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Detroit-Style Pizza is An Iconic Local Food!

Updated: Feb 9, 2023

Love For the Rectangular Treat

A rectangular Detroit-Style Pizza fresh out of the oven.
Detroit-Style Rectangular Pizza (media by JC)

I have loved rectangular-style deep dish pizza for as long as I can remember. Detroit Style pizza was a concept started by Buddy’s pizza. As I was always told, the secret was in the pan and how the ingredients were added almost in reverse. In Buddy’s own words:

Today, there are several copycat places throughout Michigan and the domestic U.S., but I will always associate the Detroit Style Pizza with Buddy’s. When I learned you could buy a similar pan and recreate the experience at home; I was all in.

I bought the 10x14 inch Detroit Style pizza pan from Amazon, and it was delivered in a day or two. Over the last year, the recipe I have settled on revolves around the simplest ingredients. Before preparing the pizza, I start with setting the oven to 550F. It takes my electric oven well over 10 minutes to get to temperature.

The first ingredient is olive oil, as I look to put a good amount in the pan. I will list out in order the recipe below. You are going to want to start with a good dough. You can scour the internet for several different recipes, or you can do what I do. I have purchased from several local supermarkets/grocery establishments and settled on a favorite. I always buy a fresh dough ball, not frozen, and ensure I let it sit at room temp before forming it into the pan.

Partially prepared dough ball pressed into the rectangular pan.
Partially Flattened Dough Ball (media by JC)

Depending on where you buy your dough ball and how they prepare it, it may tend to rise. This could hasten your preparation, as I recently experienced this past weekend. I had bought two dough balls, made one pizza on Friday, and my second dough ball had nearly doubled in size by Sunday. I attribute this to the yeast used. This will affect the thickness of your pizza. Needless to say, Sunday’s pizza was extra-thick.

Next up, have your toppings ready. As my household likes to keep it simple, we use a thinly cut pepperoni, followed by shredded six-type cheese, and topped with a good pizza sauce. The pepperoni is added first and pressed into the dough to ensure proper dough infusion of the tasty juices. Top generously with the shredded cheese, allowing plenty of cheese to encompass the outskirts of the dough edges. This will provide the highly coveted caramelized crust. The pizza sauce is applied as the last topping in three separate rows.

A finished Detroit-Style masterpiece of pizza.
3 Rows of Sauce (media by JC)
  1. Turn on your oven and set it to 550 F.

  2. I start with five tablespoons of olive oil in the pan and coat the entire bottom.

  3. Use either an excellent homemade dough or a store-bought dough ball. Spread the dough out to cover the entire bottom of the pan.

  4. Add pepperoni generously as your first layer to the dough, making sure to press into the dough.

  5. Generously add cheese to as the next layer. I use roughly 8 to 10 ounces of “Italian Blend” cheese comprised of 6 different kinds of cheese. Wisconsin cubed brick cheese also comes highly recommended but is a little harder to find. Remember, cover the pizza generously and experiment. Your desired crust is heavily influenced by your generous amount of cheese.

  6. I have used many different sauces and will continue to do so. Plan on using one full jar to create your three rows. This equates to 13 ounces.

  7. Remember- add more or fewer toppings as desired.

  8. Place into the oven and cook for 10 minutes. Depending on your oven, you may have to dial this in. I went a little longer once, and it was too long. Ten minutes is the sweet spot for my electric oven, and the pizza comes out bubbling. It continues to cook for a short while after being removed.

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