Detroit Style Pizza

Adapted from a recipe on Serious Eats, from J. Kenji Lopez-Alt, this is definitely serious pizza! Thick, focaccia-like crust, lots of cheese and pepperoni, and thick, flavorful sauce! I daresay, one of the best pizzas you’ve had!

This recipe is not finicky or difficult; however, it does involve some waiting time, when letting the dough rest, rise, then rest again, but you will be rewarded with amazing flavor!

  • Author: Laura
  • Prep Time: 45-55 mins.
  • Cook Time: 15 mins.
  • Total Time: About 4 hours, including waiting time
  • Yield: 1 - 13x9 Deep Dish Pizza 1x
  • Category: Pizza
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: American



For the Dough:

  • 2 cups + 4 tsp (300 g) Bread Flour
  • 1 heaping tsp (5 g) Instant Yeast
  • 1 T (9g) Kosher Salt (1.5 tsp table salt)
  • Scant 1 cup (220 ml) Water – 1 cup minus 1.5 teaspoons

For the Sauce:

  • 2 Tbsp (30 ml) Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • 3 Cloves Garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp (5g) Dry Oregano
  • Dash Red Pepper Flake
  • 28 oz. (800g) can Crushed Tomatoes (see Note 1)
  • 1 tsp (6g) Garlic Powder
  • 1 Tbsp (15g) Sugar
  • Salt, to taste

To Assemble Pizza:

  • 2 Tbsp (30 ml) Extra-Virgin Olive Oil or Butter for pan 
  • 1/4 c (45g) Parmesan or Parmeggiano Reggiano, shredded
  • 12 oz. (340 g) Brick cheese, or combination Low-moisture Mozzarella and Jack or Fontina Cheese (S
  • 12 oz. Pepperoni sliced in natural casing, 1/8” thick


Make the Pizza Dough:

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together the flour, yeast and salt. Add the water, then combine with a dough hook at low speed until the dough forms a ball and looks “shaggy” and rough. Turn off the mixer, and let the dough rest for 10 minutes. Then, return mixer to medium-low (I used setting 4 of a possible 10) to knead the dough 10 minutes. It should be a smooth ball at this point, and the dough should feel sticky. Remove the dough hook, and using floured hands, form the dough into a tight ball, cover tightly with plastic and set in a warm place until it doubles in size. This could take 1 1/2 – 2 hours. (You could make the dough in a food processor by pulsing to combine the dry ingredients, adding the water, then processing for 30 seconds to form a dough ball, then an additional 30 seconds. Transfer to a bowl, cover and set in warm place to double in volume, as above)
  2. Once dough has doubled in volume, pour 2 Tbsp (30ml) Olive oil (or melted Butter!) into the bottom of a 13×9 pan (or, if you have a Detroit Pizza Pan, which is 14×10, use that!). Press dough down with floured hands, attempting to spread it toward the edges. If it doesn’t go all the way to the edges (mine did not, either!) just spread as much as you can, then cover tightly with plastic and allow the gluten to relax another 30 minutes. In the meantime, make the sauce and prep the cheese.
  3. After the 30 minute rest, you should be able to stretch the dough to the edges of the pan. Once it covers the pan, replace the plastic if you still need to finish the sauce.

Make the Sauce:

  1. Into a medium saucepan over medium heat, place 2 Tbsp (30 ml) Olive oil. When it shimmers, add the minced garlic, oregano and pepper flakes, and stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
  2. Add the tomatoes, garlic powder, onion powder and sugar. If you used whole tomatoes, then blend with an immersion blender until the sauce is nearly smooth. Bring to a simmer, and reduce for 30 minutes, at which point, the sauce will be nice and thick. During this time, preheat the oven to 500-550F, or as hot as your oven will go it it doesn’t go to 500-550F.

Make and Bake the Pizza:

  1. Uncover the pizza dough that is stretched to cover the pan. Place a layer (about half) of pepperoni all over the dough. As you go, press down on the dough to release any air bubbles you see or feel in the dough. Then sprinkle the parmesan cheese around the edges of the dough, right along the edge of the pan. 
  2. Top with the cheese cubes, then another layer of pepperoni.
  3. Using 1 1/2 cups, or about half of the sauce you made, spoon the sauce into 3 rows over the pepperoni.
  4. Place pizza in hot oven until the sides are crispy and dark (even black!), and the cheese is beginning to brown. In my oven this took about 19 minutes at 475F, and 16 mins at 525F. But since all ovens are different, be sure to begin checking for doneness at around 12 minutes!
  5. After removing the pizza, run a sharp knife around the edge. If desired for serving, carefully lift pizza out of the pan and onto a cutting board.  Cut into slices and serve.







  1. I used a 28-oz. can of Peeled, whole tomatoes, and blended them with an immersion blender after adding them to the pan.
  2. The recipe for the sauce makes about 3 cups, which is double what you’ll need for this recipe. You can save the remainder and use it for pasta or another Detroit Style Pizza.
  3. Brick Cheese is difficult to find in some areas – but Low Moisture Mozzarella combined with Jack or Fontina work as a reasonable substitute. (I’ve used 6oz. Jack or Fontina with 6 oz. Low Moisture, Whole Milk Mozzarella)


Keywords: Detroit Style Pizza, Pizza, deep dish, Detroit, Pan Pizza, homemade Detroit style pizza, how to make Detroit style pizza, deep dish pizza recipe, detroit pizza recipe,

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