Vegan Pizza with Tempeh Sausage
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Meet the vegan pizza of your dreams! I’ll teach you how to make the easiest and best homemade pizza dough that’s ready in under an hour. Top with spicy tempeh sausage crumbles, vegan cheese and your favorite vegetables!
Can you think of anything better than pizza night? I can’t! Homemade pizza has a quality and taste that take-out just can’t match.
This pizza with tempeh sausage is meaty, savory, and full of flavor. You can add all the toppings you want! The smoky and spicy vegan sausage goes great with a number of veggies, pizza sauce, and the soft crust.
Ingredients Needed (with substitutions)
- All-purpose flour – Feel free to make this recipe with half all-purpose and half whole-wheat flour, or make a whole wheat pizza dough instead. I haven’t tested this dough recipe with gluten-free flour, but an all-purpose gluten-free flour mix should work well.
- Instant yeast – Feel free to use regular yeast if that’s what you have at home. You’ll just need to let the dough rise for longer (about 1-2 hours).
- Sugar – To sweeten the pizza crust and feed the yeast.
- Warm water – The yeast will be killed if the water is too hot and won’t activate if too cold. Use your hand to feel the temperature.
- Tempeh – Tempeh is usually not gluten-free, so make sure to check the package first if you want to make a gluten-free pizza. Feel free to swap it out with barbecue tofu instead.
- Garlic, fennel seeds, dried basil, oregano, and red pepper flakes – These classic Italian seasonings add depth and flavor the tempeh sausage.
- Soy sauce – Use tamari or coconut aminos for a gluten-free option or vegan Worcestershire sauce to add a meaty flavor.
- Pizza sauce – You can use storebought tomato pizza sauce for this recipe, homemade or spread on homemade barbecue sauce instead.
How to make vegan pizza
You’ll be enjoying your pizza within an hour thanks to this easy process. To make your own homemade pizza, let’s start with the dough:
Homemade pizza dough
Making your own pizza dough is actually quite easy. You can use this recipe for not only pizza, but also garlic knots, cinnamon rolls, or breadsticks.
- To begin, add 1 cup of flour, yeast, sugar, and salt to a large bowl or stand mixer. Stir until well combined.
- Next, pour in the warm water and olive oil and stir well with a large spoon.
- Gradually add the rest of the flour, half a cup at a time, until the dough starts to form a ball and pulls away from the sides of the bowl.
- It should be a little sticky but not too wet to handle with your hands. The dough will still be a little shaggy at this point.
- If you are using a stand mixer with a dough hook, knead the dough for 2 to 3 minutes. If using your hands, transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and knead for 4 to 5 minutes. Do so until a cohesive ball is formed.
- Grease a large bowl with oil and place the kneaded dough inside. Cover with a kitchen towel and let the dough rise in a warm area for about 30 minutes or until it nearly doubles in size. Tip: Preheat the oven to 300ºF, then turn it off and set the bowl inside with the door slightly open.
Here is what the dough will look like once doubled:
Tempeh sausage crumbles
Make the tempeh sausage while the dough is rising.
- In a medium pan with a lid, crumble the tempeh and add a 1/2 cup of water. Steam, covered for about 5 minutes until nearly all the water has evaporated.
- Next, add the olive oil and remaining ingredients to the pan and cook, stirring frequently for 5 to 10 minutes. Remove from the heat.
Putting the pizza together
When the dough has risen, remove it from the oven (if using this method).
- Preheat the oven to 450ºF.
- Once the dough has risen, gently punch it with your fist so it deflates. Transfer it to a floured surface and roll out with a rolling pin or your hands until the dough fits your pizza pan. Fold over the edges to make a crust, if desired.
- Transfer the dough to your pizza pan. Put the pizza together by adding a layer of sauce, tempeh sausage, cheese, and more toppings as desired. Bake the pizza for 12 to 15 minutes or until the crust is golden brown and the cheese is melted. Slice and serve!
