It’s probably no surprise that pizza is one of the most popular foods in America, with approximately three billion pies sold every year, not including frozen pizzas, which add an additional billion to that figure.
That’s according to statistics compiled by howstuffworks.com, which noted that pizzerias represent 17% of all restaurants in the United States, making up a $30 billion-a-year industry.
If you’re like the majority of Americans, you’re eating pizza at least once a month. You may also be paying too much for your pizza, especially if you’re consuming it more than that.
But you don't have to be — here are seven ways you can save money every time a pizza craving hits.
1. Go big or go home? Maybe not
Buying the bigger pizza must be the best value, right? Consider this (warning, math ahead).
At Domino’s, the world’s biggest seller of pizza, you can order a large, 14-inch pie to be delivered for $15.99; a medium, 12-inch for $13.99; and small, 10-inch for $7.99. So which is the better deal?
If you remember your geometry, you can figure the 14-inch pizza winds up being 153.94 square inches, the medium 12-inch pizza is 113.1 square inches and the small is 78.54 square inches.
When you divide each of these area calculations by the price of each pizza, you find that for every square inch you’re buying, you’re paying 9.63 cents for the large, 8.08 cents for the medium and 9.82 cents for the small.
The medium pizza wins out every time in this scenario, but prices vary by pizzeria, so take a few minutes to do the math. You can even use this handy calculator for figuring out the area of a circle.
2. Opt for carryout
That same large pizza from Domino’s will cost you half – yes, HALF – that of delivery if you swing by the store and pick it up. Yep, just $7.99 for that large pizza with three toppings when you pick it up. (Of course, you'll spend money on getting to the shop, so you'll want to factor that in to your overall expense.) You can save even more when you ...
3. Use coupons
A lot of pizzerias, particularly national chains, offer coupons either on their website, through mailers or even on their delivery boxes. Use these in conjunction with special offers (like that carryout deal above) and you can save even more. Grabbing a store pizza? Don’t forget store coupons for those pre-made fresh and frozen pizzas.
4. Sign up for rewards
Those same chains (and some local joints) also let you sign up for rewards programs, so if you’re a frequent buyer, your discounts and deals can add up quickly. Your grocery store may also offer a rewards program.
5. Watch for promo codes
If you aren’t already searching for promo codes on basically everything you purchase – especially online – now is the time to do so. There are quite a few sites that compile them, so the easiest thing to do is search for the name of the company or product and “promo code” and see what pops up. Here are some other easy ways to save when shopping.
6. Use your cash back credit card
To save even more money on your pizza and other purchases, look for cash back rewards credit cards, particularly those with extra savings for food and restaurant purchases.
7. Make it yourself
At the end of the day, pizza is a pretty inexpensive way to feed the family. As cheap as it is, though, it’s almost always cheaper to make it yourself. The flour, salt and yeast for the dough are inexpensive, as are the ingredients for the sauce. Toppings can vary in price, but unless you’re going for super-premium ingredients, even those can be purchased for a reasonable amount.
Not only is making your own pizza a great way to save money, it’s also a lot of fun, especially if you have kids who can help assemble their favorite ingredients.
Making a meat lovers pizza doesn't have to break the bank. Check out these ways to save on meat.