What is the Difference Between a Calzone and a Stromboli?

calzone and stromboli

You might find yourself craving Italian food but can’t decide whether to go for a calzone or a stromboli. Well, fret no more! In this article, you’ll discover the key differences between these two delicious, doughy delights.

As you delve deeper into the world of Italian cuisine, you’ll learn that while both calzones and strombolis are made from pizza dough and often filled with similar ingredients, the main difference lies in their folding style and cooking method. This knowledge will empower you to make the perfect choice the next time your taste buds call for some Italian goodness!


Calzone: Definition and Origins

Naples and Italian Cuisine

You might be wondering where calzone, a popular Italian dish, originated from. This delicious creation comes from Naples, a city rich with culinary history and known for its passion for Italian cuisine. As you dive into the flavors of calzone, you’re actually tasting a piece of Italy’s cultural heritage.

Half-Moon Shape


The calzone is famous for its unique half-moon shape, which sets it apart from other dishes in Italian cuisine. At its core, a calzone is made from a simple yet flavorful combination of ingredients: dough is filled with a blend of Italian cheeses, meat such as pepperoni, and vegetables before being folded over to create its distinctive crescent form. Once assembled, the calzone is baked to golden brown perfection, resulting in a satisfying, hearty meal you’ll undoubtedly love.


Stromboli: Definition and Origins

Stromboli is an Italian American dish creation that you might have come across on a menu or two. It’s a delicious, folded pizza-like dish often filled with various ingredients, such as cheese, meats, and vegetables. But where did it come from, and how is it different from a calzone? Let’s dive into the history and characteristics of this mouthwatering food.

Philadelphia and Italian-American Influence

The origin of stromboli can be traced back to the city of Philadelphia in the 1950s. South Philadelphia, to be more specific, is where Italian immigrants introduced this delectable dish to American palates. As you explore the flavors and ingredients of stromboli, you’ll find the wonderful intermingling of Italian and American culinary traditions that birthed this scrumptious concoction.

Rectangular Shape

One significant aspect that sets the stromboli apart from its calzone cousin is its shape. While calzones are typically crescent-shaped, a stromboli is formed into a rectangle or elongated roll before being baked to perfection. The long and rectangular shape not only looks appetizing but provides you with a satisfying filling-to-dough ratio in every bite you take.


Key Differences between Calzone and Stromboli

Ingredients and Fillings

When it comes to ingredients and fillings, there are some notable differences between a calzone and stromboli. In a calzone, you’ll typically find a combination of ricotta cheese, mozzarella cheese, and various cured meats like salami. On the other hand, stromboli usually features mozzarella, tomato sauce, and a variety of cured meats, veggies, or peppers, depending on your preference.

  • Calzone fillings: Ricotta cheese, mozzarella, cured meats (e.g., salami or pepperoni)
  • Stromboli fillings: Mozzarella, tomato sauce, cured meats, veggies, or peppers such as the bell pepper


Sealing Techniques

The sealing techniques employed in making the two also differ. A calzone is fully enclosed, with its edges pressed together to keep the fillings contained. As for stromboli, it’s rolled up with the fillings inside, creating a spiral pattern, then sealed at the ends with an egg wash or olive oil to hold everything together.

  • Calzone sealing: Edges pressed together
  • Stromboli sealing: Rolled up like a pinwheel and sealed with egg wash or olive oil


Shapes and Sizes

Finally, there’s a distinction in the shapes and sizes of these delicious dishes. Calzones often resemble half-moon shapes or a folded pizza, as they are made by folding the dough over the fillings. Stromboli is typically formed into a cylinder or loaf shape – its hearty arrangement and presentation are similar to that of a delicious Italian volcano!

  • Calzone shape: Half-moon or folded pizza
  • Stromboli shape: Cylinder or loaf


You Might Also Like:

What are the Different Bacon Options?

Written by Laurie Graves

Laurie is a 50-something wife and boy mom, who loves to share easy recipes, DIY home ideas, and food hacks. She truly believes that with a little inspiration, anyone can make their home and meals feel special.