Vegan Rosemary Pesto Pizza with Potatoes and Caramelized Leeks

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A little twist on a French Pizza

Watch me cook this French vegan pizza

This Vegan Rosemary Pesto Pizza with Potatoes and Caramelized Leeks was a savory delightful find. There were some modifications and experimentations to get this just right. Definitely a nice change to ordinary pizza. I am still playing around with some extra add ons but I really like what I created in this version. The savory rosemary makes this a worthy side dish or main course to the Holiday season. But! It truly stands on its own for pizza night year round in our house.

How To Make Rosemary Pesto

I love this Rosemary Pesto! It has been a challenge to make this without it being too bitter. Rosemary can be very intense. Toning it down with parsley has really helped. I use arugula to add a little bit to the blend. Arugula is bitter but somehow it works with this Rosemary Pesto creation.

I feel the secret to a great pesto is how fresh the herbs are. When picking out the rosemary make sure the rosemary is not turning brown. It is so easy to just pick up a container in the store and not check how fresh it is. Once you start looking for these fresh signs you will look at it in everything you buy. Plus check for expiration dates. Thats a must!

The trick with pesto is the food processor. ( I use the Hamilton Beach Food Processor) It is much easier than a blender. When using the food processor (or blender) make sure to pulse the pesto mixture. Stop and scrape the sides and pulse again until you get the right consistency. Add the olive oil right before your last pulse or two. This helps keep the pesto course and less liquified. You don’t want to create a sauce. Pesto is best when course so that you can taste all the pronounced separate flavors.

How to make Vegan Rosemary Pesto Pizza with Potatoes and Caramelized Leeks

I like this Vegan Rosemary Pesto Pizza with Potatoes and Caramelized Leeks on a flatbread type of dough. Being that the pesto is more savory than an acidic sauce like a pizza sauce I feel it works better on a thinner crust. I can taste more of the subtle flavors this way.

I find that red potatoes work very well with this pizza. They can really keep their shape and not fall apart like most potatoes do. I slice them about 1/3 of an inch with skins on and steam them for 7 minutes. The leeks are cut a little thicker and fried in olive oil to caramelize on each side.

I put the rosemary pesto on the pizza first like you would with regular tomato pizza sauce. I do not put it on very thick because pesto is very strong in taste. Then layer the potatoes over the pesto and caramelized leeks, sliced Spanish green olives (gives a nice salty flavor) and sliced cherry tomatoes. Other options that I enjoy are capers and hot sliced red cherry peppers. Spray the pizza with oil and sprinkle ground black pepper on it. After it comes out of the oven, add red pepper flakes, fresh arugula, a little squeeze of lemon and drizzle with your best extra virgin olive oil. Try my vegan Crispy Quinoa Parmesan thats with my Smoky Garlic Potato Wedges recipe for a vegan cheesy topping on the pizza. I hope you love this Vegan Rosemary Pesto Pizza with Potatoes and Caramelized Leeks as much as we do. Enjoy!

How To Make Vegan Rosemary Pesto Pizza With Potatoes And Caramelized Leeks. Photo by Spicy Saucy Vegan
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Vegan Rosemary Pesto Pizza with Potatoes and Caramelized Leeks

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  • Author: Spicy Saucy Vegan
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Category: Appetizer, Main Course, Side Dish
  • Method: Food Processor/Bake
  • Cuisine: French
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

This is a very unusual type of pizza but truly one to add to your list for family pizza night. This rosemary pesto adds a very savory punch to this pizza adding a lot of pizzazz for full flavor. Add a bit of hot cherry peppers, capers, arugula and a twist of lemon to really make it pop!


Ingredients

Units Scale

Flatbread Dough

  • 1 tsp Active Dry Yeast
  • 1 tsp Sugar
  • 3/4 cup Warm Water (between 100 – 110°F or 38 -43°C)
  • 2 cups All-purpose Flour or Bread Flour (spooned and leveled plus more if needed for hands and surface)
  • 1 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 tsp Sea Salt

Rosemary Pesto

  • 1 cup Parsley (packed)
  • 1 cup Walnuts
  • 1/2 cup Arugula (packed)
  • 1/4 cup Rosemary (packed)
  • 2 Lg Cloves Garlic
  • 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
  • 1/4 tsp Ground Black Pepper
  • 1/2 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Pizza Toppings

  • 4 med Red Potatoes (leave skins on)
  • 1 Lg Leek
  • 2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 10 to 12 Cherry Tomatoes (slice in half)
  • 5 to 6 Whole Spanish Green Olives (sliced in three)
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil (spray)
  • Ground Black Pepper
  • 1 Tbsp Capers (optional)

Pizza Topping after it’s Cooked

  • Fresh Arugula
  • Capers (optional)
  • Red Pepper Flakes
  • Hot Sliced Cherry peppers (optional)
  • Twist of Lemon (small amount)
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil (to drizzle on top)


Instructions

Flatbread Dough

  1. In a medium bowl add the active dry yeast, sugar and warm water. Stir softly. Set aside in warm space with towel over it for 5 minutes. The yeast should come to the top and be a little foamy. This shows the yeast is good and active.
  2. In a large Bowl add the flour and salt and mix together with a spoon. Make a hole in the mound of flour (called a well) for the yeast mixture to sit in. Pour the yeast mixture in it and olive oil.
  3. Slowly pull the flour from the sides of the mound of the well into the yeast and oil mixture and blend together. Use a spoon until it gets too thick and then finish mixing the dough with your hands. Knead the dough until it is fully mixed together or until it looks a smoother texture. Place in an oiled large bowl and put in a warm place with a towel over it. Let rise for 45 minutes.

Rosemary Pesto

  1. In a large food processor ( I use the Hamilton Beach Food Processor) add the parsley, walnuts, arugula, rosemary, garlic, sea salt and black pepper. Pulse 3 times and scrap the sides of the food processor and pulse again.
  2. Add the extra virgin olive oil and pulse 2 to 3 more times until it is the consistency you desire. It should have a noticeable texture to it. Set aside until the pizza dough is ready and spread out on pizza stone or pizza pan.

Pizza Toppings

  1. Wash and scrub the red potatoes. Cut into ⅓ inch slices. Put into a steamer and steam for 7 minutes. When done take off of heat and take out the potatoes to cool.
  2. Clean the leaks and cut off the root end and the green long ends. Wash the end with the green ends very well because dirt can be in there. Slice the leeks at ½ inch slices.
  3. Heat large frying pan on medium high heat. Add 2 Tbsp of Olive oil. Add the leeks and cook the leeks until brown and caramelized on each side. When done take out and set aside.
  4. Heat your oven to 450°
  5. When dough has finished rising spread out over your pizza pan or pizza stone.
  6. Add enough pesto to the dough to cover your pizza.
  7. Add the steamed potatoes on top of the pesto then the leeks, cherry tomatoes (cut in half), Spanish green olives (sliced) and capers.
  8. When you are done putting the toppings on spray the whole pizza with olive oil spray or your favorite oil spray. Add a light dusting of ground black pepper to the whole pizza.
  9. Put the pizza in the preheated oven at 450° for 15 minutes.

Pizza Topping after it’s Cooked

  1. After the pizza comes out of the oven add red pepper flakes, more capers (optional), sliced red cherry peppers, fresh arugula and a lite squeeze of lemon over the whole pizza. Last, drizzle the pizza with extra virgin olive oil.
    Be mindful that the arugula will wilt. If you are waiting for guest put the squeezed fresh lemon, olive oil and arugula on right before cutting. You can also leave these toppings off and have your guest add them to their own pizza to build it themselves. Enjoy!

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