Keto Chicago Style Deep Dish Pizza

Keto Chicago Style Deep Dish Pizza

Keto Chicago Style Deep Dish Pizza is a delicious keto and gluten free take on a classic Chicago style deep dish pizza! Flaky (non-fathead dough) crust, cheese, sausage, and the sauce to top it all off!

This keto Chicago style deep dish pan-style pizza is definitely a classic favorite for me and I absolutely have to have it a few times a year. When I tell people I grew up in the Chicago area and they know I’m a foodie, I often get asked about classic Chicago style deep dish pizza.

Though deep dish has serious roots in Chicago, most Chicagoans are regular thin crust pizza eaters for their weekly pizza night. Deep dish, in reality,  is spared for those special pizza dining occasions, and rightfully so! 

I’m not typically one for crazy keto recreations (because nothing ever fully replaces the real thing) and I’ve never been a fathead dough fan either. But, I wanted to challenge myself to try and create a flaky, buttery, deep dish keto crust that would really do this pizza justice. 

Challenge accepted!

Be sure to read through the post (It’s a long one but there are a lot of moving parts in this recipe despite it being simple to make) for all the tips and tricks to make the perfect keto Chicago style deep dish pizza at home! Full recipe at the bottom of the post!

Keto Chicago Style Deep Dish Pizza

Why This Recipe Works

If you’ve never had deep dish pizza, you need to know a few things. First, it’s all about the way it’s layered. The deep dish has a thicker, flaky, bread-like crust, layered next with cheese, and sausage (preferred), and then topped with tomato sauce. Yes… the sauce goes on the top of the pizza!

I modeled this recipe off of my favorite Chicago deep dish spot, Lou Malnati’s (they have by far the best crust in my opinion). I wanted to achieve a similar texture and flavor that was keto and gluten-free. 

The crust on this pizza is a gluten-free, keto crust that is made of almond flour along with psyllium husk and cold butter (and a few other ingredients).

This crust turns out perfectly flaky and bready. I understand that many gluten free things are not as satisfying as their gluten filled counterparts, but this pizza is just as satisfying as a regular deep dish pizza!

“School” Supplies:

  • 9″ Cast Iron Skillet
  • Food Processor 
  • Small Pot
  • Measuring Cup/ Spoons

“Class” Notes:

Welcome to my virtual classroom! Use the guided notes below where I often answer commonly asked questions I get from readers and cooks just like you.

This information is meant to help you have a stronger understanding of this recipe and the process so you can find success all on your own.

Ready to begin cooking? Simply jump to the recipe card below and begin.

Ingredients for Keto Chicago Style Deep Dish Pizza:

For The Crust:

  • Almond Flour
  • Parmesan Cheese
  • Psyllium Husk Powder
  • Baking Powder
  • Cold Butter
  • Egg
  • Salt

For The Pizza:

  • Italian Sausage
  • Crushed Tomatoes
  • Italian Seasoning
  • Salt
  • Grated Onion
  • Garlic
  • Freshly Grated Mozzarella Cheese

Cooking Instructions:

Keto Pizza Crust:

  1. To make the crust, combine all the dry ingredients together in a food processor like you would a pie crust. I find the food processor works the best for fully incorporating the ingredients and really cutting in the cold butter. Next, add the cold butter. Finally, add the egg and mix until combined. Set aside the dough and make the next layer.
Keto Chicago Style Deep Dish Pizza

Sausage Patty:

What I love is how unique sausage Chicago deep dish pizza is. Instead of crumbled sausage, it’s one thin layer of sausage patty across the base of the pizza.

  1. To prepare the sausage patty, press the Italian sausage into a thin layer across the entire bottom of the same cast iron pan you plan to prepare your pizza in.
  2. Heat it on the stove over medium heat and brown the bottom. Carefully flip it and continue to cook and brown.
  3. Remove it and place it on a paper towel to remove the excess grease (no one wants greasy pizza). Let the pan cool back down before adding the crust to that same pan.

