The Ultimate Guide to Different Types of Pizza Across America
The U.S. has wide-ranging regional pizza styles. From deep dish to tomato pie, these are some of the most popular and unique types of pizza.
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New York-Style Pizza
First created by immigrants from Naples, Italy, this type of pizza features a thin, hand-tossed crust. New York-style pizza is typically cut into triangles and often sold by the slice—and many people fold it in half before taking a bite.
Traditional Toppings for New York-Style Pizza
Classic New York-style pizza toppings are simple: marinara sauce and shredded mozzarella cheese. (But if you’re looking to add something else to your slice, consider picking your pizza topping based on your zodiac sign.)
Where to Get New York-Style Pizza
There are serious debates about where to get the best New York-style pizza, but popular joints include Joe’s Pizza and Ben’s Pizzeria, which are just blocks away from each other in Greenwich Village. (Joe’s Pizza ships nationwide through a service called Goldbelly.)
Chicago Deep-Dish Pizza
Since Chicago is famously the “Windy City,” it seems to have opted for a pizza heavy enough to stay on your plate during a tornado. The whole pizza is 1 to 2 inches thick, and it’s the only type of pizza you have to eat with a knife and fork.
Traditional Toppings for Chicago Deep-Dish Pizza
A Chicago deep-dish pizza has a thick crust and is topped with mozzarella, meat and vegetables. The tomato sauce goes on last. Crumbled Italian sausage is a popular Chicago topping in addition to other classic pizza toppings like pepperoni, mushrooms and peppers.
Where to Get Chicago Deep-Dish Pizza
Wondering what type of pizza is square? Here’s your answer: Detroit-style pizza was created when someone started using metal trays (that originally held small factory parts) to cook this rectangular deep-dish pizza. This type of pizza is similar to Chicago deep-dish because it’s incredibly thick and has tomato sauce on top. Classic Detroit pizza is also baked not once but twice for perfectly caramelized cheese.
Traditional Toppings for Detroit-Style Pizza
More so than specific toppings, Detroit pizza is known for having sauce on top of the cheese—it’s often applied in stripes across the pizza. Meat toppings like pepperoni are sometimes layered directly on top of the crust, under the cheese.
Where to Get Detroit-Style Pizza
You can get a Detroit pizza from Detroit Style Pizza Company—they also ship their pizzas nationwide through Goldbelly. (It’s also pretty easy to make your own; just avoid these common homemade pizza mistakes.)
St. Louis-Style Pizza
St. Louis-style pizza has an unleavened, super-crispy crust and sliced (never diced) toppings. The sauce is almost sweet and instead of mozzarella, it features “provel”—a blend of provolone, Swiss and white cheddar. This type of pizza is typically served with a “party cut”—a round pizza cut into squares.
Traditional Toppings for St. Louis-Style Pizza
As mentioned, St. Louis-style pizza is known for being topped with provel, a unique cheese blend. (Learn more about provel and other surprising regional foods you’ve never heard of.) As for other toppings, you might see full strips of bacon in addition to the usual meat and vegetable choices.
Where to Get St. Louis-Style Pizza
You can get St. Louis-style pizza from Imo’s Pizza, which has locations throughout Missouri, Kansas and Illinois, and ships nationwide through Goldbelly. Many St. Louis pizzerias (including Imo’s) also famously serve toasted ravioli.
Philadelphia Tomato Pie
Hailing from Philadelphia, tomato pie is an Italian-style type of pizza that has a thick, square crust topped with chunky tomato sauce. It rarely has cheese.
The term “tomato pie” can refer to many different things. Don’t confuse it with Trenton tomato pie, which is a type of pizza that has a round, thin crust with cheese in the middle and sauce on top. (There’s also Southern-style Tomato Pie, which is made in a pie crust with fresh tomatoes, cheddar cheese, mayo and bacon.)
Traditional Toppings for Philadelphia Tomato Pie
Philadelphia tomato pie is famously bare when it comes to toppings—it typically just has tomato sauce and maybe a sprinkle of cheese.
Where to Get Philadelphia Tomato Pie
You can get authentic tomato pie at Italian bakeries throughout the Philadelphia area.
