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Chicago Deep Dish Pizza Crust Recipe - How do I get that Buttery Goodness?

I visited Chicago a couple weeks ago and simply cannot shake this craving for that seriously buttery and delicious crust that I tasted at Lou Manalti's. I've done many searches - Google and Chowhound alike - and every recipe I've found is basically a combination of yeast, water, AP flour, cornmeal, olive oil, and sometimes vegetable oil as well. So I wonder - where does that delicious buttery flavor come from? And what's the best way that I can replicate it at home? I found a recipe that also called for shortening, which I thought was interesting/promising, but I'm hoping my fellow 'Hounds can help me out here with some insight. :-)

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  1. I'm craving deep dish pizza too! There's a great Chicago pizza place in Palo Alto, CA and San Francisco called Patxi's that I'm seriously missing right now.

    Here's a link to another deep dish crust recipe:

    Found it after a google search including the term "biscuity". That's how I've always thought deep dish crust tasted. When I was little, Uno's crust made me think of Bisquick.

    1. After moving out of chicago 3 years ago I have been trying every single deep dish crust recipe I could find! the buttery flavor for me comes from coating the cast iron skillet with butter before putting in the dough but this recipe is fantastic:

      Chicago deep dish pizza dough
      3 1/4 cups flour
      1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
      1 1/2 teaspoons table salt
      2 teaspoons sugar
      2 1/4 teaspoons instant or rapid-rise yeast
      1 1/4 cups warm water
      ½ cup olive oil

      Mix yeast ¼ cup of warm water, ¼ cup of flour and sugar in a bowl cover and let stand in a warm place for 15~20 minutes then mix in all the other ingredients mix well and let stand covered for about 1.5 hours, punch down and knead until the correct texture is achieved (add a bit more flower so it’s not sticky) split into two dough balls and roll out for two pizzas!

      3 Replies
      1. re: sfafard

        As an expat Chicagoan, my 10th anniversary dinner tonight is riding on this crust recipe. Midst proofing the dough, though, I could already tell that this recipe is 100% the proper consistency and precisely what I needed (with a little butter) for a perfect "Old Chicago Pizza" (i.e. Paul's 79th and Cottage Grove deep-dish pie, a/k/a my gold standard forever and ever for the genre) to recreate such a piece of wonder in a Brooklyn kitchen. I confess, though, that I am using Scott Conant's tomato sauce recipe fortified with some extra garlic and a combination of local Bay Ridge and buffalo mozzarella. Wish me luck that our crappy oven doesn't go on strike halfway through baking!

        1. re: sfafard

          I just got done making this deep dish pan, I am an avid vegan dieter and I love to cook new things. I cooked this dough in my cast iron pan on 375 for about 30 minutes, it was the best tasting lightest crispiest dough I have ever made in my life, even during culinary school.


          1. re: sfafard

            Thanks for this recipe Sfafard! I make no claim to know what real Chicago crust should taste like, but as a Vegan, pizza can be a real challenge. the fake cheese just kills the whole experience and tends to burn before the crust is done... I decided to try deep dish so I could bury the "cheese" so it wouldnt get too overdone, as usual. Complete success! this crust is fabulous! I swapped half the olive oil for melted earth balance buttery sticks (melted) , topped it with fresh tomato basil and garlic puree, a light layer of Daiya cheese, a big pile of carmelized onions and roasted red peppers, and baked it at 400 for 35 min in a large cast iron pan. The texture was perfect, and it tasted buttery and decadent. Thanks for giving me back pizza to love! I will swear by this recipe from now on.

          2. Remember that the pans they are using to cook the pizzas in have been seasoned for years and years. A lot of the flavor comes from that.

            1. Cooks Illustrated took on Chicago Deep Dish sometime in the last year or so. Can't find the copy at the moment, but will see if I can dig it up.

              So far as I know, the buttery taste comes from butter.

              7 Replies
              1. re: eight_inch_pestle

                Sorry, but no on the Cook's Illustrated recipe. I tried it when I saw it on the show. It's a pan pizza crust like you would find in an airport lounge deep-dish pie, but it's nowhere close to a real chicago deep dish crust which is buttery and almost flakey. Chicago deep dish crust tastes like rich pastry. If you've never had it in Chicago, you probably don't know what it takes like. I grew up in California and always assumed I hated deep dish based on what was available there. Then I went to graduate school in Chicago and discovered how amazing real deep dish can be.

                1. re: saucedjen

                  Oh, I wasn't vouching for it, just passing along info. Haven't tried the recipe. Too bad it's no good, altho I still might give it a shot, if only to learn what not to do.

                  And, yeah, born-and-raised in Chicago, and a few years ago when I lived in delivery range I seriously had "Lou's" on the cell phone contact list. Drivers knew me by name.

                  1. re: eight_inch_pestle

                    There are two CI based recipes. One is from years ago, I think it uses potatoes or cornmeal in the crust. It is good for people who have never tried Chicago's. However, they put out a new recipe recently trying the replicate the buttery flakiness of a Chicago crust. It might be worth a look.

                    1. re: Becca Porter

                      Thanks for clarifying, Becca, I was definitely referencing the newer version. Will post a report sometime in the near future.

                      1. re: Becca Porter

                        I've made the new CI recipe several times. Some might bicker about its authenticity (cornmeal! gasp!), but it's hard to screw up and tastes very much like the real deal from Chicago. It takes time and practice to get it perfect, but it's pretty great. The buttery taste comes from a whole honking lot of butter.

                        1. re: NonnieMuss

                          If you want to make it right, then make it right. If you don't, then don't. Cornmeal in the dough (even finely ground cornmeal) lends an unpleasant grittiness to the pizza (which is why they don't use it). The buttery taste actually comes from the corn oil. I find butter (and milk) in a pizza dough to be unpleasant, but to each his or her own!

                          1. re: NonnieMuss

                            I finally saw the CI show and had a good laugh! there is no cornmeal in Chicago deep dish. There is no butter (except some chains grease their pans with butter--the buuter flavor comes from corn oil. And with the short knead, there's no reason to laminate the dough (although you can). And never, never cook the sauce.

                  2. The buttery taste comes from corn oil.

                    The correct recipe for authentic Chicago deep dish pizza depends on two factors: lots of oil (3 Tablespoons:1 cup all-purpose flour) and a very short knead (mix 1 minute, knead 2 minutes). Then a long rise (4-6 hours at rom temperature).

                    There is no cornmeal in Chicago deep dish pizza and never was.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: stevel6


                      I follow your recipe to the letter and I've made some phenomenal deep dish pizzas. I have one problem though. I just downloaded a deep dish recipe book written by the late Pasquale Bruno, the renouned food critic of Chicago. His recipe calls for 3.5 cups of flour to one quarter cup of vegetable oil. In addition, he also has a half cup of yellow corn meal. I'm hesitant to try the recipe because I don't want to waste my ingredients. I live in Japan, and getting ahold of anything remotely pizzaesque is extremely difficult and very expensive. Please advise.

