It's A Mistake To Deny This Extra Love For Your Pizza Toppings

Pizza may be a traditional Italian food, but there's no denying that Americans love it as if it's their own. According to The Washington Post, 100 acres worth of pizza is consumed in the United States daily. On an annual basis, that equates to 3 billion pizzas and a whopping 251.7 million pounds of pepperoni. Need we say more?

From California Pizza Kitchen and Lou Malnati's to Pizza Hut and Little Caesars, there are so many places to order this household staple all over the country. Even though pizza is the quintessential takeout food, it's very possible, and sometimes arguably even better, to whip up a homemade pie in your own kitchen. If you've struggled with making pizzas in the past, try to avoid these mistakes you've been making with your homemade pizza. Sometimes, what it comes down to is purchasing higher quality ingredients, and not just gourmet cheese, dough, and sauce, but elevated toppings too.

You should pre-cook any toppings that you wouldn't typically eat uncooked

If you are an Ina Garten fan, you'll know that she often uses the adjective "good" in front of certain ingredients in her recipes (via Kitchn). That's because the Barefoot Contessa knows that better ingredients lead to better meals! The same rule should be applied to all of the ingredients you need to create a homemade pizza, including the toppings. As Pro Home Cooks says your toppings deserve special treatment too. The last thing you want is for your pizza to be marred by subpar toppings.

While pizza toppings depend on preference, Chung explained how to take certain store-bought toppings to the next level. To elevate mushrooms, pre-cook them in a pan with butter and salt. Similarly, to make spinach more gourmet and flavorful, you can sauté it in some olive oil and garlic. With toppings, a good rule of thumb to follow is to pre-cook anything that you wouldn't typically eat uncooked, like raw sausage or onions.

To give your 'za a bite of freshness, Kitchn recommends peppering on some crisp herbs, like arugula or basil. Placing the herbs on your pizza as soon as it's taken out of the oven is the best way to slightly melt the herbs and extract their natural flavor.