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Paulie Gee’s Wicker Park is rolling.
Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

The 10 Hottest Pizzas to Try in Chicago Right Now

Chicago’s pizza scene keeps getting better

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Paulie Gee’s Wicker Park is rolling.
| Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

Regardless of weather, pizza is always a good decision in Chicago. The city has a deep bench of choices beyond deep dish and tavern style, and over the last year the city’s pizza scene has exploded.

The following is a listing of the city’s newer entries. The city's most iconic places are reliable standbys but these following 10 pizzerias have recently opened — or reopened — and are elevating the scene with fantastic textures, fresh ingredients, and creative toppings.

As of June 11, Chicago restaurants have fully reopened and the city has lifted restrictions on capacity and social distancing. However, on July 30, the city issued guidance recommending that everyone wear facial coverings while indoors. For updated information on coronavirus cases, please visit the city of Chicago’s COVID-19 dashboard. Studies indicate that there is a lower exposure risk when outdoors, but the level of risk involved with patio dining is contingent on restaurants following safety guidelines. The latest CDC guidance for vaccinated diners during the COVID-19 outbreak is available here; dining out still carries risks for unvaccinated diners and workers. Find a local vaccination site here.

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George's Deep Dish

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George’s Deep Dish has been a revelation for Chicagoans tired of the same old pizza. There’s top-notch topping combos, such as the Carlin’s Layover with jalapeño, pineapple, and pepperoni. But the secret is the ferment in the dough that gives the crust a puff reminiscent of a Greek pastry. This is destination-worthy pizza and will make deep-dish doubters shut up while they’re enjoying these wonderful slices of life.

Naudi Signature Pizza

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This tiny Neapolitan pizzeria is found inside a tiny space where Lincoln Park and Lakeview meet. This is BYO, no-frills spot that doesn’t have much of an online presence, but that shouldn’t stop pizza fans from stopping by.

Max and Issy's Pizzeria

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Paddy Long’s was a venerable neighborhood bar that pushed an agenda of beer and bacon. Lincoln Park and Lakeview enjoyed that agenda, but during the pandemic the owners wanted more carryout business, so they shifted gears to New York-style pizza. The bar’s loyal fans can still order a pie with jowl bacon, but there’s also a variety of classics that round out the menu.

Paulie Gee's Wicker Park

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Just like its Brooklyn namesake, Paulie Gee’s Chicago has opened up a slice shop focusing in N.Y.-style pizza. It’s tempting to canvas the display case while walking down Damen on Wicker Park’s six corner intersection. The shop does a great job a pristine productions of classic pies. 

A pizza counter with pizzas.
Paulie Gee’s counter
Garrett Sweet/Eater Chicago

Moti Cafe

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With a trio of suburban locations going under the Masala Pizza name, and the flagship in River North, Moti has been reborn as a thin-crust pizzeria using chicken tikka, paneer, and samosas. These are all flavors of the Indian subcontinent. The sauce is like cilantro/lime chutney and perfect for those who want something different.

Crushed By Giants Brewing Company

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The pandemic was tough for the owners of Crushed By Giants as they opened their new brewpub with a menu of tacos inside its downtown home. They shifted operations to create a new style of pizza, one that’s crunchier than ownership’s Lakeview pizzeria, Roebuck, where they specialize in New Neapolitan pies. Give this new style a shot.

Tree House

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From the owners of Chicago bars like John Barleycorn’s and Moe’s Cantina, Tree House is a surprise in River North with Motor City worthy Detroit-style squares that will make the most annoying Mitten transplant less annoying. Don’t tell them, but between Tree House and Paulie Gee’s, there’s really no missing Detroit when it comes to pizza in Chicago.

Candlelite (Time Out Market Chicago)

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This Rogers Park icon has found itself into Time Out Market food hall, as the market wanting a tavern-style pizza slinger. Candlelite at Time Out sells 12- and 16-inch pies. Customers can build their own with sausage or pepperoni, or opt for Buffalo chicken, barbecue chicken, or white configurations.

