Pizza used to have toppings of tomato sauce, cheese, and basil leaves when it was becoming a common dish in Naples and the surrounding Italian cities in the 18th century.
But over time, as it transformed into a staple dish of not only Italy but America and soon of the whole world, the recipes started to include a variety of toppings of meat, fish, seafood, fruits, and vegetables.
Here we will discuss the 10 most popular types of toppings that are found in America and all across the world because Pizza truly has achieved the status of a global food phenomenon.
10 Types of Pizza Toppings
Pizza does not have any mandatory toppings other than tomato sauce and cheese which means one has the freedom to add whatever topping he wishes. The choice of toppings will depend on the taste preference, the recipe you are following, and the availability of ingredients.
Pepperoni is by far the most popular toppings for pizza. Pepperoni is traditionally made from dried, cured, and spiced beef and pork meat. Pepperoni Pizza is one of the most common pizzas available not just in America but all around the globe.
Pepperoni also compliments the flavor of the baked dough, tomato sauce, and cheese very well with its mildly spicy and meaty flavor. Pepperoni is also easily spreadable on the pizza. The only downside of pepperoni is that it releases a ton of grease as it gets cooked in the oven and you might need to use a paper towel to soak the excess fat if you wish to dine healthier.
Sausage is also a very common topping for pizza and has been used forever since the inception of this tasty dish. Various types of sausages can be used on the pizza depending on the recipe and taste.
The most popular type of sausage that is used on pizza frequently is the Hot Italian Sausage. Hot Italian Sausage includes different herbs, hot pepper flakes, chili, and paprika. Use more mild flavored sausages if the heat is too much to handle such as the Mild Italian Sausage. Mexican-style Chorizo sausage makes the pizza taste extra spicy and flavorful.
Everyone loves some crispy bacon on top of their pizza. Although not the most common topping found all around the world as pork is not as popular, Bacon makes a great option as a topping on pizza. Bacon can be added while making the pizza and the heat will bake the meat to a delicious crisp.
Mushrooms make a great substitute for meat on pizzas as they have a very distinguishable umami flavor and the texture of meat. Mushrooms, although categorized as vegetables have more in common with animals than they have with plants.
Button mushrooms are the most popular type of mushrooms used on pizzas as they cook very easily but other mushrooms like oyster, shitake, portabella, cremini, and morel mushrooms also go well with pizza.
5. Extra Cheese
Cheese has been used as pizza toppings ever since its inception in Italy. The original cheese used in Naples was Mozzarella Cheese and still to this day, Mozzarella Cheese remains the most popular Cheese for Pizza.
But you can also use other cheese on the pizza. You can use Cheddar, Aged Havarti, Gorgonzola, Provolone, Gote Cheese, Pecorino-Romano, and various other cheeses as extra toppings when you are baking a delicious pie.
Onions also make great toppings for all types of pizza. Sliced onions get baked and caramelized which turns them sweet. This sweetness perfectly balances out the spice of the meat and the sauce. You can use sliced or minced onions to spread on your pizza before baking or use large onion rings in a decorative style.
7. Black Olives
Black Olives are not merely added as decoration to pizzas as toppings but also because they add salty and earthy flavor to the pizza that goes well with the dough, sauce, and cheese. Black Olives are added to balance acidity and give it a finer texture. This is why Black Olives are one of the most popular toppings on a pizza.
8. Green and Red Peppers
Green and Red Peppers also make great toppings on pizzas. Not only do Peppers make the pizza more appealing to look at because of their vibrant colors, but they also bring a sweet flavor to the pizza that balances out the spices and the cheese. Remember to take out all of the seeds from the inside and slice them thinly before spreading them on the pizza to enhance the flavor.
Ham is not the most popular topping for pizzas but pizzas that consist of Ham taste very flavorful. Balancing the salty taste of the ham is the most important aspect of using ham as topping on a pizza. Use cheese that contains less salt than usual. Other ingredients that go fine with ham are mushrooms, artichokes, and olives.
Pineapple on pizza can be quite a controversial choice for some people as most do not like the sweetness of the fruit to go with the pizza. But the Hawaiian pizza combines the sweetness of pineapple with the saltiness of cheese perfectly to create an amazingly delicious dish.