When searching for the best pizza, Gothamites tend to gravitate toward classic New York–style folding slices and bubbly, Neapolitan-inspired rounds. While we’re always down for a classic pie from Italian restaurants or a good ol’ pepperoni slice, we’d be lying if we didn’t admit there are times we crave the thick, casserole-like quality of a meaty Chicago deep-dish. Since cheap eats cravings are meant to be satisfied, we happily deviated from the thin-crust norm (and sub-par slices from 24-hour pizza spots), and rounded up the standout eateries slinging deep-dish slices. Unfortunately, they’re in short supply here in NYC, but a cheesy Detroit corner slice or spongy Sicilian square will also do the trick in a pinch.
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Best deep dish pizza in NYC
Scores of hungry New Yorkers and homesick Chicagoans have been flocking to this neighborhood pizzeria since North Shore native Emmett Burke first opened its doors in 2013, and for good reason: The Chicago-style deep-dish pies are heart-slowingly authentic. Consider the Gabe Froman—a 10-inch round of crackly golden crust blanketed with layers of melty mozzarella, tangy-sweet tomato sauce, fresh spinach and half-moons of crumbled sausage and spicy pepperoni. Ask for a side of house-made dill-infused ranch for dipping. You can thank us later.
Bushwick’s late-night pizza bar dishes out fluffy, inch-thick rounds of the Greek variety (think Chicago-style light). Baked in a shallow pan, Archie’s serves pizza by the pie or slice, offering cash-strapped customers massive quarter-pie slices for only $4. When in doubt, go for the vegetarian slice of the day, which can include anything from jalapeño and pineapple to onion and mushroom. Then test your tolerance with the smorgasbord of hot sauces, with flavor profiles ranging from mild savory garlic to hellfire habanero.
This Detroit-style spin-off of Clinton Hill’s divine wood-fired darling Emily is good enough to convert any folding-slice disciple. The rectangular, pan-baked Emmy pie boasts six slices of buttery, inch-thick air-pocked dough festooned with gooey mozzarella, zippy banana peppers and thinly sliced red onions, complemented by tangy, cilantro-mint ranch drizzles and a side of dipping marinara.
Well-cemented as a Gotham paragon, Prince Street Pizza slings line-worthy Neapolitan and Sicilian slices of equal quality. Sink your teeth into the gummy, hallmark crust of the Sicilian-style square adorned with a splatter of tangy sauce, ribbons of gooey cheese and pockets of spicy pepperoni. Wash it all down with a cold Peroni as you cross Prince Street.
Brooklyn’s beloved Bensonhurst stalwart has been dishing out doughy, Sicilian squares since 1939. Locals and day-trippers alike line up for a taste of the famously thick slices slathered in sweet red sauce and generous layers of melted mozzarella and crumbled parm. Don’t forget to save room for the legendary spumoni: creamy swirls of vanilla, chocolate and pistachio ice cream piled high in a paper Dixie cup.
Pizza and dive bars go hand in hand
This Prospect Heights pizza and pasta joint has a dedicated following among the neighborhood’s residents. The menu reads like any typical old-school Italian restaurant, but the focus on seasonal ingredients sets Amorina apart. The special “Will to Live” pizza changes nightly—one day, it could be made with fresh ramp pesto and mozzarella, and the next, it could be a meaty sausage pie. Classics like the margherita ($12) and tricolore ($15) pizzas make an appearance, as do more inventive options like the gorgonzola e frutta, with wine-soaked figs, caramelized pears and a drizzle of honey. If you want something other than a slice, there’s plenty of pasta to choose from—think rigatoni with cremini and porcini mushrooms ($15.50), baked ziti with smoked mozzarella, stewed tomatoes and bechamel sauce ($15) and eggplant parmigiana ($15). The restaurant serves up all kinds of traditional sweets for dessert, like ricotta cheesecake with orange and a flourless chocolate cake with caramel (both $7).
Venue says: “Will To Live Pizza: Ricotta, Roasted Winter Squash, Caramelized Onion, Speck”