What We Like about California Pizza Kitchen Catering
- Meredith Bethune
- 3 Min Read
It may be hard to believe now, but there was once a time when barbecue chicken pizza wasn’t served at every pizzeria across the country. This California Pizza Kitchen review will reveal how the innovative chain started it all—and what you should order when you need to feed an office full of hungry workers.
Back in 1985, CPK founders Rick Rosenfield and Larry Flax, two former federal prosecutors, added the cult favorite dish to their Beverly Hills menu. Customers immediately fell in love with California Pizza Kitchen pizzas, which are dotted with non-traditional toppings, like smoked gouda, red onions, cilantro, and barbecue sauce. As a result, California-style pizza is as beloved today as New York- and Detroit-style pies, according toThrillist. Today, the California Pizza Kitchen chain has a catering arm and more than 250 locations in more than 30 states and 11 countries. Each restaurant remains true to its California origins, serving food made with the freshest ingredients and cultivating a fun, easy-going vibe.
The chain’s famous original barbecue chicken pizza put California Pizza Kitchen catering on the map. Other flavorful combinations followed, like the popular Thai chicken pizza, topped with crisp bean sprouts, julienned carrots, slivered scallions, generous chunks of grilled chicken breast, and a drizzle of luscious peanut sauce. Try both, along with three other pies of your choice, when you order the small pizza combo catering package.
California Pizza Kitchen catering isn’t all about pizza, though. Their catering packages also come with one or two ever-so-fresh salads, like the quinoa and arugula salad tossed with fresh asparagus, sweet sun-dried tomatoes, red onions, toasted pine nuts, creamy feta, and homemade champagne vinaigrette. There’s also the original barbecue chicken chopped salad, a healthier reinterpretation of their famous pizza, which comes with lettuce, black beans, sweet corn, crunchy, jicama, Monterey Jack cheese, tomatoes, crispy corn tortilla strips, and zesty barbecue sauce. Generous helpings of chopped scallions, basil, and cilantro, along with house-made herb ranch dressing, give the salad an aromatic twist. The addition of a sweets platter with fudgey brownies, as well as white chocolate macadamia nut, spicy snickerdoodle, rocky road, and chocolate chunk cookies, is guaranteed to keep your team happy during a long lunch meeting.
For a fun happy hour or cocktail event, you can’t beat appetizers like their gooey spinach artichoke dip, served with housemade blue and white corn tortilla chips, for pleasing a crowd. The avocado club egg rolls burst with fresh avocado, smokey chicken, tomatoes, and bacon, while the refreshing lettuce wraps come with chicken or shrimp, savory shiitake mushrooms, crunchy water chestnuts, and scallions all tossed in a spicy ginger soy sauce.
Even though California Pizza Kitchen catering has built its reputation on mainstay pizzas, they’re continually adding novel menu items. This spring, they’re cooking up Sonoma grilled chicken flatbreads, which are piled high with grilled chicken, double cream brie, caramelized onions, fresh arugula, parmesan cheese, and marinated red grapes, all roasted in a hearth oven. There’s also the fan-favorite Mexican street corn, coated with smoked paprika, feta, and parmesan cheeses, and served with fresh cilantro, lime, and housemade ranchito sauce.
Other Tips for Ordering
Thanks to the sheer number of packages available, California Pizza Kitchen catering can be your go-to for accommodating large groups. Whether you opt for sandwiches, pizzas, or pasta, the small trio packages accommodate 10 people, while a large combo provides enough food for 20. Each comes with salad and a sweets platter, so you can order a varied lunch quickly and efficiently.
While all California Pizza Kitchen catering packages accommodate vegetarians, review the number of non-meat eaters in your party before placing your order. Several pizzas are designed with vegetarians in mind, including the fresh broccolini and eggplant-topped California veggie pie, as well as the wild mushroom pizza, with its meaty cremini, shiitake, and portobello mushrooms, and the hearty five-cheese and fresh tomato pizza.
Ready to place your pizza order?