If you are considering adopting a vegan diet, it is natural to wonder if vegans can still enjoy Pizza. After all, pizza has to be one of the ultimate comfort foods, an indulgent reminder that there are still, good and wholesome things in the world.
While vegans would logically avoid the extra dairy cheese and pepperoni, they can now enjoy a wide variety of pizzas by removing the cheese or using vegan alternatives and choosing from hundreds of plant-based toppings.
Fortunately, many pizza chains are keeping up with the vegan demand and have options that are totally vegan-friendly. You do not need to go to a specialty pizzeria and can easily order some pizza next time you do not wanna leave your couch.
Can Vegans Eat Pizza with Cheese?
Vegans exclude the use and consumption of all animal products, including cheese made with animal milk. While most vegans avoid dairy products to reduce the suffering of animals, there are also some who do it for health reasons.
Aspiring vegans usually find it the hardest to give up cheese. They think it is because of its gooeyness and flavor but there is an extra element to it: the addictive opiate morphine.
Back in 1981, Eli Hazum and his colleagues at Wellcome Research Laboratories found morphine in cow’s milk. They claim its function was to encourage the baby cow to bond with its mother, nurse and get its nutrients. However, for adult humans, it creates a real addictive response when consuming dairy cheese.
What about vegan cheese?
I get it, cheese is supposed to come from the milk of cows, goats, or sheep; so the idea of ‘vegan cheese’ can be confusing.
Luckily, technology and human creativity have allowed for some amazing cheese alternatives that are 100 percent animal and morphine free.
Nowadays, we can find vegan cheeses made of soy; nuts, cashews, macadamias; and vegetable oils, such as coconut oil. We can also find others that derive from agar, tapioca, peas, and arrowroot.
While it’s not a super vegan health food like kale and spirulina are, vegans cheese allows vegans to enjoy pizza without any sacrifice.
Back to the origins of pizza
For better or worse, pizza has come a long way since its origins in Naples
Along with pizza Margherita, pizza Marinana was one of the two first pizzas ever known.
Neapolitan pizza is characterized by its simplicity. A classic marinara is topped only with tomato, garlic, oregano and a bit of olive oil. That’s right, yes, the original recipe for pizza marinara is already vegan.
And no, there is no fish on a marinara, even if the translation means sailor’s pizza. So, if you are like me and prefer your pizza without the added cheese, you can be happy you are doing it the authentic Italian way.
How to order vegan pizza anywhere
Ordering a vegan pizza might not be as easy as requesting ‘no cheese’. While that might be the case some times, some crusts or sauce may contain animal products.
As a vegan, you will get used to learning all the seemingly unnecessary products companies put milk powder on.
Some places use honey in the crust to activate the yeast and some put parmesan cheese in the sauce. Luckily most restaurants have this information on their website so you can get informed in advance.
Choosing your toppings
Whether you eat your pizza with or without pineapple (let’s not get political here), choosing your toppings can make or break your pizza.
Even when vegan cheese is available I tend to skip it since I find I can taste the flavor of my toppings better that way. You can always experiment, it is pizza and it’s supposed to be fun after all.
Pizza places usually have long lists of veggie topping choices such as artichoke hearts, roasted red peppers, fresh basil, green olives, broccoli, pineapple, broccoli rabe, spinach, eggplant, tomato, roasted garlic, sun-dried tomato, zucchini, mushrooms, sauteed onions, sliced red onions, jalapeno peppers, banana peppers, and black olives.
Just make sure that each of the toppings is not cooked with any cheese or other animal products. I don’t know who came up with the idea of sauteeing spinach in bacon grease but it’s a thing.
Check out our list of popular pizzerias to get an idea of what to order in each one:
1. Ordering Vegan Pizza At Papa John’s:
This pizza chain has several “accidentally” vegan options. At the moment they don’t serve vegan cheese but they make up for it with drool-worthy dipping sauces. The garlic, BBQ, or Buffalo dipping sauce are completely vegan!
You can choose between their original hand-tossed dough or pan dough. The pizza, pan, and barbecue sauces are all free from dairy so you can order your veggie pizza as usual —just skip the cheese!
2. Ordering Vegan Pizza At Domino’s:
Domino’s now has a whole range of vegan pizzas to challenge your choice making skills. Their options include:
- Vegan Avocado Veg
- Vegan Spicy Veg Trio
- Vegan Margherita
- Vegan Summer BBQ
- Vegan Taco Fiesta
- Vegan Beef & Onion
- Vegan Loaded Burger
If you rather choose from their regular range or create your own pizza, just remember to swamp the regular Mozzarella cheese for Vegan Mozzarella.
