Every Trader Joe's Frozen Pizza, Ranked

Pizza could be synonymous with perfection. The crispy-edged yet chewy-inside crust topped with full-bodied tomato sauce and sizzling cheese is all you need — but go ahead and zhuzh it up with pepperoni, peppers, or pineapple. We're not judging you. Unless, of course, you're choosing a bad pie.

But what about frozen pizza? Is every frozen pie a bad pie? While it may not have the same pizzazz as one that's fresh and made from scratch, frozen pizza is inarguably a convenient and affordable option. So it's time to welcome back our favorite source of everything creative, convenient, and delicious. Why yes, it's Trader Joe's!

Whether you're a classic cheese purest, a Neopolitan highbrow, or a vegan visionary, Trader Joe's is ready for you. But with so many choices, which ones are the best?

We've taken it upon ourselves to rank Trader Joe's frozen pizzas from worst to best based on a multitude of sometimes conflicting factors such as flavor, texture, satisfaction, innovation, affordability, and cohesivity. If that sounds like a lot of work and you don't have the freezer space to sample 14 different products, you'll love our rankings of Trader Joe's frozen pizzas from worst to best.

14. Gluten Free Cheese Pizza With a Cauliflower Crust

Discussing this Gluten Free Cheese Pizza With A Cauliflower Crust, we could go into the sauce and cheese, but we're all really tasting it to evaluate the crust. The other two components are fine, bland, and pretty unremarkable. Now for that vegetable crust. We discovered that it's not a perfect dupe for a glutenous one: Not even close. It's too thin, for one thing. The texture is a bit spongy, and it actually does taste a little like cauliflower. It also smelled faintly of steamed vegetables as we baked it.

We do still have a big unanswered question, however. What is a better gluten-free pizza alternative, cauliflower crusts or crust made with gluten-free flour? Considering how lackadaisical we felt about this one, we wonder if cauliflower could take a break when it comes to pizza. If you're also vegetarian, this is the best gluten-free you can do at Trader Joe's. But if you don't mind some meat, we found the other pizza to be a much better option for gluten-free consumers. We came away with a simultaneous appreciation for all the amazing things that cauliflower can do and an appreciation that we can eat gluten (because we have yet to find a passable gluten-free croissant, for example). But this pizza is a good gluten-free blank slate for someone who needs it.

13. Organic 3-Cheese Pizza

Among all the regional variations on pizza found across the U.S., from New York Thin Crust to Chicago Deep Dish to California multicultural fusions, you can still always find a basic cheese pizza à la Kevin McAllister. Kevin would probably eat this, but we don't recommend you do. Trader Joe's Organic 3-Cheese Pizza is a bit of a letdown for those seeking a premium frozen pizza. Despite using organic ingredients, this pizza falls short in terms of flavor and overall quality.

The crust is nothing to write home about, missing any discernible texture or taste and screaming "frozen pizza!" to us, both visually and upon eating. It's fairly dense, without any nice air pockets or downtown chew of a good slice. Furthermore, the cheese medley atop the pizza is mediocre and nondescript, melting down to nothingness. The tomato sauce on the pizza also seemed subpar, but maybe we'd get more of that "organic" taste if there was more sauce. Try another brand for a frozen cheese pie, order it out, or make it at home. Trader Joe's can't be perfect all the time!

12. Bambino Formaggio Pizza

Mini pizzas? Fun! Serve us one, and we're immediately transported back to childhood meals, trying not to burn the roof of our mouths on the piping-hot sauce and leaving the crusts on our plates (now we know that good crusts deserve respect.) These Bambino Formaggio Pizzas have a nice, cushy crust fully in keeping with childhood memories of make-your-own English muffin pizzas or even microwaved Pizza Bagels.

When a pizza is in miniature, it's only natural that you're going to be eating a lot of crust. The ratio of crust-to-center is much more skewed, so no matter the brand, don't be disappointed if your pie is less saucy. That's okay, especially with these guys, because the sauce isn't all that great, and it's a little too sweet and salty. Nothing artisan or artful here, just a basic mini cheese pizza. No cheese pulls, no fancy arugula topping and no strings attached: They're kid-friendly and will do the job in a pinch.

