Several region-specific pizza chains (Fresh Brothers, Zpizza, Blaze, to name a few) have long embraced vegan options, yet one pizza behemoth isn’t quite there yet. Until recently, Pizza Hut offered little more than crust and sauce by way of vegan options, but the chain’s introduction of Beyond Meat Italian sausage crumbles has made it a viable option as we consider what’s for dinner. Before you place your to-go order, here’s the run-down of what’s vegan at Pizza Hut.
This chain is known for its crispy-on-the-outside, pillowy-on-the-inside Original Pan pizza crust, but there are several other crust styles on the menu. The Original Pan is vegan, as are the Thin ‘N Crispy and Hand Tossed crusts. Some locations also offer a heart-shaped crust—which comes on the Hand Tossed variety—so you’re safe with that choice as well. Avoid all of the Crust Flavor add-ons, as they all contain some derivative of dairy.
Stick to the tried-and-true marinara or go spicy with the Buffalo. Avoid the Creamy Garlic Parmesan for its dairy content and the Barbeque which contains honey.
Pizza Hut does not carry vegan cheese yet, so no matter what you order, you’ll want to go cheeseless. For a few weeks during late fall of 2020, the chain partnered with Beyond Meat to offer Beyond Meat Italian sausage crumbles on two new signature pan pizzas and as an à la carte option. This meaty vegan item is no longer available, but with the ever-growing demand for plant-based options in the US, it may be reintroduced in the future. For now, vegan Pizza Hut patrons can load their custom creation up with a medley of vegetables including banana peppers, olives, mushrooms, red onion, green peppers, jalapeños, tomatoes, and the forever controversial pineapple. No matter what you choose, select the “extra” option so your pizza-maker knows to fill the crust canvas with veggies.
There’s a reason it’s called Pizza Hut, not Pasta Hut. None of the pasta items are vegan.
If you’re not a regular, you may not know that Pizza Hut makes fries. Unfortunately, this is the only vegan-friendly option on the sides menu. Alas, the breadsticks are not vegan—the seasoning contains cheese.
While the savory breadsticks aren’t readily vegan-friendly, the sweet Cinnamon Sticks are plant-based. Skip the icing that comes with them (it contains dairy) and you’ve got a soft-and-fluffy, cinnamon sugar-coated treat to round out your meal. Pro tip: make your own icing at home by mixing a half cup of powdered sugar with a tablespoon or two of plant milk and a drop of vanilla extract. Add just enough plant milk until you’ve achieved a dippable consistency.
Tanya Flink is a Digital Editor at VegNews as well as a writer and fitness enthusiast living in Orange County, CA.