Tuesday, February 23, 2016

CHEESE HEAD PIZZA - My Take on Fat Head Low Carb Pizza

This evening I took on a challenge to put my take and spin on the classic low carb "Fat Head" pizza crust recipe (fat head as in the Fat Head movie, a comedy by Tom Naughton). Essentially, it's a pizza crust made of predominantly mozzarella cheese, a little bit of cream cheese, almond flour, an egg and some spices. Sounds a bit gross now, doesn't it? Surprisingly though, its not...it's actually good and my version is super good (if I don't mind saying so myself).

Now, I have already created my share of amazing low carb pizza crust recipes, but when given the challenge, I decided to put my GGC spin on this one by cheese-ifying it (is that even a word)?  So, I proceeded to bump up the mozzarella by 25%, triple the cream cheese, add Parmesan cheese, bump up the almond flour...and it produced one of the most AMAZING crusts EVER! Pfffffft....this was no "fat head" pizza crust...this was CHEESE HEAD pizza crust! I always say...go big (cheese) or go home!

Since I am the only grain-free, low carb person in the house, the true test is always when one of my "regular eating" family members gives one of my new recipes a "thumbs up". Well, hubby did exactly that...he actually gave it a "2 thumbs up" and said it was one of my BEST pizza crusts EVER. Its a crust that you can pick up and hold with your hands (as are most of my other pizza crust recipes)...but this one is also flexible and foldable in a way that only someone either from or who has lived in New York before would know. My hubby just happened to have lived in New York for over 20 years...so when HE says its a great pizza crust and the best ever, that REALLY means something!!! This crust is filling and even though it's delicious, you will find that you can't keep stuffing your face with it like you can regular pizza. A slice or two will do just fine. My pizza crust recipe made a large 11" x 13" oval pizza that I simply pressed out onto a parchment lined baking sheet with oiled hands until 1/4-inch thick. I topped my pizza with Muir Glen's organic pizza sauce, shredded Sargento mozzarella cheese, Fiorucci uncured pepperoni and some sauteed red bell peppers and onions. It was absolutely amazing! I got 8 nice slices from it. I snapped a few photos below (with my cell phone believe it or not). Enjoy!


Dough is spread to 1/4-inch thick
Crust fresh out of the oven (about 13 minutes)
Pizza sauce is spread
Cheese and pepperoni added
Peppers and onions added...ready for the oven
Fresh out of the oven
BOOM..Cheese Head Pizza!

CHEESE HEAD PIZZA – My Take on Fat Head Pizza

INGREDIENTS:

8 ounces (2 cups) shredded mozzarella (whole milk or part skim)
3 ounces brick style cream cheese
1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan (powdery style)
1/8 teaspoon salt
Dash garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
1 large egg
1 tablespoon olive oil (to oil hands before pressing out dough)
Desired toppings (pizza sauce, pepperoni, cooked peppers, onions, mushrooms, additional cheese, etc.)

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet or pizza pan with parchment paper.

Place mozzarella and cream cheese in a medium bowl. Heat cheese in microwave on high for 45 seconds; stir and heat an additional 30 to 45 seconds or until a hot melty mass of cheese is formed.

While cheese is melting in microwave, stir almond flour, Parmesan, salt, garlic powder and Italian seasoning together in a small bowl. Add flour mixture and egg to bowl of hot melted cheese. Working quickly, fold and stir mixture together with a rubber spatula until a ball of dough is formed (make sure cheese mixture is hot before adding flour and egg).   

Place ball of dough in center of parchment lined baking sheet. Oil hands with olive oil (*see note/updated instructions below) and press dough out into desired shape (round, oval or rectangular) until about ¼-inch thick. Prick holes all over crust surface with a fork to prevent crust from bubbling up. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until golden brown (rotate pan half way through for even browning). Remove crust and top with pizza sauce, additional cheese, and any desired toppings. Bake an additional 5 to 7 minutes or until heated through. 

*Note/Update: Rather than oiling hands with olive oil to press dough out, a much easier (and less messy) way to press it out is to pour the tablespoon of olive oil on top of the dough after placing it in the center of baking sheet and use a rubber spatula to press and spread the dough out evenly. If necessary, lightly oil the rubber spatula to keep from sticking.

            

60 comments:

Sami said...

Looks great, I'll be making it this weekend!

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Sami,

I hope you enjoy it! :-)

Denise Bricher said...

I've been using Fat Head's recipe for a couple of years, so of course I've printed this one in preparation for my next pizza. How about a bit of oregano in the crust, too?

Kathie Ray said...

I don't have parmesan cheese :( any suggestions on replacement?

Lisa In Groton, CT said...

