What does the word rustic mean to you? When I hear a food is rustic I immediately think it will look like crap, but taste good. So I consider my vegan calzones very rustic. They are completely delicious, and don’t look like anything special. We like to dip them in warm marinara sauce. These vegan calzones are delicious fresh out of the oven and also freeze well. I make a large batch and freeze half for future meals.
I use the premade pizza dough from Whole Foods for my calzones. I roll out one package of pizza dough into a rectangle like shape (this is the rustic part). Then I cut the dough into six square-ish parts. I add the filling to the center of each square piece and fold the dough over to form a triangle. I tuck in the ends of the dough to keep the filling securely inside the dough. Be careful not to overfill the calzone or they may explode when baking. I bake my calzones on a parchment paper lined baking sheet for 20 minutes in a 375 degree oven.
The calzone filling can be easily customized based on your family’s preferences. In our vegan calzones we like cheese, sliced and sautéed Field Roast Italian Sausages, sliced green olives and a little homemade marinara sauce. We have used a variety of vegan cheeses successfully. My favorite is the Truffled Cashew Cheese from Dreena Burton. I also always make a few with Daiya shredded cheese since it is nut free and Trey likes to bring these to school for lunch.
The last time I made calzones I tried the Follow Your Heart provolone slices. I had Follow Your Heart cheese years ago and hated it. Based on a few reviews from other bloggers about their newly updated sliced cheese I gave them another try and they are much improved. I love the Provolone version for cheese and crackers. It also worked beautifully in the calzones. The calzone with the Follow Your Heart provolone slice was far and away Trey’s favorite.
I make a quick marinara sauce for the filling and for dipping (recipe below). You can definitely use store bought sauce if you prefer. For my marinara I use canned crushed tomatoes and cook them with garlic, onions, dried herbs and a bit of red wine. It is very easy to make and a lot cheaper than buying sauce.
If you make these vegan calzones be sure to throw a few in your freezer. They make a great lunch or quick dinner when you don’t feel like cooking.
- 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
- 3 Garlic Cloves, minced
- ⅛ teaspoon Chili Flakes
- 1 teaspoon dried Basil
- 1 teaspoon dried Oregano
- ¼ cup Red Wine (or broth)
- 1 28 oz can Crushed Tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon Agave Nectar (or sugar)
- Heat olive oil in small saucepan over Medium High heat. Add minced garlic cloves and saute for 1-2 minutes until garlic is fragrant.
- Add in Chili Flakes, Basil and Oregano and saute for 1 minute. Pour in red wine and cook for 2 additional minutes.
- Pour in Crushed Tomatoes and Agave Nectar. Stir until combined. Reduce heat to low and cook for 30 minutes. Stir occasionally. Serve warm.