I love pizza. In fact, I’d say it was pizza that was my Achilles’ heel when I went vegan over 20 years ago. So I want to share with you my easy vegan pizza recipe.
Or should I say that it was the cheese on the pizza that I missed when I went vegan all those years ago.
Nowadays, there are a couple of decent vegan cheeses on the market, though I’ve only had the pleasure of trying Daiya vegan cheese. I’ve also heard of Chicago Soy Dairy’s Teese, and just taking a peek through their site I see they make vegan soft serve ice cream. I want me some!
There is also Sheese made by the Bute Island company in the UK. There is also Yakso vegan cheese made by a Dutch company I believe. I’m sure there are others, but these are the only ones I know of.
So why am I talking so much about vegan cheese? Because traditionally we love our pizzas with cheese on them. And now you can enjoy vegan cheese on your easy vegan pizza recipe below.
Now in the fairness of transparency, just because I have access to vegan cheese doesn’t mean I use it all the time on my pizzas. I actually quite like my pizzas without cheese a lot of the time.
And let me give you a caveat. Because a big part of my goal here at VV is to get you eating healthy vegan foods, vegan cheese just like regular cheese is not a health product.
NONE of the vegan cheeses I’ve mentioned above should be considered a whole plant food. Some are too hight in fat and most are devoid of many minerals and vitamins and fiber. So enjoy your vegan cheese but enjoy it in moderation.
Okay, first we start with the pizza dough for our vegan pizza recipe.
Pappa Paulo’s Pizza Dough
This is an authentic Italian recipe that is over 500 hundred years old. Or so my imagination tells me 😉
2 pkgs rapid rise yeast
0.66 cups warm water – warm on the inside of your wrist
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
4 cups flour – this is a guide, you might need more or less
1 tbsp sugar
0.25 cup olive oil
another 0.66 cups of warm water
Mix the rapid rise yeast, the first 2/3 cups of warm water and the 1 tsp of sugar in a warm bowl and let the yeast activate. I.e. leave it for 5 or so minutes. It should get foamy.
In a bigger bowl mix the salt, flour (start with about 3 cups), the 1 tbsp of sugar until blended. Add the olive oil and the other 2/3 cups of warm water and mix.
Add the wet yeast mixture from the other small bowl into the bigger bowl and mix well. This is best done with a kitchen stand mixer, but can be done by hand.
This shouldn’t take long, but once it is a formed ball of dough as best it can be, take it and knead it on a floured surface for 5 or so minutes. This allows the gluten to develop for that doughy texture you want.
Put the dough into a bowl and coat evenly but thinly with olive oil and cover with a warm damp towel and let it rise to about double its size which will take anywhere from 45 minutes to an hour.
At around 30 minutes in, pre-heat your oven to 350. If using a pizza stone place the pizza stone in now to get hot.
When dough is risen take it out of the bowl press it out or roll it out into a circle.
I like to place my dough on a pizza stone for a really great crispy crust that is still moist and chewy inside. Buying a pizza stone even if you only use it once a month is worth it. It really makes the dough that much better. A pizza paddle is almost mandatory too if you’re using a stone.
Before you take your pizza stone out of the oven brush the dough with olive oil and add your favourite pizza ingredients. I like a nice rich tomato sauce, olives, artichokes, roasted tomatoes, roasted garlic and spinach. But you can use whatever you want.
Now you can place your pizza on the hot stone or on a cookie sheet and bake for 12 to 20 minutes. On the longer side if you aren’t using a stone.
This recipe makes one large pizza, around 14 or so inches depending on how thin you roll it out.