Mar 16

Rustic Cauliflower Crust Calzones

Oh boy, we’re breaking out the word ‘rustic’ again.

Cauliflower Crust Calzones (4 of 6)

Or maybe I should have said ‘homestyle.’  I feel like either word infers a subtle amount of messiness.  Either could get thrown into a recipe title when the recipe tastes great, but just came out a little umm sloppier than I intended it to.  Not neat and pretty like those brightly colored macaroon cookies that seem to be popping up everywhere.  No, this is more like a plate of nachos that you dive fingers first into and then are glad no one was around to witness.

Cauliflower Crust Calzones (2 of 6)

The only problem with this recipe is that when I folded the cauliflower crust in half after baking it, some of it ripped open along the seam.  So simply decreasing the cooking time/checking on the crust in the oven more frequently should fix the cracking crust. 

Cracked or not, the crust is good.  I hadn’t tried the whole cauliflower crust thing.  I’m bad with change.  But this was a welcome change.  Plus, if you let the calzones cool a bit, they are totally sturdy enough to pick up and eat with your hands.  If they weren’t, they wouldn’t be pizza(ish)…we don’t need any of that eat-your-pizza-with-a-fork/knives here.

Cauliflower Crust Calzones (3 of 6)

Andrew couldn’t believe that these actually tasted like pizza.  Somehow while eating we managed to start this debate over what a ‘Chicago-style’ pizza really is.  Neither one of us has ever eaten pizza in Chicago so we didn’t have much ground to base our arguments on.  He said it just means the pizza crust is deep-dish.  I said it means that the pizza has to be built upside-down…you know, with the sauce on the top.  Someone from Chicago please clarify (aka tell me I’m right).

Cauliflower Crust Calzones (5 of 6)

So I’ve been meaning to make cauliflower pizza crust for as long as I’ve been meaning to make…

these Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookie Pancakes

these cute, little skinny frozen chocolate peanut butter cups

ohmygosh these homemade nutter butters

delicious looking coconut oil bananas

creamy greek yogurt mac n’ cheese

the most perfect looking California lunch bowls (i want this for like every lunch)

these crispy and creamy baked avocado fries

…I’ve wanted to make all those things for over a year.  I need to get with it.

Cauliflower Crust Calzones (6 of 6)

But for now, at least I’ve made the cauliflower pizza crust.  Next I want to make a deep dish pizza out of said crust…just need to figure out exactly what a deep dish pizza is.


I won’t be sharing my weekly meals this week since I’m on vacation and not cooking much.  But next Sunday I’ll be sharing boatloads of vacation food.  For now, we’ve got calzones. 

Rustic Cauliflower Calzone
  1. 1 head cauliflower (should get ~3 1/2 cups after ground & microwaved)
  2. 1 egg
  3. 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, grated
  4. 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  5. 1/2 teaspoon garlic
  6. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  7. 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  1. tomato sauce
  2. fresh basil leaves
  3. mozzarella (grated or sliced)
  1. In a food processor, process cauliflower florets until they are in tiny pieces (stop before they are completely might need to add the florets to your food processor in batches). Place the processed cauliflower into a large microwave-safe bowl and microwave for 8 minutes. After, scoop cooked cauliflower into a tea towel and squeeze as much excess water from it as you can. And then squeeze some more.
  2. Preheat oven to 450F. Place the dry cauliflower in a mixing bowl and add in an egg, mozzarella, oregano, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Mix until everything is incorporated together. Spread cauliflower mixture into a thin circle on an extremely well greased baking sheet. Bake for 7-10 minutes.
  3. Remove from oven and add toppings. Fold one side of the cauliflower over on top of the toppings (hopefully the crust doesn't rip along the seam...if it does, it will still be delicious. Next time just decrease the cooking time a bit before you fold it over.) Return to the oven for 15-20 minutes. Allow to cool slightly on a cooling rack (or just eat immediately). The calzones do harden up a bit the longer they sit...that way you can eat them with your hands.
Serves 2 (makes 2 calzones)
Adapted from The Iron You
Adapted from The Iron You


29 comments on “Rustic Cauliflower Crust Calzones”

  1. Love the idea of turning the crust into calzones! So many recipes, so little time, right? Hope you’re having fun on your vaca!

  2. This looks delicious! :) A healthy take on a delicious calzone – sign me up!

  3. I have an infinitely long list of things I’ve been wanting to make forever. Thank goodness for Pinterest that at least it is all documented somewhere. I have made the Minimalist Baker pancakes at least 3 times and I highly recommend you tackle those first. Can’t wait to try out these calzones!

  4. This looks so good! I love how you made a healthy calzone! Creative with the use of cauliflower crust.

  5. This is GREAT! Flavors bursting in your mouth!!!

  6. what a great idea! I used to eat so many calzones in college (hello Freshman 15)! This is a clean way!

  7. Hooray for no forks and knives! Pizza is meant for hands. I will probably be trying this sometime soon just because I fell in love with one of your other pizza recipes and I need another one to love. ;)

  8. I love the word rustic,.. I use it anytime something doesn’t turn out as pretty as I wanted it too. although you don’t seem to have that issue here,,, great pics, and I can’t wait to try this! I to have a huge list of “to try”:

  9. Looks delish! I have been meaning to make cauliflower crust for awhile now too! Adding this recipe to my need to make list right now :)

  10. idk which post of yours you were talking about your lack of st. patricks day parties, but i read it a while back and was like, oh yeah i get that.

    then it stayed in my mind. and all day today i’ve been GENUINELY BUMMED OUT that I don’t have a st patricks party to attend. and never have. but it never bothered me before because i didn’t realize it was something i was lacking (somehow i managed to avoid that part of college??). anyway. totally blaming you for pointing out the fact that i to have zero social party times on st. pattys day. WHO KNEW. thanks for that.

    (although I did see this small, quiet man in the cafe this morning with this masssssive green frappucino-looking drink with tons of whip cream that he was just rocking out with. and i almost befriended him. and we almost had our own patty party)

  11. Bestill, my heart. I thought calzones were a thing of the past thanks to gluten. I seriously have everything to make these… I know what I’m doing tomorrow night!

  12. Haha born and raised Chicago gal and sorry to say but Chicago pizza is just deep dish! (Specifically with cheese THEN sauce on top)

    • Wait misread that! You’re both right- we have regular deep dish, but most people prefer the cheese then sauce on top, I thought you meant a pizza pot pie, which we also are known for but that isn’t classical “chicago-style” pizza

  13. Dude! This is such a great idea! I love it. So what if the crust cracked just a little. It was still delicious, I’m sure.

    PS: You guys are both right about the pizza! It is deep dish, and so thick that in order to make sure it all cooks evenly, they have to put the sauce on top of the cheese. Otherwise, the amount of time it requires to cook would burn the cheese to a crisp if it were directly exposed to the heat! So Chicago style = deep dish + (necessarily) reversed toppings.

  14. these look so good! I love rustic and messy :)

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  16. Wait this is so simple… but it looks so complicated! Must try this, I love cauliflower crusts. And calzones.

  17. Yum! That looks so goooooood! I used to hate cauliflower- until I realised you can do so many awesome things with it- I mean, all I used to know was steamed bland floreats!

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  21. It’s amazing how few ingredients make cauli crust. It’s also amazing how I have not yet tried it! I think I see some cauli pizza in my forecast. Thanks for sharing, girl!! :-)

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  26. Could you sub cauliflower for broccoli?

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