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You won’t need a special deep-dish pizza pan to make this easy and delicious Upside-Down Deep-Dish Skillet Pizza.

Upside-Down Deep-Dish Skillet Pizza

Hi everyone – it’s Jack. I never know when and where recipe inspiration will strike – and I’m here today to tell you about the story behind this Upside-Down Deep-Dish Skillet Pizza.

I had bit of insomnia the other night after a hectic day at work, so I started channel surfing while lying in bed, hoping to get tired enough to sleep. I came across an infomercial for a frying pan (I don’t remember the brand) that claimed to be so strong you could break concrete with a sledge hammer inside the pan, and doing so would never damage it, and the pan would never stick or scratch. (The commercial was less informative than it was comical, and it just seemed too unrealistic.)


Upside-Down Deep-Dish Skillet Pizza


However, just before I was about to surf over to the next channel, they showed someone putting an upside-down pizza into the oven and then flipping it over onto a pizza pan once it was cooked. I actually liked the idea and started brainstorming ideas for pizza toppings before finally falling asleep.

And that – my friends – is where I came with this Upside-Down Deep-Dish Skillet Pizza recipe.

How do you make Upside Down Deep-Dish Skillet Pizza?

This recipe uses all of your typical homemade pizza ingredients – pizza dough (you can make your own using this recipe or use store-bought), pizza sauce (if you haven’t tried this homemade easy, no-cook pizza sauce recipe yet – you should), and your favorite toppings. We went with sweet Italian sausage, mushrooms, green bell peppers, onions, pepperoni, and three kinds of cheese (mozzarella, provolone, and Parmesan).  What can I say – I like my pizzas loaded with lots of toppings.

You’ll pre-cook the toppings – then layer them into a large oven-safe, non-stick skillet (we used this one from Calphalon). Finally, the pizza dough is placed over the toppings, you’ll brush the dough with some olive oil, and the entire thing is baked in the oven.

Upside-Down Deep-Dish Skillet Pizza

Once it’s baked through, you’ll place a pizza pan on top of the skillet – then flip the pan over so you now have a typical-looking (and delicious-looking) pizza sitting on your pizza pan. You’ll want to bake the pizza right-side-up for a few additional minutes just to crisp up the pizza crust.

Upside-Down Deep-Dish Skillet Pizza

Sprinkle on some additional cheese and dig in.


Upside-Down Deep-Dish Skillet Pizza

In the end, you’ll enjoy a deep-dish skillet pizza with a light and crispy crust and perfectly caramelized toppings. During that upside-down baking time, the crust soaks in some of the sauce and some of the juices from the sausage – giving it really outstanding flavor.

This Upside-Down Deep-Dish Skillet Pizza is so good – we made it twice in one week and devoured it! I really think you’ll love it too.

Upside-Down Deep-Dish Skillet Pizza

You may like these other pizza recipes:

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Upside-Down Deep-Dish Skillet Pizza

Upside-Down Deep-Dish Skillet Pizza

  • Author: A Family Feast
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 2 servings (1/2 pizza each)
  • Category: pizza
  • Method: baked
  • Cuisine: Italian


1 pizza dough, about 20 ounces (ours was 18.5 ounces)

5 tablespoons olive oil, divided

4 Italian sausage links, removed from casing

Pinch red pepper flakes

5 medium mushrooms, cut into ¼” thick slices

4 slices green bell pepper, cut into ¼” thick slices

2 slices onion, ¼” thick

14 pepperoni slices

4 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese, divided

½ cup shredded mozzarella cheese

5 slices provolone cheese

½ cup pizza sauce (see here)


Bring dough to room temperature.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and place rack in top position in oven (opposite of a normal pizza cooking on a stone close to the bottom)

While dough is warming up, in a large 12”-14” non-stick oven proof fry pan*(see tip), heat one tablespoon of the oil over medium heat and cook sausage and pepper flakes until the meat has browned, breaking up as it cooks. Pour into a strainer over a bowl.

Add another tablespoon of oil and cook the mushrooms until browned. Remove to a plate or bowl leaving any fat in the pan.

Add another tablespoon of oil and place the pepper rings and onion slices in and cook for two minutes then turn off burner. Remove the peppers and onion to a plate and wipe any excess oil from the pan.

With the pan off the heat, build the upside-down pizza. Start by laying out the pepper and onion rings covering the bottom. Next fill in the holes with the pepperoni slices.

On top of that spread out the mushrooms then top with the drained sausage, again spreading to the edge.