You nailed it! I made this tonight. ..I'm so beyond grateful for your hard work and can't wait to try a slice cold..for breakfast!

CyberSis said...

Hi GGC,

This looks great! You'll never guess what I saw when I quickly glanced at the title of your recipe ... "head cheese pizza"! Huhhh??? Oh ... CHEESE Head Pizza! :-) Wow! *Double* thumbs-up hubby approval ... that's the Ultimate! (Are you a Green Bay Packers fan, by the way?)

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Denise,

You will have to let me know what you think when you try it. The Italian seasoning I add has oregano and other herbs in it...but you could certainly just add oregano instead or in addition to the other seasoning. :-)

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Kathie,

Maybe just use additional almond flour in place of the Parmesan since it's the same consistency/texture as finely grated/powdery Parmesan. Hope that helps! :-)

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Lisa,

YAY!!! Finally some feedback from someone that has made it already. I'm so happy you enjoyed it...and I can speak from experience that it IS good cold as I had some leftover cold pizza for lunch this afternoon. :-)

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi CyberSis,

LOL...I can NOT stop laughing ("head cheese"). If you ever see me make anything with head cheese you will know for sure that I have completely and totally gone off the deep end!

Hee hee...I am not much of a football fan to be honest with you. My sons are love football so I am forced to "observe" (not watch) it frequently! :-)

CyberSis said...

Hi GGC,

I'm not a fan, either. But I've heard of "Cheese Heads." :-)

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi CyberSis,

I'll have to remember that. This could become the "official snack of Packers fans"... ;-)

Sylvia said...

Ayla,
this is the best pizza crust I've made. I am throwing out all the other recipes as this one even received approval from my grain eating 84 year old mother!!!

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Sylvia,

Wow! I'm so happy you enjoyed it and you gave it the BEST seal of approval I could receive from your "grain eating" mother. So very happy she enjoyed it too! :-)

Michelle in VA said...

I agree with Sylvia - this is fantastic for pizza crust! My all time favorite after Chicago Deep Dish from Unos. We didn't read your reheating suggestion, and used 100% power on the microwave the next day for reheating left overs. The crust was still perfect, not at all chewy.

And its got me thinking: could I use this recipe in other ways? The one that keeps coming to mind is to spread out the prepared dough on the parchment paper, then use a canning lid make largish circles, bake and use the finished circles for breakfast or open faced sandwiches? From having made the pizza crust, I know that its a bit damp, so the extra dough between circles might have to be carefully pulled away [..and rolled into soft bread sticks??]. How important is it to use mozzarella? Would a Mexican cheese blend also work with the cream and parmesan cheeses here?

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Michelle,

I'm so glad you enjoyed the pizza crust! I'm sure you could use this recipe in other ways and with other cheese as long as they are similar in texture to shredded mozzarella. I'm sure a Mexican Cheese Blend would be awesome and still work with the cream cheese and Parmesan. You could do some pepper jack as well for some zip.

Now...back to Uno's Pizza......you are in luck because I just happened to have a post for my love of Uno's and my recipe for Chicago Style Deep Dish Pizza. You will LOVE it! Here's the link: http://www.gourmetgirlcooks.com/2014/04/chicago-style-deep-dish-skillet-pizza.html

Hope you enjoy. :-)

Candy Sanelli said...

This is the closest I've ever tasted to "real" pizza. The crust is fabulous - you can pick it up to eat, but it's still bendable. I've loved pizza all my life and it is the one thing that I will occasionally cheat and eat. But, this recipe is life changing. It's easy to make and is so good. Anyone who is afraid to try low carb pizza will have their mind blown when they try this! Thanks so much for your fantastic blog!

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Thanks so much Candy!!! That just made my day! So glad you enjoyed it. :-)

Mary Stephens said...

Does anyone know the carb count and fat count for the crust?

Kathleen Jackson said...

I want to try this recipe, but darn it all, I'm allergic to nuts! Do you think I could substitute coconut flour or sunflower seed flour? Or would you have another suggested substitute?

Cass @ That Old House said...

This is darn near perfect. I've made this several times. Always a hit! Thanks from the bottom of my LC GF heart.

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Mary,

I like to use this nutrition calculator (free): https://www.caloriecount.com/cc/recipe_analysis.php

There are other free calculators on line as well...Spark People, Fat Secret and others. :-)

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Kathleen,

Hmmm...You could try a couple of different options to replace the almond flour. I haven't tried it myself but I know some others allergic to nuts use sunflower seed flour (finely ground sunflower seeds). Or, you might be able to swap out more finely ground (powdery style) Parmesan cheese. Instead of adding 1/4 cup Parmesan like called for, bump it up to a total of 1 cup. I may test that out myself in the future. If you try it before me, let me know how it turns out. :-)

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Cass,

Thanks SO much. I am so happy you're enjoying it. It does my heart good to hear. ;-)

Cynthia said...

