Why Is Pizza Called A Pie?

by | Jan 4, 2023

You’re probably curious why pizza is called pie. Did you know that the words “pie” and “pizza” are commonly used synonymously in recipes?

Pizza resembled a pie in that it had a crust, was cut into triangle-shaped parts, and was round in form. But why is pizza sometimes called pie?

The term “pie” has a long history. Pomidore pizza was a cuisine created by Italian-American immigrants in the United States around the beginning of the 20th century.

It was a sliced, circular meal that was quite popular, which led some people to compare it to pie.

There is still much to learn about the relationship between pizza and pies, however. Consequently, for foodies who are interested in learning all about Italian cooking, particularly pizza.

Even while calling pizza a pie hasn’t become commonplace everywhere, pizza will always make your mouth water. Order the finest Italian ingredients used to make real Neapolitan Margherita pizza.

Pizza in the United States is referred to as “pie” because when it was originally introduced, there was nothing to compare it to, so they called it “tomato pie,” which was the closest thing they could think of.

Later, when the two languages converged, the name “pizza pie” was born.

red pizza pie

Pizza: Definition & History

Pizza is the most popular fast food in the world. At home, at eateries, and on street corners, we eat it everywhere.

Pizza has been consumed by people for many years in many forms.

People who couldn’t afford plates or who were on the road used slices of flatbread covered with savories as a quick and enjoyable meal as far back as antiquity.

In Naples, Italy, when bakers sold extra dough to the underprivileged, pizzas were created.

The bread evolved into one of the first pizzas and was topped with anchovies, cheese, tomatoes, and oil.

Due to their affordability, filling nature, and deliciousness, these pizzas were served all throughout Italy.

Additionally, pizza began to take on numerous forms all around Italy, and toppings like meat, herbs, vegetables, and spices were added.

One of the most well-known varieties of pizza accessible today in Italy, Pizza Margherita, was first created in Naples in 1889, during the visit of the Italian monarch and queen, King Umberto I and Queen Margherita.

Pizza with red tomato sauce, mozzarella cheese, and basil was a favorite of the Queen, therefore it was given the name Pizza Margherita after her.

Nobody is certain whether the crimson sauce, white cheese, and green basil ingredients on Pizza Margherita are just a coincidence or not.

The actual contemporary Italian pizza was eventually made possible by the 18th and early 19th centuries’ introduction of tomatoes to Italian cooking.

And although pizza continued to be a specialty of Naples for a few years, it wasn’t always that way.

Pizza has permeated various nations and cultural groups as it has migrated throughout the world.

It spread like wildfire over the growing continent when Italian immigrants carried it to the United States at the beginning of the 19th century.

In the 20th century, several regional styles emerged, including those from Buffalo, California, Chicago, Detroit, Greek, New Haven, New York, and St. Louis.

Over 3 billion pizzas are consumed annually in America, from New York to Chicago to California.


The First Pizzeria

The first pizza in the world, Pizzeria Port’Alba, opened its doors in 1830.

The harbor community of Port’Alba, which is close to Naples, is said to have been the birthplace of the first Italian pizzerias. The pizza immediately gained popularity and was dubbed the “yeast of life” and a “source of pleasant dining.”

The first known pizza restaurant in the Naples region is believed to be Antica Pizzeria Port’Alba, according to history.

In 1738, the still-operational Antica Pizzeria Port’Alba started baking pizzas in furnaces coated with volcanic rocks from Mount Vesuvius.

Three different dishes from different parts of the world were combined to create the first pizzas with cheese that were served in Naples at the time.

Greeks invented flatbread; Peruvians invented the tomato, and Indian importers of water buffalo milk produced the first mozzarella cheese.

Don Raffaele Esposito, a pizza maker, is credited for bringing them all together and creating the modern pizza.

Fresh pizza pie

Different Types of Pie

A pie may be defined broadly as any dish encased in a pastry crust and cooked normally in a shallow, circular baking dish called a pie dish.

Pies may include savory ingredients, like chicken pot pie, but they are often created with sweet fillings, such as fruit or custard.

We can all agree that pies are the ultimate comfort food, whether you’re eating one that has a special place in our collective memory.

But which pie varieties are the best? It’s difficult to choose favorites from savory to sweet dishes when so many are delicious. Before choosing preferred pies, let’s first explore the many sorts of pies.


Apple Pie

Vanilla ice cream is often served on the side with apples, sugar, and cinnamon.

Even though the English and the Dutch have been producing apple pies for centuries, the Great American Pie is frequently paired alongside baseball and hot dogs as a uniquely American icon.

The apple pie is also not a meal that is exclusively American.

In reality, the earliest apple pie recipe ever printed was in England in 1381 and included figs, raisins, pears, saffron, and other ingredients in addition to apples.


Cherry Pie

Montmorency cherries are tarter and sourer than your typical Bing cherry. Cherries. This pie, which bears the name of the top-charting Warrant song from 1990, is a Fourth of July staple.

Pies are said to have come to the United States with the first English immigrants in the 1600s.

They used long, thin pans to cook their pies. Frequently, the crust was not consumed and was just used to support the contents while baking. As the story goes, Queen Elizabeth created the first cherry pie.


