Gluten-Free Quinoa Pizza Crust and Vegan Pizza

Today I’m going to share with you one of my absolute FAVORITE recipes! I’m so excited I could burst!


There was a time before I had completely committed to cutting out dairy and gluten when I was unsure if I would ever be able to go through with it. I did drink milk occasionally, but it was cheese that I knew I would miss the most. I had a serious love affair with any and all cheeses. I also had a major carb addiction. But by constantly thinking about how much I would miss cheese and bread, I began to crave them more–why do we want the things we know we can’t have?

While out to dinner with my husband one night I decided to order a pizza that was piled high with different cheeses. That pizza was amazing, but about an hour later, I experienced such pain that it almost brought me to tears. I was curled up in a ball on my bed and unable to stretch myself out without feeling an immense stabbing pain in my abdomen. That was it. That was enough to convince me that I had to say good-bye to dairy and gluten for good. I don’t know what hurt more at that moment, my belly or knowing what I had to do.

Flash forward a year and I absolutely know that eliminating dairy and gluten from my diet was the right decision. It took a while for me to get to the point where I could watch other people eating pizza and not feel an overwhelming desire to snatch their food and run away with it, but this Quinoa Pizza Crust definitely helped with that. I found the original recipe (which I tweaked a bit) while I was searching the web one day. I can’t even begin to count how many times I’ve made this pizza–or how many variations I’ve made–since that day, but I’m so happy that I stumbled across the recipe. Now, in fact, my cravings for cheese and gluten have subsided to the point that I don’t really even miss them anymore. Not to mention, I actually prefer this pizza to the traditional kind, and had I not changed my eating habits, I never would have found the Quinoa Pizza recipe!


This pizza crust is so quick and easy to make–much easier than typical yeast doughs that require hours to rise–and is extremely nutritionally dense. And as far as the toppings go, the sky’s the limit. Be as creative as you want to be. My two favorite pizzas go something like this:

Pesto Pizza Toppings:
Sundried tomatoes
Basil or spinach
Red onion
Artichoke hearts

Margarita pizza toppings:
Tomato (slices and/or sauce)
Red/white onion
Nutritional yeast
Oregano/rosemary/crushed red pepper/salt/black pepper

The Roasted Corn and Pesto Quinoa Pizza I made recently (pictured) had some of my homemade Vegan Pesto, roasted corn and tomatoes, red onion, basil, and pepper. It was so delicious that I wanted more as soon as I was done. But don’t be deceived, this little pizza is extremely filling and more than enough for one person.

Update: For additional topping options, here is a recipe for Sun-Dried Tomato Marinara and Parmesan “Cheese” (both raw and vegan).

Also, I’ve adapted the recipe slightly to make a sweet dessert version (pictured below). Here is a link for that yummy fruit pizza.


5.0 from 7 reviews

Gluten-Free Quinoa Pizza Crust and Vegan Pizza
Serves: 1 8-inch pizza. The recipe can easily be doubled to make 2.
This crust is so easy to make, tastes delicious, and is extremely healthy. Why would you ever go back to regular pizza crust again?!
  • ¾ cup quinoa, soaked for at least 8 hours, rinsed and drained
  • ¼-1/2 cup water
  • 1-2 Tbs. olive oil
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 clove garlic, sliced (optional)
  • 2 tsp. Italian seasoning (optional)
  1. Soak the quinoa in filtered water for at least 8 hours. *This step is crucial as the recipe won’t work with dry quinoa. Rinse and drain the quinoa.
  2. Add all of the ingredients except the olive oil to a food processor or a high-speed blender and combine until the dough resembles pancake batter. Adjust the water as needed.
  3. There are 2 methods for cooking the dough. In the oven: Preheat your oven to 450 degrees and coat either a cast iron skillet or an 8-inch round cake pan with the olive oil. Allow the skillet or cake pan to heat up in the oven for about 10 minutes (this is good to do while you’re preparing the dough and chopping the veggies). Remove skillet/cake pan from the oven and immediately add the quinoa “dough,” using a spatula to even it out as needed. Place the dough in the oven to bake for 20 minutes. Flip the dough and bake for another 10 minutes, or until brown and crispy.
  4. OR, On the stove: This is the method I use when I’m pressed for time. Heat a non-stick pan with the olive oil over medium heat. Pour the dough into the pan and use a spatula to even the dough out as needed. Allow to cook for approx. 5-10 minutes or until the bottom is turning brown and crispy. Flip and cook for another 5 minutes, or until evenly cooked on both sides.
  5. Now comes the fun part! Add whatever toppings you want and feel free to be creative.
  6. I like to place the pizza in the oven under the broiler after adding the toppings just to heat everything up a bit, without really cooking the veggies (raw veggies are always better!).
  7. Serve and enjoy!!

