what's the difference between hand tossed and pan pizza
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What’s The Difference Between Hand Tossed And Pan Pizza

Tell me what you know about the difference between hand-tossed and pan pizza? There are lots of ways for a pizza to be hand-tossed and just as many for it to be made in a pan. Pizzas made with a pan usually have a crispy, bread-like crust and are usually thicker than the type of pizza that is twirled into the air.

Definition Of Pan Pizza And How To Make One

Pan Pizza

Pan pizza is a thin or thick pizza baked in a pan. The bottom and sides of the crust are fried in oil, and it is generally made using a deep-dish pan. Chicago-style and Detroit-style pizza may be regarded as forms of pan pizza. Pan pizza has been popularized by certain U.S. pizza chains, particularly Pizza Hut and Papa John’s.

A pan pizza has a soft and airy crust that is thicker and denser than other styles of pizza. The dough rises more than it does for other pizzas because of the high amount of yeast used in the recipe. The dough is also cooked in oil, which helps give it its distinct taste and texture. A pan pizza also differs from other types because it features toppings on top of the cheese, rather than under it.

The Best Way To Make One:

Place salt, sugar, baking powder, and flour in a mixing bowl. Prepare the dough by mixing the water, oil, and a few drops of plain olive oil in a large mixing bowl. Mix salt and sugar with the water-oil mixture. Stir in a wooden spoon until the dough becomes soft. Divide the dough in half. Knead the first half of the dough on a lightly floured surface until smooth. Coat slackly with plastic wrap and let rest for 15–20 minutes. Repeat this process with the second ball of dough. Punch down both dough balls and divide each ball into four equal pieces.

Definition And The Way Of Making A Hand Tossed Pizza

Hand Tossed Pizza

A hand-tossed pizza is a type of traditional Italian pizza. It is made with a thin and wide crust that has been stretched out by hand. Pizza is then topped or blanketed with tomato sauce and cheese.

Hand-tossed pizza can be found in different varieties. Some are American-style pizzas and others are Italian-style pizzas. Hand-tossed pizzas can be either deep dish or thin crust, depending on what the customer wants. They can also be cut into either slices or squares and can be eaten with a fork or with one’s hands.

The Way of Making A Hand Tossed Pizza:

Step 1. In a small bowl, dissolve 1 cup sugar in 3/4 cups warm water. Stir in 1 package yeast. Let’s stay until foamy, about 10 minutes.

Step 2. In a large bowl, mix together 1 1/4 cups of flour, salt, olive oil, and the yeast mixture. Place the remaining flour in a large mixing bowl. Add enough of the remaining flour to form a soft dough that is no longer sticky. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, 6-8 minutes. Cover and let rise until it has doubled in size, about 30 minutes.

Step 3. Using both hands, hold one fistful of dough in each hand and use your thumbs to stretch the dough out evenly while you rotate it between your hands. Divide the dough into three equal parts, and roll each on a lightly floured surface until it becomes a circle. Transfer to greased 12-in. pizza pans or two 14-in pizza pans.

Step 4. Top with pizza sauce, meat, mushrooms, onion, and cheese.Bake assembled pizza for about 15 minutes.

What Is The Difference Between Hand Tossed And Pan Pizza


Hand-tossed crusts tend to be between 14″ and 16″ in diameter, but they are also available in other sizes. They start as a ball of dough, which is then thrown into the air while spinning a few times. Once the dough stretches out, it’s caught and put on a pan to be topped.

Pan pizzas start as pre-rolled dough that’s placed in a pan coated with oil or butter. These pizzas are typically available in two sizes: Large (12″) and Small (9″). The oil or butter gives each slice a crispier outside edge and helps make the underside of the crust flaky and golden brown.

The Pizza Peel

The pizza peel is one of the factors that make the difference between hand-tossed and pan pizza. Hand-tossed pizzas are thin and crispy, while pan pizzas have a thicker, softer crust. The thickness of the dough determines how long it takes to cook the pizza, so the extra thickness of pan pizzas means they take longer to bake.

Hand-tossed pizza dough is stretched by hand with the help of a rolling pin until it becomes very thin. To make a pan pizza, the dough is pressed into a circular aluminum pizza stone that has been lightly greased with oil.


Hand-tossed pizza is made by stretching the dough out into a thin layer and allowing it to rise in the open air. This creates a crust that bakes up crisp and uneven on the edges, with very little thickness around the center. Pan pizza starts as a ball of dough that has risen. It is then rolled out, laid into a thick-bottomed pan that has been heavily greased with oil or butter, and allowed to rise again before being topped and baked. Pan pizza comes out of the oven with an even crust that rises higher than regular hand-tossed crusts but does not gain much crunchiness around the edges.