Cheese And Sauce Layer:

  1. Next, grate the mozzarella. Pre-shredded works in a pinch… but hey, you already committed to this recipe so make it better with freshly grated cheese. It has fewer processed additives and will melt so much nicer (check out that cheese shot y’all)! 
  2. Next up is the homemade sauce. Simply combine some crushed tomatoes, grated onion, fresh garlic, and some Italian seasonings together in a pot. Allow the tomatoes to cook down a bit on low heat and to develop flavor. Once the sauce is done, keep it on low heat until ready to use. Note: If you prefer not to make homemade sauce, use Rao’s or Prego No Sugar Added to keep things keto!
Keto Chicago Style Deep Dish Pizza

Assembly & Grilling:

  1. Start by pressing the dough into the base of the pan using your fingers. Carefully push the dough up the sides of the pan as evenly as possible.
  2. The crust will puff up a bit as it bakes as well. In order to avoid it developing any air pockets or bubbles, use a fork to poke some holes in the crust.
  3. In order for the crust to fully cook and not be doughy, you need to par-bake the crust alone first.
  4. I like to toss mine on the grill over indirect heat in the summer (no need to heat up the kitchen but the oven works fine too). Par-bake the crust until the bottom is set and the top is only slightly doughy.
  5. Next, layer on all the toppings. First goes all of that freshly grated cheese, then your cooked sausage patty, and topped off with the sauce.
  6. Place the pizza back on the grill (or in the oven) to cook until the dough is totally set and the cheese is melted and the sauce is bubbly.
  7. Let it rest for about 10 minutes before cutting. Cut the pizza into 6-8 pieces and serve with a little parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes if desired. Serve and enjoy!
Keto Chicago Style Deep Dish Pizza

Expert Tips

  • I love using a cast iron pan for this pizza because it’s a perfect size, heats evenly, and produces a really nice crispy bottom to the crust. I recommend using parchment paper to avoid any post pan scrubbing, however. If you don’t have a cast iron pan, you can use a 9-inch pie pan!
  • You can forego the homemade sauce if you prefer. For good keto options, go with some Rao’s or Prego No Sugar Added. I personally like to make my own so I can control what goes into it!
  • If you don’t have a food processor, you can use a pastry cutter to mix the butter into the dough. You can also mix the butter with your hands by cutting the cold butter into small pieces, and then squishing the butter with your fingers with the dry ingredients.
  • Keto Chicago Style Deep Dish Pizza is pretty versatile. If you want, you can add a layer of vegetables like mushrooms, olives, and onions. Make this pizza your own!
Keto Chicago Style Deep Dish Pizza

Frequently Asked Questions

What is psyllium husk powder and is it necessary?

Psyllium husk powder is generally used in gluten free baking as a binder. It will help make the dough more cohesive and less crumbly like some gluten free doughs can be. If you don’t have this on hand, you can try flaxseed instead.

What makes this dough non-fathead?

If you are commonly eating keto types of doughs, you have probably heard of fathead dough. This type of dough is made of a mixture of cheeses along with a grain-free flour and egg. I am not a huge fan of the large amount of cheese that is added to fathead doughs. So, I created a non-fathead dough that creates a flaky, bready pizza crust!

Why does the butter need to be cold?

Whenever a recipe calls for cold butter, then the dough will be baked into a flaky crust. The cold butter evaporates in the oven in between the layers of flour and mechanically creates layers of flakes. Cold butter is an easy way to make a much more delicious crust!

More Chicago Inspired Keto Recipes You’ll Love:

If you love this keto-friendly Chicago-style deep dish pizza, try some of my other Chicago inspired recipes!

Keto Chicago Style Deep Dish Pizza
Keto Chicago Style Deep Dish Pizza

Keto Chicago Style Deep Dish Pizza

A classic Chicago style deep dish pizza is the perfect weekend dish. It’s keto, gluten free, and not a fathead dough either!
4.84 from 37 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Recipes
Cuisine: American
Keyword: best keto pizza recipe, keto deep dish pizza, keto pizza, non fat head dough keto pizza
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Additional Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 467kcal
Author: Bon Appeteach


Almond Flour Pizza Crust:

  • 2 cups Almond Flour
  • 1/4 cup Fine Parmesan Cheese
  • 1 tbsp. Psyllium Husk Powder
  • 1 tsp Baking Powder
  • 6 tbsp. Cold Butter
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 tsp. Salt

Pizza Sauce:

  • 1, 14.5 oz Crushed Tomatoes
  • 2 tsp. Italian Seasonings
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1/4 Onion grated
  • 1-2 Garlic cloves minced

Additional Toppings:

