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The Best Vegan Detroit-Style Pizza – You’ve most likely heard of Chicago-style, otherwise known as Neapolitan pizza. But, odds are you’ve never heard of Detroit-style pizza, and believe me when I say it’s worth testing.
The dough is tender-yet-chewy and very crunchy, with sauce and melty vegan cheese on top. This vegan Detroit-style pizza is simple to make and ideal for beginners. In addition, it’s a no-knead pizza, so no extra equipment is required; truly, how awesome is that?
Although Pizza Hut has released a vegetarian version of Detroit-Style Pizza, the Vegan version is still unavailable. No worries, I’ve got you covered.
I love pizza and I love carbs, so be sure to check this amazing Vegan Lasagna Recipe!
What exactly is a Detroit-style pizza?
When you picture pizza, you immediately think of perfectly round slices. Detroit-style pizza, on the other hand, is considerably different and even easier to create. Here’s what goes into making a Detroit-style pizza:
- Thick, tender-yet-chewy crust with a highly crisp exterior. Almost like focaccia!
- Rectangular form. They are often baked in a rectangular pan.
- First, the cheese, then the tomato sauce. In between the sauce and the dough, the cheese functions as a buffer.
- A hybrid of a Chicago-style pizza and a Sicilian pizza.
What you’ll need to prepare a vegan-Detroit-style pizza is as follows:
- A large bowl and your hands – You will, indeed, make this dough with your hands. But, don’t worry, it’s simple! This is an excellent exercise for learning how to knead the dough.
- 913-inch sheet pan – This will result in a thick crust and its distinctive form.
- Bread Flour – The protein content of bread flour is optimal for gluten formation. A high protein concentration allows it to soak more moisture and retain its form better.
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil — Not only does it provide taste to the dough, but you’ll need a lot of it to oil the pan, which will help you produce a crispy bottom.
- Toppings – Beyond sausage, Vegan pepperoni, fresh mushrooms, or anything you like. My favorite for Vegan Detroit-Style pizza is Vegan Pepperoni.
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List of Ingredients
- 1 ½ teaspoon – kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons – of active dry yeast See notes
- 30g (2 tablespoons) – extra virgin olive oil, and more for greasing
- 325g (1 ⅓ cups) – lukewarm water
- 430g (3 ½ cups) – bread flour, leveled and sieved
- Vegan Mozzarella, preferably the “Miyoko’s Brand“
- Vegan Marinara or Pizza sauce
- Your favorite toppings (Beyond sausage, Vegan pepperoni, fresh mushrooms)
- Damp cloth
- Large mixing bowl
- Medium mixing bowl
- 9×13 deep sheet pan
Making the dough:
- In a small basin, whisk warm water and active dry yeast together. Leave it to sit for 10 minutes to bloom after stirring to activate the yeast. It should get foamy and smell strongly like yeast.
- Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl, mix the bread flour and kosher salt.
- And once the yeast is ready, combine it with the extra virgin olive oil in a mixing dish.
- With your hands, combine the materials until no dry flour is left in the bowl and a homogeneous mass develops. With a towel or plastic wrap, cover the bowl for 20 minutes to allow it to rest. See also the notes.
- Once 20 minutes have passed, lubricate your hands with olive oil. Grab an edge of the dough ball in the bowl and extend and fold it. Lift it vertically to lengthen the dough as far as it will go without ripping, then fold it over to the other side. Turn the dish and perform 3 more stretches and folds before covering and resting for 30 minutes. Perform this twice more, with a 30-minute break in between. In all, you’ll do three sets of stretches and folds.
Proofing and shaping:
- Grease a 913-inch baking pan with olive oil until it is completely coated. This will need to be well oiled so that the dough does not adhere to it.
- After the last stretch and fold, flip the dough over onto itself so that it is upside down, and place it on an oiled sheet pan.
- Next, using greased hands, carefully stretch the dough to the corners of the pan. If the dough springs back, cover and set aside for 10-15 minutes to enable the gluten to settle before carefully pushing it back to the corners.
- Rub some oil on the plastic wrap and wrap it around the dough. This will prevent the plastic from sticking to the dough. Proof the dough mixture for a further half an hour to 45 minutes.
- In the meantime, reposition the oven racks. Put one wire rack on the bottom and one on top. Then, set the oven to 450° F.
Prepare your toppings:
- Cook the vegan meat alternatives before incorporating them into the dough. I find that cooking it first, instead of depending on the oven, yields superior results.
- When the dough is finished, start by sprinkling it with cheese and spreading it all the way to the edge. See also the notes.
- Spoon your pizza or marinara sauce over the cheese, leaving sections of cheese exposed.
- Top with your preferred toppings; I chose fresh mushrooms and crumbled Beyond sausage.
Bake Vegan Detroit-Style Pizza!
- Bake the pizza for 20 minutes on the bottom rack. This will result in a crispy bottom.
- Then, move it to the top rack and bake for an additional 5 minutes. This allows the toppings to cook and the cheese to melt. Keep a close watch on it in the event that the toppings brown.
- Remove from the oven and set aside for 10 minutes to cool. Add all of the other leafy green toppings, such as arugula or basil, at this point. Serve and have fun!
*After each round of stretching and folding, the dough will begin to stiffen, indicating the production of gluten. And you’ll find that the dough is smoother after the third round of stretch and folds than when you originally started.
* You may attempt a cold fermentation by putting the dough in the fridge for 12-16 hours to proof. This will give the dough additional taste. Next, leave it to sit at room temp for 30 minutes to an hour before proceeding to the next phase. Now is the cue to set the oven to 450°F.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this Vegan Detroit-Style Pizza as much as I have created the recipe. Please let me know down in the comments if you have any suggestions or questions for this recipe.