How pizza became the MVP of pandemic meals

We’ve all been there: No idea what to make for dinner. Not in the mood for this, that or the other. “Let’s just order a pizza.”

That longstanding solution took on new meaning in quarantine times as more families turned to the simple comfort of pizza. Papa John’s saw quarterly sales growth of 23.8%, according to this Medium story. But a slice or two also became the go-to lunch for those of us who have been working from home. Gone are the sad lunch salads we’ve ordered and ate in our cubicles to try to keep healthy at work. Nationally, build-your-own-salad concepts like Sweetgreen saw sales slip 60% during the first weeks of quarantine. Maybe there’s not as much guilt in ordering a pizza at home while you work on a laptop?

And as more and more restaurants struggle to make ends meet with the harsh economic side effects of the pandemic, those restaurants with pizza on the menu are finding that it’s the easiest and cheapest way to still make a buck. The cost of the ingredients is relatively cheap for the restaurant, yet it’s still a satisfying draw for the masses. Many restaurants that might not have featured pizza in the past are installing brick ovens and other equipment to join the trend.

Just look at the number of pizza-focused restaurants that have opened during the pandemic or will be opening soon in Baton Rouge, such as Pizza Artista, The Hive Pizza, Pizza Art Wine and Speedy Fresh Pizza.

Clearly, we’re all looking for comfort as the national health crisis rages on. Read on for more from Medium.