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Pita vs. Lavash — What's the Difference?

By Tayyaba Rehman — Updated on November 2, 2023
Pita is a round, pocketed bread from Mediterranean cuisine, while Lavash is a thin, soft flatbread from Middle Eastern and Caucasian cuisines.
Pita vs. Lavash — What's the Difference?

Difference Between Pita and Lavash

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Key Differences

Pita bread, originating from the Mediterranean and Middle Eastern regions, is known for its pocket. It's created by steam puffing up the dough when it is baked, causing the layers to separate and form a pocket. This bread is commonly used to hold ingredients, like a sandwich.
Lavash, by contrast, is a traditional staple of Armenia and the Middle East, a soft, thin, and large bread that is typically rolled rather than stuffed. Unlike pita, lavash does not have a pocket and is more flexible, making it ideal for wraps or for tearing and dipping into sauces or spreads.
Both pita and lavash are made from simple ingredients such as flour, water, yeast, and salt, but the baking technique and resulting textures differ. Pita often puffs up in the oven before settling into a round shape with a hollow interior, whereas lavash remains flat and soft.
Pita can be served with dips like hummus or baba ganoush and is often cut into wedges. Lavash, due to its larger surface area and flexibility, is used as a wrap for kebabs or as a base for toppings, similar to a flatbread pizza.
The cultural significance of both pita and lavash is strong in their respective cuisines, often accompanying meals or being part of traditional culinary practices. Pita is also commonly found in Western grocery stores, while lavash might be located in specialty or international markets.
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Comparison Chart

Shape

Round with a pocket
Large, rectangular, and flat

Texture

Soft with a slight chew
Soft and flexible

Preparation

Baked quickly at high temperatures
Baked on a hot surface or oven

Common Uses

Sandwiches, dipping
Wraps, flatbread dishes

Origin

Mediterranean/Middle Eastern
Armenian/Middle Eastern

Compare with Definitions

Pita

Pitas are round and typically have a hollow center.
The pita puffed up in the oven, forming a perfect pocket.

Lavash

Lavash is ideal for making wraps due to its large, flexible sheets.
I made a vegetarian lavash wrap with lots of greens and tahini.

Pita

Pita is a leavened pocket bread from Middle Eastern cuisine.
I filled my pita with grilled chicken and vegetables for lunch.

Lavash

Lavash is a thin, soft flatbread from Armenian and Middle Eastern cuisines.
He rolled the seasoned meat in lavash to make a wrap.

Pita

Pita bread is often used for sandwiches and dipping.
She scooped the hummus up with a piece of pita.

Lavash

Lavash bread is traditionally baked against the hot walls of a tandoor oven.
The lavash came out of the tandoor oven piping hot.

Pita

Pita can be made with whole wheat or white flour.
I prefer whole wheat pita for extra fiber.

Lavash

Lavash is often used as a plate for kebabs and other meats.
They placed the grilled skewers directly on the lavash.

Pita

Pita ( or US: ) or pitta (British English), is a family of yeast-leavened round flatbreads baked from wheat flour, common in the Mediterranean, Middle East, and neighboring areas. It includes the widely known version with an interior pocket, also known as Arabic bread (Arabic: khubz ʿarabī), Syrian bread and other names, as well as pocketless versions such as the Greek pita, used to wrap souvlaki.

Lavash

Lavash can be used fresh or dried into crackers.
She served a platter with cheese and pieces of crisp lavash.

Pita

A round flat bread of Middle Eastern origin that can be opened to form a pocket for filling. Also called pocket bread.

Lavash

Lavash is a thin flatbread usually leavened, traditionally baked in a tandoor (tonir) or on a sajj, and common to the cuisines of South Caucasus, Western Asia, and the areas surrounding the Caspian Sea. Lavash is one of the most widespread types of bread in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Iran and Turkey.

Pita

Any of several agaves that yield strong leaf fibers. Also called istle.

Lavash

A thin unleavened flatbread of Armenian origin.

Pita

The fiber of any of these plants, used in making cordage and paper.

Lavash

A soft, thin flatbread made with flour, water, yeast, and salt, baked in a tandoor. Toasted sesame seeds and/or poppy seeds are sometimes sprinkled on it before baking. Traditionally made in Armenia and other countries of the Caucasus and the Middle East.

Pita

A flat bread pouch used for making sandwiches such as gyros or falafels.

Pita

A fiber obtained from the Agave americana and related species, used for making cordage and paper.

Pita

The plant which yields the fiber.

Pita

A fiber obtained from the Agave Americana and other related species, - used for making cordage and paper. Called also pita fiber, and pita thread.

Pita

Usually small round bread that can open into a pocket for filling

Pita

Pita is versatile, suitable for toasting or stuffing.
For breakfast, I toasted a pita and topped it with avocado.

Common Curiosities

Can pita and lavash be used interchangeably?

While they can sometimes be used similarly, they have different textures and purposes.

What is a typical use for pita?

Pita is commonly used for sandwiches or served with dips.

Is lavash bread always rectangular?

Typically, yes, lavash is large and rectangular.

Are pita and lavash made with the same ingredients?

Yes, both are typically made with flour, water, yeast, and salt.

What is pita bread?

Pita is a round, pocketed bread from Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisines.

What is a typical use for lavash?

Lavash is often used for wraps or served with kebabs.

Are pita and lavash suitable for vegetarians and vegans?

Generally, yes, as they are made from plant-based ingredients.

Can lavash be eaten as a snack?

Yes, especially when dried into crackers.

What is lavash bread?

Lavash is a thin, soft flatbread common in Armenian and Middle Eastern cuisines.

Is pita bread always round?

Traditionally, yes, pita is round.

Do pita and lavash have the same origin?

They share Middle Eastern roots but come from different specific cultures.

Can both pita and lavash be used for dipping?

Yes, both can be used for dipping but in different forms.

How should I store pita and lavash?

Keep them in a cool, dry place; they can also be refrigerated or frozen for longer storage.

Is pita bread available in different sizes?

Yes, pita can come in various sizes.

Can I make pita or lavash at home?

Yes, both can be made at home with basic baking ingredients and techniques.

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Author Spotlight

Written by
Tayyaba Rehman
Tayyaba Rehman is a distinguished writer, currently serving as a primary contributor to askdifference.com. As a researcher in semantics and etymology, Tayyaba's passion for the complexity of languages and their distinctions has found a perfect home on the platform. Tayyaba delves into the intricacies of language, distinguishing between commonly confused words and phrases, thereby providing clarity for readers worldwide.

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