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The 5 Most Overpriced Pizza Chains in 2024

Customers have spoken: these slices aren’t worth the price, anymore.

Not even the humble slice of pizza is immune from soaring prices. Food and labor costs have steadily risen over the past few years, and major pizza chains are responding with higher menu prices. Lately, customers have been noticing the extra few dollars on their receipts.

It's not just inflation that's to blame for the rising cost of pizza. CNET reports that all the ingredients you need to whip up even the simplest of pizzas—tomato sauce, mozzarella cheese, and flour—now cost more. So, it's no wonder pizza joints are upping their prices to keep up.

According to Slice of the Union's 2024 Pizza Index, the price of a large cheese pizza rose year-over-year in most states. The national average price for a whole pizza rose nearly a dollar, from $17.81 in 2023 to $18.33 in 2024.

For some pizza fans, the price increases are pushing the boundaries of what they're willing to pay. When a pizza craving hits, some customers are even heading to the grocery store for a frozen pizza instead, tricking it out with extra toppings and popping it in the air fryer. "Delivery pizza is so expensive now that it no longer makes sense to order it," one Redditor wrote. "You can get a great freezer pizza and make it at home for $8."

Indeed, some customers say these five pizza chains are pushing the limit—especially when delivery, in-app fees, and tips are factored in.

Pizza Hut

Pizza Hut
Jonathan Weiss / Shutterstock

Perhaps no major pizza chain has drawn quite as many customer complaints as Pizza Hut, which operates more than 6,500 stores in the United States alone. "I've tried giving Pizza Hut so many chances but every time I order it's always like 15$+ for a large one topping pizza that ends up being mid," wrote one customer on Reddit.

Commenters agreed, pointing out that Pizza Hut's rising prices simply don't match the quality of the pizza anymore. One wrote, "Pizza Hut has been in the decline in quality now for so long. The pizza isn't worth the price anymore. These are $10 pizzas, not $15-20." Another customer, writing in a different online forum, reportedly paid an astonishing $87 for two stuffed crust pizzas and 12 wings. "And that's without the tip," they added.

For those who still love Pizza Hut every once in a while, one Redditor offered a tip: "You have to look at the deals. Don't ever look at their normal menu."

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Round Table Pizza

round table pizza
Round Table Pizza / Facebook

Atlanta-based Round Table Pizza operates 400 restaurants in the U.S., but customers aren't always pleased with the pricing. Earlier this year, a Reddit thread pointed out that some Round Table restaurants were charging an extra 5% surcharge on all orders, due to minimum wage increases, among other fees. For some customers, the extra surcharge was pushing it, price-wise.

One Redditor replied: "I went on the app to order a Large Chicken Garlic Gourmet. It was $35 before taxes. $39.80 with taxes. Even with a discount code I got it down to $35. No thanks, I won't be coming back." Other customers agree, with one writing, "Seriously. A couple years ago we ordered an X-Large and it came out to nearly 50 bucks. Haven't been [back] since."

According to another aggrieved consumer, Round Table is just one of many quick-service restaurants that "don't know their place," alongside McDonald's, Dairy Queen, Carl's Jr., and Wendy's. "I can afford to go to these places, but I just can't bring myself to bother. Not worth what you get."

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Papa John's

Papa Johns
Bruce VanLoon / Shutterstock

Customers reportedly began turning away from Papa John's following price increases at the Louisville, Ky.-based chain last year. North American sales fell by 1% during the second quarter of 2023, with CEO Rob Lynch citing price hikes as the main reason. "Some of the pricing … had gotten out in front of where the consumer was willing to spend," Lynch said during an earnings call last August, according to CNN.

You don't have to look far online to find that customers were, indeed, pulling back on spending. "Reasons why I don't order from here anymore, these prices are ridiculous," one Redditor posted. The accompanying photo showed a Shaq-a-Roni pizza retailing for $17.99 and an Epic Pepperoni-Stuffed Crust one topping pizza for $18.99. After a $2 off coupon, $8.99 in delivery, and $3.14 in taxes, the customer was looking at $47.11 for two pizzas—and that's before tipping the delivery driver. "At these prices I'll never eat there again," they wrote.

Another Redditor was less than pleased when they realized their go-to stuffed crust pizza order increased from around $13 to $17. "At $17 I can't justify buying stuffed crust pizza anymore. You're basically paying the price for two whole pizzas," they wrote.

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Little Caesars

little caesars
Jonathan Weiss / Shutterstock

Little Caesars is famous for its signature $5 Hot-n-Ready pizza and Crazy Bread. But in 2022, the chain made headlines when that $5 Hot-n-Ready pizza no longer cost, well, $5. Though the "new and improved" pizza supposedly included 33% more pepperoni, the higher cost of $5.55—the chain's first price increase in nearly 25 years, according to CNN—had customers worried.

"Am I Going Crazy or Have the Prices Gone Up an Insane Amount?" one customer posted on Reddit last year. "I always used to get the ExtraMostBestest pizza, and if I recall correctly those pizzas were about $6 and some change. But now they're almost $10??? What gives??? That's a 30-some percent price increase." The accompanying screenshot shows the pizza priced at $9.49, and that's before tax and tip, alongside a Classic Pepperoni priced at $8.49. One commenter did the math, replying, "That's a 63% and 59% increase."

Despite the price increase, Little Caesars maintained that the pie was still the "country's most affordable price," compared to competitors like Pizza Hut and Domino's, which can cost between $13 and $16 for a similar pepperoni pizza. Indeed, one Reddit user pointed out Little Caesars is still cheaper than competitors: "Compared to Pizza Hut I'll take these prices. Once me and my dad had delivery of one large pizza from Pizza Hut. And it was like $35."

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Jonathan Weiss / Shutterstock

Domino's Pizza is the country's leading quick-service pizza chain, raking in over $9 billion in U.S. sales in 2023. But nowadays, many customers say it's only worth ordering from Domino's if you have a coupon. Last fall, a Reddit user posted a screenshot from the Domino's app for six large pizzas that totaled $104 before a deal cut that total in half. "Every time I place an order it always says I save like 50%," they wrote, wondering who would ever pay $15 for a one-topping Domino's pizza.

In fact, Domino's hit a rough patch last year in which its stock shares dropped more than 11% after a price hike affected fourth-quarter sales. The number of delivery orders fell that quarter, too, by 6.6%.

However, one self-described Domino's employee recently posted online that they are tired of seeing people complain about the chain "supposedly being so expensive" just because some customers don't leverage long-running and well-known coupons and deals.

The moral of that story? Check for coupons before ordering your pizza, pick up when possible rather than delivery, and skip third-party delivery apps, which tend to increase prices.

Emily Latimer
Emily Latimer is a freelance journalist with a passion for food and restaurants. Read more about Emily