There’s only one thing in this world more divisive than politics, and that’s pizza, specifically when it comes to toppings, particularly when it comes to pineapple. Does the tart-tasting yellow fruit belong on your beloved pie? Or does the mere thought of ananas drive you bananas? People on the internet have opinions, of course.

Reactions on reddit from Team No-Pineapple range from a mere “No” to a stronger “No no never no no,” to a “Hard pass” and an “Absolutely disgusting 🤢 🤮,” with one person even declaring its presence “A sin against God.”

Pizza professionals and pizzaiolos tend to be a bit more empathetic in their opinions:

“It’s not my style—I don’t love it, but I’m not opposed to it,” says soccer player turned pizzaiolo Massimo Laveglia of L’Industrie Pizza, whose beautiful basil and burrata topped slices are found in Brooklyn and now the West Village.

Legendary pizzaiolo Chris Bianco of Pizzeria Bianco in Phoenix and Los Angeles echoes Laveglia’s sentiments: “I don’t use it, but I’m not against it,” he says.

Joe Beddia doesn’t do pineapple at his eponymous Pizzeria Beddia in Philadelphia, but would use them under one condition: “If I ever have a pizzeria in a place where pineapples grow, then I will,” he says.

Meanwhile in Seattle, chef-turned pizzaiolo Khampaeng Panyathong is on Team Pineapple. In fact, he’s so pro-pineapple, he opened a pizzeria last fall called Ananas Pizzeria (Ananas is the original name of the fruit).

“I originally wanted to call it Pineapple Pizzeria—I really just wanted to say ‘fuck you’ to people who would hate on you for liking pineapple on pizza,” says Panyathong.

Pineapple pizza is mostly associated with ‘Hawaiian Pizza’ of course, where pineapple chunks come combined with either ham or bacon. Confusingly, Hawaiian pizza actually was invented in Canada by a Greek guy by the name of Sam Panopoulos in the early 1960s—he was inspired by the sweet and salty flavor combinations found in Chinese cuisine and wanted to do something different culinarily. What’s more, pineapples aren’t even native to Hawaii—they originated in South America before they were brought to the Aloha State. The more you know.

In recent years, pineapple on pizza has continued to cause controversy around the world; in 2017, the president of Iceland threatened to ban pineapple as a pizza topping, while more recently, Italy has become divided over famed pizzaiolo Gino Sorbillo’s introduction of pineapple to his pizzeria in Naples, the birthplace of pizza itself.

If you want to know what I think, I’ll say this much: I’m not into rules when it comes to food, and if there are any, I’m all for breaking them in the name of deliciousness. Don’t yuck my yum, and I won’t yuck yours.

Pizza is art, and a stretched out piece of dough is a blank canvas for creativity. And as I’ve been traveling the country the last few years reporting for our Best New Restaurants in America and Best Bars lists, I’ve managed to squeeze in quite a few pizzerias where chefs are displaying their own spins on the so-called ‘Hawaiian Pizza.’

Pizzaiolos aren’t just dumping syrupy chunks out of a can—they’re breaking down fresh pineapple into razor thin cuts, roasting and caramelizing the pieces beforehand; they’re using different salty cuts of pork like capicola and topping with other interesting items to complement and cut through the fruit’s sweetness. The below are just a few of the special ones I’ve found around the nation that might make you consider Team Pineapple.

a pizza on a paper towel

Carly Hackbarth

Flour + Water’s ode to the Hawaiian pizza.

San Francisco

From the same folks who brought you the pasta palace that is the now 15-year-old Flour + Water comes their stand-alone pizzeria in North Beach, which opened in the summer of 2023. Here they’re pumping out thin and crispy 13-inch pizzas and slinging slices in the back. Their ode to the Hawaiian has slivers of herby capicola, aka gabagool, instead of ham and contains pineapple sliced so thin it practically melts into the into the sauce. Pickled fresno chilies as well as chili crunch help this pie hit all the salty, sweet, and spicy notes.



The Anachovy pizza at Ananas incorporates anchovies and pineapples.


Laotian by descent and born in a Thai refugee camp before coming to Seattle with his family, Chef Khampaeng Panyathong runs the Laotian restaurant Taurus Ox in addition to his Ananas Pizzeria, which offers a safe-space for those in Team Pineapple. In addition to offering a heritage-driven pie that features khao soi pork and bamboo shoots, consider the Ananchovy, which comes with a thin layer of pineapple that covers the entire pie, a whole can of salty anchovies to counteract the sweetness, and a drizzle of reduced spiced rum pineapple syrup to bring it all together.

a pizza in a box

Matt Haas

A pie from Pizza Matta with slagel ham, caramelized pineapples, AND giardinara.


From Chef Jason Vincent, the same gentleman behind the Logan Square restaurant Giant and Chef’s Special Cocktail bar, is Pizza Matta which opened in April of 2023. Although the Hawaiian isn’t specifically on the menu, people can go DIY and add little medium dices of pineapple that are caramelized on the plancha next door at Giant as well as minimally treated, hickory smoked ham. Go ahead, add on giardiniera, because Chicago.

a pizza with vegetables and cheese

Vivian Leba

Nonno’s Pizza Tavern’s Maui Wowee.


Speaking of The Windy City, you can find a fun take on Hawaiian pizza at Nonno’s, our Pizzeria of The Year in 2023. The retro cool pizzeria offers Houstonians a taste of thin and crispy square cut Chicago tavern style pizza, and their Maui Wowee is topped with similarly thin slices of pineapple, thin square slices of SPAM, and thin coins of smoked jalapeno. Save some quarters for the arcades.


Ben Roberts played in a punk rock band and cooked in some of the best kitchens in California’s capital before getting into the pizza game, and inside of white tiled, baby-blue-colored walls of his Pizza Supreme Being, he’s pumping out naturally-leavened sourdough pies. His Hawaiian features slices of fresh jalapeno and thin slices of pineapple, but the real innovation is the addition of little pieces of SPAM that that provide a nice textural contrast.

a pizza

Johnny Lynch

Pizza Tropical’s La Hawaiiana.

New York

Find a little slice of Miami in Brooklyn at Pizza Tropical, which was opened by the wonderful animated pizzaiolo Frank Pinello of Best Pizza in Williamsburg. Inside the yellow and red painted stand you’ll find pies by the whole and slice—their La Hawaiiana comes sans sauce and topped with not one two types of pineapple (fresh and caramelized), spicy pepperoni, fresh mozzarella, parsley, and a drizzle of hot chili oil.

New York

Paulie Gees needs no introduction, and there you can find slice shops and franchises outside of New York, the OG location with its wood-fired pies in Greenpoint will always have a special place in our hearts. The Bubba Guy has smoky crispy bacon, fresh jalapenos for heat, and little pieces of pickled pineapple that pop. Another win for Team Pineapple.

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