The 10 most controversial pizza toppings in 2019

Pizza is definitely experiencing something of a renaissance in Britain right now, with more and more restaurants making on-trend and quirky pizza options a staple of their daily menus. Gone are the days when pizza was just fast food, ordered late at night and brought by a pizza delivery guy on a motorbike. The pizza is becoming a serious foody option. And so the debates rage as to what the perfect pizza topping should be.

One thing’s for sure… the choices are greater than ever with chefs and food writers coming up with ever more creative and incredible topping options.

So, whilst the debate on pineapple rages on (shh, don’t mention the pineapple war), we review some of the more outlandish, avant garde, and downright weird pizza toppings making waves in 2019, with not a margherita in sight.

1. Avocado

This one has seriously divided avocado lovers with many claiming that avocado should never be eaten warm.  And as we all know, pizza is best served volcanically hot. But avocado, like pizza, is currently seeing booming popularity with sales of the fruit (Is it a fruit? Is it a vegetable?) more than doubling in the past year.

Of course, if you are one of the diehard cold pizza leftover lovers, the option is there to combine avocado and pizza without warming it up. But one thing’s for sure, this one is to remain controversial for the foreseeable future.

2. Anchovies

This one has been around for a long time, but it has to take the crown for the most ‘love it or hate it’ pizza topping in recent times. (Shh, I said don’t mention pineapple!)

The taste of the tiny fish is so strong that many complain if they are added to a pizza, it is impossible to taste anything else. Whilst others revere their strong salty flavouring as the food of the gods and a true gourmet pizza lover’s choice. It balances very well with olives and a sprinkling of rocket salad.

3. Mushrooms

Another ‘love it or hate it’ food choice. But this one has extra controversy as even many ‘shroom lovers can’t stand to see them on (or should we say, sliding off) a pizza. Their cause hasn’t helped much by the fact that most of the mushrooms people have probably eaten on pizzas in the past have been the kind of pretty tasteless offerings that many local pizzerias tend to stock, rather than more expensive and flavoursome types of funghi.

4. Pineapples

Okay, so we couldn’t not talk about pineapples. The pineapple war has been raging since time immemorial – or at least since someone thought of tipping some pineapple chunks onto a pizza in Canada in 1962 – and it shows no sign of dying down anytime soon.

Those who love pineapple on their pizza say it perfectly complements the ham or pepperoni that it’s usually paired with, and that it cuts through the greasiness of the cheese.

Whilst those who detest it (hate isn’t a strong enough word to describe some people’s feelings on this topic) say that the tropical fruit has no place on a food item that is serving piping hot and dripping with mozzarella, and that it ruins the taste of the other ingredients like the tomatoes and onions. Serious foodies also tend to avoid the Hawaiian because they say pineapple contains too much moisture and makes the base soggy.

Either way, it seems no amount of peace talks can end this war.

5. Olives

Whether green or black, olives are another controversial topic when it comes to pizza toppings. They often make the list of the least favourite and most disliked toppings on a pizza. People simply prefer to have them either with their drinks or on their salads but never on pizza.

Many other pizza lovers, however, love to have some salty tasting olives as an accompaniment to whatever other topping they so choose. They can work well with tuna as a topping, or, if you happen to be of the opinion that olives are the devil’s topping, ruin tuna as a topping.

6. Pepperoni

This is a pizza topping that definitely has a 50-50 division. More than half of the pizza lovers absolutely love it, whilst the other slightly-less-than-half does not.

In fact, pepperoni is a top-ranking topping in most pizzerias, but it doesn’t mean it’s everyone’s favourite. For diehard pizza traditionalists, it’s a no-go, and as with many toppings that are now popular choices in Britain, it was certainly not part of original recipes from Italy, coming instead from pizza restaurants in the USA.

7. Macaroni Cheese

Cheese, yes.
Macaroni cheese? Cue the arguments.

This one has been spotted in quite a few pizzerias and restaurants up and down the country, and again it’s divided opinion. It seems that someone saw the potential to combine two tried-and-tested, crowd pleasing, comfort food staples, without actually thinking about whether or not it would work. But there are some people who think it’s a genius combination, so who are we to argue.

8. Broccoli

Pizza isn’t always thought of as the most healthy of food options, however this topping choice might just change all of that. For many people though, broccoli is a food that should never make it to the dinner table at all, let alone on a pizza.

9. Tomatoes

Okay, so this one might not seen much of a controversy given that it’s almost impossible to make a pizza without cooking a few tomatoes. However for many people the tomatoes should always stay under the toppings and never appear on top as an EXTRA.

10. Shrimp

Fish always sparks a bit of a heated debate when it comes to pizza, with tuna and anchovies being traditional toppings that have long been on the menu and causes for debate. However, more fashionable and alternative fish toppings have started cropping up in some pizza restaurants and so the debate as to whether pizza is the perfect place to experience your seafood, or whether the two should never be eaten together, rages on.

Whatever your love it or hate it options are, we can all agree that nothing sparks an argument like a pizza topping debate! Luckily, the choices are yours and you can tailor your pizza to be just how you like it in most pizza restaurants. And how boring would the world be if we all liked the same thing?

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