The Ultimate Philly Pizza Places for a Legit Slice
Hand-tossed, artisanal, thick square, tomato, upside down...we’ve got ’em all.
In a relentless year where the hits don’t stop coming, let pizza be the comfort to which you can always turn -- especially when it works so well in takeout form. “We are lucky that pizza is a weekly staple for our customers, and it lends itself to delivery and takeout more than most options,” says John Sidoti, executive chef of Pizzeria Vetri, which has two Philly locations.
And while pizza is easy for us to get, let’s not forget the effort, time, and technique it takes to achieve the perfect pie. “Fermentation is the key to the flavor in our dough,” Sidoti says. “It’s a four-day process and every one of those days are critical to allowing that fermented flavor to shine through.”
Regardless of what kind of pie format you prefer -- hand-tossed, artisanal, thick square, tomato, upside down -- pizza is the ultimate comfort food and we appreciate it in 2020 more than ever. Whatever you’re looking for, it’s here, and you can love it from the comforts of your home. Take a look at our 23 picks for Philly’s best pizza right now.
For the perfect cross between laidback hand-tossed pies and artisanal Neapolitan-style, Clarkville is the choice. The eclectic pizza offerings undergo periodic updates (as does the craft beer list), offering classic cheese-and-sauce fixings alongside options featuring Sriracha honey, roasted lamb, or even some roasted pork shoulder.
How to order: No reservations for outdoor dining, call 215-387-4992 for pickup, or get delivery through Caviar
Emmy Squared - Queen Village
The Philly outpost of this delectable Detroit-style square pizza chain opened in Queen Village last year, and we’re so lucky to have it here. Sink your teeth into ultra-thick red or white pies and then take a break to sink your teeth into the equally amazing cheesy garlic sticks. In the face of COVID-19, Emmy’s has added new rooftop dining to its offering for yet another way to try the pies for yourself.
How to order: Make reservations on OpenTable, get takeout via UpServe, order delivery via Caviar, Uber Eats, Postmates, or DoorDash for delivery
This corner pizza shop opened in 2018 with very big shoes -- or real estate -- to fill, taking over the space formerly occupied by the infamous Pizzeria Beddia. Turns out these crisp and acutely charred pizzas from Chef Marcello Montagnaro are just as crave-worthy and wait-inducing. Even if you don’t normally go for white pizza, the cream base with hints of lemon and basil is a must.
How to order: Order takeout in-person and follow Instagram updates for order-ahead days
Mattei Family Pizza
The focus at Mattei is so-called “Molise-style” pizza, taking culinary inspiration from a southern region of Italy, which translates to pizzas that offer a Neapolitan-adjacent chewy crust and soft center but with the larger sizes that’s much more common in Italian-American pizza. Outside the pizza world, though, the menu also features pasta, quesadillas, burritos, wings, nachos, tacos, and burgers. You definitely won’t go hungry.
How to order: Order online for pickup and delivery
Stephen Starr’s Pizzeria Stella is a cozy retreat for Neapolitan-style pies and other delectables from the wood-fired oven. Arancini, marinated olives, and crab bucatini help round out elevated yet comforting offerings.
How to order: Call 215-320-8000 for pickup or order delivery via Caviar and DoorDash
Blackbird offers pizzas and cheesesteaks that can win the heart of any vegan. The entirely plant-based menu features seitan, tofu, garlic, and a whole lot of violife mozzarella to give vegans the joy of pizza that everyone so deserves. If you’re in Center City, also check out the spot’s sister location, 20th Street Pizza.
How to order: Order takeout via Toast and delivery via DoorDash
Snap Custom Pizza
This made-to-order, fast-casual pizza shop creates surprisingly superb personal pies that can go crust-to-crust against some of the city’s ritzier options. It doesn’t hurt that the cheese and dough is made in-house daily, or that the toppings include everything from Italian sausage to chipotle corn to truffle oil. Snap also has a collection of shops outside Philly, too.
How to order: Order takeout online or delivery via Caviar
Circles + Squares
The pizza influencer (?) known as Pizza Gutt crafts pizza under a few different shop names: there’s Circles + Squares for the Olde Richmond location, Pizza Plus for the East Passyunk, and Pizza What as the metaphysical and literal landing page for all (as well as orders out of Bourbon & Branch in NoLibs). Regardless of how you go about procuring these creations, it’s essential you try both the round hand-tossed and the fluffy crunch deep dish square pies, preferably in one sitting. The pepperoni has a little kick of spice and curly fries are always a side option.
How to order: Order online for delivery and pickup
Pizza Jawn sells out weekly thanks to its three equally luscious types of pies: the Pizza Jawn Grandma (a hybrid grandma-Sicilian style with sauce on top), the Pizza Jawn Round (hybrid of NYC-Neapolitan), and the Pizza Jawn Detroit (with cheesy crust!), all of which can be made vegan, too. Double pepperoni is a favorite at the shop, and keep your eyes peeled for other specials on Eagles game days.
How to order: Follow on Instagram for pre-order pickup links on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday
Nomad prides itself on using local, organic produce and natural meats to make its pizzas. Since its origins as a food truck, Nomad exemplifies the ideal wheels-to-mortar progression, even in the face of COVID-19, with two additional locations outside the city. Even better, the spot offers a decent selection of craft beer, which comes in handy when you’re working your way through a Spicy Sopressata topped with honey and sea salt.
