From anchovies to artichoke hearts, this collection of toppings offers a diverse range of flavors and textures. Whether you’re a fan of the tangy goodness of anchovies or the savory goodness of artichoke hearts, these pizza toppings that start with “A” will add a delicious twist to your favorite pizza.
Anchovies are small, saltwater fish that are often used as a pizza topping. Despite their small size, they pack a powerful flavor punch. Anchovies have a strong, salty, and savory taste that adds depth to a pizza. They are typically added sparingly due to their intense flavor, and when cooked on a pizza, they melt into the cheese and other ingredients, infusing them with their distinct taste. Anchovies are particularly popular in Italian cuisine and can be found as a topping in traditional Neapolitan-style pizzas. Their popularity extends to other regions around the world where people appreciate the unique umami flavor they bring to the table.
2. Artichoke hearts
Artichoke hearts, the tender, edible parts of the artichoke flower bud, make a delicious and versatile pizza topping. With their mild, slightly sweet flavor and tender, meaty texture, they add a unique taste and texture to the overall dish. Artichoke hearts pair well with ingredients like spinach, mushrooms, and cheese, creating a delightful combination of flavors. Popular in Mediterranean cuisine, they can be found on pizzas in countries such as Italy, Greece, and France, where they are commonly enjoyed in various dishes. Marinated or seasoned, artichoke hearts bring a refreshing and tangy element to the pizza, making them a popular choice for vegetarians and those looking for a lighter topping option.
Arugula, also known as rocket or rucola, is a leafy green vegetable that adds a peppery and slightly nutty flavor to pizzas. It is often used as a fresh and vibrant topping that is added after the pizza is baked. Arugula leaves have a distinct taste that adds a pleasant contrast to the richness of other ingredients. The slightly bitter and spicy notes of arugula create a well-balanced flavor profile. Arugula is popular as a pizza topping in Italy, particularly in the region of Liguria, where it is commonly used on pizzas such as the famous Pizza con Rucola e Prosciutto. The addition of arugula not only adds a burst of flavor but also brings a visual appeal with its bright green leaves, making it a popular choice for those looking for a fresh and lively pizza topping.
Asparagus is a versatile vegetable that can be enjoyed in various ways, including as a pizza topping. It adds a unique flavor and texture to the pizza, providing a fresh and crisp element. Asparagus can be thinly sliced or cut into bite-sized pieces and then added to the pizza before baking. The heat of the oven cooks the asparagus, resulting in a tender and slightly charred texture. As a topping, asparagus pairs well with ingredients like goat cheese, prosciutto, and sun-dried tomatoes, creating a combination of flavors that is both savory and slightly sweet. While asparagus may not be a traditional pizza topping in every region, it is a popular choice in many countries where it is readily available and appreciated for its distinct taste.
Avocado is a creamy and nutritious fruit that has gained popularity as a pizza topping in recent years. The smooth and buttery texture of avocado adds a luxurious element to the pizza. It provides a rich and satisfying mouthfeel, complementing the other ingredients on the pizza. Avocado is often sliced or diced and placed on the pizza after it is baked to retain its freshness and vibrant green color. This topping works well with a variety of flavor profiles, such as Mexican-inspired pizzas or those featuring spicy ingredients. Avocado is particularly popular in North America, where it has become a trendy addition to many pizza recipes.
6. Apple slices
Apple slices on pizza offer a unique combination of sweet and savory flavors. The natural sweetness of the apple provides a refreshing contrast to the other ingredients. The crisp texture of the apple slices adds a pleasant crunch to each bite. Apples pair well with ingredients like caramelized onions, bacon, and blue cheese, creating a delightful blend of flavors. While apple-topped pizzas may not be as common globally, they have gained popularity in certain regions such as the United States and Canada, where they are often featured as a seasonal, dessert or specialty pizza topping.
Almonds are a versatile nut that can be used as a pizza topping to add a satisfying crunch and nutty flavor. They can be sliced or slivered and sprinkled on top of the pizza before baking. The toasty and crunchy texture of almonds complements the softness of the other ingredients, creating an enjoyable contrast in every bite. Almonds pair well with ingredients like roasted vegetables, goat cheese, and honey, enhancing the overall taste profile of the pizza. While not as widely used as other toppings, almond-topped pizzas can be found in various regions where nuts are commonly used in culinary creations.
