Pizza is generally regarded as a cheap and cheerful dining option. While any good example is always a pleasure to eat, however, it’s more expensive in some places than in others — even in its simplest form.
24/7 Tempo has identified the 50 U.S. cities with the most expensive pizza. The information is drawn from the Pizza Index 2021 published by the financial advisory site Expensivity, which considered the comparative prices of a cheese pizza in 259 cities around the country based on information from MenuWithPrice. (These are the American cities with the most pizza places.)
Expensivity considered any offering described as “plain pizza,” “cheese pizza,” or “Margherita pizza,” but didn’t differentiate between pies of different sizes, so the averages given reflect the prices of qualifying pizzas of all sizes.
We were surprised to discover that the city with the most expensive pizza is Eau Claire in Wisconsin — the Cheese State, which has marketing slogans like “We dream in cheese!” Wisconsin produces more cheddar, brick, muenster, and American cheese than any other state, and yet a cheese pie in Eau Claire costs an average of $15.01.
Perhaps equally surprising was the fact that the No. 2 city on our list was New Haven, Connecticut — a city considered by some aficionados to be the pizza capital of America — where an average pie costs $13.84. On the other hand, another Connecticut city, Bridgeport, just 20 miles down the I-95 from New Haven, comes in at No. 50, as the least expensive city for pizza. (These are the 25 Best pizza places in America.)
At No. 48, New York City, where the first pizzerias opened more than a century ago, looks like a relative bargain. A plain pizza there averages $9.96, just eight cents more than you’d pay in Bridgeport.