One of the most remarkable features of a pizza is its customizability. While the thickness of the trust, the type of sauce and the type of cheese are all important factors, the choice of toppings is the most personal aspect of the entire dish. Common toppings such as pepperoni, mushrooms, sausage, olives and bacon are widely used and universally recognized as proper toppings. However, there is a stark divide over whether a certain topping is acceptable upon any pizza whatsoever: pineapple. Given the internet’s obsession with the topic, it is essential to acknowledge why it is such a controversial topic in the first place.
The attribute that sets pineapple apart from nearly every other topping is the fruit’s blatancy in terms of sweetness. While the tomato paste occasionally delivers hints of sweetness upon consumption, pineapple is unique in that it is the only pizza topping with sweetness as its defining characteristic. When combined with the tartness of the tomato sauce and savor of the cheese, the juxtaposed flavors produce an immaculate taste that is unlike any other dish.
As a dish traditionally dominated by savory flavors, many people are hesitant to incorporate the topping. Pineapple can serve as a great change of pace for those who are tired of the same old pepperoni pizza at each social gathering or for those looking to expand their palette. Most commonly, pineapple is paired with ham in what is best known as a Hawaiian pizza. For an even more powerful flavor experience, ingredients such as cilantro, onion and barbecue sauce are also often added.
A common criticism of pineapple on pizza is the water content of the fruit. Pineapples consist of over 87% water, which can make the pizza soggy as a result. However, this issue can be countered by grilling the pineapple and therefore draining it of its excessive water content. This also makes for a more satisfying texture that pairs well with other toppings like ham and pepperoni.