You probably have never heard about Colorado-style pizza unless you are from Colorado. This pizza is also called the Colorado mountain pie by the locals. This is because everything about it is big; big crust, lots of cheese, and lots of toppings.
What is Colorado-style pizza?
Colorado-style pizzas are unlike any other pizza styles. This is because their crust is very thick, and it has a lot of toppings. This unique pie has its crust made of honey.
It also looks different from other crusts since it is braided. The braid pattern is to hold the toppings so that they do not spill out of the pizza. This is necessary since the colorado pizza has a lot of toppings.
Unlike other pizza styles, the Colorado-style pizza can also be a main dish or a dessert. When taking it as dessert, you dunk it in honey as you eat.
Are Colorado and Chicago deep-dish the same?
Both Colorado and Chicago deep-dish style pizza has a thick crust, and this might be confusing. However, these two types of pizzas have three main differences: the way of preparation, the taste of the crust, and the toppings.
To prepare a Colorado pie, you have to designate around 10 minutes of cooking time. For Chicago deep-dish, the cooking time is usually more than 40 minutes.
Taste of the crust
Colorado pizza style has a sweetened crust. You add honey to the dough instead of sugar. This gives it a distinct flavor.
The mountain pie has a wide range of toppings. You can choose up to over 50 toppings for your pie.
Colorado-style pizza history
The father of the mountain pizza is Beau Jo’s Pizzeria. In the late 19th century, a man named Charles Shields built a building that housed tenants on Mier Street in colorado.
After some decades, things changed when the building got a new owner. He changed it to a pizzeria. The owner had a few challenging years as the business was not doing so well. He used to sleep on the pizzeria floor on a sleeping bag and mostly only ate the pizza to save on costs.
One time, there came skiers who saw his pizzeria and tried out the Colorado-style pizza. Soon after, the pizza became a hit as they spread the word. It wasn’t long before the company opened more restaurants in other locations.
Unfortunately, they shut down some of the locations have been shut down today, but around 6 locations still sell this pizza.
Today, Beau Jo’s pizzeria uses more than 50000 pounds of honey yearly in making this pizza. Additionally, the pizza is served together with honey for customers who want to drizzle it on their pie. Alternatively, you can dip it in honey.
Beau Jo’s provides outdoor dining, which provides a relaxing atmosphere after a long day of mountain activities.
Why do we love colorado style pizza so much?
People love the colorado pizza for its uniqueness above everything else. Do not have it confused with Chicago’s deep-dish. Apart from the crust, these two pizza styles are so different. Here are the reasons why we think it is unique.
Honey is used instead of sugar.
All the other pizza styles use sugar in the dough. But for Colorado-style pizza, honey is added to the dough. This gives the crust a unique and exciting flavor.
Additionally, customers can keep the crust in honey after eating the flat central part that has toppings. This is why we call the Colorado-style pizza both a main dish and dessert.
Is an eight-inch pizza
Restaurants serve the Colorado-style pizza in a size diameter of 8 inches. This is quite a small pizza, but do not be fooled by that and order too much. It has a lot of very filling toppings. One colorado pizza can feed 3 to 4 people.
Fresh and authentic ingredients
Pizzerias source ingredients used on the pizza from local producers. For instance, the honey used on the pizza is from the Rocky Mountains. This gives two reasons to buy Colorado-style pizza. First, to support local business and second, to enjoy a delicious meal.
You choose your toppings.
Aren’t we all tired of the same old pepperoni pizza? When you visit colorado and ask for a colorado-style pizza, you will get to customize your pizza. There is an arrangement of toppings where you get to choose your favorite toppings.
You can enjoy the classics in another way.
If you are a Margherita pizza fan, you can still have it in Colorado. But this time, it will not come in thin crusts as usual but the fantastic, honey-sweetened colorado-style crust.
The colorado style Margherita pizza weighs five pounds. Its toppings include Parmesan cheese, fresh basil, whole-milk mozzarella, and Roma tomatoes.
There are healthier options for you.
If you have a strict diet or some sensitive eating needs, You can still have your mountain pizza and enjoy it. Most establishments offer gluten-free options. There are also vegetarian options if you want.
Some spots offer seasonal ingredients and variations. Most of the ingredients available are seasonal; therefore, what you find today, you might not find after some months. You can even have game meat in some spots. Some other locations allow you to infuse cannabis into your pizza if you want.
You can eat it the traditional way.
The traditional way of eating pizza is through your hands. Some people approach the Colorado-style pizza with a fork and knife. But you do not have to. Because of the braiding on the sides, the toppings will not fall over. Hence you can easily eat it while holding it.
The crispy crust
You would probably expect that since this pizza has a thick crust and a lot of toppings and cheese, it would be soggy. Interestingly, the crust is crispy and delicious. The chefs cook it in a wood-fired oven, making the crust soft, crispy, and chewy on the inside.
Comes with salad
When you order Colorado-style pizza, the restaurant should have a salad bar to choose the salad you want to accompany your pizza. A little vegetable to have your meal balanced is a good deal.
Do not forget to enjoy the meal with a glass of wine.
