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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.

A note from Nicole:

I love love love this recipe for Paleo pizza so much that I decided to create a how-to video of Becky’s recipe, which I’ve included just below. I made a few very minor changes to the method and one ingredient (instant yeast instead of active dry yeast), and I topped it with my homemade tomato sauce, pepperoni, and my new favorite recipe for meltable vegan mozzarella by Miyoko Schinner.

This crust quickly became a family favorite, and if you read the reader comments, you’ll see my family is not alone in the 💓. Of course, if you’re looking for a traditional gluten free pizza dough, we’ve got that too—including a yeast-free gluten free pizza dough that is absolutely amazing when you’re pressed for time!

First the video, then back to Becky!

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 crust 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 (or 1 3/4 teaspoons instant 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 375°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

Comments are closed.

  • Mare Masterson
    April 18, 2017 at 4:45 PM

    Closer to being able to make this. Nightshades have been reintroduced, so far successfully! In 28 days I will try to reintroduce nuts. I will definitely have to do the vegan cheese though.

  • Sharon Kilkeary
    April 17, 2017 at 8:15 PM

    Thanks Nicole. Made for dinner tonite with the instant yeast as in your notes & video. Topped with garlic olive oil, ricotta, sweet sausage , artichokes & mozzarella. Delicious!! Best GF crust yet!! I have 2 of your books & planning on ordering the rest. Appreciate all of your efforts & thanks for all of the freebie recipes. Best out there ❤️

    • Nicole Hunn
      April 18, 2017 at 8:15 AM

      Thank you so much for the kind words, Sharon! That pizza sounds amazing. And thank you for your support of the cookbooks as well. That means so much.

  • Becky Clark
    April 16, 2017 at 9:46 PM

    I also doubled the recipe tonight. I’m paleo but my husband is not. He is raving about the one with marinara sauce and other toppings. I’m not going to share the pesto one w/him. He hates pesto. This really is an incredible pizza crust. Thank you so much for sharing Becky’s recipe. I couldn’t find this on her website.

    • Nicole Hunn
      April 17, 2017 at 7:40 AM

      It’s not on her website, Becky! I hired her to create it for me. :)

  • Sharon Kilkeary
    April 14, 2017 at 10:24 PM

    Looks great but your video does not match the directions

    • Nicole Hunn
      April 16, 2017 at 9:27 AM

      Hi, Sharon, I explain in the post that I changed the method slightly. Please see the text for details.

  • Dawn
    April 11, 2017 at 8:08 PM

    Thank you so much for this recipe it looks delicious. I love your recipes and I am super excited to try them! Thanks again!

  • Shana
    April 10, 2017 at 12:18 PM

    Nicole – thank you for sharing so many amazing gluten free recipes!
    On the pizza crust I was wondering how it would if rolled out a little thinner so it’s closer to a thin crust pizza? Would it work or fall apart?

    • Nicole Hunn
      April 10, 2017 at 3:48 PM

      That’s kind of a tough one, Shana. I’ve rolled it thinner than you see in the photos and video, but if you try to roll it too thin, the dough just breaks. And it’ll burn quite quickly if it’s too thin as well. I’d stick with the slightly thicker crust!

  • Kris Angelo
    April 9, 2017 at 7:32 PM

    Hi Nicole,

    Can’t wait to try this crust, hoping that I can substitute regular sugar instead of the honey as I cannot have honey. If so, would the amount of sugar be the same as the honey, 1 tablespoon?

    Thanks!

    • Nicole Hunn
      April 10, 2017 at 9:45 AM

      I honestly don’t know, Kris. Maybe try using another liquid sweetener, like maple syrup? You’ll have to experiment!

  • Zoe
    April 9, 2017 at 12:12 PM

    So glad you are focusing on flourless recipes!

  • Jana
    April 7, 2017 at 1:49 PM

    I made this last night and WOW was it amazing!! I was skeptical at first, even though the photos made it look so good, but I doubled the recipe and made 2 12-inch pizzas (and honestly I wasn’t even all that careful about measuring and it still turned out!) and we all agreed it was the BEST non-gluten, non-grain pizza we’d ever had! I used real mozzarella and made one with organic pepperoni, sauteed mushrooms, and fresh basil, and the other with hot Italian sausage, black olives, and thinly sliced sweet white onion. This is going to be a regular around here from now on! Thank you so much for this incredible and easy recipe!! :)

    • Nicole Hunn
      April 7, 2017 at 2:34 PM

      I’m so glad, Jana! It really is such a great recipe, I just had to make that video to hopefully convince even more people to try it. So glad you loved it!!

