Welcome to a deep dish lover’s dream guide to some of the best Chicago deep dish pizza restaurants in the city.
Pizza lovers, also known as Americans, eat Chicago style pies all across the country, but there’s nothing like the real thing. Less portable than other pizzas, deep dish is super filling, super cheesy and usually pretty affordable. Whether you prefer Chicago deep dish pizza delivery or dining in, layers of sloppy toppings or something simpler, this list has you covered.
We’re not here to debate whether Chicago style deep dish is superior to thin crusts, New York style, or Neapolitan - pizza is pizza, and some restaurants just do it better. So read on for our top Chicago deep dish pizza restaurant picks, maybe with a snack in hand (you’ll probably get hungry).
This is in no way a complete list of places to order a deep dish pizza in the city, but rather a few suggestions. Check out our Chicago restaurant list for more options, from the fanciest Mag Mile restaurants to sports bars in Wrigleyville serving Chicago's favorite sloppy dish.
And if you happen to be a deep dish lover in the Chicago area, feel free to make a place suggestion below and let us know. And don’t let your friends go hungry – share this post to let 'em know where they can fill up on hot, saucy, gooey goodness.
Don’t judge this Chicago pizzeria by its palatably lower prices. With a humble neighborhood vibe and great service, you’ll get more than you pay for. Nueva Italy customers rave about the buttercrust, the perfect crispy carb finish to generous layers of cheese, chunky zesty tomato sauce and fresh toppings. Pick your own, a classic like meat lover’s or vegetarian, or this Chicago deep dish joint’s very own Nueva Italy Pizza with pepperoni, mushrooms and olives. They even offer some healthier options like wheat crust. Or, again, that buttercrust. We won’t tell anyone.
Caramelized crust is Pequod’s claim to fame in the Chicago style deep dish scene. This pizzeria is so locally loved that it was able to reopen bigger and better after a fire in 2006. With big screens and full bars serving two floors, wait times aren’t bad and the appetizers are decent, but it’s the sauce and crust that keep customers coming back. Caramelized with a cheesy crispiness and tender center, spread with rightly proportioned tomato sauce, mozzarella and your choice of basic toppings, the crust is the dreamiest part of Pequod’s pies – deep dish or thin.
Saucy, sausagey, and deeply dished. A satiating chunky sauce, spread thick under generous toppings and an emphasis on their locally loved sausage, Pizano’s serves up some hearty Chicago style deep dish pizzas. Their prices are fairly steep, but that could be because of their popular media recognition. Loyal customers love the Rudy’s Special with sausage, mushrooms, onions and green pepper (and lots of cheese), but there are plenty more specials to choose from including two BBQ styles. For crust connoisseurs, they also offer gluten free and buttercrust options, which you can enjoy along with Pizano’s full bar.
Bacino’s is simple, great pizza. Chicago style deep dish pizza, no less. With conveniently personal pan sized pies, Bacino’s is a great option for lunch or dinner (because who can resist trying to finish off any size pizza). Their cheese is the highlight of their pies, velvety in consistency and slightly sweet, not too salty. Bacino’s is known most for their pizzas, but customers love their bruschetta and impressive pasta menu too. Expect fairly long waits at high times here, but order a drink while you’re waiting. They also offer a good wine selection and craft beers, including pints.
It’s all about the filling at this Chicago deep dish pizza pick. With a crust that’s light and crunchy to hold all the cheesy saucy goodness together, you’ll need a few minutes to decide what goes in your pie. Expect a well-spiced herby sauce and mozzarella along with your pick of cheddar, provolone or gorgonzola cheese. Add to that any of the basic meats and veggies, or go all out with prosciutto, roasted red peppers, garlic cloves or hot giardiniera. Bartoli’s has several specialties too, including the Chicago stockyard, an Italian meat lover’s with Italian sausage, bacon, pepperoni, prosciutto AND Italian beef. Not to mention it’s BYOB here.
With a classically old school Italian atmosphere, Al’s aims to serve authentic Italian-inspired, high quality deep dish pizza in Chicago. With an equally loved full menu of entrees, pastas and appetizers, it’s almost difficult to focus on just their pizza, but they make our Chicago style deep dish pizza restaurants list because of the pristine classic style they have every right to take pride in. Plus a few unique toppings like shrimp, cauliflower and ricotta cheese. Al’s prices are very decent, but fair warning about the service, which is known to be inconsistent with unpredictable speeds.
Like the name says, Toni’s serves a more health-conscious Chicago style deep dish, but you wouldn’t know it from the taste. They use only fresh, local and natural meats, produce and ingredients, which limits the topping options here but not the flavor. With such a high-quality focus, the simple specials at Toni’s, like Mario’s special with Italian sausage, green peppers, onion and black olives, are not only heart-healthy, they’re taste bud-happy. It’s a small mom and pop shop, but that helps them keep their recipes perfect, even if the wait is a bit long. We think it’s cool that they’re known to donate leftovers to homeless shelters, too.
Lou Malnati’s may be a chain (more than 30 locations in the Chicago area), but its success hasn’t stopped it from serving some of the most stellar deep dish pizza in the city. Some attribute their continued quality to being family-owned since 1971, hand-making each pizza from scratch. Inches thick, swimming in fresh tangy tomato sauce and maintaining their signature fluffy buttercrust, you almost forget you still get to order fresh toppings too. Choose your own or pick from one of Lou Malnati’s classics like the Lou, with a spinach mix, mushrooms and sliced tomatoes smothered in three cheeses. Mama mia.
Not all Chicago style deep dish pizzas are made alike, and some people prefer more sauce than others, different crust crispiness, overall saltiness…you get it. Pizzeria Due is for the crispy crust lovers who don’t crave the extra-buttery spin that other deep dish places create. The crispier crust serves the thicker spread of sauce well, and everything comes together under lots of melty cheese. Prices are fairly high, but you’ll be sure to go home full after devouring one of their specialties, like the Numero Uno with extra cheese and sausage on top of pepperoni, mushrooms and green peppers, the Four Cheese and Pesto, or the BBQ Chicken with red onions, citrus BBQ sauce and a cheesy blend.
The secret art of pizza here includes awesomely fast service, a parking lot in the city location and low prices that keep locals lovingly coming back. They also offer pizza by the slice here, and any true Chicago style deep dish pizza should be able to satiate the average appetite in a single, heaping slice. They offer a lot of other options like appetizers, salads and sandwiches, but we’re only interested in the deep dish, and this place doesn’t disappoint. Their specials include fairly standard toppings with slight variations like Art’s Hawaiian with green peppers, or the vegetarian with broccoli on top of other tasty veggies.
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