Gluten Free Detroit Style Pizza Crust! Thick, chewy, & delicious, this pizza is easy to make at home. Wheat free, dairy free, + so good.
Have you ever had a Detroit Style Pizza? This gluten free pizza crust is about to become your new favorite. It’s thick, chewy, with a ring of crispy cheese wrapped around the outside and fluffy dough holding it all together.
I may be biased in my opinion, being a Michigander myself, but Detroit Style Pizza is amazing and I can't wait for you to taste this hidden gem of a pizza.
Free from: wheat, gluten, dairy, casein, fish, shellfish, soy, sesame, peanuts, tree nuts, coconut, corn, celery, and more
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What is Detroit Style Pizza?
Most people think of pizza as round with a thin crust or deep dish. But here in Michigan we have a different take on pizza: Square, thick, inside out, and ten-thousand percent delicious!!
Made in square baking pans and seasoned with olive oil, the crust becomes crispy on the outside with the most amazing chew on the inside. The toppings are placed inside out on the crust, to maximize flavor into the crust - perfect for gluten free! Cheese is piled high on the outside edges of the crust to make a cheese crown (yes, that’s what it is called). Finally, the sauce goes on top.
How to Make Detroit Style Gluten Free Pizza Crust
Begin with making your dough. This dough is slightly different from other gluten free pizza crusts out there in that it is a wetter dough, almost batter like in consistency. Don’t panic! We want it to be that way.
Start by proofing your yeast and sugar in warm water, somewhere between 100-110F. Let it rest for 10 minutes to activate.
Now add the rest of the water, olive oil, and the egg. Give it a gentle mix.
Pour the gluten free flour directly into the middle of the bowl and don’t mix. Add the baking powder to one corner of your flour mountain, the salt to another corner, and the apple cider vinegar to the third corner. We don’t want these ingredients to directly come in contact with the yeast mixture as it is too powerful. By using the flour as a medium, everyone is gently incorporated.
Mix all the ingredients together well and don’t be afraid if it looks too wet! Cover with a towel and set aside in a warm spot of your house for about an hour.
After an hour, the dough should have risen to double in size.
Preheat your oven to 425F.
Prepare your square or rectangle 8x10 or 9x13 pan with a generous amount of olive oil. Don’t forget to go all the way up the sides of the pan.
Place your dough in the prepared pan and gently press to the edges.
Pop the un-topped dough into the oven for 15-17 minutes or until the dough has poofed up. Remove from the oven and gently release the pizza crust from the pan with a spatula. If your pan needs more oil, give it a little more before placing the pizza crust back in the same pan.
Now you begin to top your pizza, remembering to go inside out for authentic Detroit Style Pizza!
First the meats (if using), then any fruit or vegetables, followed by lots of cheese. Make sure that you place a healthy amount of cheese directly up against the sides of the pan. This will form the cheese crown.
Finally, top the pizza with a few spoonfuls of sauce. Tradition says to place it in 2 or 3 lines down the pizza, but I like to get a little more fancy with my sauce drizzle.
Pop it back in the oven for another 12-15 minutes to let the cheese melt.
Remove from the oven and cut into 8 large square slices and enjoy!
This saves really well in the fridge for up to 3 days.
To freeze this pizza, make the crust as directed up to the point of topping the pizza. After you have par-baked the crust, the crusts can be wrapped and frozen for up to 3 months. To bake from frozen, let pizza crust thaw for a few hours in the fridge before topping and baking as directed.
Hungry for more pizza recipes? Check these out!
Gluten Free Pizza Crust (top 14 free)
Tomato Free Pizza Sauce (top 14 free)
Allergy Variations for Gluten Free Pizza Crust
This crust is naturally gluten free, soy free, dairy free, nut free, fish free, and more.
To make your own flour blend, make sure you check out my Gluten Free Flour Mix! It is allergy friendly and bakes up delicious gluten free recipes!
Need to make this without any nightshades? Make sure you check out my Tomato-Free Pizza Sauce!
Can you make this crust egg free? My guess is yes, with a flax egg. I have not tried this variety yet so if you make it this way please let me know your results!
To keep the entire pizza dairy free, make sure you top with a dairy free cheese or don’t use any cheese at all.
Did you make this recipe?
