Italian Pizza

Is Pizza American or Italian? The Origins and History of Everyone’s Favorite Dish

One of the most consumed foods worldwide is pizza. It’s a cuisine that has evolved greatly throughout the years and has been eaten for many centuries.

Italian Pizza

Pizza’s origin and whether it is an Italian or American dish are still up for debate, though.

Pizza is frequently referred to as an Italian meal, and there is solid evidence to back up this assertion. It is thought that the first pizza was made in Naples in the 18th century. Pizza has long been a staple of Italian cuisine.

Fresh tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, and basil are some of the common high-quality, straightforward ingredients used to make Italian pizza. Additionally, it is prepared in a wood-fired oven, which imparts a special flavor and texture.

On the other hand, some contend that pizza is a national dish of the United States. Despite having its roots in Italy, pizza first gained international notoriety in the United States.

American-style pizza frequently has toppings like pepperoni, sausage, and mushrooms and is typically larger and thicker than Italian pizza.

Additionally, it is cooked at a higher temperature, giving it a chewy texture and a crispy crust.

It ultimately comes down to personal preference as to whether pizza is considered to be Italian or American, and each person is free to make that choice.

History of Pizza

Pizza has become a popular dish all over the world, but its origins can be traced back to Italy. In this section, we will explore the history of pizza and its journey from Italy to America.

Tasty traditional italian pizza

Origin of Pizza

The origin of pizza can be traced back to ancient civilizations such as the Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans, who made flatbreads with various toppings.

However, the modern pizza as we know it today originated in Naples, Italy, in the 18th or early 19th century.

The word pizza was first documented in AD 997 in Gaeta and successively in different parts of Central and Southern Italy.

Pizza in Italy

Pizza quickly became a popular dish in Italy, especially in Naples, where it was sold by street vendors and small shops.

The traditional Neapolitan pizza is made with San Marzano tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, and fresh basil, and baked in a wood-fired oven at a high temperature for a short time.

The result is a thin, crispy crust with a slightly chewy texture.

In Italy, pizza is not just a food, but a cultural icon. It is a symbol of Italian identity and a source of national pride.

In 1984, the Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana (AVPN) was founded to promote and protect the traditional Neapolitan pizza. Today, the AVPN has over 700 members in 47 countries.

Pizza in America

Pizza made its way to America with the Italian immigrants who came to the United States in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

The first pizzeria in America, Lombardi’s, was opened in New York City in 1905. At first, pizza was mainly eaten by Italian immigrants, but it quickly became popular among Americans of all backgrounds.

In America, pizza has evolved to suit local tastes and preferences. In some areas, thick crusts, extra cheese, and a variety of toppings are popular, while in others, thin crusts and simple toppings are preferred. Today, pizza is a staple food in America, with over 3 billion pizzas sold each year.

Pizza has a rich history that spans centuries and continents. Its journey from Italy to America has resulted in a variety of styles and flavors that are enjoyed by people all over the world.

Pizza in Italy

Pizza is a beloved Italian dish that has been enjoyed for centuries. In Italy, pizza is a staple food that can be found in almost every restaurant and pizzeria.

Rustic Italian Pizza

It is a simple dish that typically consists of a thin, crispy crust, tomato sauce, and mozzarella cheese. However, there are many variations of pizza in Italy that are unique to different regions.


The ingredients used to make pizza in Italy are simple and fresh. The dough is made with flour, water, salt, and yeast. The tomato sauce is made with fresh tomatoes, olive oil, garlic, and basil. Mozzarella cheese is the most common cheese used on pizza, but other cheeses like provolone, gorgonzola, and ricotta are also used.

Regional Variations

Pizza in Italy varies depending on the region. In Naples, the birthplace of pizza, the pizza is known as Neapolitan pizza.

It has a thick, fluffy crust and is topped with San Marzano tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, and fresh basil.

In Rome, the pizza is thin and crispy and is often topped with fresh vegetables like artichokes and mushrooms.

In Sicily, the pizza is thick and spongy and is typically topped with anchovies, onions, and tomatoes.

Traditional Italian Pizza Recipes

There are many traditional pizza recipes in Italy that have been passed down for generations. Some of the most popular include:

  • Margherita: topped with tomato sauce, mozzarella cheese, and fresh basil
  • Marinara: topped with tomato sauce, garlic, oregano, and olive oil
  • Quattro formaggi: topped with four types of cheese, usually mozzarella, gorgonzola, parmesan, and provolone
  • Capricciosa: topped with tomato sauce, mozzarella cheese, ham, mushrooms, artichokes, and olives

Overall, pizza in Italy is a simple yet delicious dish that has become a staple food around the world.