  • Mare
    April 5, 2017 at 5:21 PM

    Unfortunately, I have yet to try this. I now have to wait until the AIP elimination phase is over and I can add back both nuts and nightshades, and hopefully cheese too. But if no cheese, I will use Nicole’s suggested recipe for meltable vegan mozzarella. I have it teed up to go as soon as I am given the green light!

    • Nicole Hunn
      April 6, 2017 at 4:02 PM

      It’ll be waiting here for you, Mare! That meltable vegan mozzarella is actually really really good. Even my girls like it, and I tried a bunch of vegan cheese recipes. Most were awful and they wouldn’t touch!

  • Mary
    April 5, 2017 at 3:21 PM

    What can be used in place of almond flour? A member of family is highly allergic to nuts and don’t want to chance a reaction. Thanks!

    • Nicole Hunn
      April 5, 2017 at 3:40 PM

      I haven’t tested this recipe with any substitutions, Mary, so I’m afraid I just don’t know. Sometimes, sunflower seed flour can be a substitute for almond flour, so maybe you can experiment with that.

  • Sherry F Larson
    April 5, 2017 at 12:22 PM

    Can this dough be frozen?

    • Nicole Hunn
      April 5, 2017 at 3:41 PM

      I never recommend freezing raw anything with yeast, but I think you could parbake it, let it cool and then freeze it. It is a bit fragile after parbaking, though. You can refrigerate the dough in a tightly sealed container for up to 2 days after making it, and let it rise slowly in the refrigerator, and then bake.

  • Kayel
    March 5, 2017 at 10:26 AM

    Hi. I’m new to gf, but I’ve done a few paleo recipes before. Do you have any recommendations for almond flower substitute or is it absolutely necessary like the tapioca flour. I am [technically] allergic to almond.

    • Nicole Hunn
      March 6, 2017 at 12:07 PM

      You can try substituting another nut flour, or even sunflower seed flour, Kayel, but I haven’t tested the recipe with any substitutions.

  • Kait
    March 4, 2017 at 9:27 PM

    Oh my gosh, this was amazing! I’m not sure we’ve EVER been able to actually PICK UP a slice of gluten free pizza. It’s thick and puffy and HOLDS TOPPINGS. Two thumbs up and two full bellies here!

  • LEC
    March 1, 2017 at 11:31 PM

    This pizza crust is delicious AND easy! Thanks. My family loved it, and I’m the only celiac. We topped it with mozzarella, pepperoni, and black olives. The ends/edge crust was SO good- browned nicely and developed great flavor. This recipe is a keeper.

    • Nicole Hunn
      March 2, 2017 at 8:13 AM

      So glad you loved this recipe, Lauren. It’s quickly become a favorite of my family (and mine!) too!

  • Meredith Frauzel
    March 1, 2017 at 7:59 PM

    This is a great recipe! Made it tonight and everyone agreed that is delicious! Thank you so much! Can’t wait to go through your flour course.

  • Karen Wilk
    March 1, 2017 at 7:44 PM

    WOW….My daughter asked if I was sure it was gluten-free! Excellent taste and texture, best GF pizza crust we’ve had from any source, and not too much time in the kitchen. Bravo!

  • Maria
    February 27, 2017 at 4:58 AM

    Have you tried it with an egg substitute? Would love to know! Looking forward to testing this recipe out

    • Nicole Hunn
      February 27, 2017 at 12:09 PM

      Hi, Maria,
      I’ve never made this recipe with an egg substitute, but since it’s only 1 egg, it should work fine. I recommend a “chia egg.”
      Let us know how it goes!

    • Becky
      April 12, 2017 at 10:02 PM

      I made this with a “flaxseed egg” for my son’s vegan girlfriend. Came out great!

    • Nicole Hunn
      April 13, 2017 at 10:02 AM

      Glad to know it worked, Becky!

  • Emilie bruno
    February 26, 2017 at 7:02 PM

    Can I make the dough ahead and freeze?

    • Nicole Hunn
      February 27, 2017 at 12:13 PM

      Hi, Emilie,
      I don’t recommend freezing unbaked yeasted dough, no. You can try shaping and parbaking it until not browned but just “set” at about 250°F, and then cooling and freezing it until you are ready to use it.

