I love a good calzone, or pizza, or anything that has a crust on it. Okay… so I like pie too. Love pie. Anyway… that’s a whole other story.
Preparing meals from scratch for my family is something I absolutely love to do. It doesn’t have to take a lot of time, and it doesn’t have to be something difficult. Whether it is a time-consuming meal prep or something that is fast and easy, it doesn’t matter. What is important is that you enjoy yourself and have fun cooking up some good food for your family.
You know I’m made my share of pizza, bread sticks and pizza sauce. My super simple starter is this simple pizza dough that basically makes itself. You simply cannot mess it up.
These are chicken, broccoli and cheese calzones. Leave the broccoli out it you choose. I chose to keep it in there. Extra green for my kids is always a plus. The beauty of this recipe is that if you make it as is, you get all the protein, veggies and dairy in one tidy meal. Or, if you’d like a vegetarian version, leave out the chicken. Simple as that.
Don’t forget the sauce. Served on the side, a pizza sauce or marinara is key. We use a homemade pizza sauce, which is easy to make whether you are using fresh or canned tomatoes. It’s even easy to make off-season, using simple ingredients found at any grocery store:
First: Make your pizza dough. Whatever pizza dough you want. I’m partial to the homemade yeast dough our family uses, but use what you like. There are two different methods I like to use for making calzones. The first is making a braid out of the dough (learn how to braid dough here):
The second option, a simple half moon. Make a circle out of your dough (rolling, pressing or stretching), load half of it with fillings, and fold it over. Press the dough together and seal. With either of these methods you can use a pastry brush to paint on some egg wash or butter to give the outside a golden brown appearance. Egg wash results in a deeper golden tone than butter.
Now, with my chicken, broccoli and cheese calzones, I chose the braid method. I think it offers a gorgeous presentation. But that’s just me. You choose whichever method works for you.Print
Chicken and Cheese Calzones
- Pizza dough
- 1 cup frozen broccoli (thawed and dried)
- 1/2 pound cooked chicken breast (chopped or shredded)
- 1 cup light cottage cheese
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese
- 1 teaspoon pizza/pasta seasoning (I use Dean Jacob’s)
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Serve with marinara or pizza sauce
- Preheat oven to 425.
- Mix together broccoli, chicken, cottage cheese, mozzarella cheese, and seasonings.
- Roll, or press out dough into either a rectangle if braiding or a circle if making enclosed calzones.
- Fill with chicken and broccoli mix and braid or press dough together to close. Brush top with egg wash or melted butter if desired.
- Bake at 425 for 12-18 minutes. If you are baking on a pizza stone, you will likely need to bake for a little bit longer.
- Serve with marinara or pizza sauce. We love calzones with our homemade pizza sauce.