Pizza....Can It Really Be Made Healthy(er)? (Gluten-free, Dairy-free option)

Yes! It can!

I refuse to think otherwise!

Before I transitioned to a whole-food, clean-eating lifestyle, I was addicted to "bread", anything made out of "dough", be it Hungarian kifli, zsemle, cookies and cakes, pastry, strudel, puff pastry, donuts....anything. When I say addicted, I do not mean I was eating it all the time, but when I craved something, it would be one of these on the list. It was my weakness. And pizza crust, the crispy, almost-burnt kind...

One would not think of this as addiction. I was never overweight, I never had an eating disorder. I just always preferred and wanted the bread. But do not be fooled.

And it is only after years of having been mostly weaned off bread that I realize how addicted I was to it.

Today, I am on a mainly grain-free, dairy free diet....When I say mainly, it is because I am not strict with it. I would say 80% of the time I am, the rest of the time I eat some form of GLUTEN-FREE grains (the occasional rice or corn chips, maybe a slice of bread once a month). And it works great for me!

But when a special occasion comes around the corner and I do "enjoy" a slice of regular cake, I immediately feel the rush of carbohydrates from the processed flour, and it floods my brain, bringing on this unstoppable sensation of craving that starts playing in my brain on repeat: "one more slice, one more slice".

It is almost surreal. But so powerful to observe and realize. Scary in a way.

The one way that I do enjoy "bread" once a month is by eating home-prepared pizza. I have found at my local health food store a gluten-free millet lavash that I use as the crust. This lavash has 8 ingredients that I recognize, no fillers and preservatives, all clean. It still is processed carbohydrates, but in the cleanest form...and the goal here is not perfection.

It is so easy to prepare on busy weeknights! I jazz it up to make it as nutritious and filling as possible, too! Here is how I make it:

Ingredients:

  • Gluten-free lavash or soft tortilla (watch for few ingredients, no fillers and preservatives, etc)

  • Extra virgin olive oil

  • Spices and/or fresh herbs: oregano, basil, garlic, sea salt

  • Organic tomato paste (1 ingredient!!!) OR pesto (dairy free or regular)

  • Toppings of choice: protein and vegetables to increase nutritional value!

  • Optional: organic cheese or dairy-free alternative or simply omit cheese

Preparation:

1) Preheat oven to 400F

2) Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place gluten-free lavash/soft tortillas on paper

3) Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt and garlic

4) Sprinkle with oregano and basil (fresh or dried)

5) Spread 1-3 tablespoons of organic tomato paste on top (or pesto, yum!)

6) Add your toppings: I used sliced red onions, chopped up leftover veggie burger, prosciutto slices, organic deli meat leftover, cooked black beans and fresh chopped spinach.

Other great options are grass-fed cooked ground meat, chicken, turkey, any vegetable, capers...

7) Optional: add cheese. I omitted this time for a dairy-free version

8) sprinkle with oregano, basil, garlic and sea salt

9) Place in oven for 5-10 minutes, until crispy

10) Serve with a side salad and enjoy!

pizza6

Stay happy and healthy,

Eva

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