Here’s an undeniable fact:
Minneapolis rocks some awesome pizza.
Maybe it’s our location next to all that delicious Wisconsin cheese, mixed with one of the best foodie cultures in the country.
Whatever the case, there’s just one problem. Sometimes all that cheesy goodness can lead to paralysis by analysis!
We don’t want anyone going hungry when there’s so much great pizza to be had. So, for your convenience, here’s our local’s picks for the best pizza in Minneapolis. (Organized by what you’re in the mood for, so you’re sure to get your perfect slice…)
- Best fancy pizza: Pizzeria Lola (Southwest Minneapolis)
- Best award winning pizza: Young Joni (Northeast)
- Best thin crust pizza, NYC style: Hello Pizza (Edina)
- Favorite pizza to eat with your beer: Surly Pizza Upstairs (University)
- The neighborhood spot: Element Wood Fire Pizza (Northeast)
- Most Unique Pizza: Boludo
- Best crust: Mucci’s Italian (Uptown)
- Best drunk pizza: Mesa Pizza (Dinkytown)
- Best “chain” pizza: Punch Neapolitan Pizza
- The new challenger: Red Wagon Pizza Company (South Minneapolis)
- The surprise pizza: Red Rabbit (North Loop)
- Best of the ‘burbs: Pig Ate My Pizza (Robinsdale)
Best fancy pizza: Pizzeria Lola (Southwest Minneapolis)
At this point, it’s probably fair to crown Ann Kim as The Twin Cities Pizza Queen. She owns three different pizza shops around town, all worthy of being on this list for one reason or another.
The original of those three is Pizzeria Lola. Opened in 2006, Pizzeria Lola took the Twin Cities pizza scene by storm with its creative takes on wood-fired pizza.
Nothing symbolizes that effort more perfectly than the Korean BBQ pizza. It’s an unusual yet fantastic combination of beef short ribs, scallions, and a soy chili sauce. Similarly, there’s the Lady Zaza that blew Guy Fieri away during his Diner’s, Drive-Ins, and Dives visit. Definitely a must-try on a menu that’s packed with delicious choices.
- Address: 5557 Xerxes Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55410
- Website: Pizzeria Lola
Best award winning pizza: Young Joni (Northeast)
While Pizzeria Lola is the original, it’s Ann Kim’s Young Joni that won her the prestigious James Beard award for Best Chef in the Midwest.
That’s big praise, and thankfully, the food absolutely lives up to the hype.
At Young Joni, you’ll find the same awesome pizza menu at Pizzeria Lola, but with addition of a ton of fantastic entrees and side dishes like New Caledonia prawns, Chicken Wings, and of course, Korean Beef Short Ribs. (Surprisingly, our personal favorite is the Cauliflower vegetable plate though. It’s absolutely to die for…)
Oh, and it certainly doesn’t hurt that Young Joni also features one of the best cocktail menus in the Twin Cities, complete with a secret speakeasy in the back.
- Address: 165 13th Ave NE, Minneapolis, MN 55413
- Website: Young Joni
Best thin crust pizza, NYC style: Hello Pizza (Edina)
Oh hey, it’s Ann Kim again. When she’s not busy revolutionizing the pizza scene with Pizzeria Lola, or winning awards with Young Joni, she’s serving up our vote for the Twin Cities’ best New York Style Pizza at Hello Pizza.
Although technically a suburb of Minneapolis, this Edina hot-spot is worth making the drive. Here, Ann Kim goes back to her days living in a New York apartment, and the result is her take on perfect, wood-fired, New York style pizza.
In true NYC fashion, its available either by the slice or the pie.
- Address: 3904 Sunnyside Road, Edina, MN 55424
- Website: Hello Pizza
Favorite pizza to eat with your beer: Surly Pizza Upstairs (University)
Beer and pizza, what could be better?
It turns out, there’s one thing…
Surly Beer, with Surly Pizza.
In 2018, residents all over the cities were hyped to hear that Minneapolis’s most famous brewery was opening a new pizza restaurant above the taproom. Shortly thereafter, residents were even more hyped when they realized that pizza is as legit as it gets. (In its first year after opening, Surly Pizza Upstairs won Best Pizza in Minnapolis from local magazine CityPages.)
So grab pint of Surly Furious and order up a 12 incher, because you’re about to enjoy one of life’s greatest harmonies. Cheers!
- Address: 502 Malcom Ave SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414
- Website: Surly Pizza Upstairs
The neighborhood spot: Element Wood Fire Pizza (Northeast)
Minneapolis’s Northeast neighborhood is known for its artsy culture and delicious food, and Element Wood Fire Pizza exemplifies that better than anywhere else.
At Element, you’ll find a small building with a big oven. Thankfully, that oven turns out amazing pizzas as fast as the hungry neighborhood can order them.
What we especially love about Element is that despite the thin crust and fast cooking time, their pizzas come loaded with the cheese. Us Minnesotans wouldn’t have it any other way…
- Address: 96 Broadway St NE, Minneapolis, MN 55413
- Website: Element Wood Fire Pizza
Most Unique Pizza: Boludo
Put simply: Boludo pizza is out of this world.
It’s out of this country, at least. Boludo is traditionally a Argentinian restaurant, but they decided to branch our from their amazing empanadas and craft up a Buenos Aires inspired pizza.
What’s a pizza from Buenos Aires taste like? Unbelievable, apparently.
