The Secret To PERFECT Cauliflower Pizza Crust

This cauliflower pizza crust is a healthy veggie-packed recipe that is naturally gluten-free and grain-free. It’s perfect for people who still want to eat their pizza, while following a low-carb or food combining diet.

best cauliflower pizza

How to Make Cauliflower Pizza

Making cauliflower pizza is straight-forward, but a little labor intensive. If you start with fresh cauliflower, you’ll need to steam it until tender. (You can skip this step by using frozen cauliflower– read further down in this post for more info.) Then, you’ll pulse it in a food processor until it’s rice-like in texture.

cauliflower rice food processor

(You can save even more time by purchasing pre-riced cauliflower, either fresh or frozen.)

Once your cauliflower is tender and “riced” you’ll need to squeeze out the moisture that cauliflower naturally contains. This is the secret to getting a dry crust that you can pick up with your hands. (I the same nut milk bag that I use to make almond milk to do this.)

cauliflower rice squeeze

Once the cauliflower “rice” is very dry, you mix it with an egg, soft goat cheese (which gives the crust a better texture than using shredded cheese), and some Italian seasonings.

cauliflower pizza dough recipe

The crust won’t be like anything else you’ve worked with before– you spread it with a spatula, and use your hands to press and shape the dough.

how to make cauliflower pizza crust low carb

Bake until the crust is dry and golden, then flip it and bake longer until the other side isn’t soggy. I use the parchment paper to make the flipping process easier. (You don’t need a second piece of parchment paper after you flip it– the baked crust won’t stick to the pan after it’s been flipped.)

flip cauliflower pizza with parchment paper

Using Frozen Cauliflower for Pizza Crust

I’ve been making this cauliflower pizza crust for years, and there are a number of ways you can make it, but the easiest method is by starting with frozen cauliflower. I buy 1-pound bags of frozen cauliflower, so that I don’t have to do any chopping, and then I thaw them in the fridge the night before I want to make my pizza.

frozen cauliflower bags

Using frozen cauliflower allows you to skip the pre-cooking of the cauliflower, and ultimately saves you time, but I’ve also included directions for starting with fresh cauliflower in the recipe below if you’d prefer to do that. You must thaw and squeeze out the liquid from the cauliflower to get a non-soggy crust.

Update: Since originally writing this post, many stores are also now carrying frozen pre-riced cauliflower, which will save you even more time, since you won’t have to break out the food processor, either.  I’ve made this crust using two 12-ounce or two 16-ounce bags of frozen cauliflower, so know that this recipe is relatively flexible with the cauliflower amount.

pizza toppings

Cauliflower Pizza Toppings

One last thing to keep in mind when making a cauliflower pizza crust is that you should try to keep the toppings minimal. Go light on the sauce, so that it doesn’t re-hydrate the crust and make it soggy, and the same goes for the cheese. (Remember, there’s already some cheese baked into the crust, too!)

How to Make Cauliflower Pizza Crust Without Cheese

If you don’t tolerate dairy well, I’ve made this crust by omitting the cheese and using an extra egg instead. The crust texture is a little “egg-ier” that way, but it still holds up. I’ve also posted a Vegan Cauliflower Pizza Crust recipe, if you need an egg-free and dairy-free option.

frozen cauliflower pizza

How to Freeze Cauliflower Pizza Crust

Because making a cauliflower pizza crust can be a bit labor-intensive, I like to double the recipe and make two large crusts (or 4 smaller crusts for individual pizzas) and freeze the extras for an easy future meal. I’ve found that this works best by baking the crusts, and then freezing them in an airtight container. That way, when you’re ready to make a pizza, you can simply place the frozen crust on a pizza sheet and bake it at 400ºF just until it’s heated through, about 10 minutes. Then add your toppings and bake for 5-10 minutes more, until the cheese is bubbling.

4.77 from 352 votes
best cauliflower pizza
The Secret To Perfect Cauliflower Pizza Crust
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
45 mins
Total Time
1 hr 5 mins
 

Here's how to make a perfect cauliflower pizza crust, for a healthy and low-carb option. Time-saving tips included!