*Adapted from For Life Personal Chef

**I’m honored to share that Dr. Frank Lipman has featured my recipe for Gluten-Free Quinoa Pizza in his Gluten-Free Recipe Round-Up: Best Pinterest Recipes of 2012!! Click here to check out all of the amazing recipes included in his roundup or to browse Dr. Lipman’s site and learn more about his fascinating approach to health.

76 thoughts on “Gluten-Free Quinoa Pizza Crust and Vegan Pizza

  1. I’m always looking for new pizza crusts (love pizza!) and this one sounds incredibly easy and good! I know what my next pizza crust will be. ;-) Thanks for the recipe!

    • I CRAVE pizza often and this is the easiest recipe I’ve found, not to mention it’s so yummy and healthy (a winning trifecta)! I make this at least once every week! I hope you enjoy it as much as I do :)

  2. Lovely pizza crust recipe! I actually had a very similar experience- I cut out dairy, then in a moment of weakness splurged on a ginormous cheese pizza, only to be reduced to spending the entire evening in the fetal position because my stomach was cramping so bad. Never again. And with pizzas like these, why would I ever be tempted again ;)

    • I don’t know about you, but I’ve finally gotten to the point where I don’t miss cheese anymore!! It took a long time, but it’s not worth the pain…I make up for it by eating this pizza as often as possible :)

      • I totally agree, I don’t miss cheese either! Cheese has addicting properties that actually triggers the reward pathways in our brains, so I think you just need to get over the initial hurdle. After that, going without cheese is easy!

        And by the way, this recipe is being featured tomorrow on Healthy Vegan Friday! Make sure to check it out!

        Thanks for submitting such an awesome recipe :)

        • That initial hurdle is definitely TOUGH, but so worth it in the long-run!

          Thank you so much! I’m so excited!! I’ve had so much fun browsing the recipes that are submitted. You guys are doing such a great job and I really appreciate the opportunity to browse and submit!

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    • Thanks! I am slightly obsessed with quinoa :) More than anything, I love how easy this is to make! And you can toss in different herbs and spices to customize it :)

  6. I’m neither dairy nor gluten intolerant, but I badly want to make this! It looks so healthy and delicious! Thank you for sharing this….pinning it now!

    • My husband and step-son aren’t dairy or gluten intolerant either so I’m always trying to come up with recipes that are healthy and everyone will enjoy (not just those with restricted diets). I hope you enjoy it!!

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  8. I made this tonight and I LOVE the taste. My crust was a little crumbly. Any suggestions? I live in Denver, so maybe there was an altitude issue? Either way, I loved the taste and will definitely make it again!!

    • Hmmm….I’ve never had an issue with it crumbling, but I do agree that the higher altitude could have been the reason. Typically, foods take longer to cook and can dry out more easily in high altitudes. Also, water will boil and evaporate quicker at high altitudes. I would try adding a bit more water to the recipe and covering the crust during cooking to avoid over-drying (add a lid if you cook it on the stove or cover with tin foil for part of the cooking time if you cook it in the oven). I hope this helps! Let me know how it goes next time you make the crust!

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    • Thank you! I’m obsessed with quinoa! I try to include it in almost everything (which doesn’t always work out the way I would want it to) :)

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  11. Stunningly easy and just as stunningly delicious AND nutritious! The best, most helpful recipe I’ve encountered in a long time. Pizza without the guilt. Thank you!! It will be a regular at our house.