                      1. re: stevel6

                        Sorry to burst your bubble but one of our greats Uno or Gino came out with a pizza maker (machine) for at home use and they had flour to go with it. In the commercial the owner of the machine stated there was some cornmeal in the flour. I forget his reasoning but he did say it. Maybe you should check with them Uno, Gino, Lou M.. I know it wasn't HRI.. in either case maybe an email to each for verification might help.

                      2. You can punch up butter flavor on the crust by brushing it with melted butter before and in the middle of baking. Can't help with a crust recipe, sorry!

                        1. this is supposedly the recipe from Gino's on East, another Chicago pizza institution.

                          I've used it with terrific success in the past:


                          1 Reply
                          1. re: sunshine842

                            This is not even close to being correct! There is no corn meal in authentic Chicago deep dish pizza, and certainly not in Gino's east! The recipe doesn't have enough oil--for 3 cups of flour, you need @9 TBS oil (and Gino's east uses about 95% corn oil and 5% extra virgin olive oil). if you knead this dough for the 10 minutes specified you wil get bread--not the biscuit-like texture of Chicago deep dish. Mix one minute; knead for 1-2 minutes.

                          2. Just spent a week in Chicago and found the recipe for Lou's crust on the internet:


                            55 Replies
                            1. re: bdals


                              The recipe is incorrect (not a surprise coming from FN). Malnati's pizza is very, very greasy and oily (inedible from my point-of-view). In the first place, the last thing you want for Chicago deep dish is bread flour--authentic Chicago deep dish has a biscuit-like texture which requires a lower-protein flour, like AP. There is not--and never has been--corn meal in Chicago deep dish pizza. The amount of oil in this recipe is far too low--it specifies 1/4 cup oil for 2 pounds of flour. 2 pounds of flour is about 4 cups, and a proper ratio for Chicago deep dish is 3 TBS oil: 1 cup flour. 1/4 cup is 4 TBS--what you need here is 12 TBS. And if I were making a Malnati's-style pizza (which I never would!), I would up the oil content even more, because of the greasy character of their pizza.

                              1. re: stevel6

                                Chicago-Style Deep-Dish Pizza - Published January 1, 2010. From Cook's Illustrated.
                                Here are multiple links to the recipe:




                                1. re: stevel6

                                  So. Steve.

                                  since you've come in on an old post and railed against the suggested recipes that others have posted -- why do you say they're wrong? From where does the authority stem to diss all the other recipes?

                                  (the recipe I posted says that the recipe came from a former employee of Ginos. Do I know that for sure? Of course not, but it's a good recipe, it's not bread-y, and it tastes good...so it's possible. Do I have any reason to believe you know what you're talking about? Absolutely not....but I'm willing to hear why I should.)

                                  1. re: sunshine842

                                    A home baker is not going to bake a pizza in a wood fired, brick pizza oven either. So an exact copy of a restaurant recipe may not be correct. What you are aiming for is a copycat with a similar taste, texture and consistency. If a satisfactory result, that pleases the baker, is achieved with different ingredients and methods at home, so what?

                                    1. re: sunshine842

                                      Steve you are on the right track. There is no corn meal in Gino's dough. I can't reveal the original recipe as I am a family member of one of the original founders of Gino's. But one thing I can tell you is the dough being made today is not quite the same as the original recipe from 1966. Once Gino's was franchised in the late 80's many things were changed for economies>

                                      1. re: sunshine842

                                        Before you make an attempt to vilify me or my credentials, take the time to try the recipe. Then make your post.

                                        1. re: stevel6

                                          Nobody can vilify your credentials if you don't state them. I didn't say you were lying, all I said was that on whose authority/what experience-education/why do you say that all of those recipes are wrong and that your way is the only right way?

                                          1. re: sunshine842

                                            I'm not at liberty. Let me just say that I have years of experieince at pizza making.

                                            Try the recipe--if you follow it precisely, instead of wasting time trying to discredit me, you will make an excellent pizza.

                                            1. re: stevel6

                                              Stevel6, you sound very knowledgeable and I've read through the entire post however I do not see an exact recipe that you suggest trying. Could you please post the recipe that you suggest will give the best results?

                                              1. re: Gunit

                                                The basic recipe is this (I will use 1 cup of flour as a base and you can multiply it as you like):

                                                1 cup all-purpose flour
                                                6-7 Tablespoons water ( the amount of hydration depends on the age of the flour, humidity, etc.)--I usually use 6 1/2 TBS. You can add more flour or water as necessary.
                                                3 Tablespoons oil (most of these places use cheap corn oil--I prefer extra light olive oil--Gino's east uses 95% corn oil and 5% extra virgin olive oil--canola is good, too)
                                                3/4 teaspoon yeast
                                                1/2 teaspoon sugar
                                                1/2 teaspoon salt (I use Kosher salt)
                                                Gino's east also uses cream of tartar, which i don't

                                                Mix for 1 minute, then knead for no more than 2. Let rise for about 6 hours or so. Punch down, then cover and let the gluten relax for 10-15 minutes or so. Then either roll it out (as Giordano's does) or press into a pan. Add cheese, toppings, sauce. bake a 450 for around 30 minutes--you'll have to experiment with time and rack placement because home ovens act in very different ways!

                                                For the sauce, I prefer 6-in-1 ground tomatoes (which Giordano's uses), but get some good quality whole peeled tomatoes and crush them by hand (drain the juice), if you like that better. Add garlic, oregano, basil, etc. I add sugar to mine.

                                                I like Stella mozzarella, but Frigo and Sorrento are good, too. Sorrento seems richer and creamier.

                                                1. re: stevel6

                                                  Thanks so much for the breakdown. I will use try this for the weekend and let you know how it turns out. Just curious what your thoughts are on cake flour vs APF.

                                                  1. re: Gunit

                                                    I have tried it with cake flour and did not like the results. You might, however--it's worth a try. Or a combination of AP and cake flour. Some pizzerias use a small amount of shortening, too--and that's worth a try to see if you like it.

                                                    1. re: stevel6

                                                      If you can get it in your area, you should try White Lily AP. It has very low protein levels for AP and is what most of us Southerners use for biscuits. It works great for Chicago deep dish.

                                                    2. re: Gunit

                                                      Depending on your oven, you may find it beneficial to parbake the crust a bit before adding cheese and sauce. Remember, the cheese goes on the bottom, then toppings, then sauce.

                                                    3. re: stevel6

                                                      Steve, that looks good. Do you measure the flour by spooning it into the cup, or do you dip the cup into the flour, then level it off? How sticky is the dough after kneading? Gotta try this! Thanks.

                                                      1. re: bakergal

                                                        I'm a hands-on person, so I like to scoop and level. Depending on the age of the flour, the humidity levels, etc., I might have to add a little more flour or a little more water, but that's the fun of it for me.

                                                        This is a pretty hydrated dough, so it comes out a bit sticky. If it's too sticky, just knead it for a few seconds with a little bench flour. The same after the rise. You should also oil up the dough ball before rising so it doesn't form a crust. If you choose to roll it out, you can flour up your rolling pin first.