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: cauliflower, keto, low carb, pizza
Servings: 4
Calories: 74 kcal
Author: Megan Gilmore
Ingredients
  • 2 pounds cauliflower florets , riced
  • 1 egg , beaten
  • 1/3 cup soft goat cheese (chevre)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • pinch of salt
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 400ºF. If using fresh cauliflower, fill a large pot over medium heat with an inch of water. Fit a steamer basket into the pot, then pour the raw cauliflower into the steamer basket. Bring the water to a boil and cover the pot, steaming the cauliflower until it is very tender and can be pierced with a fork.

  2. If using frozen cauliflower, be sure to thaw it completely before getting started, then continue with the following steps. 
  3. Pour the completely thawed, or freshly steamed, cauliflower into a large food processor fitted with an "S" blade. (You may have to do this in batches if you have a smaller food processor.) Process until a rice-like texture is created. If you bought frozen riced cauliflower, you can skip this step and proceed to the next one.

  4. Transfer the "rice" to a clean, thin dishtowel. Wrap up the steamed rice in the dishtowel, twist it up, then SQUEEZE all the excess moisture out! (Be careful if your cauliflower is still hot-- you may want to let it cool before handling.) A lot of extra liquid will be released, which will leave you with a nice and dry pizza crust.

  5. In a large bowl, mix up the squeezed-out rice, egg, goat cheese, and spices. (Don't be afraid to use your hands! You want it very well mixed.) It won't be like any pizza dough you've ever worked with, but don't worry-- it'll hold together!

  6. Press the dough out onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. (It's important that it's lined with parchment paper, or it will stick.) Keep the dough about 1/4" to 1/2" thick, and make the edges a little higher for a "crust" effect, if you like.

  7. Bake for 30-35 minutes at 400F, until dry and golden. Use the parchment paper to flip the crust over, and bake again until the other side is nice and dry, about 10 to 15 more minutes.

  8. Add your favorite pizza toppings to the crust, such as sauce and cheese, then return the pizza to the 400F oven. Bake an additional 5-10 minutes, just until the cheese is hot and bubbly. Slice and serve warm.

Recipe Notes

Time-Saving Tip: I recommend making a double-batch of cauliflower pizza crusts and make one for now, and save one for later. After baking the crusts, wrap up the extra pizza crust in foil, and FREEZE it for a quick "frozen pizza" to enjoy another night! All you need to do is add toppings and bake at 400F, until the cheese is hot and bubbly.

Per 1/4 of the pizza: Calories: 74, Fat: 4g, Carbohydrates: 4g, Fiber: 2g, Protein: 6g

Recipe Notes:

  • I have found that goat cheese creates the best texture with this crust, but other readers have reported using other types of cheese with success. Feel free to experiment as needed, and please report your results in the comments below so we can all benefit from your experience.

Reader Feedback: Have you tried a cauliflower pizza crust yet? If cauliflower isn’t up your alley, you should try the quinoa pizza crust in No Excuses Detox. It’s another fan favorite!

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Comments

Priscilla

This recipe sounds amazing, can’t wait to try it. Thanks to everyone for all the wonderful tips!

Helen

could u use any other cheese beside goat cheese

    Laura

    I used ricotta–yummy!

Katinka

I just tried this, and it was absolutely delicious! Can’t wait to make it again. I’m not a big fan of goat cheese, though, so I made it with Hirtenkäse (kind of a feta cheese, but made from cow’s milk). Thank you so much for this recipe, i love it!

Marlyn

Sounds amazing! Quick question, is there a way to make this recipe without eggs?

    Megan

    I haven’t had any luck finding an egg-substitute for this particular recipe yet. I’m sure a solution is out there, though, so let me know if you have any success!

Alicia

How many servings does this make?

    Megan

    This recipe made one large pizza, which I split with my husband as our main course for dinner. If you’re serving something extra on the side, you may be able to stretch it a little further!

Jessica C.

Hi Megan, Love your blog! I plan on making your pizza this weekend. Quick question. Do you recommend a clean pizza sauce or have a recipe you could share? Seems like the store bought versions are loaded with sugar.

    Megan

    I’ve been meaning to make my own marinara sauce, but haven’t gotten around to it yet! In the meantime, I love Whole Food’s 365 Organic Pasta Sauce (it has no added sugar or oil) and Paesana’s Marinara Sauce. Both are very clean and delicious!

Sue

Hi Megan,
Just wondering if after the ricing, cooking, draining, and squeezing is done can the rice be frozen? And if so how long do you think it would last in the freezer? Thanks, will be trying this tomorrow.

