When it comes to conversations about the most popular food in America, pizza is always near the top of the list. The combination of tomato sauce and cheese on a crust base has been popular since the early 1900s when it was introduced to Americans by immigrants from Italy, where pizza originated.

Now, nearly 100 years later, you can find a pizza joint in almost any American city. But how can you tell which pizza is the best? What separates high-quality pizza from the cheap stuff? Here are five ways to know you’re eating quality pizza.

1. Fresh Ingredients

Before it even goes into the oven, the freshness of ingredients will make or break your pizza. The sauce quality is usually a good indicator of the freshness of your pizza. If fresh tomatoes were used, pizza sauce should be light red and taste like a garden tomato was crushed directly onto the crust.

Quality pizzerias make their tomato sauce from scratch rather than having it shipped from a provider. Look for the pizza with the best homemade pizza sauce, and you will be well on your way to finding quality pizza.

For vegetable toppings, the flavor is the best indicator of freshness. If the peppers, onions, or mushrooms don’t have much flavor, they probably aren’t very fresh. Veggies with bright colors and strong flavors indicate a quality pizza.

2. Balanced Flavor

A slice of pizza topped with melty cheese, fresh peppers, onions, and olives

One of the most critical parts of making a pizza is balancing the ingredients, especially the cheese and sauce. High-quality pizza will equally balance the flavors of the crust, sauce, and cheese. No one flavor should overpower another.
The toppings should also be balanced. Some restaurants will attempt to cover the low quality of their crust or sauce by overloading the pizza with veggies and meats. Find a pizzeria in Utah that uses toppings to enhance the overall flavor of their pizzas without stealing the show.

3. Delicious Crust

Cheap pizza will have a bland crust that does nothing more than hold the other ingredients. Pizza crust should taste delicious and bready, not like stale cardboard. If you are eating quality pizza, you won’t be able to resist eating the whole slice. A pile of bland crusts on your plate is a strong indicator you are eating cheap pizza.
The texture of the crust is also essential. The thickness and crispiness of the crust will depend on the style, and our favorite is New York-style pizza. New York-style pizza has a thin, foldable bottom crust and a thick, crisp crust on the sides. The crust is traditionally hand tossed and topped with fresh homemade pizza sauce and mozzarella cheese.

4. Perfectly Baked Cheese

A well-baked pizza won’t have any burnt cheese. The cheese can be slightly crispy without being charred. Any brown or crunchy cheese likely means the pizza was overcooked or the cheese wasn’t thick enough. Ideally, the cheese will form a thick, gooey, evenly spread layer that pulls apart when you grab a slice of the pizza.

Is your mouth watering yet?

Quality pizza will take more than a few seconds to prepare and cook. If you order takeout at a restaurant and they grab your pizza from a hotbox, it has probably been sitting there for long enough that it isn’t fresh anymore. Cheap pies are convenient but don’t have the same delicious flavor as quality pizzas.

5. A Clean Restaurant

The cleanliness of a restaurant can say a lot about the quality of their pizza. Restaurants that are clean and well maintained can generally be trusted to serve fresh pizza.

Many of the high-end restaurants that specialize in pizza have a wide variety of basic pizzas, specialty pies, or build-your-own options. If you are looking to try a new pizzeria in Utah, a family-friendly environment and an extensive menu are helpful hints that they serve quality pizza.

Try the Best Pizza in Utah at Fat Daddy’s Pizzeria

A Fat Daddy’s pepperoni and sausage pizza made with the best homemade pizza sauce

At Fat Daddy’s Pizzeria, we know it takes a lot to achieve pizza perfection. That’s why we combine the best ingredients with time-honored techniques to make our pizza the best pizza in Utah.

We make all of our dough from scratch, caramelize our onions, roast our vegetables, and cook our meats before they go on the pizza. Our New York-style pizza is a lunch and dinner favorite in Provo. Click here to learn more about our pizza or view Fat Daddy’s menu!

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