Neapolitan vs Sicilian Pizza

When debating about the best pizza style, the ultimate contest will be Neapolitan vs. Sicilian pizza. Each style represents a region in Italy, and each is special in its own way. But to know which one is better, you must first understand the main differences.

So what is the difference between Neapolitan pizza and Sicilian pizza? The main difference between Neapolitan pizza and Sicilian pizza is that Neapolitan pizza is made with a thinner crust while Sicilian pizza is made with a thicker crust. Neapolitan pizza typically uses San Marzano tomatoes, whereas Sicilian pizza uses regular canned tomatoes. Finally, Neapolitan pizza is baked in a wood-fired oven for about 90 seconds, whereas Sicilian pizza is baked in a conventional oven for about 5-10 minutes.

Baked margherita pizza

Nevertheless, people who tried Sicilian pizza can argue this style is the best. Keep reading and find out what makes these pizzas so special.

Neapolitan vs Sicilian Pizza – What Are the Main Differences?

Aside from the shape and ingredients used in toppings, these two pizzas have many other differences, mainly in the preparation of the dough and baking. Here are the main differences in a nutshell.

Name of pizza style NeapolitanSicilian
CrustTin, crispy roundly shape crustThick, airy, and soft, rectangularly shaped crust
Crust ingredientsMade of yeast, wheat, salt, water, and OO flourMade of all-purpose or bread flour mixed with a lot of water
SauceLa Salsa is made of tomato sauce seasoned with cloves, bay leaf, oregano, mushrooms, thyme, and basilThere are different kinds of made with garlic almonds, ripe tomato sauce, basil,  chopped beef carrots, celery, and onions
VegetablesSan Marzano tomatoesDepending on the pizza style, it may include onions, tomatoes, herbs, and cheese anchovies
MeatDepending on the pizza style, it may include Italian sausage, pork, pork rindsDepending on the pizza style, it may include ham, chicken, pepperoni, lamb, beef, sausages
CheezeCheddar, mozzarella di bufala, mozzarella cheese, Ricotta, Provolone ValpadanaParmesan, Toma cheese, provolone, gorgonzola, caciocavallo
Baking90 seconds in a wooden stove oven at 800 degrees FahrenheitFive – ten minutes cooked at 500 Fahrenheit

What Pizza Is Better?

As you know, when it comes to pizza, there is no point in discussing the taste. Because if pizza is made with fine ingredients in a proper way, it will be delicious. Still, if we have to emphasize what makes each style better than the other, we will do it. A Sicilian pizza is better for those who wish to make it at home – the dough will take longer to rise and you will need to learn a special kneading technique. Also, Sicilian pizza is great if you must feed many hungry mouths since it has more topping and dough.

On the other hand, since it doesn’t have many toppings, the prep time of Neapolitan pizza is shorter, and you will not need to wait that much for the dough to rise. However, you will need to learn how to knead a soft and smooth dough. Also, since there are not many ingredients, the one you put on top must be top class. This pizza style is ideal for a romantic dinner with your significant other, with a bottle of fine Italian wine. And in my humble opinion (without intent to offend old Sicilian families,) Neapolitana is a better option. It demands high-quality ingredients and true pizza master skills. In the end, it is up to personal preferences – I prefer thinner, crispy crust.

How Many Pizza Styles Are There?

We all heard about Chicago and New York pizzas, but there are so many pizza variants out there you can try. The main differences are in crust and toppings. But if the pizza is made with top-class ingredients, it will taste amazing no matter what shape or style it is. Here are some of the most famous pizza styles:

  • Sicilian,
  • Neapolitan,
  • New York-style,
  • Chicago,
  • Greek,
  • California.

How Is Neapolitan Pizza Made?

Neapolitan pizza is the oldest style of pizza and the most popular one. It comes from the Italian city of Naples, and this pizza is protected by law. So if you wish to serve pizza by the name Neapolitan, you will have to follow strict rules, including using fresh ingredients and traditional toppings like Italian mozzarella and San Marzano tomatoes.

However, following these rules can be hard outside of Italy, so if you really want to try the best Napoletana, you will need to travel to the origin point. The crust of Napoletana is round in shape, thin and crispy outside while chewy on the inside. Traditionally, this pizza was baked on the open-fire wooden stove. The sauce is made from tomato sauce seasoned with basil, bay leaf, cloves, mushrooms, oregano, and thyme. Here are the most popular Neapolitan pizzas:

  • Pizza Margherita – It is made with San Marzano plum tomatoes, mozzarella, cheddar (fior di latte,) basil, and virgin olive oil.
  • Pizza Marinara – It is made with plum tomatoes, garlic, oregano, and without cheddar cheese.
  • Pizza Margherita Extra – Same as Margherita just instead of using fior di latte mozzarella, it is using mozzarella di bufala.

How Do You Make Sicilian Pizza?

The Sicilian pizza was made in a region of Palermo, Sicily. The shape of pizza is rectangular, and the crust is thick and airy, while toppings are rich in vegetables and seasoning. When compared with Neapolitan pizza, Siciliana has more cheese, toppings, sauce, and dough. Sicilian pizza has tomato sauce, mozzarella cheese, onion, tomato, herbs, cheese anchovies, and a mixture of meats. Here are the most famous Sicilian-style pizzas:

  • Sicilian Pizza From Palermo – The toppings are made of strongly flavored cheese, sauce, garlic, onions, herbs, and anchovies. The shape is rectangular.
  • The Messina – Crusts are made from calzone. On top are tomatoes, anchovies, endives, and toma cheese.
  • Catania – It is made with two layers of dough and toppings in the middle, like a pizza sandwich. The filling is usually made of tomato sauce, sausages, broccoli, and potatoes.
  • Siracuse – Dough is round in shape with toppings made of crushed tomatoes, mushrooms, fresh mozzarella, oregano, prosciutto di Parma, pancetta, olives, and olive oil.