                                                        This also makes an excellent thin crust dough. I like to roll it out very thin, then parbake the crust at 500 until it just starts to brown, then add sauce and toppings and stick it back in the oven.

                                                        You can also take this basic recipe and knead it for 10 minutes to make a thin crust. If you use corn oil and use a mozzarella-provolone blend (about 70-30), you will get a Home Run Inn clone.

                                                        1. re: stevel6

                                                          Good tips for the thin crust as well. Will definitely try that, may even do that before the deep dish again.

                                                      2. re: stevel6

                                                        How many cups of flour do you use/need for a deep dish in a 12 inch pan?

                                                        1. re: stevel6

                                                          This sounds about right, have to recheck my Giordanos recipe, its a heavy sweet dough with a lot of oil, and the gluten is not developed by kneading. It does resist getting soggy. I don't make ths often, after you load on a pound of Italian sausage and a pound of mozzarella, you have a heart attack on a plate. Yes it tastes good.

                                                          1. re: dijon

                                                            Giordanio's is not a particularly sweet dough. It has a lot of oil, though less than Malnati's/Uno's. They use 6-in-1 tomatoes and Stella cheese.

                                                            1. re: stevel6

                                                              stevel6, how many cups of flour would you use for a 12 inch deep dish pan? The first time I made mine I used 2 1/2 cups of flour. This was just enough to sufficiently cover the bottom of the pan for me so I had to improvise and made the bottom thinner than it should have been in order to get some crust along the sides.

                                                              1. re: Gunit

                                                                I would use 3 cups. But, if you want to play it safe, use 3 1/2, then trim off any extra (and make a roll out it!). It all depends on how thick you want the finished crust to be. Even if you roll it out thin, it does puff up, so I make mine fairly (a la Giordano's, which sends their dough through a sheeter).

                                                          2. re: stevel6

                                                            I'm a chicago native living in australia and have just recently had a few attempts at this.

                                                            thanks for all the input steve. i was wonder what kind of modifications to your recipe i might have to make if i was aiming for a nancy's crust (i find that to be better than giordanos)?

                                                            also - you say no cornmeal, but it seems to me that some places have a coarser grain at least on the exterior of the crust. do you know if any of the main places coat the pan in buttter and then cornmeal to get that effect? just a thought i had.

                                                            1. re: purduerowdie

                                                              I haven't had Nancy's for years, so I'm not sure what it tastes like. What you can do is to experiment with oil levels (a little less, a little more). But always the short mix and knead. A lot of the taste depends on the brand of cheese they use--there are a lot of commercial cheeses not available to the general public.

                                                              As for the cornmeal--some pizzerias use it (sometimes in combination with oil) as a non-stick agent.

                                                            2. re: stevel6

                                                              I can't wait to try this crust recipe. My wife and I moved to LA from Chicago back in July, and we haven't been able to find decent pizza, deep dish or thin crust, in the 6 months we've been here (at least there are 2 Portillos nearby for a quick taste of Chicago).

                                                              I do have a question about the "construction" of the pizza, though. I've read on a few sites and seen at least one video that says you should put a "top crust" on the pizza before adding the sauce, but I notice, Steve, that your recipe seems to call for no such extra crust. What I mean by this is that you would build the pizza as follows: 1) pan, 2) crust, 3) cheese, 4) toppings, 5) very thin top crust, and finally 6) sauce. Can anyone here comment on the authenticity of a "top crust" in traditional Chicago deep dish? I never really thought to look when I was devouring them for many years in Chicago. Thinking about it now, I can see how it might prevent the sauce from getting down into the toppings and cheese.

                                                              Steve, seeing as though you have essentially been named the de facto expert here, would you mind offering clarification on the issue? I would love to hear from anyone, though, not just from Steve.

                                                              1. re: eromin

                                                                I know Giordano's features that "stuffed" pizza, think there are several others like Connies, and Nancy's . I like it too, should work fine with the crust recipe mentioned above which is very similar to the Giordanos recipe I have.

                                                                1. re: dijon

                                                                  Thanks for your response, Dijon. I actually tried Steve's crust recipe with the top crust last night, and it was outstanding. The crust is exactly the taste and texture I remember from the various deep dish joints in Chicago, and the top crust worked out fine. The key is to make sure you roll the top crust *really* thin so it doesn't throw off the crust to topping/sauce ratio. I think I'll try it without the top crust next time to see how that turns out, but the crust recipe itself is spot on.

                                                                  I'm very happy that I found this website and the crust suggestions here. Looks like I won't need to go out for pizza in LA anymore.

                                                                  1. re: eromin

                                                                    Glad you liked it! I like to make it without the "stuffed" top crust. If you want to mimic Giordano's taste, you need to use Stella mozzarella, 6-in-1 tomatoes, and red pepper flakes in the sauce.

                                                                    1. re: stevel6

                                                                      Thanks for the tip on the Stella as well, Steve. I'm trying to find the 6-in-1 tomatoes near me, but so far no success. I understand that other people have found them at Safeway stores, so I'll probably check Von's next. I actually sent an e-mail to the company today to see if they could tell me where to find them.

                                                                      I think once I get the hang of how the Chicago places make them I'll start putting my own tweaks on things. Always start by imitating the greats.

                                                                      1. re: eromin

                                                                        Safeway does carry them. Also, check in an italian deli-style grocery store.

                                                                        1. re: stevel6

                                                                          That's exactly what the sales woman at the company told me about my area. She did not mention Von's (Safeway in LA) as carrying them here, but she did mention an Italian deli grocery store. I'll probably drive over there this week while I'm off from work to try them out.

                                                                      2. re: stevel6

                                                                        steve16, what are 6-in-1 tomatoes? And do you use part-skim or whole-milk Stella? I like Trader Joe's Whole Milk Mozz......and I remember Polly-O from other parts of the country being good....

                                                                        1. re: sandylc

                                                                          6-in-1 tomatoes are ground tomatoes used by many pizzerias. They are far superior to the other known brands. Look for them in Italian deli-type stores, if you can't find them in a big grocery store around you. Also, Pagliacci crushed are good. I use part-skim Stella, but a lot of pizzerias sue a combination of part-skim and whole.

                                                                          1. re: stevel6

                                                                            I generally use Muir Glen - they win a lot of taste tests as well. Do you know how they might compare to the 6 - in -1s?

                                                                            1. re: sandylc

                                                                              Muir Glen canned plum tomatoes are excellent--very good for pizzas. I haven't tried their crushed tomatoes, but I'm sure they're good!

                                                                2. re: stevel6

                                                                  So, my dough is rising at the mo but I'm panicking because after two minutes of kneading it was still an oily sticky puddle of goo. So I had to add flour to get it o resemble a ball of dough, not a whole lot though maybe just a few tablespoons. It was kneaded for a good 10 minutes at that stage. Should I call off all bets and just knead it into a thin crust? I've never mde dough or anything before so I didn't know what a biscuit-like dough should look like.

                                                                  1. re: MelDubya

                                                                    Somehow you added too much liquid! The dough ball should be a bit sticky, but still solid. There's nothing wrong with a adding a little more flour at that point, however, until it comes together.

