Hot dogs and apple pie have long been considered the most American of all cuisines. But it’s time we finally just accept that pizza is pretty much considered currency these days. You know the drill, you help them move, he orders pizza and beer.
Because pizza is such a hit among, oh, everyone, we’re going to take a look at some of the great moments in pizza-eating history, and probably work up an appetite in the process. At the very least, you can rattle off these fun facts at your next tailgate, like the pizza-eating pro that you are.
World’s Largest Pizza
Really, it’s more like they took a football field and covered it with pizza sauce and mozzarella cheese. The world record for the largest pizza belongs to folks of Norwood, South Africa. Weighing in at over 16,000 pounds, this 122-square-foot slice of heaven consists of nearly 10,000 pounds of flour, about 4,000 pounds of cheese, 2,000 pounds of tomato puree and 200 pounds of salt. That’s enough pizza, in fact, to feed about 40,000 people, according to Slash Food, or 20,000 people with enough left over for a cold slice or two the next day.
Largest Edible Slice
First, we need to define a “slice.” It has to be something you can actually pick up with your hands and eat. With that said, some have claimed that Real Deal Deli near Boston has the largest pizza slice “ever.” There hasn’t been an official ruling on this, but when you consider that said slice is about a quarter of an entire pizza, yeah that’s pretty big. We can’t officially call it the “biggest,” but that’s because no one seems to want to define the parameters to which a slice is considered a slice.
Pizza Eating Record
World champion eater Joey Chestnut holds the record for most slices of pizza eaten in 10 minutes, with 40.5 slices. That’s pretty incredible, no? Well, consider that the average person eats about 46 slices of pizza each year. Joey Chestnut deserves to take a victory lap, after he digests, of course.
Joey Chestnut and Takeru Kobayashi (Photo Credit: Jason Merritt/Getty Images)
Fastest Time to Eat an Entire Pizza
Chestnut isn’t the only one breaking pizza records. Legendary eater Takeru Kobayashi actually owns the Guinness World Record for eating a 12-inch pizza in one minute and 9.36 seconds. It takes most people longer than that just to place their order.
Most Pizzas Made in an Hour
Give it up for Bob Blumer, who on July 4, 2010, broke a Guinness World Record, making 168 complete pizzas in 60 minutes. (Do we really need any more affirmation that pizza is America’s national food?) Bob is no stranger to breaking records; he owns four others, including the largest bowl of salsa ever made, at 2,672 pounds. Hmm… Salsa on top of pizza? Actually, never mind, that sounds kind of gross.
Grossest Pizza Ever
Again, there’s no official award for the grossest pizza. But if there ever were, the Japanese ‘Mega Pizza’ would win it, hands down. This thing — it’s hard to actually call it a pizza — has crust made of hot dogs wrapped in bacon and cheese. It also includes a hamburger, cheese roll, sausage, bacon, ham, onions, peppers, garlic and tomato sauce on top. Oh, and, it’s topped off with ketchup and maple syrup. Don’t even pretend like you’d eat that. The ingredients are fine individually. All together, though, it’s like a garbage disposal on a plate.
See other amazing Feats of Eating.
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Tom Lorenzo is a freelance sports, entertainment and pop culture writer from New York City. You can follow him on Twitter at @TomLorenzo.