gluten free pizzas

About two million people worldwide live with intolerance to gluten – a protein found in wheat, barley and rye. For food-loving teens, the challenges of eating a gluten-free diet can be a nightmare, a.k.a. no pizza! Sarah Berghoff McClure suffers from Celiac disease (preventing her from eating gluten) so she teamed up with her chef and restaurateur mom to write a cookbook filled recipes Sarah could enjoy. Read on to learn what Sarah thinks about going gluten free and to get the recipe for a yummy gluten-free pizza.

On making the diet switch… When I was eating gluten and didn’t know that I had Celiac disease I was always exhausted even after 10 hours of sleep. I had huge purple bags underneath my eyes all the time, and I just wasn’t myself. But now that I’m not eating gluten I feel happier, healthier and stomachache free.

On how she and her mom compiled the cookbook… We chose the recipes that I missed and the recipes I knew others would miss.

Her advice for other teens on giving up gluten… DON’T WORRY—it isn’t the end of your life. You have to stay positive. Yes, at first it might be difficult, but that is completely normal. It’s a complete lifestyle change. Really get educated on what you can and can’t eat.

Gluten Free Pizza Recipe:

Pizza Sauce

1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
1 cup water
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon dried oregano

To make the pizza sauce: In a small bowl, whisk together the tomato paste, water, honey and oregano until smooth. Refrigerate, covered, until ready to use.

Pizza Crust

1 ½ cups gluten-free all-purpose flour or flour of choice with xanthan gum
in the mix
2 Tbsp. nonfat dry milk powder
2 Tbsp. finely grated parmesan cheese
1 Tbsp. sugar
1 Tbsp. dried egg whites
1 ½ tsp. bread machine or instant yeast
1 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
1 cup warm (about 110˚F) water
3 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 ½ to 2 cups shredded mozzarella, Soyrella or casein-free nondairy alternative
Toppings of choice

To make the pizza crust: Place the flour, milk powder, parmesan cheese, sugar, dried egg whites, yeast, baking powder and salt in the work bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the flat beater attachment. Mix on low. Alternatively, place the dry ingredients in a large bowl and mix on low with a sturdy handheld mixer. Add the water and olive oil and mix on low until a dough forms, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary. Increase the speed and beat for 5 minutes.
With the beater paddles still attached, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rise for one hour. If using a handheld mixer, remove and scrape down the beater blades, cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and let the dough rise for about 1 hour or until doubled in size. Mix on low to deflate.
Spray a 12-inch round pizza pan well with nonstick cooking spray. Using a silicone spatula, scrape the dough onto the pan. Spray the palms of both your hands with nonstick cooking spray, or oil your palms by rubbing them on a plate containing 2 Tbsp. of cooking oil. Using your hands, press the dough outward to fill the edges of the pan, smoothing the dough as level as possible. Let the dough rise in the pan in a warm place for 15 to 20 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 425˚.
Bake the dough for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven. For each 12-inch round pizza crust, use ¼ cup of the pizza sauce to spread over the top. Sprinkle with the cheese or nondairy alternative and other toppings of choice. Return the pizza to the oven and bake until the crust is browned around the rim, the cheese is bubbling, and the pizza is heated through, about 15 minutes. Let rest for 5 to 10 minutes. Then slide out of the pan with a spatula and cut into 8 wedges.

Variations: add 1 cup of sautéed bulk Italian sausage or 12 thin slices of pepperoni to the top of the cheese.