I made this crust tonight. Oh my gosh! It was so good that you would think you were eating real pizza crust. Thank you so much for this recipe

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Cynthia,

I'm so happy you enjoyed the pizza crust. It's always good to hear that others enjoy my recipes, too. I'm still shocked at how close the texture is to regular pizza too! :-)

Nila said...

Best gf pizza ever! Very close to real pizza but tastes much cleaner. The recipe is quite flexible. I just had a 8 oz bag of Mexican cheese and so used about 5 oz for the crust along with the cream cheese, no Parmesan , 1 cup almond flour and egg. I used the remaining 3 oz cheese to sprinkle on top of the pizza but still it tasted awesome. This will be my go- to recipe for pizza henceforth. Very easy to put together as well . Thank u so much for this great recipe. ��

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Thanks Nila. So happy you enjoyed it. It can be made with most any type of shredded cheese; so happy you found it easy to make, too. :-)

Nancy Atsadi said...

I made this tonight, it was beyond great! I may never make pizza any other way. Thank you for the recipe.

Nancy Atsadi said...

I made this tonight, it is beyond great! I may never make pizza any other way. Thank you for your many recipes.

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Thanks so much Nancy! I'm so happy you enjoyed it. :-)

Diane Duerst said...

My husband and I made this last night. I was out of almond flour so I used a cup of the Wheat Belly Grain Free Baking Mix instead but followed everything else exactly! My husband and I loved it! I think it is better than regular crust pizza. Even this morning my husband mentioned how good it was again. I was out of parchment paper so we rolled it between freezer wrap with the shiny side facing the dough and some olive oil. I baked one a baking stone and the other on a Silpat baking mat. No problems with sticking! Just delicious!

Anonymous said...

There's just me here. Since you said you got 8 slices from it, is to possible to divide the dough in fourths and refrigerate...or freeze...the other 3 portions for later baking?

Anonymous said...

Is it possible to divide the full recipe in halves or quarters and then freeze before baking....or after the first baking, but before adding toppings?

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Anonymous,

It might be difficult rolling the dough out after refrigerating or freezing. If you did that you might want to pre-bake the crust first before freezing or refrigerating. :-)

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Diane,

So happy you enjoyed the crust and smart substitutions! Glad to hear it didn't stick to the pizza stone too! I may have to try that out myself. :-)

Nancy said...

What did I do wrong? The crust totally stuck to the parchment paper. Couldn't even pull it off. Had to scrape the toppings and whatever portion of the crust came away and eat it as one big unappetizing lump If I try it again, I'd put it on the non stick aluminum foil.

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Nancy,

Wow! I've never had anything stick to parchment paper before! There's no chance you accidentally used wax paper or freezer paper is there? I'm assuming not but thought I'd ask. The only thing I could suggest is maybe spritzing your parchment paper with olive oil? Recently I've been placing the ball of warm dough in the center of the parchment on a cookie sheet and pouring a tablespoon of oil on top of the blob of dough and using a rubber spatula to spread it out thin and even (and keep my hands from getting messy). It works like a charm. I am truly puzzled that your crust stuck to parchment!!! Let me know how it turns out next time on the nonstick foil. I think someone actually told me they spread it out on a pizza stone and it didn't stick (which surprised me). Keeping my fingers crossed it works for you next time because it really is a good crust.

Paula said...

I just made this crust for the first time. Unlike you, I was not satisfied with 1-2 pieces of pizza. Oh no! I ate half of it. Could not stop! YUM! Thanks so much for sharing it with us.

Cammie said...

I found it really important not to over cook the crust. Take it out when it's golden, not brown, bcease it will cook further when it goes back in the oven with the toppings. The first time I made it I over cooked it and didn't like it that much; the second time I made it I paid much more attention, rotating it at 5 minutes and then checking it again after 12 minutes total baking time. Maybe my oven runs a little hot. Also, once the toppings were added,mi only baked it 2 or 3 minutes more, then a few minutes under the broiler to make everything sizzle and slightly crisp on the top. The only change in ingredients were that I used an additional 1/4 cup of almond flour instead of the powdery Parmesan, which is not something I usually have on hand, and the texture was perfect. Didn't really need that extra cheese at all, imho, already cheesy enough! Just be sure to use tasty seasonings. The tip about pouring the olive oil on top of the dough was a great idea. On a whim I used a tablespoon of roast d garlic olive oil and it gave the crust a wonderful depth of flavor. Oh, and I guess there was one other change, discovered I didn't have any sauce so just added some spices and olive oil to about a cup of strained tomatoes, and it worked perfectly. Think I will freeze the rest of the strained tomatoes in cubes for future such emergencies. All in all a fabulous and super easy recipe! Many thanks!!! Cammie

