Cauliflower crust has become the latest craze as a pizza base. Everywhere you turn, cooks are swapping out the carb-heavy, flour-based crust for a nutrient-rich, naturally gluten-free cauliflower mixture. There’s no need to stop the party at pizzas though. The vegetable-based crust is incredibly versatile, and can be used in all sorts of delicious applications, well beyond your typical slice.
We take the new, health-driven crust and create savoury tarts, quiches and pot pies with it. Forget about rising times and intimidating dough recipes, cauliflower crust is here to save the day, deliciously.
Classic Cauliflower Crust
Keep this master recipe on hand for all of your cauliflower crust needs.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Makes: 1 Cauliflower Crust
1 head cauliflower
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 tsp salt
1. Cut cauliflower into florets, discard tough core and pulse florets in a food processor until it resembles the size of a small grain (like rice).
2. Steam cauliflower “grain” in a steam basket or fine-mesh sieve until tender, about 5 minutes.
3. Using cheesecloth or a clean kitchen towel, ring any excess liquid out of cauliflower. Discard liquid.
4. Add rung cauliflower to a large bowl and mix in mozzarella, eggs and salt.
5. Use as directed in recipes (below).
Zucchini and Ricotta Tart with Cauliflower Crust
On a large rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper, spread 1 recipe Cauliflower Crust (recipe above) into a 1-inch-thick rectangle. Bake at 400ºF, until mixture is cooked though and beginning to turn golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from oven. Spread 1 cup ricotta cheese over baked cauliflower crust, leaving a 1-inch border around the edge. Top with thinly sliced zucchini and halved cherry tomatoes. Drizzle with a touch of olive oil and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Return tart to oven and bake until zucchini is cooked through and crust is golden brown, about 15 minutes. Remove from oven and garnish with fresh herbs of choice. Slice and serve. Serves 4.
Cauliflower Crust Muffin Tin Quiche
Grease a 6-cup muffin tin with butter or oil. Press 2 to 3 Tbsp Cauliflower Crust (recipe above) into a bowl shape, up the sides of each muffin cup, until an even layer is formed (this is the “pastry shell”). Bake at 400ºF for 15 minutes, until baked through and beginning to brown. Reserve. In a large bowl, mix to combine 2 large eggs, 1/2 cup grated cheese of choice and 1/2 cup whole milk. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Divide egg mixture among baked cauliflower crust shells. Bake for an additional 20 minutes, or until filling is puffed and cooked through. Cool for 5 minutes in pan. Remove quiches from muffin tin by running a sharp knife around edges. Garnish with fresh thyme and serve. Serves 6.
Miniature Cauliflower Crust Pot Pies
Preheat oven to 400ºF. Divide your favourite chili, pot pie or stew recipe into 6 medium ovenproof ramekins, leaving a 1-inch space at the top for crust. Add 1/4 cup Cauliflower Crust (recipe above) over each ramekin of chili, pot pie or stew. Smooth tops by gently packing the mixture down. Sprinkle crust with 1 Tbsp grated Parmesan or Cheddar. Bake until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbling, about 20 minutes. Serve warm. Serves 6.
Kick cauliflower up a notch and explore the vegetable’s crispier, spicier side with these vegan cauliflower “fish” tacos, complete with avocado crema.