Chicago deep dish pizza with mushrooms & bacon

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Chicago deep dish pizza with mushrooms, bacon & Cheddar recipe

This Chicago deep-dish style pizza is more like a pie and loaded with your favourite toppings. I fell in love with this style of pizza the first time I ate it in Minnesota many moons ago, so was excited to do it as part of a pizza recipe series for Kerrygold Cheddar. You can check out my black pizza with chipotle BBQ chicken, mushrooms & red onion, or my pizza Bianco with prosciutto, nectarines  & thyme.

Chicago deep dish pizza with mushrooms, bacon & Cheddar recipe

What size to make this Chicago-style deep dish pizza?

This recipe makes 2 small 18cm deep-dish pizzas with a very thick base. If you would like a thinner deep-dish base, increase the pan size to 22-23cm and roll the dough out thinner. Or one larger 30cm pizza. You will need to double the sauce quantity and increase the amount of bacon and mushrooms a little if you are making bigger pizzas. You could also replace the fillings with whatever you prefer.

The simple sauce is thick and slightly sweet which offsets the acidity of the tomatoes and it’s how I like it, but you could reduce it to 1 tsp of sugar if you prefer.

How to make a Chicago Deep dish pizza:

A Chicago-style deep-dish pizza is more of a pie with the fillings sandwiched between two layers of cheese. 

The tomato sauce and cheese form a delicious topping that is absolutely decadent and irresistible. 

Chicago deep dish pizza with mushrooms, bacon & Cheddar recipe

Chicago deep dish pizza with mushrooms, bacon & Cheddar recipe

Chicago deep dish pizza with mushrooms, bacon & Cheddar recipe

Chicago deep dish pizza with mushrooms, bacon & Cheddar recipe

Chicago deep dish pizza with mushrooms, bacon & Cheddar recipe

Chicago deep dish pizza with mushrooms, bacon & Cheddar recipe

Chicago deep dish pizza with mushrooms, bacon & Cheddar recipe

Chicago deep dish pizza with mushrooms, bacon & Cheddar recipe

Chicago deep dish pizza with mushrooms, bacon & Cheddar recipe

Chicago deep dish pizza with mushrooms, bacon & Cheddar recipe

Chicago deep dish pizza with mushrooms, bacon & Cheddar recipe

More cheesy goodness:

The most delicious cheese and onion quiche

Sweetcorn & cheese phyllo pies

Butternut scones with cheese & herbs

Easy lemonade scones with cheese & herbs

Toasted Cheddar cheese sandwich with buttery leeks

Cheese & onion bread with red pepper pesto

*Cooks notes – The dough of traditional Chicago deep-dish pizzas is often laminated with butter, but I found no real advantage to adding the extra fat here. The pizza is very rich and indulgent, and the dough was soft and pillowy enough. Increase the quantities of fillings if you are making bigger pizzas. The layering of ingredients is the opposite of a regular pizza with the cheese going on the bottom. The tomato sauce serves as the topping of the pizza which is very much like a pie.

Chicago deep dish pizza with mushrooms, bacon & Cheddar

A delicious Chicago-style deep dish pizza with mushrooms, bacon & Cheddar recipe.
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Chicago deep dish pizza with mushrooms, bacon & Cheddar recipe


Pizza dough:

  • 420 g cake or all-purpose flour 3 ¼ cups
  • 60 g polenta or fine yellow cornmeal 1/4 cup
  • 1 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 2 1/4 tsp 7g instant dry yeast
  • 300 ml slightly warm water 1 14/ cup
  • 60 gms 1/4 cup butter melted & cooled
  • olive oil for coating

Tomato Sauce:

  • 2 Tbps olive oil
  • 1/2 red onion finely chopped
  • 1- 2 garlic cloves crushed
  • 1 x 410gms tin of chopped peeled tomatoes
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes optional
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • Salt & freshly ground pepper to taste


  • 2 cups of grated firm mozzarella cheese
  • 1 cup 200gms grated Kerrygold Dubliner Cheddar (plus about ¼ extra for the top)
  • 125 finely sliced mushrooms
  • 150 gms back bacon roughly chopped
  • A light sprinkle of dried oregano optional


