Pizza is a type of flatbread that originated in the 18th century or early 19th century in the city of Naples, Kingdom of the Two Sicilies (today part of modern Italy). Pizza has since become popular in many parts of the world, especially the United States of America, where distinctly American style of pizza has developed. Pizza was made as the Ninja Turtles' favorite food as Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird often ate it for lunch while working on the original comics.
Some TMNT stuff really isn't for little kids.
Pizza occasionally appeared in the Mirage universe, but it never had the central role in the Turtles' diet as it did in other versions.
- "Totally Hacked!" - Using a million dollars he had in his pocket, Gnatrat buys a restaurant (employing Splinter as a waiter) and lures Supperman in with an All You Can Eat promotion. They prepare the final dish, which is unfortunately pizza, and it attracts the Ninja Turtles to the restaurant. Splinter begins to tell his sons to back off from the pie, but Gnatrat gets too absorbed in his “boss” role and starts ordering Splinter around. Incensed, Splinter feeds the pizza to the Turtles just to tick Gnatrat off.
- "The Treaty" - Leo is racing across the rooftops of New York, hoping to get back to April’s apartment with a fresh pizza. Unfortunately, he undergoes another one of the after effects from his recent time/space adventures and finds himself zapped to the world of Usagi Yojimbo yet again. While there Leo drops his pizza. Tomoe Ame picks up his trampled pizza box, disgusted by the quality of the contents within. Taking the pizza, Leo attempts to explain that normally it’s very appetizing, but before he can finish, the time/space effects wear off and he vanishes. Back in April’s apartment, the Turtles are a bit ticked that Leo’s taking so long with the pizza. Suddenly, he comes smashing through the window and lands face-first on the floor. Not only has he missed the entire movie and ruined the pizza, but now he’s broken April’s window.
- "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Attack!!!, part 1" - The Turtles are arguing over where to stop for dinner. Michelangelo suggests pizza, but Leonardo vetoes the idea, as pizza makes him gag.
- "The Name is Lucindra" - Raphael owes Lucindra a pizza after losing to her.
- "The Violent Underground" - Raphael eats pizza.
- "Raphael: Snapper" - Raph sits on the couch in front of the tube, nursing indigestion after eating six pepperoni pizzas. Looking to his left, he spots a glass bowl containing Snapper, a tiny snapping turtle. Amused, Raph plucks the turtle up by its tail, only to have it bite his finger. The pain and the indigestion prove too much for him, and Raph passes out. Suddenly, Raph finds himself in a nightmarish version of April’s apartment, approached by a humongous mutant snapping turtle. Tearing Raph’s throat out with his jaws, the snapping turtle says that pizza is no substitute for blood.
- "The Haunted Pizza" - A cheese factory drilled deep into the ground to create gigantic warehouses for their product. Eventually small portions of Ooo-Zah were able to make their way through hairline cracks into the factory, and begin growing on the cheese. Eventually the cheese was processed and shipped to pizza factories... and of course, April brings the pizza containing Ooo-Zah home. After they dispose of Ooo-Zah, Raph suggests they get a REAL pizza… just from a different restaurant.
- "Memories of the Future" - Casey passes out in front of the tube, having eaten too much pizza.
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles/Flaming Carrot Crossover "Land of Green Fire, Part 1" - Professor Daub, Colonel Blade and the Turtles decide to break for pizza.
- "Splinter Cell" - Michelangelo, using his nunchakus to deflect several slices of pizza being hurled in his direction.
1987 TV series / Archie
The 1987 cartoons are, along with the comics based on them, a TMNT universe in which the Ninja Turtles all share an intense affinity for pizza, particularly Michelangelo. They are hardly ever seen eating anything else; however they are very flexible with what toppings they like on their pizza, experimenting with all sorts of items in every possible combination including:
- "Turtle Tracks" - Pepperoni and ice-cream, Jellybeans and mushrooms, Anchovies and peanut butter, Whipped cream, Sashimi, Bananas and sausage.
