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The Best Detroit-Style Pizza In The US, According To Customer Reviews

Detroit style pizza pan
Detroit style pizza pan - Lauripatterson/Getty Images

There are two types of people in the pizza-eating population: those who like thin-crust and those who have seen the light and are thick-crust pie devotees for life. In Michigan, you'd be brave to admit to being anything but the latter. Detroit-style pizza has become synonymous with light, crispy crusts covering an indulgently fluffy center, topped with copious amounts of thick Wisconsin brick cheese, then red sauce (not sauce, then cheese).

It's a deceptively tough recipe to crack, yet countless restaurants claim to have done so all over the country. But which ones are actually worth your time -- and, more importantly, your appetite? We've scoured hundreds of online reviews for restaurants across the U.S. with Detroit-style pizza on the menu, looking for those whose pies consistently impress their patrons. Whether you're searching for a deep-pan fix in Detroit or beyond, these are the restaurants to add to your to-do list.

Read more: The Best Wings In Every State

Palazzo Di Pizza In Detroit, Michigan

Pepperoni Detroit pizza
Pepperoni Detroit pizza - Palazzo Di Pizza/Instagram

Palazzo Di Pizza

(855) 233-7872

1222 E Eleven Mile Rd Royal Oak, MI 48067

Just a stone's throw away from the center of Detroit, Palazzo Di Pizza has got its recipe for the city's iconic pizza down to a tee. Its lineup covers all the classics, like pepperoni and BBQ chicken, but also boasts more adventurous flavors such as chicken carbonara, sweet tropical heat, and Maui -- its indulgent spin on Hawaiian pizza, complete with brown sugar ham and applewood bacon.

The sweet and spicy BBQ chicken pizza is the real crowd-pleaser. There's a long list of Yelp reviews naming this as the highlight, offering the perfect levels of texture and flavor. While Detroit-style pizza tends to be more filling and less crave-worthy than other styles, Palazzo Di Pizza's pies buck the trend, with a significant chunk of diners declaring themselves regulars.

For those unable to finish their order in a single sitting (which seems to be the minority), the good news is that the pies also hold up well as leftovers, retaining the crust's crispiness while reheating without going soggy in the middle. It's a rare phenomenon in the world of takeout pizza. As one Yelp reviewer simply put it, "Where's it been all my life?"

Pizza Squared

Detroit pizza trays
Detroit pizza trays - Pizza Squared/Instagram

Pizza Squared

(628) 284-0013

885 Brannan St San Francisco, CA 94103

Pizza Squared's tagline is "hella good pizza," which tells you everything you need to know about this San Francisco eatery. After two years of "arduous testing," the Siu family proudly opened the first restaurant to serve Detroit-style pizza in the Bay Area back in 2018. Today, it's one of the most popular pizzerias in the city, doling out creative, locally-inspired flavors -- such as Clam Bacon -- atop a light, fluffy base.

This small but mighty restaurant (which offers no indoor seating but does have a few tables outdoors) has earned heaps of praise on Yelp. So impressive is the pizza that one reviewer even claims it defied their pie preferences completely. "The pizza bread tastes like focaccia and is super fluffy with a crispy bottom," they wrote. "There's plenty of toppings so it's a flavor explosion each bite. I usually don't like thick bread pizza but this one was so fluffy and delicious!"

While Pizza Squared also dabbles in Sicilian-style pizza, that variety doesn't make its Detroit slices any less tasty. That in itself makes it a gem in the eyes of San Francisco's most experienced foodies. "Multitasking is difficult to figure out," wrote Julia Chen for food blog The Infatuation, where the outlet has an 8.4 rating. "Unlike us, Pizza Squared, a slice shop in SoMa, has mastered the skill — they're making Sicilian and Detroit-style pizzas with ease."

My Friend Derek's In Seattle, Washington

Detroit pizza pies
Detroit pizza pies - myfrienddereks/Instagram

My Friend Derek's

3632 Woodland Park Ave N Seattle, WA 98103

Not only does My Friend Derek's serve up some solid pizza, but it also has the honor of being one of the coolest food outlets around. Founded by its namesake, Derek Reiff, during the depths of COVID-19, it defines itself as an "underground pizza" restaurant -- which means it has no physical location and is instead only available to order through Tock for pick-up from Fremont, Seattle, and only on certain days (which tend to be pretty inconsistent and are announced randomly on the My Friend Derek's Instagram page).