11. Organic Cheese and Tomato Pizza

This pizza is the casserole of pizzas. It's big, it's warm, it's familiar, and it's designed for easy sharing. The Organic Cheese and Tomato Pizza is the largest pizza currently offered by Trader Joe's, but quality bends to quality. The crust buckles under the expansive size and needs more flavor, and the toppings are sparse, with only a small amount of cheese and tomato sauce spread across the pizza.

We found ourselves trying to push the cheesier bites onto our individual slices, leaving the rest bare-bones and distinctly undesirable. While the cheese is organic, it's not particularly flavorful or high-quality, and the tomato sauce lacks any real depth or complexity. Overall, Trader Joe's Organic Cheese and Tomato Pizza is really no better than any other mass-market cheese pizza. The pizza is affordable and easy to prepare, and while it may not be the most delicious option out there, it's still a filling and satisfying meal that is good to have on hand for last-minute movie nights with multiple friends — especially if everyone has different topping preferences. You've just gotta find some common ground.

10. Bambino Pepperoni Pizza

Bambino Pepperoni Pizzas taste just like the Formaggio ones but with pepperoni. The pepperonis certainly aren't the most robust and meaty and are more like the regular, slightly greasy rounds you'd find on your average delivery pie. The sauce is the same serviceable sauce as its Formaggio cousin, and the cheese is the same blanket of serviceable cheese. It honestly just comes down to whether or not you're a pepperoni or cheese pizza person.

We think the pepperoni provides some nice lift and extra zest. Either way, it's personal pizzas and perpetual comfort food, so you can't really go wrong. But consuming one of these won't take the place of a good slice from your favorite local takeout spot — or some of the other surprisingly great items higher on the list. We suppose there are only so many ways a frozen mini pizza can be comparable to full pizzas, but these are solid contenders compared to other brands of mini pizzas. Add some pizza seasoning, a drizzle of regular old olive oil, and a voluminous side salad laden with parmesan shavings for a slightly upscale version of a truly easy meal.

9. Spizzico di Pizza

As we piled our carts high with pizza to the amusement of the other shoppers around us, we noticed that the store itself had plenty to say on the subject. From pizza seasonings to pizza-flavored squeaky Bread Cheese, TJs has fun with this flavor profile. The Spizzico di Pizza is the furthest departure from the typical pizza that we picked up that still counts as one of the gang. They are teeny-tiny and smaller than the Bambinos, perfectly bite-or-two-sized snacks. This makes sense since the rough Italian translation of "Spizzico" is "to nibble" or "to pick at." Let's say you were throwing a pizza-themed party with pizza-inspired apps instead of one big pie: Then these would be perfect. (This scenario makes sense in our minds, at least.)

Obviously, they aren't substantial enough for a full meal all on their own, and if you're looking for lots of vibrant sauce or layers of decadent cheese, these won't fit the bill. They're overly doughy and relatively bland. They are, however, a delightful, lightly pizza-flavored appetizer, snack, or side dish. We appreciate that a bite brings the breezier side of Mediterranean flavors instead of the heavier, saucier ones. And last but not least, no one will complain if your party's finger foods include tiny pizzas.

8. Vegan Meatless Meat Eater's Pizza

It's important to try new things in life and explore other ways of being. Even if you're dead set on sticking to your omnivorous diet for life, there's no denying that vegetarianism and veganism are better for the animals and the planet and may be the way of the future. We agree that it still has a long way to go, but many daring cheese-less "cheese" and meatless "meat" are actually really good. Don't expect them to be exact dupes for the real thing, but do expect them to be delicious food discoveries in and of themselves. At least when we say they are.

Vegan cheese is daring enough, but two kinds of vegan sausage and vegan pepperoni? That's shooting for the moon. As a team of mostly non-vegans, we did not much care for the oddly textured cheese that didn't melt in authentic style. The pepperoni was slightly flaccid, too, but we all thought the sausages were definitely moving in the right direction. And for only $5.99, even a passable vegan pizza is a great deal.

