The Untold Truth Of Toppers Pizza

The one food that almost everyone can agree belongs at a birthday party or game day celebration is pizza. This Naples-originating food is a fan favorite to many, and while we might be picky about what we think the best pizza toppings are, there's no doubt that there's a pizza for everyone out there. Pizza is a fun dish to customize and make at home, though more often than not, you're likely ordering the cheesy meal from one of the many pizza chains in the country, waiting patiently by your front door for the delivery guy to arrive with a hot, square-shaped box.

While the first two chains that come to mind might be Pizza Hut or Papa John's, there are a huge number of pizza delivery chains across the United States. One pizza delivery store that might not be as well known as the others is Toppers Pizza chain. Heavily centered in the upper Midwest, anyone who's had the chance to try a slice of their food will tell you that Toppers is just as good, if not better, than some of the leading brands. Since it's not as spread out as Dominos or Little Caesars, there's a lot about Toppers that you might not be aware of. In order to help you out, and possibly pique your interest in this pizza brand, lets dive into the untold Truth of Toppers Pizza.

The founder loved pizza enough to quit school

There's no denying how much we love pizza — according to The Washington Post, the equivalent of 100 acres of pizza is consumed daily in the U.S. But even if there's a lot we would do to get a slice of pizza, we aren't sure if we'd want to dedicate our entire lives to the food. The same can't be said about the creator of Toppers Pizza, who knew from a very young age that his life would be all about pizza. Scott Gittrich, the founder and current CEO of the Toppers pizza chain, started off like most American college students working a part-time job. Unlike many, however, he made a decision that would change the course of his life forever.

According to the Toppers "Our Story" page, Gittrich attended the University of Illinois in 1984, and at the same time took up a job in pizza delivery. Just two weeks into the job, the man was in love, and chose to drop out of college to continue the pursuit of a pizza career. It would be seven years after his first delivery that Gittrich would open the first Toppers, though it never would have happened if he didn't choose to take the risk of dropping out of college. While we advise caution with most people when considering dropping out of school, it seems that in the case of Scott Gittrich, it was a choice that paid off.

Toppers' dessert menu has both custard and monkey bread

Pizzas are synonymous with parties, so naturally, it's difficult to imagine having a slice of pepperoni or cheese pizza without it being accompanied by some sort of sweet treat. While some people have cake, one of the greatest things to pair a hot pizza with is ice cream, as this pairing menu at The Kitchn attests. Even though this might be a bit of a heavy meal put together, it's always fun to treat yourself with a savory pizza and a cold dessert. Toppers has a fun selection of desserts, and not just the cinnamon sticks that are quite similar to the ones from Papa John's. Recently, Toppers added three flavors of custard to their menu, including a classic Wisconsin vanilla, lava cake, and "Almost S'mores."

This isn't the only sugary surprise Toppers has in store. Along with their custard, the pizza chain also offers monkey bread. Though generally eaten as a breakfast pastry, monkey bread is a surprisingly great dessert to indulge upon after finishing up your pizza. Like the custard, Toppers has three different kinds of monkey bread: cinnamon, chocolate and cream, and raspberry cheesecake. While ice cream and custard aren't anything new when it comes to rounding out a satisfying pizza meal, Toppers definitely puts a unique spin on their food menu with the addition of a soft, delicious monkey bread.

The founder worked at another well-known franchise before creating Toppers

There are dozens of pizza chains across the country. Toppers is one among many of these brands, but its creation was only possible thanks to one of these other pizza companies. When founder Scott Gittrich dropped out of college, he was working for one of the more well-known pizza chains across the country — and he started out not in the kitchen, but as a delivery man.

Before he created his well-received pizza company, Gittrich worked for Domino's. Domino's has been around for over 20 years longer than Toppers, giving Gittrich plenty of time to learn the cheese, sauce, and inner workings of all things pizza. On his Linkedin page, Gittrich writes that "The gamble paid off as I worked my way up through the company's system, eventually managing all operations." Even though the Toppers founder has to give Domino's a bit of credit for his success, the company's Twitter page still likes to poke fun at the other company. Nevertheless, Toppers truly does show that one good thing can inspire another — and in this case, that means more pizza.

Toppers has vegan and plant-based options

In a world full of various diets, a rise in consumer products that cater to an individual's specific palate and lifestyle has been the trend of recent years according to Sentientmedia. At this point, you can find burgers without any meat, pasta without any gluten, and even non-dairy versions of typical dairy products. One diet that has seen tremendous growth over the past few years is the vegan diet, which is different from vegetarianism, as it focuses on avoiding any foods that are derived from animals, including things like eggs, milk, and honey, not just meat (per Verywell Fit). It's difficult to imagine what pizza would taste like without any real cheese, but even Toppers has managed to hop onto the trend of having plant-based products on its menu.

Toppers has a long list of vegan-friendly toppings, as well as two pizzas that are topped with dairy-free mozzarella. More recently, they've paired with both Beyond Meat and CAULIPOWER to add more plant-based items to their lineup. According to, the pizza chain has added Buffalo Chicken-Less Topper pizza and a Vegan Nashville Hot & Crispy pizza, which are both made with plant-based products. They also have meat-free chicken tenders, made with Beyond Meat. Vegan and meatless foods are certainly becoming more prevalent in popular food chains (via HuffPost), so it's nice to know that even Toppers is expanding its menu to include something for everyone.