    Megan

    Hi Sue! If you’re planning on freezing the rice, you can actually freeze it without cooking– when it thaws, it will have a tender texture of “cooked” rice. Strain the thawed rice, like you would the cooked rice, and follow the recipe from there!

Anna Victoria

Thanks for the wonderful recipe!
Here’s my experience with it, if anyone’s interested: http://dontforgetrecipes.blogspot.com/2012/09/cauliflower-crust-pizza.html

Pat

Ok I was very skeptical of this recipe. It was just one of those recipes that was so strange I had to try it. It was really good. I din’t tell my husband or son what they were eating or of course they wouldn’t try it. They liked it too. I have been trying to cut way back on my carbs and clean up my diet. Of course a pizza doesn’t fit in with this. This was yummy and I will make it again and again. Also I have several friends with Celiac and will use this often as a crust for appetizers.

Brenda

Wow I just made this yesterday and I’m impressed! What an amazing alternative, I used goats fetta cheese as thats what i had in the fridge and turned out yummo! Looking forward to trying some other recipes. Loving the idea of freezing the rice & thawing it without having to boil it up, takes one extra step out of the process! Love it 🙂

Mary

Made it tonight and it was quick and wonderful. What is the purpose of cooking the cauliflower?

    Megan

    Cooking the cauliflower allows you to squeeze out the extra moisture contained in the raw rice. If you make the crust without cooking and straining the rice first, the resulting crust will be soggy.

Jan

This was delicious! I had a huge cauliflower and after cooking and squeezing I only had 2.5 cups of cauliflower… I used cooked brown rice to make up the difference. I topped it with mozzarella, asiago an Swiss cheeses, some roasted tomatoes and oregano. I am STUNNED at how good this was, and really filling. Fabulous recipe. Thank you, thank you!

Vivienne Muldoon

First, I can’t believe I actually made this, but it was so different that I had to. Plus the pics baby-stepped me through it. It was soooo good! I was so skeptical that I made a back up dinner for our family; but we all wished I had made two or three more of these pizzas!! I literally laughed out loud when my 9-year-old said it was the best pizza he ever had… I thought he was pulling my leg. Then I tasted, and wow! You are sooo my food-hero! We follow a low-gluten, high-greens diet, and this one is awesome!! Easy to make, this will be a staple in our home!!

Vivienne Muldoon

I forgot to mention, I did not have goat cheese for the crust, so I used greek yogurt with a tablespoon of GF flour instead. Worked great!

meg

This was absolutely delicious, thank you! Instead of the red sauce and mozzarella cheese I added a little fresh ricotta, roasted diced butternut squash and some chopped kale with a little olive oil. Loved it!

Yvonne M.

This recipe was created by : http://yourlighterside.com/recipe-the-original-cauliflower-pizza-dough-2/

Jamie also makes Cauli-“Tator” Tots and Cauli “bread”sticks

    Megan

    Yay for Jamie! She actually commented earlier on this post and shared her site with me. I’m excited to try some more cauliflower recipes!

Kara

Amazing recipe! My 6 year old scarfed it down and never questioned what he was eating like he usually does. Thank you for this great site. You made me realize good food doesn’t need grains or sugar to still taste good.

Molly Chester

Hi there,

Just making sure that you measure the cauliflower AFTER you squeeze it dry?

Thank you for the recipe!

Molly

    Megan

    Hi Molly! I just realized that the way I wrote the ingredients is confusing– the 4 cups is before cooking, and it reduces to about half that size after cooking and squeezing. Hope you enjoy it!

Marj Weir

Love this idea – I’ve never heard of it, but glad to find your website! I’ll be trying it this week. Usually I just do eggplant rounds for pizza, but not really the same.

Lou

Hi. What an amazing recipe! Also, it’s so cheap to pick up a cauliflower, rather than fairly expensive almond flour, etc.

I was wondering if anyone has tried this base simply as an alternative for bread? I think it’s going to become a staple in my diet if it tastes as good as it looks.

Thanks!

Mary Beth

Amazing!! I just finished taste testing and it was so yummy. I’ve seen other cauliflower recipes before, and they look so greasy or flat, making me skeptical. This one was not at all. It was dry enough to pick up. Out of the gate, I tried adding some of my favorite dried herbs (oregano, sage, and garlic) I think I could have eaten the crust all by itself as mock crackers at a party. Thanks for sharing!