Dreamed up by Ed LaDou, the chef behind California Pizza Kitchen, this type of pizza is made for those who prefer their pizza fancy, thank you very much. Served up on thin, chewy hand-tossed crust, this pizza style has made waves all over the U.S.
Traditional Toppings for California-Style Pizza
You’ll find a California-style pizza topped with all sorts of non-traditional ingredients, such as smoked salmon, Peking duck, goat cheese, arugula and more.
Where to Get California-Style Pizza
You can make California-style pizza yourself—check out our California Pizza Kitchen copycat recipes. You can also often find California-style pizzas at (typically more upscale) restaurants that serve California cuisine.
(Looking to make your own? Check out the best pizza recipes from across America.)
Quad City-Style Pizza
Hailing from a group of cities in eastern Iowa and western Illinois, Quad City-style pizza features malt in the crust. This secret ingredient gives this type of pizza a toasty, nutty flavor. And with chili flakes and ground cayenne in the sauce, Quad City pizza might have more of a kick than you’re used to.
Traditional Toppings for Quad City-Style Pizza
You can get just about any topping you’d like on Quad City-style pizza, but purists opt for the signature lean sausage cooked with fennel.
(Craving pizza yet? Take a look at our most popular pizza recipes.)
Where to Get Quad City-Style Pizza
If you’re near the Quad Cities, it’s worth stopping at Frank’s Pizzeria or Harris Pizza. You can also get Quad City-style pizza at Roots Handmade Pizza in Chicago.
Ohio Valley Pizza
We hope you’re ready for one of the strangest types of pizza on our list! Pizza makers in the Ohio Valley put their toppings (often including the cheese) on after the main pizza is cooked. This doesn’t mean the toppings are fully cold, though—the heat from the fresh pizza cooks them to perfection, especially when left to steam inside the pizza box. That’s not the only difference—Ohio Valley pizza has stewed tomatoes instead of sauce.
Traditional Toppings for Ohio Valley Pizza
With Ohio Valley pizza, the important thing is that the toppings go on after the pizza comes out of the oven. Traditional toppings include shredded provolone cheese, pepperoni and banana peppers.
(Speaking of toppings, these are the best pizza toppings you haven’t tried yet.)
Where to Get Ohio Valley Pizza
This style of pizza is made in a square pan, cut into squares and sold by the slice. You can get Ohio Valley pizza throughout eastern Ohio, western Pennsylvania and in parts of West Virginia.
New Haven-Style Pizza
This type of pizza (known locally as “apizza”) is popular in the New Haven, Connecticut, area. With Neapolitan roots, it’s similar to New York pizza, but New Haven-style pizza is known for its oblong shape and chewy crust. It’s cooked in a coal-fired oven, giving it a charred flavor.
Traditional Toppings for New Haven-Style Pizza
The most simple version of New Haven pizza (sometimes also called tomato pie) focuses on the crust and sauce, with just a sprinkle of grated Romano on top. Mozzarella is considered a topping, so you can opt in or not.
New Haven is also known for its white clam pizza, which features olive oil, garlic, clams and grated Romano. For a similar flavor, try making our New Haven Clam Pizza.
Where to get New Haven-Style Pizza
One of the best-known places to get New Haven pizza is Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana, which has multiple locations throughout Connecticut and Massachusetts, as well as locations in New York and Rhode Island.
New England Greek-Style Pizza
Originating from Greek immigrants in New England, this type of pizza is baked inside of a pan in the oven instead of being laid straight on the bricks, so the crust comes out thick, soft and crispy (nearly fried) on the edges. It’s also known for being greasy—it’s made with lots of olive oil, which often soaks through the bottom of the pizza box.
Traditional Toppings for New England Greek-Style Pizza
New England Greek-style pizza is typically topped with tomato sauce, lots of oregano, mozzarella and cheddar cheese. It can have Greek-style ingredients such as feta, kalamata olives and artichokes, but the hallmark of a New England Greek pizza is the thick, oily crust.
Where to Get New England Greek-Style Pizza
You can find Greek-style pizza at Greek-owned pizzerias in the Boston area, throughout Connecticut and in other places across New England.