                                                                    If you knead for 10 minutes, then I would definitely go for a thin crust!

                                                                    1. re: stevel6

                                                                      I just made a 2 cup dough ball. The dough wasn't really that sticky like Mel's, just slightly tacky.

                                                                      I coated a bowl with olive oil and got the dough ball shined up, wrapped the bowl with plastic drum tight and it's in the fridge until tommorow until 1pm or so. At that point I plan to take it out for a 4-6 hour room temperature rise and then bake just before the Superbowl starts.

                                                                  2. re: stevel6

                                                                    Do you rise at room temperature? What size pan does this recipe use?

                                                                    1. re: fasttimes

                                                                      Yes, room temperature for a long period--4-6 hours. I keep mine in the oven and once an hour or so, I turn it to 200 for a minute, then turn it off.

                                                                      You might want to experiment with an overnight (or longer) refrigerator rise. The yeast slow down when it gets cold, but are still working to make CO2. Then you would have to take the dough out and let it slowly come to room temperature and rise more (4 hours or so).

                                                                      I use 2 cups of flour for a 10" pan, and trim off what I don't need (but I don't use a top crust).

                                                                      1. re: stevel6

                                                                        I have used your recipe and let the dough a rise in our home kitchen oven (off with the oven light on). This works really well and the finished crust has a lot of flavor. I have also let it rise in the oven for 6 hours and then put it in a zip lock bag and placed it in the fridge until the next day. This crust was even better with more flavor.

                                                                    2. re: stevel6

                                                                      How thick do you make the bottom and side crusts?

                                                                      1. re: stevel6

                                                                        steve - thanks for the recipe, i can't wait to try it out. i'm from chicago and just moved to toronto. there is no good pizza here and deep dish is non-existent! what type of pan do you use? cast iron? seasoned? i've checked online and have only found cheap ones, which i assume aren't any good. let me know if you've got any recommendations, tips, or links for the good deep dish pan.

                                                                        1. re: stevel6

                                                                          I made the Holy Grail Deep Dish recipe last night, which also calls for corn oil, a short knead, and no cornmeal (of course!), and it came out with the right texture, but no flavor. The main differences I see between that one and your recipe are that it uses less oil and a much shorter rise. I do like a slightly less oily dough (even though I thought they were a bit too skimpy and added a little more than they asked for), but I think you are right about the rise time and I intend to try your version next--albeit with just a tablespoon or so less oil for the whole pie. I really expect the longer rise to yield more flavor. Thanks for your input!

                                                                          Also, I used the Muir Glen tomatoes whole tomatoes which I crushed myself, and the taste was off. I wish we could get 6-in-1s here in Florida. I think I'll try San Marzanos next time.

                                                                          1. re: stevel6

                                                                            Cheers, Steve! I just tried your recipe and it was brilliant. Now I just need to fine-tune a couple of things to my oven and environment. And I might try a few of the other tricks mentioned. Chicago-style pizza is a foreign concept where I am (Nashville, TN), so this is a treat. No more overnighting Giordano's (my personal favourite) for me!

                                                                            FYI: for anyone else having a tough time finding 6-in-1, you can order it from their website. They must subsidize shipping, because it was $1.50 for a fourteen-pound package of six cans. (Yes, $1.50 - that's not a typo). I gave up trying to find Stella cheese, but Sorrento was tasty.

                                                                            1. re: stevel6

                                                                              Steve -- I tried your pizza dough recipe last night and it's great -- thanks! Using the one cup of flour proportions yielded 2 6inch personal pan pizzas. I'm just curious as to how you got your measurements, did you start with baker's math? And those 6-in-1 tomatoes are the best! How much flour do you recommend for a 14" deep dish pan?

                                                                              1. re: stevel6

                                                                                Is this kneading/mixing time for a machine or by hand? I don't have a machine.


                                                                                1. re: stevel6

                                                                                  I made this recipe exactly (doubled ingredients) and like a few others here, also ended up with a sticky wet mess. I added a couple more tablespoons of flour, but I was hesitant to add more or mix any longer.

                                                                                  After 1 minute of mixing, it was absolutely in no shape to be kneaded by hand. So I used the dough hook on my mixer and let it go for the 2 minutes. It was definitely not a dough ball but I took a chance and scooped it into a bowl, let it rise for 6 hours and proceeded.

                                                                                  The dough was completely unworkable. I wasn't able to press it into the pans and certainly couldn't roll it out. But I went ahead and scooped it into 3 (6-inch) pans, did my best to even it out (it was still super sticky and wet) and added the toppings. After baking it actually turned out great. A delicious soft, slightly chewy crust very much like Gino's. I guess I'll try adding more flour (I think it could use at least 1/4-1/2 cup more) next time but since I had good results in the end, maybe it's fine? It is awfully humid right now, so that would affect the texture but I wasn't expecting it to be so wet.

                                                                                  1. re: stevel6

                                                                                    mine is now (thanks to you Steve) in the 6hr rising stage.
                                                                                    thankfully it's early enough where I have time for the rise so we can have it for dinner

                                                                        2. re: stevel6

                                                                          Doesn't a cup of unsifted flour weigh 5 oz.? So 2 pounds of flour cannot be about 4 cups - ?!?!?! Two pounds of flour would be closer to 6+ cups. I do, however, agree with the no-cornmeal stance.

                                                                          1. re: sandylc

                                                                            When you talk about oz and cup I don't think you can say definitely that one is equal to the other.

                                                                            1. re: Gunit

                                                                              Indeed, there is a potential range of weights (about 3.75 oz. to 5 oz.) for one cup of flour. It is dependent upon type of flour, moisture in flour, aeration of flour, etc. That said, a cup of unbleached flour will never be 8 oz. - it isn't going to happen. Therefore, 2 pounds of flour will never be near equal to 4 cups.

                                                                          2. re: stevel6

                                                                            Do you think Malnattis is greasy because they put their sausage on the bottom of the crust as opposed to the cheese first? It would make sense that all of the moisture and oil from the sausage soaks up into the crust.

                                                                        3. ATK just did a show trying to reproduce Lou Malnati's pizza crust and it looked pretty darn close -


                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                          1. re: weinstein5

                                                                            The last time I looked at ATK's recipe (I can't view this one), they added shredded potato or some such thing and not enough oil. Malnati's pizza has lots and lots of oil and again, the short knead to get the biscuit-like texture.

                                                                            1. re: stevel6

                                                                              I took a loot at the recipe from ATK and while it does not use potato flour or flakes it does use cornmeal which I am going to stay away from for the time being. Other sources I've seen from those close to the Chicago pizza scene also note that cornmeal is not used in the crust, while some do state that Gino's uses a small amount, I'm not a big Gino's fan so none for me.

                                                                              1. re: Gunit

                                                                                What I saw was an old recipe--they specified shredded potato, if I recall. There is no cornmeal in Chicago deep dish--the yellow shade from some pizzerias comes from food dye.

