). But it also causes you to limit the amount of your daily intake. It works for some because they are limiting what they eat in a day, possibly making better food choices as well. Plus I think their groups help a lot too. It seems that most people that have success with WeightWatchers do so because of the groups. It didn’t work for me because a) I hate math and even with the calculator I had to tally all my stuff, and b) again, I had to have the motivation and self-discipline to stay within my points. Plus I did the online version… so, no groups.
  • But all three of those (and there are, of course, a zillion more) limit food choices and in doing so they limit salad dressing. Yes, see, I got back to the topic again! Ha!

    And here’s the deal. If I’m gonna eat a LEAF, then I want to put something on said LEAF to make it taste like……… well, like a not-leaf. And that stuff is called salad dressing. So I don’t want to put on something fake-tasting because then it’ll be like eating a fake-LEAF. And that is even worse!

    So I knew that salad dressings were going to be one of those things that I wouldn’t put a limit on (unless it became an issue and I started eating bowls of just ranch… which I wouldn’t have put that past me). But what I have noticed is that I eat far less salad dressing on my leaves than I used to. (And yes, I looked up the word “leaves” to make sure that was the correct plural of “leaf”.)

    I used to eat what was essentially leaf soup. A handful of salad with globs and globs of dressing. In essence I just didn’t want to taste the leaves at all. But one of the most important retrainings that is happening to me is the avoidance of gluttony. And a truck load of dressing was… gluttony. Yes, apparently, one can even gluttonize with a salad. And so recently when I ate a salad and put on my regular amount of dressing, I looked down at it and thought… not. pleasing. to. God.

    And I scraped a ton of it back into the jar.

    And the salad was awesome.

    Maybe because now I eat salad with all sorts of goodies on it: carrots, cherry tomatoes, celery, cilantro, chopped peanuts, feta cheese, bell peppers, mushrooms, and a good mix of salad. I don’t even give much room for those dern leaves anymore. Heck, I could probably leave them out entirely!

    But I think it was extra good because I scraped off all of that bitter-tasting, guilt-producing, stomach-churning gluttony. And instead sprinkled on some amazingly tasty “honor-God”.

    You should try some… it’ll change your life.

    For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, while we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good. Titus 2:11

    Day Eighty-Seven: God > Ghirardelli

    Okay, well, I can definitely say at this point that I have lost weight. And I guess I might as well admit it: I weighed myself the other day. I mean, I knew that I had lost two pants sizes and my curiosity got the best of me. And well… I have lost 25 pounds!

    I know, right?

    The last time I lost 25 pounds was in college… in 1998.

    170 had always been my “If I weight 170 then I will do whatever it takes to lose weight”. Little did I know a day would come when I would rejoice at getting down to weighing 170. But I got to 170 my freshman year of college, came home that summer and did the Atkins diet. I also worked as an intern for my church youth group which… well, leaves relatively no time to even think about eating. Those two things together (oh, and my first serious boyfriend broke up with me the first day of summer, so I was determined to get “hot” and get him back) worked to get me down to 150. Add to that going back to college to an ex-boyfriend that still didn’t want me, and I got down to 140.

    Then I kept most of it off until I met my husband in 2002 and it slowly crept up to about 190 our first year of marriage. And I never was able to shed that. Occasionally, I’d drop down into the 180s… one time getting all the way down to 180 only to promptly gain it all back within a few months (plus an extra 10 for good measure). So, this January I found myself hovering around 180-190.

    And ya know what is said… I can track my entire life through my weight… and it’s like I have said before that weight is a scary thing because I can so easily allow it to define me. And I subsequently give each of those weights a level of “happiness”:

    • 140 = ecstatically happy
    • 155 = meh, life’s okay
    • 170 = something’s wrong with me
    • 190 = I’m a loser
    • 205 = I’m worthless

    Truth be told, I was no happier or unhappy at 140 than I was at 205. I was the same person inside… and I was just as obsessed with food at 205 as I was at 140… if not more so at 140. Because having to avoid food in regular circumstances causes just as much obsession as it does when you can eat whatever you want.

    But now, I am not the same person. Not the same person that I was at 140… not the same person that I was at 205. I’m not the same person not because of my physical body change but because of the change inside of me. Because I have rediscovered (or perhaps really truly discovered for the first time) an obsession entirely separate from food. And He is far more fulfilling than any piece of chocolate.

    Even Ghirardelli.

    Your word is so pleasing to my taste buds— it’s sweeter than honey in my mouth! Psalm 119:103

    Day Eight: Imma Be

    Before we get started, my title is from a Black Eyed Peas song called Imma Be which translated into real English is “I’m Gonna Be”.

    Now, down to business. Week one is over. I stuck with my covenant. I lost 5 pounds. And now I’m starting to feel that excitement… that hope of being skinny. Pretty. Sexy.

    Yeah. I said it. Sexy. Cause deep in my heart I want to be sexy. It’s left over from years in junior high and high school where I wasn’t sexy and all the “cool” girls were. I know that now I don’t really want to be sexy but it’s still left in there.
    And now a little January history: I lost about 40 pounds between my Freshmen and Sophomore years of college doing the Atkins diet. Only diet that has ever worked for me (probably because sugar becomes the enemy… sugar IS my enemy). Anyway, I immediately went into junior high girl mode trying to catch up on all those boys I had missed out on annnnnnd dressing on the edge of inappropriate.

    Now, everyone ignored that in a college girl, but in a 33 year old mom of two boys. Nope- that would not go ignored. Nor do I want to be that girl anymore.

    So, I have to decide who “Imma Be”. And so I’m gonna be stalking ladies at church trying to “choose” my look. I’m not going to shop where teens shop. Imma be a lady. Imma be classy. Imma be a woman that would make my Covenant God proud.

    Imma be.