  • Marisa
    February 26, 2017 at 6:14 PM

    Do you know if the uncooked (but already risen) dough freezes well? I’m hoping to make five crusts at once, then freeze a few to use the following week. Or could I bake for the first 8 min and freeze from there?

    • Nicole Hunn
      February 27, 2017 at 12:13 PM

      Hi, Marisa,
      I don’t recommend freezing unbaked yeasted dough. You can try shaping and parbaking it until not browned but just “set” at about 250°F, and then cooling and freezing it until you are ready to use it.

  • Becca
    February 26, 2017 at 5:18 PM

    Would cassava flour also be an option rather than tapioca flour? Thanks!!

    • Nicole Hunn
      February 27, 2017 at 12:16 PM

      I’m afraid not, Becca. Cassava flour is actually very different from tapioca flour. Tapioca flour is the starch of the cassava plant. Cassava flour is the entire root, peeled, dried and ground and is very fibrous. They are not at all interchangeable.

  • Suz in Kelowna, BC
    February 24, 2017 at 6:59 PM

    Reheat the leftovers?! Bwahaha!! You’re kidding, right? Who has leftovers from 1-12″ pizza 😂 Seriously, I’d make double just to have cold puzzle for breakfast😉. Thanks, Nicole! Making it tonight!

    • Suz in Kelowna, BC
      February 24, 2017 at 7:01 PM

      Oops, PIZZA not PUZZLE (darn auto write)

  • Nancy
    February 24, 2017 at 5:58 PM

    Do you think you could use arrowroot in place of tapioca flour?

    • Nicole Hunn
      February 27, 2017 at 12:10 PM

      Hi, Nancy,
      I’m afraid there really is no effective substitute for tapioca starch, as it has stretchy qualities that nothing else really has. Sorry!

  • Katie
    February 22, 2017 at 2:55 PM

    Great recipe, Nicole! Thanks for this :) I went classic (and non-paleo) with mozzarella, tomatoes and basil. Gave it about 8 minutes with toppings, thereof two under the broiler. Awesome crust that was super easy to handle and the smell in my kitchen was heavenly.

    • February 24, 2017 at 8:02 AM

      That sounds great! I’m so happy you enjoyed it, Katie!

  • Sandie
    February 21, 2017 at 7:29 PM

    Thanks, Nicole! This was a great success! Although I do have a digital kitchen scale (Bed Bath & Beyond) and use it often, I was lazy and just measured by volume for this pizza. I used King Arthur Flour almond flour because it’s finely ground and I think it’s a great product. The crust is crunchy and chewy and just delish–this will be my go-to for pizza. I did bake the assembled pizza for an extra 6 minutes since it didn’t look done, but I did load on the toppings! Delish!

    • February 21, 2017 at 8:37 PM

      I’m so glad you enjoyed the pizza, Sandie! Would love to hear what toppings you used :).

    • Sandie
      February 21, 2017 at 9:23 PM

      I’m afraid the toppings weren’t exactly paleo! Mozz, pizza sauce, mushrooms, spinach and pepperoni. :-) Thanks for the great recipe!

    • February 24, 2017 at 8:02 AM

      Sounds delicious, though!

  • Jen
    February 21, 2017 at 2:30 PM

    What if you don’t have a kitchen scale ?

    • February 21, 2017 at 3:47 PM

      If you’d like consistently good results in your baking, Jen, you’ll need a simple digital kitchen scale. It takes up very little space and often costs less than $15. This scale costs less than $13 right now (aff link—feel free to shop around!). Approximate volume measurements are provided in the recipe, however, if you’d prefer, but your results will vary.

  • Mare Masterson
    February 20, 2017 at 11:28 AM

    Oh I really hope this tastes as good as it looks! I have been bad and have been eating grains. Good Paleo recipes, like this one (hopefully), will make it easier for me not to eat the grains. Oh, cheese is my favorite food, so I will be using real cheese on this one!

    Nicole, thanks for inviting Becky to share with us here on your blog.

    • February 21, 2017 at 1:59 PM

      I think you’ll love it, Mare. The key is that it’s a blend of almond flour and tapioca flour/starch. I’ve tried other Paleo crusts that are mostly just almond flour, and they taste, well, like flat almonds. 😳

    • February 21, 2017 at 8:39 PM

      I sometimes use real cheese, too, so no judgment here. Would love to hear what you think if you get a chance to give this crust a try!

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