The Quod – A Modern Take on Deep Dish Pizza

There is a style of Chicago Pan Pizza that is distinct from the Original Deep Dish that you know from places like Lou Malnati’s, Pizano’s, Louisa’s, Gino’s East, and Pizzeria Uno.

The style I’m talking about is the pan pizza you find at Pequod’s in Chicago and Morton Grove, IL, and until recently*, Burt’s Place in Morton Grove.

*UPDATE – Burt’s was closed in 2015, but has been reopened under new management in 2017.*

I call this style “Modern Deep Dish” to distinguish it from “Original Deep Dish”.
Before you ask… Yes, a pizza style invented over 4 decades ago (1971) is considered relatively “modern” since Original Chicago Deep Dish was invented more than 70 years ago in 1943.
For brevity (and because it is fun to say), we can just call it…

The ‘Quod.

(Officially Unofficial Chicago Pizza Style #4)



This style of pizza is like a hybrid between Chicago Deep Dish, Detroit Style & NY Sicilian pan pizzas. Like a deep dish, the pizza has cheese on the bottom, sauce on the top, and is baked in a round pan. Like the Detroit style (and also Sicilian squares – like L&B Spumoni Gardens), it has a thicker, more pillowy dough, and a caramelized crust, which is created when the cheese runs down the gap between the pan and the outer edge of the pizza dough during baking.

The ‘Quod was invented by Burt Katz, the original owner of…

Pequod’s –

Pequod's Pizza - Chicago - photo by Edward Heller

Pequod’s was opened Morton Grove, IL by career pizza purveyor Burt Katz in 1971.
Burt sold Pequod’s in the mid 1980’s to Keith Jackson, who would later open a second location in Chicago in the early 90’s. Before the second location of Pequod’s opened, Burt got back into the pizza game in the late 80’s, when he opened up Burt’s Place across the street from the original Pequod’s in Morton Grove.

** 5-1-2016 UPDATE – Burt Katz has passed away.
We are fortunate to have his last interview in late April 2016 from the CHEWING podcast:


Is there a difference between the pizzas from Pequod’s and the pies that Burt was serving up?

Yes, but not much. It seems that the main difference is that Burt took more time and care to balance all the ingredients of his pizzas, while Pequod’s had, out of necessity (and popularity), turned into a bit of a pizza production house, tweaking the recipe along the way with a sweeter sauce.
Check out this great account from LTHF Forum member Josephine who, along with fellow LTHF member Cathy2, visited both locations in Morton Grove for their own personal pizza throw-down. There is a well documented evaluation of Burt’s and Pequod’s in her post, and I highly recommend reading it after you finish reading this.


The ‘Quod is assembled in relatively the same way as Original Deep Dish – dough on bottom, then the cheese, then the sauce. Other topping locations vary.
There are a few distinct differences.

The first difference is the dough.
Pequod’s has a thicker, pillowy raised crust, resembling something closer to a square Detroit or Sicilian style crust (think L&B Spumoni Gardens), but instead of a big rectangular pan, it is baked in a round deep dish pan.
This dough has been kneaded longer than a traditional deep dish dough and has more in common with basic pizza dough or Chicago Thin Crust dough.

The second difference, and unique to this style of Chicago pizza, is the caramelized cheese on the outer crust.
This is created by draping cheese all the way up the edges of the pizza pan (see photo below), which melts down into the outer edge of the dough, along with some of the sauce during baking and chars to perfection. This characteristic will either make you love or hate this pizza, depending on your tastebuds.

pequod delicate cheese procedure

Quiet now! I need complete, total silence otherwise I’m not gonna be able to execute this here… cheese… procedure. – Meatwad

Want to try making this style at home?
Download the recipe at the link below the food porn.


The Dough goes down first! THEN, you put down the cheese!
In that photo up there, it may have been difficult to tell, but there IS dough under that cheese.
Don’t press the dough all the way to the edge of the pan.
Leave a little gap for the cheese and sauce to do it’s magic on the outer edge.

Spread the sauce out over the top of the cheese, as far to the edge as you can without going all the way up the side. The amount of sauce will depend on how much water is in your sauce, so just use enough to cover the cheese without drowning it.

PRACTICE. This style is not for beginners, but if you are one, give it a try! If it doesn’t come out perfect the first time, it will probably still taste good. Then make adjustments for your ingredient amounts, oven temp and baking time… and try again!

2012-08-24-PREquod pequod




Hey look! A Non-Traditional Chicago Style Modern Deep Dish Pizza Recipe!

The Quod – A Pequod’s / Burt’s Chicago Style Pizza Recipe

If you are familiar with the Chicago Thin Crust Dough Recipe from this website, you’ll notice that the dough recipes will be very similar. It’s practically the same dough, except you’re using the same amount for a 12″ round ‘Quod pan pizza as you would for a 14 to 16 inch Chicago Thin Crust pizza.

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14 comments on “The Quod – A Modern Take on Deep Dish Pizza
  1. Avatar Alan says:

    I am excited to try that Quod recipe soon. What really attracts me is that charred cheese/crust on the outside. That is my favorite aspect of Sicilian pizzas (at least the ones I like), and it can be elusive to achieve!

