The chicken parmesan calzone made its mark on my life in college. I went to Saint Anselm College in Manchester, NH. Probably unbeknownst to anyone reading this outside of New England. That aside, any student or alumni will be able to speak of their legendary calzones.
I’m not sure I can articulate what makes them so good. The crust, the filling, all seems to be just perfectly pieced together. The most unique element of the Saint A’s calzone is the pizza like finish. This calzone is your typical half moon shaped calzone, but with a layer of mozzarella cheese and sauce on the outer crust. It gives the exterior an unreal cheesy, crispy texture.
Over the course of four years, I easily consumed about 100 of them (both sober…and not so sober). But it’s not until now, 7 years later, that I’ve actually tried to the chicken parm calzone in my kitchen. It’s been years since I’ve had one, but I can still taste it like it was yesterday.
The chicken parmesan calzone must be simple. Crispy chicken (I use frozen Tyson chicken tenders), pizza sauce, shredded mozzarella and parmesan cheese, and butter. Folded into a perfect half moon and baked until golden brown. The essential final touch—add a thin layer of sauce and fresh mozzarella cheese to the top of the crust, giving you a pizza ON TOP of your calzone. It sounds like it may be too much, but it’s the special touch that sets this calzone apart.
Slice into thin strips and serve. Perfect for sharing at your next football party.
- 16-20 ounces pizza dough
- 6-7 fully cooked crispy chicken tenders, sliced (I like Tyson Crispy Chicken Strips)
- 8 ounce bag shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 3/4 cup pizza sauce
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
- flour for dough
- Preheat the oven to 400 °F. If using frozen chicken tenders, cook them ahead of time according to the directions on the package. Slice into smaller strips and set aside.
- Meanwhile, roll out the dough into a 12 inch circle, like you would pizza crust.
- Choose one half, and spread 1/2 cup of pizza sauce over the dough, leaving a one inch border around the edge. Top the same half with 1 cup mozzarella cheese, all parmesan cheese, and chicken tenders.
- Fold the other half of the dough over the filling to the opposite edge, forming a half moon shape. Pinch the ends together to seal.
- Place calzone on a greased baking sheet and baste the top with melted butter. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove the calzone from the oven and top evenly (again leaving a 1 inch crust around the edges) with 1/4 cup pizza sauce and about 1/2 a cup of mozzarella cheese. Bake for an additional 10 minutes.
- Remove from the oven, let cool for 5-7 minutes, and slice into strips for serving.