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Get ready to enjoy an amazing mini Detroit Style Pizza right at home! This single serving recipe is a game-changer for pizza lovers. Known for its signature square or rectangular shape and a lusciously thick deep dish crust, Detroit Style Pizza traditionally features a generous layer of tomato sauce, a hearty helping of cheese, and classic pepperoni, all spread to the very edges. The beauty of this recipe lies in its simplicity and quick cooking time – just 15 minutes to bake!

Explore our variety of single serving and small batch pizza-inspired recipes: our savory Personal Pepperoni Pizza, innovative Pizza Bowl, unique Crustless Pizza Quiche, and delightful Pepperoni Pizza Monkey Bread.

RELATED: Game Day Recipes For One

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • Perfectly Sized for You: This single serving recipe is ideal for when you want a delicious pizza without the leftovers.
  • Customizable: Tailor it to your taste! From classic cheese and pepperoni to your favorite veggie toppings, this pizza lets you get creative.
  • Amazing Crust Texture: Thanks to the olive oil in the pan, the crust turns out buttery and crisp, offering an authentic Detroit Style Pizza experience.
  • Versatile Baking Options: Whether you use a 5×7-inch baking dish, a 5×5-inch dish, or a 6-inch cast iron skillet, each option delivers a great result.
  • Satisfying and Fulfilling: This recipe yields two generous slices, making it the perfect option for a fulfilling meal without overindulgence.

What Is A Detroit Style Pizza?

Detroit Style Pizza is a unique variety of pizza that originated in Detroit, Michigan. It’s characterized by its thick, deep dish crust, square or rectangular shape, and a generous topping of cheese, pepperoni, and tomato sauce that extends to the very edges of the crust. When baked, the outer crust becomes delightfully crispy and caramelized, adding a rich, buttery flavor.

A Family Favorite

When my son and his wife visited us a few weeks ago, they brought with them a delightful culinary surprise – a homemade Detroit style pizza for dinner. It’s a dish they often enjoy making, and my husband and I were thrilled to have the chance to try it. The pizza was absolutely delicious, and it sparked my inspiration. I was so excited by the flavors and the style of the pizza that I couldn’t wait to recreate a scaled-down version suitable for one or two servings. This mini Detroit style pizza is not just a recipe; it’s a cherished family experience that I’m now eager to share with you.

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.

If you have any ingredients leftover from this Detroit pizza recipe, check out our Leftover Ingredients Recipe Finder.

For the Detroit style pizza crust

  • Bread flour: It’s best to use bread flour for making Detroit-style pizza. This flour has a higher gluten content compared to all-purpose flour, resulting in a tender yet chewy crust with extra crispy edges. However, all-purpose flour is a suitable substitute if that’s what you have on hand. Keep in mind, using all-purpose flour may result in a longer rising time for the dough, a bit more difficulty in stretching it out, and a less crispy texture. Bread flour is the preferred choice for optimal results.
  • Yeast: Instant yeast, also known as “fast-rising” or “fast-acting” dry yeast, is ideal for this recipe. It can be mixed directly with the dry ingredients, eliminating the need to dissolve it in water first.
  • Salt: A quarter teaspoon of kosher salt is recommended to enhance the flavor.
  • Olive oil: Extra virgin olive oil is suggested due to its high quality and robust flavor. It’s the least processed form, retaining more of the natural taste and nutrients found in olives. If preferred, a lighter olive oil can be used as a substitute.
  • Water: The water should be warm, not hot. Microwaving it for about 30 seconds usually achieves the desired temperature.

Pizza toppings

  • Pizza sauce: Jarred pizza sauce is convenient and works well, but you might like to consider making a small batch of your own homemade pizza sauce. Alternatively, homemade tomato sauce is also a great option.
  • Cheese: Traditional Detroit style pizza uses brick cheese, which is a mild, semi-soft cheese akin to cheddar. In this recipe, mozzarella cheese is used for its melting properties and flavor. For the best melt, shred your own cheese rather than using pre-shredded varieties, which often contain preservatives that inhibit optimal melting.
  • Pepperoni: Add several slices of pepperoni for a classic topping. Extra pepperoni can be added to a mini Muffuletta!

Recipe Variations

This pizza is a canvas for your culinary creativity. Here are a few variations to spice things up:

  • Vegetarian Delight: Skip the pepperoni and top with mushrooms, olives, and bell peppers.
  • BBQ Chicken: Swap tomato sauce for BBQ sauce and top with grilled chicken and red onions.
  • Hawaiian Twist: Add ham and pineapple for a sweet and savory flavor.
  • Spicy Supreme: Include jalapeños, sausage, and extra pepperoni for a spicy kick.
  • Cheese Lover’s: Go all out with a blend of cheeses like gouda, parmesan, and mozzarella.
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How To Make A Detroit Style Pizza

The photo and instructions are here to help you visualize how to make homemade Detroit pizza. See the recipe box below for ingredient amounts and full recipe instructions.

