Smoky White Pizza Sauce

This vegan pizza features a white smoky homemade pizza sauce UNrecipe that is positively addicting. It's a simple nutritious sauce that satisfies a pizza craving.

Don't you just LOVE pizza? Me too. I could eat it every day for every meal for the rest of my life.

But sadly, most pizza places don't offer a vegan pizza, complete with tons-o-vegetables and non-dairy cheese. But you can make the best vegan pizza right at home. And it's easy and fun, and always has the amount of toppings you want -- can most pizza places say that?

Back when I went vegan (1994) there weren't any of the fun non-dairy cheeses that are out now, so my pizzas were pretty much cheeseless -- which, by the way, can be fabulous (and usually works on a thicker crust).

These days, you can find non-dairy cheeses in most natural foods stores, but most of them are expensive, and many of them aren't vegan since they contain casein (a milk protein). Those that ARE vegan, are usually lacking in something, whether it's taste or the ooey gooey consistency of cheese -- although there are more and more making an appearance that are coming pretty close to the real thing. Much better to learn how to make your own sauces from scratch with the ingredients you have on hand.

Now, please know, this is a delectable white sauce, but it's not going to be stretchy or salty or greasy, like cow's milk cheese. This is simply a nutritious and delicious white sauce that will help to satisfy your pizza craving, and can actually be quite addictive!

Since "quick" is the operative word here, buy a pre-made pizza crust. I always have some in the freezer ready to go for a pizza emergency. In particular, I like those with cornmeal in them (Vicolo makes a fantastic one -- ask your store to carry it), but any ol' vegan pizza crust will do.

And if you can't find plain pizza crusts, then feel free to buy a basic pre-made veggie pizza with no cheese, and then add your own toppings.

Note: This is truly a homemade pizza sauce recipe because I am simply giving you the list of ingredients without exact amounts to use of each ingredient. What kind of coach would I be if I always handed everything over to you on a silver platter? (tee-hee)

It will be fun for you to stretch your cooking intuition muscles. Add a little of this and a little of that until it's juuuuuust right for your tastebuds.

Don't worry -- it will be fun and you really can't make any mistakes because everything is based on the flavors YOU love.

Smoky White Sauce

Cashews (I usually start with 3 gigantic handfuls)
Lemon juice
Coconut nectar
Nutritional yeast
Onion powder
Garlic powder
Tamari soy sauce
Extra-virgin olive oil
Liquid Smoke
Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
Water, to desired consistency

1. Okay, so there's the list of ingredients. Start by adding the cashews to a blender.

2. Next, add the following ingredients, a little at a time, remembering that you can always add more later to balance the flavors. The lemon juice, coconut nectar and nutritional yeast I would add by the Tablespoon or two, and the onion and garlic powders, Tamari, and oil I would add by the teaspoon or two. What you're doing here is building the flavor of the sauce one ingredient at a time.

Be especially careful with the Liquid Smoke -- you really only need a touch (about 1/4 tsp or less).

Taste as you go - does it need to be more sour? Then add more lemon juice. More salty? Add more Tamari or sea salt.

3. Add water VERY slowly -- at this point you need only enough water to allow your sauce to blend easily.

4. When you have the taste just right, continue to add water to reach the desired consistency. You'll be surprised at how little water you need to make this pourable, which is your goal. Be VERY careful about adding too much water -- if it's too thin, it won't firm up in the heat of the oven.

5. Now your pizza crust is ready to be decorated. Spread some of your favorite marinara over the crust. Pour or dollop white sauce over the marinara, spreading it with a spoon if desired.

6. Top with your favorite ingredients. I love, love, love olives, so I used both green and black olives (healthy fats!). A little chopped onion and some raw spinach and my pizza was ready to be baked. Follow package directions for the length of time your crust should bake, usually 400-450F for 10-15 minutes.

Your sauce will thicken up a bit and turn a beautiful rich golden color.

And don't be sad if your sauce doesn't turn out right the first time you make it. Try, try again. Play with your food!    :)

I usually make two pizzas, one for me with my fave toppings, and one for Jeff with his favorites.

Leftovers freeze beautifully, but they usually don't stick around that long!

Happy Cooking!

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