How to order: Limited outdoor seating or order takeout online
This artisanal thin-crust pizza is among the very best, and visiting the shop in person means you are setting foot into the one and only Pizza Museum of Philadelphia. Pizza Brain has been a constant for Philly’s pizza landscape even as the city seems to have more options than ever before, even stronger with its Brewerytown Pizza Dads outpost.
How to order: Order online for pickup or Caviar for delivery
The Couch Tomato Café
Gluten-intolerant pizza lovers, find peace at Couch Tomato! Not only does Couch Tomato offer fresh ingredients atop unique signature pizzas big enough to feed a crowd, but customers can opt for gluten-free and whole-grain crusts. Try the Godfather: a perfectly prosciutto-topped masterpiece complete with arugula, red pepper, garlic, and balsamic glaze.
How to order:Online for pickup or delivery
Despite the plethora of Italian food all around us, it can sometimes be tough to find a classic pizza spot that can be your go-to delivery option without breaking the bank. One of the best options to diffuse this problem is Rosario’s, a South Philly staple that simultaneously boasts a delicious menu of Mexican-American fare. When it comes to pizza, though, you can opt for “classic” toppings or mingle the two cuisines for one of Rosario’s famous Mexican-style pizzas, of which there are no less than 12 varieties.
How to order: Order takeout and delivery via GrubHub
Angelo’s South Philly storefront offers mouth-watering cheesesteaks, bagels, and other freshly baked goods, but the real star is of course the pizza. Owner Danny DiGiampietro has been cited many times saying Angelo’s can do any kind of pizza style, from Detroit to Roman to Neopolitan to Tomato and beyond, as well as more American-style pizza sold by the slice. Operating through COVID, peak at the limited daily menu that still manages to dole out some surprises.
How to order: Call 215-922-0000 for pickup
Dock Street Brewery & Restaurant
One of the city’s oldest craft breweries is also home to some of the best pizza in town. With a brand new pizza oven in the works at Dock Street West, you can soon snag the goods at both locations, including the original in Cedar Park. Supplement the rotating brew selection with hit-the-spot carbs with stone-ground flour fired on hardwood, offering artisanal without the diminutive size. During Covid-19 Dock Street has also set up a donation system so you can send a pizza to health workers.
How to order: Walk-up for limited outdoor dining, order takeout online or delivery via Uber Eats
Alice offers thick and crispy squares to savor, al taglio style, giving you the option to mix and match from the pizza of your choosing -- or get a mega chunk in whatever you’re currently craving. The all-time favorite is the signature Philly Special, created in honor of Super Bowl LII and fixed with pesto, ricotta, sun-dried tomatoes, cheese sauce, arugula, and Parm. Why not relive the glory of the past in the form of pizza?
How to order: Order takeout and delivery through Caviar
The Original Tacconelli's Pizzeria
Tacconelli’s is a Philly institution that spans generations, supplying tomato pie to the masses for nearly three-quarters of a century. If you’re not into tomato pie, though, you can opt instead for the regular, white, or margherita varieties.
How to order: Order takeout via Toast.
You should definitely start with the spot’s signature Rotolo, which comes in a Cinnabon-like shape and uncoils to reveal a perfect medley of pizza dough, mortadella, ricotta, and pistachio pesto. Save room for 12-inch Napoletano or 24-inch Metro pies, all fired for crisp and lovely texture.
How to order: Make a reservation for outdoor dining in Callowhill or order takeout and delivery via Caviar.
Pizzeria Bedia has come a long way since sparking national hysteria when Bon Appetit proclaimed it the best pizza in the U.S. in 2015. Since then, pizza maker and owner Joe Beddia has opened a larger dining room with a full staff and dining. The model has shifted a bit in Covid times, but the beautifully crafted round pies -- and the thoughtfully curated cocktail menu that goes with them -- have not.
How to order: Reserve for outdoor dining or order online for pickup/delivery
Barbuzzo Mediterranean Kitchen & Bar
This narrow, bi-level restaurant fills up quickly thanks to artfully made pizzas incorporating unexpected ingredients, as well as locally inspired desserts like the signature budino. For pizza, try the Uovo if you want “secret” white sauce, Parmesan, fresh greens, and a truffle farm egg as the cherry on top.
How to order: Order takeout via Toast or delivery via Caviar
Luigi's Pizza Fresca
For easy fast-casual pizza by the slice, Luigi’s is a Fairmount staple, especially pre-, post- or amid a night of bar crawling. While we might not exactly be hopping from tavern to tavern right now, you can still fill up on stuffed pizza, like the grilled veggie and meat pie. Plus, the spot opens everyday at 10am, which means you don’t need to have pizza on a bagel to have pizza any time.
How to order: Order delivery and takeout online
Santucci's Original Square Pizza
Santucci’s upside down pie definitely isn’t for everyone, but if you’re an advocate of the red, look no further. Take in the satisfying crunch of the thick crust as you find all the mozzarella bubbling beneath the sauce. It’s a Philly staple everyone should try at least once, but the menu has plenty else to offer too.
How to order: Order delivery or pickup online