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Authentic Paleo Pizza

Authentic Paleo Pizza
This paleo pizza crust tastes just like the real thing, but is made without gluten, grains, or dairy. It’s the perfect primal canvas for all your favorite toppings!

This Paleo pizza crust tastes just like the real thing, but is made without gluten, grains, or dairy. It’s the perfect primal canvas for all your favorite toppings!

This paleo pizza crust tastes just like the real thing, but is made without gluten, grains, or dairy. It’s the perfect primal canvas for all your favorite toppings!

Please welcome back Becky Winkler of A Calculated Whisk, who will be sharing some of her favorite Paleo recipes from time to time on the blog.

Cauliflower and other veggie-based crusts are great, but sometimes you need something a little closer to classic pizza to satisfy your cravings. This Paleo pizza dough bakes up into a gorgeous pie with just the right amount of crunch around the edges.

The middle of the pie is more chewy than crispy, but holds its own well enough to not fold under the weight of whatever toppings you choose. You’ll just need two flours to make this Paleo pizza crust, and it will fool your friends with how close it tastes to traditional pizza.

This paleo pizza crust tastes just like the real thing, but is made without gluten, grains, or dairy. It’s the perfect primal canvas for all your favorite toppings!

Almond and tapioca flours work together to mimic all-purpose flour for this recipe, and yeast gives the dough that characteristic pizza crust flavor. Instead of sugar, honey is mixed with the yeast to get the process started.

Olive oil provides a hint of richness and the egg, coupled with the tapioca flour, gives the dough plenty of elasticity so it’s easy to work with. The dough only requires one forty-five minute rise, making it a viable option for weeknight dinners.

This paleo pizza crust tastes just like the real thing, but is made without gluten, grains, or dairy. It’s the perfect primal canvas for all your favorite toppings!

Once the dough has risen, it’s easy to pat out by hand on a piece of parchment—no rolling pin necessary. Preheat a baking sheet (use the back to give the pizza more room), brush the dough with a little olive oil, and pop the in the oven.

After baking for eight minutes, the pizza is ready for its toppings. Here I used marinara sauce, pepperoni, thinly sliced red onion, and dollops of cashew ricotta. The pizza goes back into the oven for five more minutes. After that, place it under the broiler for a minute or two to further brown the crust if you’d like.

 

This paleo pizza crust tastes just like the real thing, but is made without gluten, grains, or dairy. It’s the perfect primal canvas for all your favorite toppings!

Once out of the oven, I like to add a handful of fresh basil leaves and a few grinds of black pepper before slicing and serving. Since discovering this Paleo pizza crust, I’m been making homemade pizza night a weekly tradition. Next up I’m planning to try this with Italian sausage, caramelized onions, and kale.

What’s your favorite way to top pizza?

Prep time: Cook time: Yield: 1 12-inch pizza crust

Ingredients

⅓ cup (2 2/3 fluid ounces) warm water

3 tablespoons (42 g) extra virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing

1 tablespoon (21 g) honey

2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast

1 egg (50 g, weighed out of shell) at room temperature, beaten

½ teaspoon kosher salt, plus a pinch for sprinkling

1¾ cups (210 g) tapioca starch/flour, divided, plus more for dusting

1 cup (120 g) almond flour, plus more as needed

Pizza toppings, as desired

Directions

  • In a large bowl, place the warm water, olive oil, and honey and whisk to combine well. Sprinkle the yeast on top and let it sit for about 5 minutes, until foamy. Whisk in the egg. Add the salt and 1½ cups (180 g) of the tapioca flour and whisk until a smooth, sticky batter forms. Switch to a spatula or wooden spoon and stir in the almond flour, and then stir in the remaining tapioca flour. The dough should appear shaggy.

  • Dust your hands with a little tapioca flour and press the dough into a ball, kneading it a bit to get any floury bits mixed in. If it’s too sticky to come together, add additional almond flour a tablespoons at a time. Return the ball of dough to the bowl, cover it with plastic wrap, and set it in a warm place for 45 minutes (I usually set my oven to 200°F just for a couple minutes, then turn it off. I then place the bowl of dough in the oven, which is just a little above room temperature). The dough won’t double in size, but will get noticeably bigger. Place a pizza stone or large, overturned rimmed baking sheet in the oven and preheat to 400°F.

