45 min serves 4-6

Calzone with Ground Beef

A calzone purist might say adding a bit of sauce is sacrilege but we thought our 95% lean beef benefited by a bit of moisture. This recipe calls for our favorite pre-made pizza dough by Rhodes. Be sure to read defrosting instructions, you’ll need to plan ahead to have the dough ready. The dough comes in a 3 pack and this recipe can easily be doubled or tripled so it’s great if you’re cooking for a crowd or want to freeze for later, freezing instructions in notes section.

ACTIVE: 25 min. PASSIVE: 20 min. DIFFICULTY Medium


  • 1 piece Rhodes Thaw, Rise and Bake Pizza Dough
  • 2 t high heat cooking oil, such as grape seed
  • 1 medium onion finely diced
  • 1 16 OZ package Pre 95% Lean Ground Beef
  • 3 OZ pepperoni, finely minced
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely minced or passed through a garlic press
  • 1/2 t crushed red pepper
  • 1 t fennel seed
  • 1 t Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 t kosher salt
  • 1 15 OZ can favorite store bought pizza sauce, we love Rao’s
  • 1 16 OZ container fresh spinach, chopped
  • 1/4 C fresh basil, chopped
  • 2 C shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 C grated parmesan cheese
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten with 1 T water
  1. Thaw dough according to package instructions and set aside.
  2. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat and add the chopped onion, cook until it begins to soften, about 4 minutes. Adjust heat to medium high and add the ground beef, breaking up meat with a wooden spoon or mallet until cooked, about 7 to 8 minutes. Add pepperoni, garlic, crushed red pepper, fennel, Italian seasoning, and salt. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes then add 1/4 C of the pizza sauce. Add spinach and basil and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Filling can be made up to 2 days ahead. Bring to room temperature before assembling calzones.
  3. To Assemble calzones: Preheat over to 450F.

    Place dough on a clean, lightly floured work surface. Lightly flour a rolling pin and roll out dough, dusting with flour as needed to prevent sticking. You want it thin but not transparent. 1 piece of Rhodes dough should make about a 16” round or rectangular piece. We used a 6” round glass bowl to cut our dough but you can make your calzones smaller or larger. Press your bowl into the dough, twisting to cut through the dough, utilizing as much dough as possible. Carefully pull the dough away from the circle cut outs and set aside. If there is enough excess dough roll out to form another circle.
  4. Have a parchment lined baking sheet ready. Mix mozzarella and parmesan cheeses in to the meat mixture. Place about 1/3 C of the meat and cheese mix in the center of the dough circle. Adjust amount if you are making smaller or larger calzones. Fold the dough over the filling and lightly pat the dough to distribute the filling evenly. You want about 1/4 to 1/2 inch seam edge. Using a small fork, crimp the seam of the dough to seal. Continue assembling calzones until all the filling and dough are used.
  5. Place calzones on the baking sheet and carefully brush with egg wash. Bake for 15 minutes and let rest for at least 5 minutes before serving.
  6. Serve with a generous amount of pizza sauce for dipping. 


Calzone with Ground Beef

Amount per 317

  • 510kcal

  • 38.29g

  • 17.45g

  • 48.49g


Recipe developed by   Jennifer Borchardt