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The Mystery of All Dressed Pizza


Have you ever heard of all dressed pizza? If my suspicions are correct, you probably haven’t.

Last night, I cheated on my vegetarianism with a few slices of pizza from the spot on the corner, but I had no idea my two slices of all dressed would be so revealing. It turns out, my girlfriend had no idea what a slice of all dressed is. I was baffled.

“All dressed, you know– mushroom, green peppers, pepperoni? It’s classic! You’ve never heard of it???” I thought I was going insane… how could she not know? She’s lived in about 5 cities across the US, and one in South America. I’ve only lived in Montreal… oh wait.

Turns out, all dressed pizza isn’t as universal as I imagined it would be. Google reveals that most of the people who talk about it are from Montreal. Did you know what it was? Is it local? I need to know. Post in the comments below– it will either reveal a great truth to us, or show everyone how naive I am. Either way, I’m going for it. :)

* Filed by Julien at 10:28 pm under random

Hi, I’m Julien Smith. I'm the founder and CEO of Breather.

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39 Responses to “The Mystery of All Dressed Pizza”

  1. Jon Tillman Says:

    “All Dressed” is to Canada what “The Works” is to America. In both places the allowed toppings that constitute all dressed or the works varies from place to place, but in both cases makes a sort of claim to being “proper” pizza, the maximal number of toppings that should be placed on a pizza. Fans of either the works or all dressed will decry any more toppings than their local version as “no longer pizza”.
    FWIW, Ruffles sells “all dressed” potato chips in Canada and “Works” in the US, with identical contents.

    • Loren A. Doone Says:

      I disagree with the 1st comment, which says that “All Dressed” is the Canadian equivalent of what we in the US refer to as “The Works”.

      The Works implies Everything on it. All Dressed seems to mean “sausage, green peppers, and pepperoni.”

      Everything ! = Sausage, Pepperoni, Green Peppers

  2. Seb Says:

    So, what do they call an all dressed elsewhere?

  3. Mat Says:

    That’s odd… I feel like i’ve heard the term used around Ontario and BC too. I’ll be interested to see what others have to say on this.

    A mystery indeed!

  4. Carl Mercier Says:

    I think “all dressed” is a Canada thing. Every time I ask for an all dressed pizza in the states, I get that weird look. Never got that anywhere in Canada, though!

    • David Says:

      When I first moved to Toronto from Montreal, I asked for a pizza all-dressed with anchovies. I got a blank look and had to explain that I wanted a pizza with mushrooms, pepperoni and green pepper and anchovies.

      Worse one of our local pizzerias does not offer anchovies as an option.

  5. Christopher S. Penn Says:

    Definitely not called that in the States.

  6. John Says:

    How about a “garbage pizza” as in one with everything on it. Some googling shows it to be somewhat popular. I have had some here outside of Phila.

  7. matt Says:

    i’m pretty sure all-dressed is local. in ontario it usually refers to chips. in the rest of the world, it’s barely used at all.

  8. Whitney Hoffman Says:

    no such creature here. we have hawaiians- usually ham or bacon with pineapple- that i’ve seen everywhere, but never heard of all dressed.

  9. jason (macedonia) Says:

    “all dressed”? never heard of that before…

    • David Says:

      When I was working late in Montreal, we’d phone Pine’s Pizza and order a couple of pizzas, one all-dressed and one all-dressed with anchovies. Always understood exactly what we wanted.

  10. Bill Deys Says:

    I believe Pizza Hut used to call this Triple Crown and Michelle, who worked at a pizza place, says it’s Deluxe.

  11. John Meadows Says:

    I hadn’t heard it, but I asked my wife – she has seen the term on frozen pizza (pardon the oxymoron) in the supermarket.

  12. Aaron Burcell Says:

    I’ve seen “all dressed pizza” on English translations of menus in Italy. Maybe the euphamism didn’t make it to the States yet… sorta like the recent mullet-hairdo reprise.

  13. Matt Forsythe Says:

    I’m pretty sure it’s a local term. In Ontario, All-Dressed usually refers to chips.

    I wouldn’t leave anything as serious as pizza toppings to shorthand.

  14. hugh Says:

    sorry, it’s Montreal-only. one of our quirks.

  15. Justin Simonsen Says:

    News to me and I love my pizza.

  16. chris rockwell Says:

    It’s a Canadian thing. It comes from the kanook saying “Well your all dressed up, we might as well fuck”.. and their love for pizza

  17. aliza Says:

    I remember you mentioning this on the weekend (it’s Canadian of course, a Toronto classic as well), and then today I came across this: http://jam.canoe.ca/Books/2007/07/01/4305302-cp.html

    Funny how they mention butter tarts, as that’s a convo I had with my cousin this weekend – she’s from T.O. and living in Miami and was equally surprised by the lack of those south of the border.

  18. a-one Says:

    i’ve never heard that expression in my life

  19. JMCampbell Says:

    Where I’m from the closest that is to would be Supreme, but supreme usually also has olives and sausage. Do you have supreme in Canada? and while living in Pennsylvania and Florida, I’ve never heard of “All dressed” pizza.

  20. Moses Says:

    “All Dressed,” or “Deluxe” in southern Ontario is pepperoni, green peppers and mushrooms.

    It’s kinda weird, since when I go to a sandwich shop and ask for “tout garné” in Montreal — well, first they look at me funny and say “volo-vous dire ‘all-dressed’?” “uh… oui?”), then my sandwich has one of each topping, even the mint leaves and hot peppers.

