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A Guide to the Different Types of Pizza Sauce


Everybody has their favorite pizza toppings, a favorite style of pizza crust, and a decided stance on the pineapple-on-pizza debate. Still, comparatively few people are as adamant about the sauce that lays between the crust and the toppings.

Here at Dogtown Pizza, you can count our team as a part of that minority. We perfectly match the sauces we use to the ingredients that top our pizzas, resulting in mouthwatering flavor combinations. Read on to learn about the different types of pizza sauces (some of which are well-known, and others not so much) and the best toppings to put on them!

Traditional Tomato-Based Pizza Sauces

You can’t go wrong with a traditional tomato-based sauce. Flavored with ingredients like minced garlic, onion, oregano, basil, and other herbs and spices, red pizza sauce is the go-to choice for many people. Heck, some people might not even realize that there are pizza varieties out there that use non-tomato-based sauces.

red-sauce-on-pizzaNow, this may seem pretty straightforward; it’s just sauce made from tomatoes, right? However, there are thousands of variations of red pizza sauce out there.

Basil, in particular, gives pizza that classic Italian flavor. We might be biased, but we love the flavor combinations present on our signature Tomato Basil Garlic pizza (we thought about adding more toppings, but the sauce really sings on this pizza, so we had to stop right there!).

If you must, some mushrooms or other vegetables would be a flavorful addition that doesn’t clash with the already bright flavors of basil and tomato.

Spicy Red Sauces

Spicy sauce needs something savory to balance it out; beef and pepperoni are perfect choices. Other good toppings for spicy pizza include sausage, mushrooms, and bacon. If the sauce doesn’t have enough spiciness for your taste buds, add some extra red pepper flakes for more kick!

Peppery Red Sauce

When describing a sauce as “peppery,” that can mean a lot of things. Roasted red pepper, cayenne pepper, black pepper, and red pepper flakes are all common ingredients in pizza sauce. Adjusting the ratios gives different levels of heat and complexity. Like spicy sauces, peppery sauces work best with savory flavors, such as chicken, steak, bacon, and mushrooms.

Sweet Pizza Sauces

The sweetness in sweet pizza sauce comes from tomatoes and added sugars (brown sugar works exceptionally well). Sweet tomato sauce doesn’t work quite as well with savory and salty flavors and is less common than the other sauces mentioned above. Still, it is undoubtedly delicious and a favorite for many people all over the world.

Popular Non-Tomato-Based Pizza Sauces

These non-tomato-based pizza sauces are no slouch when it comes to their fanbases and are undeniably delicious!

pesto-saucePesto Sauce

Made from olive oil, garlic, parmesan cheese, roasted pine nuts, a whole lot of basil, and a touch of lemon, pesto is a delicious alternative sauce option for a plain cheese pizza that still packs a lot of flavors! Pesto is great for those who are fans of flavor but aren’t huge fans of tomato sauces.

People have been changing up their pesto recipes in recent years, swapping out pine nuts for walnuts, adding spinach for extra nutritional value, garlic cloves, and more! If you are a fan of tomato sauce and pesto, take your favorite Dogtown Pizza and add a little pesto to the top after it is finished baking. It is life-changing.

Creamy Alfredo Sauce

Alfredo sauce is a rich white sauce made with butter, heavy cream, cheeses, and pepper. It combines well with ingredients that can hold their own against its strong flavor, like olives, artichoke hearts, roasted peppers, bacon, steak, chicken, mushrooms, and sun-dried tomatoes.

White pizza lovers let themselves be known whenever their friends and family are ordering pizza. If you have not tried Alfredo sauce on pizza, we highly suggest that you give this indulgent sauce a chance!

Like pesto, add Alfredo sauce to the top of your favorite Dogtown Pizza. It pairs exceptionally well with our ooey-gooey cheese, crispy crust, and flavorful pizza sauce.

Unexpected (But Delicious) Specialty Pizzas and Their Sauces

The term “pizza sauce” kind of changes once you dive into more specialty slices. Although many people instantly think of red or Alfredo sauce for yummy saucy goodness, pizza makers are breaking boundaries with delicious, unconventional sauces.

barbeque-sauceBBQ Sauce Isn’t Just for Ribs

We could probably write a whole article about the different types of BBQ sauces out there, but we like it St. Louis-style, so we’re going to ignore all the others for the sake of simplicity. The best toppings for a pizza with BBQ sauce are any ingredients you’d throw on the grill. We prefer chicken, bacon, ham, and pineapple.

No Bones About It – People Love Hot Wing Sauce

When you hear “spicy pizza sauce,” you might be thinking of the spicy red sauces we mentioned earlier… but we’re thinking hot wing sauce! Our Hot Wing Pizza here at Dogtown has been a top seller since we released it to the public.

Wing sauce is a combination of hot sauce, butter, vinegar, and spices. Hot wing pizzas are best served with chicken, mozzarella cheese, and possibly a drizzle of blue cheese or ranch.

Taco Pizzas with Salsa and Refried Beans

This one isn’t for everybody, but the people who love taco pizza, REALLY love taco pizza. Taco pizza typically uses salsa and refried beans in place of traditional sauces and is topped with Mexican-seasoned beef, cheese, shredded lettuce, and diced tomatoes. It sounds weird at first, but it is incredibly delicious.

Ranch (A Midwestern Delicacy)

Many midwesterners cannot live without ranch. People typically use this condiment as a dipping sauce for vegetables, chips, crackers, and of course, pizza, but chicken and bacon pizzas with ranch-flavored sauce have become extremely popular in this region of the country.

The tanginess of creamy ranch sauce actually works really well on pizza! Plus, ranch pairs well with various veggie toppings if you aren’t in the mood for a meat-lovers pizza.

Mayonnaise (Trust Us…)

Yeah, okay, we know what you’re thinking. “Mayo on pizza?! How could you?” However, you should hear us out first before you start rioting in the streets. Mayonnaise is one of those love-it-or-hate-it condiments, but there’s no denying that mayo is an essential ingredient for one of America’s favorite sandwiches: the BLT (that’s bacon, lettuce, tomato for the uninitiated).

Yes, BLT pizza is real, and my goodness, it is tasty! BLT pizza is incredibly simple. Spread mayonnaise on your pizza crust of choice, sprinkle on your favorite pizza cheese (we recommend something simple, like Monterey jack cheese), and top it with diced tomatoes, bacon bits, and chopped romaine. Give it a try and thank us later.

Hopefully, this guide to the different types of pizza sauces has opened your eyes to the possibilities. At Dogtown Pizza, we constantly innovate, experiment, and strive to create new pizza flavors and combinations.

If you’re in the mood for the best St. Louis-style pizza money can buy, make your way over to the freezer aisle in your local grocery store and pick up some Dogtown Pizza!

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