Recipe: Whole Wheat Vegan Pizza

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I’m pretty proud of this melt-in-your-mouth homemade creation.

Ah, how I love pizza. It is one of the things I miss most about the Standard American Diet: a hot, cheesy, slice of deliciousness with a satisfying, carb-y crunch at the end.  I have definitely been known at my low points to succumb to late night pizza desires, preferably at Antonio’s Pizza by the Slice:

Exhibit A.

Exhibit A.

So, after getting off of work an hour and a half later than usual tonight, I wanted something for dinner that would really hit the spot. This pizza sure did the trick…I am a bit ashamed to admit I ate a whopping three slices.

The other awesome thing about homemade pizza is that it has the same all-purpose function as a great casserole: you can chop up any unused vegetables in your refrigerator before they would otherwise go to waste. Tonight, I literally took out every perishable veggie from my fridge, methodically chopped them all up, and tossed them artfully on my pie.

Even though I have recently begun to suspect that I’m slightly sensitive to gluten, I decided to bite the bullet and use up the rest of my whole-wheat, organic King Arthur’s flour in the spirit of using my unused food. (I recently bought gluten-free brown rice flour and am excited to try it in some new recipes, soon to come.)

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She is a thing of beauty.

Whole Wheat Vegan Pizza

for the dough

  • 3 1/2 cups organic, whole wheat flour (I like King Arthur’s brand)
  • 2 tbsp dry, active yeast
  • Freshly cracked sea salt
  • 1 3/4 cups warm water (not too hot–you should be able to touch it with your finger)

for the toppings
(once again, you can really use anything you want here- this is what I used today)

  • 3 chopped mushrooms
  • 1/2 chopped onion
  • 2 chopped jalapeño peppers, seeded and pitted
  • 2 roma tomatoes, sliced into thin circles
  • 1 zucchini, sliced into thin circles
  • 1 jar organic pasta sauce (make sure there is no sugar in the ingredients)
  • red pepper flakes
  • paprika
  • fresh cracked pepper
  • Daiya mozzarella-flavored “cheese” (I used half mozz+half cheddar, because I only had a little mozz left)
  • Freshly torn basil leaves
  • Extra virgin olive oil (preferably organic and cold-pressed)

dough instructions: 

  1. Preheat the oven to 250 degrees.
  2. Put the yeast and the warm water in a small bowl. Stir and let sit until dissolved.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the whole-wheat flour and salt. Press the (dried) cup measurer into the center of the flour to make a well-shaped indention.
  4. Pour the warm water and yeast mixture into the indention, and then mix the entire batter together. (I used a metal spoon at first, and then used my hands to really knead all the ingredients together.) Work the dough into a ball shape.
  5. Wash and flour your hands. Continue to add (small amounts) of flour to your hands and knead until the dough is no longer sticking to them.
  6. Wash out the bowl you used to mix the flour and water together. Lightly oil it with cold-pressed, extra virgin olive oil.
  7. Place the dough ball in the bowl and cover with something that will let the dough “breathe” (damp paper towel, tea cloth, damp cloth, etc.)
  8. Let the dough rise in a warm place for 45 min-1 hr. I usually place the bowl in my oven, but don’t actually turn the oven on.
  9. Use a rolling pin (or tumbler glass, if you’re a poor college student like me) to roll the dough out onto a lightly greased 32 inch pizza pan. Make sure you get all of the air out.
  10. Put the tin in the oven for about 10 minutes to make sure the dough will bake completely in the center. Take the pan out, and increase the oven heat to about 350 degrees.

now, for the toppings:

  1. Add the pasta sauce, and spread evenly across the dough. If you’re a sauce-lover like myself, you might use as much as a whole jar.
  2. Begin to add your toppings. I like to add the bigger stuff on the bottom: sliced tomato, sliced zucchini, etc., and work my way to the finely chopped ingredients: garlic, jalapeño, etc.
  3. Add any spices you like. I added paprika, freshly cracked pepper, and red paper flakes.
  4. Bake the pizza in the oven for about 15-20 minutes. During the last 5 minutes of baking, add the Daiya and torn basil. (Slice into the center of the pizza to make sure the dough is fully cooked before removing.)
  5. Let cool for 5 minutes, and enjoy!

I served this dish with a side of yesterday’s Crunchy Vegan Kale Chips…a perfectly light complement to this hearty meal.