  • Make the dough 2 – 3 hours before you bake the pizza. Read through the recipe and allow time for all the steps.
  • Combine the flour, polenta, salt, sugar and yeast in a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook and give them a quick mix. Add the lukewarm water (around 32c) to the bowl. Ensure this is not too hot as it will kill the yeast. Add the melted and cooled butter and beat for around 5 minutes until you have a soft dough that will be pulling away from the sides of the bowl. If it is too thick add a little extra flour. If it is too dry add a little extra flour. It should be soft but not sticky.
  • Remove from the bowl and tip out onto a lightly floured surface. Bring the dough together in a ball. Press down with your finger and if the dough springs back it is ready.
  • Place the dough ball in a large bowl and coat all surfaces of the ball lightly with olive oil. Cover tightly with cling wrap or foil and then place a cloth over. Place the bowl in a warm place for 1 – 2 hours and allow it to double in size.
  • When the dough has doubled in size, tip it out onto the floured surface one again (it will be stringy at this stage and gently roll into a ball. Cut it in half if you are making 2 pizzas and reshape into balls. Place these back into the bowl, cover and let sit while you heat the oven and make our sauce.
  • Preheat your oven to 220C / 425 F and position the oven rack to the lowest third level of the oven (the layer below halfway). The oven will take about an hour to reach temperature and heat the stone.
  • While the dough is resting, make the sauce. Heat the olive oil in a medium pot and sauté the onions until soft (about 5 minutes). Add the minced garlic and cook for a minute. Add the rest of the ingredients and allow to simmer on a gentle heat for about 30 – 40 minutes. Use a potato crusher to break down any large pieces of tomato. Set aside for when you are ready to use it.
  • Prepare your toppings by frying the bacon in a pan for a few minutes until just starting to take on colour. Set aside. Slice the mushrooms and grate the cheese.
  • Lightly oil the tins with olive oil by wiping with a paper towel.
  • Roll out each dough ball so that it is big enough to cover the bottom and sides of your 18-23cm baking tin. Tuck the dough into each corner and press so it covers the sides. I found placing the unfloured side of the rolled-out dough down on the pan was easier to get it to stick to the pan. The underside with the flour did not adhere to the walls of the baking tin. If your cake tin is very high it should come up about halfway or ¾ of the way up the sides. If it is shallower. It should reach the top. Trim off any excess.

Layer your toppings in the following order:

  • Grated Mozzarella
  • Grated Kerrygold Cheddar
  • Bacon
  • Sliced mushrooms
  • Pizza sauce
  • Extra grated Kerrygold sprinkled on top
  • Bake for 25 – 30 minutes until golden brown. Loosely cover with tin foil to prevent over-browning if necessary. Remove and allow to rest for about 10 minutes before slicing.
Author: Sam Linsell

*This post is proudly sponsored by Kerrygold


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  1. that’s looking so delicious, curious about it’s taste.

  2. Gah, those photos! I’m so glad I took my younger daughter to Chicago in 2004 before she went off to college. We had great foodie experiences, and got photos with Rick Bayless and Charlie Trotter, at their restaurants, which was especially exciting for me. Then, we went to Giardano’s. And our lives changed. Chicago deep-dish pizza is the best. It’s pizza on crack. I made it once, but then found out that Giardano’s delivers, so it was, for years, what we enjoyed on Christmas eve. And I didn’t have to cook!!!

  3. So I make pizza for a living (mainly NY style and Detroit), but these photos are some of the best I’ve seen of Chicago style. Also, the last pics, what kind of pan is that? I love how tall you were able to get the crust. Fantastic work!

    Stefano Velia

  4. Thanks for the very kind words Stefano. I hired it and it’s a cast iron casserole dish that is not slanted so it worked well for the pizza. It also ensured a good bake on the bottom So a nice cast iron skillet would work too.

  5. Hi
    What is the correct amount of lukewarm water do you add?
    The recipe isn’t clear

  6. Hi Bethany – The recipe clearly states 300ml/ 1 1/4 cups. I can’t see why there is confusion? 300ml slightly warm water (1 14/ cup)

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