8. Asiago cheese
Asiago cheese is a flavorful Italian cheese that is often used as a topping for pizzas. It is a semi-hard cheese with a rich and nutty taste. When grated or thinly sliced, Asiago cheese melts beautifully on top of a pizza, creating a savory and slightly tangy flavor profile. It adds a delightful depth of flavor to the overall dish and complements a wide range of ingredients. Asiago cheese is particularly popular in Italy, where it originated, and is commonly used in traditional Italian-style pizzas. It has also gained popularity in other countries with a strong appreciation for Italian cuisine, where it is valued for its distinct taste and versatility as a pizza topping.
Apricots are a sweet and tangy fruit that can add a unique twist to pizza. When used as a topping, apricots provide a burst of natural sweetness that contrasts with the savory flavors of the other ingredients. They can be thinly sliced or diced and scattered on the pizza before baking. The heat of the oven softens the apricots, intensifying their flavor and creating a delicious caramelized texture. Apricots work well with ingredients like goat cheese, prosciutto, and arugula, adding a fruity and refreshing element to the overall taste profile. While not as common as other pizza toppings, apricots can be found in gourmet or specialty pizzas in certain regions where they are appreciated for their unique flavor.
10. Aleppo pepper
Aleppo pepper is a type of chili pepper that originates from the region of Aleppo in Syria. It is named after the city and is known for its medium heat level and fruity, earthy flavor. Aleppo pepper is often used as a pizza topping, adding a mild spiciness and a subtle smoky undertone to the dish. The pepper can be sprinkled or dusted over the pizza before or after baking, depending on the desired intensity of heat. Aleppo pepper pairs well with a wide range of ingredients, including cheese, vegetables, and meats, bringing a unique flavor profile to the pizza. It is popular in Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisines and can be found in pizzas influenced by these culinary traditions.
11. Alfredo sauce
Alfredo sauce is a rich and creamy sauce made with butter, Parmesan cheese, and heavy cream. It is a popular pizza topping alternative to traditional tomato sauce, particularly in white pizza recipes. Alfredo sauce adds a luxurious and velvety texture to the pizza, creating a smooth and indulgent eating experience. The sauce pairs well with ingredients like chicken, spinach, and mushrooms, creating a delectable combination of flavors. Alfredo sauce is commonly associated with Italian-American cuisine and can be found in pizzerias and Italian restaurants across the United States and other countries influenced by Italian culinary traditions.
12. Al Pastor
Al Pastor is a popular pizza topping that features marinated pork cooked on a vertical rotisserie, similar to the technique used in Mexican cuisine for tacos al pastor. The marinated pork is typically seasoned with a combination of spices, such as chili, garlic, and pineapple, giving it a flavorful and slightly tangy taste. When used as a pizza topping, Al Pastor adds a deliciously tender and savory element to the dish. The combination of the juicy marinated pork, melted cheese, and other toppings creates a delightful fusion of flavors. This topping is particularly popular in Mexico and areas with a strong Mexican culinary influence, such as the southwestern United States.
13. Andouille sausage
Andouille sausage is a smoked sausage originating from France. It is made from seasoned pork meat, typically heavily spiced with ingredients such as garlic, pepper, and paprika. Andouille sausage is known for its bold and smoky flavor, which adds a distinctive taste to pizzas. The sausage is often sliced or crumbled and distributed across the pizza, infusing each bite with its robust flavors. Andouille sausage pairs well with ingredients like onions, bell peppers, and spicy sauces, contributing to the overall complexity and spiciness of the pizza. This topping is particularly popular in the southern United States and regions where Cajun and Creole cuisines are prevalent.
14. Amaranth leaves
Amaranth leaves, also known as callaloo or Chinese spinach, are dark green leafy vegetables with a slightly earthy and nutty flavor. These nutritious leaves can be used as a pizza topping, providing a vibrant burst of color and adding a fresh and herbaceous taste. Amaranth leaves are often sautéed or blanched before being added to the pizza, ensuring a tender texture while preserving their vibrant green color. They pair well with a variety of ingredients, including cheeses, tomatoes, and mushrooms, creating a balanced and nutritious combination. Amaranth leaves are popular in many cuisines around the world, including African, Caribbean, and Asian cuisines, and their use as a pizza topping may be found in regions influenced by these culinary traditions.
15. Aged balsamic vinegar
Aged balsamic vinegar is a rich and syrupy vinegar that has been aged in barrels for an extended period, typically ranging from 12 to 20 years. It offers a complex and sweet flavor with hints of fruitiness and caramelized notes. When used as a pizza topping, aged balsamic vinegar adds a touch of tanginess and acidity that complements the other ingredients. It can be drizzled over the pizza before or after baking, creating a flavorful glaze or finishing touch. Aged balsamic vinegar pairs well with ingredients like fresh tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, and basil, enhancing the overall taste profile. This topping is particularly popular in Italian cuisine and can be found in various regions where balsamic vinegar is produced, such as Modena and Reggio Emilia in Italy.