BONUS: The Garlic Dipping Sauce, BBQ Sauce, Kicker Hot Sauce, and Sweet Mango Habanero Sauce are all animal-free. Also, try some of their Garlic bread or Vegan Cheese Bread. You can thank me later.
3. Ordering Vegan Pizza At Little Caesars:
Both the thing and regular crust are vegan.
Try ordering some of their Crazy Bread without Parmesan cheese, along with some Crazy Sauce on the side. Do this at your own risk, we are still trying to give it up—it’s that good.
4. Ordering Vegan Pizza At Pizza Hut:
For your dough, choose between the Thin ‘N Crispy or Hand-Tossed crust. (the others aren’t vegan).
Pizza Hut is widening its vegan options and you might find different things available depending on the location.
You can now get Violife Vegan Cheese and Pea Pepperoni in the UK. Hopefully, those will come to the US soon.
Also, The dessert pizza crust is also vegan. You’re welcome.
5. Ordering Vegan Pizza At Mellow Mushroom
Ask for no butter or Parmesan on your crust and substitute Daiya cheese for mozzarella. Go crazy on their range of topping that includes ingredients like tofu and tempeh.
Recently, Mellow Mushroom recently introduced a vegan menu that’s now available at its more than 150 U.S. locations.
It includes their already-popular Mega-Veggie Pizza, Thai Dye Pizza, and Gluten-Free Veg Out Pizza, as well as vegan pretzels, hummus, Greek salad, spinach salad, the house calzone and three types of hoagies (with both tofu and tempeh offered as proteins).
6. Ordering Vegan Pizza At Pieology
Go for the gluten-free crust, red sauce, olive oil, or BBQ sauce. Daiya cheese is available as well!
You will also be able to try their several vegan meats, such as Gardein vegan meatballs, chicken, and Italian sausage.
7. Ordering Vegan Pizza At Zpizza
This restaurant has an interactive online menu that tells you how to make your pizza vegan just by checking a box.
You can have more than a dozen of the pizzas by simply opting for vegan cheese. And don’t miss the Beyond Meat sausage.
8. Ordering Vegan Pizza At Little Caesar’s
Their veggie pizza is vegan if ordered without cheese, as well as the BBQ dipping sauce.
Unfortunately, Little Caesar’s is less customizable than the other pizza chains on this list and their vegan options are limited.
9. Ordering Vegan Pizza At Blaze Pizza
Both the standard and gluten-free crusts are vegan, along with the classic red, spicy red and barbecue sauces. Ask for their vegan cheese and try their kalamata olives, banana peppers and more.
They use special markers for the line cooks to avoid cross-contamination with mandatory glove changes. This has made the chain a favorite among vegans.
10. Ordering Vegan Pizza At Mod Pizza
Mod Pizza is another pizza chain where you build your pizza as you go.
Their original crust is vegan and they offer dairy-free cheese. Go for the red sauce, barbecue sauce and garlic rub, and it off with a balsamic fig glaze, barbecue swirl or hot Buffalo sauce.
Alternatively, add your vegan toppings at home
It sounds a bit counterintuitive since the goal of ordering pizza delivery is to skip on the cooking. But, if you are feeling adventurous hear me out on this one. You can exponentially elevate the status of any pizza by adding some at-home final touches.
Your pizza won’t be hot by the time it gets delivered, so at the very least, you want to reheat it. While you are waiting for it, preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
Since you are already in the kitchen why not do something crazy and prepare some super-special-toppings-no-pizzeria-can-offer-you.
If that is not enticing enough, topping the pizza with your own chopped vegetables will also be less expensive than ordering them from the store.
Demand More Vegan Options
Whether you go to a restaurant or are ordering for delivery, don’t be afraid to ask about their vegan options. You are a paying customer and you have a right to know what you are buying.
Ask them to consider adding more vegan options to their menu. If they know there is a demand, they might consider it, especially if you are a frequent customer.
Make Your Own Vegan Pizza
Vegan pizza from scratch? Trust me, it is a lot easier than it sounds. Check out this video and you will be on your way to preheat your oven.
Now you know vegans can definitely eat pizza and enjoy it as much as their omnivore friends.
And who knows…next time you order a vegan pizza you can offer them a bite and it might spark their curiosity.
Which vegan pizza will you try now? Tell us in the comments below!