Why is Pizza Called Pie? Here’s Everything You Need to Know

By: the PROs

Why is Pizza Called Pie? Here’s Everything You Need to Know

Are you wondering why is pizza called pie?

This controversy is one of the most pressing issues among food lovers. You start questioning yourself and thinking you must have made a mistake, but you hear or see others call it a pie. 

This can be a bit confusing, especially since we typically associate pies with sweet desserts.

If you can call pizza a pie, does that mean it’s okay to call pie pizza? 

This argument stops you from having second thoughts. 

If you’re a pizza lover, we guess you’ve been looking for answers your whole life.

No worries! 

In this post, we’ll discuss why pizza is called pie, and let’s find out whether it is considered a pie.

Let’s get started!

History of Pizza

Pizza has roots in ancient civilizations in the Mediterranean region, such as Greece and Egypt, which had similar dishes.

However, the pizza we know and love today originated in Italy, specifically in the city of Naples. In the late 19th century, the Margherita pizza, a simple tomato, mozzarella, and basil pizza, was created and quickly gained popularity.

Pizza made its way to America as Neapolitan pizza by Gennaro Lombardi, an iconic figure who introduced pizza in New York. The Italian migrant sold tomato pizzas over the lunch hour in his grocery store in Manhattan from 1897. In 1905 he acquired a license to start a restaurant, which became the first pizzeria in America. 

The American pizzerias were influenced by the British settlers, who were used to calling savory dishes “pies.” In some regions, the use of the term “pie” has stuck around. This is how the term “pizza pie” came to be a colloquial term for pizza.

You can still find the term “pie” used in regional pizza variations, such as New Haven-style and New York-style pizza.

This goes to show how regional variations can affect the use of language.

As Italian pizza became more popular in the United States, it evolved and differentiated itself from traditional savory pies. While “pizza pie” remained a popular colloquial term, it became clear that pizza was a unique dish and no longer just a savory pie.

Today, the term “pie” is still used in some regional pizza variations, but it is mostly used as a colloquial term and does not reflect the dish’s origins.

So, when you hear someone refer to their pizza as a pie, know that they’re using a colloquial term that has been around for quite some time.

What is Pizza Pie?

Pizza pie is a dish that originated in Italy and is now popular worldwide. It consists of a dough base that is typically made from flour, water, yeast, and salt and is then topped with various ingredients such as tomato sauce, cheese, meats, vegetables, and spices.

The dough is usually baked in an oven at a high temperature until the cheese is melted and the crust is crispy. Pizza pie can come in different shapes and sizes and be cut into slices for individual portions.

There are many variations of pizza pie, including Margherita, Chicago Deep Dish Pizza, Hawaiian, pepperoni, and vegetarian. It is a staple food in many households and is commonly served in pizza restaurants.

Why is Pizza Called Pie?

The term “pizza pie” is primarily an American colloquialism, and it likely stems from the similarities between pizza and other types of pies. Both pizza and pies typically have a crust made from dough and are filled or topped with various ingredients. The major difference is that pies usually have a top crust or lattice, while pizzas are open-faced.

Over time, the term became a commonly used nickname for the dish and is still used today to describe a round flatbread.

“Pie” and “pizza” are commonly used interchangeably, even in recipes. 

In Italy, where pizza originated, the term “pie” is not commonly used to describe pizza. Instead, the word “pizza” is derived from the Italian word “pizzicare,” which means “to pinch” or “to pluck,” possibly referencing the action of shaping the dough or adding toppings to it.

However, in the United States, the similarities in shape, structure, and preparation between pizza and other pies led people to refer to it as a “pie.” This association is particularly strong in the case of deep-dish pizzas, such as the Chicago-style pizza, which has a thick crust and a substantial amount of toppings, making it resemble a traditional pie even more closely.

People may use the terms “pizza” and “pizza pie” interchangeably in everyday conversation. Still, it’s essential to note that the term “pie” is not commonly used to describe pizza outside of the United States.