- Don’t forget the cheese! Shreddable Vegan Mozzarella, Stretchy Vegan Mozzarella, Vegan Parmesan, or store-bought vegan cheese shreds such as Daiya will all be delicious on top of the pizza.
- You can make it extra “meaty” by adding sliced pepperoni, tempeh or tofu bacon, or vegan taco meat.
- Looking for more topping suggestions? Use diced green bell pepper, sliced red onion, olives, mushrooms, diced tomatoes, or pineapple on the pizza.
Making it ahead of time
You can make the pizza dough a day ahead of time. Prepare the dough and let it rise, then punch it down and form into a ball. Cover the dough and place it in the refrigerator until you’re ready to use.
You can freeze the dough as well by preparing it as usual. Form the dough into a ball, then coat in olive oil and place in a freezer-safe bag or container. To thaw, leave the frozen dough in the refrigerator overnight.
More pizza recipes you’ll love
Tempeh Sausage was adapted from this cookbook, Vegan with a Vengeance. It was one of my first vegan cookbooks over 10 years ago, and is still one of my favorites!
Vegan Pizza with Tempeh Sausage
Tempeh sausage crumbles
- 8 ounce package tempeh
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons fennel seeds
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon red chili pepper flakes
- 2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
For the pizza dough
- In a large bowl or stand mixer, add 1 cup of the flour, yeast, sugar and salt and stir until well combined.
- Now pour in the warm water and olive oil and stir well with a large spoon.
- Gradually add the rest of the flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until the dough starts to form a ball and pull away from the sides of the bowl. It should be a little sticky but not too wet. You should be able to handle it with your hands.
- If you are using a stand mixer with a dough hook, knead the dough for 2-3 minutes. If you are not using a mixer, transfer to a lightly floured surface and knead with your hands for 4-5 minutes, until a cohesive ball is formed.
- Grease a large bowl with oil, and place the dough in it. Cover with a towel and let the dough rise for about 30 minutes until it doubles in size. I preheat the oven to 300, then turn it off and set the bowl inside, with the door slightly open.
While the dough rises, make the tempeh sausage and prepare all toppings
- In a medium pan with a lid, crumble the tempeh small and add 1/2 cup of water. Steam, covered for about 5 minutes until nearly all the water has evaporated.
- Now add the olive oil and remaining ingredients to the pan and cook, stirring frequently for 5-10 minutes. Remove from heat. Prepare all vegetables by slicing/chopping, get out your pizza sauce and vegan cheese of choice.
Roll out the dough and make pizza!
- Preheat the oven to 450 degrees when the dough is nearly risen.
- Once the dough has risen, gently punch the dough to deflate it, transfer to a floured surface and roll out the dough to fit your pizza pan. I use a rolling pin, you could also just use your hands. Fold over the edges to make a crust, if desired.
- Transfer the dough to your pizza pan, add sauce and toppings as desired. Bake pizza for 12-15 minutes, until the crust is golden brown and the cheese is melted. Slice and serve!
- Whole grain: Feel free to substitute half or all of the all purpose flour with whole wheat or white whole wheat flour, if desired.
- Gluten free: The pizza dough should work quite well with a gluten free all purpose flour mix, but I haven’t tested it. Tempeh is not usually gluten free, so check the package.
- You can substitute regular yeast instead of instant, but you will need to let the dough rise for longer, about 2 hours.
- Make ahead: You can make this a day ahead of time. Prepare the dough and let it rise, then punch it down and form into a ball. Place covered in the refrigerator until ready to use.
- Freeze: Freeze by preparing the dough until it’s a ball, then coat in olive oil and place in a freeze friendly bag or container. When ready to use, let thaw in the refrigerator overnight.
- Nutrition facts are an estimate only and will vary greatly depending on how much vegan cheese you use, what kind you use, how much tempeh sausage you put on your pizza, etc.
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