Challenging though it is to secure a slice, you'll see that it's worth the effort when you do. The restaurant is never one to be stingy with toppings, while each generously topped slice is also bordered with cheese-dusted crust and manages to tread the fine line between thick and dense.

There are multiple Reddit threads packed with praise for one of Seattle's most exclusive pies, with one simply titled: "To the Redditor who told me about My Friend Derek's, thank you. It t'was dank indeed." Users have described it as the best pizza they've ever had, while one Yelp reviewer declared that they "genuinely have no critique." Considering that said reviewer also describes themselves as Detroit-born-and-bred, that's the ultimate compliment.

Loui's Pizza In Detroit, Michigan

Pizza pies Detroit-style
Pizza pies Detroit-style - Roving Fork/Instagram

Loui's Pizza

(248) 547-1711

23141 Dequindre Rd, Hazel Park, MI 48030

The homeland of Detroit-style pizza has no shortage of restaurants worth your attention. A mainstay on the city's culinary scene since the 1960s, Loui's Pizza gets more attention than most. While its menu features all kinds of Italian fare, its customers are very much there for the pies, which some consider the city's best.

"Many places claim to have the best Detroit style, sadly none of them come even close to Loui's," one customer wrote on Yelp, where the restaurant has racked up over 400 five-star reviews. The traditional eatery -- which still retains more than a few vestiges of its iconic 1960s and 1970s aesthetic -- is famous for its thick cheese, tasty sauce, and unbeatable crust.

Flavors aren't quite as ambitious as some pizzerias, with the menu primarily listing old classics like straight-up cheese, pepperoni, and Hawaiian. However, what Loui's Pizza does make, it makes well. For proof of the location's charm, just take a quick look at the dozens of reviews explaining how far patrons are willing to travel for a quick bite.

Via 313 Pizza In Multiple Locations

Hands holding pizza
Hands holding pizza - Via 313 Pizza/Instagram

Via 313 Pizza

You'll find several Via 313 locations dotted around Texas, Utah, and Arizona, each bringing a genuine taste of Detroit to the south. That's because the chain's founders, Brandon and Zane Hunt, herald from Motor City and consider themselves to be experts in designing the perfect pies. Every pizza is made with the same pinpoint accuracy -- slow-rising dough for two days, throwing on two varieties of cheese (which can be dairy-free upon request) and any other toppings, and finishing it with red sauce right before serving.

Unsurprisingly, Via 313's pizzas are notoriously filling. A review from The Infatuation describes the restaurant's pies as "more akin to a cheesy bread-based casserole with toppings on top," which is far from a bad thing. Even the most deep-pan-averse diners have hailed its menu as one of the best, singling out The Carnivore, Hawaiian, and Four Cheese as some of the most elite flavors. With rotating monthly specials, however, it's impossible to declare one the all-time best.

As one Yelp reviewer so poetically put it: "All that said, Via 313 is simply the most amazingly delicious pizza ever made. Via 313 is the answer to the Question. It's faith for the faithless. It's the light in the darkness. It's Good triumphing over evil. It's purpose for the lost." Over the top, perhaps, but the sentiment is pretty accurate.

Buddy's Pizza In Multiple Locations

Detroit pizza cheese string
Detroit pizza cheese string - Buddy's Pizza/Instagram

Buddy's Pizza

Buddy's has long claimed to be the original home of Detroit-style pizza. First founded as a bar named Buddy's Rendezvous by Gus Guerra, the eatery owes its iconic recipe to Guerra's wife, Anna, who inherited it from her own Sicilian mother. Since serving the first of its square pies on the corner of Six Mile and Conant in 1946, it's opened several locations throughout Michigan -- all powered by the same expertise that led to the chain being dubbed pilgrimage-worthy and landing on lists for the best pizzas in the world.

The magic lies within the go-to Buddy's formula. First, pepperoni is placed on the dough itself, which allows the crust to absorb the flavors of the meat. Then comes the Wisconsin brick cheese (a mainstay for all Detroit-style pizzas, but only Buddy's uses this special-made blend) and other toppings before the signature three stripes of sauce are drizzled across the entire pie.

Foodie TikTokers Zach & Tee made the pilgrimage for themselves and were full of praise for the pies and their crispy crusts and rich sauces. "That's pretty fire," they concluded. The sauce is a winner for most customers, thanks to its hint of a spice kick and perfect sauce-to-cheese ratio. "It doesn't matter how far you've got to drive (clearly it didn't to me) or what it takes to get there," advised one enthusiastic fan on Yelp. "This place is a bucket list kinda place."

