30 of the Strangest Pizza Toppings from Around the Globe

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If you are a self-proclaimed foodie and an ardent explorer of culinary extremes, try embarking on a gastronomic journey to uncover the most unusual, sometimes bizarre, but always intriguing pizza toppings from around the world. Pizza, a universally loved dish, has proven to be a canvas for some of the most unexpected and daring flavor combinations. Let’s dive into the top 20 strangest pizza toppings that stretch the imagination and tantalize (or challenge) the taste buds.

1. Banana Curry Pizza: A Swedish Delight – Yes, you read that right. In Sweden, banana curry pizza is a unique fusion that combines sweet bananas with the rich, spicy flavors of curry. It’s a peculiar blend that somehow works, offering a sweet and savory experience.

2. Kangaroo Pizza: Hop into Flavor – Australians are known for their love of unique meats, and kangaroo pizza is no exception. Lean and gamey, kangaroo meat adds a wild twist to the traditional pizza.

3. Crunchy Cicadas: An Insect Invasion – In some parts of the United States, cicadas have made their way from the trees to the pizza toppings. These crunchy critters are said to add a nutty flavor to your slice.

4. Crocodile Topper: A Bite of the Wild – Continuing with Australia’s exotic meats, crocodile-topped pizzas offer a taste that’s often described as a cross between chicken and crab. It’s a must-try for the adventurous foodie.

Haggis Pizza in Scotland
Haggis Pizza in Scotland

5. Haggis Heaven: Scotland’s Pride – In Scotland, haggis, the national dish made from sheep’s offal mixed with oats and spices, finds its way onto pizzas, adding a hearty and peppery punch.

6. Reindeer Delicacy: A Finnish Favourite – Smoked reindeer meat is a popular topping in Finland, offering a rich and smoky flavor that’s perfect for those cold Nordic nights.

7. Green Peas Galore: A Brazilian Twist – Brazilians add green peas to their pizzas, introducing a sweet and earthy flavor that pleasantly contrasts with more traditional toppings.

smoke salmon thin crispy italian pizza with black caviar
smoked salmon thin crispy Italian pizza with black caviar

8. Caviar and Blinis: Russia’s Luxurious Bite – For a truly opulent pizza experience, some Russian pizzerias top their pies with caviar and blinis, offering a decadent and salty burst of flavor. (read more about that gastronomic delight caviar)

9. Squid Ink Spread: Japan’s Dark Secret – Squid ink as a pizza topping in Japan is as dramatic in appearance as it is in taste. It offers a briny, sea-infused flavor that’s unforgettable.

10. Mockba Pizza: A Russian Cold Cut – This cold pizza, topped with mixed seafood like sardines, tuna, and salmon, is a Russian specialty for those who love a seafood medley.

Durian cheese pizza
Durian cheese pizza

11. Durian: Southeast Asia’s Polarizing Fruit – This pungent, custard-like fruit is used as a topping in Southeast Asia. It’s a divisive choice – you either love it or you don’t.

12. Poutine Pizza: Oh, Canada! – In Canada, poutine pizza marries two comfort foods into one, combining crispy fries, cheese curds, and gravy on a pizza base.

13. Pickle Pizza: An American Quirk – Pickles on pizza have become a trend in some parts of the U.S., often paired with a drizzle of ranch dressing for a tangy, creamy experience.

14. Scorpion Topping: Asia’s Daring Choice – Scorpion-topped pizzas offer a crunchy texture and are said to come with health benefits, making them a popular choice in some Asian countries.

15. Sauerkraut Surprise: A German Twist – Sauerkraut on pizza adds a tangy and slightly fermented flavor, which is surprisingly refreshing and pairs well with meaty toppings.

16. Tropical Coconut: Costa Rica’s Sweet Addition – In Costa Rica, coconut is sometimes sprinkled on pizzas, adding a sweet, tropical note that’s delightfully unexpected.

17. Venison: New Zealand’s Gamey Gourmet – Venison, or deer meat, is a favored topping in New Zealand, known for its rich, complex flavor.

18. Seafood Mix: A Japanese Sea Adventure – Japan takes seafood pizza to the next level with toppings like squid, octopus, and eel, creating a sea-flavored feast on a crust.

19. French Fries and Hot Dogs: Middle Eastern Fusion – This combination might sound like a fast-food overload, but in parts of the Middle East, it’s a popular and indulgent pizza topping.

pizza with pear topping
Roman pizza with cheese and pear Italian cuisine

20. Pear and Gorgonzola: A Gourmet Western Twist – While not the strangest, this sweet and savory combo is a testament to how far the boundaries of pizza toppings can be pushed in Western cuisine.

21.  Chocolate and Marshmallow: In some places, pizza is given a sweet twist with the addition of chocolate spread and marshmallows, making for a dessert-like treat.

21.  Zucchini Flowers: Popular in Italy, zucchini flowers are a delicate and gourmet topping, often paired with mozzarella and anchovies.

Pizza with mussels, squid rings, olives, lemon and cheese
Pizza with mussels squid rings olives lemon and cheese

23.  Mussels and Clams: Seafood lovers might enjoy this topping, popular in coastal regions, which features fresh mussels and clams, sometimes with a garlic and white wine sauce.

24.  Pear and Blue Cheese: A combination that balances sweet and tangy flavors, offering a sophisticated twist on traditional pizza toppings.

25.  Spam: In some parts of Asia, particularly in South Korea, Spam is a popular pizza topping, appreciated for its salty, meaty flavor.

26.  Beetroot and Feta: A health-conscious choice, this combination offers a sweet and salty flavor profile, often garnished with fresh arugula.

27.  Buffalo Chicken and Blue Cheese: Popular in the United States, this topping features spicy buffalo chicken paired with creamy blue cheese.

28.  Eggplant and Honey: A unique combination where the savoriness of eggplant meets the sweetness of honey, creating a harmonious blend of flavors.

29.  Octopus and Paprika: A topping inspired by Mediterranean cuisine, combining tender octopus with the smoky flavor of paprika.

30.  Pumpkin and Pine Nut: Especially popular in autumn, this topping combines roasted pumpkin with crunchy pine nuts, often complemented with spices like sage or cinnamon.

Embracing the Unusual

This roundup of the world’s strangest pizza toppings is a reminder of how diverse and adventurous our global palate can be. From the daringly exotic to the surprisingly delightful, each topping tells a story of cultural uniqueness and culinary creativity. As a food enthusiast, you can’t help but be excited about the endless possibilities that lie on a pizza crust, waiting to be explored. Whether it’s a slice of banana curry pizza from Sweden or a piece of durian-topped pie from Southeast Asia, the world of pizza toppings is an endless adventure for the taste buds!

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