16. Ancho chili peppers
Ancho chili peppers are dried poblano peppers that are mild in heat and have a deep, smoky flavor with subtle fruity undertones. They are a popular ingredient in Mexican cuisine and are often used to add depth and complexity to dishes. When used as a pizza topping, ancho chili peppers bring a smoky and mildly spicy element to the pizza, infusing it with a distinct flavor profile. The peppers can be diced or thinly sliced and scattered across the pizza, adding both visual appeal and flavor. Ancho chili peppers pair well with ingredients like roasted meats, black beans, and corn, creating a delicious fusion of Mexican-inspired flavors. This topping is particularly popular in Mexican cuisine and can be found in regions where Mexican culinary influence is prevalent.
17. Anaheim peppers
Anaheim peppers, also known as California peppers, are mild chili peppers with a slightly sweet and tangy taste. They are named after the city of Anaheim in California, where they were first cultivated. Anaheim peppers are a versatile pizza topping that adds a mild heat and subtle flavor to the dish. They can be roasted, sliced, and distributed over the pizza, providing a pleasant kick without overwhelming spiciness. Anaheim peppers pair well with ingredients like tomatoes, cheese, and grilled vegetables, contributing to a well-balanced and flavorful pizza. This topping is popular in Southwestern and Mexican cuisines, particularly in regions where Anaheim peppers are grown and consumed.
18. Agave nectar
Agave nectar is a natural sweetener derived from the sap of the agave plant. It is a popular alternative to traditional sugars and sweeteners due to its mild taste and low glycemic index. When used as a pizza topping, agave nectar adds a touch of sweetness to the overall flavor profile. It can be drizzled over the pizza crust or used as a glaze for certain toppings. Agave nectar pairs well with ingredients like goat cheese, caramelized onions, and salty meats, creating a balanced combination of flavors. While not as common as other pizza toppings, the use of agave nectar can be found in certain gourmet or specialty pizzas that aim to incorporate unique and alternative flavors.
19. Avocado oil
Avocado oil is a healthy and flavorful oil derived from the pulp of the avocado fruit. It has a mild and buttery taste, making it a versatile ingredient for cooking and dressing. When used as a pizza topping, avocado oil adds a smooth and silky texture to the pizza, enhancing the overall mouthfeel. It can be drizzled over the pizza before or after baking, providing a subtle richness and nuttiness. Avocado oil pairs well with ingredients like roasted vegetables, fresh herbs, and creamy cheeses, adding depth and complexity to the flavors. While avocado oil is popular in various cuisines worldwide, it is particularly associated with Mediterranean and Mexican cuisines.
20. Adobo sauce
Adobo sauce is a traditional Mexican sauce made from a combination of chili peppers, vinegar, garlic, and various spices. It has a rich and smoky flavor profile with a moderate level of spiciness. When used as a pizza topping, adobo sauce brings a bold and tangy taste to the dish, adding a layer of depth and heat. It can be used as a base sauce or spread on the pizza crust, providing a savory and aromatic element. Adobo sauce pairs well with ingredients like grilled chicken, onions, and bell peppers, creating a fusion of Mexican flavors. This topping is particularly popular in Mexican cuisine and can be found in regions where Mexican culinary influence is strong.
Ajvar is a condiment originating from the Balkan region, particularly popular in countries like Serbia and Macedonia. It is a relish made from roasted red peppers and eggplant, blended with garlic, olive oil, and sometimes vinegar. Ajvar has a sweet and smoky flavor, offering a unique taste to pizzas. When used as a topping, ajvar adds a burst of Mediterranean flavors, complementing the other ingredients on the pizza. It can be spread on the crust or used as a sauce, providing a tangy and slightly sweet element. Ajvar pairs well with ingredients like feta cheese, olives, and grilled vegetables, contributing to a delightful blend of flavors. This topping is popular in Balkan cuisine and can be found in areas influenced by this culinary tradition.
22. Amaretti cookies (crumbled)
Amaretti cookies are traditional Italian almond cookies known for their crisp and slightly sweet taste. They are made from ground almonds, sugar, and sometimes egg whites, resulting in a crunchy texture and rich almond flavor. When used as a dessert pizza topping, amaretti cookies provide a unique and unexpected twist to the dish. The cookies are crumbled and sprinkled on top of the pizza, adding a delicate sweetness and a pleasant crunch. Amaretti cookies pair well with ingredients like ricotta cheese, fresh fruits, and drizzles of honey, creating a dessert-like pizza experience.