Baking Temperature

Hand-tossed pizzas bake at lower temperatures than pan pizzas do. Whereas home ovens can usually reach only 500 degrees Fahrenheit, commercial pizza ovens often reach 700 degrees Fahrenheit or more. At this temperature, you can cook a pizza in around 6 minutes; at home, you’ll need 30 to 40 minutes for a hand-tossed pizza and around an hour for a pan pizza.

Eating Method

As a general rule, Hand-tossed pizza has a thin crust while pan pizza has a thick one. The flavor and texture vary depending on the ingredients and ratio used to make the dough. The dough is then spread out in either a deep dish or regular pan before baking. Pizza sauce is usually ladled onto the dough, top the pizza with cheese and any other desired toppings. Once it’s baked, you’ll notice that pan pizza often has larger sections of browned cheese on top than a hand-tossed pizza does.

Hand-tossed pizza typically contains less cheese than pan pizza does because it can get soggy when heated in a hot oven. If you’re watching your weight or just want to cut down on fat intake, this can be a good thing for you. Hand-tossed pizzas are normally made with fewer toppings than pan pizzas because too much weight from the toppings can cause the dough to tear when tossed by hand.

When it comes to personal preference, the taste is what differentiates these two types of pizzas.


Hand-tossed pizza was popularized by Gennaro Lombardi of Lombardi’s in New York City in 1905. This pizza is most often associated with New York-style pizza because of its thin crust and large slices. The hand-tossed pizza is made by forming a bit of dough into a ball, stretching it until it’s flat, then topping it with sauce, cheese, and other toppings.

The pan pizza is typically called Chicago style. Pizza entrepreneur Ike Sewell invented the first commercial pan pizza in 1943 at his restaurant Pizzeria Uno. Pan pizzas are made by pressing or rolling the dough into the shape of the pan, then adding sauce and toppings. This style of pizza has a thicker crust than hand-tossed pizzas, which gives it more heft and makes for larger slices.

The Price

The price is the difference between a hand-tossed and pan pizza. A large Pan Pizza with a topping is usually more expensive than a Hand-tossed Pizza.

The Cheese

Hand-Tossed pizzas come with cheese in the crust, and the crust is made fresh during the pizza-making process (unlike stuffed crust pizzas, which are ordered separately). The cheese is placed in the crust before it is shaped and tossed. It then melts into the dough as the pizza bakes.

Pan pizzas do not have cheese in the crust. The pizza is covered with cheese. The cheese is not melted into the dough, but simply melted on top of it.

The Ingredients

Hand-tossed pizza typically has a crust that’s about ⅜ of an inch thick. It may also contain more sauce than pan pizza does. A basic hand-tossed pizza consists of sauce and cheese, but you can add toppings to create your custom pizza. Some common toppings include pepperoni, black olives, onions, mushrooms, bacon, and ham.


Hand-tossed pizza is seasoned with salt, pepper, and garlic powder; this differs from other types of pizza. Hand-tossed pizza is also cooked on the stone which adds to the flavor of the pizza. Pan pizza is seasoned with sugar and cinnamon, giving it a sweeter taste than a hand-tossed pizza.


Most people who order pizza are doing so because they know it is not the healthiest food out there. This being said, calories do matter. You should strive to eat as healthy as you can even if you are having pizza. By choosing a pan pizza over one that is hand-tossed, you can save yourself about 100 calories for each slice that you eat. This adds up over time if you eat pizza often.

How The Shape Difference Is There Between Hand-Tossed And Pan Pizza?

In addition to the above factors, what is the difference between hand-tossed and pan pizza? Taking a closer look at the shape of each type of pizza reveals that the hand-tossed style is, in fact, round — or slightly oblong if you’re from New York — while pans are square.

The different geometric shapes of hand-tossed and pan pizzas affect the thickness of the crusts. Hand-tossed pizzas have thinner crusts than pan pizzas because they have more dough to cover a larger surface area.

The two shapes also mean that there are differences in how toppings are spread out on each type of pizza. While hand-tossed pizzas tend to be more even across the pizza because they’re circular and toppings can be spread evenly over the surface area, pan pizzas can have too much topping in some areas and not enough in others.

Pans also tend to retain more heat as they bake, giving them a crispier crust than a hand-tossed pizza.

What’s The Healthier Choice Between Hand-Baked And Pan-Fried Pizza?

Healthier Choice Between Hand-Baked And Pan-Fried Pizza

Hand-tossed pizzas contain more cheese than pan pizzas. The extra cheese content adds more calories and fat to your diet. A thin crust hand-tossed pizza has 310 calories whereas a pan pizza with a thin crust has 260 calories. If you are on a diet, a small difference in portions may add up over time.

If you like regular crust pizzas, a hand-tossed one will have 50% more calories than a pan pizza. Regular crust hand-tossed pizzas contain 430 calories while regular crust pan pizzas have 280 calories.


