Chicago is known for the deep dish pizza but this time you have to try out this Chicago thin crust pizza dough recipe also called tavern-style Chicago pizza.
This was new to me and since I love thin-crust pizzas, I thought I have to give this pizza tavern-style Chicago pizza a try.
It has a nice thin crust almost cracker-like but not there and the toppings are usually cheese and pepperoni. You can switch up the toppings and always change them to your liking.
Chicago is known for the deep-dish pizza with a thick crust and layer of meat, sauce, and cheese. This pizza is not a snack but a meal and eating a slice of this can be filling.
Thin-crust pizza is more common in states such as New York or Italy. Chicago thin-crust pizza is something that might not be known for most people but it tastes amazing.
Check out this tavern-style Chicago pizza dough recipe and I’m sure you are going to enjoy this interesting and amazing recipe.
It is very easy to do and you can make the best version of this pizza at home.
It takes on the classic hand-stretched pizza dough to create the thin pizza crust and make it crispier.
This type of pizza still incorporates some of the ingredients used in making deep-dish pizzas.
That is why it is unique as you would usually put light ingredients on a thin-crust pizza.
So if you want your thin-crust pizza to have some of the elements of a deep-dish pizza, then we have a perfect guide for you.
It is made with the best ingredients with a very easy guide to follow.
Chicago Thin-Crust Pizza Dough Recipe
Making The Dough
- 2 and a half cups of all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons of granulated sugar
- 1 and a half teaspoons of instant yeast
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- 3/4 cup of cold water
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
Step 1: Mix The Dry Ingredients
In a stand mixer, mix the all-purpose flour, granulated sugar, instant yeast, and salt.
Give it a turn for about 5 seconds to combine these dry ingredients all together in the mixer.
Since a mixer has a way to add more ingredients while you mix the other ingredients, I recommend using one so that the process will be easier and much faster for you.
Step 2: Mix The Wet Ingredients
After the dry ingredients are combined, mix the cold water and olive oil in a measuring cup and then slowly pour it into the mixer while you continue to mix the ingredients.
Allow the mixer to continue mixing the ingredients for about 60 seconds or until the flour has absorbed all the moisture and there is no dry flour inside the stand mixer.
Note: Remember to use only cold water as the mixer will warm up and kill the yeast.
The cold water will help reduce the heat inside while the mixer turns and keep the yeast active.
Step 3: Knead And Rise
Remove the dough from the mixer and place it on a floured surface.
Use your hands to knead the dough lightly by folding it inwards and turning it in a quarter turn on each fold.
Press with your palms and not with your fingers as it might create holes in the dough.
Roll the dough on the work surface until you make a big dough ball, and then lightly oil a big bowl.
Place the dough in the bowl and then cover it with plastic wrap.
Let the dough rise at room temperature until it has doubled in size, usually taking around 2 and a half hours.
Step 4: Divide And Stretch
After the dough has doubled in size, remove it from the bowl and then use a pastry scraper to cut it in two.
Each half would be enough to prepare one pizza so you can save the other half.
Place the dough on a lightly floured counter and then use your palms to press the dough outward.
Stretch the dough until you have made an 8-inch flat dough.
Bring out your rolling pin and cover it with flour as well. Roll the pizza dough into a larger circle until you have made a 12-inch crust for your pizza with at least 1/4 of an inch thickness.
- 8 ounces of tomato sauce
- 1 tablespoon of tomato paste
- 2 teaspoons of sugar
- Half teaspoon of Italian seasoning
- Half teaspoon of fennel seeds
All you need to do is to mix all these ingredients in a bowl and whisk it until the tomato paste has dissolved in the mixture. There is no need to cook the pizza sauce for this type of pizza.
- Pizza dough
- Pizza sauce
The Pizza Toppings
- 1/2 pound of coarsely ground pork
- 1 tablespoon of crushed fennel seeds, toasted
- 1 and a half teaspoons of sugar
- 1 and a half teaspoons of salt
- 1 garlic clove, minced to a paste
- 3/4 teaspoon of black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon of dried oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon of red chili flakes
Mix all these ingredients in a stand mixer and then mix at slow speed for 60 to 90 seconds.
Make sure that all the ingredients are mixed evenly together into the ground pork.
Making The Pizza
Step 1: Arrange The Toppings
Once you have stretched and shaped the pizza dough, put half of the sauce you have just made on top of the dough.
Use a spoon to spread it thinly up to the edge of the pizza dough.
Get your sausage and use your hands to pinch dime-sized pieces of it around the pizza dough.
Make sure that the meat is evenly distributed throughout the whole pizza that you have.
After putting the sausage on the pizza, spread 1 and a half cups of grated whole milk mozzarella cheese around the pizza up to the edges of the pizza dough just like the pizza sauce.
Step 2: Preheat The Oven
Preheat your oven to 500 degrees Fahrenheit and then place a pizza stone inside.
Allow the oven to preheat with the pizza stone inside it for at least an hour to make it hot.
Step 3: Cook The Pizza
Slide the pizza onto a pizza peel that has been dusted with cornbread and then carefully slide it into the oven on the pizza stone.
Close the oven door and let the pizza cook for 10-15 minutes.
Once the cheese has melted and the sausage is cooked, remove the pizza from the oven.
Let the pizza rest on a cutting board for 5 minutes before you slice it in squares and serve it!
What Is Chicago-style Thin-crust Pizza?
This type of pizza is cut in squares instead of the more common triangular sizes.
That is because the crust of this pizza is crispy, almost like a cracker that you cannot just fold.
That is also what makes it different from the New York-style pizza.
You cannot fold the crispy crust and the center slice of the pizza does not sog even with the sausages on it.
Speaking of sausages, the usual topping for the Chicago-style thin-crust pizza is sausage with fennel seeds in it.
That is what gives the sausage and the pizzas their unique flavor.
What Ingredient Makes Pizza Dough Crispy?
Pizza dough is made pretty much the same in any style that you would expect.
However, there are pizzas with chewy crusts, and there are more on the crispy side.
To make your pizza crust crispy, you need to add oil when mixing the ingredients.
Oil heats up faster and so it makes the crust crispy, plus, it prevents moisture from going into the crust.
Is Chicago-style Pizza Thin Or Thick Crust?
Chicago-style pizza, whether it is deep-dish or regular pizza, usually uses medium or thin crusts.
Even though the deep-dish pizza looks thick, the crust itself is thin.
The crust can go as thick as a quarter of an inch but it does not go thicker.
The same goes with the thin-crust option that uses about 1/8 to 1/4 of an inch thick crust.
What Is The Difference Between Pan Pizza And Thin Crust?
The main difference between the pan pizza and the thin crust is the thickness of the dough they use.
Pan pizza has a much thicker crust than a thin-crust pizza which makes up for the large toppings.
The dough used in thin-crust pizzas is also allowed to rise more which means that it can become crispier.
Pan pizza has more toppings so it needs a thicker crust to hold them.
If you like the post then do share it on social media!