Soft & Cheesy Pepperoni Pizza Rolls with Sweet & Spicy Marinara Sauce (vegan)

It’s recently been brought to our attention that some people don’t enjoy our use of curse words while describing food, so let’s start this off the right way. If a cinnamon roll and margarita pizza fucked, this would be their love child.

Alright, that should weed out some of the sensitive internet moms.

This recipe is the spawn of a mad genius thought Kim conjured up while brainstorming recipe ideas one day. I can’t lie, when she first mentioned “pizza rolls, but like… in the form of cinnamon rolls,” I was intrigued, but not entirely confident we could pull it off. After a little contemplation however, I figured “we’ve made some really bomb cinnamon rolls before and we’re definitely no strangers to pizza, so maybe we can actually do this.” Fast forward to our first test run and EUREKA—love at first bite.

Incase you’re still curious as to what exactly is in these rolls, let us formally introduce you. The bread is made from a tender, soft, and brioche-like dough that’s—no surprise—akin to cinnamon roll dough. Layered throughout the dough is an array of traditional pizza toppings, including tomato paste, minced garlic, fresh basil, vegan pepperoni, and melty mozzarella. As is the case with any Americanized Italian food, we pack on another layer of cheese on top for that added pizza pizazz. For added umph, we pair the rolls with a simple, sweet sriracha tomato sauce, made from stewed tomatoes, sugar, and sriracha (go figure). The brightness of the sauce contrasts the deep flavors of the rolls, making for a perfectly balanced combination.

Admittedly, the idea of these rolls is a bit intimidating, but if you’re familiar with making cinnamon rolls or handling yeast doughs in general, you won’t even break a sweat over these. Plus, the absolute awe that comes from the tantalizing smell, pillowy texture, and nostalgic flavor is worth the little bit of work involved.

Alright, we’ll stop talking now. Just make ’em yourself and tell us how they come out! If you like what your eyes are tasting, then share this recipe with your friends on Instagram, Facebook, or Pinterest at @noeggsorham! For more flame-emoji photos, geeky food talk, and mouth-watering dishes, subscribe to our email list. Tag us in a photo when you create one of our recipes at home so we can share it!

Pizza Rolls for Prez 2020

Soft & Cheesy Pepperoni Pizza Rolls with Sweet & Spicy Marinara Sauce (vegan)

  • Servings: ~10 rolls
  • Difficulty: Moderate
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Tender, airy, and melt-in-your-mouth brioche dough layered with tomato paste, minced garlic, fresh basil, vegan pepperoni, and melty mozzarella. Topped with extra cheese and served alongside bright sriracha tomato sauce.

Ingredients

Dough

  • About 420 grams (3 ½ c) all-purpose flour
  • 8 oz (1 cup) unsweetened soy milk
  • 56 g (¼ c) Melt vegan butter
  • 1 tbsp powdered sugar
  • 2 tsps instant yeast*
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Filling

  • 7 medium cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2.25 oz vegan pepperoni, cut into quarters*
  • thin layer of tomato paste (~2 oz)
  • fresh chopped basil
  • thin layer of shredded mozzarella (VioLife is our personal favorite)

Topping

  • more mozzarella cheese

Dipping Sauce

  • 6 oz stewed tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp sriracha

Directions

  1. Combine soy milk and butter in a small pot over low heat. Warm, stirring frequently, until temperature reaches 115° F and butter just melts.
  2. Whisk together flour, powdered sugar, yeast, and salt in the bowl of stand-up mixer. Pour in soy milk mixture and use dough hook to combine over low speed. Once flour’s moistened, boost speed to medium and knead until dough is smooth & clings to the hook; about 2 minutes.
  3. The dough should be very moist, but not so much so that it sticks to your fingers. If the dough sticks to the bottom of the bowl, add enough flour for it to firm up enough to cling to the hook. If the dough’s too stiff, add a touch of soy milk to loosen.
  4. Remove dough from the hook, form into a ball, lightly grease bowl of your stand-up mixer, place back in bowl, cover with plastic wrap or tea towel, and stash in a warm place until it’s doubled in size; about 1 hour.
  5. After an hour, lightly press the air out of the dough and plop onto a clean, lightly floured surface. Roll into a rectangle roughly 23 inches wide and 10 inches long. Once you get close, pull the corners outwards in order to create more of a rectangular shape.
  6. Note: when assembling, be sure to have the dough laid out with the long side horizontal to you and the short side facing you.
  7. Using a pastry brush, spread on a thin layer of tomato paste all over the dough (minus a 1/2 inch along the top, wide edge). Evenly sprinkle on enough basil to cover, followed by garlic, pepperoni, and a thin layer of cheese. 
  8. Dab a bit of water along the top edge then tightly roll the dough away from you. Once you get to the top edge, pull it over the dough and lightly crimp to seal. Roll the dough so it’s seal side down, then cut the log into 2 ½ inch each pieces, creating about 10 rolls.
  9. Evenly place rolls in a buttered 8 x 8 inch baking pan. Give each roll space, as they’ll expand during their second rise. 
  10. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit in a warm spot for another 45-60 minutes or until they’re large and fluffy. After 45 minutes, pre-heat oven to 350° F.
  11. Bake rolls for 20 minutes, remove from oven, top with a generous amount of cheese, and bake for another 7 minutes.
  12. While they bake, blend together stewed tomatoes, sugar, and sriracha in a mini food processor or personal blender cup until smooth. Set aside until ready to use.
  13. Remove from oven and cool for 8 minutes before serving. Enjoy while fresh with dipping sauce! Cover any leftovers with aluminum foil and store at room temp for up to 12 hours or in fridge for up to 3 days. Reheat in a 400° F oven until rolls are warm.

*If you don’t have instant yeast, you can replace it with active dry yeast. All you have to do is whisk it into the warm butter and soy milk mixture, let it sit until foamy (5-10 minutes), then carry on with the recipe like normal.

*While it may sound like a rare item, vegan pepperoni can usually be found in the refrigerated vegetarian meat section of most grocery stores.

*You can usually find stewed tomatoes alongside other canned tomato products, but if your store doesn’t carry it, you can replace it with crushed tomatoes.

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