What is the earliest recorded recipe for pizza ever written? I think it’s in the 1700’s, but I’m just not really sure myself, thusly my question. If this is the wrong stack to put it on I apologize.

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    I’m voting to close this question because it is out of our scope. See cooking.stackexchange.com/help/on-topic, it even includes the exact example of historic pizza recipes as illustration for what is off-topic. If you want to find another stack, you can ask in History chat if your question is clear enough to be answerable for them.
    – rumtscho
    Aug 11, 2022 at 8:13
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    @rumtscho it's not clear that the OP is asking for an actual recipe, as opposed to knowing the time and the place, which is allowed (and answerable). Abraham, which were you asking for?
    – FuzzyChef
    Aug 11, 2022 at 17:10
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    (also, note that you didn't "vote to close", you closed it)
    – FuzzyChef
    Aug 11, 2022 at 17:13
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    @FuzzyChef Yes, I get what you mean. I still find that the question is a bad fit. 1) it is unclear what the OP would accept as close enough to count as "pizza". But more important, 2) knowing our audience, I am pretty sure that they don't intuitively know the correct answer, or at least the right magnitude of it. So the votes are likely to be quite misleading, unable to distinguish between plausibly-written-but-wrong answers from right answers. If you nevertheless think it is a good question, it is probably worth a Meta discussion, we can even feature it, to make sure it gets attention.
    – rumtscho
    Aug 14, 2022 at 8:52
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    Rumtscho: cooking.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/3761/…
    – FuzzyChef
    Aug 14, 2022 at 20:31

3 Answers 3


The earliest example of unquestionable Italian pizza in the modern sense started in the slums of Naples in the late 18th century. These had pizza crust, tomatoes, mozzarella, basil, and other ingredients. Since they were poor people food, it took a while for them to be documented in writing; the earliest clear description of them is from 1849. By 1889, the monarchs of the newly unified Italy chose Pizza Margherita as the representative food of Naples.

Dishes called "pizza" such as pizza rustica go back much further, first recorded in the 10th century, likely brought by the Gothic conquerors of Southern Italy. These would have been pies of eggs, meat, fish, and/or vegetables in a short crust.

If you expand the definition of pizza to "flatbread cooked with cheese and stuff on it", such a dish goes back to at least ancient Persia, and likely to prehistoric times.

So, which recipe is first is going to depend on which of these definitions of pizza you're using.


This is actually difficult to answer because many English speakers consider a ‘pizza’ to be something different from what Italians consider to be a ‘pizza’

In Italian, ‘pizza’ means ‘pie’, so there are dishes like ‘pizza rustica’ (more like a quiche than what an American would consider a pizza) which may be pre-Colombian, as they don’t require any new world ingredients (tomato).

And then there are non-Italian flatbreads with stuff baked on them. It’s believed those may go back 1000 years, well before Italians were making pizza.

  • Ah, yes. The <scrap of dough with something on it> genre - it’s been around since well before written sources which would make that a written language history question rather than a culinary history one. In the end, it all hinges on the definition of “Pizza”.
    – Stephie
    Aug 15, 2022 at 10:10

According to the phenomenal book Modernist Pizza by Nathan Myhrvold et al, the first published recipe for a savoury pizza is actually in French! And it's surprisingly recent, dating to the 1870s. (Cuisine de Tous les Pays was written by Urbain Dubois some time in the 1870s (I have come across multiple publication dates for it.) )

That does NOT mean that pizza first appeared in France, or in the middle of the 19th century, but rather that a Frenchman traveling in southern Italy thought it worth mentioning.

(Edited to add)

That book (Modernist Pizza) is a must-have for anyone interested in pizza (who has the space/budget for it - it's big and expensive!)

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