Easy Dnner Recipe: Spinach and Sausage Calzones

October 18, 2014

Pre-made pizza dough is a life saver when you are in need of a quick and easy meal.  This time saving ingredient can be used in a variety of recipes in addition to pizza, like these spinach and sausage calzones.  Italian sausage is browned and paired with spinach, ricotta cheese, mozzarella and parmesan.  You can even make a double batch of this meal and freeze them for another time.  For vegetarian version, double the spinach or use soft scrambled tofu.

Spinach and Sausage Calzones
Courtesy of Betty Crocker

1 box (9 oz) Green Giant™ frozen chopped spinach
1/2 pound ground Italian sausage, browned and drained
1 cup whole milk ricotta cheese
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (4 oz)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
16 oz refrigerated pizza dough
1 egg, slightly beaten
Pizza sauce or marinara sauce, if desired

Heat oven to 375°F. Spray cookie sheet with cooking spray.

Cook spinach as directed on box; allow to sit a few minutes until cool enough to handle. Squeeze cooked spinach between paper towels to remove excess moisture. Place spinach in large bowl. Add sausage, ricotta, mozzarella, 3 tablespoons of the Parmesan and the Italian seasoning to bowl; stir until well combined.

Divide pizza dough into 8 balls. Roll and press each ball into a circle 5 to 6 inches in diameter. Place meat mixture onto one half of each of the balls, leaving a 1/2 inch border around the edge. Fold dough over filling; pinch and roll edges to seal in filling.

Transfer to cookie sheet. Brush tops of calzones with egg. Prick tops of calzones with fork to allow steam to escape.

Bake 20 to 22 minutes or until dough is golden brown, topping with remaining 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese during last 3 minutes of baking. Cool 10 minutes on cookie sheet. Serve warm with pizza sauce. 

Freezer Directions: Make as directed through step 3. Place on cookie sheet, and freeze about 4 hours or until firm. Place frozen calzones in resealable plastic freezer bag, and freeze. When ready to cook, place calzones on cookie sheet, and brush with egg. Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until dough is golden brown, topping with remaining 1 tablespoon Parmesan during last 3 minutes of baking. Serve with pizza sauce.

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