Do You Know Italian Food Other Than Pizza?

Jennifer Post

Image: Synergee/E+/Getty Images

About This Quiz

Pizza is a staple in Italian cuisine as it is in America. The types of pizza are vastly different, but the truth remains the same that almost everyone loves pizza. But Italy has so many other foods to offer! Some of them have made their way to America, some have managed to stay in the boot-shaped country, and some Italian dishes you'll find in America don't even exist in Italy, like fettuccini Alfredo. Don't get it twisted, though. Places like Olive Garden are so satisfying, but a lot of their dishes aren't native to Italy. 

So which dishes are straight from Italy? Pizza is said to be invented in Italy and is serious business in Naples, and to even make true Neapolitan pizza, you have to receive a certification. But there are so many other foods out there of Italian origin that those families and households eat on a daily basis. If you're someone who is deeply interested in food, you might already know most of these, but if not, get ready for the challenge! Maybe even take some inspiration from this quiz and test some of these dishes in your own kitchen. You can blow people away by making real authentic Italian food right in your non-Italian kitchen. So how many other Italian foods besides pizza can you name? Take this quiz to find out!

You might love this classic Italian soup so much you'll be yelling out "mine!" so no one touches it! Which is it?

Minestrone soup typically consists of vegetables, pasta or rice and is a bit thicker than normal broth soups. There's no exact recipe so cooks are free to choose their additional ingredients and other flavorings.

Take your mortar and pestle and whip up this sauce that actually gets its name from the equipment. Which is it?

If you want to make pesto in the traditional way, you'll need a mortar and pestle. Each ingredient gets crushed against the sides of the bowl-like mortar. It's basically an ancient food processor that's still used widely today.

This fancy name for a tomato sauce really does deserve all of the pomp and circumstance it receives. Can you name the sauce?

Sometimes the simplest things can be the most difficult but also the most delicious. If you're using more than five ingredients for your Pomodoro, you're making it too complicated. All you'll need are crushed tomatoes, garlic, salt, pepper and basil.

Which traditionally sweet and sour Italian sauce can be used over meat or pasta?

Agrodolce comes from the words "agro" which refers to the sour taste, and "dolce" which means sweet. The ingredients can change, but it is usually made with a base of vinegar and sugar.

Primarily made from Fontina cheese, which melty dish also has eggs, milk and butter and is used as a dip for bread or vegetables?

Normal fondue is essentially just cheese and maybe some type of liquid and other add-ins. Fonduta, however, is a whole different beast. Fonduta is more of a cheesy custard that gets baked before serving.

A broth soup filled to the brim with seafood like clams, mussels and scallops sure does sound delicious. Which of the below soups will you want to say yes to?

Cioppino is a classic seafood soup with a tomato broth. It's often served with grilled sourdough bread or garlic bread if you get it in the US. Hopefully you're ready to do some work though, because getting the mollusks out of their shells is an adventure.

It's light, it's airy and it's kind of flat. Which bread is sturdy, but not baseball bat sturdy?

Making ciabatta is an art, and there's a very specific process to get it right. It has a loose crumb and lots of air pockets that create that incredibly light and fluffy inside that contrasts the crusty exterior.

If mile-high sandwiches full of Italian meats, cheeses and spreads are your game, this sandwich is your name. Don't muffle our excitement about it! Which Italian food is it?

There are lots of places you can get muffuletta sandwiches outside of Italy and they're actually pretty good. If you've got the right ingredients like a boule that you can hollow out, quality meats like mortadella and cheese like provolone, you're good to go. New Orleans is famous for this sandwich!

Drenched in olive oil, herbs like rosemary and tons of flaky salt, which Italian bread works for sandwiches, dipping or as a catch-all for pizza?

Depending on the region in Italy will depend on the process and toppings of the focaccia, but the principle is the same. It's a thick bread that is dimpled with your fingers to catch all of the olive oil and other toppings.

There's no classic bread specifically meant for this pressed sandwich, but there is a right pan for it. Which stacked Italian food is it?

Panini, or panino if you're just making one, is a pressed sandwich that can be made any which way. Cheese is a big component, as it gets nice and melty in the panini press. Think of it as an Italian grilled cheese.

If you're looking for a great Christmas dessert bread that isn't fruitcake or bread pudding, turn to one that will set the right tone for the winter holiday. Can you name it?

Originally from Milan, panettone is a sweet bread loaf that is traditionally given around Christmas time and to celebrate the New Year. It's also used for the same purpose in Argentina and Brazil among other countries.

