June 2, 2011

Deep Dish Pizza with Italian Veggie Sausage and Spinach

I've been reading all the Vegan Confessions from my last post! I'm glad I'm not the only one who has felt guilty about killing an insect! Keep 'em coming!

I can't tell you how excited I was to make this pizza! It's been forever since I've had deep dish and it's always been my favorite type of pizza crust. I used to eat Pizza Hut and Domino's deep dish crusts, but since they're not vegan, I don't eat them anymore! Papa Murphy's deep dish crust was Vegan, but for some reason they stopped making it! Not good people. 

The company Lightlife was kind enough to send me some samples of their products to test out and incorporate into some of my recipes. I've had there stuff before and was so excited to try more of their yummy products! They're the ones responsible for making Tofu Dogs and Smart Pups...my favorite Vegan hot dog brand! One of the things they sent me was a container of Vegan "sausage". Honestly, that was probably the one I was least excited about. Until I got the idea to make Italian Sausage for my pizza! Sausage used to be my favorite pizza topping when I was little! It turned out so great you guys! And because everything else on the pizza was a guilty pleasure, I had to add some spinach to make myself feel a little bit better about eating half the pizza. Enjoy!

Find the printer friendly version of this recipe here!

Crust Ingedients:
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp dry soy milk powder (You can substitute liquid milk here. Just remove 1 tbsp of water from the 3/4 cup)
  • 2 1/4 cup flour (I used a combination of whole wheat and all purpose white)
  • 1 tsp yeast
Preheat the oven to 400F.

I made my dough in my bread maker. It's so much easier than mixing it by hand and waiting for it to rise! I would highly recommend one. If you're also using a breadmaker, put the ingredients in your pan as listed above and use the dough setting.

If you're not using a bread maker, pour the water in a small bowl. Add the yeast and allow to stand for 10-15 minutes. In separate, larger bowl mix together the dry ingredients. Then add the wet ingredients, plus the water and yeast mixture. Mix together well until a ball of dough has formed. If it's too wet, add a little bit more flour. If it's too dry add a little bit more water or milk.

Keep the dough in the bowl and cover with towel and set in a warm place. Allow to rise for 30-45 minutes until it's doubled in size. Meanwhile, let's make the sausage!

Sausage ingredients:
  • 1 package of Lightlife Gimme Lean® Sausage or your favorite sausage substitute
  • 1 tbsp light oil
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp crushed anise seed
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
 Heat the oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Add the sausage and spices and cook until browned. Remove from heat when it's done browning.

Once the pizza dough is done rising, roll out onto a floured surface. Liberally grease a 9x13 baking dish with light oil and sprinkle with a little salt. Place the dough in the dish and work up on the side of the dish to form a deep dish crust. Fill with your favorite pizza sauce, layer about 1 cup spinach, then about 1 cup of the sausage, and sprinkle with your favorite non-dairy cheeses (I used Daiya!)

Bake in the 400F oven for 20-25 minutes until the crust is golden brown.

 The finished product!


  1. Hey Matthew, I saw this on The Kind Life Forums. I commented there, but I wasn't sure which you'd see first, so I commented here as well! (I hope you don't mind!)

    I'm wondering if you have any other good bread recipes for your bread maker! I've been trying to find good bread recipes for ours but I have yet to find one! Usually dry milk or butter or something else is called for. I've made quite a few attempts at vegan versions but failed miserably each time. Any help would be appreciated!

    Also, so I don't totally mess up this crust due to user error:

    1. Does it matter if I use rapid rise yeast? Is there a time difference?

    2. You used a mix of regular flour and whole wheat- can I just use "bread flour"? I don't suppose it would make a difference but I just want to make sure!

    Thanks so much, I will try a veggie pizza tonight using this dough!

  2. Hey Sara! The only recipe I have on here so far are these ones:




    Also within the next week or two I'll be uploading a cinnamon raisin bread recipe. The yeast I use is a quick rise yeast for bread machines. Is that what your using? Using just one flour should work out just fine!

  3. Thank you so much Matthew!!

    I have been so bummed about the homemade bread. We brought home a bread maker in January and I have been so discouraged by my first few attempts that I haven't tried again! It's great to see these, though, so I will try all four. (Um, garlic breadsticks, I think my husband will FLIP if he comes home to that tonight! Thanks!)

  4. I've actually been a little bummed with how my bread maker actually bakes too. I might just use it for mixing and rising the dough from now on. The cinnamon raisin bread that I'll be posting in the future was baked in the oven and it was so much better than the bread I've actually baked in the bread maker!

  5. Looks delicious! Thanks for sharing, added to my faves. :)

  6. That looks SO great, I've actually never tried deep dish pizza, I've always been a thin crust kinda gal but I think I need to give this a go.

  7. Have mercy. Matthew, it looks as if I'm going to have to send you a bill for having my clothes let out! This sounds beyond delicious, and I'm very much looking forward to making it!