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Any night can be pizza night with this easy mini Detroit Style Pizza recipe. This single serving pizza has a thick deep dish crust and is topped with plenty of cheese, pepperoni and sauce. It’s easy to make and bakes in just 15 minutes!

a pizza baked in a blue rectangular baking dish on a trivet on top of a brown wooden cutting board.

Step aside New York and Chicago style pizzas, this Detroit style pizza just can’t be beat!

Known for its square or rectangular shape and thick deep dish crust, a Detroit style pizza is traditionally topped with tomato sauce that is spread all the way to the edges of the pizza dough and a hefty amount of cheese and pepperoni. When baked, the crust becomes buttery due to the olive oil that greases the pan and the melted mozzarella cheese. The pizza is baked at a high temperature and bakes in just 15 minutes!

Why This Recipe Works

  • My son and his fiancée came to stay at our home a few weeks ago and made a Detroit style pizza for us for dinner. It is a pizza they make often and my husband and I were so excited to try it. It was so delicious! I couldn’t wait to scale down their recipe and create a mini Detroit style pizza.
  • The dough is very easy to make.
  • The pizza can be baked in either a 5×7-inch baking dish, a 5×5-inch baking dish, or a 6-inch cast iron skillet.
  • The crust is buttery, crisp, and absolutely delicious!
  • I keep the toppings simple with just cheese and pepperoni but you can choose your own favorite toppings.
  • A Detroit style pizza bakes in minutes!
  • This recipe yields 2 large slices of pizza.

Ingredients

bread flour, yeast, pepperoni slices, shredded mozzarella cheese, olive oil, salt and water in a measuring cup next to a jar of pizza sauce on a wooden cutting board

Ingredient Notes

See recipe box below for ingredient amounts and full recipe instructions.

For the Detroit style pizza crust

  • Bread flour: I recommend using bread flour when making a Detroit-style pizza. It has a higher gluten content than all-purpose flour and will give your pizza a tender, yet chewy crust with extra crisp edges. But if you only have all-purpose flour, it’s okay to use it. It makes good pizza crust too. Note: I tested this recipe with both types of flour. If you use all-purpose flour, your pizza dough may take longer to rise and will be more difficult to stretch out. The dough will also be more “watery” and won’t crisp up as much. My preference is to use bread flour.
  • Yeast: I use instant yeast, which is also called, “fast-rising” or “fast-acting” dry yeast. This type of yeast can be added in with the dry ingredients. There is no need to dissolve the yeast in water before using.
  • Salt: Use 1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt for delicious flavor.
  • Olive oil: I use extra virgin olive oil in this Detroit style pizza recipe as well as in every other recipe on One Dish Kitchen that calls for olive oil. Extra virgin olive oil is the least processed form of olive oil. It is an unrefined oil and the highest-quality olive oil you can buy. Because of the way extra virgin olive oil is made, it retains more true olive taste. It also contains more of the vitamins and minerals found in olives. It’s my favorite type of olive oil to use but you may use a lighter olive oil instead.
  • Water: Use warm water. I microwave the water for about 30 seconds. You want the temperature to be warm but not too hot to touch.

Pizza toppings

  • Pizza sauce: I use jarred pizza sauce which can be found in the spaghetti sauce aisle of your grocery store. You may use jarred or homemade tomato sauce instead.
  • Cheese: Detroit style pizza is traditionally made with brick cheese which is a mild flavored, semi soft cheese similar to cheddar. I use mozzarella cheese. I recommend shredding your own cheese rather than purchasing bagged pre-shredded cheese. The cheese will melt better when freshly shredded. Pre-shredded cheese contains preservatives which help to keep the shreds of cheese from clumping in the bag. This means that the cheese doesn’t melt as well.
  • Pepperoni: Top the pizza with several slices of pepperoni.

How To Make This Recipe

In the process photos below, I am using a 6.5-inch cast iron skillet. Although traditionally, a Detroit style pizza is made in a rectangular baking dish, I like using this round cast iron skillet because it can be used with high temperature baking. I find that this smaller size skillet is ideal for people cooking for one.

Make the pizza dough

Step 1: Stir together the bread flour, salt, instant yeast, water, and olive oil until combined. Since we are using instant yeast, there is no need to “bloom” the yeast before mixing it in with the other ingredients. I use a spoon to mix the dough ingredients together. This a basic no-knead method. All you need is a spoon and a bowl.

wet pizza dough in a large mixing bowl.

Step 2: Transfer the dough to a bowl lined with olive oil, cover with plastic wrap or a dish towel and allow the dough to rise in a warm place until the dough has roughly doubled in size, about 2 hours.

pizza dough in a bowl next to a bowl covered with a yellow dish towel.