Please let me know how this turned out for you! Pop over to the Facebook Page to share your success or tag me over on Instagram with the hashtag #livingbeyondallergies I love to see your creations!
- 1 ½ cup warm water divided
- 2 teaspoon yeast
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 egg
- 2 ¼ cups gluten free flour
- 2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- In a large size mixing bowl, combine yeast, sugar, and ½ cup warm water. Let rest for 10 minutes to proof.
- After proofing, add remaining water, egg, and olive oil. Stir to combine. Add the flour, apple cider vinegar, salt, and baking powder. Mix until a thick batter is formed. Cover with a towel and let rest in a warm spot for one hour or until doubled in size.
- Pre-heat your oven to 425°F. Prepare a 9x13 baking dish with olive oil.
- Place your pizza batter in the prepared baking dish. Gently press the batter to all corners. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes or until the crust no longer looks wet.
- Remove from the oven and top with toppings, beginning with meats and veggies, followed by cheese, and finally with pizza sauce. Remember to place the crown of cheese around the edges!
- Place back in the oven for another 12-15 minutes or until toppings are fully cooked. Remove from the oven, cut into 8 square slices, and enjoy!
The nutritional information on this website is only an estimate and is provided for convenience and as a courtesy only. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.
Hungry for more pizza recipes? Check these out!
Gluten Free Pizza Crust (top 14 free) Tomato Free Pizza Sauce (top 14 free)
Thank you so much! I'm glad you enjoyed this recipe. 🙂
Tell me, why do you add baking powder and vinegar to the dough when there is already yeast there? For what? What does it affect?
Hi Natali! So there are a few reasons why I’ve added baking powder and vinegar to this dough.
First, since it is gluten free and gluten free dough doesn’t always react as strongly to yeast, it is added as an additional element of lift to the dough. The vinegar reacts to the baking powder in the oven and helps to create carbon dioxide bubbles while baking, making for a lighter and fluffier crust.
Next, vinegar helps to keep the dough soft. It’s a mild acid that changes the pH levels, helping the dough have a good crumb and texture.
Finally, vinegar helps to change the flavor of the dough. Again, since it lowers the pH levels, this creates a better depth of flavor, more similar to what you would taste in a wheat dough that has risen for 6+ hours. Since gluten free dough doesn’t really do well with a second and third rise (in my experiences) this really helps in the flavor development.
Don’t worry, it won’t taste sour or of vinegar at all!
Hope that helps! I love the science of baking and why things work. If you have any other questions, let me know!
Thanks for the quick response, Laura!
Your answer really clarifies something and helps to UNDERSTAND. And then many add, but they don’t really know for what, except for an auxiliary lift, but in my opinion this reason is not enough. You have explained in more detail.
Yes, I know that this amount of vinegar does not make the dough sour. And I noticed that if there is an unpleasant smell and taste in gluten-free flour (for example
rice flour can be different in taste and smell like Basmati or Egyptian rice), then vinegar softens or completely neutralizes this.
Thank you, now I will consciously and purposefully use this couple (baking powder + vinegar) in gluten-free baking along with yeast.
Thank you for sharing interesting and useful !!!
You are so welcome and wishing you many happy and delicious baking adventures!
What’s your personal flour mixture that you wrote about in a comment? I usually use King Arthur, but need to eliminate potato for a month. Thanks
So lately I've been mixing half King Arthur Measure for Measure with half of Bob's Baking Mix. I find that this combo has the best taste, chewy texture, and gets a good crust! If you don't want to mix half and half I recommend to use just King Arthur, either the Measure for Measure or the Baking Mix from King Arthur. They both provide a good crust!
If you're avoiding potato, I have a nightshade free flour blend that also works well in this recipe! You can check out my flour blend here.
What type of gluten free flour and yeast (quick rising or traditional?)do you use with this recipe? It looks amazing!
Thank you! My favorite flours to use are King Arthur Measure for Measure, King Arthur Baking Mix (just omit the baking powder if you use this one), Pamela's Artisan Blend, and my own gluten free flour mix. I've made this recipe with other flours but found these 4 to make the best! And my personal favorite one to use is a mix of 50/50 KAF Measure for Measure and KAF Baking Mix.
The yeast I use is always an active dry yeast. I haven't found a brand that I think rises better than another so use your favorite one. Please let me know what you think when you make this!!
This is amazing!