Is Pizza a Sandwich?

Pizza from Salerno's

It’s a question for the ages, debated relentlessly on social media and the subject of think pieces worldwide: is pizza a sandwich? Granted, at Salerno’s Pizza our menu divides pizza into its own category separate from our sandwiches. But are they really that different? And what about the antiquated term “pizza pie”? Is pizza a pie or a sandwich? Where do double dough and Sicilian pizzas fit into the equation? And since when did we start feeling so philosophical, anyway? Next time you’re having pizza with friends in Berwyn or Naperville, ask them, “Is pizza a sandwich?” and let the discussion fly. Here’s what we think.

Is Pizza a Sandwich? What the Law Says

What is a sandwich, anyway? We could spend days ruminating on this question in Brookfield, but instead we’re going to get legal. Here’s what the Minnesota Law Review has to say about sandwiches in the case of White City Shopping Ctr., LP v. PR Restaurants, LLC

A sandwich must consist of: 1) one slice of bread with filling placed upon it; or 2) two or more separate slices of bread with filling between the two pieces; additionally, 3) single or multiple pieces of bread cannot be rolled together, like a burrito, wrap, or taco; and 4) the filling cannot be placed inside the pocket of bread, like a pita. Under this framework, burritos, hot dogs, gyros, wraps, and tacos would not qualify as a “sandwich,” but an open-face sandwich, closed-face sandwich, or burger would qualify as a “sandwich.”

While pizza isn’t specified in this document, common sense says that they would consider pizza a sandwich. For legal reasons. If you want to debate whether crust is bread, throw our focaccia sandwiches into the argument and really derail your evening. 

Is Pizza a Pie or a Sandwich?

While the term “pizza pie” has mostly fallen out of favor, it still gets tossed into this debate. Arguments that pies have to be sweet are thwarted by mentions of shepherd’s and pot pie. Culinarily speaking, pizza is more of a savory galette than a pie, anyway. And yes, a savory galette is a thing, according to French cooking expert and former Chez Panisse chef David Lebovitz. And a galette is a form of bread—crust—with toppings. So legally, pizza is a pie that is a sandwich. 

Pizza or Sandwich?

The real question, though, is what are you craving: pizza or sandwiches? Now that you’ve spent some time sitting at home in Stickney, you’re probably wanting one or the other. What we know for sure is you can satisfy either craving when you order from Salerno’s Pizza. Go ahead and order a pizza and sandwich. For legal comparison, of course. 

Just don’t get us started on hot dogs.

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