Hand-Tossed Or Pan Pizza, What Does Their Cost?

The answer is neither is it more expensive. The base price of the pizza will depend on the pizza size, crust, and toppings. However, there are some variations in the prices depending on whether it is hand-tossed or pan pizza.

The main difference between these two crust options is that pan pizza has a thicker crust than a hand-tossed pizza. The thicker crust of pan pizzas takes longer to cook and also requires a longer time in the oven. As a result, it uses more fuel when cooking.

However, besides the presence of extra cheese and toppings, the two types differ little. Both use the same ingredients and toppings in the same quantities. They also have the same base prices for different sizes, crusts, and toppings.

The only difference is that pan pizzas will be more expensive because of their thicker crusts. This makes them more expensive to cook and also adds to the cost of delivery as they take up more space during transportation and need additional fuel to keep them hot until they reach their destination.

Which Top Pizza Topping Is America’s Least Favorite?

One in four pizzas ordered is topped with it.  The second most popular topping is sausage, followed by the usual suspects of mushrooms, onions, and olives.

How Many Minutes Does It Take To Make A Pizza?

That depends on a few things: the size of your pizza, its toppings, and whether you’re cooking from scratch or starting with ready-made ingredients. Let’s take a look at each one:

Size — the smaller the pizza, the faster it will cook. This is because small pizzas will have less mass, allowing heat to penetrate faster and more evenly. A larger pizza has more surface area than a similarly sized cube of dough and sauce; that means it must be cooked longer to reach optimal temperature through its center.

Do You Carry Gluten-Free Pizza Crust For Hand-Tossed Pizza?

Hand-tossed pizza is delicious, but there can be just one problem. It doesn’t have enough sauce. If you’ve ever had a hand-tossed pizza and felt that the sauce was lacking, you’re not alone. Many people feel the same way. Luckily, there are steps you can take to ensure that your next hand-tossed pizza has more sauce than the last.

Pizzas with more cheese won’t have as much sauce.

Some people believe that asking for no cheese will ensure a saucy pizza. This is incorrect. To ensure that your pizza has plenty of sauce, you’ll need to ask for extra sauce, preferably at least twice as much as usual.

Nutrition Facts For Hand-Tossed Pizza 

Serving Size: 1 Slice (1/8 10″ pizza)

Calories: 200 (Calories from Fat: 70)

Total Fat: 7g (Saturated Fat: 2.5 g)

Cholesterol: 20 mg

Sodium: 360 mg

Total Carbohydrate: 25g

Dietary Fiber: 2g

Sugars 3g

Protein 9 g

Can I Place A Delivery Order For A Hand-Tossed Pizza Over The Internet?

Yes, you can place a delivery order for a hand-tossed pizza over the Internet.

You can also place pickup orders and/or carry out orders via the Internet.

Can Lactose Intolerant People Still Eat Hand Tossed Pizzas?

Yes, lactose-intolerant people can still eat hand-tossed pizzas. There are now a lot of lactose-free cheeses and pizza toppings that are available on the market that can be used by those who are lactose intolerant. The only thing to remember when eating these kinds of pizzas is that they need to be heated up nicely so that they can be digested easily by their bodies. Lactose intolerant people should also avoid eating pizza toppings like pepperoni as these contain huge amounts of lactose.

Is Every Crust In The Hand-Tossed Section Made With Cheese?

Pizza Hut’s Hand-Tossed crust is topped with a cheese blend, but the pizza dough itself is not made with cheese. If you are ordering a pizza without cheese, be sure to specify that you would like the Hand-Tossed crust. Our other crust options are either made without cheese or can be ordered without cheese.

Do You Carry Gluten-Free Pizza Crust For Hand-Tossed Pizza?

Yes, you can get gluten-free crust at Pizza Hut by ordering the hand-tossed crust. However, they do not recommend this crust for anyone who is extremely sensitive to gluten because their foods are prepared in kitchens that handle wheat flour and other ingredients containing gluten.


The differences between hand-tossed pizza and pan pizza are numerous. Essentially, it comes down to the shape of the pizza and the way it is prepared. Hand-tossed pies typically have a thin crust, whereas pan pizza is less uniform in shape and tends to have a thick crust that forms a raised lip around the edge. Dough, sauce, temp, cook time, toppings—elements of each factor into the decision of which one is better for you.

People always debate over which type of pizza is better, hand-tossed or pan. Through many hours of research, Saved By The Max has discovered the answer. It all depends on what you are looking for in a pizza, if you want thick doughy crust and a crispy edge then you can’t go wrong with hand-tossed. If you prefer a thin crust go with the pan style.

Matt Cowan

Matt Cowan is a bartender at Saved By The Max. He graduated from Arizona State University and has been bartending for about 20 years now, starting when he was just thirteen!

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