Foodie Tour - Best Pizza in Spokane and the Inland Northwest
Are you looking for the best pizza in Spokane? If so, you've come to the right place!
Everyone that knows me reaches out to me for food advice, and often. I guess being a moderately well-known Spokane food blogger gets you that kind of rap with your pals. But, I have a confession to make - I don’t like pizza as a general rule.
I know what you’re thinking - how can you write an article on the best pizza in Spokane, then? Well, honestly it’s because I am SO particular about how this beloved American favorite is made that my standards are unnaturally high. You’re in good hands.
Why am I not a fan of pizza? Well, in my household, both of my parents worked full-time, and we had cheap, greasy fast-food pizza more times than I can count. It was the staple because I have four younger brothers all with specific likes and dislikes, so why not just grab a giant cheese and meat disc with some bread under it? It was inexpensive, easily palatable for even the pickiest eaters, and it kept us alive when there was little to no other sustenance in our kitchen at the moment.
Fast forward to today. My husband likes pizza as much as my grown brothers and teenage children do. That means I have order it at least once a week. That also means I’m going to get something out of the ordinary as much as I possibly can. I get something for my traditionalists, and then something else wild and crazy for myself and the kids when they feel brave.
What makes the best pizza, anyway? There are a couple of points for me that are of the utmost importance when considering the quality of pizza that I’m hoping for. A wood-fired oven categorically makes the best crispy bottom crust with that nice leoparding, and top-shelf local ingredients when it comes to sauce, cheese and toppings. There is so much nuance that goes into a perfect pie, and I’ll try to outline those for you to help you feel like you understand what is expected at each of these unique eateries. If you’re looking for the classic Neapolitan wood-fired pizza, these are your new go-to spots.
The Best Pizza in Spokane and the Surrounding Area
Best Traditional Pies
Piccolo Pizza in Liberty Lake is dangerously close to my house, and I’m so glad. Their pizzas have consistently been on the very top of my list for several reasons.
Aside from being obsessed with their absolutely beautiful brick oven with gleaming tiles, I love how cozy this place is. The staff knows pretty much everyone that comes in and it has a Cheers vibe that I’m always encouraged by. That and it’s super easy to place to-go orders that you can pick up right off the freeway no matter which direction you’re going.
The unusual part? It’s in a gas station strip mall. Stay with me - it adds to the charm. For you, it means affordable prices on a premium product. Either way, you’re in for some seriously gourmet eats.
My top picks are the Ragazzone which is your more classic style - a red sauce, uncured Principe pepperoni and mozzarella, or the Bistecca which has a ricotta cream sauce, marinated steak, gorgonzola cheese, tomato, mushroom, shallots, and arugula. A truly masterful option for even the most resistant pizza consumer.
Veraci in Kendall Yards is a must-visit for the pizza lover and pizza skeptic alike. They’ll make you a believer!
Veraci makes their very own pizza oven as a “functional work of art” using a proprietary refractory clay mixture that holds heat like a champ and burns applewood that burns fast and can get up to 1000 F. After just 90 seconds, your pizza will be fully cooked and ready to eat.
According to their website, “The intense energy released from the burning applewood is transferred to the pizza three ways: through convection, conduction and radiant energy. When the pizza hits the bricks, the molecules of water in the dough turn to water vapor and escape upwards through the crust. Miniature steam vents form all over the pizza as it is transformed by the intense heat. This change of state from water to steam generates pressure and uplifts our special dough, creating a puffy, hollow, golden brown and slightly-charred, crisp and chewy outer crust (the "cornicione") and a deliciously thin, melts-in-your-mouth--- soft inner crust.”
I have always been fascinated by how great pizza is made, and even more by how it translates into a great meal. My favorite on their menu would have to be the Spicy Tony for an authentic pick, which has Italian sausage, pepperoni, mushrooms & provolone on crushed red pepper infused savory red sauce with our three cheese blend. The Brussels and Bacon is more off the beaten path, and has Seattle-made Beechers Flagship cheese, balsamic reduction and garlic olive oil.
Peace Pie Pizzeria is a classic New York style pizza place that prides itself on a perfect dough, house-made sauces and responsibly-sourced ingredients, right down to the flour.
Being across the street from Main Market in Saranac Commons, they have access to all kinds of unique and locally farmed ingredients and frequently have collaborations with area restaurants like adding meatballs from Hogwash Whiskey Den to their special pie of the day.
I live for a flavorful crust, and here they nail the craft as well as the art of making a memorable dough. You also can't miss the garlic knots - trust me. My favorite classic pizza here is the Margherita with signature house-made dough, red sauce, fresh mozzarella, basil, and olive oil. It's even better when paired with a beer from Black Label Brewing Company right next door, or have their brunch specials with a mimosa flight on the weekends.
South Perry Pizza has some of the most affordable artisan pizza in town, and is in the heart of the charming Perry District (where my husband’s family once had their auto shop in the building that is now The Shop, a sweet cafe). I have a special spot in my heart for this neighborhood, and this pizza.
I favor their Brooklyn, which has a piquant red sauce, local Casa Cano Farms sausage, mozzarella, parmesan, peppadew peppers, red pepper flake, olive oil and a balsamic drizzle, and my husband is in love with the simple perfection of the Prosciutto pie, which has thinly sliced prosciutto ham, mascarpone, mozzarella, arugula and cherry tomatoes.
The bonus - a Cheers-like atmosphere where everyone knows everyone and the laughter trails down the street. You can smell this place a mile away, and it carries you right through the door like a cartoon character. They also have gluten free options, 7” lunch pizzas until 4pm, happy hour from 3-5, and a season pass punch card that will save you some dough.
Best Unique Eats
Embers by the Lake has some completely crazy topping combinations that I just can’t get enough of. They have a thick, doughy crust that makes every bite feel decadent, and can stand up to the gooey goodness they slather on top.
The “Honey I’m Home” is a somewhat more traditional option with prosciutto, fresh mozzarella, arugula and a chili-infused honey drizzle to make it really stand out. A more unusual option is the “Keep Clam and Carry On” which has (you guessed it) sauteed clams, olive oil, bacon, shaved parmesan and jalapeno for bite.
Even more out there - our top selection every time is the “Dilly Dilly”. It is essentially a pickle pizza. Bear with me. I know it sounds insane. But seriously, it’s the most unexpectedly yummy item on the entire menu. The tang of the sliced pickles, creamy garlic sauce, and stretchy cheese blend - it’s a must-try if you are a pickle lover.
One of the most charming aspects of heading out to this spot is its location overlooking Hauser Lake and the outdoor play area for kids. They even have the option to purchase a s’more kit for a few dollars that you can roast right over the fire and enjoy year-round as long as weather allows. It’s a great place for a sweet, casual family gathering.