Sprinkle on two tablespoons of the Parmesan next and then the mozzarella and finally the provolone, overlapping the slices as you go around the pan.

Spread the sauce over the provolone going almost to the edge.

On your cutting board, drizzle a tablespoon of the oil and spread the dough out to be slightly larger than the bottom of the pan, building a thick edge all the way around. Lift the dough and place over the sauce, stretching to go up the sides a bit and then tucked back in so no filling pops out.

Brush the remaining oil over the top of the dough (which is actually the bottom once flipped) and place on the upper rack and bake 20-25 minutes or until slightly golden.

Remove the pan, keeping the pot holder in place over the handle. Put an upside-down pizza pan over the pan top and with one quick motion, flip the pan over so that the pizza is sitting upright on the pizza pan. Place back in the oven for 15 more minutes to crisp up the edges. (As it bakes upside down, the sauce and any fat bakes into the crust edge (yummy) and when you invert it, it is soft and spongy and needs to crisp up).

When it comes out of the oven the second time, sprinkle on the remaining two tablespoons of Parmesan cheese, cut and serve.


*We use a non-stick Calphalon pan rated oven proof to 400 degrees F.

Keywords: pizza


Upside-Down Deep-Dish Skillet Pizza

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  • Susanna wrote:

    Thank you for your informative reply Jack. Susanna.

  • Susanna wrote:

    Hi Jack, do you have or would you like to develop a similar upside down pizza but with seafood? I feel that if uncooked shrimp and salmon chunks are placed on the bottom of pan and covered with boiling sauce and dough, they would cook while the crust on top of them is baking, thus simplifying the prep. I have a small party on 4/19/21 where I’d like to serve this dish, but afraid to try it on my own. The juice released by cooking seafood, the amounts of salt and spices, the oven temp and baking time – too many unknowns for a home cook to deal with. Would love your input and possibly even an actual recipe. Thank you in advance. Susanna.

    • Jack wrote:

      Hi Susanna

      Fish takes minutes to cook and typically gives up a lot of liquid when cooked. Cooking ahead to get rid of excess liquid wouldn’t work because the fish would overcook in the pizza. Trying to put them in raw would be a soggy mess because they would give up their liquid in the pizza. In my opinion, I don’t think fish would work in this recipe. However cooked canned crab meat would work. I think everything else would be tough and overcooked.
      If this was me trying this, I would use crab meat and a white sauce instead of a tomato sauce.
      Good luck,

  • Shane wrote:

    Have you tries this in cast iron?

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Shane – We haven’t – but if yours is well-seasoned (and basically non-stick) I think it would work! Because cast iron retains heat better than non-stick, it might cook more quickly too so keep an eye on it. Please let us know how it comes out!

  • Pam Schlehahn wrote:

    Cant wait to try this delicious looking pizza!!!

    • Martha wrote:

      Hope you love it Pam!

  • Becky wrote:

    I found your recipe the same way you came up with the idea. I wanted to see if there was such a thing, and here it is. I will be trying this out. Thank you for the info.

    • Martha wrote:

      Hope you enjoy the pizza as much as we did Becky!

  • Diane wrote:

    Thank you! This is exactly what I was looking for. Motivated by the same commercial. Very glad I wasn’t the only one.

    • Martha wrote:

      You’re welcome Diane! Glad you enjoyed the recipe!

  • Lyncat wrote:

    Thank you for the recipe! I saw the same commercial and immediately started looking for a recipe. Yours looks perfect!

    • Martha wrote:

      We hope you love the pizza as much as we do!

  • Lisa R. wrote:

    Looking forward to making this pizza! I love deep dish pizzz & this is a must try recipe. I’m giving 5 stars, because I know it will be delicious! Thanks Jack & sorry ya lost sleep, but your loss my gain! Lol! 🙂

    • Jack wrote:

      Ha ha and thanks. Hope you love it. Now back to watching Ginsu knife commercials.

  • Debra Little wrote:

    Made this tonight. It was WONDERFUL! Family decided this recipe is definitely a “keeper”!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Debra! So glad the recipe was a hit!

  • Laurie S wrote:

    Oh my gosh – I have to try this soon! It looks so delicious! And easy! Jack – great anecdote on how you “conjured” up this recipe! Those late night infomercials…

    • Jack wrote:

      But wait, there’s more. If you act now, we will send you a second pan absolutely free. Just pay $80.00 for shipping and handling…Hope you enjoy the pizza and thanks for writing.

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