Imalee

I’m so disappointed (and frustrated)… this did not turn out! I didn’t have ‘parchment’ paper, but I had brown paper (which I buttered generously).

Everything was going ok until the baking was finished… it looked lovely and golden brown and smelled so good but it would not release from the paper. So we had to eat the topping on the scraped-off crust (or rather, put the crumbs on top of the toppings).

Now, I have to say that it still tasted wonderful, but it was not the result I was expecting. Also have to mention that dad loved it better than anything else ‘Italian’!

I’m going to give this recipe a go again but I think I will try making it into a ‘pie’, and bake the crust in a glass pie plate (buttered and possibly even cacao powder dusted) and then put the remaining on top of the toppings (for a 2 crust pie)… do you think this will work???

Also must give you kudos for the explanation on how to ‘rice’ cauliflower.. I never understood the directions on other websites before but yours were so simple it just clicked! I will be making Stuffed Peppers one of these days and will be using that ‘rice’.

I also tried your almond butter instructions, but after 20 minutes I finally had to add a little coconut oil to the processor for it to cream – then I just had to try the fudge… Ah, visions of Almond Butter Fudge dance through my head!

Anyway, so sorry if I sound negative.. everything about the pizza was GREAT! except the baking. I have limited resources so did the best I could.

Thanks in advance for any tips you can provide
Imalee

    Megan

    Sorry to hear your crust stuck! I’ve found that parchment paper is key for preventing that– even my Silpat doesn’t work as well, and it usually prevents sticking with everything else I bake. The resulting crust is also soggier when you use anything else, which I think makes the sticking even more of a problem! So, I hope you have the opportunity to try it with some parchment paper next time.

    And I have no idea if that pie crust will work out, but please let me know if you try it! That would be AMAZING if it worked well!

Imalee

Thanks Megan for the reply, and I will definitely post the results of my experiment.

Anu

Hi,
I have a question…I liked all about the cauliflower pizza except the goat cheese which i don’t like. Can I substitute goat cheese with any other cheese??

Please help with an answer!!

Anu

Arielle

Is there a way to make a vegan version of this, or is it a lost cause?

    Megan

    I haven’t had any luck with a vegan crust yet… please let us know if you have any success!

    suzi fichman

    i am gonna try this tonite, with cashew cheese and my egg substitute will be chia seeds and water into a gel. cant wait to see!! bet it will be really really good!!

      Nathan Taylor

      Did it work? I’m extremely curious!

Charlie

I LOVEEEE this blog, and I just tried a few recipes and now I’m a lifer.

I’m a bit confused about the ‘steaming’ part. Should I just an actual steamer over top of the pot of boiling water for the rice or actually put the rice directly in the water?

Help 🙂

    Megan

    The cauliflower rice will fall right through the holes in a steamer basket, so you’re essentially just “boiling” the rice briefly, with the pot covered to contain the steam. Then strain the rice through a fine mesh strainer after cooking!

      Anna

      Question! I did not read all the posts…but what if you do not like goat cheese? Can you use a different kind of cheese?

CindyLoo

Well I thought this sheer genius perfection for pizza alternative. Unfortunately my husband saw the cauliflower on the counter and became suspicious. My teenage son however came home late and found the leftovers in the fridge which he promptly inhaled. Said he loved it. I’ll make again for me, but my husband is now onto my cauliflower ways. Lol. Thanks, very creative.

Loretta

This recipe sounds great! Is goat cheese allowed on the paleo diet?

    Megan

    I think it depends on who you ask! In my opinion, goat cheese is perfectly fine to be indulged in occasionally. 🙂

Ozlem

Awesome recipe! I made it today for my son and husband. They could not understand anything different that regular pizza and they loved it so much. I finally found a great recipe for my future pizzas. Thank you.!

Ozlem

I forgot to give 5 star!

Elizabeth Gilhuly

That’s the goat cheese I buy; It’s delicious! I’m exited to try this crust!!

Adeline

I don’t want to use goat cheese….I’d like to know what cheese is the closest to the goat cheese you use in the recipe. I read that any cheese would work –but I can’t see how a hard type grated cheese would. Can anyone give me suggestions please.
Thanks

    Megan

    Most cauliflower pizza crust recipes actually call for hard grated cheese, so it will definitely work if you’d like to use it. I adapted my recipe to use goat cheese, because it digests better than cow’s dairy.

