For several decades, Detroit style pizza – thick and baked in rectangular pans – was known only to Detroiters and those who had visited the region, but today, the city’s signature pizza style has grown in popularity, nationally and worldwide. 

It all started in 1946 at a tavern on Detroit’s east side with the end of World War II. Pizza wasn’t a popular dining option yet, but the dish started to catch on. Buddy’s Rendezvous Pizzeria began making what it called Sicilian style pizza, baked in rectangular, high-sided steel pans originally used in auto plants to give it a thicker crust.  

The Sicilian style would become a staple at a handful of restaurants over the next few decades including Shield’s Pizzeria in Detroit, Cloverleaf Pizza in east Detroit – now Eastpointe – and Loui’s Pizza in Hazel Park. By then, it received the official Detroit style moniker and most of those restaurants added additional locations. 


The original recipe was based on Wisconsin brick cheese and pepperoni, usually underneath the cheese and a thicker, crunchy crust. In the past decade, Detroit style has become more popular worldwide while other restaurants have been adapting the recipe with new flavors and tastes. 

One Detroit’s Bill Kubota discovers how Detroit style pizza has taken its place in the culinary world. He visits Michigan & Trumbull in Detroit, a pizzeria that despite its name got its start in Pittsburgh, and Amar’s Pizza in Hamtramck, which offers pizza that’s Detroit-Bangladeshi style.

Stay Connected: 

Subscribe to One Detroit’s YouTube Channel and don’t miss One Detroit on Thursdays at 7:30 p.m. and Sundays at 9 a.m. on Detroit PBS, WTVS-Channel 56.

Catch the daily conversations on our website, Facebook, Twitter @OneDetroit_PBS, and Instagram @One.Detroit

View Past Episodes >

Watch One Detroit Thursdays at 7:30 p.m. ET on Detroit PBS, WTVS-Channel 56.