- "Enter the Shredder" - Breakfast cereals ( Corn flakes, Raisin Bran, Choco puffs )
- "Return of the Shredder " - Caramel and chocolate fudge ( Michelangelo had it last night )
- "Enter: The Fly" - Anchovies and gazai leaves
- "Beneath These Streets " - Granola and licorice
- "Attack of the 50-Foot Irma" - Chocolate Fudge with extra garlic
- "April Fool" - Pepperoni and marshmallow
- "Green With Jealousy" - Peanut butter and clams
- "Pizza by the Shred" - Peanut butter and avocado with extra pickles
- "Super Bebop & Mighty Rocksteady" - Marshmallow and asparagus
- "Case of the Hot Kimono" - Butterscotch and onions with anchovies
- "The Making of Metalhead" - Tea and toast
- "Leatherhead Meets the Rat King" - Chocolate sprinkles and clam sauce
- "The Gang's All Here" - Chocolate chip
- "The Big Blow Out " - Pepperoni and hot fudge
- "Superhero for a Day" - Pepperoni with pickles, Mushroom and arugulas
- "Slash - The Evil Turtle from Dimension X" - Jellybeans and sausage
- "Funny, They Shrunk Michelangelo "- Butter and salami with double yogurt topping
- "Leonardo Versus Tempestra" - Shredded coconut and sweet pickle ( Leonardo's favorite )
- " Splinter Vanishes " - Strawberry surprise with anchovy sauce ( The reason why Michelangelo was fired from his cooking show )
- "Michelangelo Meets Mondo Gecko" - Hot oatmeal
- "Raphael, Turtle of a Thousand Faces " - Tuna fish, peanut butter and grape jelly
- Sword of Yurikawa - Guacamole and marshmallow, Anchovy and hot fudge
- "Too Hot to Handle" - Chocolate Fudge, sardine, chili pepper with plenty of whipped cream
- "Nightmare in the Lair - Popcorn
- "Polly Wanna Pizza " - Anchovies and bananas
- "Turtles on the Orient Express " - Goulash
- TMNT: Adventures special #11: "The Fifth Turtle" - Double anchovies and black olives ( Splinter's Favorite )
- TMNT: Adventures special #10: "A Perfect Evening" - Peanut butter and jelly ( Made by Mikey )
- TMNT: Adventures special #5:"Yohoho! and a Bottle of Mutagen" - Marshmallow and swiss, Pepperoni, onion and bacon, Double cheese, broccoli capers.
- TMNT: Adventures #6:" Of Turtles and Stones and Mary Bones " - A large whole wheat with mushrooms, onions ( One quarter hold requested by Raphael ) , peppers, black olives, extra cheese, lean ground beef, italian sausage and pepperoni, rhubarb, kiwi fruit, fried clams and peanut butter cups.
- TMNT: Adventures #45:"Mutations " - Double cheese, pepperoni, mushroom and bacon. (during splinter's birthday)
The Turtles always get their pizzas by going on the streets to a pizza parlor, dressed so no one could see that they are mutant turtles. Sometimes all four go, sometimes only one goes.
Pizzas are also the Turtles' weakness. The Shredder is aware of this, as many of his plans to destroy them involve pizza (like the episodes "The Case of the Killer Pizzas", "Pizza by the Shred" etc.).
In some other TMNT universes, the Turtles eat other things, mostly sushi.
Some TMNT stuff really isn't for little kids.
2003 TV series
Pizza occasionally appeared in the 2003 TV series. Though not as much as they are also seen eating things such as Chinese food, Barbeque Soy Chips, Scrambled eggs and even ice-cream.
- "Attack of the Mousers " - The Turtles are seen eating pizzas as babies during the flashback of their origin.
- "Darkness on the Edge of Town" - Michelangelo ate pizza off-screen
- "The Way of Invisibility" - Casey Jones eats pizza.
- "Nano" - Leonardo was seen sleeping with a slice of pizza in his hand
- "The Shredder Strikes, Part 1" - Michelangelo talks about pizza.
- "The Shredder Strikes Back, Part 1" - You can see open pizza boxes when the turtles are sleeping.
- "The Lesson " - The kid Turtles are seen eating Pizza while Splinter is lecturing them to not go up to the surface.
- "Grudge Match" - Splinter mentions wanting to eat pizza as he teaches Mikey a lesson in karma as declares that he's ready for training in his rematch with Kluh.
- "Prodigal Son" - We see Angel delivering a pizza ( which is actually a note from Leonardo ) to April's antique shop as the Foot spy on them. Also in the same episode when Leo is about to go out and get some supplies, Mikey requested Leo to get some Pizza, Chinese Food and some Kibble for Klunk. He only got them Chinese food in the end...
- "Enter the Dragons, Part 2" - Michelangelo talked about wanting pizza at the end of the episode.
- "SuperQuest" - The Admin Wizard's player can be seen sleeping with a pizza box next to him.
