Classic Pizza Toppings and Combinations!

Tasty pizza with cheese, bacon, olives and feferoni
original pizza
Basil bowl for pizza

I love playing around with various ingredients and combinations that would make the pizza more unique.

However, there is something about that Italian attitude that we should stop doing that. As I often repeat, less is more! It really is.

There are classic toppings we all know about, right? Well, why should play around with something that simple?

Now, let’s get to the basics and go through those classic options where you can’t go wrong.

Pizza Toppings infographic

First is, of course, the cheese

Can you imagine a pizza without cheese? I honestly can’t.

But not all types are good for pizza. Brie or feta just don’t belong there.

These are the most common options:

  1. Mozzarella 
  2. Provolone 
  3. Ricotta 
  4. Parmesan 
  5. Gorgonzola 
  6. Cheddar 
  7. Pecorino Romano 
  8. Fontina 


Tomato Sauce for Pizza

Tomato sauce is key to a great pizza. The kind you use, like the sweet San Marzano tomatoes from Naples, and how you prepare it really shapes the pizza’s flavor. Season it with herbs, garlic, salt, and olive oil to make it just right.

Meat, Vegetables, Fruits, and Herbs

While the crust and sauce form the base, it’s the toppings that truly define a pizza’s character.

Let’s check out the most popular meat toppings, vegetables and fruits, and herbs and seasonings, and how they work together to create a perfect dish.

Cured meats like prosciutto, salami, and pepperoni are popular choices for Italian pizzas. Prosciutto is known for its delicate texture and salty taste, salami offers garlicky and spiced notes, while pepperoni brings a smoky flavor with a bit of heat. Each adds a distinct and delicious twist to the pizza.

Vegetable Toppings for Pizza

Traditional vegetable choices like bell peppers add sweetness and a nice crunch. Onions bring a sharp taste, mushrooms contribute an earthy flavor, and olives offer a salty kick. Each one adds its own special touch to the dish.

Fruits on pizza, while more controversial, can add an intriguing twist. Pineapple is the most notable example, often paired with ham for the classic Hawaiian pizza.

Herbs like basil, oregano, and thyme add a fresh aroma and a burst of flavor to any dish. Basil adds a sweet touch, oregano brings an earthy note, and thyme offers a hint of lemon. A sprinkle of chili flakes adds heat, garlic powder gives a bold kick, and a bit of oil enriches the whole experience.

Final Words

And that’s our tour of pizza toppings! From the classic Margherita to wild new creations, we’ve seen how pizza brings people together, one slice at a time.