Neapolitan is the original pizza. This delicious pie dates all the way back to 18th century in Naples, Italy. During this time, the poorer citizens of this seaside city frequently purchased food that was cheap and could be eaten quickly. Luckily for them, Neapolitan pizza was affordable and readily available through numerous street vendors.
Sicilian pizza, also known as “sfincione,” provides a thick cut of pizza with pillowy dough, a crunchy crust, and robust tomato sauce. This square-cut pizza is served with or without cheese, and often with the cheese underneath the sauce to prevent the pie from becoming soggy. Sicilian pizza was brought to America in the 19th century by Sicilian immigrants and became popular in the United States after the Second World War.
Chicago pizza, also commonly referred to as deep-dish pizza, gets its name from the city it was invented in. During the early 1900’s, Italian immigrants in the windy city were searching for something similar to the Neapolitan pizza that they knew and loved. Instead of imitating the notoriously thin pie, Ike Sewell had something else in mind. He created a pizza with a thick crust that had raised edges, similar to a pie, and ingredients in reverse, with slices of mozzarella lining the dough followed by meat, vegetables, and then topped with a can of crushed tomatoes. This original creation led Sewell to create the now famous chain restaurant, Pizzeria Uno.
With its characteristic large, foldable slices and crispy outer crust, New York-style pizza is one of America’s most famous regional pizza types. Originally a variation of Neapolitan-style pizza, the New York slice has taken on a fame all its own, with some saying its unique flavor has to do with the minerals present in New York’s tap water supply.
Hawaiian pizza is a type of pizza best known for having pineapple and either ham or bacon as toppings. Hawaiian pizza is commonly considered controversial, provoking passionate and polarizing debate, mainly focused on the inclusion of pineapple.
Looking for a light slice? St. Louis pizza features a thin crust with a cracker-like consistency that is made without yeast. Due to the crispy crust, St. Louis pizza is usually cut into three- or four-inch rectangles, known as “party” or “tavern” cut. This pizza features Provel processed cheese, which is a gooey combination of cheddar, Swiss, and provolone cheeses. St. Louis received an influx of Italian immigrants in the 19th century who were looking for employment opportunities. The Italian community, largely from Milan and Sicily, created the St. Louis-style pizza. Its sweet sauce is reminiscent of the Sicilian influence.
Reflecting the city’s deep ties to the auto industry, Detroit-style pizza was originally baked in a square automotive parts pan in the 1940’s. Detroit pizza is first topped with pepperoni, followed by brick cheese which is spread to the very edges of the pan, yielding a caramelized cheese perimeter. Sauce is then spooned over the pizza, an order similar to Chicago-style pizza. This pizza features a thick, extra crispy crust that is tender and airy on the inside.
California pizza, or gourmet pizza, is known for its unusual ingredients. This pizza got its start back in the late 1970’s when Chef Ed LaDou began experimenting with pizza recipes in the classic Italian restaurant, Prego. He created a pizza with mustard, ricotta, pate, and red pepper, and by chance, served it to Wolfgang Puck. Impressed with LaDou’s innovative pie, Puck invited him to be a head pizza chef at his restaurant. It was here that LaDou came up with over 250 unique pizza recipes that eventually formed the menu of the chain restaurant California Pizza Kitchen.
Tavern or Bar style pizza is very thin-crusted to leave plenty of room in the eater’s stomach for beer. It’s baked in a gas or electric oven. Bar pizza is made with decent, commercial, aged mozzarella and comes topped with mushrooms, pepperoni and sausage. Tavern pizza can be cut in wedges or party squares.
Breakfast pizza is a fun and tasty recipe that combines many favorite breakfast foods into a single dish that is cut and sliced in the same manner as pizza. It is easy to make and fun to serve at brunches or just for something different at the breakfast table. While modeled after traditional Italian pizza, this morning fare offers a new twist that creates a truly American pizza.
Dessert pizza is pizza that is consumed for dessert. It is not a traditional pizza that uses sauce and cheese but instead is topped with fruit pie filling, marshmallows or chocolate and usually has a cream cheese or fudge swirl and a brown sugar crumble.
Frozen pizza is mass produced and sold in grocery stores. It is one of the most affordable styles of pizza and covers a variety of pizza styles, crusts, etc. You can find just about any toppings on frozen pizza and it is baked in a home oven or stored in your freezer until needed.