It is affordable
Pizza mostly costs 25 dollars for two pounds. You can still get a three-pound at under 30 dollars. This means the bigger the pizza, the more affordable it is.
Where will you get Colorado-style pizza?
Beau Jo‘s Idaho Springs
Beau Jo’s is located in Idaho Springs in the United States. It is the pizzeria where Colorado-style pizza was born. This pizzeria is known for its generosity with the toppings. Most of their pizzas weigh almost 5 pounds.
If you have had a long day and are quite hungry and looking for a place where you can get as much food, this is the place for you. Their dough is fresh all day since they make more every three hours.
Everything is right with their pizza. The pizza is filled with just the right amount of meat if you are going for an all-meat pizza. It is kind of greasy at the bottom, not in a gross way but just right. The crust is moist, crispy, and flavourful.
The crust at the edge of the pizza is huge and raised to lock in the toppings. The central part of the crust is not thick. It would be best if you always started with the inner parts that have toppings then move to the edges. Dip the breadstick like edges in honey and enjoy the last bits of your pizza.
They offer an outdoor experience and no indoor dining. They also have delivery services if you are too tired to leave your house.
After more than 45 years of experience, remembering they have the original recipe for Colorado-style pizza, you do not want to go anywhere else for your pizza because they promise quality, and quality is what they deliver.
Hops and Pie
This establishment is located in Denver. Critics have recommended it as one of the best places to find Colorado-style pizza. What makes this spot unique is the presence of local brews that are served. They have over 20 types of beer.
They have unique toppings like pickled jalapeno and blueberry barbecue sauce. They also put Modus Hoperandi beer on the dough. This brings the effect vodka has on a pie crust. The dough is then left to age for three days before being baked. The crust becomes tender, flaky, and moisturized.
Hops and pie have delivery services too. You order online, through their website, or you can call them to place an order. However, the pizza takes longer to bake here than most places, but it is worth it.
Their pizza comes in sizes of between 12 inches, 14 inches, and 16 inches. They also have gluten-free options, which are only available in one size: 12 inches. Note that this gluten-free option contains eggs too.
If you are in Denver and looking to hang out with friends, then Hops and pie is a place to checkout.
High Mountain pies
This is another place you can find Colorado-style pizza if you are in Leadville. This spot has been said to have amazing toppings. They make their pizza with fresh ingredients and use flavourful spices.
The pizzas are creative and gourmet. They come with ingredients like kale, portabella mushrooms, braised pork, manchego cheese, avocado, to mention a few.
High mountain pies have their pizza in 12 inches, 14 inches, and 16 inches. The pizza price varies according to the type of pizza you will choose; however, all their pizza cost between 13 dollars to 23 dollars.
High Mountain Pies has three pizza classes: the local favorites, vegetarian pies, and specialty pies. Under the local favorites, you will find the Deluxe, Crocodile, and Carnivore. The vegetarian pies have Square pie, Margherita, and the Mediterranean. Finally, for specialty types, you will find Bacchanalia, San Luis, and Big Island.
Don’t forget to get the salad to go with your pizza and a glass of wine.
Rocky Mountain Pizza Co.
This establishment is in Glenwood springs. This is a family-friendly location that you should explore with your family. Their colorado style pizza comes in two forms. There are signature pizzas that you will choose from the menu. Then there is a ‘build your own’ option.
The signature pizza comes in sizes of 10 inches, 14 inches, and 16 inches. There is a topping arrangement of meaty toppings and veggie toppings.
They also have a beer and wine menu that you should explore. After a busy day, this is a place where you can relax, have your glass of wine, and eat a slice of your favorite pizza.
If you are planning a pizza party, the Rocky Mountains is the place for you. The Rocky Mountains offers private events services.
At the moment, there is no indoor dining, but there is an option for outdoor dining. They have heaters; therefore, do not worry about the cold when it is winter.
Colorado-style pizza FAQ
Why isn’t it sold per slice?
Most pizzas are sold by the slice. The Colorado mountain pie has a lot of toppings. Some restaurants like Beau Jo’s allow you to choose your toppings from a range of 50 types of toppings. For this reason, it would not make sense to sell a pizza with four toppings at the same price as one that has ten toppings. Hence it is sold by the pound.
The standard size of a colorado style pizza is eight inches. This eight-inch pizza weighs about a pound. But you can top your pizza to have a two-pound pizza, three-pound, or even five pounds.
What is the biggest colorado pie you can order?
A regular colorado pie’s standard size is 8 inches, which comes in one, two, three, or five-pound variations. However, there are places like Beau Jo’s that have a mega pizza that is 14 pounds. This pizza goes for seventy-five dollars but is usually on offer. If you can finish it with a friend, you get it for free.
Colorado-style pizza is a must-try for every food lover. When you visit Colorado, you can sample the pizza at Beau Jo’s. But there are other smaller places that compete with Beau Jo’s that also have fantastic colorado style pizza. Just ask a local for guidance on where to go.
If you are with a friend, you can try the 14-pound pizza. It cost 75 dollars, but if you finish it, it will be free.