I’ve been tinkering around in my kitchen with Tapioca Flour and, while it walks the line between Paleo and not-Paleo, it truly is an amazing flour to add to your grain-free pantry. I’ve made bread and fritters with it in the past but I wanted to see if I could make a Paleo pizza crust that was reminiscent of the thin crust pizzas that my husband loves.
Mr. Bejelly pronounced it the best crust I have ever made to date so I take that as high praise from his picky self. You can make this really thin and it will be super crispy and firm or make it more doughy and soft. For a crispy crust keep the thickness at 1/4″ to 1/2″. Anything larger than this and you will have a soft crust. This recipe is super simple and dairy-free.
A lot of people often wonder if they can use arrowroot instead or tapioca. I wrote a post sharing why tapioca and arrowroot are not the same that goes into more detail but here is the 411 on tapioca flour.
“Sometimes called tapioca flour, tapioca starch, like arrowroot, is most often used to thicken glazes, sauces, gravies and baked goods. It stays stable in cold temperatures, so it too is good to use for foods you will freeze. It also works well in milk-based recipes, so it should be used instead of arrowroot for gravies or other dairy-based recipes. Tapioca is not recommended for use with high acid foods because it loses its ability to thicken when mixed with acidity. Liquids thickened with tapioca will have a transparent sheen which adds to the presentation of many foods. Like arrowroot, tapioca has very little taste of its own, so it will not interfere with the taste of a recipe. Tapioca thickens quickly, so is a good staple to keep on hand for last-minute thickening before serving a dish. Tapioca can withstand being heated for a long period of time, which is an important difference from arrowroot. Some cooks like to use pearl tapioca in pies and puddings, but take note that these pearls often do not fully dissolve, so it is recommended to use the starch to ensure the tapioca completely dissolves, unless you want the added texture.”
I just created a video tutorial for this recipe if you need extra help.
The first thing you need to understand is that the mixture must be very warm when mixed together. This can be tricky since there are eggs, but watch the video to see what I’m talking about.
There are a lot of factors that go into baking for instance 1) your oven 2) your altitude and humidity and possibly even the flour you are using. I only use Bob’s Red Mill Tapioca Flour in all of my baking. I would consider this recipe to be an advanced cooking level recipe and you will have to watch the video to make sure your dough looks similar to what I have shown.
Another tip: Read through the comments to see what others have done!
Also, I do all of my baking on a heavy stainless steel baking sheet and I really think that this affects how my crust bakes up.
Paleo Pizza Crust
In a small pan add your olive oil, water, sea salt and garlic and bring to a boil. Remove from the stove and add in your Tapioca flour and mix.
Let this sit for 5 minutes and then work in your Italian seasoning and egg.
The dough should be soft and pliable and not sticky. If it's sticky please add more flour.
Here you can either shape into bread rolls or take two sheets of parchment paper and roll/flatten out the dough into a pizza dough.
For a crispy crust keep the thickness at 1/4" to 1/2". Anything larger than this and you will have a soft crust.
Remove the top piece of parchment paper and sprinkle the top of the dough with 1 tsp of almond flour.
Bake at 350 for 25 minutes on a stainless steel baking sheet. When the crust is done you can top with your topping and cook until warm - roughly 10 minutes more at 350.
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