Pizza is one of the world’s preferred comfort foods, but not everyone finds comfort in the same kind of pie. In fact, depending on where you go, you can find dozens of different types of pizza, each promising the best crust, sauce, and cheese. So, just how well do you know your pizza? (And do you have a favorite?)
Let’s take a look at the many different types of pizza from around the country:
Chicago Deep Dish Style
Deep dish pizza: you either love it or you hate it. Out of the many different types of pizza from around the country, this style of pie from Chicago, Illinois is probably the most polarizing. But what is deep dish pizza anyway?
Chicago’s traditional pizza has a deep, thick crust, likening it more to a pie than a traditional flatbread. Okay, so it’s not a thin crust pizza – what is the big deal? In fact, the thickness of the crust changes the very makeup of the pizza.
Because of the very deep crust, Chicago style pizzas have a much longer bake time than most pies. In order to prevent the cheese from burning (which can happen too easily when a pizza has a long bake time), the toppings on a Chicago style pizza are assembled “upside down.”
What does that mean? Well, most pizzas follow the rhythm of sauce, cheese, toppings. The deep dish pizzas in Chicago, on the other hand, are made first with a layer of cheese, then toppings, and then sauce.
It is this top layer of sauce that saves the cheese from burning during the long bake time, creating that standout, love-it-or-hate-it deep dish pizza.
New York Neopolitan Style
Of course, when many people think pizza, they think of New York City, a mecca of all foods cheesy, greasy, and delicious. Just within this one city there are many different types of pizza, but one classic favorite is the New York Neopolitan style.
Like everything else in the Big Apple, this kind of pizza is larger than life: its triangular slices are generally much bigger than those of other pizzas. Why the bigger slices? The New York Neopolitan style pizza is designed to be sold by the slice so that you can, in true New Yorker fashion, eat it on the go.
And, to make it even easier to chow down while you pound the pavement, the thin crust of this New York pizza means that it is easily foldable, ergo, transportable.
The New York Neopolitan pizza is made pure and simple with tomatoes and mozzarella cheese, but for most inhabitants of America’s biggest concrete jungle, that is more than enough.
St. Louis Style
In St. Louis, Missouri you’ll find a pizza like no other. A St. Louis style pizza is made with a thin crust – but don’t be fooled, it is markedly different than a New York style pizza!
For one, the crust is made without yeast, which gives it a crisp, cracker-like crunch that a New York style pizza lacks. In fact, because the crust is so crisp, the pizza can’t be folded in half easily. For this reason, St. Louis style pizza is cut into squares or rectangles. Sometimes called a “party” or “tavern” cut, this shape (which is sturdier than a traditional triangular slice) allows the pizza to support more toppings.
Another key trademark of Missouri’s special pizza is its cheese. A St. Louis style pizza uses “Provel cheese,” a white processed cheese that’s made from a special blend of provolone, swiss, and cheddar.
(Note: This “Provel cheese” is not easily available outside of Missouri. So, if you get a craving for a cheesy pizza with a square, cracker-like crust, you know where to go!)
The tomato pie is an interesting type of pizza in that it looks very dissimilar to other styles of pizza. What makes the tomato pie (a unique creation from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) so distinct?
For one, its preparation process. When making a tomato pie, first the cheese is added, then the toppings, then the tomato sauce. Fine, but doesn’t that sound similar to how Chicago deep dish is made? A little. But what makes Philadelphia’s tomato pie special is the fact that it is not served straight from the oven.
Instead, this pizza is first allowed to cool. It is topped with a final layer of tomato sauce post-baking and served at room temperature (although, it can be reheated in the microwave if desired).
While the tomato pie is most popularly served in Pennsylvania, is has also gained favor in Rhode Island – its small, square-shaped slices are a favorite at children’s parties.
The California style pizza is one of the more newly created styles of pizza. Reigning from Los Angeles, the city of sunshine with a priority of healthy eating, this type of pie is more atypical than the others.
It’s sometimes called the “vegetarian pizza” as its toppings include an assortment of the state’s seasonal vegetables.
California style pizza has also been given the moniker “gourmet pizza.” Why is it seen as slightly fancier than the old-favorite, cheesy pie? Even though it has the same thin crust as a New York pizza, the pizza in California gets most of its inspiration from Californian cuisine (i.e. low on the saturated fats and high on the fresh vegetables).
If you’re someone who wants to stay away from the greasy (but oh-so-delicious) cheese of New York pizza or the thick crust of the Chicago deep dish, then the veggie-filled California style might be for you!
Providence Coal Fired Pizza
When it comes to evaluating the different types of pizza, we see coal fired pizza as the reigning champion. Why? Because it encompasses the best features of many different styles.
For example, do you like the thin, crispy crust of the New York Neopolitan style? A coal fired pizza will give you the same crunch with the added flavor of a slight, smoky char. And, while the dough may be much thinner than that of a Chicago deep dish, a coal fired pizza maintains a delicious, slightly chewy consistency at its center.
What’s the best part of a Providence Coal Fired Pizza? You won’t be drowning in a greasy mess! Our pizzas are made with fresh and local ingredients as part of our mission to bring you only a healthy, “everything-from-scratch” menu.
Want to learn more about what makes coal fired pizza the best around? See Coal-Fired Pizza vs. Wood-Fired Pizza: What’s the Difference?.
But don’t wait – test out our coal fired pizza and judge it for yourself!