Does Pineapple Belong On Pizza?

Welcome to a topic that has ignited passionate divided pizza lovers around the world: Does pineapple belong on pizza

Yes, that sweet tropical fruit has become the center of a contentious battle; one that pits those who believe in the harmonious marriage of pineapple and pizza against staunch traditionalists who argue vehemently that such a combination is sacrilege.

In this blog post, we aim to explore the age-old question: Should pineapple be a topping on pizza? So grab a slice and get ready to embark on a culinary adventure.

Who Invented Pineapple Pizza?

The invention of the controversial “Hawaiian Pizza” is credited to Sam Panopoulos, a Greek immigrant to Canada.

It was in 1962, in his restaurant, The Satellite, located in Chatham, Ontario, where he first decided to put canned pineapple on their pizza. According to Panopoulos, the addition of pineapple was merely an experiment to boost their menu diversity and offer something different to their customers.

The combination of pineapple with ham, cheese, and tomato sauce was innovative for its time, sparking curiosity and divided opinions that persist to this day.

Little did they know, this experiment was to spark a culinary debate lasting decades.

What Type Of Pizza Is Topped With Pineapple?

The type of pizza famously topped with pineapple is known as the “Hawaiian Pizza“. Contrary to its name, the Hawaiian Pizza didn’t originate from Hawaii but from Canada as we’ve learned.

Its prime ingredients include cheese, ham, or sometimes Canadian bacon, and of course, the contentious pineapple. The sweet and tangy pineapple complements the salty flavor of the ham or bacon, creating a unique taste profile that has won over many pizza lovers worldwide.

While it remains a divisive choice, Hawaiian Pizza continues to be a popular order in pizzerias globally.

Does Pineapple Belong On Pizza?

The question of does pineapple belong on pizza has fueled endless debates, with ardent advocates on both sides of the aisle making compelling arguments for and against this tropical topping’s place on a classic slice.

The Argument For

Supporters of pineapple on pizza give some reasons:

1. Pineapples Are Nutritious

Pineapples are a powerhouse of vital nutrients, making them a nutritionally rich topping option for pizza enthusiasts.

– Rich in Vitamins: Pineapples are packed with vitamin C, which aids in boosting immune system health and has antioxidant properties. They also contain Vitamin A and Beta-carotene, beneficial for maintaining healthy skin and vision.

– High in Fiber: This tropical fruit is a good source of dietary fiber. Fiber aids in digestion, preventing constipation, and promoting a healthy gut.

– Contain Bromelain: Pineapples are the only dietary source of bromelain, an enzyme with anti-inflammatory and digestive benefits. This makes them particularly healthy.

– Low in Calories: Despite their sweet taste, pineapples are surprisingly low in calories. This makes them an excellent option for those looking to enjoy a delicious pizza topping without loading up on excess calories.

– Hydrating: With their high water content, they contribute to the overall fluid intake, helping to prevent dehydration – a delicious way to stay refreshed.

2. Science Says Yes!

Pineapple contains bromelain, a distinctive enzyme that effectively breaks down proteins, resulting in tenderized meats. When paired with the savory meats on a pizza, it contributes to a harmonious blend of flavors that is particularly delightful to the taste buds.

Moreover, bromelain aids in digestion, facilitating the breakdown of proteins from the cheese and meats on the pizza. Therefore, not only does pineapple add a delightful sweet-savory twist to your pizza, but it may also help make it a bit easier to digest.

From a scientific nutritional perspective, the inclusion of pineapple on pizza makes perfect sense.

Pineapple’s loaded with bromelain, a unique enzyme that breaks down proteins. This enzyme makes meats softer.

3. Hawaiian Pizza Is Healthier

Hawaiian pizza, owing to its pineapple topping, tends to be a healthier choice when compared to other pizza variants. The presence of pineapple adds a significant dose of fiber, vitamins, and enzymes, which are beneficial to the human body.

On the other hand, pizzas topped with high-fat, high-sodium meats and cheeses can lead to issues like high cholesterol and high blood pressure when consumed in excess.

The Hawaiian pizza, with its balanced blend of sweet pineapple, savory ham, and cheese, provides a more nutritionally diverse profile.

The Argument Against

Those against the inclusion of pineapple on pizza have their own set of compelling reasons:

1. Tomatoes and Pineapples Are Both Acidic

One of the main reasons some people argue against pineapple as a pizza topping is the acidity it introduces. Both tomatoes and pineapples are acidic, which can negatively impact the overall flavor balance of the pizza.