  • Place a large sheet of parchment paper on a flat surface, and, with lightly tapioca floured hands, transfer the ball of dough to the parchment. Pat the dough out into a circle about 12 inches in diameter, pushing out toward the edges to form a puffy rim of crust. Brush the top of the dough with a little bit of olive oil and sprinkle with a pinch of sea salt.

  • Carefully transfer the parchment with the dough onto the pizza stone or sheet pan and bake for 8 minutes. Remove the dough from the oven, prick the middle of the dough in several places with a fork, and add your desired toppings. Return to the oven and for about 5 minutes more. If desired, set the oven to broil and broil the pizza for up to two minutes until browned to your liking. Remove from the oven, slice, and serve hot. Any leftovers will reheat beautifully in just a few minutes in a 400°F oven.

Becky is a food photographer, recipe developer, and cookbook author who shares creative Paleo and gluten-free recipes on her blog, A Calculated Whisk. Her first cookbook, Paleo Planet, includes internationally inspired Paleo meals, desserts, sauces, spice blends, and more. Becky enjoys searing short ribs, chopping chocolate, photographing citrus fruit, and salting desserts. She lives in Chattanooga with her fiancé and his cat.

Thank you for welcoming Becky back today!

Love,
Nicole

Bakery-Style Gluten Free Blueberry Muffins

Bakery-Style Gluten Free Blueberry Muffins
These classic gluten free blueberry muffins are crisp on the outside, soft and tender inside. So easy to make, and they taste just like they came from your favorite bakery!

These classic gluten free blueberry muffins are crisp on the outside, soft and tender inside. So easy to make, and they taste just like they came from your favorite bakery!

These classic gluten free blueberry muffins are crisp on the outside, soft and tender inside. So easy to make, and they taste just like they came from your favorite bakery!

It was January 2014, and I thought you’d probably be interested in “diet” recipes. Since I’m old enough to have experienced the full force of the 1990s, I know that “low fat” usually means high in sugar and just heavy. And anyway hello fat is delicious.

So this gluten free blueberry muffin recipe started out as a “lighter” recipe. I even gave nutrition information and everything! But the muffins were so skimpy. It wasn’t long before I started tinkering with the recipe when I made it for my family.

These classic gluten free blueberry muffins are crisp on the outside, soft and tender inside. So easy to make, and they taste just like they came from your favorite bakery!

Here are my favorite gluten free blueberry muffins as I make them today at home. Usually, they’re studded with big juicy blueberries (frozen are fine!), but sometimes I replace the lemon juice with pure vanilla extract and the berries with chocolate chips.

[P.S. I even have a trick in the recipe for keeping frozen berries from bleeding all over the batter!]

In this updated version, the basic recipe isn’t low fat and low sugar. It’s not loaded with fat and sugar, but I’ll admit that it doesn’t skimp. I have notes on how to make it low fat and low sugar, though.

But before I get to the modifications you need to make for a “light” version of this recipe, I wanted to say a few words about buttermilk. There are so many ways to add buttermilk to a recipe, but they’re simply not all created equal.

These classic gluten free blueberry muffins are crisp on the outside, soft and tender inside. So easy to make, and they taste just like they came from your favorite bakery!

The highest and best way to add buttermilk is, indeed, with actual honest-to-goodness buttermilk from the dairy case at your grocer. It’s not just sour. It’s thicker and creamier than milk that’s simply had some lemon juice added to it.

But if you’re caught without that in the house, here’s my best trick: either half plain (no flavor) yogurt (Greek style is okay, too) or sour cream + half milk. This recipe calls for 6 fluid ounces buttermilk. You can use (and I have done!) 3 fluid ounces milk + the rest of the volume with yogurt or sour cream. Just mix well.

If you’d like a dairy free buttermilk, try half plain dairy free yogurt and half unsweetened almond milk. But full disclosure, I haven’t tried that. I just think it would work.

These classic gluten free blueberry muffins are crisp on the outside, soft and tender inside. So easy to make, and they taste just like they came from your favorite bakery!

Back to the lower fat version of this muffin. You can reduce the butter quite a bit (to 3 1/2 ounces or 7 tablespoons), and still have a tender muffin just by adding 3/4 cup nonfat Greek-style yogurt. Cut the sugar back to 3/4 cup (these are large muffins, so I wouldn’t go lower than that, but you can try 1/2 cup), and replace one of the eggs with 2 egg whites.