Note on Bakeware: The accompanying process photos feature a 6.5-inch cast iron skillet, a departure from the traditional rectangular baking dish typically used for Detroit Style Pizza. The round cast iron skillet is a great alternative, especially suitable for high-temperature baking. Its smaller size makes it particularly ideal for those cooking single servings. This choice of bakeware provides excellent heat distribution and retention, ensuring a perfectly cooked pizza every time.

Make the pizza dough

  1. Combine Ingredients: In a bowl, mix the bread flour, salt, instant yeast, water, and olive oil. With instant yeast, there’s no need for pre-activation, so you can add it directly to the other ingredients. A spoon is all you need for mixing, making this a simple no-knead method.
wet pizza dough in a large mixing bowl.
  1. First Rise: After mixing, transfer the dough to an olive oil-lined bowl. Cover it with plastic wrap or a dish towel. Let it rise in a warm place until it doubles in size, which should take about 2 hours.
pizza dough in a bowl next to a bowl covered with a yellow dish towel.
  1. Prepare the Pan: Once the dough has risen, coat your baking dish or cast iron skillet generously with olive oil. Transfer the dough to the pan. Given its wet and sticky nature, lightly oiling your fingers can help in spreading the dough evenly.
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.
  1. Second Rise: Cover the pan with plastic wrap and let the dough rise for another hour.
pizza dough that has risen in a cast iron skillet.

Assembling and Baking the Pizza

  1. Add Sauce: Spread pizza sauce or tomato sauce evenly over the dough.
  2. Add Pepperoni: Layer slices of pepperoni on top of the sauce.
  3. Add Cheese: Cover with mozzarella cheese – I use a mix of cubed and shredded cheese. Then, dollop a few spoonfuls of sauce over the cheese.
  4. Bake the Pizza: Place in the bottom rack of your oven and bake for 15 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
four photos showing the steps involved in making a small pizza.

Expert Tips

  • Yeast Options: While this recipe uses instant yeast, active dry yeast is a viable substitute. The key difference is that active dry yeast needs to be dissolved in warm water before use, whereas instant yeast can be mixed directly with other ingredients.
  • Weighing Ingredients: For accuracy and consistency, using a kitchen scale is recommended. Affordable and easy to use, a kitchen scale ensures precise measurements for perfect pizza dough.
  • Handling Sticky Dough: If the dough sticks to your fingers, lightly greasing them with olive oil can help manage the dough without mess.
  • Troubleshooting Dough Rise Issues: If the dough doesn’t rise, it could be due to inactive yeast or incorrect water temperature. Also, a too cold environment hinders the rising process. A helpful tip is to let the dough rise in a slightly warm oven. Warm the oven for a minute, turn it off, then place the dough inside. Be cautious not to overheat the oven – sometimes, the oven light alone provides enough warmth.
  • Baking the Pizza: Preheat your oven to 500 degrees F, or the highest temperature possible, for optimal browning and crisping of the crust. This high temperature ensures the crust cooks perfectly without drying out. Ensure your baking dish is suitable for such high heat; if not, adjust to the maximum temperature your dish can handle.
a small detroit style pizza in a blue rectangular baking dish.

Serving Suggestions

Pair your freshly baked Detroit Style Pizza with these appetizing sides to round out your meal:

  • Fresh Tomato Salad: Complement your pizza with a light and refreshing Fresh Tomato Salad. The salad’s bright flavors and crisp texture provide a delightful contrast to the rich, hearty pizza.
  • Italian Chopped Salad: An Italian Chopped Salad, bursting with fresh vegetables and Italian dressing, is a perfect side dish. Its robust flavors and varied textures make it an excellent accompaniment to the pizza.
  • Tomato Soup: For a cozy and comforting addition, serve your pizza with a bowl of warm Tomato Soup. Its smooth and savory taste pairs wonderfully with the crispy, cheesy pizza.

Frequently Asked Questions

How will I know when the Detroit style 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?

In the photos, I demonstrate using both a 6.5-inch cast iron skillet and a 5×7-inch Le Creuset baking dish. Here’s some guidance on selecting the right bakeware:

Cast Iron Skillets: These are a top choice for baking, especially at high temperatures. Made entirely of metal, they can safely handle the heat without any risk of damage.
Ceramic Baking Dishes: Most ceramic dishes, like my Le Creuset 5×7 dish, are also suitable for baking. According to the Le Creuset website, this specific dish can tolerate temperatures up to 450 degrees F. If your dish is rated for up to 450 degrees, bake the pizza at this temperature but for a slightly longer duration to achieve the perfect crust.
Temperature Considerations: Adjust your oven temperature according to the type of dish you use. If your dish can withstand it, aim for a high temperature to achieve the perfect crust. Keep an eye on the pizza as it bakes, and extend the baking time if needed.
Avoid Non-Stick Pans: It’s important to note that non-stick pans are not typically designed for high-temperature baking. Their coating can degrade at high heat, so they are not recommended for this recipe.

Can I make the Detroit pizza dough in advance?

Yes, you can prepare the dough ahead of time and refrigerate it until ready to use.