  2. Avatar Pete S. says:

    Great site!! I’ve been trying to replicate a Pequod’s Pizza and I thought I was doing well, but I say a comment from you above regarding the crust that states, “Yes, you can use deep dish dough for thin crust. I think Lou Malnati’s does that. However, I would not recommend using deep dish dough for a ‘Quod style pizza.”

    I’ve been using the your deep dish dough recipe for my Pequod’s replica. How should the deep dish dough recipe be modified to more closely align with a Pequod’s crust?

    Again, thanks for a great site and passing on what you have learned. Highly appreciated!

    • realdeep realdeep says:

      Hi, Pete. Yeah, you’ll have better luck with a dough that can stretch, and deep dish dough typically doesn’t have enough gluten development because you’re not kneading it as long as you would a regular or thin crust dough. The Quick Dough recipe on the website can work if you go with the thin crust version and knead it for at least 5 min. Then after the first 1-2 hours of rising, punch it down and let it get a second rise in the pizza pan while you preheat your oven.
      Thanks for visiting!

      • Avatar Pete S. says:

        Thank you!

        I actually went to Pequod,s for the first time in February 2019. I finally got compare the original to what I had been making. Truth be told, I’m pretty spot. Pequod’s uses more sauce and in general, the toppings are a bit more done. Both are easy to correct. I’m still working on the sauce and the flavor profile I want. My wife ad kids love it, but not as often as I like to make it.

  3. Avatar BRM's mom says:

    My daughter had her husbands wedding band engraved with, “I ♥ U 1M Pequods”

  4. Avatar Frankie Viccari says:

    Wow, i am really going to try this. You can get Lou Malnati’s pizza shipped to your door, but Pequad’s does not offer that. Though my brother had the freeze a half cooked and brought it home to pa.
    Pequad’s is the best, that crust is amazing. Wow i am so far away down here in Atlanta.
    Gonna have it try this,
    Frankie V.

  5. Avatar terry says:

    can you use the deep dish dough and just make a regular flat pizza?

    • realdeep realdeep says:

      Yes, you can use deep dish dough for thin crust. I think Lou Malnati’s does that. However, I would not recommend using deep dish dough for a ‘Quod style pizza.

  6. Avatar Terry says:

    Didn’t Burt Katz also start Gulliver’s on (2727) Howard Street? And is that pizza close to Pequod’s?
    Long time fan of Gulliver’s.

  7. Avatar Murray Gordon says:

    We bought a cast iron skillet to make a Pequods pizza. We cooked it about 30 minutes. The crust came out almost prefect but the rest came out a bit soggy, Probably too much sausage and/or onion and/or sauce but the taste was good. What did we do wrong and how can we improve on the baked method

    • realdeep realdeep says:

      This style will take practice to get the right balance between charred outer crust and properly baked center. Cast iron skillets are not really the ideal pan for a deep dish pizza. You should try using a deep dish pizza pan or heavy duty cake pan.
      I don’t know how large your pan was or what temperature you baked at, but it sounds like you baked at too high a temperature with not enough time.

    • Avatar Paul Cortes says:

      I use a 15\” Lodge cast iron pan, too. I put the pan on the very lowest rack for the first 10 minutes to give the crust a jump start. The next 20 minutes or so are on the middle rack.

  8. Avatar ryan says:

    Thanks for the great recipe. Pequod’s was my all time favorite when I lived near there. I tried the receipe last night and my crust was a little too spongy/wet, if that makes sense. Any tips? The cheese and your sauce recipe were perfect, though. Is it as simple as leaving it in longer? I did your oven mod and cooked at 460 for 40 mins and the crust looked carmelized. I couldn’t find the cheese sliced, so I had to cut myself and I’m wondering if I cut it too thick and it somehow interfered with the crust’s cooking. Maybe I used the wrong flour? It tasted kind of floury and was pretty sticky after resting two hours. I just used pillsbury flour. Any tips would be much appreciated as I want to master this since I live out of state now.

    • realdeep realdeep says:

      Thanks for visiting
      The ‘Quod takes a lot of practice. Sometimes 5 or 10 more minutes of baking will do the trick. If your dough is too sticky or wet, you can try dusting it with a little flour before you press it out, or go a little lighter on the water when you make the dough. I like to use Heckers/Ceresota all purpose flour when I make pizzas – it’s a bit higher in protein than most AP flours, but Pillsbury should work fine.

      If your pizza came out soggy, then you probably have to cut back on the watery ingredients.
      What kind of cheese did you use? Don’t use fresh mozz. Low moisture will work better. Whole Milk mozzarella is best if you can find it. Those 1 lb packages of Frigo mozzarella that a lot of grocery chains sell in their cheese aisle work well.
      Did you use too much sauce? This is probably the biggest variable. If too much sauce runs out down the edge, it can make the outer edge soggy.

      Also, did you preheat your oven? Did you use a pizza stone?

      Check out the other articles on the site. There’s a lot of troubleshooting advice that may help.

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