                                                                          2. On my own hit list...haven't tried it yet but there's a lot of butter in this one.


                                                                            White Sicilian Pizza with Flaky, Pastry-Style Crust

                                                                            Yield: Two 10-inch pizzas

                                                                            Prep Time: 15 minutes | Inactive Prep Time: 30 minutes | Bake Time: 12 to 15 minutes

                                                                            For the crust:
                                                                            2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for kneading and dusting pizza peel
                                                                            1 tablespoon granulated sugar
                                                                            1 teaspoon salt
                                                                            4 ounces (½ cup) unsalted butter, cubed and chilled
                                                                            2/3 cup warm water
                                                                            ½ teaspoon instant yeast

                                                                            For the pizza:
                                                                            Olive oil
                                                                            Shredded provolone cheese (or a mozzarella/provolone mix – I used about 1½ cups per pizza
                                                                            )Grated Romano cheese
                                                                            Garlic powder
                                                                            Dried basil
                                                                            Dried oregano
                                                                            Roma tomatoes, thinly sliced
                                                                            Garlic cloves, finely minced (I used 2 cloves per pizza)
                                                                            Salt & pepper

                                                                            1. Preheat oven to 500 degrees F (or as hot as your oven will get). If using a pizza stone, preheat it along with the oven. If not using a pizza stone, line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.

                                                                            2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar and salt. Add the cubed, chilled butter and, using a pastry blender or your fingers, work the butter into the flour mixture until it is mostly incorporated and looks like coarse sand. In a large measuring cup or small bowl, combine the warm water and instant yeast. Add to the flour mixture and, using a fork, combine until the mixture is evenly moistened. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead for a minute or so until the dough comes together and is smooth. Divide the dough in two, shape into balls, cover with a damp kitchen towel, and let rest for about 30 minutes.

                                                                            3. If using a pizza stone, do the shaping on a floured pizza peel, if not, do the shaping directly on the parchment-lined baking sheet (flour as needed). Take one piece of dough and shape into a 10-inch circle. I just use my hands, but you can use a rolling pin if that’s easier for you, just use a light touch. With a fork, prick the surface of the dough and bake for approximately 5 minutes. Remove from the oven, brush with olive oil, and top with Romano cheese, garlic powder, dried basil and oregano, then top with shredded provolone cheese. Add the slices of tomato, the garlic, then sprinkle with salt and pepper and additional Romano cheese, if desired. Return to the oven for an additional 5 to 10 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and begins to brown. Repeat with the second half of dough.

                                                                            8 Replies
                                                                            1. re: LUV_TO_EAT

                                                                              Looks good! It's the same idea--lots of fat, short knead time, like a biscuit or pie dough.

                                                                              1. re: stevel6


                                                                                The recipe book I just downloaded written by the late Pasquale Bruno calls for a 5 - 6 minute kneed. Please advise, as I have made at least 10 great pies using only your recipe posted on this site.

                                                                                1. re: Oogu48

                                                                                  If you've made at least 10 great pies with Steve's recipe, why would you try something else?

                                                                                  You can find the ingredients, and it works....keep the Bruno book for when you're back stateside and don't mind blowing a bowlful of ingredients if it doesn't work.

                                                                              2. re: LUV_TO_EAT

                                                                                This does look good - though I might use room-temp or even cool water and give it a longer rest so that the cut-in butter is not compromised. I assume that if you want to do the deep-dish this would make one pizza? I have seen on TV that the Chicago folks press their dough into the pan rather than rolling it, and I wonder how this effects the texture of the finished product?

                                                                                1. re: sandylc

                                                                                  The water temp is for proofing your yeast and you want it to be warm.

                                                                                  1. re: Gunit

                                                                                    You can proof the yeast first--during the proofing time the water will cool somewhat. Or use instant yeast (different from "rapid rise"), which requires no proofing.

                                                                                    1. re: stevel6

                                                                                      I haven't proofed in years. Instant is great.

                                                                                  2. re: sandylc

                                                                                    Some pizzerias press the dough into the pan by hand and others sheet it first, then drape it into the pan, like a pie crust. I think the latter makes a better finished product, but if you try both, you can find out which one you prefer.

                                                                                2. @ stevel6 you are sooooo right about how to make the pizza dough, I tried your recipe and the dough was perfect. The only addition I would make is to tell people to put the yeast in the tablespoons of water you recommend (making sure the water is the correct temperature for the yeast and let the yeast stand in the water for 10 to 15 minutes to let it activate). I didn't do that at first because I followed your instructions exactly and I just mixed the yeast into the rest of the ingredients. When it failed to rise, I added some new yeast to warm water, let it activate, and then added it to my original dough, adding some more flour because of the new water I added. THE PIZZA WAS FANTASTIC and I was born and raised in Chicago. Thank you stevel6 !!!!

                                                                                  7 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: gkclapp

                                                                                    I'm glad you enjoyed it! It really does come out well. You are correct about the yeast procedure--that's the best way to go about it. I'm just used to doing it in my own personal way and should have specified this.

                                                                                    This recipe also makes an excellent thin crust (usually I knead it for three minutes instead of two if I'm doing thin crust).

                                                                                    Lately I've been experimenting with cream of tartar, which gives the yeast an acidic environment they like and conditions the dough so it's very easy to roll out.

                                                                                    If you can find Stella mozzarella and 6-in-1 tomatoes, you will make yourself very happy!

                                                                                    Again, I'm glad you tried it and liked it!


                                                                                    1. re: stevel6

                                                                                      Wow do I have a craving for Chicago style deep dish now. I love it and nothing comes close here in San Diego. Never thought of trying it myself, but maybe I will with the help of this thread; it's a keeper. Steve16 thanks for taking the time to post your recipe and all the recs!

                                                                                      1. re: Island

                                                                                        Once you make it, you won't want to even go out anymore! As I said, the recipe makes a great thin crust, too (or, if you knead for 10-15 minutes, it also makes a terrific thin crust).


                                                                                        1. re: stevel6

                                                                                          steveI6, OT a bit since it's an entirely different pizza, but do you know how to make Sicilian style pizza crust...or what I've been told is Sicilian style? Rectangle with a thick yet light airy crunchy and buttery crust. Mmmmmm

                                                                                          1. re: stevel6

                                                                                            Steve, used your recipe for stuffed pizza last night and oh my goodness was it good!!!!!! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!! Now I can have a little of my sweet home Chicago no matter where we live!

                                                                                            I learned long ago that I definitely prefer to use a pizza stone for my thin crust pizzas. Can you make any recommendations on pans for the deep dish pies? Material, brand, etc.? I know a seasoned pan is best, but I have to start somewhere, right? Any advice you can offer would be most appreciated! Thanks!

                                                                                        2. re: stevel6

                                                                                          Steve have your experiments with the cream of tartar only showed a changed in the texture of the crust (i.e. being easier to work with/roll out) or have you noticed any difference in taste as well?

                                                                                          1. re: Gunit

                                                                                            I found no difference in taste. I used only about 1/8 teaspoon per cup of flour.

