Pizza Buns

I took a bunch of new pictures. These turned out so much prettier.

Pizza Buns

How did I not think of this sooner?

You know how grocery store bakeries do pastries that are like pizza buns and cheese buns and stuff? When we lived in Vernon there was a store out on Westside Road called Little Kingdom and we’d take a drive out and have a treat every once in a while. They were these pizza buns. A spiral bun type thing with pizza sauce and cheese melted on top.

So, obviously for a couple of reasons we don’t eat those things anymore. First, because it’s not gluten free or vegan and second because we don’t live near there anymore.

I made this vegan and gluten-free version of pizza buns using my recipe for Basic Marinara Sauce and Daiya cheese shreds.

The dough is a basic bread recipe that is super simple to whip up, but it’s not super easy to work with. Consider this fair warning. You’ll want to really make sure to flour your work surface really, really well.

I was hesitant about posting the recipe as-is because I wanted to really work on the dough a bit more so it’s not so sticky. I think using the tapioca and corn starches is what makes the dough stickier than I’d like. But, it also makes the dough light and airy. So in the end, the recipe is here. As I keep on making these every now and then, I’ll likely make changes and post about those. For now, check it out below.

Update March 25, 2012:

I have updated this recipe to include an additional 1/4 cup brown rice flour to the dough. I’ve also added a video to show the technique for rolling and slicing these buns. I’m much happier with the results and I am sure you will be happy too!

4.8 from 6 reviews
Pizza Buns
  • 1 cup chana (chickpea) flour
  • 1 cup cornstarch
  • 1 cup tapioca starch
  • ¼ cup brown rice flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2½ teaspoons xanthan gum
  • 1½ tablespoons sugar
  • 2¼ teaspoons yeast
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 flax eggs*
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 - 1½ cup(s) prepared pizza sauce or marinara sauce**
  • 1 - 1½ cup(s) Daiya cheese shreds
  1. In the work bowl of your mixer, combine flours, xanthan gum, salt, sugar, yeast, Italian seasoning and garlic powder.
  2. Add flax egg, olive oil, vinegar, and water. Mix thoroughly.
  3. Lay out plastic wrap on work surface. Generously flour the plastic wrap with brown rice flour.
  4. Scrape batter onto plastic wrap. Generously flour the dough with brown rice flour then place another layer of plastic wrap over top.
  5. Lightly roll out dough with a rolling pin until it's about ¼" thick.
  6. Remove the top layer of plastic wrap. Gently spread pizza sauce over the entire rolled out surface. Sprinkle with Daiya cheese shreds.
  7. Using the plastic wrap to assist you, gently roll up like a cinnamon bun, trying to roll it as tightly as possible.
  8. Slice into 1" buns. (See my handy tip below.)
  9. Carefully move on to a parchment lined baking sheet with lots of room left between buns for rising.
  10. Let rise for about 30 minutes in a warm place.
  11. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  12. Bake for 15-20 minutes until lightly golden brown.
  13. Dust off excess brown rice flour before serving.

Pizza Bun Dough
use much more brown rice flour than shown here … much more

*Flax egg replacer recipe can be found here.

**Marinara sauce recipe can be found here.

These turned out so good for something that I just figured out in my little head.

Some Notes:

Like I mentioned above about the sticky dough, because I didn’t flour my surface nearly enough I had a messy looking bun. So, that’s why they’re not necessarily uniform looking here. But, I know that flouring the surfaces will do wonders to improve your results. So, don’t skimp on the brown rice flour. You can dust it off the finished buns when they come out of the oven.

You could spread more pizza sauce and/or sprinkle more Daiya cheese shreds on top as the buns are baking. I don’t think it needed it.

A handy tip to slice the buns nice and easily is to use unflavored dental floss. Slide the floss under the rolled up dough and measure 1″, then by pulling each end in opposite directions, use the floss to slice through the dough cleanly. (I hope I explained this clearly enough.)

Edited to add this handy video of the technique:

Pizza Buns

Guys, I’m so excited that this recipe has been featured by The Blender Girl’s website here and on the Daiya cheese website here.


  1. Vanessa says

    These look great! I am adding this recipe to a list of ones to try. I am wondering though if there is a way to make them without the cornstarch? Would you use more tapioca, or maybe potato starch? We can’t do corn here so hoping to try a substitution. Thanks!

    • Megan says

      Hey Vanessa, if I was to swap out cornstarch I’d use either tapioca starch or potato starch – I’d lean towards the tapioca starch personally. I hope that gives you decent results! Let me know how it turns out for you. (And don’t forget to flour that plastic wrap! I keep having bad dreams about how badly these stuck the first time I tried making these without flouring my surface enough. What a mess! Hahaha.)

  2. Grae says

    Ok…SERIOUSLY!!!! These are SOOOOOO good!!!

