This National Pizza Chain Just Launched a Major Upgrade to Its Top-Selling Pie
Papa Johns is extremely proud of its fan-favorite Epic Stuffed Crust pizza. First launched in early 2021, the novelty pie quickly became one of its top-selling items, drawing in new customers willing to pay extra for the premium offering. But thanks to a fierce rivalry with Pizza Hut on the stuffed crust front, Papa Johns continues to innovate on this popular item.
The chain is now launching a stuffed crust 2.0, if you will, which adds pepperoni to the mix. Starting on April 25, the Epic Pepperoni Stuffed Crust Pizza will be on Papa Johns menus at participating locations nationwide. Why stop at cheese when you can have the most popular pizza topping also be part of the crust-stuffing fun?
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The new pie is made with the chain's original dough and hand-stuffed with both melty cheese and pepperoni slices. It is then topped with signature pizza sauce, more cheese, and your choice of toppings. A large one-topping pie will be selling for $13.99.
According to Chew Boom, however, Papa Johns rewards members will likely get early access to the new item about a week earlier through the chain's app.
While stuffed crust pizza was originally invented by Pizza Hut in 1995, Papa Johns has been able to quickly make up for lost time with the rapid success of its copycat pie. In the first seven months of the Epic Stuffed Crust pizza's tenure on the menu, Papa Johns domestic sales grew by almost 15%. In fact, the new pizza was credited as one of the major drivers of growth for the chain in 2021, which saw an almost 30% sales increase over the pre-pandemic 2019.
Calling the stuffed crust customers the "the most valuable pizza customers in the industry," CEO Rob Lynch said the new offering isn't going away any time soon.
"We launched Epic Stuffed Crust in January of 2021 and it set a new, ongoing customer sales level. I mean, it really took our business up significantly. It brought in new customers and traded current customers up," he told QSR Magazine last year. "We've been able to sustain that for the balance of the year. It's become a new part of our business versus just an LTO or some temporary blip on an incremental volume."