Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Thin Crust Pizza

I was in the kitchen indulging in some tortilla making this morning (mainly because I was craving carbs), and I was turning one of them into a quesadilla, as I finished making the others, when it occurred to me that I should be able to turn the tortillas into individual thin crust pizzas, too, albeit in a slightly thicker and bigger format, and cooked a bit longer to get a crunchy crust.

Cooked thin crust pizza

One of the tortillas succumbed to my experiment, but it wasn’t ideal as I had no pizza sauce on hand, and the crust burnt at the edges, but it showed promise; I just had to thicken the crust at the edges so it didn’t burn so easily.

I had another go this afternoon, and the resulting pizzas were sturdy enough to hold in the hand, crispy around the edge of the crust, and chewy and tasty all over. They were also really quick to make once the pizza sauce and dairy free cheese were sorted. 20 – 30 minutes start to finish for 4 pizzas. During the process, I figured that I needed to prepare all the ingredients before I started putting the pizza together, as once I got started, it all happened quickly, and I didn’t have much time for slicing veggies. Note that I put the cheese under the veggies so that it would melt more easily, and I put the veggies on the very top of the pizza so that they would cook under the broiler/grill, and not get shielded by the cheese.

Serves 4-6

  • 1 batch of amaranth, all purpose, or quinoa/bean flour dough
  • Pizza sauce (Herb and Garlic pizza sauce, Veganesca, Ratatouille, Ranchero sauce, or your favorite)
  • Dairy free cheese (home made or commercial), thinly sliced, or diced
  • Toppings (thickly sliced mushrooms, thinly sliced red onion, black olives, raw garlic slices, halved fresh baby tomatoes, pineapple chunks, soy chorizo, oil preserved sun dried tomatoes, etc.)

Heat the pizza sauce, and set to one side.

Prepare all the toppings that you’re thinking of using, and also set to one side.

Place a pizza stone about 6″ underneath a hot broiler (grill), and preheat it.

Pizza doughDivide the dough into 4 evenly sized pieces.

On a well floured cutting board or work surface, roll one of the pieces of dough into a round about 10-12″ across, and then fold the edges back over so that the edge of the crust will be thicker than the rest of the pizza (to prevent burning, and make the crust look rounder).

Heat a dry cast iron pan on the stove on medium heat until hot, and place the rolled pizza dough onto the pan, with the folded over edges facing upwards. Cook for 2-3 minutes until the bottom of the crust is very slightly browned, and then flip the crust over, smear with pizza sauce, then the cheese, then the vegetable toppings, and then scoot the pizza onto the pizza stone for about 5-7 minutes while the veggies cook, the cheese melts, and the pizza crust browns around the edges.

While that pizza cooks under the broiler/grill, roll out the next pizza base and repeat the process.


Amaranth Tortillas

Recipe reviewed and updated Jul 8, 2013

This recipe makes a soft workable dough, and the resultant tortilla is soft and pliant, with a mild taste (not very unlike wheat flour), but not bland (like rice flour).
I actually made a variety of mixes before deciding to stick with this one. One of them used amaranth flour in place of all the flours (amaranth, cornflour, tapioca starch) to see if a more simple recipe could be used. The resultant tortillas were fine in their own right, but my husband (who tries to keep me anchored in what constitutes ‘real’ food) pointed out they were too highly flavored to be tortillas. If you decide that you have cause to use tortillas with a nutty hint (and improved nutritional value!!!), then do try these with just amaranth flour.

To shape tortillas, you can either use a tortilla press, or roll them out by hand. In either case, roll a small egg sized amount of dough in your hands to make a smooth, flattened ball, first.

If you roll the tortilla by hand, make sure that you either use plenty of additional gluten free flour to dust the work surface and rolling pin to avoid sticking, or roll the dough ball between the two sides of a freezer bag that has been slit down the sides.

If you use a tortilla press, you need to use a slit freezer bag or a folded piece of parchment paper, and because the mixture contains baking powder (unlike corn tortillas), the tortillas will cook up too thick unless you press them with 2 – 4 layers of cardboard (from a cereal package or similar) inside the press, too. Once pressed, peel one side of the bag off the tortilla, then flip it on to your hand, and peel the other side of the bag off before placing the tortilla on the hot griddle. Note that the tortilla’s taste mellows after it has had a few minutes to sit after coming off the griddle. I store mine on a plate between two pieces of kitchen paper to keep them pliant, while I finish cooking all the tortillas.

1 cup (4 oz) amaranth flour
1/2 cup (2 1/2 oz) fine ground cornflour (not starch)
1/2 cup (1  3/4 oz) tapioca starch
1 tsps xanthan gum
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp margarine or oil
3/4 cup (6 fl oz) cold water

In a mixing bowl, combine all the dry ingredients and then rub in the margarine (either by hand or using a pastry wire).

Add the water and stir with a knife, before gathering up with your hands and kneading the dough for a minute to bring it together and develop the xanthan gum.

Divide the dough into 8 – 10 equal sized pieces, and form into balls.

Using a rolling pin or a tortilla press, form the tortillas (see above for directions) which should be about 6-8″ in diameter, and 1/8″ thick.

Pre-heat an un-greased cast iron griddle or shallow, heavy based frying pan over medium heat.

Cook a tortilla on the griddle until brown spots start to appear on the bottom. Flip and cook until the second side also has brown spots. (1-3 minutes each side).

Repeat with all the balls, storing them between 2 sheets of kitchen paper (to keep them moist) until you are done.