It also has to do with the way pizza was first made. Early pizzas were made in pie-like pans and had thick crusts, similar to what you would find in a traditional pie. The term “pizza pie” stuck around and eventually became shortened to “pie,” — which is how we refer to it today.

This thick dough base gives pizza its unique texture and flavor, allowing you to enjoy a variety of toppings on top of it.

Since Italian Americans were the first to serve, invent and popularize tomato pizza, the Italian dish became known as “tomato pies” throughout the English-speaking world. 

This was because Italian Americans were the first ones to offer pizza. 

Since then, people have begun combining the terms and come out as “pizza pie.”

why is pizza called pie
Pizza Pie

Is Pizza a Pie?

Yes, pizza is often considered a type of pie, specifically a savory pie. The term “pie” generally refers to a dish that consists of a crust filled with various ingredients, which can be either sweet or savory. Pizza fits this definition, as it has a crust (typically made of dough) topped with sauce, cheese, and other ingredients.

In fact, you may have heard the term “pizza pie” used colloquially, particularly in the United States. While pizza is different from traditional fruit or custard pies, it still falls under the broader category of pies due to its structure and composition.

A pie is a baked dish where the primary ingredient is placed in the dish’s center and is often topped with a crust.

After the pizza dough has been topped with toppings like meat, cheese, and tomato, it is baked in the oven to create a pie. 

Therefore, pizza is considered a pie.

We think that explains why pizza is called pie.

Does Pizza Mean Pie in Italian?

Contrary to popular belief, pizza does not mean pie in Italian. Translated from the Italian language, the word pizza means pizza in English.

Italians call pizza by its proper name, and that’s it! 

When Italian immigrants first brought pizza to the United States, it was always referred to as either a tomato pie or an Italian pie. 

To clarify misunderstandings, “pizza” does not imply “pie” in Italian.

What Do They Call Pizza in Italy?

Since “Pizza” was invented in the 1800s, countries worldwide have made it. 

This only means Italy is included. 

So, the dish is called “pizza” in Italy; in the same manner, it is called pizza in every other country. 

However, it’s still up to you whether to call it pizza or if you have some other name for it, that’s fine.

The origins of the word pie go way back. In the early twentieth century, Italian immigrants in the United States made a dish called “pomidore” pizza. It was a circular, sliced food and was very popular, leading to people resembling it with pie.

The Difference Between a Pie and Pizza

Even though pizza and pie are often confused with each other, it’s essential to know their differences so you don’t end up questioning yourself or others.

pizza vs pie inforgraphic
Pizza vs Pie

What is a Pizza?

Pizza is a delicious dish that originated in Italy and is now enjoyed worldwide. It consists of a round, flat base of bread dough topped with tomato sauce, cheese, and other ingredients, such as meats, vegetables, or fruit. The toppings are baked in an oven until the cheese is melted and the pizza crust crispy.

Pizzas can come in wide varieties, with different sauces, cheeses, and toppings. Some popular pizza toppings include pepperoni, mushrooms, onions, and peppers, while others include pineapple, ham, and bacon. You can even create your own custom pizza with your favorite ingredients!

Pizzas are typically served in slices and can be eaten as a meal on their own or as a snack. They are a popular food choice for people of all ages and are often enjoyed at social gatherings, such as parties or picnics.

Pizza is a tasty and versatile food that is enjoyed by millions of people around the world. Whether you prefer a classic pizza Margherita or more creative toppings, there’s sure to be a pizza out there that you’ll love!

You mix wheat flour, yeast, olive oil, and water to make pizza. The dough is then shaped into a circle and used to create a pizza. 

Then, bake it in an oven with pizza sauce, mozzarella cheese, and other toppings that the person who ordered it wants. 

Pizza can have many different toppings, such as chicken, ham, pineapple, salami, vegetables, mushrooms, sausage, olives, and pepperoni, to name a few. 