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

Ways To Use Leftover Ingredients

If you have any ingredients leftover from this recipe, check out our Leftover Ingredients Recipe Finder or you might like to consider using them in any of these single serving and small batch recipes:

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!

Equipment

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

  • Combine Ingredients: In a bowl, mix the bread flour, salt, instant yeast, water, and olive oil. With instant yeast, there’s no need for pre-activation, so you can add it directly to the other ingredients. A spoon is all you need for mixing, making this a simple no-knead method.
  • First Rise: After mixing, transfer the dough to an olive oil-lined bowl. Cover it with plastic wrap or a dish towel. Let it rise in a warm place until it doubles in size, which should take about 2 hours.
  • Prepare the Pan: Once the dough has risen, coat your baking dish or cast iron skillet generously with olive oil. Transfer the dough to the pan. Given its wet and sticky nature, lightly oiling your fingers can help in spreading the dough evenly.
  • Second Rise: Cover the pan with plastic wrap and let the dough rise for another hour.

Assembling and Baking 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.
  • Add Sauce: Spread pizza sauce or tomato sauce evenly over the dough.
  • Add Pepperoni: Layer slices of pepperoni on top of the sauce.
  • Add Cheese: Cover with mozzarella cheese – I use a mix of cubed and shredded cheese. Then, dollop a few spoonfuls of sauce over the cheese.
  • Bake the Pizza: Place in the bottom rack of your oven and bake for 15 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
  • 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

  • Yeast Options: While this recipe uses instant yeast, active dry yeast is a viable substitute. The key difference is that active dry yeast needs to be dissolved in warm water before use, whereas instant yeast can be mixed directly with other ingredients.
  • Weighing Ingredients: For accuracy and consistency, using a kitchen scale is recommended. Affordable and easy to use, a kitchen scale ensures precise measurements for perfect pizza dough.
  • Handling Sticky Dough: If the dough sticks to your fingers, lightly greasing them with olive oil can help manage the dough without mess.
  • Troubleshooting Dough Rise Issues: If the dough doesn’t rise, it could be due to inactive yeast or incorrect water temperature. Also, a too cold environment hinders the rising process. A helpful tip is to let the dough rise in a slightly warm oven. Warm the oven for a minute, turn it off, then place the dough inside. Be cautious not to overheat the oven – sometimes, the oven light alone provides enough warmth.
  • Baking the Pizza: Preheat your oven to 500 degrees F, or the highest temperature possible, for optimal browning and crisping of the crust. This high temperature ensures the crust cooks perfectly without drying out. Ensure your baking dish is suitable for such high heat; if not, adjust to the maximum temperature your dish can handle.
Ceramic Baking Dishes: Most ceramic dishes, like my Le Creuset 5×7 dish, are also suitable for baking. According to the Le Creuset website, this specific dish can tolerate temperatures up to 450 degrees F. If your dish is rated for up to 450 degrees, bake the pizza at this temperature but for a slightly longer duration to achieve the perfect crust.

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. I tried it and it was fantastic. Super easy and delicious! I think I will use a smidge less salt next time but this was amazing. I took the advice of another reviewer and just made two doughs and I’m glad I did because I was not sharing! 😊 I made one in my cast iron skillet and one in my ceramic dish. We preferred the cast iron. Thank you for another excellent recipe! Your hard work on these recipes are appreciated!!

  2. Loved the pizza. So easy to make. I will try pre-made pizza dough if in a rush, but making the dough was half the fun 🙂

  3. That pizza was the bomb! I loved it. Perfect size even for two of us. Thank you for this wonderful site full of scaled down delicious recipes. This is the second one I have tried. Cornbread and pizza. Good stuff!

    1. Yes, it is too large. We recommend using a 6.5-inch cast iron skillet. You can also make the pizza in a 5×5-inch or a 5×7-inch baking dish. Just make sure to only bake the pizza at a temperature that your dish allows.

  4. Since Pizza Hut added Detroit pizza to their menu, I have been craving one. So glad to get this recipe sized down to a realistic size I can enjoy. So this weekend I will satisfy a craving I’ve had for at least a month but couldn’t justify ordering the one at PH.

  5. I tried the Pillsbury Pizza Dough and it worked perfect! I let it rise in my psn before putting the ingredients on. Also added some precooked hot italian sausage. This is a yummy quick recipe. Thank You Joanie

    1. This pizza is excellent! I used a small cast iron pan and baked for 13 minutes … next time will bake for 15minutes to get the bottom crispier. My go-to from now on!

      1. I’m so glad you enjoyed the pizza, Sharon. Thank you so much for your feedback.

    1. I have not tested this recipe with store bought pizza dough so I don’t know how much you will need.

  6. Excellent!! Once I mixed the dough for one, I knew I would want more so I mixed a second batch! So glad I did. I used King Arthurs all purpose flour which has a higher protein count than most and it worked just fine. I cooked both in cast iron pans. Cheese, pepperoni and jalapenos!! Yum! Thanks for the recipe!