Homemade Vegan Calzone Stuffed with Meatballs – If you are looking for quick weeknight dinner recipe, these vegan calzones are going to be a huge hit. They take very little effort and taste amazing
Have you seen calzones being made at Italian restaurants?
The whole process is so mesmerizing, isn’t it?
Years ago, when I worked at an Italian restaurant, my favorite thing was to watch the pizza chef make calzones. He was so talented and his fingers would just fly when he was making them.
Tips for making it
- Use store bought dough to make the calzone because it will save you a lot of time
- Make the marinara sauce from scratch if you have the time. Otherwise, use a store bought marinara that is vegan friendly
- You can add mushrooms and other veggies if you have them. Any in-season veggies will be perfect in this vegan calzone
- Do not thaw the meatballs. Put them in the baking tray directly from the freezer and then into the pre-heated oven they go.
- They are best when served right out of the oven.
Why is it called a calzone?
I have been reading on the history of calzones and there are so many theories out there. The most common explanation I have heard is that Calzone translates to “stockings” or “pant legs”.
I take it to mean that it pizza that you can eat while on the go or even put it in your handbag to take to work.
Ok, maybe not the second one. But, the idea behind it is that its folded over pizza so that it can be mobile.
Calzone is affectionately known as the folded pizza around my house!
Can I freeze calzones?
I have tried freezing calzones before and learned a few tips and tricks.
– If possible, freeze it before cooking it. Make the dough, roll it and place the meatballs in the middle. Seal it and wrap in aluminum foil and then put it into a ziploc before freezing them. Be sure to wrap them individually and use them up in a month
– You can also make them and freeze them in the same way. The only difference is that you should use it within a week or 2 weeks at the most
– When ready to use them, DO NOT thaw. Place them in a 400° oven and let them thaw out that way. I don’t like the idea of microwaving the cooked one, so, I highly recommend using the oven to cook them
What is the difference between a stromboli and a calzone
Calzone is a half-moon shaped and stromboli are long, log shaped meal. The calzone can be stuffed with almost anything (like meatballs) where as the stromboli has limitations (no meatballs).
Stromboli is rolled in which is about 2 layers and it kind of makes it hard to stuff some ingredients. It tastes just as delicious as calzones but harder to stuff.
I like them both, but, I am biased towards calzones.
Gardein’s Meatless Meatballs
My favorite way to cook them is in the oven. In there, they cook evenly and all through. They can be cooked in the microwave, but, I wasn’t fan of the texture after microwaving them.
After cooking them in a pan with peppers, zoodles and tomato sauce, they were ready to eat just like that. If you don’t feel like stuffing them in a calzone, just eat them right out of the pan like I did.
They can be perfect with pasta or even rice. For the pizza sauce, you can use my homemade pizza sauce recipe made from scratch, if you have time (takes about 30 minutes to make my pizza sauce recipe)
What’s your favorite way to stuff calzones?
How to make vegan calzones stuffed with meatballs
For the pizza dough
- 2 lb Pizza Dough (16oz each) See notes
- 1/2 cup All purpose flour For rolling the pizza dough
- 1/2 cup Almond Milk To brush on the calzone
For the stuffing
- 1 Tbsp Oil
- 1 Tbsp Garlic crushed
- 1/4 Red Onion Julienned
- 1/2 Red Bell Pepper Julienned
- 2 Zucchini medium sized and zoodled
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- 1/4 cup Pizza Sauce for cooking
- 1 packet Gardein Glassic Meatless Meatballs
- Pizza Sauce for dipping
- Cooking Spray
- Preheat oven to 450
- Place the meatballs on a oiled baking tray and put it in the oven
- Bake for 15 minutes or until they are browned
- Cut the dough into 4 pieces and cover with a damp cloth. Set aside
- Heat a stainless steel pan on medium heat for 30 seconds
- Add the oil and garlic
- Add the onions and bell peppers
- Cook until they are soft (about 4-5 minutes)
- Add the zucchini zoodles and cook for about 3 minutes
- Add the pizza sauce
- Mix well and set aside
- Set the oven heater to 400°
- Roll the dough in a long shape (like a flatbread)
- Place the meatballs stuffings on one side, keeping the edges clean (about 3 meatballs per dough)
- Fold over the bottom part of the dough
- Using a fork, seal the top and bottom of the calzone
- Place the calzone on an oiled baking tray
- Generously brush the top of the calzone with almond milk
- Repeat the process for the remaining 3 dough pieces
- Place the tray in the oven and bake for about 30-35 minutes until the top is browned
- Remove from the oven and let it cool to touch before serving
- Serve with pizza sauce