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A Neopolitan pizza
Spacca Napoli
Spacca Napoli

Where to Find Thin-Crust Pizza in Chicago

Yes, Chicagoans love their tavern-style squares, but they’re also capable of embracing triangles

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Spacca Napoli
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For those fatigued by the endless debates over deep dish versus tavern style, it’s okay to opt out. Chicago’s pizza scene is more vibrant than ever, with an abundance of thin-crust options that did not originate in the Windy City. Civic pride aside, there’s nothing wrong with having a New York slice every once in a while — they’re pretty good! Or try Neapolitan, the original pizza, or Roman, or New Haven, or even Quad Cities- or Pilsen-style, though the latter is limited to one single pizzeria that started on 21st Street. They all come in wedges, which eliminates the debate over which part of tavern-style is best, the corners or the center. An argument avoided is almost as good as an argument won.

As of January 3, the city has mandated that those ages 5 and up be fully vaccinated and masked at public places indoors while not actively eating or drinking. For updated information on coronavirus cases, please visit the city of Chicago’s COVID-19 dashboard. Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; it may pose a risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial COVID transmission. The latest CDC guidance is here; find a COVID-19 vaccination site here.

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Jimmy's Pizza Cafe

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Jimmy’s Pizza Cafe is one the most popular pizzerias in the city. The spot has many of the trappings of a New York-style pizzeria, with a display case of sliced pies ready to be popped in the oven for carryout. Whole pies are available, but affordable slices to go are what makes Jimmy’s special. Many regard Jimmy’s as the most authentic New York slice in town. Jimmy’s is temporarily closed while it moves to its new location at 2434 W. Montrose Avenue in Ravenswood; it will reopen in mid-February.

Munno Pizzeria & Bistro

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A new addition to the Michelin Bin Gourmand list, this Ravenswood neighborhood spot serves Neapolitan-style thin-crust pies with nicely charred and blistered crusts. There’s also handmade pasta, and bombolini for dessert.

Spacca Napoli Pizzeria

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For about a decade, the Ravenswood neighborhood has been lucky to have a true Neapolitan pizza joint that will transport you to Naples with each wood-fired pie. Ingredients are sourced and imported from Italy, and the oven itself is built by Neapolitan artisans.

Forno Rosso

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With locations in both Dunning and the West Loop neighborhoods, you don’t have to trek the city to find authentic Neopolitan-style pizza. Crusts made from Italian-milled flour are topped with classic ingredients for a real taste of Italy. All pizzas are also available gluten-free.

Pizzeria Serio

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This Lakeview spot serves East Coast-style pizza with a Neapolitan twist and a rotating assortment of beers on tap. In addition to the delicious wood-fired pizza, Pizzeria Serio also serves some of the best calzones in the city. Check out the char-crusted goodness.

Pisolino Italian Market

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This darling Avondale Italian restaurant morphed to more of a to-go and market operation during the pandemic. James De Marte’s round pies a unique — they’re crispy with gourmet topics that lend well to carryout without being too doughy. The pies successfully combine classic Italian ingredients with Chicago sensibility (yes, there’s fennel sausage).

Paulie Gee's

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This New York import offers all sorts of creative toppings blazed up in a Neapolitan-style oven. The menu offers a variety of vegan and gluten-free styles, which makes it a great place to dine for people with dietary restrictions. A second location in Wicker Park focuses on N.Y.-style slices, while the third and latest Chicago location at Loyola University in Rogers Park serves Detroit-style pan pies.

A close-up shot of a New York-style pizza
Paulie Gee’s now features New York-style pies in Wicker Park.
Garrett Sweet/Eater Chicago

The Boiler Room

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Logan Square’s Boiler Room has an adventurous menu, where, among other options, diners will find the Thai serrano, topped with Thai cream-cheese, pulled chicken, and a sweet chili sauce. For those looking for a bit more mundane experience, the classics are executed efficiently with a crisp crust and sausage crumbles (this isn’t Chicago-style sausage). Pizza is also available by the slice.