    • To be perfectly honest, I haven’t! I usually make two crusts so I have one for later, but I keep the extra in the fridge because it never seems to last very long :) I will definitely give this a try though and I’ll get back to you. And if you try freezing some crusts, please let me know what you think–I’d love to hear back!

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  13. Hey! I’ve soaked the quinoa overnight, but it didn’t swell at all. I rinsed it, and when I put it into my food processor alongside w/ the water, it seemed that the water + the quinoa won’t dissolve, the little grains were untouched in the water. I’ve cooked it a bit until it resembled the pancake batter.
    I put it in the stove but I couldn’t turn it unless it came in two pieces. And I can still see the quinoa grains in the dough… What did I do wrong? (I live in Hungary)

    • I’m wondering if perhaps the quinoa was stale. I always purchase quinoa in the bulk section and a few times I’ve gotten quinoa that won’t cook well and tastes a bit funny afterward. Also, the quinoa definitely needs to soak for at least 8 hours to blend up smoothly.
      I was thinking too, my beloved blender broke once and I had to blend the batter in my food processor. It took a LONG time and was never entirely smooth, and if it’s not as smooth as pancake batter, it’s more likely to crumble when cooked.
      I hope this helps! Please let me know if you try the recipe again!

    • I tried doing it for less time before (I think five or 6 hours) and had a difficult time blending the batter out so that it was nice and smooth–it was a bit runny with some whole quinoa grains that didn’t fully break down. I would suggest soaking for at least 8 hours for optimal results.

  14. Thank you for this recipe… I look forward to trying it. Have you ever made it with quinoa flour? I wonder if in a rush you could skip the soaking… plus I already have it on hand.

      • I have tried it and it worked great with the flour! I needed a bit more than a 1/2 cup of water. I baked it for 20 minutes on one side then 5 minute on the other, put toppings on and cooked it for another 5

  15. I just made this tonight (doubled the recipe for 2 pizzas) and it was fabulous! The texture was very light, like eating a thin crust pizza. This will become a staple meal for us for sure. Thanks for the recipe!

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  18. Is there a substantial difference between soaking the quinoa and just cooking it on the stove top? They look the same both ways but is there a difference with this recipe?

    • Yes ma’am, there’s a pretty big difference. To get the batter to a good, smooth texture, it’s best to use soaked and uncooked quinoa. When the whole quinoa grains cook, they absorbs the water and fluff up, so if you’re using whole cooked quinoa, it won’t cook properly when you try to create the crust.

  19. Best GF pizza crust EVER and without the carb hangover! Just the right blend of crusty/chewy. So easy to make. I added a touch of honey to take a little of bite out of the quinoa. ‘Twas wonderful!

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  21. I made this crust today. It is soft to eat (except the edges, a bit crunchy there), smells and tastes delicious. Bravo, Rachel!

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  23. This was so unbelievably incredible! I was so shocked at how awesome this turned out. I had to cook the crust on the stove as I didn’t have a cake time or skillet. Topped it with homemade tomato and basil sauce and roasted vegetables.
    Bliss! Thank you so much xx

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  29. This was absolutely delicious and super easy. Used only 1/4 t salt, 1/4 c water, 1T oil and 1 t Italian seasoning. The quinoa and garlic stayed the same. I soaked the quinoa as directed. Watch it – it may need less time to cook in oven. Flip it when it gets crusty around the edges.

    This can also be used as pita for hummus.

    I can’t thank you enough, Rachel, for such a delicious and versatile recipe.

    • I’ve never tried it (I always end up eating the crusts pretty quickly), but I don’t see any reason why it shouldn’t work! If you try, I would love to know how it works for you!

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  32. Just made this — It tastes great, but it stuck to the pan pretty badly… couldn’t use it. How do you get it to not stick to the pan?

    • The pan you use is really important–I use an All Clad non-stick and haven’t had a problem but I made this recipe once in another pan and had a problem with sticking too. It all depends on the pan.

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