Veggie Pizza w/ Homemade Vegan Beer Crust

DSC_0320There is this local pizza restaurant in San Clemente that has all the quintessential qualities you would expect for a family-owned surf town joint. It is where all major sporting events are watched, where your child’s fifth birthday will be held, and where you go to eat the best pizza and drink craft beers with good friends. One of my favorite things about this place, is that it not only makes every pizza from scratch, but that the selections include a range between standard pizzas and new unique versions of the classics. The thing I crave the most, is their take on a vegan beer crust. Kris and I order every pizza with this crust and just about die every time because it is honestly the softest, chewiest, fluffiest, and most flavorful crust we have ever tried. I knew that I had to recreate it at home and luckily it was a job well done. The beer creates this richness in the crust that you can not get from the yeast and flour alone. I chose to use a local IPA, India Pale Ale, which is essentially just a dark, crisp, hoppy beer. Please feel free to use your favorite beer, but remember the darker and hoppier; the more flavor will come across into the crust. Also, it is worth noting that the crust is made with whole-wheat flour so there is that extra bit of nutrients and fiber that you don’t normally get from a pizza, so go ahead, have another slice! This recipe is seriously easy and homemade pizza is so worth every minute of the prep time. It is super versatile, like most pizza recipes, in the sense that you can top it with whatever it is you like; meats, cheeses, veggies, or fruits! The possibilities are endless. Enjoy fellow pizza lovers! 
















Veggie Pizza w/ Homemade Vegan Beer Crust

Serves 4

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Prep Time
2 hr 30 min

Cook Time
20 min

Total Time
2 hr 50 min

Prep Time
2 hr 30 min

Cook Time
20 min

Total Time
2 hr 50 min

For the Vegan Beer Crust
  1. 3/4 cup dark beer (I used a local IPA)
  2. 1 package active dry yeast (1/4oz envelope)
  3. 1/2 TBSP cane sugar
  4. 2 TBSP extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  5. 1.5 tsp sea salt
  6. 1.5 cups whole-wheat flour (plus about 4-5 TBSP for kneading and rolling)
For the Veggie Toppings
  1. 1 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
  2. 10oz bag of sliced (clean & washed) Cremini mushrooms
  3. 1/2 tsp salt
  4. 1/2 tsp pepper
  5. 8oz bag baby bell peppers (of mixed colors), sliced thin in rounds
  6. 1 shallot, sliced thin in rounds
  7. 1 green onion, sliced thin
  8. 1 jalapeño, sliced thin in rounds (remove the rib and seeds if you do not want too spicy)
  9. 1/2 cup pizza sauce, marinara or other (I used Arrabiata sauce)* see note
  10. 1-1.5 cups organic shredded mozzarella cheese (or any shredded cheese you like, vegan cheese too!)
  11. 1 TBSP chopped fresh basil, chiffonade style
For the Vegan Beer Crust
  1. Pour the beer into a sauce pan and heat over low heat for about 2 minutes. Put your finger in to test that it is warm but not hot (if the beer is too hot it will kill the yeast!). Remove from heat.
  2. In a large glass bowl, add the yeast and sugar and pour the warm beer in. Whisk well and then let sit for about 5 minutes until it is foamy and frothy.
  3. Whisk in 1 TBSP of the olive oil. Add the salt and 1.5 cups of the flour. Mix well with a wooden spoon. Spread a two tablespoons of flour on a clean work surface. Knead the dough with your hands adding more flour (1 TBSP at a time) if you need to (the dough should not be too sticky, it should come together and become elastic. It should bounce back when you poke it).
  4. Add the remaining TBSP of olive oil to the glass bowl you previously used and flip the bowl around so the oil coats the sides and bottom of the bowl. Add the dough ball to the bowl and coat all sides of the dough in the oil. Cover the bowl with a dish towel or plastic wrap and let sit on the counter for two hours.
  5. Take the dough ball out of the glass bowl and place onto a clean work surface or parchment paper and cover with a warm, damp towel and let rise for another 20 minutes. At this point, you can refrigerate the dough for a later use.
  6. Preheat the oven to 400. If you have a pizza stone, place it in the oven to preheat as well.
  7. Roll out the dough on a floured work surface into a 12″ circle. Pinch the sides so that you get a slightly raised crust edge.
For the Veggie Toppings
  1. Slice all the veggies into thin rounds. Remove the ribs and seeds from the bell peppers and jalapeño. Separate the shallot slices from each other.
  2. In a skillet, heat 1 TBSP olive oil over medium. Add the sliced Cremini mushrooms, salt and pepper, and sauté for about 3 minutes. Set aside.
  3. Place the rolled out dough onto the baking sheet or pizza stone you wish to cook the pizza on (if using a pizza stone careful not to touch as it will be hot!).
  4. Working quickly, spread a thin layer of the pizza sauce over the pizza dough, leaving room on edges so the crust is clean. Add the sautéed mushrooms on top of the sauce (use a slotted spoon here so that you don’t get any of the water that cooked out of the mushrooms). Sprinkle the shredded mozzarella over the sauce and mushrooms. Sprinkle the sliced shallot, green onion, bell peppers, and jalapeño over the top of the cheese in a colorful fashion. You may not use every veggie that you sliced, I didn’t. (Use any leftovers in a salad!) Bake for 20 minutes or until crust edges are golden brown. Once removed from the oven and cooled slightly, sprinkle the basil over the top. Slice into 8 slices, serve immediately and enjoy!
  1. Arrabiata sauce is a marinara sauce that has a bit of a kick (it’s pretty spicy!). I love this on my pizza but feel free to use any sauce that you like in particular. This goes for the cheese as well.
Adapted from Beer Crust
Adapted from Beer Crust

One Response to "Veggie Pizza w/ Homemade Vegan Beer Crust"

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  1. sudhakar

    12 April, 2015 at 2:37 am

    The pie dough looks amazing. Love that beery colour.


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