The Untold Truth Of Pizza

It's hard not to love the cheesy doughy deliciousness of pizza. In fact, 93 percent of Americans eat at least one slice of pizza per month. But as much as you love pizza, how much do you really know about it? Here are the most scrumptious secrets pizza has to tell.

Americans eat even more pizza than you thought

Americans love their pizza. In fact, 350 slices of pizza are eaten in the U.S. every second. The average American eats 46 slices of pizza per year, and 300 billion pizzas are sold in the U.S. every single year. That is a lot of cheese and sauce!

There's a secret pizza language

You may be surprised to learn that pizza makers speak a secret pizza language. You know how sometimes you pick up a slice of pizza and all of the toppings slide off? That's called an avalanche. The leftover pizza crusts on a plate are known as bones, and soggification is when the pizza dough gets soggy from too much sauce or condensation.

If you're ever getting a pizza and you hear the words "Reggie alert," that means they think you're a tourist and are preparing for the worst. Prove them wrong by ordering quickly and cleaning up your table when you're done eating.

Pizza has been used as a weapon

Think the only thing that's dangerous about pizza is the fat content? Think again. When challenged by armed robbers in Miramar, Florida, a smart pizza delivery man used a large pepperoni pizza as a weapon.

He threw the hot pizza at his assailants and ran away. One shot was fired as he fled, but he was able to get away safely. The three teenage robbers weren't as lucky. They were later arrested and charged with armed robbery.

The Hawaiian pizza was invented in Canada

More than once, I've thought that whoever came up with putting pineapple on pizza was a genius. Even though the ham and pineapple topped pizza is dubbed a Hawaiian, it wasn't invented by a Hawaiian — or even someone from a tropical location.

The inventor of the Hawaiian pizza, Sam Panopoulos, is actually a Greek man who opened a pizza restaurant in Canada. One day in 1962, he was searching for inventive pizza toppings when he decided to open a can of pineapple. In that moment, he birthed one of the most controversial pizza topping combinations ever.

In fact, it's so controversial that heads of state have commented on it. In February 2017, Iceland's president, Gudni Thorlacius Johannesson, said he wanted to ban pineapple on pizza. He later retracted the statement in a Facebook post. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau responded by tweeting "I have a pineapple. I have a pizza. And I stand behind this delicious Southwestern Ontario creation. #TeamPineapple"

NASA's 3D printer can make pizza in less than 5 minutes

NASA has accomplished many incredible things. They sent a man to the moon, invented Super Soakers, and made the International Space Station. But one of their most interesting inventions is a 3D printer that makes pizza in under five minutes.

The printer is called the BeeHex and can produce any type of pizza in any shape — even in the shape of Donald Trump's head. Apparently the crust is very thin, though, so you need to scarf that pizza down quickly before it gets cold.

The first U.S. pizza shop is still in operation in New York

If you want a slice of authentic New York pizza, head to Little Italy in Mangattan. Lombardis, the first pizza joint in the U.S., opened its doors in 1905 on Spring Street, and it remains there to this day. Their pizza, baked in the same oven they used in 1905, is simple, with just fresh mozzarella and basil topping their red sauce.

In 2015, Lombardis celebrated their 110th anniversary by selling their pizza at the 1905 price  of five cents a pie — they had a line down the street.

There's a pizza Olympics

If you would love to be in the Olympics but are hopelessly unathletic, you'll be excited to learn about a different kind of international competition — the World Pizza Games. Events include Freestyle Acrobatic Dough Tossing, Largest Dough Stretch, and Fastest Pizza Box Folding. Competitors, called pizzaiolos, receive cash prizes for coming in first place.

Macaulay Culkin started a pizza-themed cover band

Remember Macaulay Culkin, the cute kid from Home Alone? Well, he's moved on to another creative endeavor, namely starting a band called The Pizza Underground. His band takes The Velvet Underground songs and changes the lyrics to make them about pizza.