Paper Thin Pizza (Soho House Chicago)

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Paper Thin Pizza has found a home inside the Soho House with a style vaguely reminiscent of tavern style to the untrained eye. But this pizza’s thinner and cut into triangles. The Hot Oil Stinger, made with Wisconsin brick cheese, roasted jalapeños, and hot oil is a show stopper.

Soul Veg City

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The former Soul Vegetarian has rebranded inside its renovated space along 75th Street. They added items to the menu including a new vegan pizza menu that uses Daiya cheese and Soul V’s own homemade blend. This is a solid option for those who want a lighter option, vegans, and those with digestive issues.

George's Deep Dish

George’s Deep Dish has been a revelation for Chicagoans tired of the same old pizza. There’s top-notch topping combos, such as the Carlin’s Layover with jalapeño, pineapple, and pepperoni. But the secret is the ferment in the dough that gives the crust a puff reminiscent of a Greek pastry. This is destination-worthy pizza and will make deep-dish doubters shut up while they’re enjoying these wonderful slices of life.

Naudi Signature Pizza

This tiny Neapolitan pizzeria is found inside a tiny space where Lincoln Park and Lakeview meet. This is BYO, no-frills spot that doesn’t have much of an online presence, but that shouldn’t stop pizza fans from stopping by.

Max and Issy's Pizzeria

Paddy Long’s was a venerable neighborhood bar that pushed an agenda of beer and bacon. Lincoln Park and Lakeview enjoyed that agenda, but during the pandemic the owners wanted more carryout business, so they shifted gears to New York-style pizza. The bar’s loyal fans can still order a pie with jowl bacon, but there’s also a variety of classics that round out the menu.

Paulie Gee's Wicker Park

Just like its Brooklyn namesake, Paulie Gee’s Chicago has opened up a slice shop focusing in N.Y.-style pizza. It’s tempting to canvas the display case while walking down Damen on Wicker Park’s six corner intersection. The shop does a great job a pristine productions of classic pies. 

A pizza counter with pizzas.
Paulie Gee’s counter
Garrett Sweet/Eater Chicago

Moti Cafe

With a trio of suburban locations going under the Masala Pizza name, and the flagship in River North, Moti has been reborn as a thin-crust pizzeria using chicken tikka, paneer, and samosas. These are all flavors of the Indian subcontinent. The sauce is like cilantro/lime chutney and perfect for those who want something different.

Crushed By Giants Brewing Company

The pandemic was tough for the owners of Crushed By Giants as they opened their new brewpub with a menu of tacos inside its downtown home. They shifted operations to create a new style of pizza, one that’s crunchier than ownership’s Lakeview pizzeria, Roebuck, where they specialize in New Neapolitan pies. Give this new style a shot.

Tree House

From the owners of Chicago bars like John Barleycorn’s and Moe’s Cantina, Tree House is a surprise in River North with Motor City worthy Detroit-style squares that will make the most annoying Mitten transplant less annoying. Don’t tell them, but between Tree House and Paulie Gee’s, there’s really no missing Detroit when it comes to pizza in Chicago.

Candlelite (Time Out Market Chicago)

This Rogers Park icon has found itself into Time Out Market food hall, as the market wanting a tavern-style pizza slinger. Candlelite at Time Out sells 12- and 16-inch pies. Customers can build their own with sausage or pepperoni, or opt for Buffalo chicken, barbecue chicken, or white configurations.

Paper Thin Pizza (Soho House Chicago)

Paper Thin Pizza has found a home inside the Soho House with a style vaguely reminiscent of tavern style to the untrained eye. But this pizza’s thinner and cut into triangles. The Hot Oil Stinger, made with Wisconsin brick cheese, roasted jalapeños, and hot oil is a show stopper.

Soul Veg City

The former Soul Vegetarian has rebranded inside its renovated space along 75th Street. They added items to the menu including a new vegan pizza menu that uses Daiya cheese and Soul V’s own homemade blend. This is a solid option for those who want a lighter option, vegans, and those with digestive issues.

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