White Bean, Caramelized Onion, and Vegan Sausage Pizza

by Kelly on October 13, 2008

As is always the case when I’ve been away from the kitchen for a little while, I was excited to get back to cooking and whip up something fabulous. As planned, I decided to create a vegan pizza inspired by a recipe from one of my favorite local chefs, Todd English. I was intrigued by his recipe for White Bean and Asiago Pizza because I was convinced that this pizza could hold its own even without the cheese. That’s saying a lot coming a cheese lover. Yes, I could have used a cheese substitute like Teese or Follow Your Heart Vegan Gourmet. However, I wanted to prove to myself that I could make a pizza without anything resembling cheese and still be 100% satisfied. Additionally, vegan cheese substitutes can be a bit pricey and they defeated what I loved about this recipe, which was its affordability. With the exception of the organic arugula, every ingredient that went into this recipe was either something I had on hand, or something I could pick up cheaply at the grocery store.
The original recipe called for baking a crust topped with a mixture of cheeses and caramelized onions. After being baked, it would be drizzled with hummus and topped with arugula. In making this pizza vegan, I decided to switch up the method a bit. I decided to schmear a generous layer of the hummus on the pizza dough and top with caramelized onions, tomatoes, and crumbles of my homemade vegan sausage before baking in the oven. After the crust had crisped up in the oven and the toppings warmed through, I finished it off with a mixture of local arugula that had been tossed in a roasted garlic vinaigrette.
The result was scrumptious and didn’t leave me missing cheese at all. What I love about this recipe is the contrast in flavor and texture. The hummus is so creamy that it pairs perfectly with the crisp texture of the crust. The salad mixture on top is wonderful fresh and adds a great balance to the richness of the hummus, onions, and sausage. The only downside to this recipe is that between the caramelized onions, roasted garlic, hummus, and sausage there are quite a few components to prepare. However, I found that by preparing the components ahead of time assembling the pizza was quick and stress-free. You could also cut down on prep time by using pre-made or packaged versions of the sausage and hummus.  It’s definitely a recipe that accommodates variations and shortcuts. But however you make it, this pizza is a delicious cheeseless dinner that balances nutrition and indulgence.
White Bean, Caramelized Onion, and Vegan Sausage Pizza
Yields 2 pizzas, serving 3-4 people
Ingredients:
- 2 pizza rounds (I like to use 1/2 of this recipe.)
- Cornmeal for sprinkling
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 2 pinches kosher salt
- 2 pinches black pepper
-1 recipe White Bean Hummus (See below.)
- 1/3 cup caramelized onions
- 1 medium tomato, chopped
-2 vegan sausages, chopped
- 1 1/2 bunches arugula leaves, well washed and dried
-2 tablespoons bottled balsamic vinaigrette
-1 clove roasted garlic, chopped 

Method:
One hour prior to cooking, place a baking stone in the oven and preheat it to 500?F.
Roll out 1 pizza round as thinly as possible. Place it on a pizza peel sprinkled with cornmeal. Cover the surface with 1 teaspoon oil and 1 pinch each salt and pepper. Be sure to leave an outer lip of 1 inch all the way around.
Evenly spread half the hummus over the dough. Top with half the caramelized onions, tomatoes, and sausage.
Shake the paddle lightly and slide the pizza onto the baking stone. Bake until browned, 6 to 7 minutes.  While pizza is baking, whisk together the dressing and roasted garlic clove.  Toss the arugula in the dressing to coat.  After pizza has been removed from the oven, evenly cover with 1/2 the arugula mixture.
Serve immediately.
Repeat with the remaining dough.
White Bean Hummus
Ingredients:
- 2 cups cooked white cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
- 3 cloves roasted garlic, finely chopped
- 1/4 to 1/2 cup water
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin, or more to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon Hungarian paprika
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt

Method:
Place the beans and garlic in a food processor fitted with a steel blade and process until smooth. While the machine is running, gradually add the remaining ingredients and process until smooth.
Serve immediately, or cover and refrigerate up to 3 days.

