Pizza Hut Reveals Trends Report

The QSR has some pizza-based predictions.

January 19, 2024

To kick off the New Year, Pizza Hut is revealing its latest research on pizza trends and top predictions of what's to come in the pizza category for 2024.

Pizza Hut's culinary experts predict 2024 will be a year of “spicy flavors and toppings, layers and layers of flavor, and thin crust continuing to reign supreme,” among several other trends explored in their latest report.

One huge trend to spotlight is that the demand for sweet and spicy pizza offerings will remain high this coming year.

To jump on this trend, Pizza Hut is bringing hot honey offerings nationwide starting February 1 for a limited time at select participating locations. The Hot Honey Pizza starts with your choice of crust, topped with marinara sauce, cheese, classic pepperonis and crispy cupped pepperonis with a drizzle of sweet sauce infused with red habaneros and a touch of honey.

Rachel Antalek, Pizza Hut's new chief food innovation officer, says, "At Pizza Hut, our commitment to modernizing flavors is at the forefront of our brand identity. We lead trends and go bigger on flavor, as exemplified by the tremendous success of our Hot Honey test, which exceeded guest expectations. This bold innovation not only elevates our pizza experience but also opens up exciting opportunities to showcase our wings.”

Pizza Consumption Habits Across the United States

On average, individuals indulge in pizza three times a month, with North Dakota leading the way at 3.5 times per month. The quantity consumed is approximately 8 slices monthly, varying across states, with Wisconsin taking the lead at 10 slices.

North Dakota, New York, Minnesota and Wisconsin top the charts as the states with the highest pizza consumption.

Sauce Preferences and Crust Choices

The experts at Pizza Hut predict thin crust will continue to grow in popularity as consumers look for lighter styles of pizza to enjoy in addition to their more indulgent pizza favorites.

In terms of crust, Pizza Hut's recent survey found the most popular types of pizza crust are thin crust (28%), stuffed crust (20%) and thick crust (14%).

Some states prefer stuffed crust: Arkansas (28%), Kentucky (27%), Louisiana (26%), Mississippi (24%), Montana (30%), Nebraska (28%), North Carolina (23%), Oregon (23%), South Dakota (27%), Tennessee (23%), Utah (25%), Washington (22%), West Virginia (28%) and Wyoming (30%).

Dipping sauces play a significant role in enhancing the pizza experience. Ranch is the most popular (38%), followed by garlic sauce (27%), hot sauce (8%) and others. Some states, like New York, stand out for preferring hot sauce.

Pizza Styles, Seasonings and Toppings

New York (35%) topped the charts as the most popular pizza style. Parmesan (55%) is the preferred seasoning, except in New York, where garlic salt is favored (29%). Respondents lean towards savory (52%), hearty (34%) and spicy (27%) flavor profiles.

Pepperoni reigns as the preferred meat topping (42%), with exceptions in states like Illinois, Iowa and Wisconsin, which favor sausage.

Pizza lovers also shared they'd be willing to try several unusual fruit and veggie toppings on their pizza that they usually wouldn't go for: pineapple (44%), chili peppers (21%), artichokes (16%), potatoes (15%) and pickles (14%).

Want more pizza content? Read “Predicting Pizza” from NACS Magazine.