Where you are on Earth can change how pizza looks and tastes. 

This is because almost every country has a unique way of making pizza.

But why is pizza called pie? Let’s find out what a pie is.

What is a Pie?

A pie is a baked dish with a pastry crust on the bottom and sides, filled with sweet or savory ingredients. The pastry crust is made from flour, fat (such as butter or shortening), and water and is rolled out and placed in a pie dish.

The filling can be made from various ingredients, including fruit, custard, pudding, meat, vegetables, or a combination.

Sweet pies, such as apple pie, pumpkin pie, or cherry pie, are usually served as a dessert, while savory pies, such as chicken pot pie or shepherd’s pie, are typically served as a main dish. Pies can be baked in various shapes, including round, square, or rectangular, and they can have a lattice, full top crust, crumble, or streusel topping.

One of the great things about pie is its versatility. There are so many different types of pies, with endless possibilities for fillings and toppings. Whether you prefer classic fruit pies or savory meat pies, there’s a pie that suits your tastes.

Pie is a delicious and comforting food that has been enjoyed for generations.

A pie is a baked good that looks like a round dish made of dough and can be filled with sweet or savory ingredients. 

There are many different shapes and sizes of pies that can be made. A pie must have a baked crust and be 2 inches tall and 8 inches in diameter.

Most pie crusts are made by mixing salt, flour, butter, and water. In the United States, pies must have a crust on the bottom, but they don’t have to have a crust on top. 

This differs from most pies in Europe, where there is always a top crust.

Even though some people confuse pie and tart, a tart usually has a thicker crust than a pie. 

Most pies are made of cheese, mushrooms, kidney, pumpkin, cream, beef, chicken, ale, chocolate, and apple. 

Pastries often contain mushrooms, apple, cream, and pumpkin ingredients. Mushrooms are also in some pies.

More on Why is Pizza Called Pie

Does a Pizza Have Other Names?

Pizza is one of the most popular foods globally, so it’s unsurprising that “Pizza” has been used in almost every conversation. 

Pizza doesn’t have a lot of different names or kinds if you count the various translations from other languages. 

Pie is used significantly more often than “pizza pie,” another term for pizza. It’s possible that the name “pizza pie” was chosen to avoid confusion with the slang word “pie.” 

Some people argue that the Vietnamese word “bánh,” which means “cake” or “pie,” is another aspect of the current “pizza vs. pie” debate since it translates to “cake.” However, this is not confirmed. 

Since it is made with bread, Vietnamese pizza is called “bánh Pizza.”

Is Pizza American or Italian?

To answer this question, you have to look into the history of pizza. After World War II ended in Italy, many Italians moved to the U.S., and American soldiers who had been in Italy during the war returned home. 

This gave pizza its first modern look. 

Pizza was first made in Italy, where people can find its roots. People added more toppings from the first pizza recipes in the United States and tried different ways to put them on. 

This change in perspective spread throughout the continent and the rest of the world. Sam Panopoulus was the first person to make Hawaiian pizza. 

He did this in 1962. He was born in Greece but lived in Canada when he was young. 

This started a debate over decades about whether pineapple should be on pizza. 

When Italian pizza was first brought to America, it quickly became a national symbol and the main ingredient of the country’s food. 

After that, they started sending pizza to many different countries and cultures, which gave them ideas for making the food more personal. 

Like burgers, American pizza slices have grown bigger and bigger over time, and now the world knows America for its huge pizza slices and deep-dish pizzas.

The Last Slice

There you go! 

We hope that you’ve learned why is pizza called pie. While people calling pizza a pie may not be normalized in every nation, pizza will always make your mouth water.

Whether you’re a pizza lover or someone passionate about baking, we hope you’ve learned something new about this post and found the answer to why pizza is called pie. 

When someone refers to a “pie,” they refer to the whole pizza, not just one slice. 

It’s a good indication that a person has Italian ancestry if they refer to a pizza as a “pie.”

See you again in the next post!

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