36 Crazy Facts You Didn’t Know About Pizza
1. The First Pizza
When you think pizza you think Italiano, but the origin of pizza goes back to ancient times. Greeks and Egyptians were cooking a pizza-like flatbread and topping it with olive oil and spices. The “modern pizza” as we know it evolved in Naples Italy when tomato was added to in the late 18th century.
2. The United States eats 350 slices of pizza every second
Americans love pizza in fact so much so that we eat about 100 acres of pizza every day according to the National Association of Pizza Operators. That’s a whopping 350 slices every second!
3. 93% of Americans that eat pizza, do once a month
According to a recent survey completed by Mintel, it is estimated that 93% of Americans that eat pizza eat it at least once a month.
4. The most expensive pizza in the world costs $12,000
Luis XIII in Salerno, Italy has the world’s most expensive pizza with a price tag of $12,000! This is no ordinary pizza, first, the dough is aged perfectly before the chief arrives at your home. Yes, they will create this masterpiece in your home kitchen. Some of the ingredients include three types of caviar, lobster from Norway, Cilento, buffalo mozzarella cheese, and grains of pink Australian sea-salt from the Murray River.
5. Breakfast Pizza, 36% of Americans believe that pizza is a breakfast meal
Pizza in the morning? 36% of Americans eat pizza as a breakfast meal. Now, I don’t know if that is leftovers from the night before. I always think pizza tastes better the next day.
6. The most popular pizza topping is pepperoni
It’s not too hard to figure this one out, but now we have the numbers to prove it! In a HarrisPoll® taken in January of 2016, pepperoni was found to be the most popular topping followed by Sausage at number two.
7. World’s Biggest Pizza
The biggest pizza in recorded history was prepared by Dovilio Nardi, Andrea Mannocchi, Marco Nardi, Matteo Nardi, and Matteo Giannotti in Rome, Italy, on 13 December 2012. It had a total surface area of 13,580.28 ft². Guinness was on hand to document the massive pie!
8. A Pizza was Delivered in Space
In 2001, the Russian Space Agency was paid more than a million bucks to deliver a six-inch pizza to the International Space Station. Russian cosmonaut, Yuri Usachov had the honor of being the first person to receive a pizza delivery while in orbit.
9. Super Bowl Sunday is the biggest day of the year for pizza delivery in the U.S
Americans love football and they love pizza, so it fits together perfectly like two slices from the same pie. There are four other days that are full of pizza Halloween, the day before Thanksgiving, New Year’s Eve, and New Year’s Day.
10. Nobody Knows How the Word Pizza Originated
The word “Pizza” was first documented around 997 AD in Gaeta, Italy. After that, the name started to spread to different parts of central and southern Italy.
11. The Outer Edge Is Called the Cornicione
Did you know that there is a technical term for “crust”? Well, there is, it’s called cornicione or the “end crust”. No matter what you call it, your kids will not eat it!
12. World War II helped Bring Pizza to the Masses
Before World War II pizza was mostly enjoyed by Italian immigrants in their home communities. During the occupation of Italy, Allied troops began eating local foods to supplement sometimes dwindling rations. The local bakers could hardly keep up with the US soldier’s demand for pizza, and when they came home after the war they brought their love for pizza back with them.
13. October Is National Pizza Month
It was created by the publisher of Pizza Today magazine, Gerry Durnell in October of 1984. It is now an annually celebrated event, maybe the fact that Halloween is one of the busiest days of the pizza year helped Gerry decide to make October National pizza month?
14. Papa’s Tomato Pies is America’s Oldest Continuously Operating Pizzeria
founded by Giuseppe Papa in 1912 on South Clinton Avenue in Trenton, New Jersey, this family-owned pizzeria has operated continuously since opening day and still remains operated by the Papa family.
15. Pizza is a 37 billion dollar industry
Wow, that’s a lot of money! It looks like pizza is great for the American economy. According to the American Pizza Community, US Pizzerias employ over a million people in 73,000 stores across the country.
16. Cristian Dumitru of Romania ate 200 pounds of pizza in a week
This is one of those records that makes you do a double-take! It’s true, in 2006 Cristian Dumitru set a new world record surpassing Takeru Kobayashi by eating 200 pounds of pizza in a week.
17. There’s an annual Pizza Expo in Las Vegas
The international pizza expo is the world’s largest pizza industry show. Among the attendees will be pizzeria owners and operators, distributors, and food brokers. Don’t book a flight to Vegas trying to find some great pizza, the expo is closed to the general public.
18. There is a mathematical theorem named after pizza
It’s called the Pizza theorem, it states the equality of two areas that arise when one partitions a disk in a certain way. Who thought that pizza would contribute to basic geometry.
You’re halfway there. Take a break and eat a slice.
Now back to your list of Crazy Facts You Didn’t Know About Pizza.
