Let’s get a few things straight. Yes, I’m from/currently live in Chicago. Yes, deep dish is popular. Yes, deep dish is delicious. BUT it isn’t the only kind of pizza and Chicagoans aren’t going to try and shove it down your throat the minute you step into our city.
Unless they have these deep dish pizza muffins. They might (and should) shove these down your throat.
When I tell people I live in Chicago one of the first things they mention is deep dish. The hot dog/ketchup debate comes up (FYI: I’m anti-ketchup but mega pro-mustard) as well as our sports teams. I get it, we all have pre-conceived notions about the famous food from any place. But for the people who actually live there, that food is most likely NOT what they are eating day in and day out.
Deep dish is amazing and I have indulged in more than my fair share and sure it’s easy to find it here in Chicago but let’s be real here. Deep dish is a LOT of food and you can NOT subsist on those daily/weekly/heck even monthly. So what’s a gal to do when she wants deep dish but doesn’t want to feel like a two-ton cow? And oh yeah, doesn’t eat dairy or gluten?
Make mini versions that are dairy and gluten free of course. Isn’t that the answer to any problem? Mini things? I think so.
Make a huge batch of these and freeze them to eat throughout the week for lunch or dinner. Easy peasy. You can also change up the filling from spinach and artichoke to whatever you feel like. Pesto would be tasty. Then again, pesto is always tasty!
Deep Dish Pizza Muffins
For the crust:
- 1 medium sweet potato, steamed until soft (skin left on)
- 2 tbsp chia seeds, ground (if you have a coffee grinder this is perfect)
- 3 tbsp coconut flour (more if needed)
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 cup water
For the filling:
- 1 batch of tomato sauce or your favorite pizza sauce
- 1 cup raw cashews, soaked in boiling water for 15 minutes
- 2/3 cup full-fat coconut milk
- 1 can artichoke hearts, drained
- 1 cup spinach leaves
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1/2 tsp basil
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- Preheat oven to 400. Steam the sweet potato and while that’s cooking, make the filling. Add the cashews, coconut milk, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, salt, and pepper to a blender or a food processor. Blend until smooth.
- Add the artichokes and spinach to the blender and pulse until just combined leaving it a little chunky. Scoop out the filling and set aside. Rinse out the blender.
- Once the sweet potato is steamed and cooled a little, cut into rough chunks and place in blender or food processor. Add the rest of the ingredients and blend until smooth. Add more coconut flour if the dough feels a little loose. It should be fairly stiff but still spreadable.
- Line a muffin tin with paper cups, and spread about a tablespoon of the dough in the bottom and up the sides of the muffin cups. This might be a little messy but make sure the bottom is covered. Bake this for 15 minutes.
- Pull out the crusts and add a little tomato sauce and then fill the rest with spinach artichoke filling. Bake again for another 15 minutes. The muffins are done when they’re brown around the edges and feel firm in the middle.
- Let the muffins cool in the pan for 5 minutes and then on a rack. Let them cool completely if you’re going to freeze them for later.