Buffalo Chicken Calzones with Homemade Whole Wheat Dough

Buffalo Chicken Calzones with Homemade Whole Wheat Dough

I actually impressed myself with this dinner combination…and I am my most harsh critic for sure! So it really must be special! It was so good and I think it’s definitely going to become one of those recipes that becomes craveable. This is for sure a recipe that will become a go to when serving a crowd for a casual get together. I am a huge buffalo chicken dip lover but only really eat it periodically on football Sundays. Transforming it into a meal makes me feel way less guilty about eating it for dinner because I’m not wasting a ton of calories on lime tortilla chips. I made my own whole wheat crust that turned our really hearty and filling. I was super impressed with the crust recipe actually because I know there are rumors out there that whole wheat flour won’t work so well…but I had no problem with my dough rising (as you can tell by the massive amount of dough in the pictures).

Matt had a request for a pepperoni calzone that I happily obliged to making one for him. I added some green peppers and onions to his calzone so it wouldn’t be so boring (in my opinion). The buffalo chicken calzone only took a few ingredients to make–probably things you already have sitting in your fridge. Low fat cream cheese, shredded low fat Pepper Jack and Monterrey cheese, ranch dressing, hot sauce, and precooked chicken. That is it! Super easy and wicked delicious. If you don’t have time to make homemade dough, you can absolutely use store bough pre-made dough without any problems. I think you’ll also really enjoy this recipe! It’s just in time to start perfecting before football Sunday!

Calzone Dough 

The Ingredients:

Recipe adapted from King Arthur Flour

  • 2 cups lukewarm (110°F) water
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon or packet active dry yeast
  • 5 1/2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 tablespoon salt

How to:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees–once preheated turn it off so your dough will have a warm place to rise 

  • Dissolve yeast and sugar in lukewarm water in a large bowl--I did this right in my Kitchen Aid mixing bowl
  • Let proof for 5 minutes or so–mixture should be foamy
  • Stir 1 cup flour into yeast mixture–the original recipe I think does this by hand, but I used my dough hook attachment for this whole recipe
  • Add salt, then stir in an additional 4 1/2 cups flour
  • Mix with dough hook until dough begins to climb hook and pull away from the bowl
  • Mix dough until well incorporated and then let dough rest while you grease a large bowl
  • Mix an additional 1-2 minutes–until dough is smooth, elastic and no longer sticky–I had to sprinkle in an additional tsp of flour to get rid of the stickiness
  • Form dough into a ball and place in greased bowl (I used olive oil), turning to coat all sides
  • Cover bowl with a piece of plastic wrap and set it aside to rise until doubled in size–about 1 to 2 hours in the warm oven
  • Punch dough down, and turn out onto a lightly floured surface (or you can leave dough in bowl and let it rise again–makes for a better product if you have the time)
  • AFTER dough has done its thing… Preheat oven to 450 degrees
  • Divide dough into equal pieces for as many calzones as you wish to bake–I made 2 huge ones, I bet you could get up to 6 small ones out of this dough recipe
  • Roll dough to about a 1/4 of an inch or so and add desired filling to calzone–leaving a two inch border on all sides
  • Twist dough or use a fork to seal calzones
  • Cut three small slits into the top of the calzone to allow steam to escape 
  • Brush calzones with egg wash to make sure it gets really brown and crispy–egg wash = 1 egg lightly scrambled with a splash of milk
  • Bake calzones at 450 degrees for 15 minutes
  • After 15 minutes have passed, turn oven to 400 degrees and bake an additional 15 minutes–I rotated the pan 180 degrees at this point too
  • Remove from oven and slightly cool before cutting and serving 

Buffalo Chicken Filling

The ingredients:

  • Precooked chicken–either in the crockpot or roasted in the oven
  • Hot sauce
  • Low fat cream cheese
  • Ranch dressing– I used Annie’s Organic Cowgirl Ranch Dressing from Whole Foods…or Blue Cheese if that’s what you’re into
  • Your favorite shredded cheese–I used Pepper Jack & Monterrey Cheese

How to:

Enough filling for one large calzone

  • Add 1-1.5 cups of precooked chicken to a large bowl
  • Add 4 oz of low fat cream cheese to chicken (doesn’t have to be room temperature since you’ll be baking it in the oven)
  • Add 1/2-3/4 cup of both types of shredded cheese 
  • Add a few tbs of ranch dressing to your mixture--I used a little less than 2 tbs
  • Add hot sauce based on your heat preference--I probably added 2-3 tsp for our desired heat level
  • Add salt and pepper and mix well to make sure all the ingredients are incorporated
  • Add filling to rolled out dough leaving a two inch border
  • Bake according to above directions 

Tip: if you sprinkle the edge of each calzone with garlic salt–it tastes like really delicious garlic bread:)  


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