Oh pizza, you may not be glamourous or healthy, but you have satisfied the cavernous appetites of hungry London foodies since you were invented, way back in 1889. Who doesn’t like pizza? The insane, that’s who. Whether you’re drunk, starving or just craving cheese, tomato and dough, pizza provides.
Luckily for us, the capital is full of great options for pizza, ranging from by the slice operations to upmarket Mayfair Italians. Whichever kind of pizza is your favourite, we think it’s about time we all raise a glass to one of the world’s most popular dishes, and get ourselves down to any of these delicious restaurants, which serve the best pizza in London.
Traditional pizza in London
Pizza has taken on all sorts of styles and forms in the capital, but some people think pizza is at its best when it’s kept simple and classic. If you’re one such person, you’ll love these restaurants which serve traditional pizza.
50 Kaló di Ciro Salvo, Covent Garden
What: Ciro Salvo’s debut London pizzeria continues to carry the British torch for the original in Naples. While this restaurant’s eclectic interiors are not to everyone’s taste, the pizza definitely is. Each pizza has a soft and thin Neapolitan-style base with crispy outer edges and charring marks. Toppings include carbonara, lasagne, and Bianca with ham and mushrooms, as well as many more.
Where: 7 Northumberland Avenue, WC2N 5BY
Portobello Ristorante Pizzeria, Notting Hill
What: Portobello Ristorante Pizzeria is all about keeping its pizza traditional. The sourdough is left to rise for 48 hours and cooked in an artisan Italian oven. Its pizza is also sold by the metre, a Neapolitan tradition. Half a metre is enough for two people and one metre will feed four. All the classics are available including, quattro formaggi, romana and diavola.
Where: 7 Ladbroke Road, W11 3PA
What: A relaxed neighbourhood joint which is big on authenticity, Vernedi focuses on classic Italian comfort food. In contrast, the interior is industrial-chic with distressed wooden tables and low hanging lights. Pizzas from a wood burning oven mean perfectly crisp dough and that they are firmly the stars of the show. The calzone with ham, spinach, mushroom and pepperoni is not to be missed.
Where: 9 Chatsworth Road, E5 0LH
What: Another Italian that looks to Naples for inspiration, Quartieri produces large, sourdough pizzas with plenty of toppings. The pizzas here favour fior di latte over mozzarella, which they source from the Agerola municipality in Naples. The pizza menu has two sides – one focusing on the classics (Margherita and Diavola) and ‘something a little different’, which includes a pistachio pesto pizza.
Where: 300 Kilburn High Road, NW6 2DB
Zia Lucia, Brook Green and Holloway
Why: The original Holloway branch of this pizzeria opened in 2016 with great results. Now with an additional restaurant in Brook Green, Zia Lucia has quite the following. Its pizzas are 48-hour slow fermented and offer four different types of dough: vegetable charcoal, wholemeal, gluten-free and traditional. Pizza toppings includes the ‘Speck-tacular’ with gongorzola, pecorino and smoked ham.
Where: 61 Blythe Road, W14 0HP; 157 Holloway Road, N7 8LX
L'Antica Pizzeria da Michele Baker Street and Soho
What: Made famous by the film Eat Pray Love (starring Hollywood royalty Julia Roberts), this pizza chain already has one London site on Baker Street, with a second one in the works for Soho. Expect a concise menu which includes pizzas such as a half-and-half combination of margherita and marinara, and a fried pizza which is topped with salami, pressed pork and ricotta cheese.
Where: 199 Baker Street, NW1 6UY; 44 Old Compton Street, W1D 4TY
Santa Maria Chelsea, Ealing and Fitzrovia
What: With three sites around London (Chelsea, Ealing and Fitzrovia), Santa Maria is a no-bookings pizza restaurant which packs a serious punch. Pizzas are made using Neapolitan-style bases and cooked in a wood-fired oven, with all of the varieties being served alongside extra virgin olive oil and fresh basil leaves. Choose from toppings such as ‘nduja, Parma ham and rare breed Yorkshire sausage.
Where: 92-94 Waterford road, SW6 2HA; 15 St Mary's Road, W5 5RA; 160 New Cavendish Street, W1W 6YR
The Bird in Hand, Olympia
What: Its name may make it sound like an old-school boozer, but The Bird in Hand is actually a rather cosy little eatery. The Italian-leaning menu features cicchetti and pasta, but the pizzas are our favourites. All of them are made using a traditional tomato and mozzarella base, but toppings vary from the likes of truffle paste and Tuscan sausage to smoked duck with spring onion and a balsamic and honey glaze.