Gallucci Pizzeria Napoletana

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This Old Town space has long served great pizza: the previous tenant, Dinotto’s, made a name for itself for years in the neighborhood. Since Dinotto’s closed in 2019, Gianni Gallucci has picked up the torch. He’s a fixture on the competitive pizza circuit and has a strong adherence to classic Neapolitan pizza. The Terra Mia is a popular choice, while truffle lovers shouldn’t pass on the Tartufata, a white pie with black truffle cream.

Piece is a Wicker Park standby and an award-winning brewery. Co-owned by Rick Nielsen of Cheap Trick fame, it specializes in New Haven-style pizza with a dough recipe taken from the legendary Sally’s Apizza. The cheese-free tomato pie is a standout, but don’t forget to try the spicy pizza made with Hot Doug’s Atomic Sausage.

Craft Pizza

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Craft Pizza defies characterization. It’s a hodgepodge of Midwestern and Neapolitan, and the headliner is a margherita that which features whole-milk mozzarella. There are also slices to be had and customers can pick genuine Chicago-style sausage from Anichini Brothers.

Roots Handmade Pizza

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This is how pizza is done in the Quad Cities: with a malted crust, baked crispy and then cut with a large pair of kitchen shears into shareable strips. For the most authentic experience, order the taco pizza, covered with crushed Doritos. There are locations in Printer’s Row, Lincoln Square, West Town, and Old Town.

A whole pizza
Quad Cities pies come in strips rather than slices.
Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

With locations in Lincoln Park and River North, Moti Cafe has shifted it’s operations from an Indian-style snack shop, to thin-crust pies featuring toppings including smashed samosas, chicken tikka, and vada pav. The pizza is kind of a hybrid of pan and tavern (the pie is square cut). This isn’t glorified naan with toppings: This is real-deal pizza with a subcontinental twist.

Coalfire

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In West Town, you can get coal-forged thin-crust pizza that emerges from the 800-degree oven perfectly charred and bubbly. Why have it any other way? You can choose from 12 specialty pizzas or build your own and create your own new favorite. Check out the Lakeview location as well.

Robert's Pizza and Dough Company

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Robert’s boasts that it serves triangles, not squares, a nod to founder Robert Garvey’s New York roots. Regional shade aside, Robert’s specializes in a fermented dough that bakes up to an airy crust that’s both crisp and bread-like. Toppings range from the traditional — pepperoni, sausage — to the gourmet — duck prosciutto.

Bonci Pizzeria

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Forget the debate over triangles and squares: try pizza by the inch, which is how it’s served at Bonci, a Roman import that opened its first U.S. location in the West Loop. Customers choose their pizza from an ever-changing lineup and tell employees how much they want. This system gives patrons a chance to try everything. Bonci is also available in Lincoln Park at the food court inside Dom’s Kitchen & Market.

Bob’s Pizza

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Bob’s (not to be confused with Robert’s) boasts that it’s the only institution in Chicago that serves “Pilsen-style” pizza. This means pies with foldable slices that are still somehow crispy when you bite into them. Choose from seven speciality pizzas or design your own. There are also locations in Old Town and Evanston (and in the West Loop, though it’s temporarily closed).

Stix n Brix Wood Fired Pizza

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A short distance from Sox Park, Stix n Brix focuses on wood-fired Neapolitan-style pies. Dig into a South Side-inspired specialty: the beef n giardiniera pie, topped with sliced Italian beef and hot peppers.

Marz Community Brewing Company

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Buoyed by the success in Bridgeport, the team from Pizza Fried Chicken Ice Cream have taken over food operations inside Marz’s McKinley Park brewpub. The collective from Eat Free Pizza are making a variety of special 18-inch Neapolitan pies. Look for cool collabs (they’ve teamed up with Chinatown’s Triple Crown Restaurant to celebrate the Lunar New Year). But as the minds of E.F. Pizza tend to wander, expect them to change pizza styles up from time to time.

Nella Pizza e Pasta

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Nella Grassano, the chef behind Nella Pizza e Pasta, grew up in Naples and worked at lauded North Side pizzeria Spacca Napoli before opening her own spot, which subsequently earned a spot on the Michelin Bib Gourmand list. Her pies offer a wondrous chew and char. The menu is fairly traditional; the ortolana (mozzarella, eggplant, zucchini, bell peppers, mushrooms, red sauce, basil) is a standout. There are also Neapolitan breakfast pizzas.

