I am a mass consumer of pizza. In my household, we probably consume two or three pizza or pizza-like substances a week at bare minimum. I think because my wife and I both work retail and she goes to school full time, our food options tend to lean toward the easy and the take out. I have always been a pizza lover and over the years have developed into a pizza snob. I will tend to eat anything on a pizza but I definitely have my favorites.
The most important aspect of a good pizza is the cheese. Without it, you basically have sauce and bread. Extra cheese on a pizza can be a nice addition sometimes. The ooey gooey melty-ness provides the binder to the whole pie. It really ties the pizza together.
The best meat you can have on a pizza. If you can get a good sausage, the pizza improves 100 fold. I have always preferred this suspect meat product to the basic pepperoni. In school, sausage pizza day was my favorite. I know it wasn’t really sausage, but those little brown balls of deliciousness were something I looked forward to. Sausage also pairs really well with most non-meat toppings.
I debated ranking it lower on the list, but pepperoni tends to be the basic one topping pizza besides cheese. It is the mass market ingredient of pizza. There is a reason most places that serve slices always have pepperoni on stand by. I think its because Big Pepperoni has consistently paid off pizza places to use their ingredients over sausage.
The fungi provide a nice meaty alternative on a pizza and pair really well with pretty much any other ingredient you can get on your pie. Most mushrooms tend to be like tofu, flavorless, but great for absorbing surrounding flavors. With the right combo of spices and the tomato sauce, mushrooms get super flavorful.
Like on hamburgers, onions on pizza add a bit of texture and bite that adds a level of flavor. Red onions tend to be the best ones to use and most pizza places now use them. Even Domino’s does.
Much like mushrooms, olives are waiting to take on the flavors around them. Their pickled nature though adds just a bit of salty sweetness that makes them perfect to be paired with a mushroom, or a sausage, or even a pepperoni. I really love olives and tend to get extra olives on everything.
7. Red Peppers
Green peppers tend to be the default pepper on a pizza, but red peppers actually contain more flavor and don’t taste like water. I will jump at a chance to get red peppers on a pizza if it is an option.
I am sure I have lost you by now. Pineapple tends to be very divisive. I just really love my Canadian bacon/pineapple pizza. It’s really damn good. Pineapple also pairs well with sausage. Actually anything that could use a little sweet and pineapple can go with.
Bacon is a great second meat but I would never really order it as the main or only meat on a pizza. It doesn’t have the gravitas to hold a good pie together.
10. Canadian Bacon
Really, only use when ordering pineapple. Otherwise ham is super boring.
11. Sun-Dried Tomatoes
A newer addition to the pizza oeuvre, a good veggie pizza will tend to have sun dried tomatoes on it. I find it a bit too acidic because the sauce is also tomatoey. I am not a tomato person so that is probably why. I know a lot of people swear by them.
12. Green Peppers
Not as good as the red pepper.
Really only good on a veggie pizza or if you are getting some sort of white sauce pizza. I like white sauce pizzas, but to me that feels a bit non traditional. I love spinach, but I prefer it in my salad than on my pizza.
Chicken on a pizza? Exactly. Most of the time it’s when you get something like a thai chicken pizza or a chicken spinach white sauce pizza. It just seems to be not the best ingredient for a great pie experience.
The Worst: Anchovies
I like anchovies but they are really fucking salty. I think I am going to love eating them. Take one bite and I regret it.. Every. Single. Time.
I know there are plenty of other ingredients I am missing. Tell me your favorite pizza ingredients and places. I want to know where I should eat in every city!