This Is What Pizza Looks Like In 20 Different Parts Of The World
Pizza is, and always will be, a food that basically everyone loves. And how could you not? The gooey, melted cheese on its own is enough to make you fall head over heels — it’s all toasty and hot and stringy, and it’s basically perfection. Then there’s the flavorful marinara sauce, the tasty crust that is good whether you prefer it super thin and crunchy or thicker and more fluffy, and the endless array of toppings. Because, really, that’s one of the best things about pizza: You can put almost anything on it and it will taste good. There are so many variations of pizzas right here in the United States that it’s almost overwhelming to pick a favorite!
But there are also unique variations of pizza around the world, and some of these look extremely different than what you may be used to.
We might be super familiar with New York-style pizza here in the U.S., but in other countries, pizza could look like… well, like it’s not even really pizza. It’s pretty interesting to get a glimpse at the way people all over the world enjoy this delicious meal, and it’s going to make you want to try them all, so start traveling! Below is a glimpse at what pizza looks like in different parts of the world, but one warning: Reading this is going to make you feel hungry.
1. In Sicily, Italy, they eat Sfincione.
Our version of pizza in the U.S. might come from Italy, but not all pizza there is created equal. Sicilians enjoy Sfincione, which is made with a thick, spongy crust and topped with bread crumbs, onions, and caciocavallo (a dry, crumbly cheese).
The American version of this would be a Sicilian-style pie, or a grandma slice, although our version is heavier.
2. In Poland, it’s called zapiekanka.
The Polish version of pizza doesn’t really look like pizza at all — it looks more like an open-faced sandwich. It’s basically similar to a baguette that’s been scooped out in the middle and is filled with cheese, mushrooms, and Polish ketchup. There can be other veggies and cheeses added as well.
3. Chicago is famous for their deep-dish pizza.
Even in the U.S., there are several different versions of pizza. Chicago is famous for the deep-dish pizza, an extra thick pie with high sides that is stuffed with cheese and tomato sauce.
It’s baked in a pan so that the crust can rise up to three inches high along the edges.
4. In Scotland, they love deep-fried pizza.
How do you make pizza better? You throw it in a deep fryer. This is popular in Glasgow and Fife, and is called “pizza crunch.” It’s a deep-fried pizza that is usually served with salt and vinegar or salt and a brown sauce similar to Worcestershire sauce.
It’s usually served with French fries.
5. Naples has the Neapolitan pizza you may know best.
When you think of pizza, you probably think of Neapolitan pizza. It originated in Naples, Italy, and is pretty simple. It’s a thin crust topped with San Marzano tomatoes, fresh mozzarella cheese, basil, garlic, and olive oil.
6. And in Rome, they eat pizza bianca.
Rome’s version of pizza looks more like focaccia than a slice of pizza. It is a street food that doesn’t have any sauce or cheese — instead it’s just pizza dough with sea salt and other seasonings, like olive oil or herbs.
And for the record, it’s still delicious!
7. In Turkey, lahmacun is very popular.
Turkey has a really interesting version of pizza. Called lahmacun, it’s a crispy Turkish flatbread topped with spicy minced meat like lamb or beef and onion, tomato, lettuce, parsley, and lemon. The name loosely translates to “meat and dough.”
8. In Japan, you can find Okonomiyaki.
Japanese pizza is pretty wild-looking, and is comparable to a Japanese pancake. Although the recipe changes based on the region, it usually includes pork, noodles, and squid.
It’s layered or mixed and fried in batter, then topped with an egg and okonomiyaki sauce, which is like a sweet Worcestershire sauce.
9. Pizza is called “coca” in Spain.
This Spanish pizza is made with a flaky crust soaked in olive oil, and can then be topped with many different things: Vegetables, anchovies, olives, pine nuts, and more.
There are sweet or savory versions, and they can be really different depending on where you buy it.
10. In Korea, they like Bulgogi pizza.
This is definitely not boring! Bulgogi pizza is a Korean fusion dish that is basically the Western version of pizza mixed with Korean barbecue. It’s pizza dough topped with bulgogi, which is Korean marinated barbecued beef, vegetables like corn and peppers, and bulgogi sauce, which is white wine, oyster sauce, sesame oil, and sugar.
11. Flammkuchen is Germany’s version of pizza.
If you’re headed to Germany, be sure to check out their pizza, called flammkuchen.
It’s translated as “flame cake” and is made of a thin crust and topped with crème fraîche, bacon, and caramelized onions.
12. Banana pizza is popular in Iceland.
If you thought putting pineapple on pizza was bad, wait until you hear this: In Iceland, they love topping their pizza with bananas. Combinations like bananas and blue cheese or banana and pineapple are pretty popular there.
13. Of course, there’s also New York-style pizza in New York.
This is another version of pizza you’re probably most familiar with: New York-style, which is based on the Neapolitan recipe. It features a thin crust, a light tomato sauce, and mozzarella cheese, and is made with a coal or wood fire oven.
It originated in New York, for the record.
14. In France, they get fancy with tarte flambee.
Tarte flambee is actually really similar to German pizza. It originated in the Alsace region, and is a super thin crust topped with fromage blanc or creme fraiche. It also includes lardons and onions, and is then baked in a wood-fire oven.
15. Khachapuri is Georgia’s version of pizza.
The country of Georgia enjoys khachapuri, which kind of looks like a giant calzone with an egg. The dough is stuffed with cheese and then topped with an egg and butter.
There are different varieties throughout the country, but none that include tomato sauce.
16. In Lebanon, they love manakish.
There are two interesting things about manakish. One is that it’s typically served for breakfast, and two is that it almost looks nothing like pizza. It’s a flatbread topped with za’atar, a spice mixture made with thyme, sesame seeds, and sumac.
It might also have cheese or meat on it.
17. Langos is Hungary’s pizza.
Hungary managed to make pizza even more unhealthy with langos. It’s a piece of deep-fried flat bread that is topped with sour cream, meat, or garlic butter.
It’s a popular street food in countries like the Czech Republic and Slovakia.
18. There’s also St. Louis-style pizza in St. Louis, Missouri.
Chicago and New York aren’t the only two U.S. cities with their own versions of pizza. St. Louis-style pizza features a super thin crust that is made without yeast and is then topped with a variety of cheeses called Provel (it’s a mix of Provolone, Swiss, and white cheddar cheese).
It’s layered with a large amount of toppings.
19. In the Middle East, they love sfiha.
If you love meat, you’ll love sfiha, a Middle Eastern pizza full of it. It’s usually in the shape of a round pie and is filled with seasoned ground mutton or beef, labneh (which is Middle Eastern cheese), and sometimes vegetables.
20. Cong You Bing is a Chinese version of pizza.
Truth be told, Cong You Bing looks more like a Chinese scallion pancake than pizza, but it still counts.