SoDough Square In Multiple Locations

Detroit square pizza tray
Detroit square pizza tray - SoDough Square/Instagram

SoDough Square

It may be best known for its roller coasters and cartoon mice, but Orlando is also home to a burgeoning culinary scene that's recently added Detroit-style pizza to its roster. SoDough Square currently has three locations -- one in South Orlando, another in Winter Park, and a third at University College Florida -- that regularly need to close their doors early due to overwhelming demand.

Of course, crowds don't tend to gather for average pizza. SoDough Square has earned a rep for being crispy in all the right places. "The edges were perfectly crunchy and addicting to eat," one reviewer said on Yelp. "There was fresh basil on everything that gave it a nice pop of fresh." Some have even claimed that it outdoes the aforementioned legend that is Buddy's Pizza -- and that's saying something. While this is true of pretty much every pie on the menu, the 6 and Conant and the Detroit Rob City are often considered the MVPs with their Michigan-inspired flavors.

Dtown Pizzeria In Los Angeles, California

Hand holding pizza slice
Hand holding pizza slice - Dtown Pizzeria/Instagram

Dtown Pizzeria

(323) 378-5785

8424 Santa Monica Unit D West Hollywood, CA 90069

Dtown Pizzeria is more than just a well-liked Santa Monica pizzeria; it's a two-time pizza world champion (yes, that's a real thing) in the pan division of the International Pizza Competitions in Las Vegas.

Led by Detroit native Ryan Ososky, it was technically the restaurant's $99.99 The Resolution pizza -- which combines shaved Japanese A5 wagyu beef with pickled red onions, scallions, and black truffle oil -- that took home the prize. However, we'd argue that the rest of the menu is just as worthy, with the Goomba (pepperoni, fennel pollen, parmesan, and tomato sauce) proving to be a real fan favorite.

Every four-slice pizza features the same light, fluffy crust, caramelized to perfection with Wisconsin brick cheese. "The cheesy crunch coating the bread is (chef's kiss)!" one Yelp reviewer said. And if the prices have got you concerned, don't worry -- not every pie will hit your wallet as hard as The Resolution does. The majority will set you back $25 or less.

Motor City Pizza In Lewisville, Texas

Plates pizza salad
Plates pizza salad - Motor City Pizza/Instagram

Motor City Pizza

(972) 654-6276

1425 FM 407 Suite 600, Lewisville, TX 75077

Motor City Pizza is a no-frills gem bringing a dose of Detroit to Lewisville. With walls adorned in Michigan sports memorabilia and a steady stream of Motown classics playing in the background of chatting patrons, you'd be forgiven for thinking you've slipped a thousand miles to the Great Lakes State -- especially once you get a taste of what's on offer.

Every Detroit-style pie has the same winning combo of light, buttery crusts, gooey cheese, and a topping of the eatery's house sauce (also known as the Boss Sauce). "My mouth is still watering thinking about that sauce," confessed one Yelp reviewer. "The perfect blend of spices that gives it just the right amount of flavor and kick."

The Boss Sauce may be the belle of the ball, but we'd be wrong to talk about Motor City Pizza without giving a shoutout to the appetizers, too. Its potato chip-crusted chicken strips -- which are made in-house and served with a garlic-French onion sauce -- are nearly as legendary as the pizza, with one happy customer even declaring them the surprise standout on the menu.

Blue Pan Pizza In Denver Metro

Detroit pizza held up street
Detroit pizza held up street - Blue Pan Pizza/Instagram

Blue Pan Pizza

Blue Pan Pizza takes its status as a restaurant serving Detroit-style pizza extremely seriously. Taking heavy inspiration from the OG location, Buddy's, its three restaurants (and a food truck) across Denver all follow the official guidelines set forth by Gus Guerra 80 years ago, including edge-to-edge cheese, blue steel pans, and a base layer of Margherita sauce and pepperoni beneath the cheese.

If the reviews are anything to go by, Blue Pan's academic attention to detail paid off. One patron declared it to be nothing less than the best pan pizza ever on Tripadvisor, and while there are a few other styles on the menu, reviewers seem to agree that the crust makes it the superior choice. "The texture of the crust was a delightful marriage of crispy and fluffy, creating a perfect balance that added to the overall enjoyment of the dish," a customer raved about Blue Pan's take on Detroit-style pizzas on Yelp, while simultaneously claiming that the New York-style pizza served up there "lacked the memorable quality that makes a pizza truly remarkable."

