Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Gluten Free Pizza Crusts

Almost three years ago now two of our children were diagnosed with Celiac Disease. For some great info on this incredibly under diagnosed autoimmune disease, look here, or here. I am planning on putting some great additional links on the sidebar of my blog soon. Basically, a person with Celiac Disease cannot digest gluten, and even worse, their body perceives gluten as an "invader" and mounts an autoimmune response. Gluten is found in many of the most commonly used grains in America, wheat being one of the primary culprets.

After some initial panicking and feeling overwhelmed when the children received their diagnosis, I shifted into research mode and began experimenting with many gluten free (GF) grains. GF grains are almost always considerably more expensive than wheat. We have ground our own wheat for many years and I prefer that for reasons of both a financial nature and for the added health benefits of freshly ground grains. My goal in learning to cook GF was to do the same thing with GF grains. I desired to use whole grains that I could grind (in a grain mill that was designated GF) and the grains needed to be relatively inexpensive.

We have experimented a great deal and have found that the cheapest GF grains for our family here in the midwest are long grain brown rice, sorghum and buckwheat. There are many other delicious GF grains that we use sparingly (due to cost), but most of my recipes utilize the aforementioned grains.

One staple that we try to keep in the freezer here are small "personal-sized" pizza crusts. I do cook 95% of our food GF, but I still make some things with wheat like our daily sandwich bread, grilled pizza, oven-baked pizza and pizza stromboni. On the days that I make these dishes, Joshua is glad to make his very own pizza by pulling a GF crust out of the freezer, topping it as he wishes and baking. Yummy!

The girls and I made a new batch of GF pizza crusts yesterday and we took pictures of the process for you!

Gluten Free Pizza Crusts

4 1/3 c. warm water
3 Tbs. yeast
1 cup olive oil
1 cup honey
3 eggs
@ 9 cups GF flour blend* (see below)
1/4 cup flax seeds, ground
1 Tbsp salt
1 1/2 Tbsp xanathan gum

Combine the warm water, yeast, olive oil, honey, eggs and about 4 cups of the GF flour blend in a mixing bowl and blend. Let it sit to "sponge" for about 15 minutes. The yeast will react with the warm water and the whole mixture will bubble up nicely.

When the 15 minutes are up stir in the ground flax seeds (I use a small electric coffee mill~ never used for coffee beans to grind the flax seeds), salt, guar gum and additional flour blend. This will be a *very* sticky dough; not at all like a regular yeast dough.

The trick to working with this GF dough is water... we tried oil and also additional GF flour, but neither work. This is a super-sticky dough! The cookie sheets will need to be oiled or sprayed with a non-stick spray first. Using a spoon, plop a glop of dough on the cookie sheet, then wet your fingers in a small bowl of water and begin shaping and spreading the dough into a pizza shape.

Here's a picture of Abbie shaping the dough~ nice job Abbie!


Once the dough is placed on the cooke sheets we begin baking them in batches. At this point you will only be prebaking them. 350 degrees F for 10 minutes. They will be dry, but not yet browned. Once the ten minutes of baking are up, you will need to carefully remove these to cooling racks to finish cooling before freezing.


The crusts will still be pretty fragile, so you need to be careful when handling the pizzas. If you are short on cooling rack space as I am you can use clean towels also.


Once the pizzas have cooled completely I freeze them in gallon sized zipper freezer bags. It is important to place a piece of freezer paper between pizzas or they will stick together.

To bake a pizza from these crusts you do not need to defrost them first. Simply top them as desired then bake at 350 F. until lightly browned.

This recipe yields 10 8" crusts or 27 5" crusts. You see the smaller ones in the photos above.

*GF flour blend: a ratio of 3c. brown rice flour, 1c. sorgum and 1c. buckwheat flour.

I do hope that this will be helpful for someone! I have quite a few other Gf recipes that I plan to post as I am able. Stay tuned!


  1. Yea! Another thing in common! We are making gluten-free birthday cake today and gluten-free pizza on Friday. I will be glad to try your recipe!


  2. Oh I have to try this!! The pictures didn't show up for some reason but I love when they do as I'm a major visual learner. Hey I know maybe you can just scoot up here and we can gave a gluten free cooking day :-)

    Where do you get your brown rice? I'm guessing you grind it yourself?

    Would you mind emailing me the answer as I tend to forget where I left my questions :-) Thanks Susan~



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