Have you ever tried or heard of pan de bono? Those deliciously soft, cheesy and naturally gluten free Colombian bread rolls that are simply to die for? If you haven’t yet, you should absolutely check them out as they are a gluten free must in my opinion. And well, it turns out they also make for an amazing gluten free pizza base alternative! 🍕
I think it may even be my new favourite homemade pizza! I know I said the same about my arepa pizza recipe a while back, but you know what this actually tops it! It has a perfect crunchy outer crust and the cheese gives the base that soft elastic chewy touch that’s often missing from homemade gluten free pizzas. If, like me, you’re tired of dry stiff cardboard crap, then this is it!
Yes it’s essentially a cheese crust with more cheese on top. But who’s complaining? NOT ME. 🧀😂
What flours do I need?
For those who aren’t familiar with pan de bono, they’re made with a blend of cassava/tapioca starch, cornflour and pre-cooked cornmeal.
I personally use a pre-made blend by Ingredion (see below). You can make your own pan de bono flour mix yourself, but I highly recommend using a pre-made blend if you have access to one as it’s just so much easier and you don’t have to worry about getting exactly the right ratio. Plus the tapioca starch in this is modified so I suspect it’s not exactly the same as tapioca flour.
I know that having to source all these exotic flours is annoying and honestly I used to fell the same. I avoided all recipes using anything other than standard gluten free flour blends that you can easily get in supermarkets. But the truth is if you want fantastic gluten free baked goods that far exceed the usual gluten free quality, this is the way to go.
If you can’t find it (or the individual flours) in any shops near you, I recommend buying it online.
Gluten Free Pan de Bono Pizza Base Recipe:
- 175g / 1 +1/2 cups Pan de bono flour blend (I used Ingredion which is certified gluten free)
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 210g / 2 cups fresh shredded mozzarella (I used this kind, made specifically for pizza)
- 65g / ½ cup feta cheese
- 1 large egg (50g)
- 45g / 3 Tbsp butter
- Milk (Just a tiny bit, only if the dough is too dry)
- Olive oil (to brush over the pizza base)
- Pizza sauce
- Cheese (I used Mozzarella)
- Toppings of your choice (I used spicy pan fried minced pork with cayenne, paprika, garlic and oregano)
BAKING INSTRUCTION: 15 mins (for the base alone, brushed with olive oil) + 5-10 mins (with toppings)
❗️*If you don't have access to a pandebono flour blend where you live, you can also use a mixture of cassava starch and cornflour. About 115g (1 cup) of cassava/tapioca starch + 60g (1/4 cup) cornflour. I've never actually tried it myself, but this is what's generally recommended.
- Pre-heat your oven to 200C (392F) and grease a pizza baking tray (I use fry light cooking spray for this).
- In a bowl, crumble both cheeses together with your hands and then add the rest of the ingredients (flour, baking powder, softened/room temperature butter and egg).
- Stir with a spoon until the pizza dough starts to come together, then carry on with your hands and knead until you have a smooth dough ball. NOTE: The dough should be a bit sticky, but still very easy to handle with your hands. If your dough is too dry – depending on what flour blend and cheeses you use, it’s possible – add a bit of milk, half a teaspoon at a time. If it’s too wet, you can add a little more flour.
- Divide your pan de bono pizza dough into however many pizzas you wish to make.
- Roll the dough until thin (in between a folded sheet of baking paper to prevent sticking) or simply flatten it your hands.
- Smooth away any cracks around the edges with your fingers and at this point you can also shape the outer crust. I like making the outer crust a bit raised/bulkier.
- Flip the pizza upside down on one hand and carefully peel away the baking paper.
- Place your pizza base on the baking tray and brush a bit of olive oil all over.
- Bake for 15 minutes on its own, until slightly golden.
- Add a generous amount of pizza sauce and the rest of your toppings, then bake for another 5 to 10 minutes, until the cheese is fully melted.