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Saturday, January 27, 2018

Family Favorites - January 2018: Gluten- Free Upside Down Pizza (Wheat, Nut and Fish-Free, Can Be Soy, Egg and Milk-Free)

This year, I decided to list a family favorite recipe from the blog (with any adaptions that we use regularly, if applicable) on the fourth Friday or Saturday of every month.  This recipe will be one that we make quite often and that we all enjoy greatly.

If you have a recipe on your blog that you consider a family favorite that you'd like to share, please comment below with a link to the recipe, and I'll make sure to pop on over and visit your site to check it out (and leave a comment), and hopefully some of my other readers will, too.

This month's family favorite that we make weekly is Gluten-Free Upside Down Pizza, which is an adaption of my Upside Down Pizza recipe (I will share the ingredients we normally use, where appropriate, as well). This modification is wheat, nut and fish-free, but can also be soy (if you use all soy-free ingredients), egg and milk-free.

The thing we love most about this recipe is that it is completely customizable, and it is so much easier to make than a gluten-free pizza.  It is definitely cheaper to make, too.  It is my hope that you will give it a go, and maybe it will become a family favorite for you, too.

Note: The gluten-free flour that I recommend does not technically contain soy, but it does contain guar gum (see "Soy-Free" under variations for more details) which can cause issues for people with soy sensitivities or allergies, and that is why I will not claim that this recipe is soy-free.

Gluten-Free Upside Down Pizza

gluten-free pizza toppings of choice that are bite-sized: 
gluten-free pepperoni, cooked hamburger, cooked gluten-free sausage, cooked gluten-free bacon, gluten-free ham, peppers, onions, mushrooms, pineapple, chopped olives, etc.
(We normally use Aldi's Never Any! brand ham lunchmeat (though we've used other gluten-free brands), canned Pennsylvania Dutchman mushrooms (though we've used other gluten-free brands) and Aldi's Mama Cozzi or Hormel sliced pepperoni (though we've used other gluten-free brands), but have used plenty of other combos, as well.)

1 (24 oz.) jar of gluten-free spaghetti sauce
(We normally use Reggano Meat Pasta Sauce from Aldi, but have also used Prego's Chunky Garden Combo and other gluten-free spaghetti sauces, too.)

12 oz. of Mozzarella cheese, shredded
(We always get the blocks of Mozzarella and shred our own.)

2 large eggs

1 Cup milk
(We use whole milk, but you can use whatever you have on hand.)

1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
(Our favorite brand is O-Live.)

1 Cup gluten-free flour blend
(one that is a cup-for-cup replacement for regular flour)
(We use Pamela's Gluten-Free All Purpose Flour.)

dried oregano (optional)
(We prefer McCormick brand, but have used others, too.)

dried parsley flakes (optional)
(We prefer McCormick brand, but have used others, too.)

1. Preheat oven to 350oF.

2. In the bottom of an ungreased, glass, 13x9 pan, combine the spaghetti sauce with your gluten-free toppings of choice, mix well, and spread the mixture evenly along the bottom of the pan.  (Note: If you are using meat toppings, they need to be fully cooked in advance!  Make sure all toppings that need to be cut are cut into bite-sized pieces, too.  Any canned items (mushrooms, olives, canned pineapple, etc.) need to be drained before use, too.  Also, do NOT fill your pan more than half full of toppings/sauce.)

3. Sprinkle most (think two-thirds) of the cheese over sauce/toppings mixture.

4. In a large bowl, mix the eggs, milk, oil, and gluten-free flour thoroughly and pour it evenly over the top of the sauce/toppings mixture and cheese in the pan before sprinkling the rest of the cheese on top.  (Note: Use a large liquid measuring cup (like 3 to 4 Cup capacity) to mix the "crust" in.  It is a lot easier to pour this way!)

5.  If desired, sprinkle the dried oregano and/or dried parsley flakes on top of the "pizza".

6. Bake for 30 - 45 minutes, or until slightly browned and bubbly (think what pizza/lasagna looks like when it's done).

Makes 12 -24 portions, depending on how large you cut your slices.

  • Soy-Free: Pamela's Gluten-Free All Purpose Flour does not claim to contain soy, but it contains guar gum, which can cause issues with people who have soy sensitivities and allergies, and hence the reason I won't claim this recipe is soy-free already.  You can use regular flour (if you can have it) or a soy-free, gluten-free flour of your choice.  Keep in mind that if your blend doesn't contain guar gum or xanthan gum, you may need to add up to 1 teaspoon of ground flax seed, guar gum or xanthan gum to help with textural issues, too.  You'll have to make sure all your ingredients are soy-free, too
  • Egg-FreeUse an egg replacer (such as Ener-G) in place of the eggs.  For ideas on what to use in place of the eggs, check out my ingredient substitutions page.  The flax seed "egg" replacement would be a good fit with this "pizza".
  • Milk-Free: Use non-dairy milk (like SoDelicious brand) and non-dairy mozzarella (Daiya is a good option) in place of the regular cheese and milk in this recipe.
  • Other Cheeses:  You can use the combination of cheese that you like on your pizza for this.  I would not recommend a soft cheese for this.  Mozzarella, CoJack, Monterey Jack, even a touch of Cheddar would be ok depending on the flavor profile you were going for (if you wanted Cheeseburger flavor, for example).  Just don't exceed 12 oz. of cheese.
  • Different Flavors:  You can make this into a Chicken BBQ upside down pizza by using shredded, cooked chicken and a large bottle of BBQ sauce.  You can make it a Chicken Bacon Ranch upside down pizza by using shredded cooked chicken, cooked bacon and a large bottle of Ranch.  Basically, you can use any pizza sauce (white or red), BBQ sauce or Ranch for the sauce with any of your desired toppings, and this will turn out well.  There really is no limit to the toppings other than you don't want to overflow your pan.  It should be no more than half full of toppings/sauce before you add the cheese and "crust".
Sounds good, right?  It is!  It is a good "craving pizza, but don't want to pay for delivery/frozen or take the time to make the crust" alternative.  You can make it as healthy as you want, too!  I hope it becomes a family favorite in your house like it is in ours!

(This recipe was originally posted on my original site, Natural and Free.)

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