One of my earliest memories is my teacher asking the whole class what our favorite food was. Almost everyone answered pizza! Whether it’s the hearty tomato sauce, the almost guilty use of cheese, or the tossed pizza dough… a good pizza has something for everyone.
In today’s article, I’m going to talk about the five most popular styles of pizza. If you find yourself in any of the areas where these are famous, do yourself a favor and make ordering a slice a priority.
- New York Style
There is absolutely nothing like a real New York pizza. And for some reason, it doesn’t taste the same anywhere else – even if it has the same ingredients! New York style pizza is made for grab and go.
Generally, it’s sold by the massive slice. Piping hot and dripping with cheese. This pizza is made for people on the go. But do you know the history behind it? Most people don’t.
New York isn’t just the home of a delicious style of pizza… it’s basically the birthplace of American pizza as a whole! As legend has it, the first pizza in the USA was created by an Italian named Gennaro Lombardi.
Originally, the pizzas would sell by the whole pie. However, during hard times, people couldn’t afford the whole pie. So pizza companies invented the idea of selling their pizzas by the slice.
It’s also said that originally, the sauce was on top and the cheese was on the bottom. Whether this was once the case, it certainly isn’t any more.
- Chicago Style
Chicago… home of the deep-dish pizza, baby. Chicago has turned pizza into something of its own. Baked to perfection in a deep pan, Chicago pizza towers over any other kind. It’s often stuffed to the absolute brim with all kinds of toppings. Pepperoni, olives, peppers, sausage, onions, and meatballs commonly make up the inside of this behemoth.
Even though Chicago is the deepest dish pizza, that’s just the start of what makes it unique. Because the crust is so thick, the pizza needs to be cooked between 30 – 45 minutes long. Ordinarily, this would burn the cheese. Because of this, a Chicago pizza is layered “upside down”. The cheese goes on the bottom. And all the other toppings go into the middle. Finally, it’s covered with an incredibly hearty tomato sauce. The end result is almost impossible to eat without a fork!
Now, we don’t know who invented the Chicago pizza. Many people report it was originally invented at Pizzeria Uno in 1943.
When it comes to making pizza unique, Chicago can’t be beat.
- California Style
There’s something magical about California. From world-class beaches to Hollywood, everything in California has a special aura to it. And the pizza is no different!
California pizza is a fusion of New York and Italian styles. It generally features a very thin and light crust… perfect for enjoying on the beach. Somewhat of an opposite to Chicago style, there is generally less sauce and cheese, for an overall lighter experience. You will also find all kinds of unique toppings on California pizzas. From artichokes to broccoli, nothing is off limits on a delicious California pizza.
Unlike Chicago and New York Pizza, California pizza was invented in the 80s. by Ed LaDou (the “prince of Pizza”). He had originally learned how to make pizza in New York. After moving to California, he once again started to make pizza… but this time with his own creative twists. Today
Today, California pizza is popular all over the world.
- Sicilian Pizza
If you’re looking for a more traditional pizza, you can’t go wrong with Sicilian. Sicily is a large Mediterranean island off the cost of Italy. The original Sicilian pizza was called Sfincione, which can be translated to “thick sponge”.
These pizzas are usually small, rectangular shapes. They are cut into 3-4 pieces in total. The original recipe for Sicilian Pizza likely used an Italian yeast bread, backed on a flat pan.
Then, in the early 1900s, when many Sicilians migrated to the USA, they brought their recipe with them. And now, it’s become one of the most popular pizzas in the world.
- Detroit Style
Detroit style pizza is made with a thick, crisp crust. It comes in a square with anywhere from 4-8 pieces per pie. It most commonly features meats like ham, sausage, pepperoni, and vegetables like mushrooms and olives.
The recipe originated from the heart of Detroit in 1946. The pizza was so delicious it spread far and wide throughout the city. And now, Detroit is famous for it.
I’m a pizza lover, and chances are… you are too. If you can try any of these pizzas where they were invented, I can promise you – you are in for a treat!