Los Angeles’s robust pizza scene didn’t happen overnight. The city’s steady climb began with traditional red sauce joints opened by Italian immigrants, ultimately making way for the uniquely California creations of the ‘80s like the smoked salmon pizza at Spago and everything on the menu at CPK. More recent trends take the best of Neapolitan traditions and combine them with LA’s culinary sensibilities and pristine produce, though there has also been a recent upswing in the prominence of Detroit-style pies and New York-style slices. Here now are just 19 of the many essential pizzeria spots around Los Angeles.Read More
19 Saucy Pizza Spots to Love Around Los Angeles
Tons of different styles for all different needs
Made In Italy Bistro
There are plenty of solid Italian restaurants in the Conejo Valley, and Made in Italy is among the best. In addition to several pastas, salads, and paninis, there are several options for pizza, including a classic margherita, four cheese pie, prosciutto and arugula, and sausage and mushroom. Just like all of Made in Italy’s pastas, pizza pies can be made gluten-free.
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DTown Pizzeria is a must for people looking for the Detroit pizza experience. Made by a native Michigander, these hefty pies come with the sauce on top, the stretchy cheese, and all the crusty-cornered deliciousness one could want.
Combining taglio-style Roman pizza with California ingredients and topping combinations, Roca comes from California Pizza Kitchen co-founder Rick Rosenfeld. The quick-service Pacific Palisades location uses Italian flour and long-fermented dough for a medium crust, sliced square presentation that gets a quick toast before serving. Traditional al taglio is cut with scissors and then sold by weight, but Roca serves pizza already cut for more even pricing around $5-6 a slice. Combinations include amatriciana, barbecue chicken, sausage with potato, and Thai chicken, with a playful, easy approach that serves the affluent Westside community.
The late Jonathan Gold made some hefty claims about Pizzana, comparing chef Daniele Uditi's neo-Neapolitan pies to the best in the world. Given the restaurant's naturally fermented dough and wood-fired oven, it’d be difficult to argue otherwise. Newbies should absolutely try the creamy cacio e pepe pie, or the diavola, topped with spicy salami and nduja walnut romesco. Both have become Uditi signatures.
La Morra Pizzeria
Though previously a pop-up and small shop on West Third Street from Zach Swemle and Marlee Blogdett, La Morra is now operating out of a shared kitchen in North Hollywood with delivery and takeout service of its terrific blistered, Neapolitan-style pizzas. The long-fermented, hand-pulled pizzas start around $20 for margherita, cheese, sausage, or jalapeño pepperoni, with a bunch of vegan and cheese-only white pies available as well. The North Hollywood spot also serves a variety of chicken wings, salads, and dipping sauces to amplify at-home meals.
Former Bootleg Pizzeria operators Kyle Lambert is a specialist of deeper dish, Detroit-style pizza. These square slices are plush, made with naturally fermented dough that features an ever-so-slight tangy flavor. Lambert and partner Courtney Glowacz landed their pizzeria into a small takeout-only Culver City slot with a rock-and-roll vibe that resembles the first season of the Bear (in terms of fun and camaradie — not its conflict, per se). The results are $30-35 square pies laden with cheese and personality, the kind of dinner that pairs well with a good sports game or movie on the couch. Slices are available during the day from noon to 3 p.m., with pies only from noon until 9 p.m., Wednesday to Sunday.
It’s no secret that the bright, shiny Culver City location lacks the grit that made the original Brooklyn Roberta’s feel punk-rock, but stellar pies do the talking here. Wood-fired, a little chewy, nicely charred pizzas include now-classics like the bee sting (with pepperoni and hot honey) and famous original (with tomato, mozzarella, parmesan, caciocavallo, oregano, and chile). Always-rotating, super-fresh vegetable dishes, well-mixed cocktails, and puffed-up pizza dough masquerading as bread and served with creamy cultured butter make this more than the average pizza joint.