23. Acorn squash
Acorn squash is a winter squash variety known for its distinctive shape and sweet, nutty flavor. When used as a pizza topping, acorn squash adds a unique twist to the traditional flavors. The squash is typically roasted or sautéed before being added to the pizza, resulting in a tender and slightly caramelized texture. The natural sweetness of acorn squash pairs well with savory and salty ingredients, creating a delightful contrast of flavors. It is often combined with ingredients like caramelized onions, goat cheese, and sage to create a comforting and seasonal pizza experience. Acorn squash is popular in North America, particularly during the autumn and winter months when it is in season.
24. Applewood smoked bacon
Applewood smoked bacon is bacon that has been cured with smoke from applewood chips, resulting in a distinct smoky and slightly sweet flavor. When used as a pizza topping, applewood smoked bacon adds a savory and indulgent element to the dish. The bacon is typically cooked until crispy and then crumbled or cut into small pieces before being sprinkled over the pizza. Its smoky flavor pairs well with a variety of ingredients, such as caramelized onions, mushrooms, and spinach. The combination of the smoky bacon with the other flavors creates a delicious balance of saltiness and richness. Applewood smoked bacon is popular in North American cuisine and can be found on pizza menus across the United States.
Aioli is a Mediterranean sauce made from garlic, egg yolks, olive oil, and lemon juice or vinegar. It is similar to mayonnaise but with a stronger garlic flavor. When used as a pizza topping, aioli adds a creamy and garlicky element to the pizza. It can be spread over the dough before baking or drizzled on top after the pizza comes out of the oven. The rich and flavorful nature of aioli enhances the taste of other ingredients, such as roasted vegetables, grilled chicken, or seafood. While aioli originated in the Mediterranean region, it has gained popularity worldwide, particularly in European and North American cuisines.
Acorn squash is a type of winter squash characterized by its distinctive acorn-like shape. It has a sweet and nutty flavor, making it a delicious addition to pizzas. When used as a pizza topping, acorn squash is typically sliced or diced and pre-roasted to soften its texture. It adds a delicate sweetness and a subtle earthy taste to the pizza. Acorn squash pairs well with ingredients like caramelized onions, goat cheese, or arugula, creating a harmonious blend of flavors. While the use of acorn squash on pizza may not be as widespread as other toppings, it is appreciated in creative and gourmet pizza recipes. Its popularity is often associated with farm-to-table or seasonal cuisine, where local and seasonal produce takes center stage.
27. A1 Sauce
A1 Sauce is a brand of steak sauce that is typically used as a condiment for grilled or roasted meats. While it is not a traditional pizza topping, some people may experiment with using A1 Sauce as a flavor enhancer on certain pizza recipes. A1 Sauce has a tangy and slightly sweet taste with hints of vinegar, tomato, and spices. When used sparingly, it can add a bold and savory kick to the pizza, particularly when paired with meat toppings such as steak or ground beef. The use of A1 Sauce on pizza is not widespread and may be more of a personal preference or a creative twist in specific pizza creations.
28. Aleppo olives
Aleppo olives are a variety of olives that originated in the city of Aleppo in Syria. These olives have a unique flavor profile, characterized by a rich, fruity, and slightly tangy taste. Aleppo olives are commonly used as a pizza topping, adding a burst of Mediterranean flavors. The olives can be pitted and sliced or used whole, depending on personal preference. They pair well with ingredients like tomatoes, feta cheese, and fresh herbs, enhancing the overall taste of the pizza. Aleppo olives are popular in Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisines, and their use as a pizza topping can be found in regions influenced by these culinary traditions.
29. Anchovy paste
Anchovy paste is a concentrated form of anchovies that is commonly used as a flavor enhancer and seasoning in various dishes, including pizza. It is made by grinding and blending anchovies into a paste-like consistency. Anchovy paste adds a distinct umami flavor to pizza, providing a savory and salty taste. It is typically used sparingly due to its intense flavor, and a small amount can go a long way in enhancing the overall taste of the pizza. Anchovy paste pairs well with ingredients like tomatoes, olives, and capers, adding depth and complexity to the dish. It is particularly popular in Mediterranean and Italian cuisines, where it is commonly used in traditional recipes like the classic Caesar salad dressing and pizza sauces.