Pepperoni Calzones

Calzones are right up there on my list of favorites with pizza. They are basically a pizza after all, just all of those good pizza toppings are stuffed in a crust. To tell the truth, I hardly ever make them at home. It does take a little more time than making a pizza, but they are not difficult to make. I like to keep it simple and use premade pizza dough. You can certainly make your own dough.

This calzone is bursting with pepperoni, cheese and a tasty pizza sauce all nestled in a golden brown crust. I also saved some of that pizza sauce for dipping.

Here’s what you need.

*Pizza dough: I used a premade kind.

*Pepperoni slices

*Pizza sauce; you can use homemade or premade; make sure to save some for dipping

*Shredded cheese: I used a blend of mozzarella, Colby Jack and Cheddar

*Olive oil for brushing the tops

*Grated parmesan cheese for on top of the calzone

Preheat oven to 425°.

Spray a baking sheet with no stick spray or use parchment paper; set aside.

Divide dough into equal portions and roll out into about 8 inch circles.

Spoon a small amount of pizza sauce near the center of the dough. Do not spread the sauce to the edges, because you will have to seal the dough later.

Sprinkle on the shredded cheese over the sauce.

Place the sliced pepperoni over the cheese.

Gently fold the dough over the top of the filling to create a semi-circle.

Crimp the edges using a fork to seal the dough.

Cut a few small slits into the top of the dough with a knife.

This will help some of the steam to escape with the calzones are cooking. Place on the baking sheet.

Brush the tops with a little of the olive oil.

Bake for 15 minutes or until the calzone are golden brown.

Take out of the oven and sprinkle some of the parmesan cheese on top.

Serve with some of the pizza sauce on the side.

Homemade Pepperoni Bacon Pizza with Store Bought Dough

Hubby and I eat our fair share of pizza. It’s a great go to meal and well……we love pizza. There are a few good frozen brands out their that is good to keep tucked away in the freezer, delivery is great as well, but it can get costly so making it at home is the best way to go. It’s really easy, especially when you can use premade dough. You can make your own dough, but I find that there are some good premade dough available and that makes it even easier and faster. Most local grocery stores now sell balls of dough as well as some pizza places will sell their dough. It’s mostly about finding the right one that you prefer.

Making your own pizza is like having a blank canvas. You can make it just the way you like, let your imagination and taste buds go wild. My hubby has even created a pizza with pepperoni and some leftover Chinese boneless spareribs. Did I think at first he had went a little too wild and crazy with the topping? Sure I did…but one bite and I was hooked. That being said, for this one I wanted to start out simple, but again add anything you like.

Here’s what you need:

*pizza dough

*olive oil for the pan and the pizza dough

*pizza sauce either from a jar or homemade; I used some already made

*favorite pizza toppings; I used pepperoni and 3 slices of bacon cooked and crumbled into pieces

*1 1/2 cups or more of Shredded cheese; I used a blend of cheddar and mozzarella

I find that letting the dough set out for 30 minutes before using it makes it easier to work with.

Preheat oven to 425°.

If using a pizza stone, preheat the stone then add some corneal before adding the dough. I find this keeps the dough from sticking.

If using a pizza pan or sheet pan, brush with olive oil.

Roll out the dough and using your finger tips, gently stretch out the dough to fit the pan. It’s ok if it isn’t perfectly round or square, I call that rustic and it’s what makes it unique. No matter how hard I try, mine has never looked perfect so yes, we shall call it rustic. Brush the dough with a little olive oil.

Prebake the dough for about 5 minutes.

After the dough is prebaked, spread on some of the pizza sauce.

Then sprinkle on the cheese.

Add on the toppings.

Bake for about 7 to 8 minutes or until crust is done and cheese is melted.

Cut into slices and serve.

Cast Iron Pepperoni Pizza

I love cooking in my cast iron pan. It makes a great sear on steaks and helps give fried chicken that wonderful crispy crust. I have seen a few blogs with pizza cooked in one, so I thought I’d try it and see if it was truly worth it. I was really pleased with the results. The crust did indeed get crispy and it was much easier than I thought it would be. I kept it simple and just did a pepperoni topping, but next time I might go wild and add more. So use your imagination and add whatever else you might like on yours.

Here’s what you need.

*1 TBS olive oil

*pizza dough; I used a store bought that was already prepared in the dough form.

*pizza sauce

*pepperoni

*shredded cheese; I used a pizza blend.

Preheat oven to 475°

Prepare the dough.

Heat a large cast iron pan on medium high heat for about 5 minutes.Take the pan off of the heat. Pour the olive oil into the pan, with a paper towel, spread the oil all over the bottom and sides of the pan.

Place the dough into the pan.

very carefully spread the dough out using your fingers until it touches all sides of the pan.

Remember the pan is hot. I was really prepared to burn my fingers at least once, but I can gladly say I did not.

Next, spread on the pizza sauce.

Add as little or as much as you want.

Now layer on the cheese.

Then add the pepperoni or any other toppings you might like.

Bake for about 12 minutes. Take the pan out and gently lift up the crust to see if it is to your liking.

Cut into slices and serve.

Meatball Marinara Quesadillas

I made this using some leftover Slow Cooker Meatballs with Marinara Sauce that I had. You can use just the meatballs if you prefer, but the marinara sauce really adds a lot of flavor to these quesadillas. They can get a little messy if some of the sauce oozes out, but good things are usually a little messy right? Most quesadillas are cooked on a griddle or in a pan, but I baked these bad boys in the oven. You can get more made by using a baking sheet, rather than only doing a few at a time in a pan.

Here’s what you need:

*8 inch four tortillas, or larger

*Slow Cooker Meatballs with Marinara Sauce; cut the meatballs in half or even smaller if your meatballs are pretty big. You want them to fit nicely in the tortillas. *Note: If you are using leftover meatballs and marinara sauce, warm them up slightly in the microwave. This helps them warm up faster in the quesadilla rather than if they were cold.

*shredded cheese; I used a Colby Monterrey Jack blend

*non stick spray

Preheat oven to 400°

Spray a large baking sheet with no stick spray. Lay a flour tortilla on the baking sheet. Place a few meatballs and some of the marinara sauce on the tortilla close to the center.

Sprinkle on the cheese over the meatballs.

Fold over the side to enclose the tortilla, pressing down gently to help hold the sides together. Repeat with the rest of the tortillas.

Bake for 5 minutes. Turn each tortilla over and continue to bake 3 to 4 minutes more or until the cheese is melted and the tortillas are a light golden brown.

Serve and enjoy!