Where: 88 Masbro Road, W14 0LR
Pizza by the slice in London
Although eating pizza by the slice is a bit of a foreign concept to us (we’ll take the whole thing please), we understand that pizza slices are great for when you’re on the go and also provide the opportunity to try a few different toppings. There are a few by the slice pizza joints to choose from in London, so check out our favourites below.
Voodoo Ray’s Dalston and Peckham
What: Voodoo Ray’s (found in Dalston and Peckham) pizza slices are cut from a 22-inch pie kept behind a glass counter. Interiors feel like you have stepped into an 80’s arcade game, due to the colourful square tiles sorted into geometric patterns. The pizza names here are fun, with the ‘Queen Vegan’ made up of artichoke, olives, onion, tomatoes and green sauce, or the opposite end of the spectrum, with the ‘The Meat is on’.
Where: 95 Kingsland High Street, E8 2PB; 285 Rye Lane, SE15 4UA
Arancina, Bayswater and Notting Hill
What: Don’t fancy American-style pizza by the slice? Arancina is best for you then, as it serves classic Italian pizza at its sites in Bayswater and Notting Hill. Opened by brothers Edoardo and Michele Mortari (who also have branches in Rome), their London restaurants can be identified by a bright-orange Fiat 500 cut in half, on display in its front window. This pizzeria is notable for the fact it has two vegan options, which are the ‘Vegan glory’ and ‘No meat, no cheese’.
Where: 19 Westbourne Grove, W2 4UA; 19 Pembridge Road, W11 3HG
Joe Public, Clapham
What: Ever eaten by the slice pizza in a public toilet? No? Well now you can at Joe Public, a pizzeria that inhabits the site of a former block of public loos. Pizza comes California-style, i.e. with lots toppings served on a sourdough base. Our favourites are the chicken, halloumi and chorizo, and the native mushrooms, crispy shallots and truffle oil, with a Parmesan and cream chive base.
Where: Former Public Convenience, The Pavement, SW4 7AA
Mulberry Street, Notting Hill
What: In 2018, Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson ordered a pizza from Mulberry Street pizza on one of his ‘cheat days’. One Instagram post later and Mulberry Street’s website crashed from all the incoming traffic. If all-American Hollywood star Dwayne Johnson enjoys slices of pizzas from this restaurant, who are we to disagree? Its best seller is the ‘meat lover’, which includes Italian sausage, meatballs, ham, onion and mushroom.
Where: 47 Moscow Road, W2 5RT
Posh pizza in London
If you find yourself craving pizza, but don’t want to order yet another Dominos, why not treat yourself to a slap-up pizza in a posh restaurant? We’ve found some of the most decedent pizzas in the capital for you to tuck into, topped with luxe ingredients like truffle shavings and served in sumptuous surrounds. See where you can splash the cash below.
Hai Cenato, Victoria
What: Did you know Michelin-starred chef Jason Atherton has a pizzeria? Hai Cenato is technically billed as a ‘New York-Italian restaurant’, but its pizza is its main draw. The restaurant splits its options into ‘pizza rossa’ and ‘pizza bianca’. From the former, you’ll find a homemade fennel sausage, prosciutto, stracciatella, parsley and gremolata pizza. From the latter, confit lamb neck and spiced aubergine pizza with yoghurt and mint.
Where: 2 Sir Simon Milton Square, SW1E 5DJ
What: With an imposing reception desk, plush beige seats and chandeliers, Bocconcino is far from your typical pizza joint. However, despite being an upmarket trattoria, there is a long list of pizza options on the menu. These consist of classics such as Quattro Fromaggi and Napoletana, alongside more contemporary toppings such as spicy salami and black truffle shavings.
Where: 19 Berkeley Street, W1J 8ED
Crazy Pizza, Marylebone
Why: A sibling site to the original in Porto Cervo, the London location for Crazy Pizza is a sleek and sophisticated affair, featuring deep red interior accents and staff donning bowties. Pizzas here are made without using yeast, resulting in a much thinner and crispier base that doesn’t leave you feeling bloated. We loved the truffle loaded pizza on our visit, although we’re sure not everyone would be keen on the £45 price tag.