Meat Pies

In a meat pie, a meat-based filling is enveloped in a flaky, buttery, golden-brown pie crust. Meat pies may be made as individual hand pies or baked on a pie plate.

The origins of meat pies may be traced to ancient Greece and Rome, although they were invented in Europe.

The meat was placed into pastry shells created by blending flour and water, which were then baked over fire.

The quality of the meat you had for your pie improved as your money increased.


Pizza Pie

A dish that is normally formed from flattened bread dough that has been baked after being covered with a savory sauce that often includes cheese and tomatoes.

Similar flatbread delicacies from Naples, Italy, in the late 18th or early 19th century gave rise to modern pizza. The term “pizza” was first recorded in 997 AD in Gaeta and then in several locations across Central and Southern Italy. Pizza is mostly consumed in Italy and by Italian immigrants.


Tomato Pizza

Tomato pie may refer to several American pizza varieties, such as Sicilian pizza, which has its roots in Sicily.

Pizza made in the New Haven style, particularly the “simple” kind with only sauce, crust, and little cheese. Thick dough Italian tomato pie with tomato sauce on top.

The origin of this cheese-free cuisine is Southern Italy, where tomatoes and olives are more common than dairy cows.

Sicilian pizza lost its onions and anchovies on the transatlantic voyage and was dubbed “tomato pie” in the manner of Ellis Island.


Margherita Pizza

The components of Margherita pie or pizza are recognized for resembling the colors of the Italian flag.

Red tomato sauce, white mozzarella, and fresh basil are some of these elements.

A pizza that is loved by everyone is made when all of these delectable tastes are put on a hand-kneaded pizza foundation.

The Margherita pizza is regarded as the standard Neapolitan pie.

Despite becoming a well-known dish worldwide, others claim that its origins were in a little Naples alley.

The pizza Margherita was allegedly created in 1889 by Raffaele Esposito, a cook at Pizzeria Brandi.

1 slice cut of pizza pie

Deep Dish Pizza

A spherical, steel pan that resembles a cake or pie pan is used to make deep-dish pizza.

In order to create a basin for a layer of cheese and fillings that are thick, the dough is forced up the edges of the pan.

The pan is greased to make removal simple and to give the crust’s edges a cooked appearance.

Chicago is where deep-dish pizza first appeared. The Chicago deep-dish pizza was created by Ike Sewell and Ric Ricardo.

In 1943, these two launched Pizzeria Uno in Chicago using their passion for both business and Italian food.


Pomidore Pizza

Pomidore pizza was a cuisine created by Italian immigrants in the United States around the beginning of the 20th century.

It was a sliced, circular meal that was quite popular, which led some people to compare it to pie.


Italian Pizza

A flattened disk of bread dough topped with various combinations of olive oil, oregano, tomato, olives, mozzarella or other cheese, and other ingredients makes up pizza, an Italian dish that is quickly baked in a wood-fired oven that has been heated to a very high temperature before being served hot.

But the Campania area in southwest Italy, which includes the city of Naples, is where Italian pizza was first created in contemporary times.

Naples, a Greek colony that was established approximately 600 B.C., was a bustling maritime city in the 1700s and early 1800s.


Why Do People Call It Pizza?

According to the “Vocabolario Etimologico della Lingua Italiana,” the term pizza comes from the dialectal pinza, which in turn comes from the Latin pinsere, which means to pound or stamp.

Others place its origin in the English word “bite” or the Lombardic words “bizzo” or “pizzo,” both of which mean “mouthful” in English.

The word “pizza” is derived from the Latin word “pinsa,” which is another form of the verb “to pinsere.” This phrase denotes pressing or pressing down on the dough.

According to a third explanation, the word “pizza” originated from the verb “pizzicare,” which means “to pluck or pinch.”

Additionally, this implies that pizza may be taken out of the oven fast. The Italian word pizzo is also where the word pizzicare comes from.

Pizza is said to have been brought to Southern Italy by Greek settlers in the region about 600 BC from the Mediterranean region.

Therefore, the Greek word pitta may have inspired the name pizza. A thin, circular flatbread called pitta is cooked in a hot, wood-fired oven.

These flatbreads were first topped with tomato and other ingredients by the Italians, who later created the cuisine that is familiar to us today.

freshly cut pizza pie

Final Thoughts

Everyone appears to enjoy the delicious taste of pizza; whether you make your own homemade pizzas–Neapolitan pizza, thin crust pizza, or beer pizza– from internet recipes, order fast pizza delivery, or purchase a pizza dish from an Italian restaurant.

We are all aware that without pizza dough, pizza sauce, and other toppings such as salami, pepperoni, and veggies that enhance its flavor, a perfectly good or even the best pizza would not exist.

And whether you adore pizza or are an avid baker, we hope that this piece has taught you something new and given you an explanation for why pizza is called pie.

Keep in mind, when someone uses the term “pie,” they are referring to the whole pizza, not simply a slice.

Written By SEODave777

David Nilsson is the founder of The SEO Back Office and former SEO agency Converted Click. Passionate about people, search engines, faith, technology and boxing.

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