Let’s get one thing straight: if you’re in the mood for a slice of pizza, just your favorite slice will do. Whether you like simple or pepperoni, you won’t miss popular pizza chains like Domino’s, Pizza Hut and Papa Johns’s. But some take it a step further to make their pizza from fresh, never-frozen dough.
While frozen preformed dough can produce a consistency that becomes a chain’s trademark, some actually form and stretch fresh dough in-house. A handful of pizza chains across the country, both regional and national, use fresh, never-frozen dough — and even some places you wouldn’t expect.
Read on to discover the seven pizza chains that make this simple yet effective meal a hit with kids and adults alike. And the next time it’s pizza night at your house, be sure to visit one of these chains or order a handmade pizza from one of these chains that will delight your taste buds.
This fast-casual pizza chain uses a conveyor belt to move customers from end to end as they create their own personalized pizza. Blaze Pizza prides itself on using fresh dough made daily in-house using unbleached flour, filtered water, extra virgin olive oil, salt and a touch of sugar. Plus, the ingredients used come from animals that are raised humanely, so you can feel good about what you eat. From dough to topping, you’ll have a delicious pizza in your hands in less than three minutes after it reaches the sizzling hot oven.
Grimaldi’s opened its first New York location just under the Brooklyn Bridge. Since that time, the chain has expanded into more than 11 states nationwide, including Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Idaho, Kansas, Kentucky, Nevada, South Carolina, Texas and Wisconsin. Key to the chain’s success has been their fresh dough, which is made daily in-house with their “secret recipe” that uses water that mimics New York water to create its signature thick crust everywhere you visit.
With its first location in Palo Alto, California, this pizza chain has expanded to more than 250 locations in California, Utah, Oregon, Nevada, Idaho and Arizona. Mountain Mike’s Pizza uses fresh dough made in-store daily to create some of their signature pies, including The Everest, Pikes Peak, Robbers Roost, and Garlic Tuscan, alongside their classic cheese and pepperoni.
It’s not often that you come across a pizza chain that serves deep-dish pizza, but Jet’s Pizza is one of the exceptions. Dough is made in-house daily and the chain uses two different types of dough made from a flour blend milled especially for them. Aside from the dough, the pizza is loaded with toppings and finished off with a gooey caramelized cheese that’s baked to a golden crisp.
As of early 2023, there are over 6,692 Domino’s locations in the United States. Aside from five types of crust to choose from, Domino’s uses fresh, never-frozen dough that’s hand-pressed into a pizza pan for a thick crust. After a slice of pizza (or two), finish your meal with the popular cinnamon bread twists or marbled brownie cookies.
With over 530 stores in 21 states, Hungry Howie’s has garnered a dedicated following for its invention of flavored crusts that customers know and love. Pizza dough is made fresh daily at each of its locations, and customers have the option to choose from one of eight crust flavors: butter, asiago cheese, Cajun, butter cheese, sesame, garlic herb, ranch, onion, and the featured crust flavor.
Looking for more deep dish pizza? Uno’s Pizzeria & Grill is known for its deep dish pies made from fresh dough. Customers can choose from single, regular, or large pies of the chain’s popular pizzas, including Chicago Classic, Chicago Meat Market, Numero Uno, and more. And if you don’t live close to a location, you can even have their in-house pizza delivered right to your door.
Casey Clark is currently studying journalism at Hofstra University with a passion for food, beauty and entertainment. Read more about Casey