I haven’t had a pizza with “real” cheese on it in over four years. Hard to believe that that much time has passed since I made the jump to plant-based foods, but I am so happy that I did. Plus, with this loaded veggie pizza I don’t miss the “regular” stuff even a little bit.
Now, I usually have bulk pizza dough in the freezer. I make it in large backs and seal it in individual zip top baggies. This is usually enough to make two or four dough balls, depending on how in the mood for pizza I am and how much I multiply the recipe.
But lately, out in the world, there has been a teensy problem: WHERE IS THE YEAST?
Yeast is now the toilet paper of the world. You can’t get it. And when you can, it’s in extremely limited quantities. Don’t get me wrong, I’m thrilled that people are getting into their kitchens and learning about the stress-busting catharsis that comes from pounding a glob of bread dough out on the kitchen counter.
But now there is very little yeast to be had! How do I handle this? I turn to sourdough to bake my breads and any other oven-baked goodies. 99.9% of these sourdough recipes do not require any yeast at all!
Now, this sourdough pizza dough has a bit of a cheat: half a teaspoon of instant yeast.
Considering that my traditional bulk pizza dough recipe has over a TABLESPOON of yeast, I think this is a fine compromise. I will measure out half a teaspoon of refrigerated gold in the name of needling much less flour and considerably less yeast than I normally would.
One packet of yeast is 2 1/4 teaspoons of yeast. So one small yeast envelope in this case, would yield you nine of these sourdough pizza crusts. That is over two months of weekly pizza night!
This dough requires you have a healthy sourdough starter, but do not fret! This coming Tuesday I am going to introduce all of you to my sourdough starter and take you step by step through the fermenting process so you will also be able to reduce the amount of yeast you need in the kitchen.
All of this said, I am looking into fermenting a pizza dough that requires no yeast at all (King Arthur’s inspiration has only taken me so far.) I’ll keep you updated on my progress!
Loaded Veggie Pizza w/ Sourdough Pizza Crust
- Mixing Bowl
- Stand Mixer with dough hook (optional)
- Cooking Spray
- Sauté pan
- Pizza pan or baking sheet
- Cutting board
- Pizza cutter
Sourdough Pizza Crust
- 1 cup (250g) sourdough starter discard/unfed, can be straight from the refrigerator
- 1/2 cup (115g) warm water
- 2 ½ cups (300g) all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon (9g) kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon instant yeast
- 2 tablespoons olive oil extra virgin
Loaded Veggie Pizza
- olive oil for coating the sauté pan
- 1 yellow onion medium (approximately 3")
- 2 bell peppers any color
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon white pepper
- ⅓ cup red pizza sauce your choice of variety!
- 3 tablespoons nutritional yeast optional
- 3 tablespoons vegan parmesan cheese optional
- red pepper flakes optional, for garnish
To Prepare the Sourdough Pizza Crust
- Measure sourdough starter into a large mixing bowl.
- Add warm water, flour, salt, and yeast. Mix to combine.
- Begin to knead the pizza dough. If you have a stand mixer with a dough hook, knead the dough on medium-low speed (on my Kitchen Aid, this is speed 2) for 4 minutes.
- Halfway through kneading, add the olive oil to the bowl and continue to knead at the same speed for four to five more minutes, until the dough no longer sticks to the side of the bowl.
- Transfer the dough to a greased container (you can spray the mixing bowl you are already using with cooking spray or wipe with cooking oil) and cover with a damp dish towel.
- Let rise for at least four hours, or until the dough has doubled in size.
To Prepare the Vegetable Topping
- When there is thirty minutes left on your , prepare your veggies. Pour 1-2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil into your sauté pan and warm over medium heat.
- Thinly slice the onion and bell peppers (I do not worry about makng these slices perfectly even, as all of the vegetables will cook down slightly in the pan).
- Once the oil is warm, transfer veggies to the pan. Add salt and white pepper.
- Cook the onion and peppers for 8-10 minutes, until the onion is translucent and the peppers have softened.
To Assemble The Pizza
- Preheat your oven to 425°
- Remove pizza dough from your mixing bowl and stretch it onto a lightly greased pizza pan (if you do not have a pizza pan, you can use a baking sheet. The only difference is that your pizza will be rectangular instead of round!) Gently work the dough to the outer edges of the pan, esuring that there are no holes.If the dough is snapping back after you stretch it, you can leave it to rest for 10 minutes (this helps to relax the gluten strands in your dough, making it more stretchy) before continuing to stretch.
- Once stretched, drizzle red pizza sauce onto dough and spread evenly with the back of a spoon.
- If using, sprinkle nutritional yeast over the sauce.
- Gently top the pizza with cooked veggies. Distribute as evenly as you can across the dough. Don't be shy!
- Bake the pizza for 18-20 minutes, until the edges of the crust begin to turn golden brown.
- Transfer the cooked pizza from the oven to a cutting board. If your pan is sufficiently greased, it should slide off easily!
- Once cool, top with red pepper flakes and vegan parmesan cheese (if using), slice, and serve. Enjoy!
The great thing about this pizza is the customization. If you’re not a fan of peppers and onions, feel free to sauté and toss whatever vegetables you please! You could add roasted tomatoes or olives! If you’re feeling really frisky, you could also top it with some of my roasted garlic!
If you make this pizza, let me know! Post it to instagram and tag me @kettlandkale. I’d love to see your delicious customizations!