Step 3: Uncover the dough. Pour a couple of generous teaspoons of olive oil into your baking dish or cast iron skillet and spread the dough along the bottom of the pan. The dough will be very wet and sticky so put a little bit of oil on your fingers to help spread the dough.

one photo of pizza dough in a white bowl and the other picture showing pizza dough lining the bottom of a mini cast iron skillet

Step 4: Cover the baking dish or skillet with plastic wrap and let the dough rise again for 1 hour.

pizza dough that has risen in a cast iron skillet

Make the pizza

  1. Cover the dough with pizza sauce or tomato sauce.
  2. Top with slices of pepperoni.
  3. Cover with mozzarella cheese. I used cubed and shredded cheese. Then, add a few spoonfuls of the sauce over the top.
  4. Bake on the bottom rack of your oven for 15 minutes or until cheese has melted.
four photos showing the steps involved in making a small pizza

Expert Tips

  • This Detroit style pizza recipe calls for using instant yeast however if you have active dry yeast, you can use that instead. The two yeasts can be used interchangeably in recipes. The difference between the two is that active dry yeast needs to be dissolved in warm water before using while instant yeast can be mixed in with the other ingredients.
  • I recommend weighing your ingredients. Kitchen scales are relatively inexpensive and you can find the one we use here.
  • If your fingers stick to the dough, you can lightly grease them with olive oil.
  • If the pizza dough does not rise, it is likely that the yeast wasn’t active or maybe the water you used wasn’t warm enough. Also, dough won’t rise if the room you’re using is too cold. I often put the dough in my oven to rise. To do this, first preheat your oven for 1 minute, turn it off, then place the bowl of dough inside. Make sure the oven doesn’t get too hot or you’ll need to wait for it to cool off. Sometimes, just leaving the light on in your oven will provide enough warmth without turning on the oven.
  • To bake the pizza, set the oven to 500 degrees F or as hot as your oven will get. At this temperature you will get a good browning and crisping of the crust before the dough has a chance to dry out too much. Make sure the baking dish you use can withstand oven temperatures this high. If not, bake the pizza at the highest temperature your dish will allow.
a small detroit style pizza in a blue rectangular baking dish

Frequently Asked Questions

How Will I Know If My Pizza Is Done?

In a hot oven, the pizza cooks in about 12 to 15 minutes. You will know it is done when the cheese is melted and sizzling and the top is very lightly browned. Run a thin metal spatula or a flat knife around the edges of the pan to loosen the pizza from sides of the dish.

What Is The Best Size Baking Dish To Use For A Mini Detroit Style Pizza?

In the pictures shown, I use a 6.5-inch cast iron skillet and a 5×7-inch baking dish. Cast iron pans are considered the safest for baking because they are made up of only metal which means they can withstand high temperatures. Ceramic baking dishes are generally okay to use also. I use a Le Creuset 5×7 dish and according to the Le Creuset website, this dish can withstand temperatures up to 450 degrees F. Bake the pizza at the oven temperature your dish will allow. Keep an eye on it and bake longer if necessary. Do not use non-stick pans because they are generally not suitable for baking at high temperatures.

Ways To Use Leftover Ingredients

If you have any ingredients left over from this Detroit style pizza recipe, you might like to consider using them in any of these single serving and small batch recipes:

a slice of deep dish pizza with cheese hanging off the fork

Serving Suggestions

Any of the single serving side dishes would go great with your deep dish Detroit-style pizza:

If you’ve tried this Detroit style pizza recipe or any recipe on One Dish Kitchen please let me know how you liked it by rating the recipe and telling me about it in the comment section below.

If you take a picture please tag us on Instagram (@onedishkitchen) we’d love to see!


Your Cooking For One Source
Because you’re worth it

Detroit Style Pizza For One

5 from 13 votes
Prep: 3 hours
Cook: 15 minutes
Total: 3 hours 15 minutes
Servings: 1 pizza
Any night can be pizza night with this easy Detroit Style Pizza recipe. This single serving pizza has a thick deep dish crust and is topped with plenty of cheese, pepperoni and sauce. It's easy to make and bakes in just 15 minutes!

Ingredients 
 

For the pizza dough

  • ½ cup bread flour
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon instant yeast
  • ¼ cup warm water
  • ½ teaspoon olive oil , plus more for the bowl and baking pan

For the pizza

  • cup pizza sauce or tomato sauce, plus more for topping
  • 1 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese , or use 4-ounces of cubed cheese
  • 6-8 slices pepperoni

Instructions 

Make the pizza dough

  • Stir together the bread flour, salt, instant yeast, water, and olive oil in a medium-sized bowl until combined.
  • Transfer the dough to a bowl lined with olive oil, cover with plastic wrap or a dish towel and allow the dough to rise in a warm place until the dough has roughly doubled in size, about 2 hours.
  • Uncover the dough. Pour a couple of generous teaspoons of olive oil into your baking dish or cast iron skillet and spread the dough along the bottom of the pan. The dough will be very wet and sticky so put a little bit of oil on your fingers to help spread the dough.
  •  Cover the dish or skillet with plastic wrap and let the dough rise again for 1 hour.