Open Outcry Brewing Company

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In Morgan Park, Open Outcry is a family-friendly brewpub with a few outdoor seating options. The kitchen has a wood-fire oven where the Neapolitan-inspired thin crusts are baked. These are unconventional pies, with selections like a mac & cheese with smoked gouda sauce. The Chi Town comes with braised beef, fries, and giardiniera. 

Jimmy's Pizza Cafe

Jimmy’s Pizza Cafe is one the most popular pizzerias in the city. The spot has many of the trappings of a New York-style pizzeria, with a display case of sliced pies ready to be popped in the oven for carryout. Whole pies are available, but affordable slices to go are what makes Jimmy’s special. Many regard Jimmy’s as the most authentic New York slice in town. Jimmy’s is temporarily closed while it moves to its new location at 2434 W. Montrose Avenue in Ravenswood; it will reopen in mid-February.

Munno Pizzeria & Bistro

A new addition to the Michelin Bin Gourmand list, this Ravenswood neighborhood spot serves Neapolitan-style thin-crust pies with nicely charred and blistered crusts. There’s also handmade pasta, and bombolini for dessert.

Spacca Napoli Pizzeria

For about a decade, the Ravenswood neighborhood has been lucky to have a true Neapolitan pizza joint that will transport you to Naples with each wood-fired pie. Ingredients are sourced and imported from Italy, and the oven itself is built by Neapolitan artisans.

Forno Rosso

With locations in both Dunning and the West Loop neighborhoods, you don’t have to trek the city to find authentic Neopolitan-style pizza. Crusts made from Italian-milled flour are topped with classic ingredients for a real taste of Italy. All pizzas are also available gluten-free.

Pizzeria Serio

This Lakeview spot serves East Coast-style pizza with a Neapolitan twist and a rotating assortment of beers on tap. In addition to the delicious wood-fired pizza, Pizzeria Serio also serves some of the best calzones in the city. Check out the char-crusted goodness.

Pisolino Italian Market

This darling Avondale Italian restaurant morphed to more of a to-go and market operation during the pandemic. James De Marte’s round pies a unique — they’re crispy with gourmet topics that lend well to carryout without being too doughy. The pies successfully combine classic Italian ingredients with Chicago sensibility (yes, there’s fennel sausage).

Paulie Gee's

This New York import offers all sorts of creative toppings blazed up in a Neapolitan-style oven. The menu offers a variety of vegan and gluten-free styles, which makes it a great place to dine for people with dietary restrictions. A second location in Wicker Park focuses on N.Y.-style slices, while the third and latest Chicago location at Loyola University in Rogers Park serves Detroit-style pan pies.

A close-up shot of a New York-style pizza
Paulie Gee’s now features New York-style pies in Wicker Park.
Garrett Sweet/Eater Chicago

The Boiler Room

Logan Square’s Boiler Room has an adventurous menu, where, among other options, diners will find the Thai serrano, topped with Thai cream-cheese, pulled chicken, and a sweet chili sauce. For those looking for a bit more mundane experience, the classics are executed efficiently with a crisp crust and sausage crumbles (this isn’t Chicago-style sausage). Pizza is also available by the slice.

Gallucci Pizzeria Napoletana

This Old Town space has long served great pizza: the previous tenant, Dinotto’s, made a name for itself for years in the neighborhood. Since Dinotto’s closed in 2019, Gianni Gallucci has picked up the torch. He’s a fixture on the competitive pizza circuit and has a strong adherence to classic Neapolitan pizza. The Terra Mia is a popular choice, while truffle lovers shouldn’t pass on the Tartufata, a white pie with black truffle cream.

Piece

Piece is a Wicker Park standby and an award-winning brewery. Co-owned by Rick Nielsen of Cheap Trick fame, it specializes in New Haven-style pizza with a dough recipe taken from the legendary Sally’s Apizza. The cheese-free tomato pie is a standout, but don’t forget to try the spicy pizza made with Hot Doug’s Atomic Sausage.

