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New York Style Grandma Pizza With Pepperoni in Your Home Oven

Charles loves to cook and enjoys trying new recipes every day. He specializes in recreating gourmet comfort food.

Grandma pizza pie before baking

Grandma pizza pie before baking

I don't have fancy restaurant-style baking pans. My oven is a 20-year-old gas stove without all the fancy digital controls. I enjoy good pizza and I don't always want to order out and have one delivered. No matter how good a restaurant pizza is when it comes out of the oven, that cardboard delivery box tends to lend its flavor to whatever is inside. Blah!

Try this straightforward, thin-crusted sheet pan pizza that is inspired by my grandma and other Italian grandmas across the country. A thinner version of a Sicilian pizza that grandma used to make for an authentic New York pizza joint experience, fresh out of your own oven.

What Is Grandma Pizza?

According to allrecipes, "Grandma pizza is a Sicilian-style pie that originated in New York. It has a thinner, crispy crust than its Sicilian cousin and it's cooked in a rectangular pan coated with plenty of olive oil for an almost fried taste. Since it was created by home cooks in Long Island, grandma pizza is traditionally made without a pizza oven." Popularized by Umberto Corteo in the early 1990s, the grandma pizza sets itself apart with an upside-down approach to toppings. Cheese first then a chunkier home-style sauce on top make the grandma pizza unique in its own delicious way.

Cook Time

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

24 hours

18 min

24 hours 18 min

4 to 6 servings


For the dough:

  • 3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon instant yeast
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 9 ounces lukewarm water
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
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For the sauce:

  • 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

For the topping:

  • Drizzle extra virgin olive oil
  • Dried oregano, to taste
  • Pecorino or Parmesan cheese, to taste
  • 5 ounce package favorite pepperoni
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
My favorite grandma pie recipe

My favorite grandma pie recipe


  1. Make the dough: In a large bowl, add the water, salt, sugar, flour, olive oil, and yeast. Mix together to form a rough dough. Turn out the dough to a clean work surface.
  2. Knead the dough for at least 5 minutes. If the dough sticks to your hands, cover the dough and wait 30 minutes for the dough to hydrate and relax. You must knead the dough for at least 5 minutes.
  3. Once kneaded, allow the dough to rest for at least 30 minutes and up to 1 hour. After resting, shape the dough into a ball, place it in an oiled container, and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight or up to 3 days. The longer the dough is allowed to cold ferment in the refrigerator the better the results.
  4. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and allow it to reach room temperature (somewhere between 70 and 74 degrees Fahrenheit). Oil a 12" x 16" baking sheet with 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil. This is necessary to achieve the traditional crispy, fried crust.
  5. Place the room temperature dough onto the oiled sheet pan. Lightly press the dough evenly into the pan, making sure to press into the corners. You will probably need to do this in more than one try. Cover and allow the dough to rest for 30-45 minutes and press the dough into the corners to ensure the pan is completely filled with the dough. Cover with plastic wrap and preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Set dough aside while you prepare the sauce and toppings.
  6. Make the sauce: In a bowl, combine the crushed tomatoes, olive oil, salt, pepper, sugar, garlic, oregano, and basil. Mix together and set aside.
  7. Uncover the dough and press into the corners if needed. Spread the mozzarella evenly over the dough. Drop the sauce in spoonfuls over the top of the cheese, sprinkle with oregano, Parmesan or Pecorino cheese, and finish by topping with pepperoni and a drizzle of olive oil.
  8. Place pizza in the preheated 450-degree oven on the rack of the lower third section. Bake for 9 minutes before rotating the pizza 180 degrees. Bake for another 9 minutes, checking periodically for a golden-brown crust by lifting and peeking under the pizza. After 8 minutes if the bottom of the pizza is to your liking, remove to a cooling rack and rest for at least 5 minutes before serving. Enjoy.
Grandma pie with pepperoni

Grandma pie with pepperoni

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2021 Charles Kikas

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