    However, if you’d like to use a cheese with a similar texture to chevre, I’d guess maybe ricotta would work? You’ll have to let us know if you try it!

Tasha

Have you ever tried microwaving the cauliflower rice rather than boiling it? This post says NOT to add water. http://lowcarbdiets.about.com/od/lowcarbsidedishes/r/caulirice.htm
Maybe it makes straining in Step 2 easier or rids of it altogether!

Just wondering if you’ve used it as a short cut or if nuking it makes it nasty.

    Megan

    We actually got rid of our microwave, so I don’t have that option available to me. Please let us know if you have any success trying it! 🙂

Elizabeth

Hi! This looks amazing as all the prefab GF pizza crusts dont work for me as I cannot tolerate any of the binding agents (xanthum gum, etc.) I eat eggs but am dairy-free. I was wondering if doing this without cheese would work? THanks so much for this awesome website!

    Megan

    Yes, you can omit the cheese. Hope you enjoy it!

      Cathie

      I omitted the cheese and it fell apart. Tasty, though.

        Megan

        I’m sorry to hear that! I make it without the cheese all the time, so perhaps it just takes some practice to get the thickness right. I think the cheese-less version might need to be a bit thicker to hold together well. Glad it tasted good, anyway! 🙂

Amanda

I have made this twice and it has turned out awesome both times! Never thought I would like something like this, but it was great. Even my husband, who LOVES “regular” pizza more than anything liked this 🙂 I do have one question though…..you write about making extra and freezing. I have my extra sitting out ready to go, but I’m not sure if I’m suppose to put the toppings on before or after freezing. You mention both ways in above, but I wasn’t sure if one was a typo. If it can be done either way….which way do you think turns out best? Thanks in advance for your response, and thank you for the great recipe! 🙂

    Megan

    I prefer freezing just the baked crusts by themselves, then adding the toppings later, right before baking.

      Amanda

      Thank You! I’m doing that now!! 🙂

babs

Can I just use steamed cooked cauliflower and mash it?

    Megan

    I haven’t tried it that way, but I bet it would work! Just make sure you squeeze out the moisture well before mixing it with the egg and spices. Please let us know if you try it!

Keri

Thank you for this recipe. I had to modify it a little bit, (I only had 2.5 cups worth of cauliflower at home). I also didn’t have any goat cheese on hand, so I used grated parmesan cheese, and it still came out really good!!

Don

Oh man, I seem to be the only one who failed at this recipe. 🙁 After 30 minutes, the top and bottom of my crust were cooked well(almost burnt), but the middle portion was still kinda wet. The top & bottom kinda separated from the middle (showed when I was slicing the crust). I squeezed as much water as I could from the cooked cauliflower so I’m not sure what went wrong. (how dry does the cauliflower have to be?) I also found out I’m not a fan of goat cheese. Next time I might try raw cauliflower rice and a combination of yogurt cheese and parmesan.

    Megan

    Sorry to hear that, Don. The cauliflower does need to be very dry. Raw cauliflower rice works well, too, but the result is a little soggier, thanks to the extra moisture that isn’t removed. Still delicious, though, since I’m usually just making it for myself! 😉 Better luck next time!

Eileen

I am thrilled to see this recipe. My family loves pizza but what a blessing to find a recipe that is low-carb. We are not doing dairy and so I use Daiya cheese. I’m just not sure if this would work or not? Are you familiar with this type? Thanks!

    Megan

    I haven’t tried it myself, but I think a previous commenter said that it worked! Please let us know how it goes!

Misti

I was glad to look through the comments and see that someone else also ended up with a WAY smaller pizza lol I ended up making 2 batches for one crust. I, also, measured 4 cups raw and riced and mine was about half the size of yours. After I doubled it, it was DEEEELISH. Thank you so much!

Alisha

Do you have to have goat cheese in the crust, i would like to veganize the recipe. I am going to replace the egg with a flax “egg”, but i am not sure sure about the goat cheese?

    Megan

    I’ve made it many times without the goat cheese, so I know it works either way. I haven’t tried it with flax eggs, though, so be sure to let us know if you have any success!

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