– Tomatoes used in the pizza sauce have a pH level of around 4.3.

– Pineapples have a pH level of around 3.5

This imbalance in flavors can result in an overly tart pizza, detracting from the nuanced flavors of other ingredients. Additionally, the double dose of acidity can potentially cause digestive discomfort for some people, particularly those with sensitive stomachs or conditions like acid reflux.

2. Soggy Crust

Pineapple, due to its 86% water content, can often make a pizza crust soggy, particularly if the preparation isn’t done right.

When pineapple is heated, it releases its juices, which can seep into the crust, making it soggy and less enjoyable. This is one of the main complaints of those against pineapple on pizza – nobody likes a wet, droopy slice.

3. Clash Of Flavors

Some critics of pineapple on pizza argue that its sweet and tangy taste doesn’t belong in the world of pizza, traditionally known for its savory flavor palette.

They argue that the sweetness of pineapple clashes with the flavors of other common pizza toppings like cheese, tomato, and various meats. This clash of flavors can disrupt the balance and harmony that a good pizza should have, turning a meal into a culinary tug-of-war.

Different Variations Of Pizza Toppings Featuring Pineapple

While the above question continues to be a hot topic of debate, it’s undeniable that the inclusion of this fruit has led to a variety of intriguing pizza topping combinations. Here are some of the most popular variations:

1. Pineapple and Pepperoni: This combo pairs the sweet and tangy pineapple with the spicy and savory pepperoni, creating a delightful contrast that is favored by many.

2. Pineapple and Jalapenos: This version brings together the sweetness of pineapple and the fiery kick of jalapenos, resulting in a pizza that is bursting with flavor.

3. Pineapple and Chicken: This combination marries the sweetness of pineapple with the mild flavors of chicken, making for a delicious and well-balanced pizza.

4. Pineapple and Bacon: In this take on the traditional Hawaiian pizza, crisp, smoky bacon replaces the ham, complementing the pineapple’s sweetness for a robust flavor profile.

5. Pineapple and BBQ Sauce: This rendition sees pineapple paired with a tangy BBQ sauce, offering a deliciously unique blend of sweetness, tanginess, and smokiness.

6. Pineapple, Spinach, and Feta: This gourmet-style pizza combines the sweetness of pineapple with the earthiness of fresh spinach and the tanginess of feta cheese for an elevated pizza experience.

Some Types Of Fruit Toppings On Pizza Besides Pineapple

While pineapple is the most debated fruit topping, there are a plethora of other fruits that also make excellent pizza toppings. Here are a few alternatives for those looking to experiment with their next pizza:

1. Apples

Thin slices of apple can add a unique sweet and slightly tart flavor to your pizza. They pair exceptionally well with gorgonzola cheese, caramelized onions, and arugula.

2. Figs

Fresh or dried figs offer a sweet, earthy flavor that can elevate any pizza. They go beautifully with prosciutto and goat cheese.

3. Pears

Sliced pears lend a mild, sweet flavor that blends perfectly with gouda and brie cheeses. Finish off with a drizzle of balsamic glaze for a delightful gourmet pizza experience.

4. Peaches

When thin slices of peach are added to a pizza, they caramelize beautifully in the heat of the oven, lending a natural sweetness that pairs well with rich, creamy cheeses and savory meats, such as prosciutto.

5. Grapes

Roasting grapes intensifies their sweetness and adds a juicy burst of flavor to each bite. When scattered across a pizza with gorgonzola and arugula, they contribute to an elegant and unique flavor combination that’s both sophisticated and satisfying.

Remember, pizza is a versatile dish that can cater to different taste profiles, and experimenting with different fruit toppings can lead to new mouthwatering creations.


In the grand scheme of gastronomy, the debate about the question of does pineapple belong on pizza is a testament to the subjective nature of taste. Whether you’re a devotee of the Hawaiian classic or a purist who prefers to keep fruit far from your pie, it’s the diversity of preferences that keeps the culinary world vibrant and exciting.

Experimentation is the soul of cuisine, and pizza, as a canvas, invites endless possibilities. So, whether it’s pineapple, figs, or even grapes, don’t shy away from exploring new frontiers of flavor.

After all, the next great pizza topping could be but a bite away!

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