                                                                                      2. Here's a recipe that I adapted from one of Emeril's recipes:

                                                                                        Chicago Deep Dish Pizza Sauce

                                                                                        Makes 3 cups, (enough sauce for one 12-inch deep-dish pizza, more or less depending on your tastes)

                                                                                        2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
                                                                                        1 Tablespoon Garlic, fresh minced
                                                                                        2 teaspoons Basil, chopped fresh
                                                                                        1 teaspoon Oregano, chopped fresh
                                                                                        1/4 teaspoon Fennel Seeds
                                                                                        1/2 teaspoon Table Salt, (or to taste)
                                                                                        1/8 teaspoon Black Pepper, freshly ground
                                                                                        1/8 teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes, (or to taste)
                                                                                        1 (28 oz) can Italian-style whole peeled tomatoes, lightly squished
                                                                                        1/2 teaspoon Balsamic Vinegar
                                                                                        1 teaspoon White Granulated Sugar

                                                                                        In a saucepan over medium-high heat, heat oil. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Add herbs, seeds, salt, black pepper and red pepper flakes, and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes, balsamic vinegar and sugar and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 20 to 30 minutes. Remove from the heat. Allow the sauce to cool completely before using.

                                                                                        1. Chicago Deep Dish Copycat Pizza

                                                                                          Here's a recipe that I put together from advice here and elsewhere. This makes a deep dish
                                                                                          pizza that tastes very close to a Pizzeria Uno's Deep Dish Pizza.
                                                                                          Now if I could only clone Ike's House Dressing the Red Wine Vinaigrette. It is really good to dip the pizza crust in.

                                                                                          Makes One 12-inch Chicago deep-dish pizza
                                                                                          Total Time: about 7 hours (6 hour dough rise, 30 to 45 minutes baking)

                                                                                          1 1/2 cups (11 oz) (scant) Water (room temperature- about 70-F to 80-F)
                                                                                          1 teaspoon (0.38 oz) White Granulated Sugar
                                                                                          2 1/4 teaspoons (0.25 oz) Active Dry Yeast (or 1 packet)
                                                                                          3 1/2 cups (18 oz) All-Purpose Flour (don't use bread flour, we want a biscuit like dough)
                                                                                          1 teaspoon (0.25 oz) Table Salt
                                                                                          1/2 cup (3.5 oz) Cooking Oil ( 7 Tbsp Corn or Canola oil and 1 Tbsp Olive Oil)

                                                                                          -Add sugar and yeast to water, stir well. If not using instant yeast, allow the yeast to bloom in water for about 15-minutes.
                                                                                          If using instant yeast, you can use the water mixture right away.
                                                                                          -Stir in flour and salt. Mix well.
                                                                                          -Stir in cooking oils.
                                                                                          -Mix for 1 minute then knead for 2 minutes. You can use a stand mixer or by hand. Add more flour or warm water, a Tablespoon at a time, as needed, to make a workable dough.
                                                                                          -Don't over-knead, we want a biscuit like dough for deep dish pizza.
                                                                                          -Form dough into a ball, place in a large mixing bowl, coat dough lightly with oil, cover bowl and let dough rise in a warm place for 6 hours.
                                                                                          -Punch down dough and allow it to rest 10 to 15 minutes.

                                                                                          Assemble Pizza:
                                                                                          -Roll out or press dough into a 12-inch deep-dish pizza pan. Press dough evenly onto bottom and up inner sides of deep dish pizza pan.
                                                                                          -1st - Add a layer of sliced mozzarella as the bottom layer, on top of the dough. Place the cheese in tile-like layers covering the dough on the pan bottom.
                                                                                          -2nd - Add toppings, evenly distributed across pizza, as the middle layer.
                                                                                          -3rd - Finally add sauce, evenly, as the top layer. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and drizzle with olive oil.
                                                                                          -Bake the deep-dish pizza in a preheated 475-degrees F oven until the top is golden and gooey and the crust is a light golden brown, about 35 to 40 minutes.

                                                                                          PIZZA FILLING:

                                                                                          Bottom Layer: Cheese

                                                                                          1/2 pound sliced mozzarella cheese

                                                                                          Middle Layer: Toppings

                                                                                          1/2 pound Italian Sausage, hot or mild, crumbled
                                                                                          1/2 pound Pepperoni, sliced thin
                                                                                          1/2 Yellow Onion, cut into thin rings
                                                                                          1/2 Green Bell Pepper, cored and cut into thin rings
                                                                                          1/2 cup Fresh Mushrooms, sliced
                                                                                          1/2 cup Black Olives, thinly sliced

                                                                                          Top Layer: Sauce (makes 3 cups)

                                                                                          2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
                                                                                          1 Tablespoon Garlic, minced
                                                                                          1 Tablespoon Dried Basil, crushed
                                                                                          1 Tablespoon Dried Oregano, crushed
                                                                                          1/4 teaspoon Anise Seeds or Fennel Seeds
                                                                                          1/2 teaspoon Table Salt, (or to taste)
                                                                                          1/8 teaspoon Black Pepper, freshly ground
                                                                                          1/8 teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes, (or to taste)
                                                                                          1 (28 oz) can Italian-style whole peeled tomatoes, lightly squished (use "6 in 1 Brand - All Purpose Ground Tomatoes", if you can find it)
                                                                                          1/2 teaspoon Balsamic Vinegar
                                                                                          1 teaspoon White Granulated Sugar

                                                                                          1/3 cup grated Parmesan Cheese - to sprinkle on top
                                                                                          1/4 cup Olive Oil - to drizzle over top

                                                                                          In a saucepan, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Add the herbs, seeds, salt, black pepper and red pepper flakes, and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes, balsamic vinegar and sugar, and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until thickened, 20 to 30 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool completely before using.

                                                                                          Ladle the sauce over sliced mozzarella cheese and toppings as the top layer on the deep-dish pizza.
                                                                                          Sprinkle Parmesan cheese over sauce and drizzle with olive oil.
                                                                                          Bake the deep-dish pizza in a 475-degrees F oven until the top is golden and gooey and the crust is a light golden brown, about 35 to 40 minutes.

                                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                                          1. re: Antilope

                                                                                            You're a little light on the oil--it should be around 10 TBS for 3 1/2 cups floor (actually, since Uno's/Malnati's pizza is quite greasy, you really need a litle more), but otherwise this recipe should make a good crust.

                                                                                            I would recommend not cooking the sauce--there is no point in double-cooking it. Uno's uses crushed whole tomatoes, but Giordano's uses 6-in-1.

                                                                                            1. re: stevel6

                                                                                              Thanks for the help. I'll make it with those changes next time.

                                                                                              1. re: stevel6

                                                                                                steve do you brown your sausage first or do u cook the meat raw in the pizza?

                                                                                            2. watching America's Test Kitchen and seeing Christopher Kimball go to Lu Malnati's in Chicago, I took notes and didn't delete until I made that copycat recipe.
                                                                                              It was good, not perfect but good.
                                                                                              in their copycat they used butter in the dough then folded it over spread more butter on, folded over and repeated. this, to them, gave the buttery flavor that Chris tried to get out of the Lu Malnati cook.
                                                                                              so that said, I'd go with the recipe posted by LOVE_TO_EAT on this thread.
                                                                                              remembering that I jotted down the recipe from ATK's and when done and it was made, although, good I didn't keep the recipe.............so.................
                                                                                              more butter in dough and butter in bottom of skillet when baking and you may have a hit on your hand.

