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Roasted Pumpkin & Mushroom Pizza with Cashew & Basil Pesto and Simple Rocket Salad

A few years ago a client came to me with pre-diabetes, high blood pressure and triglyceride levels through the roof. He told me he wanted to go plant-based to reverse his Type 2 Diabetes. 5 breaths later he also advised he would like to keep eating Dominos pizza, but that he'd order vegan so, "would that would be ok?". ⁠

Know this, a vegan diet in itself isn't enough to reverse high fasting blood glucose levels and/or any other metabolic condition. If the body is being fuelled by processed carbohydrates it doesn't matter how vegan that Dominos pizza is, the pre-diabetes will become diabetes and the high triglycerides will remain, if not get worse. ⁠

This Roasted Pumpkin & Mushroom Pizza with Cashew & Basil Pesto and Simple Rocket Salad is for him, and for you, the person who wants to do plant based the right way - Nutritionelly. ⁠


Ingredients (serves 2)

½ japanese pumpkin

2 portobello mushrooms

300ml tinned whole tomatoes

2 tbsp tomato paste

1 clove garlic, crushed

1 tablespoon capers, roughly chopped

10 kalamata olives, seeded and roughly chopped

1 tomato, halved and thinly sliced

½ tbsp extra virgin olive oil

2 gluten free wraps or pizza bases - I recommend GF Precinct if in Australia

2 tbsp nutritional yeast

Sea salt

Basil pesto

150g basil leaves washed and torn

2 tbsp nutritional yeast

1 clove garlic (optional)

120g raw cashews (soaked for between 15 minutes - 4 hours and drained)

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

10 tbsp warm water

1 tsp apple cider vinegar

Simple Rocket Salad

2 handfuls rocket

handful of basil leaves (if any left-over)

100g baby tomatoes

2 tbsp fermented cabbage or beetroot

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Sea salt


Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.

Slice pumpkin into rough shapes, no thicker than ½ cm and mushrooms to the same width. Place in a roasting pan, top with olive oil and a pinch of salt, roast for about 15 minutes or until the vegies soften. Be sure to check and turn the vegies half-way through.

While the vegies are cooking, prepare the pizza base sauce. Place canned tomatoes, tomato paste, garlic and capers in a bowl. Stir to break up the tomatoes and combine the ingredients.

Next, prepare the basil pesto. Place cashews in the blender and blend until a meal like consistency is formed.

Add all other ingredients except the water, add 1 tbsp water and blend.

Add the rest of the water slowly until you reach a slightly runny consistency. Set aside.

By now the roast vegetables should be ready, so begin to assemble your pizzas. Spread the sauce between two of your chosen your pizza bases.

Top each base with roasted veg, sliced tomatoes and kalamata olives. Sprinkle with nutritional yeast.

Cook in the over for 15 minutes. Be sure to check on them halfway through.

While cooking, assemble the salad. Place rocket, basil leaves and olive oil in a large bowl and with clean hands massage until the leaves are coated in oil.

Add fermented veg, baby tomatoes and top with a pinch of salt.

Once the pizzas are warmed through and the nutritional yeast has melted, your pizzas are ready to serve.

Top with at least 2 tbsp pesto and serve with Simple Rocket Salad.

If you have any pesto left over, it’ll be perfect as a salad dressing or dip the next day.

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