Chicago is the home of the stuffed pizza, and I've been missing it since we moved to Colorado. (Sorry, Old Chicago, your pizzas don't even come close!) I finally decided to make one myself. It turned out pretty well, and I'm wondering why I waited so long to try it![feast_advanced_jump_to]
What is a Stuffed Pizza?
I grew up in Chicago, which is one of the great melting pot cities. It's also noted for two pizza innovations: the Deep Dish Pizza, and the Stuffed Pizza. Created by Uno Pizzaria and Grill, the Deep Dish Pizza is just what it sounds like: a tall pizza filled with meat, sauce, and massive amounts of cheese.
But that wasn't enough for Chicago! Nancy's Pizza, a local chain, came up with the brilliant idea of putting a second crust on a deep dish pizza with more sauce and cheese on top. I remember going to Nancy's as soon I heard about it. When they brought it out, sliced it, and put a piece on my plate, I though I had died and gone to heaven!
A lot of cities claim to make the best pizza in the world, but don't take sides until you've had a Chicago Stuffed Pizza! Nancy's Pizza is still in business, and they will ship a pizza to you!
Rolling the Dough
You'll need to take the bread out of the freezer a few hours before you start making the pizza to give it time to thaw. As soon as it starts to rise you can make your pizza crust. I put the frozen loaf into a bread pan dusted with flour to let it thaw.
My first attempt at rolling the crust was a disaster. Then I remembered that I had bought a pie crust bag a couple of years ago, put it in a cabinet, and forgot about it. It took me a while to find it, but it made the job a lot easier.
Ingredients You'll Need
- ground beef
- bell pepper
- red onion
- frozen bread dough
- mozzarella cheese
- pepper jack cheese
- Parmesan cheese
- pizza sauce
- canned mushroom stems and pieces
- canned sliced black olives
- red pepper flakes
- dried oregano
Experience the Ultimate — Chicago-Style Stuffed Pizza!
Preheat the oven to 400°F.
Roll half of the bread dough into a 12" circle. My pizza dough bag was only 11" but it worked fine with my 9" cast-iron pan. (I've ordered a new bag that goes up to 12".)
Put the dough into the pan. Yeah, it doesn't look all that great. I'm still learning to work with dough. Just think of it as "rustic".
Put the ground beef, onion, and bell pepper into a skillet over medium-high heat. Sauté for about five minutes, until the beef is browned and the onions are translucent.
Put half of the sauce and cheeses on the crust.
Pour the beef mixture into the pan.
Add the mushrooms, black olives, and half of the oregano and red pepper flakes.
Were you paying attention to the instructions? I wasn't! I forgot to put the sauce in with the cheese! No worries, I put on top of the mushrooms and olives.
If this was a regular pizza, people would think what I did was a horrible violation of pizza law! Fortunately, this is a stuffed pizza! Roll out the other half of the dough, put it on top of the pan, and seal the edges. Now no one can see my mistake!
Spread the other half of the sauce over the top crust.
Add the rest of the cheeses, oregano, and red pepper flakes. Bake for 22 to 24 minutes until the top is golden brown.
Here it is right out of the oven. I didn't expect it to puff up like that. It did flatten as it cooled.
The crust was perfect, thin and crispy. Look at that amazing filling! Deep dish and stuffed pizzas are definitely knife-and-fork fare!
What do you serve with pizza? A beer is usually all I need, but a salad would be a healthier choice.
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📖 Recipe Card
Chicago-Style Stuffed Pizza Baked in a Cast-Iron Pan
Special Equipment Needed
- 1 skillet
- 1 9-inch cast-iron pan or other oven-safe pan
- ¼ pound ground beef
- ½ cup bell peppers any color, chopped
- ¼ cup red onion chopped
- 1 (1-pound) loaf frozen bread dough thawed and halved
- 2 cups mozzarella cheese shredded
- 1 cup pepper jack cheese shredded
- ½ cup Parmesan cheese grated
- 8 ounces pizza sauce
- 1 (4-ounce) can mushroom stems and pieces drained
- ¼ cup black olives sliced
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- In a large skillet, cook the ground beef, bell pepper, and onion over medium heat until the beef is no longer pink and the vegetables are tender, 5 to 10 minutes. Drain and set aside.¼ pound ground beef, ½ cup bell peppers, ¼ cup red onion
- Roll half of the dough into a 12-inch circle. Transfer the dough to a 10-inch cast-iron or other ovenproof skillet.1 (1-pound) loaf frozen bread dough
- Layer the crust with half of the pizza sauce, and the mozzarella, pepper jack, and Parmesan cheeses.2 cups mozzarella cheese, 1 cup pepper jack cheese, ½ cup Parmesan cheese, 8 ounces pizza sauce
- Top with the beef mixture, mushrooms, black olives, ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes, and ⅛ teaspoon oregano.1 (4-ounce) can mushroom stems and pieces, ¼ cup black olives, ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes, ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- Roll out the remaining dough to fit the top of the pie. Place the dough over the filling and seal the edges.
- Top the pizza with the remaining sauce, cheeses, red pepper flakes, and oregano.
- Bake until golden brown, 22 to 24 minutes.
THIS RECIPE IS FROM
The Spice of Your Life - https://thespiceofyourlife.com