  • 1/2 lb. Italian Sausage
  • 2 cups Fresh Grated Mozzarella Cheese


  • In a food processor, combine the almond flour, parmesan, baking powder, psyllium husk, and salt. Pulse to mix. Then add in the diced cold butter and pulse again until the butter is cut into the dry ingredients. Finally, add in the egg and pulse one last time until the dough forms into a ball. Set it aside.
  • In a 9″ cast iron skillet, carefully press out the Italian sausage into the base of the pan. Cook on medium heat on the stove until the bottom is browned. Carefully flip it and cook the otherside. When fully cooked, place on a paper towel to drain the grease. Allow the pan to cool while making the sauce.
  • In a small pot, add the crushed tomatoes, grated onion, garlic, salt, and Italian seasoning together. Allow it to cook down and break the tomatoes down more with a wooden spoon if necessary. Cook on low.
  • Grate the cheese and set it aside.
  • Preheat your grill (and set for indirect heat) or oven to 400F. Assemble the base of the deep dish pizza by taking the dough and pressing it into the base of the pan and a few inches up the sides as well (like a pie). Use a fork to poke holes across the entire crust. Par-bake the crust like this for 15 minutes.
  • After par-baking, fill the deep dish pizza with the remaining layers. First, layer the dough with the cheese, add the sausage patty and then cover it with the sauce. Place it back on the grill on indirect heat (or oven) and continue to bake for another 15-20 minutes. The crust should be cooked, golden brown, and the sauce should be bubbly.
  • Remove from the heat and let sit for about 10 minutes before cutting and serving. Add some extra parmesan cheese over the top and sprinkle with red pepper flakes.


Not a fan of sausage? Swap the sausage patty out with your favorite pizza toppings!


Serving: 1g | Calories: 467kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 38g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 24g | Cholesterol: 87mg | Sodium: 1556mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 5g

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Recipe Rating

  1. 1 star
    The crust was so salty that my family of six would barely eat it. I checked several times and certain I followed the recipe. Next time I will try more like 1/2-1 tsp salt.

    1. Hi,

      I first want to say I’m so sorry this happened. I went back through the directions and realized the issue- the directions show salt is used in the crust and in the homemade sauce but I can see how it’s unclear with how it should be divided. Only 1 tsp was intended for the actual crust. This is an old recipe on my site and I’ll definitely be rewriting the directions to be clearer. Again, I’m so sorry for the confusion!! Thanks for taking the time to let me know. I hope you have a great weekend.

  2. I had never thought to look for a keto version of my beloved giordano’s but I’m going to give this a try. On giordano’s pizzas, they add a thin layer of crust atop the cheese/under the sauce. I’m thinking I might just take a small bit of the dough and roll it out for that layer but would love to know if you have any other suggestions.

    1. Hi Susan!

      I am a born and raised Chicago native and love deep dish! This is modeled more after Lou’s classic sausage. I think if you do add the dough with that method you may want to partially cook it that way before adding other toppings or the sauce so it can crisp up since it’s not a traditional gluten-based flour. Let me know how it goes if you give it a try!


      1. I ended up adding the thin layer and cooking in a 375° oven for about 10 minutes. I didn’t need it to get crispy, just mostly cooked. Then I added the sauce and cooked for 8 more minutes. Wish I could add a picture!

        I used two six inch springform pans as I was being a stickler for making it as close as possible to an actual giordano’s pizza

  3. Hi, the serving size says 1g. Can you clarify how many servings there are in this pizza? It looks delicious!

  4. Hi, how can I substitute for the Parmesan cheese in the crust?

    I really miss this style of pizza, but can’t have dairy.

    I thought I had asked this question, but guess I didn’t.

    Thank you.

    1. The cheese unfortunately acts as a binder in the crust. I don’t have an alternative unfortunately but you can just make a sausage based crust instead? There are some version of keto friendly deep dish that do not have a crust as all. Additionally, you can search my website and just try using my keto pie crust as well. It won’t be the same per say but it is an option. 🙂

      1. Thank you for the suggestion. I don’t eat pork. I will check out your pie crusts. I’ve never thought of using a piecrust that way. Thank you very much for replying.

          1. Just curious. Isn’t ths psyllium husk fiber a bonfing agent? Could that be used instead of the Parmesan cheese. I can’t be the only one in the world who has to be dairy free. I may be the only one who doesn’t skip the recipe. I don’t think I want to do a piecrust.

            If so, what amount of psyllium husk fiber do you suggest I try?