Where: 7 Paddington Street, W1U 5QH
Chucs Mayfair, Kensington, Serpentine, Westbourne Grove
What: Elegant Italian restaurant Chucs has a few outposts across London (Mayfair, Kensington, Serpentine and Westbourne Grove) all of which serve ‘Chucs classics’. This section of the menu contains three pretty swanky pizzas. The first is your archetypal pizza margherita, second is a pizza bianca with bresaola, rocket and Parmesan and the last (which costs an eye-watering £30) is the pizza Bianca with black truffle.
Where: 30B Dover Street, W1S 4ND; 97 Old Brompton Road, SW7 3LD; Sackler Gallery, West Carriage Drive, W2 2AR; 226 Westbourne Grove, W11 2RH
Osteria Basilico, Notting Hill
What: A traditional Italian in old-school surrounds, Osteria Basilico serves up delicious pizzas which are the real deal. Thin crusts and traditional toppings are the main draw, with options to choose from including the Nostrana with mushrooms, ham and olives, and the Quattro Formaggi which combines four different kinds of cheese. If you’re sharing, choose a bowl from Osteria’s pasta menu too – you won’t regret it.
Where: 29 Kensington Park Road, W11 2EU
Harry’s Bar, Marylebone
What: A sibling to the Mayfair members’ club of the same name, Harry’s Bar is an all-day operation which serves a menu of Italian fare. A couple of the pizzas are a bit whacky (smoked salmon and avocado pizza, anyone?), but the more classic takes such as the margherita and the rosso (pepperoni, ‘nduja and roasted peppers) fare much better. We’re also just a little bit in love with Harry’s dreamy old-school Italian interiors.
Where: 30-34 James Street, W1U 1ER
Giant pizza in London
If you’re heading for pizza with your entire family in tow, or you’re catching up with a large group of friends over some dough, we’d recommend heading to one of these London restaurants which serve giant pizza. Whether they’re 18 or 20 inches wide, these giant pizzas will satisfy everyone in the group, or if you’re really hungry, you could always try tackling one each.
Yard Sale Pizza Clapton, Finsbury Park, Hackney, Leytonstone and Walthamstow
What: Established by three friends in an actual back yard, Yard Sale is probably most famous for its Clapton branch being the random venue that served as the UK debut for actor Macaulay Culkin’s covers band, but there are other branches too in Finsbury Park, Hackney, Leytonstone and Walthamstow. The 18-inch option is perfect for sharing with a friend or two, with humorously named pizzas including the TSB (tender stem broccoli) and the ‘herb your enthusiasm’.
Where: 105 Lower Clapton Road, E5 0NP; Finsbury Park, 54 Blackstock Road, N4 2DW; 184 Hackney Road, E2 7QL; 622 High Road, E11 3BZ; Walthamstow, 15 Hoe Street, E17 4SD
Homeslice City, Covent Garden, Fitzrovia, Old Street and White City
What: Homeslice was originally a pop-up selling pizza by the slice (which it still does), but now the six-strong group has sites all over London – City, Covent Garden, Fitzrovia, Old Street and White City, and is best known for its 20-inch pizzas. All Homeslice pizzas cost £20 and that’s plenty enough to share with a friend or two. The restaurant's toppings are quite creative too, with options such as kimchi, porcini cream and basil, or chorizo, corn and coriander.
Where: 69-71 Queen Street, EC4R 1EE; 13 Neal's Yard, WC2H 9DP; 52 Wells Street, W1T 3PR; 374-378 Old Street, EC1V 9LT; Television Centre, Wood Lane, W12 7FA
Pi Pizza, Battersea
What: Pi Pizza is one of London’s more aesthetically pleasing pizzerias with its white-washed brickwork and a flower-laden ceiling. It also sells 20-inch pizzas, which can be split into halves or thirds for pizza toppings. We like the sound of 'nduja, ricotta, mint and jalapeño jam pizza, and the Lebanese spiced ground lamb, Turkish yoghurt and fresh parsley pizza.
Where: 6 Battersea Rise, SW11 1ED
Bunga Bunga, Battersea and Covent Garden
What: Among the most fun venues in London, Bunga Bunga boasts a rustic space in Battersea and a swish sibling in Covent Garden where the camp factor is dialled up a notch. While you’re being entertained by the karaoke room or on-stage cabaret, you can tuck into metre long pizzas with cheeky names such as David’s Sausage and the Italian Stallion, all while sipping from cocktails served inside the ‘heads’ of famous Italian celebs.
