Sausage and Pepper Pizza Sandwiches could also be called the failed calzone. Truth be told, I had started to make calzones with my favorite pizza toppings. I had diligently pressed the seams together, rolled the ends to shut them tight, but the pizza dough would not stay sealed. I was ready to throw the entire baking sheet out the window, when I remembered the delectable “sub sandwiches” our local pizza joint makes. They make bread out of the pizza dough. The pizza dough becomes a little crunchy on the outside, but still light and airy on the inside. Plus an extra bonus to pizza sandwiches, I could fit more filling inside. That did it, sealed the deal. Forget making calzones, I was going to make pizza sandwiches instead. When I was making calzones I could only fit a few measly pieces of red pepper and sausage into the filling. By not needing to seal the dough, I could put more protein, more vegetables in our dinner and fewer carbs. That sounds like the perfect dinner to me.
We must talk about the sauce. This became a controversy in our house. Who knew we could have such passionate opinions about whether the sauce should be in the sandwich or on top of it. I had happened to see an episode of Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives and the Italian Chef put his sauce on the outside of the calzone. You could see that the sauce caramelized a little, plus it kept the calzone from getting soggy. Well, I thought that was an absolutely brilliant idea. I love the idea of a more robust, caramelized sauce. My daughter, on the other hand, thought it was the worst idea ever. With the look she gave me, you would have thought I had horns growing out of my head. Luckily I had decided to experiment and make some with sauce on top and some with sauce inside. The pizza sandwiches with the sauce on top were everything I had hoped for. The pizza sauce had a more robust, slightly caramelized flavor. It was a great way to dress up store-bought pizza sauce or marinara sauce. Ly, of course. opted for the sauce inside. She is not one to break with tradition.
Try these with your family and see which way you like the sauce better. They are extremely quick to put together which makes them perfect for a weeknight. Use your favorite chicken or turkey sausage. I did use a pre-cooked one for these, yet another time saver. Put Sausage and Pepper Pizza Sandwiches onto heavy rotation for dinner over the summer. It is a healthy dinner the whole family can enjoy.
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Happy Healthy Eating,
But wait, there’s more. Check out these deliciously, healthy weeknight meals: