Detroit-Style Pizza

Detroit Style Pizza

 The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney

  • Total: 45 mins
  • Prep: 25 mins
  • Cook: 20 mins
  • Rising: 60 mins
  • Yield:

Detroit-style pizza is a thick crust pie native to Michigan. The crust is fluffy and cooked in a large rectangular pan, much like a Sicilian-style pizza. The cheese is sprinkled all the way to the edges of the pizza, creating a crispy, crunchy, cheesy crust that is truly irresistible. The pizza dough is very moist before you cook it, which creates a chewy, yet soft crust on the inside. The pan is brushed with butter before adding the dough, making it crispy and crunchy on the outside.

There are many different restaurants in Detroit that carry this style of pizza as well as a few chains, like Little Caesars. Some of the pizzerias put the cheese first, then the toppings and sauce, while others do the sauce first. We put the sauce on before the cheese and on top along with the toppings. Any way you choose, this pizza is incredibly delicious.

Ingredients

  • For the Pizza Dough:
  • 2 1/4 cup warm water
  • 4 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoon yeast
  • 2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 4 1/2 cups flour
  • For the Pizza Sauce:
  • 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes (with basil)
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • For the Assembly:
  • 3 tablespoons butter (room temperature)
  • 16 ounces brick mozzarella cheese (cut into 1/4-inch cubes)
  • 8 ounces sliced pepperoni

Steps to Make It

Note: While there are multiple steps to this recipe, this dish is broken down into workable categories to help you better plan for preparation and cooking.

Make the Pizza Dough

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Pizza dough ingredients
     The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney
  2. Measure the warm water in a measuring cup. Add the salt, yeast, and sugar to the water. Allow it to sit for a minute to froth. 

    Yeast in warm water in a measuring cup
     The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney
  3. Add the olive oil and flour and knead in the bowl of a stand mixer with the bread hook attachment. You can also knead with a wooden spoon. Knead until the dough is smooth but still quite sticky. The dough will be very moist.

    Pizza dough mixed in a bowl
     The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney
  4. Scrape down the sides and cover. Allow it to rise for at least an hour or up to 24 hours. If you rise for 24 hours do so under refrigeration.

    Risen pizza dough in a bowl
     The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney

Make the Sauce and Assemble the Pizza

  1. While the dough is rising, prepare the sauce. 

    Pizza sauce ingredients
    The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney 
  2. Mix together all of the sauce ingredients in a bowl. Whisk until completely combined. 

    Pizza sauce mixed up in a bowl
     The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney
  3. Preheat your oven to 450 F. Grease a 9 x 13-inch baking dish with the softened butter. 

    Buttered pan
     The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney
  4. Scrape the dough out of the bowl and into the baking dish. Grease your fingers with olive oil and press the dough into the pan so that it reaches the edges and is of even thickness. 

    Pizza dough pressed into pan
     The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney
  5. Coat the dough with a layer of sauce (about 3/4 cup). 

    Pizza sauce on dough
    The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney 
  6. Add the diced cheese onto the top of the sauce. Add the cheese all the way to the edges.

    Raw pizza topped with cheese
     The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney
  7. Add the sliced pepperoni and a few more dollops of the sauce. You will not use all of the sauce. 

    Uncooked Detroit Style pizza
    The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney 
  8. Bake on the lowest rack of your oven for about 20 minutes or until the top is browned, the edges are brown and crispy, and the bottom is golden. 

    Detroit Style Pizza
     The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney
  9. Carefully remove from the pan with a large spatula onto a cutting board. Allow the pizza to cool slightly and then cut it into squares. Serve immediately. 

    Sliced Detroit style pizza
     The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney

Recipe Variations

There are so many different toppings you can add. Heartier toppings are what are most commonly used, but you can use your imagination. Try a combination of any of the following:

  • Ham
  • Bacon
  • Olives
  • Mushrooms
  • Peppers
  • Onions
  • Italian Sausage

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