Did you know that pizza is not the same everywhere you go? It’s different in Europe than it is in the United States. And even in the states, pizza is different depending on what part of the country you are in.
Have you ever wondered what types of pizza there are? You’d be surprised, as there are quite a few! I’ve discovered eight!
In this article, I will help you learn about the different kinds of pizza you may encounter in different parts of the country.
A Short History of Pizza
I think in order for us to learn about the different kinds of pizza, we need to know where it came from in the first place. Most of you know that it came from Italy, but the story behind the rage is rather interesting.
Pizza comes to us from Naples, Italy, where it was served as a quick, affordable, and delicious meal for working-class folks on the go. But it wasn’t until the 1940s that pizza became the popular food it is today.
During the second world war, pizza was discovered in the United States as Italians immigrate began serving it in various restaurants. Folks fell in love, and soon pizza shops were opening up not only in New York but Boston and Chicago.
After the war, pizza had already become an instant classic, and more and more places began to serve it all over the country.
Types of Pizza
Now that we have a little of the history of where this delicious food comes from, let’s look at some of the different variations of it.
- Neapolitan Style Pizza
- New York Style Pizza
- Chicago Style Pizza
- Sicilian style Pizza
- California Style Pizza
- Greek Style Pizza
- St. Louis Style Pizza
- Detroit Style Pizza
Neapolitan Style Pizza
Pizza from Naples is easily the original pizza, dating back to the 18th century. As explained above, working-class folks would purchase pizza because it was delicious, affordable, and easily found through local shops and vendors.
Neapolitan pizza generally comes with tomatoes, mozzarella, basil, oregano, and olive oil. It is a thinner crust that is designed to hold only the basic ingredients.
New York Style Pizza
New York Style pizza is famous for its large foldable crusts and is one of the country’s most popular types of pizza. New York pizza features tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese and is made with a thicker crust, so it’s more than ready to accommodate plenty of toppings.
Some of the most common toppings are sausage, pepperoni, anchovies, and mushrooms. Many pizza places will bake their New York pizza in a coal or wood-burning oven.
Chicago Style Pizza
Also known as deep dish pizza, Chicago pizza was created when Italian immigrants wanted to come up with something similar to the Neapolitan but with a little something extra.
A pizza with a thick crust and raised edges was created. Only the mozzarella was put on first, followed by the toppings and then the tomatoes. The most common toppings used are sausage, ground beef, pepperoni, mushrooms, onions, and green peppers.
Sicilian Style Pizza
Sicilian Pizza was brought to America by Sicilian immigrants and grew in popularity after the second world war. Folks loved the thick, fluffy dough with the crunchy crust.
Sicilian pizza is usually cut in a square rather than a circle and served with tomato sauce, and it can be made with or without cheese. For toppings, favorites include onions, tomatoes, herbs, and anchovies.
California Style Pizza
California Pizza didn’t become popular until the 1970s and is known for its rather bizarre ingredients. California pizza can be made with pate, ricotta, mustard, and red pepper, to name a few of these different toppings.
However, there really is no such thing as traditional toppings when it comes to a California Pizza. Along with the above-mentioned, folks have been known to add goat cheese, chicken, artichokes, or eggs.
Greek Style Pizza
Greek Pizza holds a special place in my heart as it’s especially popular in New England, where I grew up. I remember the little Greek pizza place in town we used to frequent, and it was delicious.
Greek Pizza is cooked in shallow pans, drenched in olive oil, which gives that thick crust a bottom that is a bit fried. The crust is not overly thick or thin, somewhere in the middle. It’s perfect if you ask me
Greek Pizza tends to have more tangy tomato sauce with a lot of oregano. Cheese toppings are generally a mix of mozzarella, cheddar, and provolone. You will often find more Greek-style toppings such as olives, feta cheese, and red onion.
St. Louis Style Pizza
St. Louis pizza is made with a very thin crust that is made without yeast and cut into rectangles to be served. A yummy combination of Swiss, cheddar, and provolone cheese make up the toppings along with oregano.
Immigrants from Milan and Sicily who came to St. Louis came up with this version that is much like the Sicilian pizza. The crust may be thin, but it is tough and can hold more ingredients than you would think.
Detroit Style Pizza
Believe it or not, Detroit pizza was originally baked in square automotive part pans! I hope those pans were clean. It was because of the auto boom in the 1940s that Detroit pizza grew in popularity.
The thick, crispy crust is usually topped with pepperoni and then cheese spread out over the edges of the pan. The sauce is then placed over the cheese, much like the Chicago style.
Popular toppings include Wisconsin cheese, tomato sauce, pepperoni, mushrooms, and olives.
You certainly don’t have to go far to get a piece of pizza these days, as pizza shops seem to be on every corner. But if you are looking for a specific type of pizza with a more regional feel, you may need to travel to different parts of the country to get the real thing.
And we owe it all to the amazing Italian immigrants who started this craze that has stood the test of time.