William Joo and wife Jennifer So are bringing excellent wood-fired, Tokyo-style Neapolitan pies to Pico-Robertson at their tiny restaurant, where diners watch Joo fire pies from an intimate wrap-around counter. Korean-born Joo trained at Via Alloro, Providence, Angelini Osteria, Pizzana, and Ronan before opening his own spot, where he pinches the dough to create a more three-dimensional shape and a crust that’s both soft and crunchy. The compact pizza menu includes a stellar fior di latte-topped margherita, a bianca pie with preserved lemon and basil, and the cheese-free napoletana with tomato, anchovy, olive, garlic, capers, oregano, extra virgin olive oil.
Prime Pizza has become LA’s de facto slice joint. The place not only does simple thin round pies, it also works square and Sicilian-style pizzas daily, and with locations now open from Burbank to Little Tokyo to Santa Monica, its reach is bigger than ever.
Sotto veteran Daniel Cutler oversees this pizza and small plates restaurant with wife and general manager Caitlin Cutler. With inventive pizzas boasting supple but charred crusts and levain bread with a wonderfully brown crust, Ronan is a haven for those who love carbohydrates.
It’s hard to think of a more photogenic pizza than the square Detroit-style pies from the unassuming Apollonia’s on Wilshire (just check out those high-edged, lacy corners). These dense, expertly cheesy pizzas are filled with crunch, cheese, and plenty of sauce, to be sure, but the place’s crispy, thin, round pies are also worthy of a swoon or two.
L’Antica Pizzeria da Michele
The famous Eat, Pray, Love pizza is a staple in Los Angeles, thanks in part to a charming Hollywood patio and these Neapolitan pies, which arrive big, blistery, soft, and ready for fast consumption.
This sports bar-meets-Indian-pizza-parlor has quickly built a following for its 12- and 16-inch pies. Choose a base sauce from makhini (made with tomatoes, spices, and cream), a nontraditional peri peri vindaloo (made with a roux and Kashmiri red chiles, and fortified with a rich vegetable stock), or white korma (sweet onions, yogurt, and spices). Toppings include homemade Goan sausage, roasted fresnos, and chicken tikka, making this a choose-your-own flavor adventure.
This New Haven-style specialist is hiding inside an underground sports bar in Glendale. It’s hardly the kind of well-known place to find some of LA’s best pizza, but that’s okay — those in the know DM early for orders of darkly burnished, thin, delicious pies.
Quarter Sheets Pizza
What started as a pandemic pop-up run out of their Glendale home has turned into a brick-and-mortar pizza-and-cake restaurant in Echo Park for Aaron Lindell and Hannah Ziskin (House of Gluten). He makes the Detroit-style pizzas, baked in traditional pans for charred, crispy-crunchy edges and a tender, focaccia-like crumb. Although his pies are just as good with a simple topping of tomato with a few sprigs of basil, rotating specials often combine sweet, spicy, and meaty elements to perfection. Ziskin, meanwhile, makes some of the best desserts in town, which include layered slab cakes, princess cakes, and thick slices of mud pie.
Danny Boy's Famous Original Pizza
Danny Boy’s comes from one of NYC’s former Meatball Shop co-founders and is an homage to East Coast red-sauce roots. It’s tucked away inside of an office building doing takeout and on-site dining from a tall, sunny ground floor atrium space.
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Pizzeria Bianco dishes out whole pies and daytime slices alike. Bianco has long split his time between LA and Phoenix, and he’s even growing his brand locally with Pane Bianco for slices and sandwiches nearby at the same Row DTLA complex.
Bagel + Slice
This carb-focused Highland Park spot from chef Bradford Kent (Olio, Blaze) has a socially responsible and environmentally conscious bent, using 10 percent regenerative wheat for both the pizza and the bagels. The 16-inch, firm-crusted New York-style pies strike a good balance between sauce and cheese, and with two vegan options (vegan cheese and vegan vodka with mushroom-fennel sausage and red onion), there’s something here for everyone.
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Long Beach’s pizza destination is an ode to the New York-style. At this spot from Jonathan Strader and Jack Leahy, expect wide, puffy pies topped generously with sauce and cheese. At Little Coyote’s two locations, toppings range from pepperoni cups and mozzarella to a garlicky white pie with spinach, ricotta, and Calabrian chili.