                                                                                              6 Replies
                                                                                              1. re: iL Divo

                                                                                                I was going to try that recipe, but I think Steve knows what he is talking about and am in the process of trying his. The dough is in the fridge as I type.

                                                                                                1. re: fasttimes

                                                                                                  Please let us know how it turns out. I've been saving this thread and want to try it when I get the time and tools. I too would like to know what pan you guys would recommend for deep dish.

                                                                                                  1. re: Island

                                                                                                    It turners out ok. Not as buttery as I had hoped. I used corn and olive oil like Steve suggested. I also used a 10 inch cast iron skillet.

                                                                                                    Steve, any suggestions on the oil? Should I go 50:50 corn to olive oil?

                                                                                                2. re: iL Divo

                                                                                                  I saw the ATK episode and laughed out loud! Lou Malnati's---like every other deep dish pizzeria in Chicago--uses oil and lots of it. It's essentially the same recipe as Uno's and if you care to, you can look at the ingredient list on their frozen pizza, which specifies corn oil--and that's where the buttery taste comes from as it does in Home Run Inn pizza. Some pizzerias do, however, grease their pans with butter.

                                                                                                  It's the oil and the short knead that makes the biscuit-like crust. of course, you can make a biscuit crust with butter, but the taste is all wrong.

                                                                                                  1. re: stevel6

                                                                                                    watched the lady chef at Dookie Chase use a glug of butter flavored fat/oil of some sort when she was making (I don't remember what) for a television demo years ago.
                                                                                                    she called it 'butter' as she added it but it was clearly a butter flavored liquid shortening of some sort. < like you'd buy at a restaurant ingredient supply store. years and years ago when I was in a fancy restaurant kitchen it was under the counter in full view and I noticed it but mentioned
                                                                                                    nothing to the chef as he was a friend and client and I didn't want to call attention to it. bet it's used more often than expected though...maybe even in Chicago deep dish pizza
                                                                                                    as the prominent butter flavor.

                                                                                                3. Here are the results of my Chicago Deep Dish Pizza experiment: I made two 12" pizzas on two different nights. The first used the crust recipe from the website: www.realdeepdish.com/RDDHolyGrail.pdf (aka RDD). The second used the recipe Steve16 (aka Steve) posted on this site - multiplying it for a total of 3 cups of flour per his 12" pan recommendation.

                                                                                                  Both were EXCELLENT! - far better than my past, feeble attempts. Both recipe authors stress the same fundamentals: plenty of oil, minimal kneading, and NO cornmeal. I don't know which one is closer to "authentic" or which one you will prefer. Here are my observations of the relatively minor differences:

                                                                                                  1. RDD's crust turns out exactly like his website describes. It's a bit thinner and crunchier than Steve's crust. The dough is a little easier to work with in that he instructs you to pull up a "paper thin" crust along the edge of the pan - which is possible to do. The total volume/weight of dough AND the percentage of oil are less than Steve's recipe. RDD has a very detailed recipes for 8 - 14" pans.

                                                                                                  2. Steve's dough is very hydrated and has a generous amount of oil. I was unable to form any sort of edge along the side of the pan. The dough just slumped back into the pan - perhaps I did something wrong? However, I went ahead and layered my ingredients in and baked it anyway. It still came out GREAT - instead of a crust edge, the cheese created it's own browned-crusty edge which was delicious. I didn't use the full amount of dough he recommended (3 cups flour) for a 12 inch pan.

                                                                                                  Bottom line: Steve's crust was slightly thicker, softer, and very rich. RDD's crust was slightly thinner, crispier. Both had that biscuit-like crumbly texture and tasted great. IMO both hit the mark as far as replicating Chicago deep dish pizza at home. Thanks!

                                                                                                  5 Replies
                                                                                                  1. re: KS111

                                                                                                    Thanks for reporting! I think that deep dish is the best when the cheese goes all the way to the pan and does its browny-chewy thing!!!! Besides, there is enough crust in a deep dish without a border with more crust!

                                                                                                    1. re: KS111

                                                                                                      I don't have the problem you report. I would keep experimenting to find the perfect match for your humidity, oven, etc.

                                                                                                      1. re: stevel6

                                                                                                        Hey Steve good stuff. I am testing deep dish for my restaurant and would like a larger batch. Would you suggest multiplying by weight. Very excited to give recipe a try. Tried other that called for cornmeal and didn't work so well.

                                                                                                        Also there was a tv show that had a pizza war with Lou and UNO. They were talking to Lou and he said they use a lot of butter in there dough and u can eat it raw and it is good. Now he might be fibbing a bit, what is your take.

                                                                                                        1. re: stevel6

                                                                                                          SteveI6: My crust is rising as I type. I could already tell the difference in the dough after I kneaded it (for not more than 2 minutes). My hopes are high! Thanks for all the advice on here!!

                                                                                                          1. re: stevel6

                                                                                                            Steve, first off thanks for all the help and time you have given all of us. Thanks to you my pizzas are almost Uno quality. I am having trouble with two things though. The sauce and getting the dough to become crispy all the way through. Should I throw the dough in for a bit first then add the rest of the ingredients? The sauce recipe I have is this but what tomatoes come close to Uno's recipe? 6 in 1 is to fine as Uno's is whole tomatoes. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks Steve. Here's the sauce recipe I'm using now and it's pretty good but not exact.

                                                                                                            2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
                                                                                                            1 Tablespoon Garlic, minced (I use the jar of minced garlic)
                                                                                                            1 Tablespoon Dried Basil, crushed
                                                                                                            1 Tablespoon Dried Oregano, crushed
                                                                                                            1/2 teaspoon Kosher or Sea Salt, (or to taste)
                                                                                                            1/8 teaspoon Black Pepper, freshly ground
                                                                                                            1/8 teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes, (or to taste)
                                                                                                            1 (28 oz) can Italian-style whole peeled tomatoes (crush with bare hands pulling tomatoes apart into chunks, discard any basil leaves or stems found in can. 1/2 teaspoon Balsamic Vinegar
                                                                                                            1 teaspoon White Granulated Sugar

