Italian Sausage and Green Bell Pepper Deep Dish Pizza

Italian Sausage and Green Bell Pepper Deep Dish Pizza

Have you been to Chicago and had a deep dish pizza? Did you love it but could only eat one slice? If so this pie is for you. This deep dish pizza recipe is the classic pairing of spicy Italian sausage with delicious organic green bell peppers on a crust that explodes with flavor, but without that overly greasy crust that is typical of Chicago deep dish pizza.

The key to a great pizza with vegetables on it is to slightly cook them before adding them to the pizza, and this pizza is no different. After the Italian sausage has cooked the bell peppers will be added to the sausage and cooked covered on a lower heat just to slightly soften them. This gives the bell peppers a texture that compliments the rest of the pie once cooked, the added bonus it allows the peppers to take on some of the big flavor of the sausage. This pizza is truly homemade eats at its finest.

Tools Used

Ingredients

Yield: 1 Deep Dish Pizza

Pan Size 10″ pan 12″ pan 14″ pan
Deep Dish Dough 10″ dough 12″ dough 14″ dough
Italian Sausage, spicy 250g 375g 500g
Green Bell Pepper 3/4 pepper 1 pepper 1 1/2 peppers
Mozzarella Cheese 250g 375g  500g
Tomato Sauce 15 oz 20 oz  30 oz
Olive Oil a tablespoon for oiling pan
Parmigiano Reggiano a small wedge grated for garnish

Directions

  1. Make deep dish dough as per instructions. Use ingredient quantity column that corresponds with the pan you will be using.
  2. Make tomato sauce as per instructions. The recipe makes approximately 15 ounces of sauce.
  3. Preheat oven to 475°F (246°C).
  4. Cut green pepper into slices.
  5. Remove sausage from casing and cook over medium heat in a small cast iron skillet. Use a wooden spoon to break up the sausage as it cooks.
  6. Once the sausage is fully cooked, about 5 minutes, reduce heat to medium-low and add green bell pepper slices. Cover with lid.
  7. Allow the peppers to cook with the sausage for about 10 more minutes while stirring every few minutes. Keep covered.
  8. Shred cheese using the box grater.
  9. Coat deep dish pan with olive oil.
  10. Form dough into a disc shape by stretching it. Place the deep dish dough in pan and use your palm and fingers to press down on the dough spreading it across the pan. Use your fingers to press the dough up the edge of the pan. (see photos below). Make sure  the corners don’t get too thick.
  11. Use a fork or dough docker and make indentations around the bottom of the dough.
  12. Bake the crust by itself for 5 minutes in oven.
  13. Remove from oven.
  14. Add cheese first.
  15. Add cooked Italian sausage and green bell peppers on top of the cheese.
  16. Add the sauce last. No toppings should be above the sauce as they will burn.
  17. Bake for 25-30 minutes on the middle rack.
  18. Remove and allow to cool in the pan for 5 full minutes before trying to remove.
  19. Add freshly grated parmigiano reggiano on top of the pizza.
  20. Cut on a large cutting board with a chef’s knife. Remember: If you cut the pizza right out of the oven the cheese and sauce will slide off the crust and will be messy.

In The Making Photos

cooking-italian-sausage

Remove the sausage casing and discard before cooking and as it cooks break it up with a wooden spoon. For this recipe I am using the spicy Italian sausage from Whole Foods Market, two links for a 10″ pizza. When buying sausage try to avoid the big brands as they are usually made with a lower quality of pork and will often have a somewhat grainy texture to them.

cooking-green-peppers-in-italian-sausage

Make sure the sausage is fully cooked before adding the peppers. Cook over low heat covered to keep in moisture.

forming-deep-dish-pizza-crust

deep-dish-pizza-sausage-green-peppers-toppings

The crust in this photo is after it has baked for five minutes. This ensures the dough doesn’t turn soggy from the cheese and toppings.

topping-deep-dish-pizza-green-peppers-sausage

Keep in mind that the cheese will be thinner when it melts than it is in the pan. When adding the sauce to the top of a deep dish pizza make sure to cover all the toppings, any toppings left uncovered with sauce will burn in the extended cooking time required for deep dish pizza.

sausage-green-pepper-chicago-deep-dish-pizza

homemade-deep-dish-pizza-sausage-green-pepper

Add the Parmigiano Reggiano cheese to the top after baked and allow the pizza to cool for five minutes before cutting.

 

  • Lisa

    This was great! I used a spicy Italian sausage per your recommendation and the heat was perfect with the green peppers. Loved the texture and consistency of the crust as well- not as heavy and overwhelming as what you get at the famous restaurants.

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