We here are DTC aren’t exactly chefs and we’re far from true food critics, so we all collectively struggled to pinpoint exactly what makes Boludo’s pizza stand so far above the rest. Perfect crust and perfect cheese are the obvious choices, but there’s definitely something else… some kind of special seasoning that none of us could put our fingers on, nor could we stop eating it.
We won’t even embarrass ourselves trying to guess any further, although a quick bit of research makes us think Maldon sea salt might be a contributor. Either way, you’ve gotta try this pizza. It’s absolutely some of the most unique and most incredible pizza in the Twin Cities.
- Address 1: 3749 Nicolett Ave Minneapolis, MN 55409
- Address 2: 530 S 4th St, Minneapolis, MN, 55415
- Website: Boludo
Best crust: Mucci’s Italian (Uptown)
At Mucci’s, the Saint Paul favorite has expanded beyond its neighborhood roots with a new location in the heart of Uptown, Minneapolis. For any unsuspecting Uptown’ers, we’ve got just two very important words for you:
Hidden within layers of delicious lasagna and pasta dishes at Mucci’s lies one of the most unique pizza’s you’ll ever find. Here, pizzas are ramped up even higher through the chef’s strategic frying of the pizza crust.
Yes, you read that right.
The effect is a little more subtle than the description might imply, and what you’re left is a perfectly crunchy crust on a pizza that’s packed with the same high quality ingredients you’ll find on the rest of Mucci’s award winning menu.
You’ve gotta give it a shot. If you can pull yourself away from Mucci’s delicious pasta dishes, that is.
- Address: 901 W Lake St, Minneapolis, MN 55408
- Website: Mucci’s Italian
Best drunk pizza: Mesa Pizza (Dinkytown)
If you haven’t finished a night with a slice of some wild pizza concoction that only a drunken 2 AM pizza patron can imagine, we’ll then you’re either not from here or you’ve got some catching up to do.
- Macaroni and Cheese Pizza? Check.
- Gyro Pizza? Yep.
- Philly Cheesesteak Pizza? Only at Mesa…
Maybe the most surprisingly part about Mesa Pizza is that, if you ever do happen to make it here sober, you’ll realize all those drunken pizza combinations are actually really, really good! And that’s not just the alcohol talking…
- Address: 1323 4th St SE, Minneapolis MN 55414
- Website: Mesa Pizza
Best “chain” pizza: Punch Neapolitan Pizza
Sometimes the big guys do it right, and that’s the case for Minneapolis sweetheart Punch Neapolitan Pizza.
Originally founded by Italian immigrant John Sorrano in 1996, Punch has since exploded throughout the Twin Cities. Today, there’s roughly a dozen different locations.
Thankfully, Punch hasn’t lost a bit of the authentic charm locals first fell in love with. Despite the expansion, Punch is still churning out some of the cities’ best wood-fired pizza, with authentic ingredients like their mozzarella di buffalo. (A special type of cheese made from Italian water buffalo that’s actually more nutritious than cow’s milk… We’ll have another slice please!)
- Address: Multiple locations around The Cities
- Website: Punch Neapolitan Pizza
The new challenger: Red Wagon Pizza Company (South Minneapolis)
Born from humble beginnings at the Linden Hills Farmer’s market, it wasn’t long before Peter Campbell realized his passion project was developing a serious following. Eventually, he traded in the tiny farmer’s market tent for a beautiful brick-and-mortar space just one mile down the road, and Red Wagon Pizza Company was on the map for good.
With a little help in menu development from chef de cuisine Sean Little of Travail fame – yes, that Travail – it wasn’t long before the signature Red Wagon Pizza was wow’ing critics all over the Twin Cities. With crispy soppressata ribbons, sausage, and peppers, we can confirm this spicy meat lovers is as good as it gets!
The hype eventually led Red Wagon to become the second Minneapolis pizza joint to be featured on Food Network’s Diner’s, Drive-Ins, and Dives, right after Pizzeria Lola. Good company to be in as far as we’re concerned, which is just one of the reasons we’re including it on our list of best pizza spots in Minneapolis!
- Address: 5416 Penn Ave. S, Minneapolis, MN
- Website: Red Wagon Pizza Company
The surprise pizza: Red Rabbit (North Loop)
With a menu packed full of delicious Italian classics like Chicken Parmesan, pappardelle bolognese, and fettucine alfredo, it’s not all that surprising that Red Rabbit rocks some of the best pizza in the cities.
What is surprising is the types of pizzas that stand out in this otherwise classic menu. We’re huge fans of the PBJ pizza (that’s pineapple, bacon, and jalapeno) and breakfast pizza (topped with a runny egg, because why not?)
- Address: 201 N Washington Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55401
- Website: Red Rabbit
Best of the ‘burbs: Pig Ate My Pizza (Robinsdale)
Around the Twin Cities, Pig Ate My Pizza (PAMP) is legendary.
Is it because this was the concept that gave birth to Travail, perhaps the most legendary dining experience in the cities? Is it because Pig Ate My Pizza piggy backs (ba-dum-tss!) off Travail’s cocktail menu, for the perfect pairing with your pie? Or that Travail’s chefs have now started brewing their own beer to strategically mix right with the pizza? Or that those chefs will most likely be drinking right alongside the crowded bar patrons?
It’s hard to say. But what’s easy to say is that it all results in the coolest pizza experience in the cities.
- Address: 4124 W Broadway Ave, Robinsdale, MN 55422
- Website: Pig Ate My Pizza