Deep dish, thin crust, or somewhere in between, North America is a nation of pizza addicts. That craving has only grown while we’ve been sticking close to home during the pandemic as pizza is the ultimate comfort food.
But which 10 cities take the biggest slice out of 2021’s Best Cities for Pizza Addicts?
LawnStarter compared the 100 biggest cities in the USA across five key factors, including prevalence of pizzerias, average cost, and search popularity.
Highlights and Lowlights
Big Apple? Call it the Big Pizza: New Yorkers love their tomato pies, so much so the Big Apple sits atop our Best Cities for Pizza Addicts. Who hasn’t heard of or tasted New York-style pizza? The hand-tossed crust is wonderfully crisp and airy at the edge and thin in the middle. The traditional New York-style pizza is just tomato sauce and mozzarella. Savour it by the slice, folded for easy eating.
Best in the Midwest: Chicago and a slew of other Midwest cities took top-10 spots: Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, St. Louis, and Cleveland. The Windy City, of course, is renowned for its deep dish Chicago-style pizzas. Each slice can be a meal in itself! Pittsburgh has the most pizza places per resident, with the other cities also sporting impressive numbers. St. Louis boasts some relatively cheap pizza, along with its own named-after-the-city thin crust style. The Washington Post has called the Midwest a region whose “pizza time has come.”
Frozen Pizza Toppings
Frozen pizza is a big staple in our households. As much as we love frozen pizza, it can get boring after a while. Adding things like mushrooms, garlic, and onions before it goes into the oven is great and all, but in the end, it’s still a frozen pizza.
Spicy honey has been on the up-and-up as a condiment in recent years. It’s great in sauces or glazes and a compliment to fried chicken, biscuits, ice cream, and pizza!
While you can certainly add ricotta to a pizza before it goes into the oven, adding it cold after the pizza’s done baking. Dab bits of it all over the pizza so you get some with every bite. It’s cooling, rich, and smooth, and it gives your pizza a fancy feel.
Arugula, Lemon Juice & Olive Oil
Fresh bitter greens like arugula on top of pizza are highly underrated. You can put them right on top of the pizza as-is, but an even better idea is to toss them in a touch of olive oil and a healthy dose of lemon juice. This is a good way to brighten up the pie without having to mess around too much in the kitchen.
A pizza devoid of meat and dairy doesn’t have to taste boring. Nutritional yeast, is a byproduct of brewing beer, and it’s got such an impressively savoury flavour that many people use it to replace parmesan in their cooking. A red pie with olive oil and garlic topped with a sprinkle of nutritional yeast will yield you a delicious, light result with a ton of flavour.
If you’re not feeling traditional pizza or frozen pizza, trying our manakeesh is a great option. Manakeesh is kind of like a Middle Easter version of the pizza. It’s Arabic flat bread topped with a mixture of olive oil and thyme (za’atar). Manakeesh can also be topped with cheese, meat and and many other toppings.
At Yafa Café, we have quite a variety of them to order, that are
- Zaatar is thyme made with marjoram rounded out by nutty toasted sesame seeds and lemony sumac. Add veggies for extra toppings.
- Zaatar-Labneh is dollops of Labneh, similar to Greek yogourt. It makes the tang of sumac and the sharpness of the wild herbs lighter and more lemony.
- Zaatar-Shatta is thyme with a snap of heat, spread of tomato hot chili. Add labneh to cool off the spiciness.
- Zaatar-Cheese is made with melted cheese on one half, and with zaatar on the other.
- Cheese Fusion is a mixture of 4 cheeses.
- Half cheese is half melted cheese, part zaatar and part mhammara, a sauce made with roasted red pepper.
- Spinach Triangle is spinach mixed with onions, oregano, and marinated with lemon and sumac.
- Sfeiha is seasoned ground beef/lamb mixed with Arabic spices, tomato, onions & mint (Lahm-bi-aajin).
- Spinach-Cheese mixes spinach with onions, oregano and sumac spread and topped with cheese.
- Sfeiha-Cheese is a Sfeiha ground beef/lamb mixture topped with a blend of melted cheese.
- Bayd is a mixture of beaten eggs, cheeses, parsley, zaatar and black pepper.
- Khodra (veggie) is a manakeesh with a special sauce, topped with cheese, olives, onions and peppers, infused with thyme.
- Yafa Spicy Chicken is a shawarma chicken on hot tomato sauce topped with cheese, full of chili, Gaza style.