Its popularity has led to many variations and adaptations, but traditional Italian pizza remains a beloved classic.

Pizza in America

Pizza has become an iconic dish in America, and it is hard to imagine American cuisine without it.

In this section, we will explore the history of pizza in America, the different pizza styles that have emerged, and some of the most famous pizza chains in the country.

Supreme Pizza

History of Pizza in America

Pizza arrived in the United States in the early 20th century, brought by Italian immigrants who settled primarily in the large cities of the Northeast. The first pizzeria in America, Lombardi’s, opened in New York City in 1905.

During World War II, pizza became popular among American soldiers stationed in Italy, and upon their return, they brought their love of pizza back with them.

By the 1950s, pizza had become a mainstream food in America, and its popularity has only continued to grow since then.

American Pizza Styles

While Italian pizza is typically thin and crispy, American pizza tends to be thicker and more substantial. There are several different pizza styles that have emerged in America, each with its own unique characteristics.

  • New York-style pizza: This is perhaps the most famous American pizza style, characterized by its large, foldable slices and thin, crispy crust. It is typically sold by the slice or as a whole pie.
  • Chicago-style pizza: This deep-dish pizza is known for its thick, buttery crust and generous toppings. It is typically eaten with a knife and fork.
  • California-style pizza: This style of pizza is characterized by its thin, crispy crust and creative toppings, often including non-traditional ingredients like goat cheese or arugula.

Famous American Pizza Chains

There are countless pizza chains in America, but a few have risen to national prominence. Here are some of the most famous:

  • Domino’s Pizza: Founded in 1960, Domino’s is now the largest pizza chain in the world, with over 17,000 locations in more than 90 countries.
  • Pizza Hut: Founded in 1958, Pizza Hut is known for its pan pizza and stuffed crust pizza. It has over 18,000 locations worldwide.
  • Papa John’s: Founded in 1984, Papa John’s is known for its commitment to using fresh ingredients and its signature garlic dipping sauce. It has over 5,000 locations worldwide.

In conclusion, pizza has become an integral part of American cuisine, and its popularity shows no signs of slowing down.

From classic New York-style pizza to innovative California-style pies, there is a pizza for every taste and preference.

Is Pizza American or Italian?

Pizza is a popular dish enjoyed all around the world. However, the question of whether pizza is American or Italian is a debate that has been ongoing for years.

Bbq Pork Pizza

We’ll compare the ingredients, pizza styles, and cultural significance of pizza in Italy and America.

Ingredients Comparison

The ingredients used in pizza vary depending on where it’s made. Italian pizza is known for its simple and fresh ingredients.

The dough is usually made with just flour, water, yeast, and salt. The sauce is made with San Marzano tomatoes, and the toppings are usually limited to just a few high-quality ingredients such as mozzarella cheese, basil, and olive oil.

On the other hand, American pizza tends to have a more complex flavor profile. The dough is often thicker and sweeter, and the sauce is made with a blend of tomatoes and spices.

The toppings are more varied and can include anything from pepperoni to pineapple.

Pizza Styles Comparison

There are many different styles of pizza in both Italy and America. In Italy, the most popular styles are Neapolitan pizza and Roman pizza.

Neapolitan pizza is thin and crispy, with a slightly chewy crust. Roman pizza is thin and crispy all the way through.

In America, the most popular styles are New York-style pizza and Chicago-style pizza. New York-style pizza is thin and crispy, with a slightly chewy crust. Chicago-style pizza is deep-dish, with a thick crust and a lot of cheese and toppings.

Cultural Significance

Pizza has a deep cultural significance in both Italy and America. In Italy, pizza is a traditional dish that has been enjoyed for centuries.

It’s often eaten as a family meal or with friends, and it’s a symbol of Italian culture.

In America, pizza is a beloved fast food that has become a staple of American cuisine. It’s often eaten on the go or as a quick meal at home.

Pizza is also a cultural icon in America, and it’s often associated with movies, TV shows, and pop culture.

While pizza has its roots in Italy, it has evolved into a dish that is enjoyed all around the world.

Whether you prefer Italian-style pizza or American-style pizza, there’s no denying that pizza is a delicious and beloved dish that has a special place in our hearts.


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