Well, here we are in the gray days of January. We had our first snow last night! It was lovely waking up to a beautiful winter wonderland. It was the first time the chickens had ever seen snow! And it was fun to watch the dogs doing full wind sprints around the back yard, tumbling over themselves in the snow. These are the best days and nights for cooking cozy dishes and snuggling up in front of the fire. And since it’s Friday, having something pizza-ish is sort of implied. So we’re uncorking a big bottle of red and making this easy Pepperoni and Cheese Stromboli.
Easy because we are using premade pizza dough. There is a time and place for homemade dough, and we all know it’s worth the effort. But that time is not on a Friday night after we’ve worked all week and it’s too cold to go out or make much effort in the kitchen. There’s no shame in using premade pizza dough, especially when the rest of this Pepperoni and Cheese Stromboli is as scratch as it gets.
The Homemade Pizza Sauce in this Stromboli
Since the dough is easy, we’re putting our time into making the sauce. This is my go-to pizza sauce recipe and let me tell you – it is bomb. It’s thick, rich and bold. Never watery and never meek. This is the kind of pizza sauce that clings to the dough and hits you in the back of your jaw with the first bite. I freaking love this sauce.
It’s made of both tomato puree and tomato paste, along with a blend of Italian seasonings, garlic and olive oil. Chances are you already have most of the ingredients in your pantry.
Homemade Italian Seasoning on this Pepperoni and Cheese Stromboli
Also from scratch is the homemade Italian seasoning that goes onto the crust. Just a few herbs and spices like basil, oregano and parsley along with a little Parmesan cheese and you’re off to the races. I keep homemade Italian seasoning in a container in the fridge and sprinkle it onto all sorts of Italian dishes like pasta, pizza and calzones.
When you make this Pepperoni and Cheese Stromboli, you might be tempted to cover the entire surface of dough with cheese and sauce before you roll it up. But be sure to leave a perimeter of dough around the sauce and cheese. This will ensure that things don’t squirt out the sides of your cooked stromboli. Remember, the dough will expand in the oven.
There will be enough to feed 4 people easily. Serve it with a big salad and your favorite bottle of wine, and settle in for a cozy winter night. And if you love this Pepperoni and Cheese Stromboli, drop a rating or leave a comment below! I’d love to hear from you. Enjoy!
Pepperoni and Cheese Stromboli
- 1 premade pizza dough
- 1/2 cups pepperoni slices
- 5 slices provolone cheese
- 1 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese grated, divided
The Pizza Sauce
- 28 oz. can tomato puree
- 3/4 cup tomato paste
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
- 1 Tbsp. sugar
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. dried basil
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- 1 tsp. dried parsley
The Italian Seasoning
- 1 Tbsp. sesame seeds
- 1 Tbsp. Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp. dried basil
- 1/2 tsp. dried parsley
- 1/2 tsp. red pepper
- 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
- Make the pizza sauce: In a saucepan, heat the oil over medium-low heat. Saute the garlic until it starts to brown. Stir in the tomato puree and tomato paste.
- Reduce heat to low. Stir in the sugar, salt, basil, oregano and parsley. Simmer on low heat for 15-30 minutes.
- Make the Italian seasoning: Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Store any extra seasoning in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Roll pizza dough out onto a floured surface. Shape into a rectangle. It does not have to be perfect. Spread pizza sauce down the middle of the dough, lengthwise. Arrange the slices of provolone, pepperoni and 1 cup of mozzarella over the pizza sauce.
- Starting from the bottom right corner, start to roll the dough towards the top left corner. Once you have rolled the dough completely up to the left corner, gently transfer the stromboli to the prepared baking sheet.
- Brush the dough with olive oil. Top with the remaining 1/2 cup of mozzarella cheese. Sprinkle generously with Italian seasoning. Bake 20-22 minutes. Cool 5-10 minutes before slicing.