Who doesn’t love good finger food? A pepperoni calzone is easy to make using frozen bread dough, and is sure to become a family favorite!
Friday nights are meant for pizza! And what better way to elevate your pizza night than with this mini calzones recipe!
This pizzeria-style calzone recipe is super easy to make, thanks to Bridgford’s Ready-Dough. It makes the perfect holiday appetizers or a savory game night snack, and it’s a really cheap picnic food, too!
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Why We Love Pepperoni Calzones
Calzones are like pizzas, but folded in half and sealed, creating a pocket of deliciousness.
Unlike pizza, where the toppings go over the sauce, calzones have the sauce and ingredients tucked inside of the dough before baking.
This makes them extra special because they are like little packages of yum. Plus, with Bridgford Ready-Dough® you can make them in no time! Just thaw, stuff, and bake!
Why We Like Using Bridgford Dough
As you know, we love using store-bought Bridgford Frozen Ready-Dough® and Parkerhouse Style Rolls. After all, we have over a dozen frozen dough recipes here at The Feathered Nester.
We love how they do all the prep with quality non-GMO ingredients, so we don’t have to. That’s why we have them in our freezers year-round.
You can find Bridgford’s frozen dough locally in the grocery store’s freezer section (see where to buy).
Love recipes using frozen dough?
Make some parker house rolls from frozen dough for a holiday meal, or a fire grilled pizza for a game day meal.
Oh, speaking of game day, the crowd goes crazy for homemade pretzel balls and monkey bread from frozen.
- Frozen Bread Dough – You’ll need to thaw it before you begin making the pepperoni calzones. See our notes on how to do this, below.
- Pepperoni slices – We prefer the Bridgford brand.
- String cheese or shredded mozzarella cheese
How to Defrost Dough For Our Calzone Recipe
Our preferred method is to defrost frozen dough overnight in the fridge. This method is almost effortless, and the dough will be ready to use the next morning.
If you’re in a hurry, see how to thaw frozen bread dough quickly.
How to Make Mini Calzones
Preheat the oven to 425ºF. Grease your baking sheet with cooking spray or line it with parchment paper.
Cut the dough. Dust a cutting board with flour. Cut Bridgford Ready-Dough® into 8 equal parts, rolling each into a small ball.
Let the dough sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes until it is at room temperature. This makes the dough easier to roll out.
Mix the egg with 1 tablespoon of water in a small bowl to make the egg wash, and whisk with the fork until well combined.
Prepare the filling. Cut string cheese sticks or mozzarella slices into 3 equal pieces. And separate the pepperoni slices into groups of three slices.
Prepare the mini calzones. Roll out each dough ball into a circle about 5″ wide with a floured rolling pin.
Place 3 slices of pepperoni on one side of the dough circle. On top of the pepperoni, place 1 piece of mozzarella cheese and 1 tablespoon of marinara sauce, leaving a 1/2″ clear edge. Brush the edge with the egg wash.
Fold the dough in half over the pepperoni, cheese, and sauce. Make sure that the edges line up.
Use your fingers to press down on the seam, then crimp the edge with a fork. Use the fork to poke three holes on the top to vent them while baking.
Place the pepperoni calzones on the prepared baking sheet. Make sure to leave enough space in between so they don’t touch. Brush the tops of the pizza dough rolls with egg wash.
Bake the dough at 425º F for 15 minutes, or until it is cooked through and golden brown on top.
- For a cheesier calzone recipe, sprinkle a few pieces of mozzarella cheese on top before baking.
- Add your favorite pizza toppings: As long as it is pre-cooked, any protein can be baked inside of your mini calzone! Salami, Italian sausage, crumbled ground beef, sliced turkey or chicken, Canadian bacon or ham, etc.
- Make them spicy by adding a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes to the marinara sauce for an extra kick.
- Make a sweet treat! – Stuff it with Nutella and sliced bananas, pie filling, or even apple cobbler filling.
What to Serve With a Pepperoni Calzone
A simple green salad is a great side with this Italian meal. The crust is perfect for dipping into a warm marinara, like our San Marzano sauce.
You can even make easy garlic butter to brush the tops of each one while they are still hot out of the oven. Or better yet, make some sourdough garlic bread for garlic toast!
Storing and Reheating
Store any leftovers in a sealed container and put them in the fridge for 3 days.
To reheat, wrap pizza rolls with foil, then pop them in a preheated oven at 350° F for 10-15 minutes or until warmed through. Or an air fryer (uncovered) at 325° F for 8-9 minutes.
Calzones can be reheated in the microwave for about 1 minute on high heat. This will ensure that the dough stays crisp and doesn’t get soggy.
Calzone Recipe FAQ
You can avoid sogginess by wrapping the edges tightly and poke holes in the top of the dough before baking. This will allow steam to escape during baking so your pizza roll is not too moist inside.
Mini pepperoni calzones can be enjoyed either way – hot or cold. But it’s always best to eat them warm for a gooey, cheesy experience.
Yes, the marinara sauce is often added to the inside for a delicious, savory flavor. It also helps keep the ingredients together and can add moisture to ensure that your meal doesn’t come out dry.
Mini Pepperoni Calzones
- rolling pin
- basting brush - for egg wash
- fork - for crimping the dough edges
- 1 pound Bridgford Ready Dough thawed (1 pound = 1 loaf)
- 24 slices pepperoni we use Bridgford brand
- 3 ounces string cheese (3 sticks, or 3 ounces mozzarella)
- ¼ cup marinara sauce
- 1 egg
- flour for dusting the board
- Preheat oven to 425º F.
- Dust a cutting board with flour. Cut thawed Bridgford Ready Dough into 8 equal parts, rolling each into a small ball. Let dough sit at room temperature for 30 minutes, until it reaches room temperature. This makes the dough easier to roll out.
- While the dough is warming, cut string cheese sticks or mozzarella into 3 equal pieces. Separate the pepperoni slices into groups of three slices. Add the egg to a small bowl with 1 tablespoon of water and whisk with a fork until well combined.
- Using a floured rolling pin, roll out each dough ball until you have a circle about 5" wide.
- On one side of the dough circle, place 3 slices of pepperoni staggered in a row with one piece of mozzarella, and a tablespoon of marinara sauce, leaving a 1/2-inch clean edge. Brush the edge of the calzone with the egg wash.
- Fold the dough in half over the pepperoni, cheese, and sauce until the edges align. Press the seam down with your fingers, then crimp the edges all around that half with a fork.
- Place the mini calzones on a parchment paper lined (or greased) baking sheet, about 2 inches apart. Brush the tops with egg wash.
- Bake at 425º F for 15 minutes, or until dough is cooked and golden brown on top.
- Serve with warm marinara sauce for dipping.