Ah, the sweetest words that any keto-mama, or any parental-cook for that matter, can hear. Maybe she was just really hungry, maybe it’s just that kids like pizza, but I have to agree that this is a tasty recipe. I made a big version for the family too (see below)–use up that zucchini and its gluten-free!
Nora loves pizza, so it’s great to have good keto-versions for her. She adores the Bake-and-Freeze Keto Pizzas from the Keto Cookbook (get the book if you don’t have it yet! and see their great blog at ketocook.com) but they are very labor intensive and not for the rest of the family. They are great to make in batches so that you can pull a quick meal out of the freezer to reheat when you don’t feel like cooking; for example, when you just want to order pizza for the rest of the family! I like that this form of pizza gets more veggies into her diet.
It’s nice to make a keto-version of a family recipe because you can make them at the same time. Everyone is eating almost the same thing so it’s a family meal. It’s also very labor intensive to make some of Nora’s meals, so if you make the same thing for the family it lightens the load. Shredding zucchini to get a mere 40 g of it for Nora’s meal would be silly, or Nora would be eating zucchini recipes for a week, or it would go to waste. Save time, money, and food by feeding everyone with the same ingredients.
I remembered this recipe from a weekly CSA (community supported agriculture) newsletter that we got when we were members of BC Gardens CSA in Minneapolis. I had to search through my old recipe stashes to find it. It is a naturally low-carb recipe, but my keto version is only a 2:1 ratio. For Nora, it’s almost enough calories for a full meal, plus a little more fat on the side to prop up the ratio for her. It struggled to hold the oil, so I might cut the oil in half next time and deliver it separately.
To shred the zucchini, I used my food processor. There are other methods beautifully photographed and described at the Against All Grains blog. I am going to keep working on zucchini noodle recipes and post more soon, along with more pictures of my process and what works best for me.
40 grams shredded zucchini
24 g whole milk mozzarella
14 g olive oil
14 g egg, beaten
6 g ground pork
20 g Muir Glen fire roasted diced tomatoes
Preheat oven to 400.
Shred zucchini, measure 40 g, and sprinkle with salt in small bowl. Let stand 10 minutes or more; squeeze dry with paper towels. Wipe out bowl and return zucchini to bowl (it works ok to omit this step if you don’t have time). Stir in the egg and 1/2 of the mozzarella. Press mixture evenly into pan in a crust shape. I used a little individual-sized pizza pan. Bake in preheated oven for 10-15 minutes or until set.
Brown ground pork in skillet. Take out 6 g of the cooked pork and mix into 20 g tomato sauce. Spoon over baked zucchini crust. Sprinkle with the remaining cheese and other toppings (calculate in for your purposes). Bake at 400 for 10-15 minutes or until bubbly.
The oil will pool around the crust as it cooks. Maybe if you are using a pan with higher edges it will stay in the crust. When it is completely cooked, I carefully move it to a plate, scrape the remaining oil from the pan on to the pizza, the refrigerate for a short time before cutting and serving. Nora eats it like a pizza, with her hands. When she is finished, we again use a rubber spatula to scrape any remaining oil from the plate and feed it to her, usually with leftover scraps from the plate. She’s a good sport about it.
Everyone can enjoy the non-keto version of this recipe! Gluten-free, low-carb, cheesily delicious. It’s more like a casserole in this form and reminds me of Midwestern hot dish. Pile on the sauce as thick as you like and eat it with a fork. Our family cleaned up an entire pie pan of it tonight too.
Zucchini Pizza Casserole
2 cups shredded zucchini
1 cup shredded mozzarella
1 egg, beaten
1/4 lb. ground pork or beef (or omit)
1/4 cup chopped onion
1/2 to 1 cup tomato sauce
1 clove garlic
fresh oregano, to taste
Other toppings as you like
Preheat oven to 400. Grease pie pan with olive oil.
Shred zucchini and sprinkle with salt in small bowl. Let stand 10 minutes or more; squeeze dry with paper towels. Wipe out bowl and return zucchini to bowl (it works ok to omit this step if you are in a hurry). Stir in the egg (keto families: just use the remaining egg after you measure the 14 g for the keto version) and 1/2 of the mozzarella. Press mixture evenly into pan in a crust shape. Bake in preheated oven for 15-20 minutes or until set.
Brown ground pork and onion in skillet. Mix into tomato sauce. Add crushed garlic and oregano. Spoon over baked zucchini crust. Sprinkle with rest of cheese and other toppings. Bake at 400 for 20 minutes or until bubbly.
Cool, cut and enjoy.