    Ask for all-dressed on a pizza, and you get a small fraction of the toppings. No anchovies, no shrimp, no sundried tomatoes, no sweetcorn… just three, less dressings than some of the “gourmet” pizzas.

  21. Ella Says:

    it’s pretty specific to Montreal, even people in Toronto usually don’t know what it means. Also, Montreal pepperoni is different.

  22. Andrew Says:

    I’ve always called it “all-dressed”. Now that I think about it, the counter person usually replies with “Pepperoni, mushroom, onion, green pepper?”. To which I just nod and assume that he didn’t hear me properly because I was drunk.

  23. Chris Says:

    I’d just like to clear something up – The first commenter noted that Ruffles “All Dressed” chips are identical to “The Works” in America. This is not true. We had The Works in Canada for a brief period, though I don’t see them anymore. All Dressed chips are far superior to The Works, at any rate.

  24. Martin Says:

    I’m from Montreal, and that’s certainly how I’ve heard it called all my life. For me, “all dressed” pizza has tomato sauce, pepperoni, onions, green peppers, mushrooms, and cheese.

  25. richard Says:

    being a montrealer, there are 3 things that can be properly described as “all dressed”. Pizza,chips and hot-dogs. I’ve tried ordering like that in other parts of Canada and the US and always get the look of confusion. it’s definitely a local thing..

  26. Paulette Says:

    yup, good old All dressed! I am a Canadian that moved to the USA 12 years ago and the first time I called somewhere to order pizza I asked for the All dressed and they said…’ok all dressed with what?..’. This went on for about 30 seconds and then I was like green peppers, pepperoni, mushrooms, cheese. My recall is that there are no onions on a true All dressed. But maybe that’s a Montreal thing because I lived there before moving to the U.S.

  27. Erik Says:

    Just want to add my 2 cents. All Dressed Ruffled are a flavor I sorely miss my years in Toronto. I have friends bring them back to me here in California when any of them go to Canada. “The Works” Ruffles have the flavors of a fully loaded baked potato: cheese, sour cream, bacon, etc. Not at all like the barbeque/salt & vinegar punch of all-dressed. I miss them! I’ve even signed a petition to bring them to the US. You should too. http://www.petitiononline.com/ruff411d/petition.html

  28. cassie Says:

    im from labrador and all dressed is pretty common around here. but it has many more toppings than the three or so mentioned. usually pepperoni, green/red peppers, onions, sausage, ground beef, ham, bacon, and cheese. personally i usually add pineapple as well, and you would never guess but it truly is the best pizza combo ever!

  29. Mel Says:

    What your calling an alldressed pizza is a combination pizza not all dressed. An all dressed pizza has almost everything it has olives onions pepperoni peppers mushrooms .

  30. Randy Says:

    I’m from Canada, but I now live in Thailand. I am trying to introduce the all dressed pizza here. It takes some convincing to get them to try it.
    Its much better than their pizza’s here. They use mayonnaise instead of cheese… yep it’s gross.
    Thankfully there are pizza hut and pizza company here that do use real cheese.

  31. Chris Says:

    The area of western Quebec / eastern Ontario where I grew up has had all-dressed pizza for at least the 35 years I’ve lived in this region. Which in that area is: pepperoni, green pepper, mushroom, and cheese. This is pretty standard across many communities, and it’s what’s printed on the menus: “all-dressed pizza”.

    All-dressed hot dogs are also standard, which is mustard, relish, onion, and coleslaw/sauerkraut. This is pretty standard for most chip stands / restaurants (eg. Montreal’s quintessential Lafleur Restaurants).

    You can basically order anything all-dressed. I regularly order shish taouks (Montreal-style chicken shawarma) all-dressed, where I’m given all the standard toppings.

  32. Shelley Says:

    I’m a Montrealer, lived in Calgary and now in Brandon, MB…….I’m given looks when I mention getting an All Dressed pizza (kinda like asking for sauce with my fries!!). I’ve come to learn it’s called Deluxe here.
    To me, the term Deluxe sounds grand, as if to be above and behind All Dressed, like double the toppings.

    Long live the Dep and Pharmaprix too!!

  33. Jodie Says:

    I live in the Eastern Townships in Quebec, and whenever I’ve seen all-dressed pizza it always means pepperoni, green peppers, mushrooms, and cheese.

    Some people have said that all-dressed is called deluxe where they live, but we also have deluxe pizza and it’s usually the same as all-dressed but with onions and bacon as well.

  34. Domenic Says:

    I live in Montreal, Quebec. All dressed = mushrooms, pepperoni, green peppers and mozarella cheese. I believe this definition of “all dressed” applies mostly to Quebec/ers.

  35. Paul Says:

    Oh yes, the “All Dressed Pizza” as a kid living in Montreal North during the 60 and 70’s it was much easier to just order the pizza all dressed instead of saying a little bit of this and a little bit of that topping, anyway, great taste.

  36. David Says:

    I think it’s a Montreal thing. I usually ordered a pizza, all-dressed with anchovies (pepperoni, green pepper, mushrooms and anchovies). And often from Pine Pizza.
    Asking for an all-dressed pizza in Toronto was regularly met with a blank look and a need to list the ingrediants required. Such a nuisance; no more short-hand.

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