2012 TV series
Similar to the 80s cartoon, the Turtles heavily enjoy consuming pizza, which they've grown to love since the first episode of the series. In "Karai's Vendetta", it was also confirmed that they, mostly Mikey, place strange toppings on their pizzas ( such as shrimp and sardine).
- Rise of the Turtles, Part 1 - In their fifteen years growing up in the sewers, the Turtles only ever ate algae and worms prepared in various dishes. When they were finally allowed to go up to the surface, Raphael playfully scares a pizza delivery guy and causes him to drop a box of Antonio's Pizza-Rama pizza. Not knowing what it was at first, the Turtles investigate it and Michelangelo volunteers to taste it. It was so good (his brain exploded from the flavor) Mikey at first tried to convince his brothers it was terrible so he could have it all to himself, but they weren't convinced - after eating the pizza they determined it was a huge improvement over worms and algae. Pizza had since become the Turtles' favorite food, particularly Mikey's.
- Never Say Xever - After saving his life, Mr. Murakami offers a reward to the Turtles, he asks what would they like to eat and as they answered pizza, Murakami created a new recipe, Pizza Gyoza.
- It Came From The Depths - Mikey blended some pizza while trying new recipes, creating a "pizza milkshake", the P-Shake. None of his brothers liked the novelty, but Leatherhead fell in love with another of Mikey's recipes, the Pizza Noodle Soup.
- New Girl in Town - Mikey was revived with a slice of pizza after a fight with Snakeweed left him unconscious.
- Parasitica - When trying to get Leo back to his normal self, the Turtles offer him some of his favorite pizza, pepperoni, jalapeños and jelly beans. But it was actually Mikey's favorite.
- Pizza Face - Antonio turns into a mutant pizza man, who creates mind controlling pizzas, but Mikey defeats him by eating him up.
- The Invasion, Part 2 - When permanently evacuating the Turtle Lair, Mikey puts Ice Cream Kitty in her red-and-white cooler, keeping her cold by placing her between two boxes of Hellio's frozen pizza.
- The Croaking - Mikey watches Crognard The Barbarian with Ice Cream Kitty while eating Hellio's pizza. In the process, he makes a huge mess of the farmhouse's living room, managing to get slices of pizza stuck to the ceiling and walls. This is the first major appearance of Hellio's being eaten; it is distinctly different from other pizzas shown in the series in that all its slices are square-shaped.
- Vision Quest - Mikey cooks some Hellio's pizza over a campfire.
- Return to New York - The Turtles find a new home in an abandoned Antonio Pizza-rama store.
- Clash of the Mutanimals - When Pigeon Pete visits the Turtle Lair and craves bread, Mikey introduces him leftover pizza crusts, which Pete instantly loves.
- Tale of the Yokai - After days trapped in the past without eating a single slice of pizza, Michelangelo makes one up out of wood, berries, and spider eggs. Later he forces Raphael to eat it.
Some TMNT stuff really isn't for little kids.
- In "Change is Constant " Raphael is digging through the dumpster hoping to find some food, he then finds a pizza box to which he is disappointed that it only has a few uneaten pizza crusts.
- The Turtles regularly eat pizza due to Michelangelo's friendship with Rupert's Pizzeria employee Woody Dirkins, who supplies them.
- Michelangelo went undercover as a pizza delivery boy during the City Fall arc.
Pizza slices are often used as a health power-up in the TMNT video games. In Turtles in Time, one type of pizza grants the Turtles temporary high speed spin attack and invulnerability and they shout out "PIZZA POWER!!!"
Some TMNT stuff really isn't for little kids.
The turtles also eat pizza in the film series. Except in the third film, they are not seen eating pizza but despite it not appearing, pizza does get mentioned. The second film begins with a sequence of people eating pizza all over New York.
At the end of Turtles Forever, the Mirage Turtles, after having encountered the 1987 Turtles and their 2003 counterparts, suggest to go eat some pizzas. Since the Mirage Turtles rarely ate pizza in the original Mirage comics, they are obviously influenced by their '87 counterparts.
In the new 2014 film the Turtle's couch is made of Pizza Hut's pizza boxes, the Turtles also appear in the Pizza Hut cheesy bites TV commercial. See more at: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2014 film)/Merchandise
Also in the 2014 film it is explained that April is the reason they love pizza as she fed it to them when they were little.
- Although Donatello stated that a pizza with 99 different types of cheese would be impossible, Johnny di Francesco, an Australian pizza maker and owner of the 400 Gradi pizzeria, took the challenge and created a 99 cheese pizza after the film.