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Paula,

So happy you enjoyed it! :-)

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Cammie,

So happy you enjoyed it. Great tips as well. I bet the roasted garlic is really delicious...it sounds great. I like to run my pizza under the broiler briefly as well to just begin to brown the toppings. You are right, it is very easy to burn any baked good with almond flour and a few minutes can make a big difference between golden and burned. I'm glad you are enjoying putting your own spin on it...that's the best part about cooking; the joy of experimenting to make a recipe perfect for you! Thanks for the tips and suggestions. :-)

Cammie said...

Oh, and I know there are many great olive oils ou there, but I use oils from olive oil.com, where they crush the flavors together with the olives, and it is divine! Not to mention organic. Really fabulous stuff, and lucky me the company is in the town where I live! Anyway, for try it out, you won't regret it. And no, I don't work for them! Now, time to warm up last night's pizza: Tom sauce, sliced provolone, sun dried tomato chicken sausage, red onion, broccoli and goat cheese. It was sooo good. It will be an effort not to have pizza every night!

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Cammie,

Thanks for the olive oil suggestion. I'll check it out. Your pizza sounds delicious! Love the combination of toppings. So happy you are enjoying it. :-)

Cammie said...

The spell checker imps are playing havoc with my emails! The company name is O olive oil. And the website is all those letters put together, plus dot com. Hopefully that comes through

Christine King said...

This is a superb pizza base... So good that I took it to work and they loved it and wanted the recipe.
To mix the dough.. I have a very quick and easy way..
Put kitchen disposable gloves on and work the dough with your hands. It doesn't stick and you can simple peel off the gloves when finished and dispose.
I roll out between baking paper, then lift the baking paper and place on tray.
This is such a great recipe..thank you so much

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Christine,

Thank you. Awesome that your coworkers liked it too. Great tip and idea for working with the dough, and rolling it out, too. So happy you are enjoying it. You are very welcome. :-)

Austin's RV Workamping Adventures said...

I user this dough to make bagel dogs, chips, sandwich bread, dinner rolls (think crescent), potpies, hot pockets, etc. Tons things you can make with it

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Austin's RV,

Wow...how creative! I'm so happy you are enjoying it in a variety of clever ways. :-)

Anonymous said...

Made this for dinner and it was DELICIOUS. I didn't even have enough cheese to put into the crust - I had about half. And it still came out great! Wow, didn't know it was going to be this easy :) Thank you!

Am just curious: Is it possible to substitute the dairy (cheeses like cream cheese and mozzarella) with something else and still allow the crust to hold well? Have you tried this?

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Anonymous,

I haven't tried substituting anything for the cheese. I have other pizza crusts your could try though that don't have anywhere near as much cheese in the crust. Have you tried any of my other crusts? :-)

Paulette Silkey said...

Im making crust as we type but it says 8 0z of cheese and then it says 2 cups......8 0z is one cup........which do i use......thank!

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Paulette,

I answered you on Facebook and it's probably too late....but 8 oz of shredded cheese is a "weight" measurement instead of "volume" (like water, sugar, flour, etc.). So...8 oz of shredded cheese equals 2 cups shredded cheese. If you buy an 8-ounce bag of shredded mozzarella (Sargento, Kraft, etc.) the package says 8 ounces (weight) but usually written on the front of the bag it will say "2 cups".

Sandy VanDyck said...

Pretty Darn Good

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Thanks Sandy! :-)

Anonymous said...

Hi, I must say pizza is the only food that I have missed ever since starting wheat belly. I am very excited to make this. Is pepperoni okay for wheat belly? What type should buy?

Thank you. I'll let you know how it turns out.
Kathy

Anonymous said...

Sorry, just saw that you specify the type of pepperoni, thx

Kathy

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Kathy,

I also sometimes use Boars Head pepperoni, too! :-)

Akfaye said...

This is a wonderful recipe and I have made it at least 5 times. Delicious!
I read where it is messy trying to spread out the dough on the parchment paper and one of the tips was to add olive oil to top and then spread with a spatula. Another tip that I use is to use another piece of parchment paper and place on top of your mound of dough and spread to the desired thickness. It works great with no mess!

Amygale said...

Wonderful. I put spinach,chicken sausage,sun dried tomatoes,feta cheese as my toppings.