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Pizza Size Guide: How Many Pizzas Do I Need?

Brian Greene
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by Brian Greene

Have you ever been planning a party and asked yourself, “How many slices in a large pizza?” The number of slices in a personal pizza isn’t critical unless you’re counting calories. It’s a different story when you’re sharing one of America’s favorite foods with family, friends, or coworkers.

Believe it or not, pizza slices are relatively standard across the board. Most national pizza delivery companies cut the same number of slices into every pizza of the same size. You’ll rarely find a pizza cut into an odd number of slices unless you opt for a square cut pizza.

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How Many Slices Per Pizza?


There are over 78,000 pizza parlors in the United States alone. That number is steadily growing. It stands to reason that they don’t all cut their pizzas the same way. However, most pizza places like to stick to the standards, so their customers know what to expect.

Here’s a quick guide to the number of slices you can expect to get from pizzas of various sizes.

  • Small Size Pizza: How many slices in an 8-10 inch pizza? The standard cut is 6 slices.
  • Medium Size Pizza: How many slices in a 12-inch pizza? The standard cut is 8 slices.
  • Large Pizza Size: How many slices in a 14-inch pizza? The standard cut is 10 slices.
  • Extra Large Pizza: How many slices in a 16-inch pizza? The standard cut is 12 slices.
  • Extra Extra Large Pizza: How many slices in an 18-inch pizza? The standard cut is 14 slices.

If you order a square-cut pizza, you’ll get four squares from a small, 16 from medium, large, and extra-large sizes. That doesn’t include the stray triangular corner pieces.  If you order a double-cut pizza, you’ll have twice as many slices per pizza. Order a no-cut pizza, and you’ll get…well, you can probably guess that one.

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How Much Pizza Can Satisfy 1 Person?

Now that you know how many slices are in a large pizza, your next question is probably how many people it can feed. To know what size pizza to order, you need to know how many mouths you’re feeding with all of that cheesy, crusty goodness.

So, just how much does one person need to be satisfied? That depends on a lot of factors. How hungry is the person? Are they small children or grown adults? What age are they? Will there be other food served?

Young children don’t often eat more than one or two slices because their stomachs are small. Kids also tend to get distracted easily, leaving their dinner plate in favor of more exciting activities.

Likewise, older adults tend not to eat much either. It might seem silly, but it can take a lot of energy to eat. If your body isn’t producing much energy to begin with, it will be tough spending all of it on too much food.

Teenagers and other people with fast metabolisms tend to eat four or more pieces per person. Your average teenage boy can probably swallow an entire medium pizza with minimal effort. People with bigger stomachs often have appetites to match.

However, these suggestions are just general guides. Not everyone fits neatly into a category. Some children have massive appetites, and some people with big stomachs might not be in the mood for food. You can use past events as indicators of how much pizza each of your guests can eat.

If you’re serving chips, cake, hors d’oeuvres, and drinks, your guests will eat less pizza because there are other food options. If pizza is the full menu, expect your visitors to eat more of it. As a general rule, plan for two slices per person. Extra pizza will hardly ever go to waste.

How Much Pizza Should I Order?

Instead of going to each guest and asking, “how much pizza can you eat?” you can save time by guesstimating.

For Myself

If your pizza place doesn’t sell by the slice, one personal or small pizza is probably good enough for one person. Pizza is one of those foods that can be just as good the next day, so tuck your leftovers in the fridge.

For a Small Group

A small group of up to 5 people can usually devour one large pizza with no problem. That gives each person two slices with a couple of extras for a group of 4.

For a Large group

In gatherings of 10 people or more, the math starts to get tricky. Keeping with the guideline of two slices per person, here’s the breakdown by group size.

10 People – 2 large pizzas

20 People – 2 extra, extra-large pizzas and one extra-large or

                        Four large pizzas

30 People – 4 extra, extra-large pizzas and one small pizza or

                        Six large pizzas

40 People – 5 extra, extra-large pizzas and one large pizza or

                        Eight large pizzas

50 People – 7 extra, extra-large pizzas and one small pizza or

                        Ten large pizzas

60 People – 10 extra-large pizzas or

                        12 large pizzas

People sharing pizza

Any Other Tips I Should Know?

There’s a public speaking tip that says, “know your audience.” That tip carries over well to pizza planning. You’re a miracle worker if you can please everyone all of the time. However, knowing who you’re catering to will help you get your event off without a hitch. At any rate, you’ll have the menu part covered.

If you’re planning a corporate event that commemorates an anniversary, a holiday, or graduation, see if you can find a record of how much pizza they ordered from previous years. You might even keep a note for next year if the event is a recurring one.

The most popular pizza topping is pepperoni. Believe it or not, pineapple is one of the top ten most popular pizza toppings too. Behind pepperoni are mushrooms, onions, sausage, and bacon in that order. After that, favorites are extra cheese, black olives, green peppers, pineapple, and spinach. No, anchovies are not on the list.

If you don’t know what each guest likes on their pizza, a few simple rules will keep everyone happy. Always order at least one meat-free pizza per 20 people. Vegetarians often feel ignored or left out at events because nobody has thought to order something they can eat. Most people will eat a cheese pizza or a veggie deluxe, but a vegetarian won’t touch a meat-lover’s pizza.

Depending on availability, you might consider gluten-free pizza options. Many people who avoid gluten do it not out of preference but out of necessity. People with Celiac Disease can have severe allergic reactions to things like the wheat in pizza crusts. Other people avoid it as part of an overall diet plan.

When holding an event at a venue, it’s good to invite the staff to the leftover pizza. You’re sure to be welcomed back in the future if you remember the people who’ve helped you put on the event. Plus, you won’t have to deal with the leftover cleanup. It’s a win-win situation!

Unless you’ve lugged all of those pizzas in yourself, don’t forget your delivery driver. Provided you don’t have any problems with your order; it’s the courteous thing to do to leave a tip. Many drivers work for minimum wage or less and live off of their tips. Better tips often lead to better service the next time around.

If you’re serving alcohol at your event, be sure to find out what your local regulations are. Some places require you to serve food with alcohol. In that case, your pizza order will help you ensure you’re abiding by the rules. The county usually controls liquor laws. Try checking the county’s website where you’ll be hosting the event for regulations.

Final Thoughts

Pizza is a big hit with nearly any audience. It’s one of the most popular dishes in the world. In the United States alone, people consume 350 slices of pizza every second of the day! Outside of the U.S., pizza is served at tourist attractions to give people a sense of home abroad. Some cultures even have their own version of pizza or flatbreads.

Pizza doesn’t require a lot of prep time or utensils. A round of plates and napkins will do the trick! If you want more variety in your pizza offerings, you’ll have to add smaller pizzas and subtract from the large ones. Another option is to order half and half, so there are more topping choices per pie.

The next time somebody asks you, “how many slices in a large pizza,” you’ll be ready with a quick answer. The question of how many people that large pizza will feed is slightly trickier but still easy to figure out. Stick with the essential two slice per person rule, try to predict your guests’ hunger level, and take care of your helpers.

About Brian Greene
Brian Greene
Brian's relationship with food and culinary skills began when his mother involved him in the cooking process while growing up as a young boy in Colorado. Brian looked at as a chore he needed to do, but also became fascinated with the process and quickly was astounding his family with his creations.
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