What's Trending in Frozen Pizza for 2021?

From plant-based meats to low-carb crusts, innovation in frozen pizza is ramping up in the new year to meet consumer cravings for convenient comfort foods. Check out the five top frozen pizza trends to watch in 2021.

2021 Frozen Pizza Trends

It’s no surprise that pizza has been a popular food choice during the pandemic lockdown. As a comfort food that’s quick and easy to prepare and offers a restaurant experience from home, heat-and-eat frozen pizza is checking all the boxes right now. Manufacturers are tapping into this heightened interest in the category with some exciting expansions and innovations. Here’s a look at the top frozen pizza trends for 2021:

1. Plant-Based Pizzas

Consumer demand for plant-based is changing business as usual in the frozen pizza category. However, the mainstreaming of plant-based pizza is taking different forms. For example, while DiGiorno’s Meatless Supreme swaps meat toppings for plant-based meats but keeps the dairy cheese, the recently launched Meatless Evolution line by American Flatbread offers both vegan and vegetarian options. Based on current cheese trends, expect more pizza brands to begin embracing plant-based cheese.

2. Hemp Seed Crust

From cauliflower to chickpea crusts, innovations in non-traditional pizza crusts are going strong. The newest addition: Urban Pie Pizza Co.’s Hemp Seed Crust Pizzas. The front-of-package labeling touts the superfood benefits of hemp as a source of plant-based protein and essential omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Hemp seed pizzas address consumers’ growing interests in both hemp products and plant-based eating.


3. High Protein/Low Carb

The recent debuts of Quest Meat Lover’s Loaded Pizza and Foster Farms Low-Carb Smart Crust Pizzas underscore the strong demand for high-protein, low-carb foods of all types, even indulgent foods like pizza. Quest claims 22 grams of protein with 5 grams of net carbs, while Foster Farms’ pizzas offer 25 grams of protein with 4 grams of carbs. A custom premix is an easy way to boost any pizza’s protein with either dairy- or plant-based proteins.

4. Croissant Crust

While healthier pizzas are undoubtedly trending this year, let’s not forget texture and flavor innovations that offer to make pizzas even more craveable. DiGiorno’s new Croissant Crust Pizza gives consumers an ultra-decadent option in frozen pizza with its flaky, buttery, croissant-style crust. This innovation opens the door to other exciting textures inspired by the bakery category.

5. Beer-Flavored

For anyone who enjoys beer with pizza, the new ‘ZaBrewski frozen pizza line is a no-brainer. These beer-flavored pizzas arose from a partnership between Screamin' Sicilian Pizza Co. and Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company. Taking craft pizza to a new level, this line of pizzas features beer flavor in the crust, in the meatball glaze, and in the cheese sauce. Don’t be surprised if the beer-cheese flavor combo emerges as one of the cheese trends of the new year.


Grab Your Piece of the Pie

The sudden rise in demand for comfort foods and convenient at-home meal options has been a boon for the frozen pizza category. From novel flavors and textures to health and sustainability benefits, pizza innovations of all types are exciting consumers right now.

"Consumers’ excitement over new toppings and crusts, along with formulas that are clean label, gluten-free, and better-for-you, creates a variety of opportunities to grab your piece of the pie! Count on Glanbia Nutritionals to meet all of your delicious, nutritious pizza needs from crust to topping —from Watson Bakery Ingredients including dough conditioners, gluten-free baking mixes and clean label baking ingredients, to topping like cheese and Simpleat™ plant-based meat solutions, as well as ingredient solutions for fortified or high-protein pizzas. Contact us to get cooking. 

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