The band's songs include "Papa John Says," "I'm Beginning to Eat the Slice" and "All the Pizza Parties." Watch Culkin and his bandmates decked out in sunglasses, singing in front of a pizza background, with slices hanging from the ceiling.

The world's largest pizza was gluten-free

The largest pizza in the world, baked in December of 2012,  was almost 14,000 square feet in size and contained about 20,000 pounds of gluten-free flour. The pizza, made in Rome, bore the name Ottavia to honor the first Roman emperor, Octavian Augustus. The pizza makers decided to make it gluten-free to bring awareness to celiac disease.

You can buy a pizza neck lanyard

Have you ever wanted to take a slice of pizza to go and didn't know what to do with it? You can wrap it in a napkin, but the cheese will stick to it. You could put it in a box, but they're big and unwieldy. Luckily for you, there's another option — the Pizza Pouch.

You can now take your pizza to go and then wear it around your neck for safekeeping. According to Stupidiotic, the makers of the Pizza Pouch, you'll also look more attractive with a pizza dangling around your neck. My dog would definitely agree with that.

A robocop pizza delivery stopped a suicide

Pizza is so delicious, it literally saved a life. In April of 2015, a man was about to jump from a Silicon Valley freeway overpass to his death, causing a standoff for over five hours. The California Highway Patrol shut down traffic on two busy interstates during rush hour as they tried to talk the man down and convince him to turn himself in.

The police didn't want to force a confrontation with the man because he was holding a knife, so they decided to send a phone over to him with a robot. They chose to deliver pizza along with the phone and told him that if he wanted the pizza, he would have to pick up the phone. The man complied, and they were able to take him into custody.

Pizza Hut delivered a pizza to space

In 2001, Pizza Hut made the most over-the-top pizza delivery ever when they sent a pizza to the International Space Station (ISS).

They delivered it on the rocket that was used to resupply the ISS. Pizza Hut paid the Russian space agency $1 million for the delivery, as well as footage of Yuri Usachov, a Russian cosmonaut, giving a thumbs up after eating the pizza and placing the Pizza Hut logo on a rocket. They couldn't put pepperoni on the pizza, as it would have gone bad, but they did add extra spices so that Usachov could fully enjoy his salami pizza.  

DNA from a pizza crust was used to catch a serial killer

Lonnie Franklin Jr., the "Grim Sleeper" serial killer, murdered at least ten women, and possibly up to 25, before he was caught by the Los Angeles Police Department. It took them almost 25 years to catch him, and the conclusive DNA came from a pizza crust he left on his plate while attending a birthday party.

Months before, they had linked DNA from the murder scenes to Franklin's son Christopher's DNA after he was picked up for possession of felony weapons. Undercover officers then followed Franklin to the birthday party, where an officer acting as a busboy collected his pizza crust and plate, which had enough DNA to finally convict him of murder. He was convicted and sentenced to death row at the San Quentin State Prison.

The first pizza delivery ever was to a queen

Legend has it that the first pizza delivery ever was to Queen Margherita on a visit to Naples. The queen was tired of eating French food and asked for some local fare, so her attendants told the most famous pizza chef in town to make a pizza and deliver it to her.

Raffaele Esposito, the owner of Pizzeria Brandi, made three pizzas, one of which was the colors of the Italian flag, with red sauce, white mozzarella cheese, and basil on it. The queen loved the pizza and said it was one of the best things she had ever eaten. Esposito named the pizza after her, calling it Margherita.

Costco pizza is made by robots

If you've ever wondered how Costco can make their pizza so quickly, and why it's so good, here's your answer: Much of the process of making the pizza is done by robots. First, a worker places a ball of dough on a pan, which is put into a machine that automatically presses it down and heats it. Then, they stretch the dough out and put it into another robot-like machine that automatically covers it with the perfect amount of sauce. The only thing that's left to do is add cheese and toppings before putting it into the oven.