How To Use Zucchini As A Gluten-Free Alternative To Traditional Pizza Crust

It's no secret pizza is well-loved. Americans voted it their #1 food in 2023, according to The Harris Poll. Even so, 91% of folks surveyed reported that a bad crust can absolutely ruin the vibe when it comes to their pizza experience, with 80% admitting they'd be willing to pay more for better crust. And the stakes grow higher when it comes to alternative pizza crusts, where those partaking are desperate to recapture the magic of pizza night without the digestive disruption. Whether you're celiac, gluten-intolerant, Keto, or just looking for a new twist on an old fave — the best gluten-free alternative to traditional pizza crust is one that contains little to no flour. And while cauliflower veggie crust has seen its trendiness rise and fall in popularity, there's another contender in the produce aisle worthy of your pizza affection: zucchini.

This easy-to-use, high-fiber fruit makes the perfect companion for pizza's lush tomato and cheese toppings. Not only is zucchini great as a pizza topper and when made into lengthy thin-sliced lasagna or spiralized zoodles drenched in marinara and parmesan, it's equally delish as pizza bites (coin-shaped slices of zucchini covered with all your requisite toppers) or stuffed boats (cut in half, scooped, and filled with Italian sausage or pepperoni, sauce, and cheese — pure heaven!) If floppy NYC-style crust is your jam though, look no further than the verdant strings of grated zucchini shreds to make your gluten-free pizza dreams comes true.

How to make pizza crust from zucchini

Making any grain-free pizza crust from produce is more about technique than which fibrous vegetable (or fruit) you choose. You can make a tasty alternative crust using the same base ingredients (egg, cheese, and a pinch of starch) plus cauliflower, broccoli, kale, or even carrots. It's the technique that will make or break your gluten-free bake every time. The most important rule for a great outcome — control the moisture. Produce comes with one juicy problem, cooking releases moisture, resulting in a soggy crust. A few simple steps can save the sog and yield a deliciously thin, foldable, crust.

Grate or shred your vegetation, do not puree (too much moisture ruins the fibrous strength inevitably holding your gooey cheese crust together). Squeeze raw zucchini shreds in a thin towel or cheese cloth before laying them out to dry while prepping the remaining ingredients. Do not precook produce (too much moisture). If it's still too wet after mixing it all together, add 1 to 2 tablespoons of tapioca, potato, or corn starch to give you that lightly sticky (not watery or crumbly) consistency. Press out your zucchini crust on a parchment-covered pan before baking at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 12 minutes. Once baked, add your favorite toppings then, pop it back in the oven for 5 more minutes. Let the crust rest for a few minutes to set before slicing. Lastly, do not attempt thicker crust styles using this method, as too thick equals too wet.