Where: 37 Battersea Bridge Road, SW11 3BA; 167 Drury Lane, WC2B 5PG
Cheap pizza in London
Pizza is one of the best cheap eats you can find in London, with several restaurants offering up slices of the good stuff for under a tenner. If you’re on the hunt for some pocket-friendly pizza that won’t leave a hole in your wallet, check out these cheap and cheerful pizza joints which will leave both your stomach and your wallet full.
Pizza Pilgrims, various locations
What: Pizza Pilgrims started out with brothers Thom and James Elliot, who set out in a van on a pizza pilgrimage across Italy to find slices worth worshiping. We reckon they succeeded as their crisp Neapolitan-style sourdough pizzas are great. With its monthly guest pizza and Nutella pizza ring dessert, Pizza Pilgrims has enough twists to be different to the competition. You’ll also be happy to know that most pizzas are under £11.
Where: Various London locations
Made of Dough
What: Serving up wood-fired pizzas on Peckham’s bustling Bellenden Road (also home to Artusi and The Begging Bowl), Made of Dough is a quick and casual joint turning out some seriously good pizzas. We’re fans of toppings which include spicy lamb sausage, while vegans can opt for a variety topped with mushrooms, peppers and vegan cheese. You can also order sauces to dip your crusts in, including a lemon and rosemary aioli.
Where: 182 Bellenden Road, SE15 4BW
Pizza East Portobello and Shoreditch
What: Each of London's two Pizza East locations have different vibes. Shoreditch sees funky staff whizz around a wood-heavy dining room, while Notting Hill is a more intimate affair. Pizzas are affordable, starting from £10 for your basic buffalo mozzarella, tomato and basil, and stray no further than £15 with San Daniele which is topped with prosciutto, rocket, Parmesan and tomato.
Where: 79 Highgate Road, NW5 1TL; 310 Portobello Road, W10 5TA; 56 Shoreditch High Street, E1 6JJ
Franco Manca, various locations
Why: Cheap as chips and plenty of fun, Franco Manca locations have now been rolled out across the capital. Franco Manca is walk-ins only, so it’s a great spot for quick and casual dinners, especially if you’ve got your little ones in tow. Pizzas are great value too, with tomato, garlic, basil and oregano on a sourdough base setting you back just £5. Post-pizza, tuck into traditional Italian desserts including panna cotta and tiramisu.
Where: Various London locations
Cecconi’s Pizza Bar, Soho
What: Cecconi’s Pizza Bar is a more casual spin-off of the upmarket Italian brand, and although the décor feels a little bit Pizza Express, the menu features a reliable run of Italian classics. There’s spicy salami with mozzarella with chilli for the carnivores, while veggies can tuck into a combination of aubergine, sundried tomatoes and basil pesto. To round things off, try the gelato of the day or the chocolate cheesecake.
Where: 19-21 Old Compton Street, W1D 5JJ
Four Hundred Rabbits Crystal Palace, Nunhead and West Norwood
What: With three neighbourhood sites on the fringes of London (you’ll find Four Hundred Rabbits in Crystal Palace, Nunhead and West Norwood), this popular pizzeria turns out a run of simple yet delicious pizzas. These are made using sourdough bases and there’s plenty of choice for vegetarians, who can tuck into combinations such as tomato and crushed garlic or feta and courgette. For the meat eaters, there’s 35 day-aged long horn minced beef.
Where: 30-32 Westow Street, SE19 3AH; 143 Evelina Road, SE15 3HB; 521 Norwood Road, SE27 9DL
Bobby Fitzpatrick, Hampstead
What: Bobby Fitzpatrick is not only cheesy because of its pizza toppings. Celebrating the shag-pile days of the mid-1970s, this restaurant may be an assault on the senses (and perhaps taste) but it’s a lot of fun. The pizza selection is concise and largely features the usual fare, such as pepperoni and courgette, but the option to buy crust dips such as garlic mayonnaise and nacho cheese adds an extra sense of cheese.
Where: 273 West End Lane, NW6 1QS
Love all things Italian? Check out our pick of the best pasta dishes you can find in London.