I decided to venture into territory that is completely new to me - working with pizza dough. My husband was really wanting a sausage and peppers calzone but without all the grease, fat and heaviness. The calzone he usually orders at one of our local italian restaurants is very fattening. I would assume, eating the entire calzone, would clock in at about 1,500-2,000 calories. It is way too rich for just being a meal! With a bit of inspiration and eagerness to tackle a new project - I made these awesome figure-friendly calzones! I was so pleased with how great these came out. The dough wasn't soft or soggy - just crisp and delicious! I purchased a pound of pizza dough from the grocery - which saved me a lot of time. All I really had to do was make the filling and assemble the calzones. It took a bit of time trying to figure out how to assemble these, but once I got the first one down, the others came together very quickly. I can't wait to try it different ingredients and flavors.
I used my go-to jarred pasta sauce - Newman's Own Organic Tomato and Basil as my sauce. You could use whatever sauce you enjoy - but I highly recommend this one. I made my calzone without cheese, and it was perfect. So it can be made dairy-free if you choose. My husband enjoys cheese - so his was nice and cheesy. The nutritional info is calculated with cheese. I only had sharp cheddar cheese on hand, so that's what I used. It worked very well with the filling. I'm sure any kind of good melting cheese will work.
Sausage, Peppers and Onions Calzone
Cook Time: < 35 minutes
Prep Time: < 15 minutes
- olive oil spray
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 2 medium onions, sliced
- 2 medium bell peppers, sliced
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 16oz lean turkey sausage, thinly sliced
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1lb fresh pizza dough
- 3 tbsp flour (for working with the dough)
- 2/3 cup 2% cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1 1/3 cup of pasta or marinara sauce, warmed
Allow the dough to come to room temp while you are preparing the filling.
Preheat the oven to 400F and prep a large cookie sheet with a little olive oil spray. Set aside.
Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and peppers. Saute for about 10 minutes, stirring often.
Add the garlic and cook for 3 minutes. Add the sausage, salt, pepper, and dried basil - cook for another 5-10 minutes (until the turkey sausage is cooked throughout). Once it is cooked, set aside and begin working on the dough.
On a floured surface, place the dough and cut into 4 pieces. Beginning working on the first piece. Punch the dough down, to release the gases inside and gradually begin stretching it out (I just gradually pulled at each side evenly, until I got my desired thickness). Make sure your hands have some flour on them to prevent sticking.
Once you have man-handled the dough, place on the cookie sheet and sprinkle 1/4 of the cheese into the middle. Then top with 1/4 of the sausage mixture. Make sure to spread it out evenly.
Grab one corner and fold to the other side and do this to all sides until the calzone is completely wrapped. Flip the calzone so that the edges are tucked underneath.
Repeat the steps needed to make the other calzones. Once they are all ready, lightly brush the tops with a little egg and transfer the sheet to the oven.
Allow the calzones to bake for about 20 minutes, or until the tops are golden and the dough is cooked through.
Top the calzones with 1/3 cup of the pasta sauce and serve hot.
Nutritional Info per Calzone and 1/3 cup of the sauce:
Calories: 565 ; Fat: 18g ; Carbohydrate: 70g ; Fiber: 5g ; Sugar: 10g ; Protein: 32.5g
Nutritional Info per Calzone (no sauce):
Calories: 500 ; Fat: 15.5g ; Carbohydrate: 60.5g; Fiber: 5g ; Sugar: 2g ; Protein: 31.5