Make the pizza

  • Position a rack at the lowest position of the oven, and preheat the oven to 500°F (260°C). Make sure the baking dish you use can withstand oven temperatures this high. If not, bake the pizza at the highest temperature your dish will allow.
  • Cover the dough with pizza sauce or tomato sauce.
  • Top with slices of pepperoni.
  • Cover with mozzarella cheese. 
  • Add 3-4 extra tablespoons of sauce over the cheese.
  • Transfer the pizza to the bottom rack of the oven, and bake until the cheese is bubbly and the edges have browned, about 12-15 minutes.
  • Remove the pizza from the oven, run a spatula or a knife around the edges to loosen it from the pan. Transfer the pizza to a cutting board, cut, and enjoy.

Video

Notes

Expert Tips
  • This Detroit style pizza recipe calls for using instant yeast however if you have active dry yeast, you can use that instead. The two yeasts can be used interchangeably in recipes. The difference between the two is that active dry yeast needs to be dissolved in warm water before using while instant yeast can be mixed in with the other ingredients.
  • I recommend weighing your ingredients.
  • If your fingers stick to the dough, you can lightly grease them with olive oil.
  • If the pizza dough does not rise, it is likely that the yeast wasn’t active or maybe the water you used wasn’t warm enough. Also, dough won’t rise if the room you’re using is too cold. I often put the dough in my oven to rise. To do this, first preheat your oven for 1 minute, turn it off, then place the bowl of dough inside. Make sure the oven doesn’t get too hot or you’ll need to wait for it to cool off. Sometimes, just leaving the light on in your oven will provide enough warmth without turning on the oven.
  • To bake the pizza, set the oven to 500 degrees F or as hot as your oven will get. At this temperature you will get a good browning and crisping of the crust before the dough has a chance to dry out too much. Make sure the baking dish you use can withstand oven temperatures this high. If not, bake the pizza at the highest temperature your dish will allow.

Nutrition

Serving: 1pizza (roughly 2 large slices), Calories: 652kcal, Carbohydrates: 53g, Protein: 37g, Fat: 34g, Saturated Fat: 17g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 101mg, Sodium: 1344mg, Potassium: 480mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 5g, Vitamin A: 1112IU, Vitamin C: 6mg, Calcium: 589mg, Iron: 2mg

The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

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27 Comments

  1. This is hands down one of my favorite recipes! It is so easy and so delicious. I make it in cast iron, as recommended and it turns out perfectly. My go to for Friday night pizza.

  2. It was great! The only change I would make is to do it in case iron…I used a lot of oil but it still stuck to the Staub. Ate in pieces but it was great. And I will most definitely make again! Thank you

  3. I made this tonight and it was delicious!!! I baked mine in a 6.5″ cast iron skillet. I did use less mozzarella, and I put my pepperoni on top. The crust came out so nice and crispy. What a wonderful pan pizza recipe! I cut it into 4 slices, of which 3 would have been plenty for me but ate all of it since 1 leftover slice wouldn’t make much of a meal. This recipe is a keeper and I am sure I will use it often.

  4. HELP!!! I have made the dough 3 times and everytime the dough is dry. I dont know what else I can do.i love your recipes. Keep them coming.

    Thanks
    Linda T

    1. Hi Linda, it sounds like there might be too much flour in the dough. How are you measuring the dough? I recommend weighing your ingredients. Kitchen scales are relatively inexpensive and you can find the one we use and recommend on our store page. You can find the amount of flour in grams in the recipe box by clicking on “Metric”. If you don’t have a scale, you can still measure flour successfully. Here’s what you do:
      Use a spoon to stir the flour inside the container. You want to loosen it up in case it’s packed tightly inside.
      Use a spoon to scoop the flour into a dry measuring cup. Please keep me posted.

  5. I LOVE this recipe! It’s easy to make, the crust is light and crispy, and it’s the perfect size for one and possibly two, depending on the appetites!
    Like others have mentioned, I also like its versatility. I have varied the toppings, sometimes just salami, other times ‘fully loaded’, and sometimes with bbq sauce as the base, seasoned cooked chicken, caramelized onions, and a mixture of Swiss and mozzarella cheeses.
    Sure beats frozen, store bought pizza….by a LONG shot!
    Thanks Joanie! 🤗😋

  6. This recipe is as awesome as it is flexible. I’ve varied the toppings several different ways. Tonight I topped my pizza dough with browned, crumbled Italian sausage, marinara sauce, chopped red pepper, dollops of ricotta, shredded mozzarella. I also added a tablespoon of Italian seasoning to the dough with the dry ingredients.

    Left over pizza sauce goes into a silicone ice cube tray and frozen. Once frozen, the 1″ cubes are popped into a Ziplock bag and the bag thrown into the freezer. I’ve found that for a personal pizza, one cube is plenty. I microwave the cube for 30 seconds or until soft enough to spread on top of the dough.

    Oops! There’s the timer. Gotta go rescue my Sporky…and add caramelized onions on top.

    Buon appetito!

    1. Chris, I’m so glad you love the pizza recipe. Your version sounds so incredibly delicious! Thank you for your feedback and your tips on storing extra sauce.