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How to Plot a Pie Chart in LaTeX

  • In this tutorial, we will learn how to draw Pie charts in LaTeX using TikZ package. Pie charts are data visualization tools that shows how a whole is divided into different categories. They are drawn as slices which complete a whole circle, or pie, when they are together.

Drawing a Pie Chart in LaTeX

A pie chart might represent used shots per player in a basketball game, or how a budget had been spent on different categories in a period of time. Although alone, they don't give much detail about their subject, but they are great for summarizing information, emphasizing the portions of categories and adding detail to other data visualization tools. 

Illustrative Example

Before starting to create our environment, first, we need to have data to visualize. Let's say that we want to visualize NBA teams which have won the championship trophy. We can gather the data for total championships won by each team and their percentage of winning from a wikipedia article on this topic. Let's say we want to emphasize the teams who won at least five cups, and sum other teams in the Other Teams category. As of 2021, our data will look like this:

Team

Win

Percentage

Los Angeles Lakers

17

22.97%

Boston Celtics

17

22.97

Golden State Warriors

6

8.11%

Chicago Bulls

6

8.11%

San Antonio Spurs

5

6.76%

Other Teams

23

31.07

Total

74

100%

PGF-PIE package

Now that we gathered our data, we can create our drawing environment. We only need pgf-pie package, which is built on top of PGF and TikZ. Then we can create a tikzpicture environment and begin drawing.

 \documentclass[border=0.2cm]{standalone}

% Pie chart drawing library 
\usepackage{pgf-pie}  

\begin{document}

\begin{tikzpicture}
	% We will draw the pie chart here
\end{tikzpicture}

\end{document}

\pie command

Creating a pie chart is really easy with pgf-pie, the most important thing to have is the percentage values for our categories. If we know each percentage, we can easily create our pie chart with one simple command, \pie. We need to feed the command with each of our percentage and label information in following manner:

\begin{tikzpicture}

\pie{22.97/Los Angeles Lakers,
	22.97/Boston Celtics,
	8.11/Golden State Warriors,
	8.11/Chicago Bulls,
	6.76/San Antonio Spurs,
	31.07/Other Teams}

\end{tikzpicture}
PIE chart in LaTeX Tikz Pgf pie

Pie chart drawn in LaTeX using pgf-pie package 

It's that simple to create a solid pie chart! 

  • It's important to notice that our values has the total of nearly 100. pgf-pie package assumes that we are using percentages, and drawing the chart slice by slice. If the total of our percentages had gone over 100, the slices would overlap and our visualization would not be correct. 

Customize Pie chart appearance in LaTeX 

Now that we easily created our first pie chart example, let's try different options provided by pgf-pie package.

Radius of Pie chart

By default, the pie chart radius is equal to 3. To change the size of our chart, we add radius=<value> to the \pie command. Anything more than 3 will increase the size, and values below 3 will make our chart smaller. Here is an example:

\begin{tikzpicture}

\pie{25/L1, 30/L2, 45/L3}
\pie[pos={7,0},radius=2]{25/L1, 30/L2, 45/L3}

\end{tikzpicture}
radius PIE chart in LaTeX Tikz Pgf pie

Pie chart in LaTeX with different radii

Multiple Pie charts

In the previous example, we have used the \pie command twice to generate two pie charts with different radii. To achieve that we have to change the position of the second pie chart. This can be done using the option pos={x,y}. The latter specifies the x and y coordinates of the second chart. By default, the pie chart is positioned at (0,0).

Rotate a Pie chart

We can also rotate our slices' positions using rotate option. Its default value is 0, and it'll rotate our chart counterclockwise with given angle value. Here is an example of pie charts with different rotations.

\begin{tikzpicture}

% Pie chart 1
\pie{10/A, 20/B, 30/C, 40/D}

% Pie chart 2
\pie[
	pos = {7.5,0},
	rotate = 90
]{10/A, 20/B, 30/C, 40/D}

\end{tikzpicture}
rotate slices PIE chart in LaTeX Tikz Pgf pie

Rotate a pie chart in LaTeX using rotate option

Change the Pie chart color

We also have the opportunity to change the color of our pie chart or the individual slices by using color option.

