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The Different Types of Italian Food You Should Try

If you want to start a fight in many parts of the country, simply ask which option they prefer between hand-tossed vs. pan pizza.

Whether you like Chicago-style versus New Your-style or Detroit versus Neapolitan, there are many variations on the two types of pizza to fit anyone's tastes. These days, pizza is an American institution.

Modern pizza started off as a cheap and filling meal for the poverty-stricken laborers of Naples, Italy in the eighteenth century. By the early twentieth century, Neapolitan workers had moved to major cities in America and brought pizza with them. After World War II, the food had changed so much that it was almost its own thing when it made it back around to Naples.

So, while not quite a friendship ender, the question of hand-tossed vs. pan pizzas is hotly debated. What is hand-tossed pizza, and what is pan pizza? Read on to learn what they are and how they're made!

The Dough

The dough for both pizza types is made the same way. The only real difference here is the softness of the dough. For hand-tossed pizza, the dough is thinner and softer. This enables you to easily toss and shape the dough before baking.

With pan pizza, the dough should be stiffer and thicker. There's not a lot of room for the dough to expand in the pan, so you'll have a fluffier crust. Pan pizza dough won't rise the same way as hand-tossed pizza dough does, so it has a spongier texture.

The Prep

When you prep hand-tossed pizza, you knead the dough until it is at the right softness, then toss it in the air until you find a good shape. Once that's done, drop some toppings on there and slide it into the oven. Just don't accidentally fold it over, because then you'll have a calzone, not a pizza.

When prepping a pan pizza, there's less to worry about. You oil up the dough and pan, then shape the dough into a ball. Then you press the dough into the pan, add the toppings, and bake!

The Crust and Toppings

Since the crust is thinner on a hand-tossed pizza, you can't put as many toppings on it. There's only a thin layer of cheese and one or two other toppings. The crust won't look as greasy as a pan pizza, either.

The pan pizza's crust is thick and golden brown from the oil. It can handle a heavy load of toppings that usually includes a thick three-cheese blend. Many places pile the toppings on, making it look like an actual pie!

Hand-Tossed vs. Pan Pizza: Everyone Wins

Hand-tossed vs. pan pizza is a debate where everyone wins. If you enjoy a less greasy pie, get hand-tossed pizza. If you enjoy heavy toppings, then go with pan pizza!

Enjoy this article? Then don't forget to check out DeNicola's Authentic Italian Restaurant blog for more delicious articles!