Basically a savory turnover, which Italian food below is like pizza, but handheld?

A lot of people get stromboli and calzone confused, but the difference is simple. A calzone is folded in half and sealed while a stromboli is rolled on itself like sushi. Usually, a calzone also doesn't have sauce on the inside, while a stromboli usually will.

Which stuffed pasta, usually filled with meat and vegetables, is so good you'll want a lot of them?

It's different from ravioli in that it's a different shape and sort of folded in thirds rather than the filling being sandwiched between two pieces of pasta dough. However, the shape can vary based on location.

You might think that potatoes could never come together to make a dough, but which Italian food proves that there's no "no" in potato?

Boiled potatoes come together with flour and egg to form a cohesive dough that can be cut into little pieces to then be boiled again and crisped up in a pan with brown butter. People say they're like little pillows in your mouth.

The true version of which sauce is simply pancetta, egg yolks and parmesan cheese that gets tossed with the starchy, carb that is pasta?

The addition of bacon, peas and cream is definitely an American thing, as the real Italian version is much simpler. Most Italian dishes only require a few ingredients to be delicious and are amazing without any enhancements.

Also known as rice balls, which Italian dish combines risotto, mozzarella cheese and a crispy breaded exterior?

The most common filling is some type of seasoned meat and mozzarella cheese, but some people just opt for the cheese. It's creamy, it's savory, it's crispy and it's made even better after being dipped in marinara sauce.

Pick up some arborio rice, the classic one used for this Italian food, and get ready to create which creamy and cheesy rice dish?

Risotto, the main component of arancini, is created by slowly introducing liquid to the arborio rice, which gives off more starch than normal rice. This, with the addition of lots of parmesan cheese, creates almost a savory rice pudding.

This Italian dish is so on brand, you'll find it cooked basically the same way everywhere you go. Can you name it?

Bronzino is a type of fish, and the traditional way to serve it is whole. It can either be fried whole or prepared another way, and then the waiter will either break it down for you at the table, or you can take the adventure on your own.

If you sear meat like filet mignon or the less popular fish like carp, leave it mostly raw inside, freeze it and slice it as thin as humanly possible, you get which Italian dish?

Often served as an appetizer or antipasto in Italy, carpaccio was invented in 1950 by a bar in Venice. The most traditional is thinly sliced beef topped with olive oil and lemon juice, but some people will make the dish with fish.

You'll see this squid appetizer on many menus. Some will even serve the tentacles as well as the rings. Which is it?

Fried calamari has become an American staple as much as an Italian one. It can be battered or coated in cornmeal or breadcrumbs and then it gets fried. The toppings can vary, but the most traditional is just a squeeze of lemon.

Don't fret over this crustless baked egg casserole because it's as easy as pie. Easier even! Which Italian food is it?

The base of a frittata is eggs and milk, but the fillings you choose to put in are seemingly endless. It can hold up to meat, cheese and vegetables. It's also a great option for low-carb people who don't want the crust of a quiche.

You can't forget dessert! Which one below is a scoop of ice cream with sharp and toasty espresso poured over the top?

Traditionally, vanilla ice cream is used as the base, but you can use your imagination and create the affogato of your dreams. It's simple and covers the coffee and dessert all in one.

Italians love their desserts, even the frozen ones. Which treat below is really only half frozen, though?

Semifreddo literally translates to half-frozen. It's made in a loaf pan to keep its shape and is an ice cream dessert that eats like a cake. It's actually more of a frozen mousse than an actual ice cream.

Mix some shrimp with butter, lemon and garlic, toss with some spaghetti and you've got yourself which classic Italian dinner?

Scampi refers to the sauce of butter, garlic and wine and is most traditionally made with shrimp. However, chicken can also be used as a shellfish substitute and still be called scampi as long as the sauce remains the same.

This quiz is about Italian foods other than pizza, and this one still makes the cut, albeit by a small margin. Which Italian food is a mini version of the classic?

Pizzette means small pizzas. You take pizza dough and cut them into bite size circles. They are great as a starter or if you're having a cocktail party and only offering small bites. Top them the same you would regular pizza.

The word "salad" usually follows this term, but it's not the one you know and love. It might even require a cooking pan. Which Italian salad is it?

The main ingredient in a panzanella salad is bread. You read that right. Bread. Aside from that, you can add anything you want like grilled peaches, prosciutto or tomatoes. The possibilities are endless.

This classic Italian dish isn't topped with tomatoes, but rather toasted bread rubbed with garlic. Can you name it?