If we want to make the whole chart the same color, it's enough to give one parameter to the option. To have different colors with each slice, we need to feed the parameter with as many colors as there are slices. Following code shows our different options.

\begin{tikzpicture}

% Pie chart 1
\pie[
	color = {
		yellow!90!black,
		green!60!black,
		blue!60, red!70,
		gray!70,
		teal!20}
]{22.97/Los Angeles Lakers,
	22.97/Boston Celtics,
	8.11/Golden State Warriors,
	8.11/Chicago Bulls,
	6.76/San Antonio Spurs,
	31.07/Other Teams
}

% Pie chart 2
\pie[
	pos = {10,0},
	color = magenta!40
]{10/A, 20/B, 30/C, 40/D}

\end{tikzpicture}

Compiling the above LaTeX code yields:

color slices PIE chart in LaTeX Tikz Pgf pie

Pie chart slice explode

Now we have colors to help our story, but if we want to make one slice pop, we can use explode option. The option divides our slices by a given parameter. As in color option, we can explode all our slices at the same rate or have different gaps between each slice. Let's see our options:

\begin{tikzpicture}

% Pie chart 1
\pie[
	color = {
		yellow!90!black,
		green!60!black,
		blue!60,
		red!70,
		gray!70,
		teal!20
	}, 
	explode = 0.1
]{22.97/Los Angeles Lakers,
	22.97/Boston Celtics,
	8.11/Golden State Warriors,
	8.11/Chicago Bulls,
	6.76/San Antonio Spurs,
	31.07/Other Teams
}

% Pie chart 2
\pie[
	pos = {10,0},
	color = magenta!40,
	explode = {0.4, 0, 0, 0}
]{10/A, 20/B, 30/C, 40/D}

\end{tikzpicture}
Explode slices PIE chart in LaTeX Tikz Pgf pie

Explode slices in Pie charts LaTeX

Hide numbers in Pie charts

Now let's focus on formatting our text elements. In some charts we may want to hide our numbers to create a more clean-looking chart. We can achieve this easily using hide number option.

\begin{tikzpicture}

% Pie chart
\pie[
	color = {
		yellow!90!black,
		green!60!black,
		blue!60, 
		red!70,
		gray!70, 
		teal!20},
	hide number
]
{22.97/Los Angeles Lakers,
	22.97/Boston Celtics,
	8.11/Golden State Warriors,
	8.11/Chicago Bulls,
	6.76/San Antonio Spurs,
	31.07/Other Teams
}

\end{tikzpicture}
Hide numbers PIE chart in LaTeX Tikz Pgf pie

Hide numbers in LaTeX Pie charts

Put text labels inside Pie chart

We can also format our label texts using pgf-pie options. One thing we can do is to put our labels in the slices using only text = inside command, we can use this command to create a small, compact chart. To make the text fit, we can abbreviate the team names.

\begin{tikzpicture}

\pie[
	text = inside
]{22.97/LAL,
	22.97/BC,
	8.11/GSW,
	8.11/CB,
	6.76/SAS,
	31.07/Other
}

\end{tikzpicture}
Text inside PIE chart in LaTeX Tikz Pgf pie

Text inside LaTeX pie chart

Add a Legend to a Pie chart

To add a legend to our pie chart, we use the option text = legend with the \pie command. Here is an example:

\begin{tikzpicture}

\pie[
	color = {
		yellow!90!black, 
		green!60!black, 
		blue!60, 
		red!70,
		gray!70,
		teal!20},
	text = legend
]
{22.97/LAL,
	22.97/BC,
	8.11/GSW,
	8.11/CB,
	6.76/SAS,
	31.07/Other}

\end{tikzpicture}
Add legend to PIE chart in LaTeX Tikz Pgf pie

Add legend to a Pie chart in LaTeX

Plot Pie charts without transforming data to percentages

As we mentioned earlier, pgf-pie assumes that the total of our values is 100. However, in some cases, we might need to show the number of occurrences instead of percentages. In our example, we have 74 NBA championship trophy to portion out. We can show them using sum command. If we use it with auto parameter, it will automatically sum all our values and will portion each slice according to its percentage. Here is an illustrative example:

\begin{tikzpicture}

\pie[
	color = {
		yellow!90!black,
		green!60!black,
		blue!60,
		red!70, 
		gray!70,
		teal!20}, 
	sum = auto
]{17/LAL,
	17/BC,
	6/GSW,
	6/CB,
	5/SAS,
	23/Other
}

\end{tikzpicture}
Without percentage PIE chart in LaTeX Tikz Pgf pie

Another way to use the sum command is to give it a total number manually and let it create slices proportioned to that sum number. We can draw only one or two slices using this option. In following code snippet, we created two charts representing only the two teams with the most wins. The first chart automatically sums up the occurrences and creates a full pie, but the second one creates slices with proportion to given parameter, which is 74.

\begin{tikzpicture}

% Pie chart 1
\pie[
	color = {
		yellow!90!black,
		green!60!black
	}, 
	sum = auto
]{17/LAL, 17/BC}

% Pie chart 2
\pie[
	pos={8,0},
	color = {
		yellow!90!black,
		green!60!black
	},
	sum = 74
]{17/LAL, 17/BC}

\end{tikzpicture}
Plot two slices of PIE chart in LaTeX Tikz Pgf pie
  • This concludes the Pie chart latex tutorial and for more details you can check the package documentationIf you have any questions or remarks, leave me a comment below or reach me via e-mail at admin@latexdraw.com, I will be happy to hear from you!

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