Naples, Italy - Neopolitan
Neopolitan style pizza stands as the original of what most people think of when pizza comes to mind. Traditionally thin crusts are typically layered with San Marzano tomatoes and mozzarella cheese. To top it off, a few basil leaves are added to complete a color scheme similar to the Italian flag.
Hungary - Langos
Langos are sure to leave you anything but hungry. Generous helpings of sour cream, meat, and/or garlic butter are layered atop a piece of deep fried flat bread, leaving your stomach nothing to be desired. The style proves to be popular with Hungarians as well as neighboring countries such as the Czech Republic and Slovakia, where it is typically offered as street food.
Rome, Italy - Pizza Bianca
"White pizza" is renowned amongst locals and travelers alike. Offered in most all of the many pizzerias in Rome, this variety strips down the Neopolitan to the bare essentials, Italian style. Sparing even the most traditional of toppings, cheese and tomato sauce, Southern Italians are able to enjoy the rich quality of fresh olive oil and locally sourced coarse salt baked into a thin slide of dough. While it is sliced traditionally before serving, many Italian varieties are typically sold by weight instead of by slice.
New York, New York - New York Style
New Yorkers needed more from the Italian classic Neopolitan. America's most recognizable pizza was crafted at the first US pizzeria, known as Lombardis, which opened in New York's Little Italy in 1905. Before long, most of New York could easily enjoy the thin, crispy crust that is hand tossed, coal fired, and topped with light tomato sauce, mozzarella cheese, and classic thin sliced pepperoni.
Chicago, Illinois - Deep Dish
Perhaps the easiest variety of pizza to spot is the heavily crusted, thick Chicago variety known as deep dish. Baked in a large pan, a single pizza crust can rise three inches high around the edges. The space left within the pan is filled with a thick layering of chunky tomato sauce and multiple layers of toppings and cheese. Three of the most famous establishments with this offering include Gino's, Lou Malnati's, and Unos.
St. Louis, Missouri - St. Louis Style
This ultra-thin crust pizza, typically called "cheese on a cracker" by folks outside of the St. Louis area, has a whole lot of hometown personality. Invented by a tile layer named Ed Imo, the pizza crust is made without yeast and is topped with a variety of cheese called Provel (a mix of provelone, swiss, and white cheddar cheeses), before being layered with a normally large amount of toppings. The cracker like crust is resilient, allowing for a heavy base of toppings but it cannot be folded easily, so it is typically "tavern cut" into small squares before serving.
Turkey - Lahmacun
Although there is somewhat of a debate over the lahmacun's country of origin, Turkish and Armenian people both enjoy this savory, pizza-resembling snack. The name lahmacun loosely translates to "meat and dough", and is essentially just that simple. A layer of minced beef or lamb tops a piece of baked dough, while onion, herbs, and tomatoes serve as typical mix-ins.
Georgia - Khachapuri
This traditional Georgian dish combines the looks of a calzone with the protein rich center of an egg sandwich—but it doesn't stop there. The dough is oftened stuffed with Georgian cheese called sulguni, then topped with an egg and a generous dollop of butter. Some US restaurants are known to use an entire stick of butter. The rich treat is incredibly filling for its relatively small size, and does not include any tomato sauce.
Japan - Okonomiyaki
Japan's variety of pizza-like snack is barely reminiscent of its distant Italian cousin. The recipe varies dependent on region, but Okonomiyake usually includes cabbage, pork, noodles, and squid. The toppings are layered or mixed and then fried with batter. After baking, it is topped with an egg and okonomiyake sauce, which resembles a sweetened Worcestershire sauce. In Hiroshima, the meal is so popular there is an entire theme park based around it.
France - Tarte Flambee
The French sure know how to appeal to Americans with their mainstay pizza-like dish. Originally reciped in the Alsace region, tarte flambee tops its thin crust with fromage blanc or crème fraiche with lardons and onions before final prep for the wood fire oven. The two main ingredients, bacon and cheese, are added last, and in traditionally copious amounts. Finish your dinner slices to munch on the dessert version with apples, cinnamon, and sweet liquer. Now that’s a meal.
Spain - Coca
Popular in the Catalonia region of Spain, this pizza is served in both sweet and savory varieties. Both varieties are also served in open faced and closed styles with a pastry base, and can closely resemble actual pies when finished in the oven. Ingredients include egg, fish, vegetables, fruit, meat, and cheese, but vary widely based on chef's choice.
Lebanon - Manakish
If you are one to store cold pizza in the fridge as breakfast then the Labanese may be able to help you out. Manakish, a typical morning option, is composed of dough and a spicy mixture containing thyme, sesame seeds, and sumac called za'atar. Prior to baking, cheese or meat can be added based on taste preference.
Sicily, Italy - Sfincione
Sicily reinvented the wheel design with the first square shaped pizza, called Sifincione. Aside the looks, the pizza is simple and essential with its ingredients: a light dusting of cheese, olive oil, and breadcrumbs atop a thin baked crust. In America, the popular look was doubled up with thicker crust more generous helpings of cheese and sauce.
Brazil - Pizza With Hearts of Palm
Taking the Italian Neopolitan pizza for a Brazilian twist involves a series of topping varieties. On top of a thick layer of cheese is a generous layer of shredded ham as well as corn, green peas, and local hearts of palm.
Republic of Macedonia - Pastrmalija
Mixing the oblong look of a French baguette or American hotdog bun, the Macedonian Pastrmalija is an oval shaped bread pie made with a light drizzling of oil. Topped with meat and peppers, the ergonomically functional pizza-esque dish is baked and served warm.
Middle East - Sfiha
The pizza-like sfiha is a savory mix between a meat and pizza pie. Baked and served open faced, it's dough is topped with ground lamb, local vegetables and is lightly spiced.
India - Partatha
Indian parathas are typically made with whole wheat dough and are stuffed with a large variety of vegetables including boiled potatoes, cauliflower, paneer, and leafy greens. Similar to pizza in shape and size, the prepared dough is baked in the oven until golden crispy brown.
China - Scallion Pancake
While the name and preparation techniques resemble those of a pancake, many believe that the inspiration for pizza came from Marco Polo's first encounter with this Chinese variety. Dough and filling are traditionally mixed vegetables before baking in the oven.