You’ll still have a tender muffin (plenty of tenderizers in that yogurt, buttermilk and lemon juice). Plus, the blueberries themselves help keep the muffins moist. And I added a few grains of coarse sugar on top, which adds a wee bit of calories (almost nothing) but since it’s right on top and caramelizes a bit in the oven, it adds a lot of sweetness.

The result? A lightly-sweet, seriously delicious gluten free blueberry muffin (any other berry would work great, too) that doesn’t sacrifice anything and doesn’t recall the dense muffins of the 1990s.


Prep time: Cook time: Yield: 12 muffins

Ingredients

2 1/2 cups (250 g) all-purpose gluten free flour (Better Batter works well)

1 1/4 teaspoons xanthan gum (omit if your blend already contains it)

1/4 cup (36 g) cornstarch (or try arrowroot)

2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 1/4 cups (about 250 g) fresh or frozen blueberries*

10 tablespoons (140 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature**

1 cup (200 g) granulated sugar**

2 eggs (100 g, weighed out of shell), at room temperature**

3/4 cup (6 fluid ounces) low fat buttermilk, at room temperature

2 tablespoons (1 fluid ounce) freshly-squeezed lemon juice

Coarse sugar, for sprinkling (optional)

*If using frozen blueberries, do not defrost them, but do rinse them with cold water before tossing in the dry ingredients. This will help keep the color of the blueberries from bleeding into the batter during baking.

**For a “lighter” recipe that is lower in fat and sugar, in place of the butter, sugar and eggs in the amounts listed above, use the following (and leave the rest of the recipe unchanged):

  • 7 tablespoons (98 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature (in place of 10 tablespoons butter)
  • 3/4 cup (150 g) granulated sugar (in place of 1 cup (200 g))
  • 3/4 cup (170 g) Greek-style plain yogurt, at room temperature (addition)
  • 1 egg (50 g, weighed out of shell) + 2 egg whites (50 g), at room temperature (in place of 2 eggs)

Directions

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F. Grease or line a standard 12-cup muffin tin, and set it aside.

  • In a medium-size bowl, place the flour, xanthan gum, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, and salt, and whisk to combine well. Transfer 1 tablespoon of the dry ingredients to a small bowl, add the blueberries and toss to coat. Set both bowls aside.

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment (or a large bowl with a hand mixer), place the butter and sugar and beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, and beat until well-combined. Add half of the dry ingredients, then the buttermilk and lemon juice, followed by the remaining dry ingredients and beating until just combined after each addition. The batter will be quite thick. Add the blueberries and reserved dry ingredients, and gently fold the berries into the batter just until they are evenly distributed throughout.

  • Divide the batter evenly between the 12 prepared muffin wells, and smooth the tops with wet fingers. Sprinkle the top of each cup of batter lightly with the optional coarse sugar. Place in the center of the preheated oven and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center (and not in a blueberry) comes out with no more than a few moist crumbs attached (about 20 minutes). Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the muffin tin for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

  • Originally posted on the blog in 2014. Recipe modified from original the make larger muffins. “Lighter” recipe is now a traditional recipe with notes to make lower in sugar and fat. Photos all new.

Love,
Nicole

Fluffy Gluten Free Waffles

Fluffy Gluten Free Waffles
 The perfect fluffy gluten free waffles made with yogurt and just a touch of sugar, with a lightly crisp outside. The gluten free breakfast of champions!

The perfect fluffy gluten free waffles made with yogurt and just a touch of sugar, with a lightly crisp outside.

Is it pancakes all the way for you, or are waffles more your style? In my family, when I make pancakes I’m kind of a hero. But when I make waffles, my kids practically throw me a ticker tape parade. I’m thinking it’s the built-in syrup cups in waffles?

 The perfect fluffy gluten free waffles made with yogurt and just a touch of sugar, with a lightly crisp outside. The gluten free breakfast of champions!

The main difference between waffles and pancakes is in the method. When making gluten free waffles (or any waffles, for that matter), the eggs are separated and the whites are beaten separately before being folded into the rest of the batter.

I’ve been making a variation of this recipe for years, and I always take the extra few minutes to treat the eggs just right.Although the yolks beat best at room temperature, it’s easiest to separate eggs that are still cold. I recommend separating the eggs when they’re cold, then letting the yolks sit for a bit if possible.

