What is a Pizza Cutter?

S. Gonzales

A pizza cutter is a type of kitchen utensil used to cut pizza. The two most common types of pizza cutters are the pizza wheel and the mezzaluna. Many people opt to use pizza cutters instead of knives to cut pizza because pizza cutters can be easily and quickly applied to produce clean-edged slices.

Pizza cutters turn whole pizzas into slices.
Pizza cutters turn whole pizzas into slices.

Consumers tend to prefer cutting pizza with pizza cutters for several reasons. The main benefit of using a pizza cutter to slice pizza is that it allows for a clean, streamlined cut. Using a standard knife to cut pizza often produces jagged edges on the pizza slices. The application of a standard knife also can result in the accidental scraping off of the pizza's toppings.

Restaurants often let customers slice their own pizzas at the table.
Restaurants often let customers slice their own pizzas at the table.

Pizza cutters are often associated with a very specific image. This image is that of the pizza wheel, which has, as the name implies, a sharp-edged wheel located at the end of a handle. The wheel itself is commonly made out of stainless steel, and the handle can be made out of plastic, metal or wood. Using a pizza wheel allows pizza makers to cleanly cut pizza. The wheel is simply pressed down onto the pizza in a vertical fashion and rolled across the pizza to cut it into slices.

There is another common type of pizza cutter, however. This type of pizza cutter, often called a mezzaluna, is a curved blade with handles at the end. When it is used correctly, a pizza maker will rock it back and forth on top of the pizza. These pizza cutters can be preferred by pizza shop owners who want employees to be able to cut their pizzas quickly and efficiently.

A popular way to slice a round pizza with a pizza cutter involves slicing through the middle of the pizza at varying degrees. Slicing this way can result in triangle-shaped pizza slices of equal sizes. A pizza maker can also make the slices as thin as he or she prefers. Some pizza styles can have specific slicing techniques employed. New York-style pizza, for example, typically features wide slices.

Pizza cutters can come in different sizes. Choosing a pizza cutter is often up to preference, but it can be influenced by the size of pizzas that one anticipates to make, too. A pizza cutter can also be purchased for other uses. For instance, a mezzaluna can double as a means to chop vegetables and herbs, and a pizza wheel can be bought for use in crafts.

Pizza cutters come in several sizes.
Pizza cutters come in several sizes.

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Discussion Comments


@Pippinwhite -- Is there a knife shop in your area? If there is, call and see if they offer a knife sharpening service. Many knife stores do, and that's where I get all my kitchen knives sharpened -- including my pizza wheel. My knives are sharpened two or three times a year, and my pizza wheel once a year.

If you can get a pro to do it, that's the best way. You'll be pleased with the results.


I have a pizza wheel pizza cutter and I'm always at war with it. I wish there were some way to sharpen the blade so it would cut through a crust easily. As it is, when we have pizza, that cutter and I are old enemies. I've started getting my husband to do it because he has more brute force in his arms and hands than I do.

I've seen all these good reviews for various pizza wheels, but it's the same old story -- how do you sharpen the blade?

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