The bruschetta that is bread topped with a chopped tomato mixture is not the classic Italian version. Actually, the real version traditionally has no tomato at all unless the cook decides to rub the toasted bread with a halved tomato.

Translating to "twice-cooked," which sweet Italian cookie is best dipped in tea or espresso?

Classically flavored with almonds, this cookie gets baked in an almost loaf shape, then sliced on the bias to create long cookies, and then those get baked again. This double baking process makes for a crispy toasted treat.

Italians love their rustic dishes, and this pie with a freeform crust is no different. What is it?

No need for fancy pie plates or crimping of crusts. A crostata is a circle of pie dough with the filling piled in the center. The excess of dough then gets folded up over the filling to create a rustic look that requires no special skills.

The Italian words sound very close to what they mean in English, so which food below is essentially a rice salad?

It can be served either hot or cold, but traditionally cold, and is filled with other things like vegetables and cheese. It's mostly eaten in the summer as rice is a great vessel for fresh ingredients.

Italians love their rice almost as much as they love pasta, and which tuna and rice dish is at the top of the charts?

Riso tonnato just mean tuna risotto. You can use fresh tuna that you have cooked and shredded yourself, or make it easy and use canned tuna. If you go that route, make sure you get the stuff in water and not oil.

Make this spinach custard dish before you form a solid opinion about it. Which Italian food is it?

It's almost like a flan or other custard dish but made a savory way with the addition of plenty of spinach. It can be made with other things, but traditionally, spinach is the way to go. While other custards can be eaten cold, this one is best served hot.

Referring to poached white fish or the broth it's poached in, which Italian food is not as close to pizza as the name would suggest?

Literally translating to "crazy water," it most likely refers to the poaching liquid for the fish. It starts as water but is jazzed up and turned into broth by vegetables and some other fish bones or meat.

One half of fish and chips in England, which food is essentially fried cod in Italy?

It can be a traditional part of the seven fishes on Christmas Eve, or eaten any other time of year. Sometimes salt cod was used, but that was only when refrigeration of the fresh stuff wasn't available.

From Liguria, this stew is best for those chilly days, brr! Which one is full of seafood and a tomato broth?

Not to be confused with the creamy cheese, burrata, buridda is a fish stew with a tomato broth base. It originated in the Ligurian region and is usually slow cooked for hours. It can be done in a shorter period of time, but for the deep and developed flavor, slow is the way to go.

If you like to eat fried vegetables while telling yourself it's healthy, dive into a big bowl of which Italian food below?

Fritto means fried, while misto means mixed. So it's essentially a dish of mixed vegetables that get battered and fried. Top with flaky salt as soon as they come out of the hot oil for the most flavorful snack.

Meaning "rolls," you can make an eggplant kind, a pasta kind and even a meat kind. If you need a taste tester, we volunteer as tribute! Which food is it?

If you slice vegetables like eggplant and zucchini lengthwise, you can fill them meat or cheese and roll them up into perfect swirls of Italian flavor. The best part is, after the item is rolled, it gets baked with cheese on top.

Sandwich this rustic flatbread with meat and cheese to get one of the most delicious and simple dinners. Which one is it?

Spiadina is just a vessel for your favorite sandwich fillings. It can be folded in half like pita or naan to hold everything in, or you can have two separate pieces, but either way, this flatbread lends itself to some amazing sandwiches.

Roll up individual pieces of meat, or one big slab like a flank steak, with vegetables and brace yourself for this comfort of Italy. Which dish is it?

Pronounced bra-cheeo-lay, this meat dish is very simple and one that you'll find on the the tables of many families in Italy. It's another one of their rustic favorites, as you can basically use any vegetables you have on hand and a good cut of meat.

Sweet and sour isn't just for Chinese cuisine. Which Italian food dish combines eggplant and celery in a sweet and sour vinegar sauce with capers?

Caponata can be eaten as is for a side dish, or spooned on top of crostini for a take on bruschetta. You can adjust the amount of vinegar in it depending on how tart you like things, but traditionally it does tend to be heavy on the vinegar.

About HowStuffWorks Play

How much do you know about dinosaurs? What is an octane rating? And how do you use a proper noun? Lucky for you, HowStuffWorks Play is here to help. Our award-winning website offers reliable, easy-to-understand explanations about how the world works. From fun quizzes that bring joy to your day, to compelling photography and fascinating lists, HowStuffWorks Play offers something for everyone. Sometimes we explain how stuff works, other times, we ask you, but we’re always exploring in the name of fun! Because learning is fun, so stick with us!

Explore More Quizzes