7. Gluten-Free Uncured Pepperoni Pizza

After we tried the Gluten Free Cheese Pizza With A Cauliflower Crust, our expectations for Trader Joe's celiac-friendly pies were low — especially when we saw that this one had a cauliflower crust. But here's the good news: We hope you like olives because as long as the toppings check out, the Gluten-Free Uncured Pepperoni Pizza is the way to go.

The crust is definitely different from the other cauliflower crusts because this one is more substantial and reminds us of the real deal. We had no problem with the peppers and onions because they complemented the pepperoni, but those olives might write off this pizza for some. The briny taste can be overpowering even when scraped off. Speaking of bold, the slightly spicy uncured pepperoni grabbed our attention enough to hide any crust imperfections. It's helpful to remember that, for frozen pizzas in general, more toppings mean more dynamic flavors that disguise the frozen reality. We have a handy resource for anyone looking to find the best gluten-free pizza that isn't frozen: our roundup of the best spots to get gluten-free pizza in the U.S. If you don't live near any of them, we're so sorry, but don't lose hope. Try one of these 11 gluten-free pizza crust alternatives if you want to make your own pie and avoid cauliflower altogether.

6. Pizza Margherita

The creative act of pizza-making is an art form at every level, and it can become a real labor of love, from hand-tossed, perfectly baked crust to hand-pulled buffalo milk mozzarella. No pizza displays this process in its purest form like the Pizza Margherita. And for us, it's those gorgeous green basil leaves decorating the ivory cheese that makes the whole thing beautiful. Basil imparts a floral sweetness that summons bright, long summer days and ties everything together in stunning Neapolitan style when we can find it on our slice. There is a brightness to this pie, thanks to the al fresco tomato "sauce" that's pretty much pure, juicy tomatoes rather than the usual thick, brick-red sauce.

We often find that this difference makes Margherita pizzas a little bland and dry, more like cheesy bread than a tender, cohesive slice. Trader Joe's was only ever-so-slightly dry, and the crust/tomato/cheese ratio wasn't bad. Our major critiques: The crust was a little too cracker-like, and it needed way more basil. (But we'd have a basil leaf on every bite if it were up to us!) The cheese melted nicely and did seem more pillowy and rich than most mozzarella. Overall, we found it superior to most frozen Pizza Margheritas we've ever tried, and for only $3.99, it's a great deal.

5. Organic Roasted Vegetable Pizza

This pretty Organic Roasted Vegetable Pizza tasted very summery to us. Every bite has some sort of sundrenched seasonal produce item on top, from zucchini to eggplant to bell peppers. We don't need to tell you this but don't buy this one if you hate vegetables on your pizza. You won't find any meaty sausage chunks or salty pepperoni over here. It's part of the reason we felt like we were eating flatbread at times, as opposed to a decadent pizza. The other part is that the tomato sauce took a back seat to the toppings and, specifically, the cheese.

The crust and sauce were "meh," but the cheese was one of the best of all the TJs picks. It's not parmesan, mozzarella, or feta: The box calls it "Fontal," which we can only describe as a cousin of fontina. If you've ever had fontina cheese, you know it melts beautifully to a fondue-like consistency, so it's a great pizza topper. A little drizzle of balsamic vinegar sounds perfect on this pizza, bringing some acidity to accentuate the roasted vegetable flavors. It's like putting a good vinegar and oil dressing on a hearty vegetable salad.

4. Pizza Parlanno

In this dynamic Trader Joe's Pizza Parlanno, you're getting a lot of delicious things. The diverse toppings are glued onto a seemingly slow-simmered, balanced sauce with a great mouthfeel. The variety really stimulates our taste buds, but best of all, it doesn't sacrifice quality for quantity. The baseline pizza is still quite nice, and no ingredient seems like an inopportune afterthought. It has three kinds of cheese, but unlike the Margherita, this one's about something other than the cheese or even the sauce or crust.

