I think it's apparent I'm not the healthiest of eaters. I mean... I have a blog full of chocolate recipes, and I'm fairly certain a scan of my brain would show there is an entire section devoted to thinking about carbs. That said, if I can make a healthier version of something I often will.

Recently the craze seems to be using cauliflower in recipes. Who knew cauliflower was such a versatile vegetable? I've seen cauliflower mac and cheese, cauliflower alfredo sauce, cauliflower buffalo chicken bites...you name it. Cauliflower pizza crust also seems to have been big over the past year. Being the pizza fanatic that I am, I decided I should give it a try.

Here's the thing about cauliflower pizza crust compared with regular pizza crust: it cannot possibly compare if your favorite thing about pizza is doughy, delicious crust, and you're hoping to discover the way to get that taste with only a fraction of the calories. You will be disappointed. It's a vegetable. There is nothing that is going to make it rise and magically become a delicious, carby crust. If only. But, unless I'm at a place with delicious pizza crust (i.e. Mellow Mushroom), really crust is just a vehicle for toppings. It's kind of like people who eat foods on rice cakes. Does anyone actually like plain rice cakes? I doubt it. But when you spread peanut butter on a rice cake does it become infinitely better? Absolutely.

If you like thin crust pizza anyways you'll think this crust is a great substitution. It slices just like a regular crust, and even browns and gets a slight crunch around the edges. You can also add all sorts of Italian herbs and spices. I used turkey pepperoni (which I actually really don't like), so that made it even healthier. I also added a ton of cheese because apparently I'm incapable of going too far into the healthy zone.

I would definitely recommend giving this recipe a try. I took these pictures the day I had to stay home from work because of the polar vortex (which apparently wasn't actually a polar vortex), so it doesn't look as cheesy and hot as regular pizza, but that's because it literally froze the second I walked outside to photograph it....as did my fingers while taking these pictures. Sacrifices.

I will definitely be trying some other cauliflower recipes in the future. Do any of you have any good ones? I'd love to hear some other ideas!

Cauliflower Crust Pizza
Recipe from The Lucky Penny

  • 1 head (Small Head) Cauliflower
  • ¼ cups Parmesan Cheese
  • ¼ cups Mozzarella Cheese
  • ¼ teaspoons Kosher Salt
  • ½ teaspoons Dried Basil
  • ½ teaspoons Dried Oregano
  • ½ teaspoons Garlic Powder
  • Red Pepper Flakes (optional)
  • 1 Tablespoon Almond Meal (optional)
  • 1 whole Egg

Place a pizza stone in the oven, or baking sheet if you don’t have a pizza stone. Preheat oven to 450ºF. On a cutting board, place a large piece of parchment paper and spray it with nonstick cooking oil.

Wash and thoroughly dry a small head of cauliflower. Don’t get one the size of your head unless you are planning on making 2 pizzas. Cut off the florets—you don’t need much stem, just stick with the florets. Pulse in your food processor for about 30 seconds, until you get powdery snow like cauliflower. You should end up with 2 to 3 cups cauliflower “snow”. Place the cauliflower in a microwave safe bowl and cover. Cook for 4 minutes. Dump cooked cauliflower onto a clean tea towel and allow to cool for a bit before attempting the next step.

Once cauliflower is cool enough to handle, wrap it up in the dish towel and wring the heck out of it. You want to squeeze out as much water as possible. This will ensure you get a chewy pizza like crust instead of a crumbly mess.

Dump squeezed cauliflower into a bowl. Now add Parmesan cheese, mozzarella cheese, kosher salt, dried basil (crush up the leaves even more between your fingers before adding), dried oregano (crush up the leaves even more between your fingers before adding), garlic powder (not garlic salt), and a dash of red pepper if you want. Add the egg and mix. Hands tend to work best.
Once mixed together, use your hands to form the dough into a crust on your oiled parchment paper. Pat it down thoroughly, you want it nice and tightly formed together. Don’t make it too thick or thin either.

Using a cutting board, slide the parchment paper onto your hot pizza stone or baking sheet in the oven. Bake for 8-11 minutes, until it starts to turn golden brown. Remove from oven.

Add however much sauce, cheese, and toppings you want. I’m not gonna give you measurements for this. You know how you like your pizza—so go for it! Slide parchment with topped pizza back in the hot oven and cook for another 5 to 7 minutes until the cheese is melted, bubbly, and slightly golden.
Test your patience and allow it to cool for a minute or two. Probably closer to two. Then using a pizza cutter and a spatula, serve up your delicious grain-free cauliflower crust pizza!

Breakfast is by far my favorite meal of the day. I don't know whether it's because I like breakfast foods, or I'm just hungriest in the morning, but I think about breakfast from the moment I wake up. Shoot, sometimes I even think about it before I go to sleep. I'm pretty much always pressed for time in the mornings, so during the week I keep my breakfast foods in the office fridge because the last thing I want is to skip breakfast. On the weekends when I have a bit more time, I like to up my game a bit.

The recipe my mom uses for pancakes and waffles has always been my absolute favorite. When I think of what the perfect pancake or waffle is supposed to taste like, I immediately jump to Sunday mornings growing up when the smell of fresh breakfast would fill the house. She's used this recipe for as long as I can remember, and I believe it came from the Hints from Heloise column that used to run in the paper. The secret ingredient is club soda. Club soda makes for light, fluffy, almost airy pancakes and waffles. I'll post about club soda pancakes sometime in the future, but for now I'll stick to the waffles.

I rarely order waffles because they end up being too hard on the outside or too dry in the middle. That said, with this recipe I'd eat waffles for breakfast every morning (I'm sure my waistline would love that). I just got a Belgian waffle maker, so I used this recipe with that with great results, but I honestly prefer it with a regular waffle maker because they are even lighter. It's hard to get a super light waffle in a Belgian waffle iron regardless of the recipe since they are thicker. I also only was able to get about four waffles out of the batter, whereas with a regular iron I'm sure that number jumps to eight or so. Either way, this recipe is very little effort with fantastic results. It also saves you a few calories since you're subbing out milk...which I think is really all the justification you need to dress the waffles up with whipped cream and fruit, bacon and syrup, butter, etc. Enjoy!

Club Soda Waffles
Recipe from Hints from Heloise

2 cups Bisquick or good quality baking mix
1 egg
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 1/3 cups club soda

Heat waffle iron. Combine all ingredients together with a spoon, being careful not to overmix. Pour over hot waffle iron immediately, and cook per your individual irons instructions. You need to use the batter right away, as it will go flat if you let it sit too long. You can freeze the waffles if you have more than you need.