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Vegan Philly Cheesesteak Calzone

All right, some of you may not understand this but hear me out. This isn’t a traditional Philly cheesesteak. This is a vegan version of a delicious sandwich that I decided to put inside pizza dough. It sounds weird but it is life changing. If you are from Philly and are offended that I would do such thing, I’m sorry. But really, this vegan Philly cheesesteak calzone happened as a complete surprise and I’m so happy about it. I was creating a different recipe but it failed. Hard. So, I asked my boyfriend what he wanted for dinner hoping maybe it would spark some creative juices. And it did. He said Calzone, I said Philly Cheesesteak. So naturally I just chose to combine them and create a Vegan Philly Cheesesteak Calzone.

Notes: This Vegan Philly Cheesesteak Calzone uses the same seitan that we used in my Vegan Seitan Gyro recipe a while back. It’s baked and must sit in the fridge overnight for best results. You only need half of the loaf so use the leftovers to make the Vegan Seitan Gyro or Vegan Reuben Sandwich. Also, in this recipe I used vegan Mozzarella cheese shreds because it’s what my store had and I enjoyed it a lot. For a more traditional take on a Philly cheesesteak, use vegan provolone cheese.

If you’re reading this real time, can you believe we only have a few more days left of 2019? This year flew by and I can’t help but be cheesy and reflect. A lot of amazing things happened but starting this blog surpasses everything by far. Thank you for coming here and reading my words. It means so much to me that you are making these recipes that I put my heart in to and thank you for sending me pictures and kind messages. They are always appreciated and make my day. Thank you for helping me spread veganism in a positive way. I hope you all return in the New Year and keep cooking with me. All right, let’s get cooking!

Ingredients

Servings: 4

Seitan:

*Make this seitan the night before and refrigerate overnight for best results.

  • 3 cups Vital Wheat Gluten
  • 1/4 cups Nutritional Yeast
  • 2 tsp Onion Powder
  • 2 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1 tsp Paprika
  • 2 tsp Thyme
  • 1 tsp Black Pepper
  • 2 1/2 cups Vegetable Broth 
  • 3 tbsps Olive Oil
  • 1/4 cup Soy Sauce
  • 2 tbsps Apple Cider Vinegar 
  • 1 tbsp Tomato Paste

Pizza Dough:

  • 3/4 cup Warm Water, 115-120F
  • 2 tsp Instant Yeast
  • 2 cups All Purpose Flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 2 tbsp Olive Oil, divided

Philly Cheesesteak Filling:

  • 2 tbsp Olive Oil, divided
  • Half of Seitan Loaf, using recipe listed above
  • 1 Red Bell Pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 Green Bell Pepper, thinly sliced
  • A Small Yellow Onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 3 tbsps Vegan Worcestershire Sauce, I used Annie’s
  • 8oz Bag of Vegan Mozzarella Cheese Shreds, or sub vegan provolone
  • 1 tbsp Almond Milk, for egg wash replacement
  • 1 tbsp Vegan Butter, for brushing on top

Instructions

Step 1: Make the Seitan

  • Preheat oven to 350F
  • In a large bowl, stir together the vital wheat gluten, nutritional yeast, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, thyme, and black pepper. 
  • In another bowl, whisk together the vegetable broth, olive oil, soy sauce, apple cider vinegar, and tomato paste. 
  • Pour the wet ingredients in to the dry and knead the dough for a few minutes. It should be slippery, not dry. 
  • Roll the seitan dough into a long log. Roughly 5 by 10. Wrap loaf in parchment paper or foil and twist the sides and tuck them under the bottom of the loaf. It should be fairly tight but leaving a little room for it to grow. 
  • Place the wrapped loaf on a baking tray and bake for 90 minutes.
  • The loaf should fill firm when baked.
  • Let completely cool before placing it in the fridge overnight.

Step 2: Make the Dough

  • Add the warm water and 1 tbsp of the olive oil to a medium sized bowl.
  • Then, add in the instant yeast, all purpose flour, and salt on top of the water. Stir with a wooden spoon until crumbly. Then, pour the dough on to a clean surface and knead it for 2-3 minutes or until it comes together in to a smooth ball.
  • Coat a large bowl with the remaining oil and place the dough in to the bowl and turn it over to cover both sides in oil.
  • Cover with a dish towel and let rise for 1 hour.

Step 3: Prep the Filling

  • Thinly slice the onion, red bell pepper, and green bell pepper.
  • Take the seitan out of the fridge and thinly slice half of the loaf.
  • Add 1 tbsp of Oil to a large sauce pan on medium-high heat.
  • Add the bell peppers and onions and salt. Cook for 6-7 minutes. Add 1 tbsp of the Vegan Worcestershire Sauce. Mix well. Remove onions and peppers from pan and set aside.
  • In the same pan, add the remaining oil. Add the sliced seitan. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Then, add in the remaining 2 tbsps of the Worcestershire Sauce. Mix well. Remove from pan and set aside.

Step 4: Assemble & Bake

  • Preheat oven to 425F
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  • Lightly flour a clean surface.
  • Place the dough on the surface and divide in to 4 pieces.
  • Roll out each piece to be a 1/4in thick circle. Doesn’t have to be perfect.
  • Sprinkle some of the cheese on half of the circle leaving 1/2in of dough clean around the edge. Top the cheese off with a layer of seitan, a layer of onions and peppers, and finish it off with more cheese.
  • Pour the almond milk in to a small bowl and lightly brush along the border of the dough.
  • Now, carefully fold the other side of the dough over the filling and seal the edges.
  • Continue until all 4 calzones have been made. Then, with a sharp knife score the top of the calzones to allow steam to escape.
  • Carefully transfer each calzone to the prepared baking sheet.
  • Bake for 16-20 minutes or until golden brown.
  • Let cool a few minutes before digging in. Enjoy!

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