                                                                                                        2. King Arthur has a recipe:
                                                                                                          • 4 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
                                                                                                          • 3 tablespoons yellow cornmeal
                                                                                                          • 1 3/4 teaspoons salt
                                                                                                          • 2 3/4 teaspoons instant yeast
                                                                                                          • 2 tablespoons olive oil
                                                                                                          • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
                                                                                                          • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil or salad oil
                                                                                                          • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons lukewarm water
                                                                                                          • 3/4 lb. mozzarella cheese, sliced
                                                                                                          • 1 pound Italian sweet or hot sausage, cooked and sliced; or about 3 cups of the sautéed vegetables of your choice
                                                                                                          • 28-ounce can plum tomatoes, lightly crushed; or 28-ounce can diced or chopped tomatoes
                                                                                                          • 2 to 4 garlic cloves, peeled and minced, optional
                                                                                                          • 1 tablespoon sugar, optional
                                                                                                          • 1 to 2 teaspoons Pizza Seasoning or mixed dried Italian herbs (oregano, basil, rosemary), to taste
                                                                                                          • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan or Asiago cheese
                                                                                                          • 2 tablespoons olive oil, to drizzle on top
                                                                                                          see this recipe's blog »
                                                                                                          1) To make the crust: Mix the dough ingredients, and knead — by hand, mixer, or bread machine — to make a smooth crust. This will take about 7 minutes at medium-low speed in a stand mixer.
                                                                                                          2) Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl or 8-cup measure (which makes it easy to track its rise), cover, and let rise till very puffy, about 60 minutes.
                                                                                                          3) While the dough is rising, ready your 14" deep-dish pizza pan. Grease it with non-stick vegetable oil spray, then pour in 3 to 4 tablespoons olive oil, tilting it to cover the bottom of the pan, and partway up the sides.
                                                                                                          4) Stretch the dough to make as large a circle as you can. You can do this on a lightly oiled baking mat, if you choose; or simply stretch the dough in your hands.
                                                                                                          5) Lay the dough in the pan, and stretch it towards the edges till it starts to shrink back. Cover , and let it rest for 15 minutes. Start preheating the oven to 425°F while the dough rests.
                                                                                                          6) Stretch the dough to cover the bottom of the pan, then gently push it up the sides of the pan. The olive oil may ooze over the edge of the crust; that's OK. Let the crust rest for 15 minutes or so, as your oven comes up to 425°F.
                                                                                                          8) Bake the crust for 10 minutes, until it's set and barely beginning to brown. While it's baking, prepare the filling.
                                                                                                          9) Drain the tomatoes thoroughly. Combine them with the Pizza Seasoning or herbs, and the garlic and sugar (if you're using them). Add salt to taste; you probably won't need any additional salt if you've used the Pizza Seasoning.
                                                                                                          10) Cover the bottom of the crust with the sliced mozzarella, fanning it into the crust. Add the sausage (or sautéed vegetables), then the tomato mixture.
                                                                                                          11) Sprinkle with the grated Parmesan, and drizzle with the olive oil.
                                                                                                          12) Bake the pizza for about 25 minutes, or until the filling is bubbly and the topping is golden brown. Remove it from the oven, and carefully lift it out of the pan onto a rack. A giant spatula is a help here. Allow the pizza to cool for about 15 minutes (or longer, for less oozing) before cutting and serving.
                                                                                                          Yield: about 12 servings.

                                                                                                          1. Can you give me Steve16's Chicago Deep Dish Pizza Crust Recipe?

                                                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                                                            1. re: tawascabin

                                                                                                              Steve16's Chicago Deep Dish Pizza Crust Recipe
                                                                                                              copied from up-thread

                                                                                                              "...The basic recipe is this (I will use 1 cup of flour as a base and you can multiply it as you like):

                                                                                                              1 cup all-purpose flour
                                                                                                              6-7 Tablespoons water ( the amount of hydration depends on the age of the flour, humidity, etc.)--I usually use 6 1/2 TBS. You can add more flour or water as necessary.
                                                                                                              3 Tablespoons oil (most of these places use cheap corn oil--I prefer extra light olive oil--Gino's east uses 95% corn oil and 5% extra virgin olive oil--canola is good, too)
                                                                                                              3/4 teaspoon yeast
                                                                                                              1/2 teaspoon sugar
                                                                                                              1/2 teaspoon salt (I use Kosher salt)
                                                                                                              Gino's east also uses cream of tartar, which i don't

                                                                                                              Mix for 1 minute, then knead for no more than 2. Let rise for about 6 hours or so. Punch down, then cover and let the gluten relax for 10-15 minutes or so. Then either roll it out (as Giordano's does) or press into a pan. Add cheese, toppings, sauce. bake a 450 for around 30 minutes--you'll have to experiment with time and rack placement because home ovens act in very different ways!

                                                                                                              For the sauce, I prefer 6-in-1 ground tomatoes (which Giordano's uses), but get some good quality whole peeled tomatoes and crush them by hand (drain the juice), if you like that better. Add garlic, oregano, basil, etc. I add sugar to mine.

                                                                                                              I like Stella mozzarella, but Frigo and Sorrento are good, too. Sorrento seems richer and creamier..."

                                                                                                              1. re: Antilope

                                                                                                                Steve16's Chicago Deep Dish Pizza Crust Recipe

                                                                                                                Baker's Percentage

                                                                                                                100%.........(125g) 1 cup all-purpose flour
                                                                                                                71% - 83%...(89g - 104g) 6-7 Tablespoons water ( the amount of hydration depends on the age of the flour, humidity, etc.)--I usually use 6 1/2 TBS. You can add more flour or water as necessary.
                                                                                                                33.6%.......(42g) 3 Tablespoons oil (most of these places use cheap corn oil--I prefer extra light olive oil--Gino's east uses 95% corn oil and 5% extra virgin olive oil--canola is good, too).
                                                                                                                1.8%........(2.3g) 3/4 teaspoon yeast
                                                                                                                1.6%........(2g) 1/2 teaspoon sugar
                                                                                                                2.4%........(3g) 1/2 teaspoon (table) salt (I use Kosher salt).

                                                                                                            2. Im a former employee of Lou Malnatis in Elk Grove Village, IL. Alls they do is brush butter on the crust after it comes out of the pan.

                                                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                                                              1. re: jbeardsley06

                                                                                                                What about the sauce? 6 in 1 tomatoes but what other ingredients in the sauce, any idea? Thanks

                                                                                                                1. re: DeepDisher

                                                                                                                  Believe it or not most restaurant sauces are very simple. The real taste comes from Roma or plum tomatoes. They are lightly seasoned with fresh garlic ( no more than a clove per 16oz can. Half teaspoon of oregano. Punch of salt half teaspoon of sugar and ground pepper. Most people over season when they make it at home.

                                                                                                                  6-1 tomatoes are the best. On east coast sclafani crushed tomatos are awesome too

                                                                                                              2. Use butter flavoring which you can find in the baking isle at most grocery stores

                                                                                                                1. I found both the crust and the filling recipe right on the Uno's website. No cornmeal or butter.


                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                  1. re: vadeltachi

                                                                                                                    Stevel's recipe is spot on. I too lived in Chicago and worked in a few pizza places. If you see cornmeal in the recipe, run. If you have a recipe from someone who has cornmeal in it it's not authentic. And if you see any recipe that calls for cooking tomatoes or includes onions... Also run. They have no idea what it is they are doing.

                                                                                                                  2. Nadia G. is doing a road show on Cooking Channel. The episode shown last night featured Chicago, and devoted a full third of the time to the deep dish. They talked quite a bit about needing a fat rich dough to standup to the heavy fillings.