What Doesn’t Belong on a Pizza?

I am somewhat of a pizza purist. I enjoy few, simple ingredients rather than giant, messy, savory explosions of flavor and gimmick pizzas. I don’t need pizza inspired by cheeseburgers, taco salads or hot wings (I’m lookin’ at you, Minsky’s). I don’t need tater tots on top either.

Japanese half & half Pizza

The pizza shown in the pictures is half & half pizza from Pizza-LA. It’s medium sized and about 2,300 yen (25 US dollars). The left half is Teriyaki Chicken and the right half is Shrimp Mayonnaise. Photo by Akira on Flickr.

Jesus, apparently at Waldo Pizza you can get burnt ends, fake crab meat and spam as pizza toppings. Who orders this stuff and why isn’t anyone enforcing good pizza-ordering behavior?

Alright, I know it’s a free country but just for giggles, here’s my list of stuff that doesn’t belong on pizza. This is not crazy stuff, but ingredients that you frequently see on toppings lists and specialty pizzas. This was inspired by an online conversation a while back with Karen Geary, operator of Le Petit Rouge and chef extraordinaire.

Stuff that doesn’t belong on pizza:

  • Chicken, turkey or poultry of any kind
  • Broccoli
  • Shrimp or really any kind of seafood
  • Potatoes
  • Mayonnaise
  • Anything that is “blackened” or cooked “Cajun-style”
  • Provel cheese
  • Eggs (hat tip to Bull E. Vard)


11 responses to “What Doesn’t Belong on a Pizza?

  1. Complete agree, with one small exception. 2 years ago, Sam’s had these frozen pizzas with deli turkey and diced jalapeno on them. They were insanely delicious. I don’t hold frozen pizza in the same light as actual pizza though.

  2. I love a shrimp pizza from Valentino’s in Nebraska, and Spin! makes a great potato pizza. I’m with you on provel and I can’t think of one reason in the world why anyone would want mayonnaise on a pizza. Eggs of any kind seem wrong.

    When you think of a pizza as just bread and cheese, then you can imagine any number of toppings that would go with bread and cheese. So I’m not a “pizza conservative” as you appear to be.

  3. Of course NE would put shrimp on pizza. Why not serve up a bierock calzone?

  4. Nebraska does have some strange food combinations. What surprises me is the absence of deep fried pizza in the Cornhusker state. It seems like a natural progression for the Nebraska diet.

  5. There was a place in Iowa that had a BLT Pizza. It used mayonnaise instead of sauce, and was topped with bacon, tomatoes and shredded iceberg lettuce. I’ve heard of other similar applications. Egg is a great addition to the list, adding it now.

    Also I’m not a pizza conservative, I prefer to think of it as being a “purist.”

  6. I feel, based on Chimpo’s and mine shared experience, that macaroni and cheese should be included in the not acceptable pizza topping list.

  7. Leaf vegetables should be included. Applied after cooking, it just flops around making a giant mess. Prior to cooking doesn’t really need an explanation.

    I am generally against the addition to anything added to the pizza post-cooking.

  8. Most of all, I hate provel on pizzas and salads. As much as I love St. Louis, I avoid places that have a play-doh fun factory in the back, extruding provel cheeze on anything and everything. Yuck o rama….

    Thanks for the chef extraordinaire designation, Dave. That is very kind. 🙂

  9. You know, I can’t think of one pizza I had while in Europe that didn’t have an egg cooked in the center of it. Seemed odd (o.k – downright pyschotic) the first time I had it, but it grows on you.

    Never saw the egg on pizza thing in Asia. Then again, never saw a pizza in Asia.

    And haven’t seen the egg thing in the States. WHo does it?

  10. Lawrence’s Pizza Shuttle, well known to those who spent some formative years in Larryville, has a mayonnaise-laden BLT pizza. It has appeal if you’re in a . . . certain state of being, or so I’ve heard.

  11. Dear DLC – both potato and egg are traditional pizza ingredients in um Italy.

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