the best pizza toppings
there’s no doubt that a classic margherita pizza never fails to disappoint and is also easy to whip up for a quick dinner at home. fresh tomatoes, creamy mozzarella, a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and a sprinkle of fresh basil. perfect.
saying that, when we're planning a big pizza event, or even a small family gathering, we do like to push the boat out and offer more pizza variety. here’s a list of some of our absolute favourite pizza toppings:
tomato sauce is of course a common pizza topping, and also versatile enough to be a base for many other ingredients. it can be sweet, savoury or spicy, depending on how you make it.
if your tomato sauce is made from fresh tomatoes, it will probably have a sweeter taste. on the other hand, if you use tomato paste in your recipe, you'll get a slightly more salty-tasting result.
have a read of our quick and easy pizza sauce recipe.
say cheese on your pizza
mozzarella is a fresh, white, soft italian cheese that comes in many different forms.
it's a good source of calcium, which builds strong bones and teeth, and also contains protein, phosphorus and potassium - important nutrients for growing children and teens so a great reason to have more pizza on the menu at home.
mozzarella di bufala
the most common type of mozzarella for pizza is mozzarella di bufala, from the milk of water buffalo raised in southern italy near naples (the region known as campania).
the delicate flavour and creaminess pairs well with tomatoes and other toppings on pizza.
fior di latte mozzarella
fior di latte, or 'flower of milk' in english, is another classic mozzarella. the name refers to the white colour and bloomy rind characteristic of the cheese.
it has a sweet, light flavour that makes it ideal for pairing with other ingredients so is perfect for pizza!
burrata is a much richer and creamier version, made from a pouch of stretched mozzarella filled with shreds of mozzarella (stracciatella) and cream.
place a whole burrata on top of a cooked pizza, truly delicious.
emmental cheese is a soft, washed-rind cow's milk cheese with a mild, sweet flavour and creamy texture. it is named after the emmental region of switzerland, where it was first produced in the 13th century.
another favourite pizza of ours is topped with a mix of grated emmental cheese and creme fraiche, red onion and salami.
ricotta is a soft italian cheese made from whey; thick and creamy and mild with a slightly grainy texture.
one of our favourite ways to use ricotta on pizza is dotted over fresh tomatoes, and sprinkled with basil and olive oil - simple but delicious. if you have any leftover tomatoes from making pizza sauce, you should definitely try this one out.
salami is a type of cured sausage made from a mixture of pork, beef, veal or sometimes poultry. it's spicy and salty, making it the perfect topping for your pizza.
alhough salami is typically sliced into thin pieces, try cutting these into strips to maximize the meaty topping on your pizza.
our scottish half of team babadoh love east coast cured salami (and their nduja...and chorizo...and, well everything they sell actually).
pepperoni is a type of salami made with pork, beef, and various spices including paprika, chilli pepper, and cayenne pepper giving it a spicy kick.
it's thought to have been taken to america by italian immigrants, and has gone on to become one of the most popular pizza toppings in america today. it’s always a winner in our house too! properoni is a favourite.
sucuk is to turkey what salami is to italy - a spicy sausage made from minced meat, usually beef but sometimes lamb is added, and packed with spices. we use it a lot due to our turkish heritage, especially on pide, a tasty turkish pizza.
nduja is a traditional calabrian delicacy - spicy, spreadable sausage made from ground pork, hot peppers and spices.
it’s used in many dishes, but one of our favourites is nduja on pizza with feta, rocket and a drizzle of hot honey.
chicken is a brilliantly versatile topping for pizza. try roasted chicken breasts, fried chicken strips, shredded chicken. infuse flavour with bbq or tandoori spices or marinade it in lemon and garlic before cooking. even just buy pre-cooked chicken pieces. the list is literally endless…
bacon is a salt-cured pork that is often also smoked. it's usually made from pork belly or back and can be cooked to different levels of ‘doneness’, from chewy to crispy. bacon adds a salty flavour to pizza and a crunch if you like it crispy. how about a breakfast pizza with bacon and egg?
healthy things up with some vegetables
mushrooms are an excellent source of vitamin D, which is often lacking from our limited sunshine in the UK. they're also high in potassium, which helps to regulate blood pressure, and they are low in fat while providing a good source of fibre and protein.
top a pizza with bechamel sauce, sliced mushrooms and lashings of black pepper for a tasty and healthy eat.
red onions are sweet and savoury, making them a tasty addition to pizzas with cheese, meat or other vegetables. they are particularly good with tomato sauce, pesto and olives.
slice them thinly to prevent the strong flavour overwhelming the rest of the pizza, or you could pre-cook the onions in butter and add a delicious caramel flavour to your pizza.
sweety drop peppers
sweety drop peppers are biquinho peppers, thumbnail sized and sweet with a touch of heat.
they can be eaten raw or cooked and are especially tasty when pickled - an ideal pizza topping to add sweetness without overpowering the flavour of other toppings.
a bit of greenery on your pizza
although there are many great ways to use fresh basil, pizza is definitely one of the best. torn over a pizza with a tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella cheese and a kiss of extra virgin olive oil; the classic margherita.
rocket is a leafy green vegetable with a peppery taste that works well scattered over cooked pizza...and looks rather sophisticated even on the most basic of pizzas. another bonus is it's high in iron, calcium, vitamin A and also fibre which makes it really good for your digestive system.
erm...fruit on your pizza?
never gonna happen!
LIES. another of the babadoh team has intercepted here and would like to add a note about their LOVE of pineapple on pizza. it truly is a pizza topping that divides opinion.
juicy sliced peaches, mozzarella, basil and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar. just leaving this here for you to try.
it's worth it.
other drizzly accompaniments
this is a must for us. it adds a nice kick to the pizza and also the perfect dipping sauce for crusts. we are big fans of tracklements sweet mustard ketchup.
a drizzle of hot honey is a great topping for pizza. sweet and sticky, infused with chilli for a kick of spice, making it the perfect complement to savoury toppings like cheese or pepperoni. It also peps up other sweet toppings such as pineapple.
we love jd's xxtra hot habanero infused hot honey and wilderbee gochujang organic hot honey.
pizza topping rules
well, there aren't really any rules to pizza toppings apart from pineapple but let’s not go there!
over the years we've seen some amazing creations from pizza bloggers and restauraunts, with really clever use of pizza ingredients. we've barely even touched the sides with our selections here.
the one thing we know for sure is not to overload your pizza. it's a simple fact that the weight of the toppings can make it much harder to transfer your pre-cooked pizza onto the peel - oh the tears we’ve shed when this happens.