Pizzas for Every Palate

Appears in the March 2023 issue.

By Peter Gianopulos

Pizza from Pizza Twist

Prasad Mutyala wants to make one thing extremely clear: He completely understands the appeal of a traditional Italian pizza: a cheesy pie slathered with red sauce and time-honored toppings.

Which is why visitors to Pizza Twist (936 S. Rte. 59, Naperville), the first Illinois location of a national chain, can still enjoy pizza the old-fashioned way: thin-crust or hand-tossed pizzas moisturized by marinara and topped with whatever toppings float their vaporetto.

That being said, Mutyala asks everyone to consider the benefits of “twisting” tradition just a bit and grafting sauces and recipes from other cultures onto pizza dough. “Sometimes, people are a little cautious about trying these pizza twists,” he says, “but when they take a chance, they have this ‘wow’ moment when they realize how many flavors work well on pizza.”

Consider, for example, a pie smeared with a tikka masala sauce, then topped with bits of chicken breast, garlic, red onions, and fresh chopped cilantro. Or a spicy lamb kabob pizza brushed with a tandoori sauce. The list of untraditional options at Pizza Twist seems to go on forever, including Indian-style butter chicken pizzas, halal pies, or a Chinese variation made with Manchurian chicken. (There is also a slew of vegan and gluten-free offerings.)

“When it comes to fusion pizzas, you have to keep an open mind,” Mutyala says, “but the feedback from our guests so far has been amazing. A lot of people approach with question marks over their heads but leave with broad smiles on their faces.”

Mutyala’s Pizza Twist in Naperville isn’t only the first of its kind in Illinois—it may be the first to offer such a diverse bounty of sides, which range from paneer pakora and samosas to vegan chicken wings and masala-dusted fries.


Photo courtesy of Pizza Twist