Craft Pizza

Craft Pizza defies characterization. It’s a hodgepodge of Midwestern and Neapolitan, and the headliner is a margherita that which features whole-milk mozzarella. There are also slices to be had and customers can pick genuine Chicago-style sausage from Anichini Brothers.

Roots Handmade Pizza

This is how pizza is done in the Quad Cities: with a malted crust, baked crispy and then cut with a large pair of kitchen shears into shareable strips. For the most authentic experience, order the taco pizza, covered with crushed Doritos. There are locations in Printer’s Row, Lincoln Square, West Town, and Old Town.

A whole pizza
Quad Cities pies come in strips rather than slices.
Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

Moti

With locations in Lincoln Park and River North, Moti Cafe has shifted it’s operations from an Indian-style snack shop, to thin-crust pies featuring toppings including smashed samosas, chicken tikka, and vada pav. The pizza is kind of a hybrid of pan and tavern (the pie is square cut). This isn’t glorified naan with toppings: This is real-deal pizza with a subcontinental twist.

Coalfire

In West Town, you can get coal-forged thin-crust pizza that emerges from the 800-degree oven perfectly charred and bubbly. Why have it any other way? You can choose from 12 specialty pizzas or build your own and create your own new favorite. Check out the Lakeview location as well.

Robert's Pizza and Dough Company

Robert’s boasts that it serves triangles, not squares, a nod to founder Robert Garvey’s New York roots. Regional shade aside, Robert’s specializes in a fermented dough that bakes up to an airy crust that’s both crisp and bread-like. Toppings range from the traditional — pepperoni, sausage — to the gourmet — duck prosciutto.

Related Maps

Bonci Pizzeria

Forget the debate over triangles and squares: try pizza by the inch, which is how it’s served at Bonci, a Roman import that opened its first U.S. location in the West Loop. Customers choose their pizza from an ever-changing lineup and tell employees how much they want. This system gives patrons a chance to try everything. Bonci is also available in Lincoln Park at the food court inside Dom’s Kitchen & Market.

Bob’s Pizza

Bob’s (not to be confused with Robert’s) boasts that it’s the only institution in Chicago that serves “Pilsen-style” pizza. This means pies with foldable slices that are still somehow crispy when you bite into them. Choose from seven speciality pizzas or design your own. There are also locations in Old Town and Evanston (and in the West Loop, though it’s temporarily closed).

Stix n Brix Wood Fired Pizza

A short distance from Sox Park, Stix n Brix focuses on wood-fired Neapolitan-style pies. Dig into a South Side-inspired specialty: the beef n giardiniera pie, topped with sliced Italian beef and hot peppers.

Marz Community Brewing Company

Buoyed by the success in Bridgeport, the team from Pizza Fried Chicken Ice Cream have taken over food operations inside Marz’s McKinley Park brewpub. The collective from Eat Free Pizza are making a variety of special 18-inch Neapolitan pies. Look for cool collabs (they’ve teamed up with Chinatown’s Triple Crown Restaurant to celebrate the Lunar New Year). But as the minds of E.F. Pizza tend to wander, expect them to change pizza styles up from time to time.

Nella Pizza e Pasta

Nella Grassano, the chef behind Nella Pizza e Pasta, grew up in Naples and worked at lauded North Side pizzeria Spacca Napoli before opening her own spot, which subsequently earned a spot on the Michelin Bib Gourmand list. Her pies offer a wondrous chew and char. The menu is fairly traditional; the ortolana (mozzarella, eggplant, zucchini, bell peppers, mushrooms, red sauce, basil) is a standout. There are also Neapolitan breakfast pizzas.

Open Outcry Brewing Company

In Morgan Park, Open Outcry is a family-friendly brewpub with a few outdoor seating options. The kitchen has a wood-fire oven where the Neapolitan-inspired thin crusts are baked. These are unconventional pies, with selections like a mac & cheese with smoked gouda sauce. The Chi Town comes with braised beef, fries, and giardiniera. 

Related Maps