But do beat the whites. Even dense waffles will have those lovely syrup pockets, but they won’t be crips on the outside, soft and fluffy inside. If you’re breaking out the waffle iron, let’s go all the way.

There aren’t too many ingredients in this recipe, but the plain yogurt is really important. Oh, and in my experience waffles work best with oil instead of butter, as oil is nearly pure fat and butter has a fair amount of water in it. It makes for much neater waffle-iron-cooking.

 The perfect fluffy gluten free waffles made with yogurt and just a touch of sugar, with a lightly crisp outside. The gluten free breakfast of champions!

If you’re a perfectionist, you’ll want each and every waffle to be a perfect shape. For Belgian waffles, that means the whole circle, and not a ‘cup’ missing. For square waffles, that means no rough edges.

Made with the flour blend as directed, you can spread the batter all the way to the edges of the mold without worrying that it will pour out during cooking. If you use one of my all purpose gluten free flour blends instead of the gum-free blend as specified, the batter will be much, much thicker and will expand quite a bit more during cooking.

Leave a 1/4-inch clean border around the edge of the iron. I really do recommend using the blend specified in the recipe, though. The batter is much simpler to work with, and the waffles are even fluffier.

 The perfect fluffy gluten free waffles made with yogurt and just a touch of sugar, with a lightly crisp outside. The gluten free breakfast of champions!

For the fluffiest waffles, be sure to blend the oil and egg yolks first until creamy before adding the other ingredients, and then folding in the whipped egg whites.

 The perfect fluffy gluten free waffles made with yogurt and just a touch of sugar, with a lightly crisp outside. The gluten free breakfast of champions!

I’ve tried many, many waffle makers over the years, and I’ve finally settled on two favorites.

For Belgian waffles, I’m partial to the Presto Flipside Waffle Maker (aff. link). It cooks very evenly and as long as there’s a light coating of oil, the waffles never stick. And the price is very fair.

For traditional square waffles, I absolutely love the waffle maker I bought years ago at Kohl’s, but I’m sorry to say that they don’t sell it any longer! It’s The Food Network brand, and I’ve loved everything I’ve ever bought under that label. There are recommendations in the links below. And if you have a favorite square waffle maker, please tell us about it in the comments!

Links:
Waffle Maker Recommendations from Consumer Reports
Waffle Iron Recommendations from the Willitwaffle guy

Prep time: Cook time: Yield: 8 square or 4 Belgian waffles

Ingredients

2 cups (280 g) gum-free gluten free flour blend (185 g superfine white rice flour + 62 g potato starch + 33 g tapioca starch/flour)

1/4 teaspoon xanthan gum

2 tablespoons (24 g) sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

2 eggs (120 g, out of shell) at room temperature, separated

3 tablespoons (42 g) virgin coconut oil, melted and cooled (or a neutral liquid oil, like vegetable or canola)

1 cup (227 grams) plain whole milk yogurt

6 fluid ounces milk, at room temperature

Directions

  • Preheat and prepare your waffle iron according to the manufacturer’s directions.

  • In a large bowl, place the flour blend, xanthan gum, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt, and whisk to combine well. In a separate bowl, whip the egg whites with a hand mixer (or in a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment) until stiff (but not dry) peaks form. Place the egg yolks and oil in a separate large bowl and blend with a hand mixer (or in a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment) until creamy. Add the yogurt and milk, and blend until well combined. Add the dry ingredients, and blend again. The mixture will be smooth and thickly pourable. Fold the beaten egg whites gently into the large bowl of batter until only a few white streaks remain.

  • Pour or scoop about 3/4 to 1 cup of batter into your prepared waffle iron (more or less depending upon the size and shape of your iron), and spread the batter into an even layer. Close the lid and cook until steam stop escaping from the waffle iron, between 4 and 5 minutes, depending again upon the capacity of your waffle iron. Remove the waffle from the iron and serve immediately. Repeat with the remaining batter.

  • If you do not serve each waffle as soon as it is made, refresh the waffles by placing them in a toaster oven at 400°F for about 3 minutes. Waffles can also be cooled completely, wrapped tightly and frozen, then defrosted and refreshed in a similar manner before serving.

  • First published on the blog in 2013. Recipe updated slightly (recommended flour blend modified), photos replaced, video added 2017. 

Love,
Nicole

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