By Brian Hernandez

Editor’s note: Can you really trust ChatGPT to suggest recipe ideas for your pizzeria? We put the generative AI tool to the test, soliciting eight ideas for pizza topping combinations for the summer season. Then, we presented them to our own test chef, Brian Hernandez, coordinator of the U.S. Pizza Team, for his appraisal. Here’s what we learned:

I want to preface this article by saying that most of these AI recipes have flavors that make sense: The Singularity gets pizza, but only singularly. There is a wealth of pizza knowledge out there, provided by AI’s unwitting “feeders.” That being said, now and then The Singularity needs to be checked for accuracy and good taste.

I would rate all of the following topping combo suggestions in the B+ category. Are they fun summer flavors? Yes. Are they common? For the most part, yes. Do they expand on the typical pizza flavors found online? Not necessarily; it’s most likely basic copy-and-paste, but there are a couple here that’ll make you think the Singularity Test Kitchen was in high gear. 

Are these topping combos edible? Absolutely, yes. Could The Singularity have expanded a little more on the flavors? Absolutely, yes. With the vast expanse of the entire internet, if provoked and directed, you could get a recipe specifically tailored for any flavor profile, menu item, event type and beyond. It’s all about teaching our new AI overlords what we mere humans really like to eat and how to keep the culinary side of this industry innovating and evolving.

Related: How the leading chains are using AI to sell more pizza

The Singularity suggested some relatively easy but tasty pizzas that could light up a brand-new pizzeria’s menu. The use of fresh ingredients is key for that summertime feeling, but you want something that’s light as well—something you could scarf down, feel gastronomically satisfied, and still go play a quick nine holes of frisbee golf afterward.

But things can also get tricky due to the high moisture content of most fresh veggies, especially items like peppers and tomatoes.  So take care to wick away some of the excess moisture from some fresh veggie items, but don’t dehydrate them either. Just wipe the veggie’s brow. 

Let’s see what we’ve got here:

AI Suggestion No. 1: Caprese Pizza
Top your pizza dough with sliced tomatoes, fresh mozzarella cheese and torn basil leaves. Drizzle with balsamic glaze just before serving for a burst of flavor.

If You Ask Me:
Basic. Seems slightly redundant if you have a caprese salad on the menu and/or a Margherita pizza. But a lot of pizzerias offer this as a pizza style. It will be especially good on a light crust, something akin to Neapolitan style. 

AI Suggestion No. 2: Grilled Vegetable Pizza
Grill up some seasonal veggies like zucchini, bell peppers and eggplant. Arrange them on your pizza dough with a layer of marinara sauce and sprinkle with feta or goat cheese for added flavor.

If You Ask Me:
This one has a Greek vibe to it, with the cheese choices. Again, this could be a very wet pizza. Another good tip is to use less of each topping. As a good rule of thumb to allow for a better cook and make more money: The more toppings the pizza recipe calls for, the less of each topping I would use. Plus, each topping’s flavor will stand out more. 

AI Suggestion No. 3: Peach and Prosciutto Pizza
Spread a layer of ricotta cheese on your pizza dough, then top with thinly sliced fresh peaches, prosciutto slices and arugula. Finish with a drizzle of honey for a sweet and savory combination.

If You Ask Me:
Yes, I love these flavors. I have made a similar pizza with pear, but peach would be a game changer. Plus-1, Singularity! Also, arugula is kind of my weakness. Anything with arugula gets a vote from me. The honey may be unnecessary, but why not? You could even add a little spice with some hot honey. 

AI Suggestion No. 4: Shrimp and Pesto Pizza
Spread pesto sauce on your pizza dough and top with cooked shrimp, cherry tomatoes and crumbled feta cheese. Garnish with fresh basil leaves before serving.

If You Ask Me:
I’m not a fan of seafood, but I know these flavors, and I think they pair well. ChatGPT is leaning very Greek with a lot of these flavors, but Greek pizzas do tend to gain popularity in the summer months due to their lightness and full flavors. 

AI Suggestion No. 5: BBQ Chicken and Corn Pizza
Use barbecue sauce as the base for your pizza dough, then add shredded cooked chicken, grilled corn kernels, red onion slices and a sprinkle of cheddar cheese. Finish with a drizzle of ranch dressing for a tangy twist.

If You Ask Me:
I’m a big fan of using corn in pizza. Love the pop! I would order this one. Something like this could be adapted by shredding your chicken and tossing it in a sauce, lightly topping the crust with hot sauce or just olive oil, then adding more drizzles, as mentioned. Play with the flavors of different sauces working together. I personally like tossing the shredded chicken in the barbecue sauce because that will coat it just enough; then I usually only put olive oil on the pie. It doesn’t overwhelm me with sauce, giving me room to play with other flavors on the pie. But that doesn’t always work. Sometimes the pies lack flavor because of it, but others thrive with that freedom. 

AI Suggestion No. 6: Margherita Pizza with Watermelon
Instead of traditional tomatoes, use sliced watermelon as the base for your Margherita pizza. Top with fresh mozzarella cheese, basil leaves and a sprinkle of sea salt for a refreshing summer twist.

If You Ask Me:
I’m not sure. I have seen watermelon on pizza. When I was on a vegan diet, watermelon was suggested as a substitute to make vegan steaks. I love watermelon and would absolutely try this one, but the water content would be insane. (They don’t call it a “dry cracker melon” for a reason!) At first—until I verified that the recipe called for “sliced” watermelon—I thought maybe ChatGPT meant to hand-crush the watermelon and make it into a sauce, as you would with tomatoes. You’d still have the same problem with water content, but that intrigued me. If I make this pie, I will definitely try that variation. 

AI Suggestion No. 5: Pesto Veggie Flatbread Pizza
Spread pesto sauce on a flatbread crust and top with grilled summer vegetables like asparagus, cherry tomatoes and yellow squash. Add crumbled goat cheese and pine nuts for extra flavor and texture.

If You Ask Me:
I never liked pesto until Roberto Caporuscio of Don Antonio fed me his pizza fritta with a pistachio pesto base and sausage. This is another Plus 1 for The Singularity, solely for the use of asparagus, which is not used often enough on pizza, in my opinion. I think a lot can be done with it. Pine nuts also lend a great summer feel and taste to any pizza. 

AI Suggestion No. 8:
Berry and Goat Cheese Dessert Pizza
: For a sweet treat, spread a layer of mascarpone cheese on your pizza dough and top with fresh berries such as strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries. Drizzle with honey and sprinkle with crumbled goat cheese for a delightful dessert pizza.

If You Ask Me:
No notes. Man! They’ve got one busy goat in the Singularity Test Kitchen!

Food & Ingredients