I would never willingly follow a gluten-free diet. Please understand that I know some people need it for medical purposes—sensitivities, allergies, and intolerances. I get that. It's just that … I'm not any of those things. I like gluten. I can eat gluten. I kind of adore gluten. So when I tell you that I've fallen in love with a gluten-free pizza, you have to understand how hard it is for me to admit that.
The beauty of gluten-free products today is how good they have become. When gluten-free products really began increasing in popularity/necessity about 5 years ago, they were, to be curt, crap. Too often, those early gluten-free foods were dry, flavorless, and unfortunately a necessity for people. Never were they anything you'd actually subject yourself to if you didn't have to.
Then I tried California Pizza Kitchen Gluten-Free Margherita Pizza. In a word: life-changing. We'll get to the crust in a moment, but the toppings deserve their own moment in the spotlight. Typical frozen pizza toppings tends to be sad, limp, and lifeless. A margherita pizza is one of the most basic pizzas in any line, but this one manages to be complex at the same time. Plump, juicy tomatoes sit atop a lightly seasoned tomato sauce that's infused with balsamic vinegar. The mozzarella doesn't suffer from the time in the freezer. It's still warm, nutty, and super stringy.
The crust, however, is the main attraction. It's made from brown rice flour, which means it's actually whole grain. (It's the second ingredient, behind water.) You wouldn't know it by taste. It's warm, salty, and buttery. (Not too salty, though. One serving has just 470mg sodium, relatively good for frozen pizza.) It's thin, not quite cracker thin, but thin. In the oven, it crisps up to a snappy texture that is lick-your-lips delicious.
The best part to me, however, is how much pizza you get in a serving. One-third (1/3!!!) of the pizza is a serving. It only has 220 calories, 9g fat, 3.5g sat fat, and 2g sugar. That leaves room for a big ol' pile of greens!
Do you have a favorite gluten-free pizza or crust?