Toppers has made some major investments in technology

While Toppers might be most well-known for their incredible pizza, the company has made some pretty interesting business investments. Many restaurants have been hit hard during the COVID-19 pandemic (via Fortune). However, because fewer people were trying to eat inside restaurants, many fast-food chains seemed to benefit (via Insider). And thanks to investments they'd made in their technology (in addition to expanded menu options), Toppers has not only weathered the pandemic, but seen consistent growth in sales.

According to an interview by the BizTimes, Scott Gittrich claims that the company "spent several million dollars to build our own point-of-sale, e-commerce, cloud-data system and completed rolling that out to the entire store footprint in the middle of 2020." He adds that financial investments in technology will only help improve the customer experience and allow Toppers to spread to further parts of the country. This seems to be the case, as the company plans to open three stores every year, and Gittrich believes that 3,000 Toppers stores will soon be scattered across the country (As per QSR Magazine.) Thanks to these investments, it seems that there's only growth in Toppers' future.

While they may be a pizza place, they have great mac and cheese, too

One of the best parts about pizza is the cheese. While bucket loads of dairy deliciousness isn't the most healthy, in moderation cheese is an excellent source of calcium, fat, and protein, among other nutritional perks (via Healthline). 

Despite gaining its reputation for thier pizza, Toppers also prides itself on another cheesy food: mac and cheese. Toppers boasts a decadent Mac N Cheese Pizza, which is topped with the comfort food favorite. But you don't have to get your mac and cheese on a pizza — the brand has a selection of five different mac and cheese sides. In addition to a classic version, if you want something a bit more unique, the pizza place also offers a variety of mac toppings, some with a bit more protein, and others with a lot more spice. Their Loaded Tater Mac actually comes topped with tater tots and bacon, while the Jalapeno Popper Mac offers the jolting taste of some spicy hot jalapenos. We don't usually see pizza chains offer fleshed-out mac and cheese dishes alongside their pizzas, so the fact that Toppers manages to do both truly shows just how dedicated they are to giving the people carbs and cheese in whatever form they want.

Even a football star is dedicated to this pizza company

Even though pizza isn't considered a healthy food, that won't stop us from enjoying a slice or two on game day. And even though they probably shouldn't have pizza right before a big game, it's safe to say that even the most fit of sports stars may like to enjoy a piece of pizza from time to time — and sometimes more often than that. One NFL football star loves it enough to actually make pizza a part of his career for the rest of his life.

Indianapolis Colts player Jonathan Taylor, who in college was a running back for the Wisconsin Badgers, actually co-owns four Toppers franchises, which he received after signing a lifetime endorsement deal with the pizza chain (per DailyCaller). This was all done before he even played a single NFL game, so you know that both Toppers and Taylor were serious about this partnership, and will continue to be so in the future. According to Toppers, "As a franchise owner, Taylor plans to continue giving back to the Madison community, which he did often in college, including working with organizations like Badgers Give Back and Badgers Penpals."

Toppers knows where to go to get their cheese

If you're American, you likely know about Wisconsin's reputation as The Cheese State. This state is hardcore dedicated to its cheese — in Milwaukee, they've even coated their roads with a mixture of cheese brine and rock salt on snowy winter days (apparently the brine helps the salt stick to the roads). According to Wisconsin Cheese, the state is the number one cheese producer in the United States and — on its own — is the fourth biggest cheese producer in the world, only behind the rest of the U.S., France, and Germany. They even have an entire castle dedicated to the delicious dairy product. 

Though its restaurants have spread to other parts of the country, most of the chain's cheeses come right from Wisconsin (per their menu). They even have featured a limited edition "Wisconsin Cheesemaker Topper" that is topped with fresh cheese made by the Cedar Valley Cheese company. On the Toppers Facebook page the chain writes, "No, you can't handle this much cheese. No, that much cheese isn't strictly necessary or even advisable," daring its patrons to try this cheesy indulgence. Even if you don't think you could eat more than one slice, it's great to know that Toppers takes its ingredients seriously.

The vice president of marketing came to Toppers in an unusual way

If you're going to work in the pizza industry, you probably need more experience with the food than just enjoying a slice every week or so. Managing a pizza chain such as Domino's or Little Caesars means that you likely also have some history with pizza. In the case of Scott Gittrich, that meant dropping out of college for the industry; for many of the other leading Toppers figures, their experience with the chain is a bit different. Gerg Wold is the Vice President of Marketing at Toppers Pizza, and describes himself as "a seasoned marketer who can explode that position into all touch points of the brand." But even the most seasoned marketer probably doesn't have as interesting a pizza story as Greg.

According to the Toppers website, "On January 20, 2020, Greg's oldest daughter ordered Toppers Buffalo Mac and Cheese pizza after she gave birth to Greg's first grandchild" — an event which signaled to Greg, who had worked for chains such as Jersey Mike's, that there was something unique about this pizza chain. Nine months after that, Berg joined the Toppers team.