19. The Japanese put mayonnaise on their pizza
When you think of delicious pizza toppings Mayo does not quickly come to mind, but in Japan Mayo on pizza is normal. The type of mayonnaise that is produced in Japan has a sweeter taste the what we use here in the states, though it still doesn’t sound any better.
20. Anchovies are the least favorite pizza topping in America
Earlier on this list, we discovered that pepperoni was the most popular pizza topping in a survey conducted by Harris Poll®. We probably could have just guessed at that one, and you could also easily guess anchovies are the least favorite topping. They stink! Literally.
21. The first North Korean pizzeria opened in 2009
Apparently, Kim Jong-il was very fond of pizza, so much so that he had Italian pizza chefs flown into Pyongyang to teach the craft. Disappointed with the retention of new skills learned he later had representatives flown to Naples and Rome to continue their education before the grand opening.
22. The first American cities to start selling pizza where
New York, Chicago, Philadelphia, and Trenton all had a large population of Southern Italian immigrants around the turn of the century. When they arrived they brought their love of pizza with them. It would not be until after World War II that the pizza would be widely known outside of those small communities.
23. The first frozen pizza hit the market in 1962
Totino’s, which started as Totino’s Italian Kitchen is said to be the first company to offer frozen pizza in 1962. Apparently, they did pretty well, Pillsbury bought the company in 1975.
24. The Hawaiian pizza was invented in Canada
In 1962 by Sam Panopoulos, a native of Greece who was running a pizzeria in Ontario Canada. Bored with only having three toppings available mushroom, bacon, or pepperoni he took down a can of pineapples from the top shelf and decided to throw it on pizza. The rest is history.
25. These two Famous people got their start making and delivering pizzas.
Bill Murray and Jean Claude Van Damme both worked at pizza restaurants, Van Damme used to be a delivery driver before he became famous.
26. Dough-spinning has its own professional-level sporting event
At the World Pizza Championships, you would be competing against the best in five competitive events Freestyle Acrobatic Dough Tossing, Fastest Dough, Largest Dough Stretch, Fastest Pizza Box Folding, and the Pizza Triathlon. There’s also the master’s division of Freestyle Acrobatic Dough Tossing.
27. The U.S. Military Lab recently invented a ready-to-eat pizza
This handy pizza can last for up to three years. Intended for soldiers abroad who just have to have a slice. Making its grand entrance in 2017 soldiers can open MRE #37 and enjoy their treat!
28. There’s a pizza museum in Philadelphia
Pizza Brain is home to the world’s largest collection of pizza memorabilia. That’s just not my opinion, back in 2011 Guinness certified the collection as “the world’s largest collection of pizza-related items”.
29. For children, 44% of pizza consumption occurred at lunch
A USDA food survey concluded that of consumed pizza amongst children 44% was at lunchtime, and 42% was consumed at dinner. The same study also found that adults consume a majority of their pizza at dinner.
30. 251,770,000 lbs of pepperoni are consumed every year
Being America’s most popular topping 689,780 pounds of pepperonis are eaten every day! That’s over 344 tons a day, think of this. Blue whales are the largest animals ever known to have lived on Earth they weigh about 200 tons each.
31. In India, the most preferred pizza topping is tofu
Minced mutton and pickled ginger are among other horrible toppings that rank high on the list as most preferred, what is minced mutton you ask? typically minced mutton is lamb or goat with peas or potatoes.
32. The risk of some cancers are reduced if pizza is consumed once a week
Italian researchers have claimed eating pizza regularly reduced the risk of developing oesophageal cancer by 59%, colon cancer also fell by 26% & mouth cancer by 34%.
33. An average American consumes 46 pizza slices in a single year
According to the leading publisher of market research Packaged Facts the average American will eat 46 slices of pizza a year, or about almost six full pizzas.
34. One of the first documented Internet purchases was a pizza
Pepperoni with mushrooms and extra cheese. This was one of the first recorded purchases made online around 1994. Now more purchases are made online over any other method.
35. The first American pizza shop was Lombardi’s in New York City
Lombardi’s was the first pizza shop opened in the United States back in 1905. It is still located in Little Italy section of Manhattan today. Even though Lombardi’s was the first, they did close their doors for a short time making Papa’s Tomato Pies America’s Oldest Continuously Operating Pizzeria.
36. 220-370 kilocalories is contained in a slice of cheese pizza
I know what you’re thinking, what is a Kilocalorie? Well, here you go “The word “calorie” is used by dietitians to mean kilocalorie when measuring the calorific, heating, or metabolizing value of foods”.
Bonus fact! There are 26,484 books on Amazon about pizza
If you go to Amazon and search for “Pizza Books” you will be bombarded will 26,484 results. Wow, a lot of people must really like to read about pizza!
What did you think of the list of Crazy Facts You Didn’t Know About Pizza?