Ace's Pizza In Brooklyn, New York

Detroit pizza table
Detroit pizza table - Ace's Pizza/Instagram

Ace's Pizza

(718) 764-8200

637 Driggs Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211

While there are two New York locations for Ace's Pizza, ratings are consistently stronger for its original Brooklyn eatery. Decked out with vinyl booths and retro, 1980s-style decor – including a handful of playable vintage video games -- the Williamsburg pizzeria is as beloved for its atmosphere as it is for pizza.

The latter is, of course, what matters here (although any restaurant that lets you try your hand at Super Mario Bros. on a Nintendo '64 while stuffing your face goes up in our estimations). The Infatuation declared Ace's Pizza to be "the best Detroit-style pizza in New York," with fluffy crusts wielding a perfectly balanced combo of sauce and cheese. Bases are frequently praised by reviewers for being filling but not heavy, with all ingredients tasting fresh and high quality.

While every Detroit square pizza comes in a personal, medium, or large size, plenty of patrons agree that a medium (which comes with four slices) is enough to feed a party of two. If you're feeling ambitious, regulars also recommend ordering several personal-size pizzas to share so you can get a taste of the restaurant's more creative flavors, such as Vodka Meatball and Hot Burrata. Just be aware that you may need to wait for a table; thanks to its small size, the restaurant gets very full very quickly, especially at the weekend.

Fuji & Vi's In Pasadena, California

Detroit pizza square
Detroit pizza square - theyummaster/Instagram

Fuji & Vi's

(626) 345-5231

950 E Colorado Blvd Ste 203 Pasadena, CA 91106

Pizza isn't the only thing on offer at Fuji & Vi's, but to many, it's the best. Reviews for the Los Angeles restaurant are abuzz with the equivalent of love declarations for its pies and their caramelized cheese, doughy crusts, and generous toppings.

As one patron joyfully summarised on Yelp, "This pizza is the paradigm of what a thick square slice of pizza should be -- a sauce that is deliciously balanced between sweet, tangy, and savory -- the perfect intermediary between cheese and carbs."

Although prices are pretty high (an eight-square pizza will set you back as much as $26 before tax), portions are the opposite of stingy, with customers often taking their leftovers home to stretch them into two, even three, meals. You also have the freedom to create your own pizza if none of the specialty pies catch your eye.

Brown Dog Pizza In Telluride, Colorado

Detroit pizza tray
Detroit pizza tray - Brown Dog Pizza/Instagram

Brown Dog Pizza

(970) 728-8046

110 E Colorado Ave, Telluride, CO 81435

Back in 2014, Brown Dog Pizza won an award for its skill in whipping up Detroit-style pies. The award-winning pizza in question was the Brooklyn Bridge -- a magical combo of Brown Dog Pizza's signature sauce, mozzarella, brick cheese, creamy New York ricotta, and pepperoni -- which remains on the menu to this day for anyone looking for some hearty fare in Telluride.

While the Brooklyn Bridge pizza is still given regular shout-outs in Brown Dog Pizza's most-glowing reviews, it's just one of many flavors sending patrons (and their stomachs) home feeling content. Whatever hits their table, reviewers  roundlypraise the unmatched quality of the cheese and crust. Its gluten-free crusts are just as well-reviewed as their gluten-filled counterparts, which is a rarity for pizzerias.

The buzzy atmosphere also draws plenty of compliments. However, this is another über-popular spot that's seen a huge surge of attention in recent years, and reservations aren't accepted, meaning you'll want to arrive as early as possible to secure your seats.

Methodology

Hand Detroit-style pizza
Hand Detroit-style pizza - James Andrews/Getty Images

Everyone knows that if you're looking for Detroit-style pizza, the best place to start is, well, Detroit. However, we wanted to track down some of the best spots serving up these deep-dish delights all over the U.S.

To do this, we combed through hundreds of customer reviews on the likes of Tripadvisor, Yelp, and food blogs, as well as the recommendations and first-hand experiences provided by enthusiastic foodies on social media sites like TikTok and Reddit. These are the restaurants we found to have the most overwhelmingly positive experiences and offerings that would impress Detroit-style enthusiasts in Michigan and beyond.

Read the original article on Mashed.