    I didn’t have all the various GF flours on hand, but had some Pamela’s and Bob’s Red Mill GF bread mixes, which have pretty close to the same flours you have listed in your recipe, so I thought I would give it a go anyway.

    Let me just say…YUMMMMM!!! I actually like daiya cheese, but my semi-vegetarian husband doesn’t like it at all, and yet, he loves these buns! Our 13 yr. old vegetarian took a bite, closed his eyes and grinned from ear to ear. And for me, the lone vegan of the bunch, I could “hear the heavenly chorus” haha. Something like cheesy pizza again….finally!

    What a nice treat to be able to make occasionally in our house, thank you so much for your efforts in creating this recipe and for sharing it!

  3. Grae says

    Oh, and the flax egg replacer- Yay! Thanks for that. I love to bake from time to time but stopped eating the things I made because I don’t want the eggs.

    Again, THANK YOU Megan! I am so lost some days knowing what to make now that we have gone gf and vegetarian-vegan. You are enabling someone who USED to love cooking, to love it once again.

  4. Andrea says

    THANK YOU for creating these. Our entire family, Celiac and non-Celiac loved them – they taste whole grain, which is a big treat. Made them last week, making them again today.

    • Megan says

      Hey Andrea! Thanks so much for stopping by to share such a nice comment. I’m glad these were a hit with your family!

  5. Grae says

    So just printing the recipe for the corn and potato chowder when I remembered THESE little GEMS! Must….make… buns! On to do list for this week. Yum! Thanks again Megan :)

  6. Lois Maxwell says

    This has been on my computer for a while. Our 49 yr old daughter is starting to have problems with gluten, so I tried to save most of these for her. I got the receipe for Pizza buns printed ok, but when I finely found the receipe for flax eggs, it wouldn’t print. Then I lost it. Could you please send it to my e-mail address. This set of receipes came in dated Oct. 15,2012.Thanks in advance. Lois M.

    • says

      I emailed you Lois but I’ll share it here too for anyone else who might not know: It’s super simple 1 tablespoon ground flax + 3 tablespoons of water. Whisk and let sit a few minutes to gel up a bit. Hope that helps!

  7. says

    What can I use in place of flax meal and the brown rice flour? Will applesauce and millet flour work or what do you suggest?

    I have an allergy to egg whites, but not egg yolks.

    thank you.


    • says

      The flax meal is used in this recipe as an egg replacer. Applesauce could work but it may sweeten the dough, even with using unsweetened applesauce. Can you have chia? Using the same ratio (1 Tablespoon chia + 3 Tablespoons water) you can get the equivalent of one egg. Another option would be to use powdered egg replacer prepared according to package directions.

      As for replacing the brown rice flour, I would suggest sorghum flour. Millet could work but it’s a heavier and more dense flour that may affect the lightness of the dough.

  8. Troy says

    Hey Megan!

    I’m excited to try this one out, seems perfect for cleaning up leftover sauce/daiya here! I am having trouble finding chickpea flour, the closest thing I could find at home according to what little I’ve learned in… 2 days of vegan baking… is quinoa flour – think I could swap that 1 for 1? Any other suggestions if not for replacing chickpea flour? My local stores seem fresh out.

    Thanks, loved the Garlic Breadsticks so I’m definitely coming back for more.

    • says

      Hi Troy,

      I don’t know how quinoa flour would work. It just might! If not, I’d suggest millet or lentil flour if you can find it. Garfava flour would work too. Any beany-starchy flour I think would be a good choice here.

  9. Troy says

    Hey there, I just made these, I had to go with quinoa flour but it worked really well. They were amazing, you are helping me get quite the reputation for baking and I’m thrilled cause I freakin love bread! I didn’t have any cheese, so for some extra flavor I spread your Italian Breadstick vegan margarine/parsely/garlic over them and we dipped them in some mushroom pasta sauce, they were so great. The floss idea was great too, it flabbergasted my grandmother, hah.

    Thanks again, loving your recipes, really helping me feel empowered and taking control of my own vegan/gluten free diet more and more, my wife appreciates it too of course :)

  10. Amy says

    Is there a substitute for yeast? These sound delicious and are almost edible on my diet! lol Please let me know because I would love to give this a try.

    • says

      I haven’t tried making this without yeast. I know some people have success with yeast-free baking using other leavening like baking powder. I just have very little experience with substituting yeast that I don’t even know where to start with a recommendation. Perhaps another reader/commenter might have a good suggestion. Anyone?

  11. Amanda says

    could you make these as disks instead of rolling them like cinnamon rolls? Seems like it would save on the work and be more like the grocery store type.

    • says

      You could give that a try Amanda. The dough might end up being a bit sticky to work with but it’s worth a try! Let me know how it goes. :)

  12. Shari says

    Hi Megan, Really enjoyed your video. It helps so much to see the actual step-by-step process and watch the dough as it is worked. Thank you for your efforts to share your talent with others.

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