It's all about the toppings, including roasted bell peppers, onions, sausage, and pepperoni. There are actually 13 grams of protein per serving, and we could tell with every savory bite of meat. The combination of toppings is perfect, like a whole dinner recipe on a pizza crust instead of pasta. We'd definitely invite this pizza to a Friday night movie. It's satisfying, fun, and brimming with stick-to-your-ribs pizza flavor. Oh, and it doesn't have mushrooms like many multi-topping pizzas do, in case that makes or breaks your decision to buy.

3. Vegetarian Meatless Cheeseburger Pizza

We knew that we were taking our lives into our hands with this Vegetarian Meatless Cheeseburger Pizza. Either it was going to be mind-blowingly good or unbearably bad. It has two polarizing and potentially fatal components: Vegetarian "meat" and a total deviation from normal tomato sauce, mozzarella cheese, and an Italian flavor profile. Instead, the sauce is burger sauce, the cheese is cheddar, and the toppings are — you guessed it — the toppings that you would find on a fully loaded cheeseburger. As avid pizza lovers, we felt like we were traitors for enjoying it as much as we did.

It's hard to feel like this pie counts as pizza when only the form resembles the food we all know and love. Pickles on pizza? Well, they work, and in fact, our favorite bites had some of those sweet bread and butter pickle slices. The cheddar doesn't provide a stretchy cheese pull like mozzarella might, but it oozes just as tantalizingly as a patty fresh off the grill. And while we're on the subject, how about that meatless meat? It's fantastic. The vegetarian dupe is succulent and savory, actually almost too savory to pass as meat. We wish there had been more of it, something we never thought we'd say. Our biggest criticism is that by the time the edges were browned, the center of the pie got a little soggy under the weight of the toppings. Overall, this is an extremely fun pizza and a tasty surprise.

2. Roasted Garlic & Pesto Pizza with a Deep-Fried Crust

A deep-fried crust? This is not a drill, people. At first glance into the freezer case in Trader Joe's, we were riveted by this particular pizza: Roasted Garlic & Pesto Pizza stands out. It's a pretty inspired, creative pizza that manages to take tried-and-true, elegant Italian flavors and incorporate them in fun new ways. And what screams "fun" more than dunking your food in the deep fryer? Considering that's the big selling point here, it makes sense that we found a lot of crust on this pie. 

The flavorings – the smudge of pesto, the smatterings of garlic, the hint of chile — are designed to bring out the best of the flavorful crust. While some of the others on this list were really lacking in the bread department, this pie washed all those bad memories away. Then there's the cheese, which we could have had double the amount of. It's just so good: You can't go wrong with mozzarella, provolone, parmesan, and burrata. Despite the "deep-fried" part and the quadruple-cheese part, it's a surprisingly light slice that doesn't weigh you down. We all agreed that we'd found a new regular in our red Trader Joe's carts for sure.

1. Wood Fired Naples Style Uncured Pepperoni Pizza

While the packaging certainly makes this pizza look absolutely delicious, the "Wood-Fired" label sounds a little ersatz. Was each individual pie fired up on a quaint wood oven before being frozen and packaged up for Joe? We may never know. But even if the image we have of artisan pizza isn't quite achievable in reality, this Trader Joe's frozen product still comes pretty close. The crust does get a nice crisp char, even when just baked in the oven, as per the package instructions. Without all the decadence and extra greasiness of a deep-fried crust, or the tendency towards cardboard that can come with a thin crust, this one finds a happy medium. We agreed that it's definitely one of the best crusts of all the Trader Joe's pizzas, good enough to eat all by itself when the saucy pepperonis have run dry. The sauce is rich and bold, with a deep, slow-roasted tomato flavor. It almost reminded us of a good sun-dried tomato.

It's a simple pizza, but the elements are done with care and precision so as to show them off in their best light. Oh, we almost forgot: That pepperoni is the bomb. They have a smokey, peppery zing to them and seem like they could have flown off an Italian charcuterie plate and onto our slice of frozen pizza. The Wood Fired Naples Style Uncured Pepperoni Pizza is absolutely worth skipping a Friday night pizza delivery every so often.