Italian sausage and spinach are a great combination!

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Ingredients

4
Original recipe yields 4 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Crust:
Filling:

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

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  • Combine 1 cup flour, undissolved yeast, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Add very warm water and oil; mix until well blended, about 1 minute. Gradually add enough remaining flour to make a soft dough. Dough should form a ball and will be slightly sticky. Knead** on a floured surface, adding additional flour if necessary, until smooth and elastic, about 4 minutes. Cover and let rest on floured surface while preparing filling.

  • Cook sausage in skillet over medium-high heat until cooked through; remove from skillet and drain excess fat. Add spinach and water to skillet; saute 1 to 2 minutes until spinach is wilted; drain. Return sausage to pan.

  • Combine ricotta, mozzarella and egg in a mixing bowl. Stir in Italian herb seasoning, crushed red pepper and garlic salt; set aside.

  • To make calzones divide dough into four portions. Roll 1 portion into an 8-inch circle on a floured surface. Spread approximately 1/3 cup ricotta mixture in center bottom half of dough. Top with heaping 1/3 cup sausage spinach mixture leaving outer 1/2-inch free of filling. Fold top half of dough over filling. Pull edge of lower crust over top; folding and pressing layers together to form a seal. Carefully transfer to greased baking sheet. Cut 3 to 4 vents in top. Repeat with remaining dough. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes until lightly browned. Transfer to cooling rack to keep bottom crust crisp while cooling slightly. Serve with pizza sauce or other sauce for dipping.

Tips

Recipe Tip: For a crisper crust, lightly brush calzones with olive oil and sprinkle with coarse salt just before baking.

*If you don't have a thermometer, water should feel very warm to the touch.

**To knead the dough, add just enough flour to the dough and your hands to keep the dough from sticking. Flatten dough and fold it toward you. Using the heels of your hands, push the dough away with a rolling motion. Rotate dough a quarter turn and repeat the "fold, push and turn" steps. Keep kneading dough until it is smooth and elastic. Use a little more flour if dough becomes too sticky, always working the flour into the ball of dough.

Nutrition Facts

437.3 calories; protein 21g 42% DV; carbohydrates 43.4g 14% DV; fat 19.2g 30% DV; cholesterol 82mg 27% DV; sodium 1437.9mg 58% DV. Full Nutrition

Reviews (17)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
04/11/2011
Don't listen to the person who said there were so many technical errors. It was the perfect amount for the 4 of us. Not all flour has the same moisture content so 1 1/2 cups could work for some. You shouldn't blame someone because you had to throw out some filling. You could have turned it into something else. It was an excellent recipe. Read More
(35)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 3 stars
03/03/2011
Oh my...where to start. First I'll say that without the many technical errors this might have been a great recipe. In no way possible did the recipe for the crust make enough for four calzones. I got two but with one cup of flour (the other 1/2 cup in recipe is for kneading) I should have known. Because of this I had wayyy to much fillings. I had to throw out almost half of the sausage mix and more than half of the cheeses mix. What a waste! I also had to scramble to figure out what to do since we are a family of four and I have only two calzones! I had to order a pizza and after all that work I feel a bit frazzled....Sorry but this recipe just doesn't work as is. I have the two in the oven now for another day....hope they reheat well! Read More
(12)
29 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 19
  • 4 star values: 7
  • 3 star values: 2
  • 2 star values: 0
  • 1 star values: 1
Rating: 5 stars
04/11/2011
Don't listen to the person who said there were so many technical errors. It was the perfect amount for the 4 of us. Not all flour has the same moisture content so 1 1/2 cups could work for some. You shouldn't blame someone because you had to throw out some filling. You could have turned it into something else. It was an excellent recipe. Read More
(35)
Rating: 5 stars
10/20/2010
I used the food processor pizza dough recipe from American Test Kitchen's cook book. I also used 1 lb of ricotta because I wanted to use it up and only 3 links of hot Italian sausage which I browned then gave a quick whirl in my food processor with the spinach and ricotta. I keep a small container of extra virgin olive oil with a garlic clove in it for flavor that I use to brush pizza dough and calzones with before they go into the oven. I also put slashes on top of calzones to allow the moisture in riccota to vent other wise they may explode which I've had happen. I bake them on my pizza stone and serve with a home made pizza sauce from another site. This was a huge hit. Read More
(23)
Rating: 5 stars
01/05/2011
This recipe is great! I did change things up just a tad. When I sauted the spinach I added a couple tablespoons of minced garlic. Instead of sausage I used pepperoni. Since the pepperoni was already cooked I just used a Tbsp of EVOO to the pan spinach w/garlic and then added the water. I then drained the liquid and added the pepperoni. Also once I made the slits on the top I lightly buttered the top and sprinkled some parm cheese. Even my picky pizaa loving husband enjoyed this. Read More
(19)
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Rating: 5 stars
11/12/2010
Excellent recipe! I used refrigerator pizza dough and doubled the recipe so I had one to put in the freezer. Probably would've turned out even better had I made the dough from scratch but it went together very quickly using a premade dough and I had dinner for 2 nights. Read More
(14)
Rating: 3 stars
03/03/2011
Oh my...where to start. First I'll say that without the many technical errors this might have been a great recipe. In no way possible did the recipe for the crust make enough for four calzones. I got two but with one cup of flour (the other 1/2 cup in recipe is for kneading) I should have known. Because of this I had wayyy to much fillings. I had to throw out almost half of the sausage mix and more than half of the cheeses mix. What a waste! I also had to scramble to figure out what to do since we are a family of four and I have only two calzones! I had to order a pizza and after all that work I feel a bit frazzled....Sorry but this recipe just doesn't work as is. I have the two in the oven now for another day....hope they reheat well! Read More
(12)
Rating: 5 stars
01/29/2013
We have a great pizza dough recipe we make in our bread machine. It can easily make two medium size pizzas. Since our children were more interested in pizza I had enough dough left over for two large calzones. It was great. My husband has a nitrate allergy found in most sausage so we used Al Fresco brand Sweet Italian Style Chicken Sausage (with red and green peppers in it). It comes in links pre-cooked so I diced up two links and warmed them up on the stove. Made the spinach and cheese mixture as directed except I eliminated all the Italian type seasonings since the sausage already was very flavorful. I added the toppings as directed but sprinkled a tiny amount of mozzarella on top before folding over. Using a fork to pinch the edges works great and looks professional. I baked them on our pre-heated pizza stone for about 18 min and they were perfect. Put pizza sauce on the side. Delicious. Read More
(5)
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Rating: 5 stars
10/23/2011
I cheated and used store-bought dough but the filling was fabulous! Read More
(4)
Rating: 5 stars
08/18/2011
Great recipe! There's enough dough for 4 and it's delicious! Read More
(4)
Rating: 4 stars
02/20/2013
5 stars for taste but the previous reviewer was right on when she said the proportions were off. I'm an experienced cook but found it nearly impossible to create 8" circles out of the dough. Also even with adding additional flour the dough was very sticky. Next time I'd use 2 cups of flour when making the dough and slightly increase salt and sugar. Also easier if you use a silpat to roll out dough and bake directly on it. Read More
(3)