National Detroit-Style Pizza Day, celebrated every year on June 23, recognizes the square-cut pizza style first served at Buddy’s Pizza. Did you know that Detroit gave us more than square-cut pizza? Yes, Detroit, the birthplace of the American automobile, and Motown is also the city that gave us Madonna, the Mustang, and the first paved road. Today, the cravings, love, and food lust for this unique pizza have spread from coast to coast. So, what is this Detroit-style Pizza, and what makes a pizza Detroit-Style? Learn more about the history, significance, and unique facts about square-cut pizza here.
History of National Detroit Style Pizza Day
For those who don’t know what Detroit-style pizza is, let us take the honor of introducing you to one of the greatest pizza styles ever invented. It all starts with the crust — the deep and thickly composed crust that’s so light and airy in taste. The unique shape and one-of-a-kind flavor of the pizza come from the steel square pans that are borrowed from the auto industry. One of the striking things about Detroit-style pizzas is that the toppings are layered backward. It means that they lay the gourmet pepperoni directly on the hand-stretched dough followed by a layer of Wisconsin Brick Cheese, spread all the way to the edges of the pan. The cheese will caramelize when baked and creates an incredibly crisp crust. All of these are finally topped with racing stripes of tomato sauce at the top.
Detroit-style pizza was reportedly born in 1946 at a Detroit speakeasy-turned-bar-turned-pizza joint called Buddy’s Rendezvous. The mother-in-law of the restaurant’s owner created a square, pan-baked, Sicilian-style pizza that soon became all the rage with hipsters. Since that day there has been no looking back for Detroit-style pizza. In 2011, former Detroit mayor Dave Bing and City Council created a proclamation deeming June 23 to be “Buddy’s Pizza Day” in the city of Detroit. Later in 2021, the day was renamed “National Detroit-Style Pizza Day” to celebrate its 75th anniversary of offering thick crust and square slices.
So, what are you waiting for? Go grab a Detroit-style pizza today and celebrate this day in style along with some substance!
National Detroit Style Pizza Day timeline
A unique square-cut pizza style is served at Buddy’s Pizza.
Mayor Dave Bing proclaims June 23 as Buddy’s Pizza Day.
Detroit-style pizza wins the “World’s Best Pizza” honors at Pizza Expo.
Buddy’s Pizza announces that June 23 would now be known as National Detroit-Style Pizza Day.
National Detroit Style Pizza Day FAQs
Why is it called Detroit-style pizza?
The square-shaped pizza is called Detroit-style pizza because it was invented in Detroit and baked in forged-steel pans borrowed from local automotive plants. This is the secret behind light and crispy crust.
What is the difference between Chicago and Detroit-style pizza?
A Chicago-style slice is built upon a flaky, thin, deep crust similar to a traditional pie. On the other hand, Detroit-style pizza relies on a thick and fluffy crust that feels light and is cheesy inside.
Is Buddy’s pizza only in Michigan?
There are many branches of Buddy’s Pizza across the state and it employs more than 700 employees. But this pizza style has grown beyond Buddy’s into a nationwide phenomenon.
National Detroit Style Pizza Day Activities
Go to Buddy’s Pizza
The best thing you can do to celebrate National Detroit-Style Pizza Day is by experiencing it in its birthplace. You can visit one of the 19 Buddy’s Pizza locations and enjoy it.
Bake it yourself
Looking for some fun way to spend and celebrate the National Detroit-Style Pizza Day? We’ve got you covered. Look online for the recipe and start preparing the pizza yourself. No one to stop you!
Share your story
If you’re someone who has visited Buddy's Pizza or has been trying out Detroit-style pizza for years, share some of your interesting stories that happened while you were tasting the deliciousness.
5 Insane Facts About Detroit-Style Pizza
Pizza and automobile
The pan used to bake Detroit-style pizzas was once used by automobile manufacturers.
It’s all over the U.S.
Authentic Detroit-style pizza is currently served in at least 10 U.S. states.
There’s no butter involved
The buttery flavor of this pizza has nothing to do with butter, it's just oil and cheese!
There’s a pepperoni protocol
It is tradition to add pepperoni directly to the dough before the addition of cheese.
Meet the Italian Cousin
Sicilian sfincione is a pizza style that’s closely related to the Detroit-style pizza.
Why We Love National Detroit Style Pizza Day
Everybody loves pizza
From kids to adults, men to women, vegans to non-vegetarians, everybody loves pizza! It’s more than just bread and cheese, it’s an emotion that’s baked with love, compassion, and care.
It serves a cause
For every pizza that Buddy’s sells on this day, $1 will be donated. This money goes to the Community Housing Network of Metro Detroit, Haven House in mid-Michigan, or Housing Resources Inc in Western Michigan.
It’s a meaningful day for animals too
On this day, Buddy’s Pizza partners with the Detroit Zoo and will provide special pizzas to the facility’s grizzly bears, wolves, and arctic foxes. Fans are also invited to take pictures and ask questions.
National Detroit Style Pizza Day dates