Pizza has evolved over the years to become one of America’s most cherished delicacies. Whether you call it a snack or a whole meal, this all-time favorite has left an indelible footprint on the American homeland. What’s even interesting is that pizza isn’t an American-invented dish. Pizza has its roots stretched back to the native city of Naples, Italy. It was only after the surge of Italian immigrants into the United States at the turn of the 20th century did it gain its popularity.
Today, pizza is consumed in large amounts by Americans across the country. It is estimated that about a hundred acres of pizza are eaten daily in the US. Pizza without a doubt has become a regular staple in the American food menu, with regions adapting and modifying it into different shapes, styles, and appeal.
In this article, we will be discussing some of the most popular pizza styles in America today. Some of the types of pizzas mentioned here are home-based while others have their roots in other countries around the world.
- Sicilian Pizza
You can’t start any conversation around pizza without first mentioning the famous Sicilian pizza. It’s one of the very first types of pizza to make into the US in the late 19th century. Sicilian pizza, however, gained wide acceptance after WWII.
This traditional delicacy is made of a thick cut of large dough and a rich mix of tomato sauce, onion, herbs, and anchovies. It’s baked at a very high temperature to give it a crunchy crust. Sicilian pizza can be eaten with cheese as an option.
- New York Pizza
New York City is known for its “thin crust” pizza. Baked at a high 550 degrees, it comes out firm, with a flat edge, and doesn’t crack upon leaving the oven. New York-style pizza is made street-ready and you can get one at almost every commercial area.
Even if you don’t want to go for the full round piece, you can still get a slice for as low as a few dollars. New York City remains one of the go-to states for some of the best pizza in the US. This is because gourmet and culinary chefs have found a way to experiment and innovate it into different varieties.
- Greek-Style Pizza
The first Greeks to make their way into the US by the early 20th century made popular the Greek-style pizza. After seeing how traditional Italian pizza was made, they went on to craft theirs using special ingredients.
Greek pizza is popular for its thick, puffy crust, generally cooked in pans and not baked. This gives the fried feeling at the bottom of the crust. Greek pizza isn’t as thick as typical Sicilian pizza but is chewier, and has a fluffier feel in the mouth.
The Greek pizza is made of tomatoes, onion, cheese, lots of greens, black olives, and a touch of garlic. It usually is a lot richer in the sauce mix than the cheese.
- Chicago Stuffed, Deep-dish Pizza
The city of Chicago is notorious for its stuffed, deep-dish pizza. The first of its kind anywhere, this pizza is unique in several ways.
Deep-dish pizza comes in a very thick crust that separates the cheese from the sauce, with rich meat stuffing. The outcome usually has the same look as a pie. This style of pizza was invented by Chicago-based Uno Pizzeria back in the 1940s. What makes the Chicago deep-dish pizza unique is that it wasn’t designed with any commercial value. It’s one of those kitchen-improvised versions of pizza where ingredients way out-ration the dough.
Chefs in the 40s made a resourceful and elaborate display of the dish by heaping it with whatever leftover food items they could lay their hands on. Some of the most popular ingredients were beef and an assortment of vegetables. Since then, it has gone on to become the Windy city’s all-time favorite.
- Ohio Valley Pizza
Ohio Valley pizza could also be referred to as the pizza of the midwest since most states around this region adopt the same style. These states include Indiana, West Virginia, Kentucky, and Pennsylvania.
The Ohio Valley pizza is unique for the simple reason that the toppings are usually added after it has been baked. Once it leaves the oven, the Ohio Valley-style pizza is cut into square pies with the toppings sprinkled on them while hot. The heat of the square-cut pies then cooks up the toppings before they are served.
Whatever pizza styling is your favorite, there’s no denying the unifying feelings, delicious taste, and adaptability that pizzas bring. No matter the occasion, you can’t go wrong with a well-prepared pizza.