I am sharing this as my entry for this month’s My Legume Love Affair, conceived by Susan of The Well Seasoned Cook.  October’s event is hosted by Sra of When My Soup Came Alive.  I encourage all lovers of legumes to join in the fun.
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{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

VeggieGirl October 14, 2008 at 12:59 am

Mmm, pizza!

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River October 14, 2008 at 3:58 am

YUM!! So much goodness piled up! The homemade vegan sausage looks so good too!!
Thank you for sharing the recipe! :)

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Zesty Cook October 14, 2008 at 1:06 pm

WOW – I am all over this!! Looks amazing. Great picture. I am a huge pink apron fan… i mean the blog not the article of clothing :)

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Kelly October 14, 2008 at 1:59 pm

Veggiegirl – I know. What could be better on a chilly fall night.
River – I know. It was quite the mouthful. I had to fold it up like a taco to avoid losing the arugula and even then it was messy. :-)
Zesty Cook – Awww I am flattered. Thanks for the compliment.

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VeganView October 14, 2008 at 4:23 pm

OOOhhhh that pizza looks amazing! I am so glad you found my blog so I can follow yours now, I love it!

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Kelly October 14, 2008 at 7:59 pm

Thanks VeganView. I appreciate it. :-)

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Jeni Treehugger October 14, 2008 at 8:50 pm

Oooh yummers!
That looks well nice.

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HangryPants October 15, 2008 at 1:46 am

I love caramelized onions on pizza. This looks delicious. You’re doing such a great job with vegan month.

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Kelly October 15, 2008 at 2:06 am

Jeni – Thanks.
Hangrypants – Thanks for the encouragement. You were my inspiration!

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Joanna October 15, 2008 at 11:09 pm

i can’t even remember the last time i had pizza. i like the combination of flavors you have. i have yet to try vegan sausages!!!

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Happy Herbivore! October 15, 2008 at 11:57 pm

O.M.G!!!!!!!

I am making this. ASAP. Off to the store for ingredients…

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baliwhat October 16, 2008 at 3:27 am

Ooh, I was just contemplating what to do with the pizza dough I have to use up soon. This sounds like a good idea!

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Kelly October 16, 2008 at 3:31 am

Joanna- Vegan sausages are so worth it and there are so many variations online I am sure you will find a recipe that incorporates your favorite flavors.
HappyHerbivore – Your recipes are amazing so I am very flattered.
Baliwhat – I love the problem of leftover pizza dough. :-)

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A World in a PAN October 16, 2008 at 3:40 am

Wow, I have never seen or tasted such a pizaa!

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Eesh October 16, 2008 at 3:42 am

That looks really amazing! I love pizza and also like to find satisfying ways of eating it without the cheese substitutes. Mostly because I don’t like the cheese substitutes.

And you’ve been tagged! :)

http://craftyveg.blogspot.com/2008/10/vegan-mofo-15-whats-in-my-vegan-freezer.html

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Jes October 16, 2008 at 1:23 pm

That pizza looks delish! The white bean idea sounds fantastic…

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Kelly October 16, 2008 at 1:47 pm

A World in a Pan – Thank you.
Eeesh – I agree. Plus there are so many amazing flavors that can be created with naturally vegan ingredients that it seems silly to think you can’t create a flavorful pizza without cheese.
Jes – Thank you. Thanks to Todd English I’ve become addicted to white bean hummus. And given the state of the economy, dried beans will be coming in handy in my kitchen

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Bethany October 19, 2008 at 11:28 pm

looks really good. I love how you’re using your sausages.

I first heard of hummus pizza through the everyday dish DVD. I finally tried it and I love mine with pineapple, basil and red peppers on top. yummy!!!

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sra October 23, 2008 at 4:53 am

This sounds very good, would have loved to get a taste of it. Thanks for the entry!

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Kelly October 23, 2008 at 3:04 pm

Thanks for visiting. I can’t wait to see the round up.

Reply

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