Why Is Pizza So Expensive? (11 Reasons Why)

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Maisie Hughes

Maisie Hughes is a 20-year veteran of the culinary world. She has worked as a chef in some of the most prestigious restaurants in the country, and she currently volunteers her time at local food banks.

Pizza is, without a doubt, one of the world’s renowned delicacies with over 30 billion pizzas being consumed annually worldwide.

One good thing about this delicacy that originated in Naples, Italy, is that it comes in numerous varieties and recipes. But why is pizza so expensive worldwide? I did in-depth research about this, and this is what I discovered.

Why Is Pizza So Expensive?

1. Ingredient Costs

The quality and the cost of ingredients that a restaurant uses to make pizza directly impact its pricing and quality.

For instance, while high-quality cheeses, such as Pule, Mozzarella, and Cheddar Cheese, bring perfect consistency to a pizza, they’re costly ingredients.

Thus pizzas made with these costly ingredients are expensive since restaurants must recover the additional costs to break even.

2. Labor Costs For Skilled Workers

It’s essential to note that making pizza is no mean task since it requires highly specialized labor and skilled staff.

These highly trained pizzaiolos and chefs are skilled workers and are reimbursed by pizzerias owners for their services and experience.

That’s why pizzerias offer their pizza at high prices to cover the labor costs of making the customer’s favorite delicacy.

Therefore, whenever you pay more for a slice of your favorite pizza, you ensure that these skilled workers get paid for their services and skills.

3. Quality Of The Toppings Used

Like ingredients, the quality of the toppings used to make a pizza determines how much you will pay for your favorite treat.

There are over 500 different pizza toppings that differ in price and quality. Typical pizza toppings include mushrooms, black olives, pepperoni, bacon, onions, sausage, and green peppers.

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Since these different toppings have distinct prices, the quality and type of pizza topping you select will determine how much you will pay.

For instance, green peppered topped pizza will cost significantly less than pepperoni pizza due to the quality and price of the topping used.

4. Increased Fuel Cost

Over the years, gas and petrol prices have continued to rise exponentially, affecting the delivery services of most pizza hubs.

Besides the delivery costs, increased fuel costs tend to increase the cost of delivering essential ingredients for making pizza.

Consequently, pizza sellers push these increased fuel costs to the consumer by increasing the prices of their pizzas.

5. High Prices Of Olive Oil

It’s worth noting that olive oil is one of the essential ingredients used to make pizza dough due to its quality.

However, olive oil is among the most expensive cooking oils since its retail price ranges between $15 and $30.

Thus, using the costly olive oil forces pizzerias to offer their pizza at a higher price than other menu items made using regular cooking oil.

6. Rental Costs

Rental Costs

While large pizza sellers such as Pizza Hut and Dominos can purchase land and build one of the branches, smaller pizzerias rent their spaces.

So, most of these small businesses are required to pay expensive annual or monthly rental costs as well as other mandatory bills such as electricity and water bills.

Due to the piling up of these bills, pizzerias owners push these costs back on the consumer, translating to high pizza prices.

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7. The Type Of Pizza

Typically, there’s a massive difference between a cheap and an expensive pizza based on the quality of toppings used, the type of cheese used, and how it’s baked.

For instance, expensive pizzas are made with high-quality toppings and cheese and are baked in wood-fired ovens to give them a smoky flavor.

On the other hand, cheap pizzas are made with low-quality toppings and cheese and baked in regular ovens as sellers look for ways to save on ingredients costs.

Therefore, if you are craving a high-quality pizza, you’ll have to dig deeper into your pockets.

8. Stiff Competition

When you think about competition among businesses, you might think that some pizza hubs would reduce their pizza prices to keep abreast of their competitors.

Unfortunately, this doesn’t apply in the food industry since they would be required to lower the quality of ingredients used and ruin their reputation.

Pizzerias compete among themselves by improving the quality of their pizzas, thus, increasing the prices of the customer’s favorite delicacy.

9. Location Of The Restaurant

The location where your to-go-to pizzeria is located determines how much you’ll pay to enjoy devouring your favorite food.

For instance, pizzerias located in the cities and towns tend to sell their pizzas cheaply compared to pizzerias located in upscale areas.

While pizzas sold at high-end restaurants have relatively the same taste as those sold in average eateries, they’re expensive since the high-end restaurants offer exquisite services.

10. Delivery Costs

Most pizzerias worldwide claim to offer free delivery services or charge meager delivery costs to their customers.

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But, unknown to many, these pizza hubs incorporate the delivery costs they incur on the overall price of their pizza to make profits.

Thus, the delivery costs incurred are accounted for in the pizza price, which explains why the famous delicacies are so expensive.

11. Use Of Wood And Coal Fired Stoves

It’s essential to note that most traditional pizzerias use wood-fired stoves and coals when making their signature and expensive pizzas.

While these traditional stoves bake uniquely flavored pizzas, they usually have high operational costs than modern ovens such as gas ovens.

Thus, pizzerias owners push down these high operational costs of the traditional stoves to the customer, increasing pizza prices.

To learn more, you can also read our posts on why Domino’s is so expensive, why Pizza hut is so expensive, and why Funyuns is so expensive.


Pizza is one of the world’s most sought-after food, but the delicacy has experienced price hikes worldwide, and its prices are expected to spike even further.

Thus, it would help to understand where the pizza selling business stands to know the real reasons why the popular delicacy is becoming expensive each passing day.

The reasons outlined above will go a long way in helping you understand the pizza selling landscape and anticipate the future.


  • Maisie Hughes

    Maisie Hughes is a 20-year veteran of the culinary world. She has worked as a chef in some of the most prestigious restaurants in the country, and she currently volunteers her time at local food banks.

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