What’s so unique about Chicago-style pizza taste? Exploring the Unique Layers and Flavors of Chicago-Style Pizza
Pizza is a favorite staple of people globally. Some people like authentic Italian pizza, some admire Neapolitan pizza, while some go crazy over pizzas with regional twists.
Thank God Pizzas are so versatile because if that was not the case, we would not have come across the famous Chicago-style pizza. But bet, you’ll question if Chicago-style pizza is even a pizza because of the way it’s crafted. It’s so unique and so stuffed with flavors, you’ll forget those thin-crust pizzas with a thin layer of sauce, cheese, and veggies.
Chicago-style pizza or deep dish pizza originated in Chicago, Illinois. Chicago-style pizza is differentiated by its thick, buttery crust that is often up to 2–3 inches deep and forms a bowl-like shape to hold the generous amount of cheese, sauce, and toppings.
Chicago style pizza has a very rich taste since its has a crispy oil-enriched crust, loads of cheese, thick tomato sauce, and Italian meat. It is a thick pie loaded with flavors and textures including crunchy, fluffy, cheesy, creamy, chunky, tomatoey, herby, spicy, tangy, and meaty.
One more interesting fact about this pizza is that the layers of a typical pizza are reversed in a Chicago-style pizza. So, the first layer on a Chicago deep dish will be a generous amount of cheese, followed by veggies and meat, and lastly layered by a thick layer of tomato sauce.
What Does Chicago Pizzas Taste Like?
Chicago style pizza has its popularity hidden in its dense volume and rich taste. When you’re having a Chicago style pizza, know that you’re in for a treat that includes oil-enriched crust, topped with loads of gooey cheese, thick tomato sauce, and dollops of Italian sausage.
With every bite of this deep dish pie, a combination of flavors explodes in your mouth. It is a filling pie enriched with a variety of flavors and textures including crunchy, fluffy, cheesy, creamy, chunky, tomatoey, herby, spicy, tangy, and meaty.
You might go “ew” seeing the amount of oil in this pie, but once you taste it, you’re gonna forget about your fat a**, and that would be the real “ate it and no crumbs left.”
Chicago Style Pizza: The History
Pizza has been delighting its connoisseurs for decades now. Pizza gained popularity and spread like wildfire when Italian immigrants settles in America between the 1800s and 1900s.
Chicago was the city where many Italian immigrants settled and bought its delicacy from their homeland. But they did it with a twist (I’m so glad) and created a different kind of pie that we recognize now as “Chicago-style pizza”.
In 1943, Ike Sewell and Ric Riccardo founded their pizzeria in north Chicago and the name of the pizzeria was Pizzeria Uno. This is where they invented the famous Chicago-style deep-dish pizza. The love and support from the local community and Pizza connoisseurs made this pizza the icon that it is today.
Although Chicago pizza is not totally Italian from crust to cheese, In fact, it has a little blend of America, baked in a deep dish pan. That’s what makes this pizza so special and touristy.
Chicago Style Pizza: What’s in the Pizza?
Here comes the exciting part that’s gonna make you drool. The layers of Chicago-style pizza are a match made in heaven. I mean, who doesn’t like extra? Well, you get every layer “extra” in the Chicago-style pizza. Let’s start with the crust
Chicago Style pIzza’s Crust
Mind you, this is not your usual crust. Even the pan on which this pizza is made is not usual. The pan used while making Chicago-style pizza is cylindrical with deep edges.
The butter in the Chicago pizza is the real game changer. The butter makes its crust the creamiest crust ever. On top of that the Olive oil coated on the sides of the pan makes the outer layer of Chicago cheese pizza crispier and flaky, which tastes am-a-zing!
Chicago Style pIzza’s Sauce
When I say everything in Chicago-style pizza is “Extra”, I also mean a lot of extra “tomato sauce”. Moreover, the sauce in this pizza is extra thick and extra tangy.
This tomato sauce is usually made on a stovetop. Garlic is what brings the real taste to food. So, we’ve got garlic in this pizza sauce.
Chicago Style Pizza’s Cheese
Then goes in the generous amount of shredded mozzarella cheese in the Chicago pie. I mean Imagine a pie with a bowl-like crust and that edible bowl is filled with an ample amount of gooey cheese and garlicky tomato sauce. Absolutely yum!
You must be wondering, OKay so even of all this content in the Chicago-style pizza are extra. But still, what’s the real difference between a Chicago-style pizza and a regular pizza? Let me tell you:
Difference between Chicago-style pizza and regular pizza
The first difference, as we discussed above is that the Chicago-style pizza has a deep crust known as deep dish pizza.
Secondly, the order of layers in a Chicago-style pizza is what creates a real difference. In Chicago-style pizza, on top of the crust first comes a generous amount of cheese, then toppings (meats and vegetables), and at last the tomato sauce.
The reason behind this reversed order is that deep-dish pizzas take a little more time for baking than regular pizzas, majorly the thin crust pizzas. In the usual case, the mozzarella on top would be burnt and hardened because of the excessive baking time
Types of Chicago-style pizza
In addition to the deep dish, Chicagoans invented two more Chicago-style pizzas, namely the Pan and Stuffed Pizza. Nonetheless, things that you’ll find common in most Chicago-style pizza are thick tomato sauce with visible bits of tomatoes and a crispy crust made by oiling the outside of the dough and baking it. Also, the reversed layers of cheese-toppings-sauce.
Pan Pizza: The popular one by Pizza Hut, the pan pizza has a thicker crust baked in a deep dish pan with higher edges. Although the layers in this pizza are placed like in the regular pizzas sauce-toppings-cheese.
Stuffed crust pizza: In this pizza, the dough is spread out and the sauces and toppings of the pizza get rolled into the edges that are crusty on the outside. Again, the toppings are as usual sauce, cheese, meat, and veggies.
I am convinced you’re on your way to getting your favorite Chicago-style pizza takeaway, but before that here’s this blog’s takeaway for you.
Chicago-style pizza, from being a poor’s staple to a global pizza icon, has come a long way. It is not just a blend of flavors but also a blend of two cultures: Italian and American. And the taste is just amazing, with all the flavors that are “extra”, but like extra enough to make you drool every time you hear its name.
Chicago-style pizza is a great choice for pizza enthusiasts who love deep-dish pizzas. Even you can make one at home. Just make sure that you have a pan with deep edges and do not forget the reversed order of pizza layers.
So let’s get cooking! Or just order one.